August 30, 1921
Lawyer Edgar McHaney wired the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) with news that he had found two new witnesses to the series of events now known as the Elaine Massacre. H. F. Smiddy and T. K. Jones had testified for the prosecution in Helena (Phillips County) but now admitted to having tortured African Americans in the Helena jail and were willing to identify other such torturers by name. These allegations changed the entire direction of the trials to stem from the Elaine Massacre. The twelve men convicted of murder and sentenced to the death penalty after the incident were eventually released.