The Ethel Ray Nance Story

Karen Nance — author, public speaker and attorney — is the granddaughter of civil rights activist Ethel Ray Nance, who was part of one of the few biracial families in Duluth in 1920. The family lived just four blocks from the site of the 1920 lynchings of Elias Clayton, Elmer Jackson and Isaac McGhie.

After the lynchings, Karen Nance’s great grandfather William Henry Ray started the first NAACP Chapter in Duluth and her grandmother Ethel Ray Nance was able to convince W.E.B. DuBois to speak at St. Mark’s African Methodist Episcopal Church to support the effort.

In this video by DanSan Creatives, Henry Banks interviews Nance about her grandmother’s experiences and her upcoming book, The Duluth Lynchings: A Family Perspective.

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