Reginald Moore Sugar Land Convict Leasing System research collection
This collection includes audio testimony by Reginald Moore to the Texas State Board of Education on convict leasing in Texas and its treatment within Texas history textbooks, as well as a video of an event on Memorial Day in 2018 honoring the Sugar Land 95.
Reginald Moore, who was an historian, a community activist, and founder of the Texas Slave Descendants Society, served in the Texas Department of Corrections in the 1980s. As a result he became interested in the brutal convict leasing program of the Texas prison system, which leased prisoners to private companies as workers. Moore worked to gain recognition for the past abuses associated with Sugar Land’s convict leasing system.
The unmarked cemetery containing the bodies of the Sugar Land 95 was found in the area that Moore predicted based on his knowledge of area history. Archeologists determined that the individuals buried at the site were convicts who were leased by the state to provide cheap convict labor to a local plantation, following the national abolition of slavery. The deceased were reinterred in November 2019.
The original materials are held by the Woodson Research Center in Fondren Library. Search the finding aid/inventory for the Reginald Moore Sugar Land Convict Leasing System research collection, MS 636.