The short-lived period of Reconstruction in the former Confederacy was met with defiance, violence, and a growing sense of chaos and danger — and that powder keg exploded on Easter Sunday in 1873, when the residents of tiny Colfax, Louisiana went to war with each other.
In 1891, a mob of close to 20,000 gathered at the Henry Clay statue in downtown New Orleans to take the law into their own hands. One of the largest in history and led by a row of 100 men with shotguns, it marched to the Parish Prison to deliver its own brand of justice to 19 terrified Italians imprisoned there.
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