Robert E. Lee and the Importance of Biography

Exposing the complicated truth of America’s past is the real work of historians. 

#books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures

A Political Road Not Taken in America

A brief look at the Confederate Constitution.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #constitution-us, #history-academic-subject, #united-states-politics-and-government

Virginia to Remove Robert E. Lee Statue From State Capital

The nation’s largest Confederate memorial was erected in 1890, the first of six monuments that became symbols of white power along the main boulevard in Richmond.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #northam-ralph-s, #race-and-ethnicity, #richmond-va

Virginia Supreme Court Clears Path for Removal of Robert E. Lee Statue

Two unanimous rulings allow Gov. Ralph Northam to remove the statue from its prominent spot on Monument Avenue in Richmond.

#black-lives-matter-movement, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #northam-ralph-s, #richmond-va, #slavery-historical, #virginia

Stephen B. Oates, Civil War Historian, Dies at 85

In a quartet of biographies, he explored how slavery and racial oppression could exist in a land based on the ideals of the Declaration of Independence.

#books-and-literature, #burns-ken, #civil-rights-movement-1954-68, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #deaths-obituaries, #history-academic-subject, #oates-stephen-b, #slavery-historical, #the-civil-war-tv-program, #university-of-massachusetts-amherst, #writing-and-writers

The South Must Teach Its Children the Truth

Attempts to restrict how students are taught about racism in schools have multiplied, but some in the South are standing in defense of real history. 

#black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #slavery-historical, #southern-states-us, #tennessee

‘The Lost Cause’ Is Back

Many Americans like the sanitized version of their history — color-corrected and photoshopped — and always have.

#black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #race-and-ethnicity, #republican-party, #slavery-historical, #united-states, #united-states-politics-and-government

Juneteenth Reminds Us Just How Far We Have to Go

Abolishing slavery was only one step on a winding journey.

#black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #discrimination, #federal-state-relations-us, #juneteenth, #law-and-legislation, #lincoln-abraham, #race-and-ethnicity, #slavery-historical, #thirteenth-amendment-us-constitution, #united-states

House Passes Bill to Make Juneteenth a Federal Holiday

The measure would designate June 19 as a federal holiday to commemorate the end of slavery. More than a dozen Republicans voted against it.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #emancipation-proclamation-1863, #holidays-and-special-occasions, #house-of-representatives, #johnson-ron-1955, #juneteenth, #law-and-legislation, #markey-edward-j, #senate, #slavery-historical, #thirteenth-amendment-us-constitution, #united-states-politics-and-government

The Remains of Nathan Bedford Forrest Are Being Exhumed in Memphis

The remains of Nathan Bedford Forrest, a slave trader and leader of the Ku Klux Klan, will be moved from Memphis to a Confederate museum 200 miles away.

#black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #forrest-nathan-bedford, #ku-klux-klan, #memphis-tenn, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #race-and-ethnicity, #slavery-historical, #sons-of-confederate-veterans, #tennessee

A Veteran Tried to Credit Black Americans on Memorial Day. His Mic Got Muted.

Retired Army Lt. Col. Barnard Kemter was speaking at an American Legion service in Hudson, Ohio, on Monday when he was intentionally silenced.

#american-legion, #black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #hudson-ohio, #kemter-barnard, #memorial-day, #ohio, #race-and-ethnicity, #slavery-historical

Stone Mountain’s Giant Confederate Monument Avoids Removal

Officials at the Georgia park voted to move flags and create exhibits to put the Civil War into fuller context. But the likeness of three Confederate leaders carved into stone isn’t going anywhere.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #davis-jefferson-f, #georgia, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #sons-of-confederate-veterans

Before the Civil War, America Was a ‘House Divided’ in More Ways Than One

Alan Taylor’s “American Republics” describes a nation that was less a united country than a congeries of feuding geographical entities.

#american-republics-book, #books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #mexican-american-war-1846-48, #slavery-historical, #states-us, #taylor-alan

When The Times Didn’t Print on Sundays

The breakout of the Civil War created a huge demand for news and allowed The Times to vault over a taboo and put out a daily paper on Sundays.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #new-york-times, #newspapers

After Threats to Turn It Into a Toilet, a Confederate Monument Is Recovered

A stone chair dedicated to Jefferson Davis has been returned to the United Daughters of the Confederacy after a group calling itself White Lies Matter claimed to have stolen it.

