Panoramic photograph from American Red Cross album of Tulsa following the massacre of 1921.

Records of the American National Red Cross. Photo Album of the Tulsa Massacre and Aftermath, 12/1921. National Archives Identifier 157688056, image 79.

The Tulsa Massacre of 1921 was one of the worst instances of mass racial violence in American history. The violence centered on Tulsa’s Greenwood District (also known as “Black Wall Street”), a commercial area with many successful Black-owned businesses. In 24 hours, hundreds were killed, thousands displaced, and 35 city blocks were burned to ruins. The attack on Black Wall Street included the first aerial bombing of a U.S. city.

Photograph from American Red Cross album of a street scene in Tulsa following the massacre of 1921. People are standing near rubble of buildings
Records of the American National Red Cross. Photo Album of the Tulsa Massacre and Aftermath, 12/1921. National Archives Identifier 157688056, image 60.

The American National Red Cross provided relief to many victims of this massacre. The Tulsa Chapter compiled reports and a photo album relating to their management of the disaster relief effort. The Red Cross photo album, available in the National Archives Catalog, shows riot scenes, devastated areas, National Guard troops, destroyed homes, dead victims, and massacre survivors in temporary housing.

Please note that some images in the Red Cross album are graphic and viewers might find them disturbing for racial violence.

Black and white photographs from the American Red Cross photo album. Two pictures show a man standing by a temporary tent shelter
Records of the American National Red Cross. Photo Album of the Tulsa Massacre and Aftermath, 12/1921. National Archives Identifier 157688056, image 35.
Black and white photograph of a man performing a medical exam on another man while three women look on
Records of the American National Red Cross. Photo Album of the Tulsa Massacre and Aftermath, 12/1921. National Archives Identifier 157688056, image 12.

In remembrance of the 100th Anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre, Netisha Currie, an archives specialist at the National Archives, curated the a recent Featured Document Display.

Typed report from American Red Cross director describing the relief effort after the Tulsa Race Massacre
Typed report from American Red Cross director describing the relief effort after the Tulsa Massacre

Oklahoma, Tulsa Co. Riot Reports and Statistics. This file unit contains reports, statistical reports, and a photographic album relating to the Red Cross' management of the disaster relief effort after the Tulsa massacre, or race riot, of May 31-June 1, 1921. National Archives Identifier 157670060

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