Throughout the Jim Crow era which led to the rise of civil rights movements in America, it was made a crime for Blacks to be seen in areas that were marked strictly for white people. It was in such areas that Black people received an acid bath while they were in a swimming pool of a former Monson Motor Lodge pool, in Florida.
Before the acid incident at the pool of the Monson Motor Lodge, Martin Luther King Jr was arrested for trespassing at the lodge and asked to vacate the restaurant which was reserved for only whites. This was on the 11th of June, 1964.
The arrest of Martin Luther King Jr aggravated the already protesting civil rights activists. The activists after making adequate plans went to the Monson Motor Lodge and jumped into the pool, with the intention of ending the segregation at the pool of the Lodge. They were made up of blacks and whites. The white civil rights members paid for the rooms and then went ahead to invite their Black comrades to join them in the pool.
Information gathered revealed that the swim-in was planned by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and two of his associates in the civil, rights movement.
Once they were inside the pool, the hotel manager out of anger tried to stop them. He poured a bottle of muriatic acid into the pool so that it would scare the swimmers to jump out.
The swimmers got scared that it would burn their skin. Some made way to escape while others were reluctant to escape, having in mind the acid to water ratio. One swimmer went as far as drinking the water to pacify others who were already scared and panicking.
Many have thought: what if the acid was very corrosive and had burnt the skin of every protester in that pool? What kind of man was the hotel manager? Did he hate African-American Americans that much that he was willing to give them an acid bath just for crossing a white-reserved area?
There are many unanswered questions when it comes to the event of that day. Many have said that the hotel manager was placed in the middle of a constant battle between Southern Segregation Democrats and the Civil Rights protesters.
The Reason For The Segregation
After slavery was abolished in America, whites could not come to stand living equally with the Africans whom they had enslaved for over 400 years. They wanted to have separate communities and exist far away from the formerly enslaved Africans. So they created Jim Crow Laws, which were a collection of state and local statutes that legalized the social bullying and segregation of Black people.
The Jim crow era lasted for about 100 years, spanning from after the civil war to 1968 when it came to an end, as a result of the resilience of Black rights activists.
The Laws targeted African Americans and denied them the right to hold jobs, vote, get proper education and other opportunities. The laws were backed by the full strength of White-America. Black people who attempted to go against the Jim Crow Laws were arrested, made to pay fines, jailed and even killed through violent means.