ARTICLES: Slavery and Emancipation in The Journal of the Civil War Era

Edward King, The Great South (Hartford, Conn., 1875), p. 83 (Special Collections, University of Virginia Library) as shown on www.slaveryimages.org, compiled by Jerome Handler and Michael Tuite, and sponsored by the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and the University of Virginia Library. (Click image for details)
Edward King, The Great South (Hartford, Conn., 1875), p. 83 (Special Collections, University of Virginia Library) as shown on http://www.slaveryimages.org, compiled by Jerome Handler and Michael Tuite, and sponsored by the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and the University of Virginia Library. (Click image for details)

Steven Hahn. “Slave Emancipation, Indian Peoples, and the Projects of a New American Nation-State.” The Journal of the Civil War Era 3, no. 3 (2013): 307–330.

“At the very time he was drafting the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation in September 1862, President Abraham Lincoln dispatched one of his generals, John Pope, to Minnesota with orders to suppress a rebellion of the eastern, or Santee, division of the Sioux. The rebellion built on at least two decades of festering tensions that had turned relatively amicable exchange relations with British, French, and American traders—some of whom had intermarried and been incorporated into villages—into hardbitten political conflicts with various federal officials and white settlers (mostly German, Scandinavian, and Irish immigrants) who hungrily eyed the fertile and game-rich terrain of southern Minnesota. In the process, the Sioux (who in this case composed four bands and called themselves Dakotas) had ceded millions of acres, which included ancestral grounds, for a strip of reservation land along the Minnesota River, annuity payments, and supplies. Recalcitrance in the U.S. Congress along with corruption among Indian agents and traders then combined to stretch a series of treaties to the breaking point; by the 1850s, the Dakotas were under great stress and increasingly divided over how best to respond, as some of their bands faced starvation…”

Beth Barton Schweiger. “The Literate South: Reading before Emancipation.” The Journal of the Civil War Era 3, no. 3 (2013): 331–359.

“The Old South had famously few public schools, but it teemed with readers. The archives are stuffed with evidence of them. Historians cannot possibly read all the diaries, letters, half-finished novels, bad poetry, receipts, recipes, lecture notes, speeches, love letters, commonplace books, and essays these readers left behind. They filled newspaper columns with their editorials and letters, magazines with their poetry, pamphlets with their sermons, mail sacks with their letters, court dockets with their opinions, and ledger books with their figures. They have supplied enough raw materials to keep members of the Southern Historical Association occupied for more than three-quarters of a century, to set scholars parsing the eighty-seven North American slave autobiographies written before emancipation, to offer Bell Wiley “amazingly large quantities” of letters written by ordinary soldiers, and to sustain Michael O’Brien for twelve hundred pages. “The South was a place,” he has written, “into which torrents of print poured….”

Brian P. Luskey. “Special Marts: Intelligence Offices, Labor Commodification, and Emancipation in Nineteenth-Century America.” The Journal of the Civil War Era 3, no. 3 (2013): 360–391.

““It seems to be absolutely necessary in large cities,” James Gordon Bennett explained in an 1859 issue of the New York Herald, “that labor, like every other merchantable commodity, should have its special marts.” In more than one column of prime, front-page real estate, Bennett informed readers about these marts, colloquially dubbed intelligence offices. Even though most Americans still found work or workers through friends and family members, these employment agencies were ubiquitous institutions in the middle decades of the nineteenth century. Bennett estimated that there were between forty and sixty such shops in Manhattan, while other commentators counted hundreds. In these offices—sometimes located below ground, in basements, to evade police surveillance and city licensing requirements—employment agents sold information about the labor market to prospective employees and employers so the former could find work and the latter could find workers. Intelligence office keepers collected a fee ranging from fifty cents to a dollar from each party who sought information. In the waiting rooms of these establishments, agents, workers, and employers met face-to-face, asking questions and inspecting appearances to deduce character traits and skills in the hopes of making amenable bargains with each other….”

REVIEW ESSAY – Nicole Etcheson. “Microhistory and Movement: African American Mobility in the Nineteenth Century.” The Journal of the Civil War Era 3, no. 3 (2013): 392–404.

“African American history may be one of the last fields to receive a micro-historical treatment. Nineteenth-century African American history has been favored with sweeping accounts of the black experience, ranging from John Blassingame’s classic The Slave Community to Ira Berlin’s more recent Many Thousands Gone. Studies on more focused topics such as slavery in the Chesapeake or free blacks in the North have certainly contributed to knowledge of the black experience, but scarce records, especially the lack of firsthand accounts for many aspects of black life, make microhistory’s tight focus on the “proudly small” difficult to achieve…”

Image Credit: Edward King, The Great South (Hartford, Conn., 1875), p. 83 (Special Collections, University of Virginia Library) as shown on http://www.slaveryimages.org, compiled by Jerome Handler and Michael Tuite, and sponsored by the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and the University of Virginia Library. (Click image for details)
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