Local

Neo-Nazi activity is increasing in Boston. Here’s a timeline of recent events.

NSC 131, a neo-Nazi group based in New England, most recently made headlines for protesting a drag queen story hour in Jamaica Plain.

Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff
A sign seen at a July demonstration organized by Solidarity Against Hate in Jamaica Plain. Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff

Experts agree: white supremacism is becoming more prominent in Boston and the surrounding areas. Spurred by groups like Patriot Front and NSC 131, hateful propaganda, flash demonstrations, and full-on marches have captured the attention of residents and officials alike. 

Massachusetts had the fourth highest levels of hate propaganda activity in America last year, according to a report released this spring by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The Bay State only fell behind Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Texas on this front. Racist and antisemitic flyers, banners, and stickers are the usual ways in which these groups spread their messaging to the public. 

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In 2021, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) tracked 14 hate groups in Massachusetts. Patriot Front, the group that marched through Boston in early July and allegedly assaulted a Black activist, was found by the ADL to be most active in five particular states, including Massachusetts. Nationally, Patriot Front was behind more than 82 percent of propaganda incidents. 

Neo-Nazi activity in Boston

While Patriot Front is more prominent nationally, much of the local activity is organized by NSC 131, whose message is more explicitly in line with Nazi ideology. Members of the group “see themselves as soldiers at war with a hostile, Jewish-controlled system that is deliberately plotting the extinction of the white race,” according to the ADL.

The group has made several appearances in Boston, along with scores of demonstrations in other New England states.

NSC 131 recently made headlines in late July, when the group demonstrated outside a community center in Jamaica Plain where a children’s drag queen story hour was taking place. Chris Hood, who leads the group, was arrested.

Below is a timeline of recent, notable NSC 131 activity in the city from May 2021 through July 2022. The information included comes from the ADL, reporting from Boston.com, and Waltham Night’s Watch, an organization that documents hate groups, hate crimes, and far-right activity

Neo-Nazi activity in Boston

  • Sunday, May 23

    About 10 members of NSC 131 demonstrate outside the New England Holocaust Memorial in Boston on May 23, 2021.

  • Saturday, October 16

    On October 16, 2021, about eight people associated with NSC 131 hold a banner over an overpass in Cambridge that reads “refugees not welcome.”

  • Saturday, November 13

    About 20 people associated with NSC 131 protest outside the Lucy Parsons Center on November 13, 2021. The Lucy Parsons Center is an independent, progressive bookstore and community space in Jamaica Plain.

  • Saturday, January 22
    John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

    About two dozen people associated with NSC 131 gather outside Brigham and Women’s Hospital holding a banner that reads “B and W Hospital Kills Whites” on January 22, 2022. Flyers were handed out with the images of two Brigham and Women’s doctors condemning them for so-called “preferential health care policies for non-white patients.”

  • Saturday, February 12

    About 20 people associated with NSC 131 hang banners from a pedestrian bridge in Boston that read “Reds out of Boston,” “White lives matter” and “White patience has limits” on February 12, 2022.

  • Saturday, March 12

    About 12 people associated with NSC 131 stage demonstrations in multiple locations around the Boston metro area on March 12, 2022. Messages displayed include “Defend New England,” “White Lives Matter,” and “Join Your Local Anti-Antifa Crew.”

  • Sunday, March 20
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    About 20 people wearing NSC 131 insignia appeared along the route of South Boston’s St. Patrick’s Day parade on March 20, 2022. They displayed a banner with the words “keep Boston Irish,” along with the NSC 131 logo. Another member waved a flag bearing the white supremacist version of the Celtic Cross.

  • Saturday, May 7

    A group associated with NSC 131 gather at Park St. Station in downtown Boston on May 7, 2022. They displayed a banner and handed out flyers that read “Gangs of Blacks are attacking elderly and female white people in and around downtown Boston.” This could have been in response to reports of teenagers assaulting people in the area.

  • Saturday, July 23

    A group of about 20 NSC 131 members gather outside the Loring Greenough House in Jamaica Plain to protest a children’s drag queen story hour happening inside on July 23, 2022. They display a banner that reads “Pedo scum off our streets.” Christopher Hood, leader of NSC 131, is arrested and charged with affray.