About Alexander Manly
Alexander (or Alex) Manly (1866–1944) was an African-American newspaper editor in North Carolina in the late 19th century and a descendant of North Carolina Gov. Charles Manly.
Alexander married Caroline Sadgwar who had attended Fisk University. Caroline's father was born into slavery and her mother was a Cherokee woman.
In 1895, he became the editor of the Wilmington Daily Record, the only African-American-owned daily newspaper in the United States in its time. Manly denounced lynching in an August 1898 editorial he wrote in response to an article carried in the Wilmington Messenger that called for the lynching of African American men in an effort to maintain the purity of white womanhood. Manly's editorial was used by the state's white supremacy campaign to promote anti-black scare tactics during the 1898 elections.
Alexander Manly's newspaper office was destroyed in the 1898 Wilmington race riots on November 10, 1898. He was forced to flee the city to escape being murdered by a white mob. Manly relocated to Philadelphia. Little is definitively known about his later life, but he is known to have helped found the Armstrong Association, a forerunner of the Urban League.
There is a photograph of in the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a small collection of Manly's papers, including pictures of at least one of his two sons, at East Carolina University.