Emmett, a 14-year-old Chicago boy visiting family in Mississippi in 1955, was brutally murdered after reportedly flirting with a white woman in a country store.
The woman — Carolyn Bryant — reportedly told her husband and brother that Emmett had groped her, made crude remarks, and wolf-whistled at Carolyn.
Despite the pleas of his Mississippi family, Roy Bryant and Milam reportedly forced Emmett into their waiting vehicle and drove him down to the Tallahatchie River, where they reportedly forced the teen to carry a 75-pound cotton gin fan.
When they arrived at the river’s bank, Bryant and Milam reportedly told Emmett to disrobe, and they purportedly began to beat him profusely and gouged out one of Emmett’s eyes.
According to History, author Tim Tyson — who wrote 2017’s “The Blood of Emmett Till” — wrote that Carolyn Bryant later recanted her testimony, and said that young Emmett had never touched, harassed, or threatened her at all.