Two people attended Halloween parties in Chautauqua County while wearing blackface, resulting in the forced resignation of the commander of the local American Legion post.
The national American Legion denounced the costumes and started the investigation that resulted in the removal of the commander, The Buffalo News reported Saturday.
"The pair attended parties at the Legion's Samuel L. Derby Post No. 556 and the Carroll Rod and Gun Club, both in Frewsburg, while dressed as stereotypical 'lawn jockeys,' with face coverings and gloves that darkened their skin. Images of the costumes spread online following the parties, drawing outrage," the newspaper reported.
While the American Legion took action, the gun club claimed the photos were "taken out of context."
The men who wore the costumes resigned from the Sons of the American Legion.
"The two attendees, who haven't been publicly identified, wore white dress shirts and pants; red vests and jockey caps; and yellow scarves. They wore thin black gloves on their hands and held lanterns. And they either painted their faces black or wore tight-fitting black masks," the newspaper wrote. "Jockeys stood on lawns in this country for more than a century, with the statues often bearing exaggerated African American features."
The newspaper noted the Carroll Rod and Gun Club made it's Facebook page inaccessible to the public after an outcry.
Read the full report.
Editor's Note: The author of this story is a member of the Sons of the American Legion.