Some have reported the June 12, 2016, killings at Pulse nightclub in Orlando as the “deadliest mass shooting in American history.” But there have been other shootings where more people were killed, including East St. Louis in 1917 - although it was not a single gunman.

In 1917, industrialists in East St. Louis countered strikes by hiring replacement workers, many of whom were black. 

On the night of July 1, 1917, shots were fired into black homes from a speeding Ford. Black men responded with a volley of gunfire toward another approaching Ford - which killed two police officers who were coming to investigate the shootings.

Their deaths sparked a vicious reaction the next day by whites, who rampaged through black neighborhoods, beating and burning blacks. The official death count was 39 blacks and nine whites, but the actual count probably was closer to 100.

Here is how the incident was covered in the Post-Dispatch, along with a condensed reprint of a story published by Carlos Hurd on July 3, 1917. The article contains graphic descriptions.