#cemeteries, #chairs, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #davis-jefferson-f, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #robberies-and-thefts, #united-daughters-of-the-confederacy

Charlottesville Can Remove Confederate Statues, High Court Rules

Monuments to the Confederate generals Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson are not protected by state law and can come down, the Virginia Supreme Court ruled on Thursday.

#charlottesville-va, #charlottesville-va-violence-august-2017, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #decisions-and-verdicts, #jackson-stonewall, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #right-wing-extremism-and-alt-right, #supreme-courts-state, #virginia

Maryland’s State Song, a Nod to the Confederacy, Nears Repeal

The lyrics of “Maryland, My Maryland,” long criticized as sympathetic to the Confederacy, refer to Abraham Lincoln as a “despot” and Union soldiers as “Northern scum!”

#baltimore-md, #black-people, #bowie-state-university, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #hogan-lawrence-j, #horse-racing, #law-and-legislation, #lincoln-abraham, #maryland, #maryland-my-maryland-song, #music, #poetry-and-poets, #politics-and-government, #preakness-stakes, #state-legislatures, #the-star-spangled-banner-song, #triple-crown-horse-racing, #united-states-politics-and-government

An Unlikely Alliance in Upstate N.Y. and the Fight for Black and Women’s Rights

Harriet Tubman, Frances Seward and Martha Wright shared a political cause and residency in Auburn, N.Y. “The Agitators,” by Dorothy Wickenden, tells the story of their joint crusade.

#black-people, #books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #content-type-personal-profile, #new-york-state, #seward-frances-1805-65, #slavery-historical, #the-agitators-three-friends-who-fought-for-abolition-and-womens-rights-book, #tubman-harriet, #wickenden-dorothy, #womens-rights, #wright-martha-coffin-1806-75

Over 160 Confederate Symbols Were Removed in 2020, Group Says

The Southern Poverty Law Center said more “symbols of hate” were removed from public property last year after the death of George Floyd than in the previous four years combined.

#black-lives-matter-movement, #black-people, #capitol-building-washington-dc, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #demonstrations-protests-and-riots, #discrimination, #flags-emblems-and-insignia, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #military-bases-and-installations, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #names-organizational, #race-and-ethnicity, #sons-of-confederate-veterans, #southern-poverty-law-center, #states-us, #symbols, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-politics-and-government

The Real Story of the ‘Draft Riots’

In 1863, mobs of white New Yorkers terrorized Black people. The response has something to teach us.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #demonstrations-protests-and-riots, #discrimination, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #manhattan-nyc, #race-and-ethnicity

Puncturing the Allure of Robert E. Lee, and Other Civil War-Era Histories

Three new books investigate Lost Cause mythology, justice in post-bellum Kentucky and the vibrant life of New Orleans’s Creole community in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

#a-shot-in-the-moonlight-how-a-freed-slave-and-a-confederate-soldier-fought-for-justice-in-the-jim-crow-south-book, #books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #economy-hall-the-hidden-history-of-a-free-black-brotherhood-book, #kentucky, #lee-robert-e, #montgomery-ben-journalist, #new-orleans-la, #robert-e-lee-and-me-a-southerners-reckoning-with-the-myth-of-the-lost-cause-book, #seidule-ty, #shaik-fatima, #slavery-historical

Trump’s New Civil Religion

The storming of the Capitol is a creation myth for a political movement.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #presidential-election-of-2020, #religion-and-belief, #storming-of-the-us-capitol-jan-2021, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

Confederate Battle Flag in the Capitol: A ‘Jarring’ First in U.S. History

Historians said it was unnerving to see a man carry the flag inside the Capitol, something not even Confederate soldiers were able to do during the Civil War.

#black-people, #capitol-building-washington-dc, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #flags-emblems-and-insignia, #storming-of-the-us-capitol-jan-2021, #united-states-politics-and-government

The Capitol Takeover That Wasn’t

In 1861, a pro-Southern mob wanted to block the tallying of electoral votes for Lincoln. So did some congressmen.

#booth-john-wilkes, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #house-of-representatives, #lincoln-abraham, #richard-iii-play, #scott-winfield, #senate, #shakespeare-william, #storming-of-the-us-capitol-jan-2021, #strong-george-templeton, #treason-and-sedition, #united-states-politics-and-government, #washington-dc

We Need a Second Great Migration

Georgia illuminates the path to Black power. It lies in the South. Follow me there.

