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Emmett Till and the Mississippi Press$
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Davis W. Houck and Matthew A. Grindy

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781934110157

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781934110157.001.0001

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“Like Father—Like Son”

“Like Father—Like Son”

(October 1955–January 1956)

(p.126) Seven “Like Father—Like Son”
Emmett Till and the Mississippi Press

Davis W. Houck

Matthew A. Grindy

Keith A. Beauchamp

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter explores the attempts to establish parallels between Louis Till and his son, Emmett. It explains that in an investigation conducted by the U.S. Senate, it was discovered that Louis Till was executed after having been found guilty of raping two Italian women and murdering a third, during the Second World War. The discovery of the circumstances of Louis Till’s death was used to justify the claims of Virgil Adams, and confirm the fears of white Mississippians: Emmett Till had attempted to rape Carolyn Bryant. The narrative provided Mississippians with something of a “like-father-like-son” reasoning, giving a retroactive interpretation of Emmett’s actions.

Keywords:   Louis Till, Emmett Till, Virgil Adams, rape, Senate, retroactive interpretation

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