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Cities Of The Dead

Author: William A. Blair
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 0807876232
Size: 71.98 MB
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Exploring the history of Civil War commemorations from both sides of the color line, William Blair places the development of memorial holidays, Emancipation Day celebrations, and other remembrances in the context of Reconstruction politics and race relations in the South. His grassroots examination of these civic rituals demonstrates that the politics of commemoration remained far more contentious than has been previously acknowledged. Commemorations by ex-Confederates were intended at first to maintain a separate identity from the U.S. government, Blair argues, not as a vehicle for promoting sectional healing. The burial grounds of fallen heroes, known as Cities of the Dead, often became contested ground, especially for Confederate women who were opposed to Reconstruction. And until the turn of the century, African Americans used freedom celebrations to lobby for greater political power and tried to create a national holiday to recognize emancipation. Blair's analysis shows that some festive occasions that we celebrate even today have a divisive and sometimes violent past as various groups with conflicting political agendas attempted to define the meaning of the Civil War.

Civil War Memories

Author: Robert J. Cook
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 1421423502
Size: 42.33 MB
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At a cost of at least 800,000 lives, the Civil War preserved the Union, aborted the breakaway Confederacy, and liberated a race of slaves. Civil War Memories is the first comprehensive account of how and why Americans have selectively remembered, and forgotten, this watershed conflict since its conclusion in 1865. Drawing on an array of textual and visual sources as well as a wide range of modern scholarship on Civil War memory, Robert J. Cook charts the construction of four dominant narratives by the ordinary men and women, as well as the statesmen and generals, who lived through the struggle and its tumultuous aftermath. Part One explains why the Yankee victors’ memory of the "War of the Rebellion" drove political conflict into the 1890s, then waned with the passing of the soldiers who had saved the republic. It also touches on the leading role southern white women played in the development of the racially segregated South’s "Lost Cause"; explores why, by the beginning of the twentieth century, the majority of Americans had embraced a powerful reconciliatory memory of the Civil War; and details the failed efforts to connect an emancipationist reading of the conflict to the fading cause of civil rights. Part Two demonstrates the Civil War’s capacity to thrill twentieth-century Americans in movies such as The Birth of a Nation and Gone with the Wind. It also reveals the war’s vital connection to the black freedom struggle in the modern era. Finally, Cook argues that the massacre of African American parishioners in Charleston in June 2015 highlighted the continuing relevance of the Civil War by triggering intense nationwide controversy over the place of Confederate symbols in the United States. Written in vigorous prose for a wide audience and designed to inform popular debate on the relevance of the Civil War to the racial politics of modern America, Civil War Memories is required reading for informed Americans today.

The Civil War Dead And American Modernity

Author: Ian Finseth
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190848367
Size: 65.93 MB
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The Civil War Dead and American Modernity offers a fundamental rethinking of the cultural importance of the American Civil War dead. Tracing their representational afterlife across a massive array of historical, visual, and literary documents from 1861 to 1914, Ian Finseth maintains that the war dead played a central, complex, and paradoxical role in how Americans experienced and understood the modernization of the United States. From eyewitness accounts of battle to photographs and paintings, and from full-dress histories of the war to fictional narratives, Finseth shows that the dead circulated through American cultural life in ways that we have not fully appreciated, and that require an expanded range of interpretive strategies to understand. While individuals grieved and relinquished their own loved ones, the collective Civil War dead, Finseth argues, came to form a kind of symbolic currency that informed Americans' melancholic relationship to their own past. Amid the turbulence of the postbellum era, as the United States embarked decisively upon its technological, geopolitical, and intellectual modernity, the dead provided an illusion of coherence, intelligibility, and continuity in the national self. At the same time, they seemed to represent a traumatic break in history and the loss of a simpler world, and their meanings could never be completely contained by the political discourse that surrounded them. Reconstructing the formal, rhetorical, and ideological strategies by which postwar American society reimagined, and continues to reimagine, the Civil War dead, Finseth also shows that a strain of critical thought was alert to this dynamic from the very years of the war itself. The Civil War Dead and American Modernity is at once a study of the politics of mortality, the disintegration of American Victorianism, and the role of visual and literary art in both forming and undermining social consensus.