#atlanta-ga, #black-people, #census, #civil-rights-and-liberties, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #elections, #population, #race-and-ethnicity, #redistricting-and-reapportionment, #southern-states-us, #storming-of-the-us-capitol-jan-2021, #whites

What Trump Shares With the ‘Lost Cause’ of the Confederacy

It is hard to miss the parallels between now and then of rewriting history and campaigns of disinformation.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #democratic-party, #house-of-representatives, #lee-robert-e, #right-wing-extremism-and-alt-right, #senate, #trump-donald-j, #united-states, #united-states-politics-and-government

Abolition Is Not Complete

The framers of the 13th Amendment did not intend to establish an empire of prison labor.

#black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #constitution-us, #thirteenth-amendment-us-constitution, #united-states-politics-and-government

Thanksgiving Is a Celebration of Freedom

The origins of the national holiday have little to do with Pilgrims and Indians.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #hale-sarah-josepha, #lincoln-abraham, #slavery-historical, #thanksgiving-day

Enslaved, Terrorized, Disenfranchised: Black Americans Still Found Ways to Change America

Two new works of history, “South to Freedom,” by Alice L. Baumgartner, and “The Kidnapping Club,” by Jonathan Daniel Wells, show how the actions of Black Americans have long influenced national politics.

#baumgartner-alice-l, #black-people, #books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #fugitives, #mexican-american-war-1846-48, #mexico, #new-york-city, #slavery-historical, #south-to-freedom-runaway-slaves-to-mexico-and-the-road-to-the-civil-war-book, #the-kidnapping-club-wall-street-slavery-and-resistance-on-the-eve-of-the-civil-war-book, #united-states-politics-and-government, #wells-jonathan-daniel-1969

For Biden and Harris, Defeating Trump Is Just the Beginning

The road to Trumpism was decades long. The road back won’t be easy.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #douglass-frederick, #marty-martin-e, #presidential-election-of-2020, #rodgers-daniel-t, #slavery-historical, #trump-donald-j

How Lincoln Survived the Worst Election Ever

There are many parallels between 1860 and 2020. Let’s hope there aren’t too many.

#breckinridge-john-c, #buchanan-james, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #davis-jefferson-f, #democratic-party, #lincoln-abraham, #presidents-and-presidency-us, #republican-party, #scott-winfield, #slavery-historical, #united-states-politics-and-government

Virginia Governor Can Remove Robert E. Lee Statue, but Not Yet, Judge Rules

The judge affirmed an order by Gov. Ralph Northam but allowed the monument to remain while local residents appeal the decision.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #decisions-and-verdicts, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #northam-ralph-s, #richmond-va

Richmond’s Robert E. Lee Statue Can Come Down, but Not Yet, Judge Rules

The judge affirmed an order by Gov. Ralph Northam but allowed the monument to remain while local residents appeal the decision.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #decisions-and-verdicts, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #northam-ralph-s, #richmond-va

Book Review: ‘The Zealot and the Emancipator,’ by H.W. Brands

H.W. Brands’s “The Zealot and the Emancipator” looks at how two opponents of slavery chose very different paths to abolition.

#books-and-literature, #brands-h-w, #brown-john-1800-59, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #emancipation-proclamation-1863, #lincoln-abraham, #slavery-historical, #the-zealot-and-the-emancipator-john-brown-abraham-lincoln-and-the-struggle-for-american-freedom-book

Mellon Foundation to Spend $250 Million to Reimagine Monuments

The initiative, the largest in the organization’s history, will support the creation of new monuments, as well as the relocation or rethinking of existing ones.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #elizabeth-alexander, #landrieu-mitch, #mellon-foundation, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #philanthropy

Searching for the Real Abraham Lincoln

David S. Reynolds’s “Abe” seeks to understand Lincoln by placing him in the context of his times.

#abe-abraham-lincoln-in-his-times-book, #books-and-literature, #brown-john-1800-59, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #constitution-us, #lincoln-abraham, #reynolds-david-s

A Counter to Confederate Monuments, Black Cemeteries Tell a Fuller Story of the South

Many have fallen into disrepair, the victims of mismanagement, political strife or abandonment. Now there’s an effort to restore and protect them.

#black-people, #cemeteries, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #columbia-sc, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #richmond-va, #southern-states-us

Amid the Monument Wars, a Rally for ‘More History’

Historians recently gathered at Civil War sites across the country in an effort to highlight distortions, omissions and the erasure of Black contributions.

