The Robert Charles riots of July 24th through the 27th, 1900 in New Orleans, Louisiana were sparked after Black laborer Robert Charles fatally shot a White police officer during an altercation and escaped arrest.
A large manhunt for him ensued, and a White mob started rioting, attacking blacks throughout the city. The manhunt for Charles began on Monday, July 23, 1900, and ended when Charles was killed on Friday, July 27, shot by a so-called special police volunteer. The mob shot him hundreds more times, and beat the body.
White rioting continued, with several blacks killed after Charles had died. A reported total of 28 people were killed in the riots, including Charles. More than 50 people were wounded in the riots, including at least 11 who had to be hospitalized. Blacks made up most of the fatalities and casualties.
Robert Charles (born in 1865) had come to New Orleans from Mississippi. He was a self-educated activist for civil rights. He believed in self-defense for the Black community and encouraged Blacks to move to Liberia to escape racial discrimination and violence.