Delaware removes whipping post outside courthouse

The Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs removed a whipping post that has been displayed on the grounds of the Old Sussex County Courthouse.

(CNN)An old whipping post that was used "disproportionally on Blacks" was removed from outside the Old Sussex County Courthouse in Georgetown, Delaware, a state official said Wednesday.

"It is certainly overdue and should have been done a long time ago," said Doug Denison, spokesman for the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs (DDHCA).
The last use of a whipping post in Delaware was in 1952, according to the state.
This post was used to whip people as young as 10, and was used on some White and Black men who committed crimes of burglaries or other crimes. If women were whipped, it was Black women only, said David Young, executive director of the Delaware Historical Society.
    Delaware was the last state to abolish the use of a whipping post, and the penalty wasn't removed from state law until 1972, a DDHCA news release said.
    The post was installed on the public courthouse grounds in 1993. It will be moved and placed in a storage facility with other historical objects and artifacts. This is the last Delaware whipping post to be removed.
    The whipping post was originally located on the grounds of the Sussex Correctional Institution south of Georgetown, according to a news release. While the facility was established in 1931, it is unknown when this whipping post was installed.
    "The decision to remove the whipping post was made in response to calls from the community and in recognition of the violence and racial discrimination that its display signified to many Delawareans," the state news release said.
      For a single offense, people could be lashed up to 40 times. The whipping post was part of the spectacle punishment used in Delaware at the time, Young said.
      "I know people who have seen people whipped at that whipping post and have never forgot it," Young said.