Was the Augusta riot worth it? Fifty years after the uprising, we look at the societal changes that it sparked, and what the Civil Rights Movement looks like today.
In 1970, what happened in Augusta was actually part of a larger national story as campuses across the country were shut down due to protests.
We look at the days, months, and years after the 1970 Augusta riot. With families of "The Augusta Six" demanding justice, activism was at an all-time high. As white Augustans braced themselves for the possibility of more violence, Black activists worked for more immediate change.
In this bonus episode of Shots in the Back, students from the Jessye Norman School of the Arts, who have been working on this podcast, share their fears about racism.
Inside the chaos of the uprising, Black and white leaders were trying to quell the violence. As rioters set fire to white-owned businesses, police officers were told to shoot to kill. In this episode, we tell the stories of the six Black men killed by white police officers. The victims, who were all shot in the back, would go down in history as The Augusta Six.
In this timeline of the 48-hour uprising in Augusta, we chart its chronological and geographic path. We hear about rioters who targeted Chinese-owned businesses, while police in armored personnel carriers patrolled the streets. The National Guard also surrounded Paine College, a historically black college.
A listener reaches out to share his memories of Charlie Oatman. Fred McBrayer was a vocational rehabilitation counselor in Augusta, who worked with Oatman at his high school.
Why were Black Augustans so angry about Charles Oatman's death? Because it was a symbol for the myriad of other injustices and oppressions that they have dealt with everyday. This episode weaves together seemingly isolated issues that together stymied the progress and equality of Augusta's Black citizens.
Students from the Jessye Norman School of the Arts reflect on what they learned in the first episode of the podcast about Charles Oatman’s 1970 death in a Richmond County jail. They also draw on comparisons to Sandra Bland, who died in a Texas jail cell in 2015.