Remembering Dennis Hubert 

As the State Board of Education battles with the complexities of Critical Race Theory, the Atlanta Board of Education and The Equal Justice Community Remembrance Project (The Fulton County Remembrance Coalition) have a partner to remember a hidden history. A historical remembrance marker for Dennis Hubert was unveiled  Wednesday, August 17, on the playground of the former Crogman School, now Atlanta College and Career Academy, located in the Pittsburg Community.

Hubert and Wheatley family, Mrs. Billie Aaron at the unveiling of the Dennis Hubert Historical marker

On June 15, 1930, a mob of seven white men lynched a young Black man named Dennis Hubert on the playground of Atlanta’s segregated Crogman School which served Black children. Dennis Hubert was 18 years old and a Divinity School student in his sophomore year at Morehouse College at the time of his death. The mob attacked Mr. Hubert around 6:00 pm, mistaking him for someone who had allegedly insulted a white woman in the park earlier that day. Eyewitnesses reported that Mr. Hubert asked the mob, “What do you want from me? I have done nothing.” Fifteen minutes later, the white men held a gun to the back of Mr. Hubert’s head and shot him at point-blank range. 

Because Mr. Hubert was the son of one of Atlanta’s prominent Black families, the cold-blooded and terrorizing, lynching sent shock waves throughout Fulton County, soliciting an unusual response. Seven white men were eventually arrested and indicted for the lynching. But, even with confessions and two dozen eyewitnesses, the seven men were acquitted of murder, and only two were convicted of lesser offenses. One newspaper stated that the minimal sentencing of only two years for the white man who shot Dennis Hubert in the head showed “just how cheaply the life of a Negro is held, no matter what his station in life may be when a white man takes it.”

Hubert’s mother, Mrs. Pearl M. Hurbert, was a teacher at Summerhill Public School and Young Street Evening School under C.L. Harper before becoming one of the former APS principals at Crogman School from 1924 until she died in 1942.

More than 4,400 African Americans were lynched across 20 states between the end of Reconstruction in 1877 and 1950. The Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) has documented 594 African American victims of racial terror lynching killed In Georgia, with 36 of those victims dying in Fulton County – the highest recorded number in Georgia and one of the highest in the country.

EJI established the Community Remembrance Project (CRP) to partner with community coalitions to memorialize victims of racial violence and foster meaningful dialogue about the legacy of racial terror and injustice. Coalitions can utilize the research and findings of EJI to engage their communities in giving voice to the experiences of lynching and their legacies.

As an official community partner of EJI, FCRC aims to recognize and remember the 36 documented victims of racial terror lynching in Fulton County. 

Credit: This article is one of a series of articles produced by The Atlanta Voice through support provided by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to Word In Black, a collaborative of 10 Black-owned media outlets across the country.