Sandra Bland and the Long History of Racism in Waller County, Texas

Waller County, Texas, has had a complicated racial history since the days when it was a part of Mexico. At one of its first settlements, Bernardo Plantation, about 100 slaves grew cotton on  a large farm on the banks of the Brazos. Yet in the years before Texas fought Mexico for its independence, the area became a magnet for free blacks from elsewhere in the South who sought a welcoming home.

The messy, confusing double legacy of that history has persisted to the present, most recently...

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