Rowan County, NC

Alleged offense: N/A
Race: Black
Gender: Female
Age: 59
Legal intervention (in alleged offense): N/A
Legal intervention (following lynching): No
Mob size: Unreported
Mob members: None named
Alleged victim: N/A
Household Status: Married
Occupation: Tenant Farmer

An African American woman Laura Wood, aged 59 (reported as 65 and 60 by newspaper coverage, 59 by coroner), was found hanging to a tree with a plowchain near Barber’s Junction. Wood’s death became a political rallying cry in labor protests in Washington D.C. and by the International Labor Defense, which reportedly showcased the chain with which Wood was hanged in their national office.


Death certificate:
Laura Wood’s Death Certificate
Census: None found.

News coverage:
They Missed It

Woman is Lynched in North Carolina

Chain Used to Lynch Old Negro Working Woman


Town: Barber Junction, North Carolina
Latitude/Longitude: 35.687256, -80.434507
Rationale: While an exact location could not be determined, a marker was placed near Barber’s Junction, as that is the only named place in newspaper accounts of the lynching.

Additional Resources:
International Labor Defense archives may have a photo of the lyncing or the chain used in this case: http://archives.nypl.org/scm/20647#detailed

Researcher’s Note: