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Samuel J. Hardman Research Files on the FBI Investigation of the Moore's Ford Lynching

Samuel J. Hardman Research Files on the FBI Investigation of the Moore's Ford Lynching

Descriptive Summary

Title: Samuel J. Hardman Research Files on the FBI Investigation of the Moore's Ford Lynching
Creator: Hardman, Sammy J.
Inclusive Dates: 1946-2015
Bulk Dates: 1946-1947
Language(s): English
Extent: 0.25 gigabyte(s) (31 files)
Collection Number: RBRL/385
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: The Samuel J. Hardman Research Files on the FBI Investigation of the Moore's Ford Lynching includes researcher Hardman's redacted copies of FBI documents related to the investigation (1946-1947). Also included are files related to the 1991 reopening of the case as well as Hardman's article about the lynching.

Collection Description

Historical Note

On July 25, 1946, two African American couples, George and Mae Dorsey and Roger and Dorothy Malcolm, were murdered by a mob of white men in Walton County, Georgia. The incident, which came to be called the Moore's Ford Lynching, sparked national outrage and press coverage as well as reaction from the federal government. Upon the urging of the NAACP, President Harry Truman deployed the FBI to investigate. However, no charges were ever filed against any individuals.

Samuel J. Hardman was born near High Shoals, Walton County, Georgia, on October 11, 1942. In 1943 or 1944, Hardman's family moved to the Moore's Ford community, where he remained until 1955.

Hardman has conducted extensive research on and written about the Moore's Ford Lynching and its implications for personal, family and Georgia history. His interest in the case stems from his close proximity to the murders – the victims were killed near his childhood home – and the number of family relations involved in the initial investigation. His father was questioned twice about the lynching but would not speak about it with him. One of his earliest memories of the murders is hearing his sister crying about the death of Dorothy Malcolm. He was also aware of the long-term impact that the murders had on women and African Americans and the influence of the Ku Klux Klan in his community.

Hardman was educated privately in music and art history. His work is noted in the following standard reference volumes: Anthony van Dyck, Arthur Wheelock et al.; Van Dyck: A Complete Catalogue of Paintings, Sir Oliver Millar et al.; The Paintings of Anthony van Dyck, Erik Larsen; An Encyclopedia of British Women Writers; The Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Writers; The Margaret Mitchell Encyclopedia; and Carolina Clay: The Life and Legend of the Slave Potter Dave, Leonard Todd.

Hardman currently resides in Commerce, Georgia.

Sources: Beck, E. M., and Stewart E. Tolnay. "Lynching." New Georgia Encyclopedia. 11 December 2015. Web. 15 December 2015.; Hardman, Samuel J. "Moore's Ford Records: Biographical Note for the Russell Library, Athens, Georgia." 11 November 2015.

Scope and Content

The bulk of the collection is composed of files Hardman requested from the FBI that document the agency's investigation of the Moore's Ford lynching. The files include copies of investigation summaries, witness accounts, interviews with suspects, evidence reports on the bullets and other materials found at the crime scene, internal correspondence about the investigation's progress, clippings from local newspapers, and correspondence from citizens concerned about the case. The majority of the files date from the initial 1946-1947 investigation, but also included are files from 1991 when the case was reopened after a new witness came forward. The FBI redacted the files prior to Hardman's receipt. Also included in the collection is an article written by Hardman based on his review of the FBI files.

Organization and Arrangement

The collection is arranged chronologically.

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

This collection only contains digital files. To access these files, please request the folders you would like through the finding aid using your research account. An archivist will be in contact with you to explain how to access the files.

Preferred citation

Samuel J. Hardman Research Files on the FBI Investigation of the Moore's Ford Lynching, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

Conditions Governing Use

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

Copyright Information

Before material from collections at the Richard B. Russell Library may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part, in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property, and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain both sets of permissions. Persons wishing to quote from materials in the Russell Library collection should consult the Director. Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding Aid prepared by Mat Darby, 2015.

Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

African Americans -- Crimes against -- Georgia -- Walton County.
Ku Klux Klan (1915- ) -- Georgia -- Walton County.
Lynching -- Georgia -- Walton County.
Racism -- Georgia.
United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Walton County (Ga.) -- Race relations.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing


[FBI File on the Investigation] [digital files]

ER 1[FBI File on the Investigation] [digital files], 1946-1947

[FBI File on the Investigation] [digital files]

ER 2[FBI File on the Investigation] [digital files], 1991

["Moore's Ford Lynching Investigation" by Samuel J. Hardman] [digital files]

ER 3["Moore's Ford Lynching Investigation" by Samuel J. Hardman] [digital files], 2015