Journal Of The Civil War Era

Author: William A. Blair
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 0807852643
Size: 56.98 MB
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The Journal of the Civil War Era Volume 2, Number 2 June 2012 TABLE OF CONTENTS New Approaches to Internationalizing the History of the Civil War Era: A Special Issue Editor's Note William Blair Articles W. Caleb Mcdaniel & Bethany L. Johnson New Approaches to Internationalizing the History of the Civil War: An Introduction Gale L. Kenny Manliness and Manifest Racial Destiny: Jamaica and African American Emigration in the 1850s Edward B. Rugemer Slave Rebels and Abolitionists: The Black Atlantic and the Coming of the Civil War Peter Kolchin Comparative Perspectives on Emancipation in the U.S. South: Reconstruction, Radicalism, and Russia Susan-Mary Grant The Lost Boys: Citizen-Soldiers, Disabled Veterans, and Confederate Nationalism in the Age of People's War Book Reviews Books Received Professional Notes Mark W. Geiger "Follow the Money" Notes on Contributors The Journal of the Civil War Era takes advantage of the flowering of research on the many issues raised by the sectional crisis, war, Reconstruction, and memory of the conflict, while bringing fresh understanding to the struggles that defined the period, and by extension, the course of American history in the nineteenth century.

Reluctant Rebels

Author: Kenneth W. Noe
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 9780807895634
Size: 71.57 MB
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After the feverish mobilization of secession had faded, why did Southern men join the Confederate army? Kenneth Noe examines the motives and subsequent performance of "later enlisters." He offers a nuanced view of men who have often been cast as less patriotic and less committed to the cause, rekindling the debate over who these later enlistees were, why they joined, and why they stayed and fought. Noe refutes the claim that later enlisters were more likely to desert or perform poorly in battle and reassesses the argument that they were less ideologically savvy than their counterparts who enlisted early in the conflict. He argues that kinship and neighborhood, not conscription, compelled these men to fight: they were determined to protect their families and property and were fueled by resentment over emancipation and pillaging and destruction by Union forces. But their age often combined with their duties to wear them down more quickly than younger men, making them less effective soldiers for a Confederate nation that desperately needed every able-bodied man it could muster. Reluctant Rebels places the stories of individual soldiers in the larger context of the Confederate war effort and follows them from the initial optimism of enlistment through the weariness of battle and defeat.

The Last Battle Of The Civil War

Author: Anthony J. Gaughan
Publisher: LSU Press
ISBN: 0807139297
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Seventeen years after Robert E. Lee's surrender at Appomattox, one final, dramatic confrontation occurred between the Lee family and the United States government. In The Last Battle of the Civil War, Anthony J. Gaughan recounts the fascinating saga of United States v. Lee, known to history as the "Arlington Case." Prior to the Civil War, Mary Lee, Robert E. Lee's wife, owned the estate that Arlington National Cemetery rests on today. After the attack on Fort Sumter, however, the Union army seized the Lees' Arlington home and converted it into a national cemetery as well as a refugee camp for runaway slaves. In 1877 George Washington Custis Lee, Robert and Mary's eldest son, filed suit demanding that the federal government pay the Lees just compensation for Arlington. In response, the Justice Department asserted that sovereign immunity barred Lee and all other private plaintiffs from bringing Fifth Amendment takings cases. The courts, the government claimed, had no jurisdiction to hear such lawsuits. In a historic ruling, the Supreme Court rejected the government's argument. As the majority opinion explained, "All the officers of the government, from the highest to the lowest, are creatures of the law and are bound to obey it." The ruling made clear that the government was legally obligated by the Fifth Amendment to pay just compensation to the Lees. The Court's ruling in United States v. Lee affirmed the principle that the rule of law applies equally to ordinary citizens and high government officials. As the justices emphasized, the Constitution is not suspended in wartime and government officials who violate the law are not beyond the reach of justice. Ironically, the case also represented a watershed on the path of sectional reconciliation. By ruling in favor of the Lee family, the justices demonstrated that former Confederates would receive a fair hearing in the federal courts. Gaughan provides a riveting account of the Civil War's final battle, a struggle whose outcome became a significant step on the path to national reunion.

