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Download Southern Crossing: A History of the American South, by Edward L. Ayers PDF

By Edward L. Ayers

Edward L. Ayers huge historical past, Promise of the recent South, was once praised through the eminent historian Bertram Wyatt-Brown as "A paintings of often lovely beauty," who additional "The attractiveness and sensitivity that he achieves are average of few ancient works." Winner of the James A. Rawley Prize for most sensible booklet on American Race relatives from the association of yank Historians, and the Frank Lawrence Owsley and Harriett Chappell Owsley Award from the Southern ancient organization, and finalist for the 1992 nationwide ebook Award, the 1992 Pulitzer Prize for heritage, and the 1993 Southern ebook Award, Promise of the recent South proven Ayers as one of many most excellent students of the yankee South. Now, during this newly revised version, Ayers has distilled this impressive paintings to provide a good extra readable account of the recent South.Ranging from the Georgia coast to the Tennessee mountains, from the facility agents to tenant farmers, Ayers depicts a land of startling contrasts--a time of growth and repression, of latest industries and previous methods. Ayers takes us from distant Southern cities, revolutionized by means of the unfold of the railroads, to the statehouses the place Democratic "Redeemers" swept away the legacy of Reconstruction; from the small farmers, trapped into starting to be not anything yet cotton, to the recent industries of Birmingham; from abuse and intimacy within the kinfolk to tumultuous public conferences of the prohibitionists. He explores each point of society, politics, and the economic system, detailing the significance of every within the rising New South. here's the neighborhood Baptist congregation, the rustic shop, the tobacco-stained second-class railroad automobile, the increase of Populism: the teeming, nineteenth-century South involves existence in those pages. And principal to the whole tale is the function of race kinfolk, from alliances and friendships among blacks and whites to the unfold of Jim Crow legislation and disenfranchisement. Ayers weaves these types of info into the contradictory tale of the recent South, exhibiting how the quarter constructed the styles it used to be to persist with for the following fifty years.A bright portrait of a society present process the surprising disagreement of the guarantees, expenses, and outcomes of recent lifestyles, this can be an unforgettable account of the recent South--a land with one foot sooner or later and the opposite long ago.

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Extra info for Southern Crossing: A History of the American South, 1877-1906

Sample text

A tenant might bring most of his tools and supplies with him or he might come empty-handed; rent might be paid in cash or crops. A cropper might contract for a fourth, a third, or half of the crop. Sometimes categories mixed, as when sharecroppers worked for wages during slack times or when renters sharecropped a piece of land on which they grew corn. A large landowner might well have renters, croppers, and laborers at work on the same plantation. It was not uncommon for renters to hire day laborers, or even to put sharecroppers on part of the land they rented.

He did not get to rent the land, though. COUNTRY AND TOWN 33 Every rural community expected to have a schoolteacher somewhere not too far away. Turnover was great—the average white teacher stayed at a school about three years, a black teacher two and a half. Leading families worked to make sure that someone stood at the front of the often ramshackle schoolhouse for at least ten or twelve weeks, often in July and August, when the crops needed less attention. "To be a country school teacher in those days meant to live a life just a cut above that of the hired hand, the only difference being what one did during the day," a South Carolina man recalled.

While whites pushed away from the city center, blacks migrated to neighborhoods downtown. Increasing residential segregation accompanied the emergence of more modern cities, with their sharply denned business districts and streetcar suburbs. The newer a Southern city, the more COUNTRY AND TOWN 41 likely it was to be consistently segregated by race; the faster a Southern city grew, the faster it became segregated. By the mid-i8gos, the vast majority of blocks in Atlanta, Richmond, and Montgomery were either all-white or allblack, the pattern violated mainly by white widows, grocers, and unskilled laborers too poor to live elsewhere.

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