Milan, Georgia, U.S.
At 1:00 AM on the morning of May 24, 1919, two white men, John Dowdy and Levi Evans went into the black section of Milan. They first tried to get into the home of Emma McCollers who had two young daughters. When the family refused to open the door Dowdy fired his gun. This caused the girls to flee to another house, the home of widow Emma Tisber. The two men followed and invaded the Tisber home and attempted to assault two young black girls. When the two girls attempted to hide under the porch, Dowdy and Evans began ripping up the floor to get to them. Washington, a black man, attempted to defend the girls and get the men to leave. Dowdy fired at Washington and after a struggle, Washington, who was 72 years old, shot and killed Dowdy. Washington went uptown and woke up the chief of police, Mr. Stuckey, who sent Washington to the McCrae jail at 2:00 AM May 24, 1919. There he stayed in jail until the 25th, at 12:00 PM, when a crowd of white men, led by a Baptist minister, removed Washington from the jail. To possibly hide their crimes all black residents of Milan were rounded up and ordered out of the town on the night of May 25th. At 2:00 AM on May 26th the lynch mob hung him from a post and shot him repeatedly until his body fell in pieces from the post. White residents rioted in the city, damaging and burning many black homes. They threatened black citizens, lest they dare to speak out about the events in public.