Date of Award


Degree Name



College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Michael Woods, Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Robert Deal

Third Advisor

Dr. David Trowbridge


On November 10, 1898 the city of Wilmington erupted in racial violence as the members of the white population massacred anywhere from twenty-five to a hundred of the black citizenry. The result of the Wilmington Race Riot was the reassertion of white supremacy in North Carolina and a flip in Wilmington’s population, as whites became the majority. This paper will argue that the events of the Wilmington Race Riot and Coup D’état came about from the direct interference of Wilmington’s white elite along with outside interference from Democratic Party Leaders across the state of North Carolina as well as the Red Shirts. I will also look at the long-term consequences of this white supremacy movement and how the riot was memorialized in the city of Wilmington, specifically looking at Hugh MacRae Park and comparing this park to movements around the United States to rename landmarks and remove statues dedicated to the Confederate cause. Memorialization of the riot has penetrated deep into the roots of the city of Wilmington and North Carolina as a whole and while the state continues to deal with its dark past the question of how to remember white supremacy in the state is being brought from the 19th to the 21st century.


Wilmington (N.C.) -- Race relations.

African Americans -- North Carolina -- Wilmington -- History -- 19th century.

Riots -- North Carolina -- Wilmington -- History -- 19th century.