Jan 26, 2022

The Dana Adams Project 1893: A First Thursday presentation

Posted Jan 26, 2022 1:02 PM
Image courtesy Smoky Hill Museum
Image courtesy Smoky Hill Museum


History is sometimes inspiring and sometimes heartbreaking. The 1893 lynching of Dana Adams is a difficult part of Salina’s history, but one that needs to be understood, according to a news release from the Smoky Hill Museum.

Adams was one of four Black men ordered to leave the Union Pacific train depot early on the morning of April 20, 1893, according to information in the Salina Daily Republican. Adams argued with the janitor who ordered the men out of the depot. During a fight between the two, Adams allegedly cut the janitor with a razor.

Adams was taken to jail.

The sheriff, who had heard rumors about people wanting to lynch Adams, put Adams on a train headed to Leavenworth, however, the train sat at the station long enough that someone uncoupled the car that Adams was in, leaving it stationary on the tracks as the train pulled away.

A crowd of people overpowered the sheriff and his deputies and dragged Adams from the train to a telegraph pole near the Union Pacific depot and hanged him.

No one was ever arrested for the lynching.

Join Sandy Beverly and the Rev. Dr. Martha Murchison as they share about the lynching of Dana Adams and its aftermath. They’ll also discuss the Dana Adams Project 1893, its goals of release and healing, and what’s next for the project. Beverly and Murchison, along with the Rev. Delores J. Williamston, are coalition members who work in collaboration with the Equal Justice Initiative.

The Smoky Hill Museum will host this free presentation from 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Feb. 3 via a Zoom presentation. Please register at smokyhillmuseum.org to receive the Zoom link. The presentation will also be on Facebook Live, the museum noted in the news release.