#black-people, #chicago-ill, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #gettysburg-pa, #historic-buildings-and-sites, #midtown-area-manhattan-ny, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #slavery-historical

A Civil War Political Movement Reawakens — Complete With Capes

In 1860, the Wide Awakes mobilized against slavery and for Abraham Lincoln. A new collective is tapping into their spirit today.

#black-people, #black-thought-1971, #brathwaite-fred-fab-5-freddy, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #demonstrations-protests-and-riots, #historical-re-enactments, #race-and-ethnicity, #roots-the-music-group

Confederate Statue Near Site of White Nationalist Rally in Charlottesville Is Removed

The 111-year-old monument, “At Ready,” includes two cannons and cannonballs. It was near the site of a violent white supremacist rally in 2017 that killed one and injured dozens more.

#albemarle-county-va, #at-ready-statue, #charlottesville-va, #charlottesville-va-violence-august-2017, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #demonstrations-protests-and-riots, #lee-robert-e, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #right-wing-extremism-and-alt-right

The Trauma of the Civil War Lives On in Faulkner’s Fiction

“The Saddest Words,” by the scholar Michael Gorra, argues that America’s troubled racial past is the central, if often unspoken, theme at the heart of Faulkner’s work.

#books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #faulkner-william, #gorra-michael, #slavery-historical, #southern-states-us, #the-saddest-words-william-faulkners-civil-war-book

The South’s Fight for White Supremacy

Immediately after the Civil War ended, the South began a campaign to deny the true meaning of the conflict.

#black-people, #blight-david-w, #books-and-literature, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #pollard-edward-alfred-1832-72, #race-and-reunion-the-civil-war-in-american-memory-book, #reconstruction-era, #slavery-historical, #the-lost-cause-a-new-southern-history-of-the-war-of-the-confederates-book, #the-white-problem-in-america-book

We Need a Monument to the Unknown America

A memorial makes a statement about who is worth preserving. Why not a sacred and beautiful nothingness?

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #roman-civilization, #sculpture, #vietnam-war

Massachusetts Court Won’t Use Term ‘Grandfathering,’ Citing Its Racist Origins

The term was “adopted by some states after the Civil War in an effort to disenfranchise African-American voters,” the court noted.

#black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #confederate-states-of-america, #discrimination, #massachusetts, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #race-and-ethnicity, #slavery-historical, #zoning

The Reconciliation Must Be Televised

What is the next step as America confronts its racism? A broadcast spectacle, our critic writes, that could look like court, a telethon, therapy, an Oprah show — and more.

#apartheid-policy, #black-lives-matter-movement, #black-people, #civil-rights-movement-1954-68, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #coates-ta-nehisi, #conyers-john-jr, #desmond-matthew-s-1980, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #kerner-otto-jr, #race-and-ethnicity, #reparations, #roots-tv-program, #television, #truth-and-reconciliation-commission-south-africa, #winfrey-oprah

A Virginia Town Built Around Confederate Generals Re-Examines Its Identity

In Lexington, Va., where Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson are buried, people are reassessing the town’s ties to a legacy that symbolizes slavery and oppression.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #jackson-stonewall, #lee-robert-e, #lexington-va, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #northam-ralph-s, #virginia-military-institute, #washington-and-lee-university

Someone Tore Down a Union Army Statue in Saratoga Springs. Why?

The monument in a New York park was dedicated to men who volunteered to fight for the Union during the Civil War. It is unclear who toppled it, and for what reason.

#black-lives-matter-movement, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #saratoga-springs-ny, #vandalism

Pentagon Sidesteps Trump to Ban the Confederate Flag

The defense secretary lists the types of flags that are allowed to appear on bases worldwide. That flag does not fit.

#civil-war-us-1861-65, #defense-department, #esper-mark-t, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-politics-and-government

How Joe Biden Can Address the Monuments Issue

Monuments and memorials should present an honest version of the nation’s contradictory story. The Biden campaign can seize this historical moment.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #bunch-lonnie-g-iii, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #obama-barack, #presidential-election-of-2020, #smithsonian-institution, #united-states-politics-and-government

North Carolina City Approves Reparations for Black Residents

The measure passed by the City Council of Asheville, N.C., would provide funding to promote homeownership and business opportunities, but stopped short of stipulating direct payments.

#american-descendants-of-slavery, #asheville-nc, #black-lives-matter-movement, #black-people, #civil-war-us-1861-65, #floyd-george-d-2020, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #north-carolina, #police-brutality-misconduct-and-shootings, #race-and-ethnicity, #reparations, #slavery-historical