African American Families in the War against Reconstruction

Lecture Description

The story of Reconstruction is often told from the perspective of the politicians whose accounts claim an outsized place in collective memory. But this pivotal era looked very different to African Americans in the South transitioning from bondage to freedom after 1865. Using stories from her new book, I Saw Death Coming: A History of Terror and Survival in the War Against Reconstruction, Williams offers a breakthrough account of this much-debated period, transporting audiences into the daily existence of formerly enslaved families building hope-filled new lives. Williams offers a revelatory and, in some cases, minute-by-minute record of the nighttime raids and Ku Klux Klan strikes that helped bring the bold expansion of American freedom and democracy to an end.


African American Civil War and Reconstruction

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