Ocoee community celebrates bill signing of July Perry Memorial Highway
OCOEE, Fla. The road between Winters Landing Drive and Clarke Road along State Road 438 will now be known as Julius July Perry Memorial Highway. Ron DeSantis signed SB-78 approving the honorary road designation that pays homage to one of the Ocoee Massacres notable victims. The event happened nearly 100 years ago when 50 Black men were shot and killed as they tried to exercise their right to vote. Mose Norman was among one of the Black men trying to get to the polls and was determined not to return home without his vote being counted. Sen. Randolph Bracy (D-Ocoee) proposed the bill to help spread the story of the Ocoee Massacre and to acknowledge the history that is woven into the towns fabric.
We will vote, by God!' How the Ocoee Massacre sparked local legislation nearly 100 years later
In just a few months, Flordia will mark 100 years since 50 Black men were shot and killed in Ocoee as they sought to exercise their right to vote, a tragic piece of history known as the Ocoee Massacre. One-by-one would-be Black voters were turned away either by threats of violence or by poll workers who found their names mysteriously absent from the voter registration rolls, ZEP reported. Pollsters instructed them to get documentation from notary public R. C. Biegelow to verify that they were indeed registered to vote. A man named Mose Norman was determined not to return home without his vote being counted, so he sought counsel from a local judge after being turned away from his Ocoee precinct. Perry was captured by the KKK, and according to the History Center, and was lynched.
Florida Senate Panel Backs Reparations for Descendants of Ocoee Massacre Victims at White Mobs Hands
Some 60 to 70 black residents of Ocoee are believed to have been murdered. This is considered the bloodiest day in American political history and it happened right in Central Florida on the presidential election day, Bracy said. In the days following this violence, the remaining African-American residents fled Ocoee, leaving their homes and property, the analysis added. After an altercation with the local constable or a group of white residents, Norman went to the home of July Perry, another African-American resident, before fleeing Ocoee. Later in the day, some white Ocoee residents formed a posse and were deputized by the Orange County Sheriff and were charged with arresting Norman and Perry.flaglerlive.com