A civil rights marker about Emmett Till on the Mississippi Freedom Trail has been vandalized twice in the past two months, according to the firm that manages the trail. "Vandals have been around since the beginning of time".
Till, 14, was lynched in 1955 by white vigilantes, one of whom accused Till of wolf-whistling at his wife in a local grocery store.
The shopkeeper's husband Roy Bryant and his half-brother J.W. Milam were acquitted of the murder by a jury entirely composed of white people, but later confessed to the crime.
In October, another historical marker where Till's body was found was riddled with bullets.
The site marker close to the river has reportedly been shot at for years, with one Twitter post dating back to 2013 showing some bullet holes.
The marker was scratched with a blunt tool in May, and over the past week, a tour group discovered further damage. After Emmett Till Memorial Highway was dedicated along a 32-mile stretch of USA 49 East in 2006, vandals painted "KKK" on the Emmett Till highway sign.
When Till's body was discovered, his mother, Mamie Till Mobley, demanded an open-casket funeral to show the world the savagery of Southern racism.
Till was tortured and killed, and his death and the acquittal of two white men put on trial for his murder galvanized the civil rights movement. In 2008, Till's accuser told Timothy Tyson - a professor at Duke University, who wrote the book "The Blood of Emmett Till", - that she fabricated significant portions of her story about her interaction with Till.
According to Hammons, the Freedom Trail marker commemorating Till cost more than $8,000, and its repairs will cost at least $500. But students from St. Louis tried to fix the sign by adding their own drawings and writings about Till, reports The Clarion-Ledger. "It's not a defacing, but an erasing", the the Emmett Till Memory Project's Davis Houck told The Jackson Clarion-Ledger.