The New Encyclopedia Of Southern Culture

Author: Charles Reagan Wilson
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 146961670X
Size: 29.64 MB
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This volume of The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture addresses the cultural, social, and intellectual terrain of myth, manners, and historical memory in the American South. Evaluating how a distinct southern identity has been created, recreated, and performed through memories that blur the line between fact and fiction, this volume paints a broad, multihued picture of the region seen through the lenses of belief and cultural practice. The 95 entries here represent a substantial revision and expansion of the material on historical memory and manners in the original edition. They address such matters as myths and memories surrounding the Old South and the Civil War; stereotypes and traditions related to the body, sexuality, gender, and family (such as debutante balls and beauty pageants); institutions and places associated with historical memory (such as cemeteries, monuments, and museums); and specific subjects and objects of myths, including the Confederate flag and Graceland. Together, they offer a compelling portrait of the "southern way of life" as it has been imagined, lived, and contested.

Sing Not War

Author: James Marten
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 0807877689
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After the Civil War, white Confederate and Union army veterans reentered--or struggled to reenter--the lives and communities they had left behind. In Sing Not War, James Marten explores how the nineteenth century's "Greatest Generation" attempted to blend back into society and how their experiences were treated by nonveterans. Many soldiers, Marten reveals, had a much harder time reintegrating into their communities and returning to their civilian lives than has been previously understood. Although Civil War veterans were generally well taken care of during the Gilded Age, Marten argues that veterans lost control of their legacies, becoming best remembered as others wanted to remember them--for their service in the war and their postwar political activities. Marten finds that while southern veterans were venerated for their service to the Confederacy, Union veterans often encountered resentment and even outright hostility as they aged and made greater demands on the public purse. Drawing on letters, diaries, journals, memoirs, newspapers, and other sources, Sing Not War illustrates that during the Gilded Age "veteran" conjured up several conflicting images and invoked contradicting reactions. Deeply researched and vividly narrated, Marten's book counters the romanticized vision of the lives of Civil War veterans, bringing forth new information about how white veterans were treated and how they lived out their lives.

Writing Reconstruction

Author: Sharon D. Kennedy-Nolle
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 1469621088
Size: 74.47 MB
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After the Civil War, the South was divided into five military districts occupied by Union forces. Out of these regions, a remarkable group of writers emerged. Experiencing the long-lasting ramifications of Reconstruction firsthand, many of these writers sought to translate the era's promise into practice. In fiction, newspaper journalism, and other forms of literature, authors including George Washington Cable, Albion Tourgee, Constance Fenimore Woolson, and Octave Thanet imagined a new South in which freedpeople could prosper as citizens with agency. Radically re-envisioning the role of women in the home, workforce, and marketplace, these writers also made gender a vital concern of their work. Still, working from the South, the authors were often subject to the whims of a northern literary market. Their visions of citizenship depended on their readership's deference to conventional claims of duty, labor, reputation, and property ownership. The circumstances surrounding the production and circulation of their writing blunted the full impact of the period's literary imagination and fostered a drift into the stereotypical depictions and other strictures that marked the rise of Jim Crow. Sharon D. Kennedy-Nolle blends literary history with archival research to assess the significance of Reconstruction literature as a genre. Founded on witness and dream, the pathbreaking work of its writers made an enduring, if at times contradictory, contribution to American literature and history.

Lincoln S Proclamation

Author: William A. Blair
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 9780807895412
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The Emancipation Proclamation, widely remembered as the heroic act that ended slavery, in fact freed slaves only in states in the rebellious South. True emancipation was accomplished over a longer period and by several means. Essays by eight distinguished contributors consider aspects of the president's decision making, as well as events beyond Washington, offering new insights on the consequences and legacies of freedom, the engagement of black Americans in their liberation, and the issues of citizenship and rights that were not decided by Lincoln's document. The essays portray emancipation as a product of many hands, best understood by considering all the actors, the place, and the time. The contributors are William A. Blair, Richard Carwardine, Paul Finkelman, Louis Gerteis, Steven Hahn, Stephanie McCurry, Mark E. Neely Jr., Michael Vorenberg, and Karen Fisher Younger.