“It is not that I dwell on the past. But the past shapes the way we are in the present and the way we will become what we are destined to become.” from “Death of Innocence: The Story of the Hate Crime that Changed America”
Mamie Till-Mobley (November 23, 1921–January 6, 2003) was an American educator and activist and the mother of Emmett Till, who was lynched in Mississippi at the age of 14 for allegedly flirting with a White woman. For his funeral in Chicago, Mamie Till Mobley insisted that her son’s casket be left open because, in her words, “I wanted the world to see what they did to my baby.” Her boldness helped expose the horrors of lynching in the South and helped jump-start the civil rights movement. She went on to be an educator, speaker, and activist until her death. The Chicago home where she raised Emmett gained national landmark status in February 2020.
This Black History Month, join ZORA in celebrating the Black women who changed the world through their activism, their talents, and their bravery.