Nearly 160 years ago, George Marshall Clark became Milwaukee’s only lynching victim. Now, a respectful grave marker is planned.
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By: La Risa R. Lynch, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
“It took Tyrone MackLee Randle Jr., two days to find it.
The 28-year-old artist and activist, along with two friends, combed Section 17 in the city’s largest and oldest cemetery looking for the final resting place of George Marshall Clark.
In the early morning hours of Sept. 8, 1861, Clark became Milwaukee’s only lynching victim. Clark was hastily buried that day in Forest Home Cemetery, somewhere in Section 17, a grassy knoll now dotted with 200-year-old trees. He was 24 years old, according to cemetery records.
Tyrone Randle is leading the efforts to get a headstone here at the unmarked grave of George Marshall Clark at the Forest Home Cemetery. Clark, of Milwaukee who was Black, was lynched on Sept. 8, 1861, at the northwest corner of Buffalo and Water streets in Milwaukee.
Angela Peterson / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
“”Randle set up a GoFundMe page and used social media to raise awareness about Clark’s short life and tragic death. The nonprofit arm of Forest Home Cemetery included the effort in its yearly fundraising initiatives.
They plan to dedicate the new marker on Sept. 8, 2021, the 160th anniversary of Clark’s burial at Forest Home. For now, an ornate shepherd’s hook from Randle’s partner’s yardmarks Clark’s grave.
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