Students Carry Bullet-Riddled Sign Honoring Emmett Till

These students carried the vandalized memorial sign for Emmett Till, a teenager who was lynched in Mississippi in 1955, and laid it at the base of a Confederate statue on their campus.

The trial galvanized the modern civil rights movement

These students carried the vandalized memorial sign for Emmett Till to the base of the Confederate statue on campus. It was in the middle of the night in 1955 when Emmett Till, a 14-year-old buy, was lynched in Mississippi. Till, a native of Chicago, was visiting relatives in Mississippi when he had a fateful encounter with a white woman named Carolyn Bryant. Till's murder and the fallout from the trial galvanized the modern civil rights movement. University of Mississippi students, Tyler Yarbrough, Curtis Hills, Isabell Spafford, Yasmine Malone started the group, the Emmett Till Legacy Alliance, in 2018 and held a student panel before walking the sign to the statue.

This is the fourth sign that the commission has placed at the site. The first was swiped in 2008, and no arrests were ever made in connection with the incident. The replacement marker was vandalized with bullets, more than 100 rounds over the course of several years. Just 35 days after it was erected in 2018, the third sign was shot at as well. The third memorial made headlines recently when Jerry Mitchell of the Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting, in conjunction with ProPublica, revealed that three University of Mississippi students had been suspended from their fraternity house after posing in front of the sign with guns, in a photo that was posted to the private Instagram account of one of the students. The Justice Department is reportedly investigating the incident.

The sign has now been taken down, and a new one is “on its way,” Patrick Weems, executive director of the Emmett Till Memorial Commission said according to CBS News. Chavez, Savidge and Sayers of CNN report that the replacement memorial will weigh 600 pounds and be made of reinforced steel. This bulletproof sign was erected and is expected to be open to the public by the Tallahatchie River in October 2019.


10/31/2019 12:00 PM
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  • Chris H.
    10/31/2019 12:53

    . . and,sadly, I feel there will be those who label this today as 'fake news' . .

  • Brut
    10/31/2019 13:11

    "It took 50 years to get the first memorial to Till erected in Tallahatchie County, the site of the lynching that helped spark the civil rights movement. But then an entirely new battle began: keeping the tribute intact." Learn more:

  • Karen Z.
    10/31/2019 13:13


  • Joanie L.
    10/31/2019 13:25

    Mississippi is clearly a cursed town. A child’s murder is celebrated and his vandalized memorial is a trophy to be shot at.... May God have mercy on these people

  • George G.
    10/31/2019 13:52

    Never ever forget!

  • Alpa A.
    10/31/2019 18:13

    So this world is no different from India. Hate..hate..hate... Everywhere.

  • Hope C.
    10/31/2019 18:34

    Awesome action and inspired idea. Very powerful.

  • Michael W.
    10/31/2019 20:10

    It makes me sad to see such hatred still exist,

  • Kate S.
    10/31/2019 21:44

    How DISGRACEFUL that the memorial to Emmett Till has been vandalized at all, let alone so many times!! What was done to him epitomizes the horror of racism & we should NEVER forget!! On the other hand, confederate monuments glorify treason & should ALL be removed!! Is there any other country in the world that allows so many monuments to TREASON??!! 😡😡

  • Marilee D.
    11/01/2019 01:53

    Such bravery and wisdom!

  • Amanda M.
    11/01/2019 07:10

    I hope those guys who shot up that sign are identified and inundated with attention they don’t want! Despicable!

  • Guillermo B.
    11/02/2019 05:16

    America should be better than this, but it’s prove that the young White kids are still taught to Hate. Sad

  • Sylvia R.
    11/02/2019 07:13

    This made me cry... I remember learning about Emmett in school and seeing his mutilated corpse. And then to see these disgusting people vandalize those monuments. It's sickening.

  • Kerry A.
    11/02/2019 14:56

    👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 You guys are more powerful and in this movement you guys represent a good education of knowing the real story and how inhuman are some laws and some humans!! This should never be forgotten. Amazing.

  • Jesus O.
    11/03/2019 20:04

    No white supremacist deserves to breathe.

  • Carlett H.
    11/03/2019 20:43

    When I saw the documentary of Emmett Till first time I couldn't stop crying because I have never seing such an atrocity and so much hate and ignorance from a pair of white men. Now this!

  • Wyatt F.
    11/06/2019 03:18

    Don’t let the actions of the few hurt the good nature of the many not all of us are bad just have some bad apples in the tree

  • Nacha N.
    11/06/2019 15:59

    El maldito racismo 😡😡

  • Orlando G.
    11/06/2019 23:01

    Food for thought to any ethnicity of our “human race” our fellow man world wide your skin,background,country it doesn’t matter at all what DOSE matter is what you bring to the table the respect,kindness,and humble TO your fellow man,if you don’t then I feel nothing but pity for you let theses words sink in before you disrespect or hate onto another due to differences ✌🏻♥️

  • Valderrama O.
    11/07/2019 01:16

    Racism is so pathetic in all aspects. Hate is the most stupid thing in a human being.