Then and now pictures of Bryant’s Grocery, made infamous by the Emmett Till Case. After flirting with, whistling at, or touching the hand or waist of the white woman working in the store, Emmett Till was later picked up in the dead of night by white men, and his mutilated body was found days later.
On the evening of August 24, 1955, Emmett Till went with his cousins and some friends to Bryant’s Grocery for refreshments after picking cotton in the hot sun. The boys went into the store one or two at a time to buy soda pop or bubble gum. Emmett walked in and bought two cents’ worth of bubble gum. Though exactly what happened next is uncertain; Emmett flirted with, whistled at, or touched the hand or waist of Carolyn. She stormed out of the store. The kids outside said she was going to get a pistol. Frightened, Emmett and his group left.
At about 2:30 a.m. on August 28, under the cover of darkness, the two white men showed up at the home of Moses Wright, Emmett Till’s uncle, where Emmett was staying, and took him away. Wright said he saw a person in the car, possibly Carolyn, who helped identify Emmett. The boy’s corpse would be found several days later, disfigured and decomposing in the Tallahatchie River. Moses Wright could identify the body only by an initialed ring, which had belonged to Emmett’s father, Louis Till. [source]
For further reading and research, see also:
Death of Innocence: The Story of the Hate Crime That Changed America by Mamie Till-Mobley and Christopher Benson. [book link]