Protesting and violence related to socioeconomic and racial tensions is not new in U. S. History. Protests against the draft were not unique to the Vietnam War, nor were draft laws that privileged families of wealth. In July 1863 mobs of working-class New Yorkers, predominantly Irish, rose up to protest the call to risk their lives in support of enslaved Black people in the south. Feeling no stake in the war; fearing competition in the labor market from freedmen; and unable to buy their way out of the draft, angry mobs went on a five-day rampage. A colored orphanage was set on fire; boardinghouses and tenements where people of color lived were burned. Eleven Black men were lynched. Learn more about this tragic war-within-a-war fought in America’s preeminent northern city.