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A Free Course to Help You Understand
Reconstruction, Jim Crow, Segregation (The Atlantic, 6/16/20)
A chain gang in 1903 (Getty)
Lincoln’s Plans of Reconstruction
(Allan B. Magruder, 1876)
“Here were no humiliating terms of submission imposed on a brave people: no amnesty qualifications exacted; no banishment or confiscation laws; no test-oaths, to incite to perjury or foster the resentments of war.”
The Result in South Carolina
(Anonymous, 1878) An anonymous contributor described mounting racial tensions in the aftermath of Reconstruction.
The Freedmen’s Bureau
(W. E. B. Du Bois, 1890) “No sooner had Northern armies touched Southern soil than this old question, newly guised, sprang from the earth, — What shall be done with slaves?”
The Awakening of the Negro
(Booker T. Washington, 1896) “It is through the dairy farm, the truck garden, the trades, and commercial life, largely, that the negro is to find his way to the enjoyment of all his rights.”
Strivings of the Negro People
(W. E. B. Du Bois, 1897) “It dawned upon me with a certain suddenness that I was different from the others; or like, mayhap, in heart and life and longing, but shut out from their world by a vast veil.”
Of the Training of Black Men
(W. E. B. Du Bois, 1902) Taking issue with Booker T. Washington, the author argues that blacks should attend college.
The Negro in the Regular Army
(Oswald Garrison Villard, 1903) “The sterling characteristics of the colored soldiers, their loyalty to the service as shown by the statistics of desertion, and, above all, their splendid service in Cuba, should have entitled them to additional organizations.”
The Heart of the Race Problem
(Quincy Ewing, 1909) “The problem, How to maintain the institution of chattel slavery, ceased to be at Appomattox; the problem, How to maintain the social, industrial, and civic inferiority of the descendants of chattel slaves, succeeded it, and is the race problem of the South at the present time. There is no other.”
African Americans in World War II
The History Place. Selected photographs of the the European and Pacific Theaters, awards and honors, women's contributions, etc.
The Church in the Southern Black Community
Documenting the American South. Autobiographies, biographies, church documents, sermons, histories, encyclopedias, and other published materials.
The Great Migration
More than six million African Americans fled the South in the first part of the twentieth century. Terror lynchings and other racial violence played a key role in this forced migration. Lynchings in America.
The Green Book
1936-1967. Also titled the Negro Motorist Green Book and then the Negro Travelers' Green Book listed places where African Americans would be welcomed during their travels. Arranged alphabetically by state, then by city, includes hotels, drug stores, night clubs, barber and beauty shops, etc.
Lynching in America
Listen to audio stories from generations affected by lynching. Watch a film exploring one family's journey. Explore interactive maps.
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Remembering Jim Crow
American Public Media. For much of the 20th Century, African Americans in the South were barred from the voting booth, sent to the back of the bus, and walled off from many of the rights they deserved as American citizens. Until well into the 1960s, segregation was legal. The system was called Jim Crow. In this documentary, Americans—black and white—remember life in the Jim Crow times.