The Spaces We Inherit0:00
This 24min sound piece has been constructed out of field recordings from various lynching sites and related locations in the United States between 2016-2017. Good earphones or speakers recommended.
For a few years in the late 1890s and early 1900s lynching exhibitions began appearing in cities across the country - including Seattle and New York - and for the first time the public could view photographs and listen to sounds of the atrocities, predominantly from the South. The most notorious was the spectacle lynching of Henry Smith in Paris, Texas in 1893. The photographs were genuine, but the sounds from the phonograph machines had been produced in the studio by notable recording artists including Silas Leachman, who recorded at least one cylinder for the Talking Machine Company of Chicago in 1899 entitled 'Burning of Smith at Paris, Texas'. For more information see Gustavus Stadler's essay Never Heard Such a Thing: Lynching and Phonographic Modernity (Duke University Press, Spring 2010).