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TO ERECT A HISTORICAL MARKER IN LAKE CITY AS A MEMORIAL TO FRAZIER B. BAKER, POSTMASTER OF LAKE CITY IN 1898, WHO WAS A VICTIM OF A MOB LYNCHING, WHICH RESULTED IN THE UNTIMELY DEATH OF MR. BAKER AND HIS TWO-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER, JULIA BAKER.
Whereas, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in this country, lynching was used as a way of denying African-Americans their civil rights; and
Whereas, between the years 1880 and 1947, one hundred eighty-six people were lynched in South Carolina, all but eight of whom were black; and
Whereas, lynching not only meant hanging but it also encompassed the taking of an individual's life by a mob in a variety of ways, including shooting, burning, and mutilating; and
Whereas, Frazier B. Baker, in 1898, was appointed Postmaster of Lake City, South Carolina, by the federal government; and
Whereas, some white residents of Lake City were particularly unhappy with this appointment and burned down the post office in protest as a warning to Mr. Baker; and
Whereas, despite the worry that he had for the safety of his family and himself, Mr. Baker courageously kept his position and became a role model for many African-American residents of the town of Lake City; and
Whereas, on February 22, 1898, at about one o'clock in the morning, Frazier B. Baker's home in Lake City, which adjoined the post office at the time, was set ablaze by a mob of white citizens of the county, who were upset because of Mr. Baker's unwillingness to see himself as inferior because of his race; and
Whereas, on that February morning, Mr. Baker attempted to escape the flames with his wife and their six children, but they were stopped by a mob, which stood outside the doors of their home and fired guns at them; and
Whereas, while Mrs. Lavinia Baker and the couple's five oldest children luckily survived the fire and the bullets, Mr. Baker and two-year-old daughter, Julia, fell victim to the violent individuals who surrounded them; and
Whereas, this tragic event and the loss of an influential South Carolinian should be memorialized by the people of this State. Now, therefore,
Be it resolved by the Senate, the House of Representatives concurring:
That the members of the South Carolina General Assembly, by this resolution, wish to have a historical marker erected in Lake City as a memorial to Frazier B. Baker, Postmaster of Lake City in 1898, who was a victim of a mob lynching, which resulted in the untimely death of Mr. Baker and his two-year-old daughter, Julia Baker, and urge local officials and citizens to study the feasibility of establishing this marker.
Be it further resolved that this resolution be forwarded to the public officials of Lake City.
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