THE LYNCHING OF ROBERT PAUL PRAGER
On April 5, 1918 German immigrant Robert Prager was lynched in Collinsville. This happened at the height of anti-German hysteria during World War I as well as virulent anti-immigrant sentiment in the southern Illinois coalfields (Collinsville was a major coal town). In April 2020 a historical marker was placed at the site of the tragedy.
(Photo: Illinois Heritage magazine, July-August 2020)
“The lynching of Robert Prager, the United Mine Workers, and the problems of patriotism in 1918” by E. A. Schwartz (in Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, vol. 95, no. 4, pp. 414-437). This is available online: https://www.jstor.org/stable/40193598?seq=1
The Illinois State Museum website has a very interesting article about this terrible event: http://www.museum.state.il.us/RiverWeb/landings/Ambot/Archives/vignettes/government/Prager.html Labor, Loyalty, and Rebellion: Southwestern Illinois Coal Miners and World War I, by Carl R. Weinberg (Southern Illinois University Press, 2005).
NPR produced an oral report in 2017: https://www.npr.org/2017/04/06/522903398/lynching-of-robert-prager-underlined-anti-german-sentiment-during-world-war-i