Monument honors 1922 Herrin Massacre victims - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Monument honors 1922 Herrin Massacre victims

HERRIN, IL (KFVS) - A monument has been put in place at the Herrin City Cemetery to honor the 1922 Herrin Massacre victims.

Herrin city leaders say about five years of research has gone into exploring what occurred 93 years ago, and also finding the victims.

Twenty-two people died in a confrontation with union and non-union miners in June of 1922.

Seventeen of those victims were not claimed at the time. They were buried an area of the Herrin City Cemetery set aside as a potter's field.

Unmarked graves in what was the potter's field for pauper burial in Herrin had been sold for future burials, even the plots containing the bodies of men killed back in 1922 in a gunfight between union and non-union miners. 

The city has worked for the past several years to right the wrongs of the past by respecting the final resting place of those in unmarked graves and even relocating family members whose final wishes were to be buried next to family.

Seventeen names are on the memorial to remember the lives lost. It's a recognition that some say has been long overdue.

"There's a lot of history here in this cemetery and there's families that come through this town that there's never been a marker for that grave site or anything else," Steve Miller, Herrin alderman, said. "So now, at least now, their family can stop and say at least the city and the citizens of Herrin have at lease made an effort to mark the graves."

A dedication is scheduled for June 25 at the memorial to honor those that were killed in the 1922 Herrin Massacre.

Download the KFVS News app: iPhone | Android

Copyright 2015 KFVS. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly