In the small mill town of Alcolu, South Carolina, George Stinney, Jr. was born October 21, 1929. He had an older brother named Johnnie and a younger sister, Amie. At the age of 14 George was accused of killing two white girls as they picked wild flowers in March of 1944 and 84 days later he was executed in the electric chair.
George was under five feet tall and weighed less than 100 pounds and on June 14, 1944 he became the youngest person in modern times to be put to death. His trial lasted two hours and the deliberations lasted just 10 minutes.
in 2014, 70 years later, George Stinney, Jr. was exonerated and in December 2014 the Washington Post wrote a compelling article about this little boy from Alcolu who was railroaded by an unfair justice system. I found his story so compelling and his image haunting, that I created two paintings in his honor.
The first, George Stinney, Jr. 1944 is depicted in vibrant color against the lifeless stark gray background and uniform. Click on the painting and it will link to the Washington Post article.
And the second painting, St. George of South Carolina is depicted as a religious icon with symbolic gold to represent the radiance of Heaven and blue as the color of human life. Icons were originally used as teaching tools and I see George patiently asking for thought and prayer in 2015.
Karyn Healey is an oil painter in the lowcountry of South Carolina working on figurative, landscape, and architectural paintings in a variety of styles.