At issue in the hearing before Oklahoma District Court Judge Caroline Wall was whether a lawsuit seeking reparations brought by survivors and descendants of the massacre, one of the worst episodes of racial violence in U.S. history, will be allowed to proceed to trial. Defendants in the landmark case, including the city of Tulsa and the regional chamber of commerce, have pushed for the case to be dismissed. Previous efforts to obtain restitution have failed. They included a 2003 suit that was blocked due to expiration of the statute of limitations. Legislation has been introduced in Congress to make it easier for the massacre claims to be pressed but its prospects are unclear.