Race riots erupted across the nation from late spring through the early fall of 1919. In dozens of incidents of racial violence, African Americans were beaten, terrorized, and murdered. The NAACP appealed to President Wilson to investigate the attacks, but federal and local governments did little to address the violence.
The first issue of the Crisis, the magazine of the NAACP, was published in November 1910. W. E. B. Du Bois became editor of the magazine, using it as a platform to denounce racism, promote the artistic works of black Americans, and call attention to the discrimination and violence faced by black Americans.