Interracial Couple Fights for Right to Stay in Town

A white supremacist attempts to kick out the sole black man in Leith, N.D.

Bobby and Sherrill Harper (inset box); Paul Craig Cobb (screenshot/CNN)
Bobby and Sherrill Harper (inset box); Paul Craig Cobb (screenshot/CNN)

In a town as small as Leith, N.D. (population: 16), Bobby and Sherrill Harper stick out like sore thumbs, Bobby especially. They are the town’s only interracial couple, and Bobby is the only black man. But according to CNN, one Leith resident, Paul Craig Cobb, thinks Bobby is one black person too many.

Paul Craig Cobb wants to transform the town 70 miles southwest of Bismarck into a community that mirrors his white supremacist views. He did so quietly at first, asking residents whether their land was for sale.

The Harpers have received messages echoing Cobb’s sentiments, including one letter that was written to Sherrill Harper specifically.

The Harpers have felt their wrath, including a letter they received Friday that read, in part: “I want you to leave your “husband” and go join Mr. Cobb’s movement. Do it now! Separation of the races forever!”

The target of that missive, Sherrill Harper, says that’s just one of many she’s received calling her a “filthy, race-mixing white woman” and “pea-brained.”

But the husband and wife maintain they aren’t leaving Leith anytime soon.

“I have roots in this town,” she told CNN’s John Berman on Friday night, alongside Bobby. “I have a reason to be here.”

Sherill Harper recalls running into Cobb last year and he asked her if she had property for sale. She said no.

Bobby Harper said Cobb asked him the same question.