The Predictable Past: The York County Race Riots

Explore the major events and locations of the York County race riots.

The Predictable Past: The York County Race Riots

York, Pennsylvania 17402, United States

Created By: Kelsey Wisman

Tour Information

This walking tour recognizes historical locations that were or are significant to the York County race riots for guests to explore.

Tour Map

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What You'll See on the Tour

Welcome and thanks for joining us on this walking tour that discusses the race riots that took place in York, Pennsylvania.       Begin at the Historical Society. Play Video ...
William C. Goodridge was well known in the York community for being an entrepreneur.  The  son of an enslaved mother, he became an indentured servant.  This led to him working as an apprentice in York, PA.  Goodridge learned several t... Read more
The Rail Trail links York, Pennsylvania to Maryland.  This linked Pennsylvania's businesses, economy, and people to Maryland.  The two states became intertwined with one another, which allowed for southern ideals to travel North.     ... Read more
Throughout 1968, there were various incidents or disturbances that occurred within York that led to the 1969 riots.  Some of those events happened in William Penn, the high school that resides in York City.  For example, Dr. Levy details... Read more
Penn Park, as well as the surrounding area, was known to many York residents as a dangerous area within the city during the race riots.  There are several accounts of violent attacks with bricks, shootings, shots being fired, and vehicle d... Read more
Many residents of York can recall the National Guard tanks within the city.
After July 18, 1969, the night Officer Schaad was wounded, violence within the city continued.  The mayor, John Snyder, called for a state of emergency and imposed a curfew on July 19.  Tensions continued to build and violence ensued.  O... Read more
These two benches, one dedicated to Henry Schaad and the other for Lillie Belle Allen, are the only items within York that seek to remind the residents of York County of the race riots and the events that led to their deaths. 
This marks the location where Lillie Belle Allen was murdered on July 21, 1969.  Allen was in the car with her family visiting from South Carolina.  As the car approached the railroad tracks, the family spotted a group of white residents... Read more
After 32 years of silence, Allen and Schaad's murders were finally heard in court.  In 2001, the York County Courthouse, which was later replaced by the judicial center (see link below), heard the cases and determined the verdict.     ... Read more
1970 continued with ongoing violence that rolled over from 1968 and 1969.  However, there was hope that the white and black communities could come together to address the ongoing issues that York residents faced.  The Charrette, a council... Read more
Thank you for joining us for this walking tour! If you have any questions or concerns, please ask your guide or visit the historical society.


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