Reconstruction Violence And The Ku Klux Klan Hearings: A Brief History With Documents

Paperback | January 23, 2015

byShawn Alexander

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This carefully edited selection of testimony from the Ku Klux Klan hearings reveals what is often left out of the discussion of Reconstruction—the central role of violence in shaping its course. The Introduction places the hearings in historical context and draws connections between slavery and post-Emancipation violence. The documents evidence the varieties of violence leveled at freedmen and Republicans, from attacks hinging on land and the franchise to sexual violence and the targeting of black institutions. Document headnotes, a chronology, questions to consider, and a bibliography enrich students’ understanding of the role of violence in the history of Reconstruction.

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This carefully edited selection of testimony from the Ku Klux Klan hearings reveals what is often left out of the discussion of Reconstruction—the central role of violence in shaping its course. The Introduction places the hearings in historical context and draws connections between slavery and post-Emancipation violence. The documents...

Shawn Leigh Alexander (Ph.D., University of Massachusetts) is associate professor and graduate director of African and African American Studies and director of the Langston Hughes Center at the University of Kansas, where he specializes in African American social and intellectual history of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:162 pages, 8.25 × 5.53 × 0.25 inPublished:January 23, 2015Publisher:Bedford/St. Martin'sLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0312676956

ISBN - 13:9780312676957

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Table of Contents

PART ONE

Introduction: Investigating Violence — White Supremacy and the Rise and Fall of Reconstruction

Presidential Reconstruction and the Roots of White Violence

Radical Reconstruction, Organized Lawlessness, and Congressional Investigation

Testimony of White Violence and Black Resistance

The Outcome of the Hearings and the Legacy of Reconstruction

PART TWO

The Documents

1. Background and Beginnings

1. Laws of the State of Mississippi, 1865

2. First Enforcement Act, May 31, 1870

3. Third Enforcement (Ku Klux Klan) Act, April 20, 1871

4. Rome (Ga.) Courier, October 24, 1871

2. Ku Klux Klan Violence and the Hearings

Gender and Sexual Violence

5. Caroline Smith, Atlanta, Georgia, October 21, 1871

6. Sarah Ann Sturtevant, Atlanta, Georgia, October 23, 1871

7. Hannah Tutson, Jacksonville, Florida, November 10, 1871

8. Harriet Simril, Columbia, South Carolina, December 19, 1871

Political Violence: The Franchise

9. Abram Colby, Atlanta, Georgia, October 27 and 28, 1871

10. John Childers, Livingston, Alabama, November 1, 1871

11. Betsey Westbrook, Demopolis, Alabama, October 24, 1871

12. James H. Alston, Montgomery, Alabama, October 17, 1871

Landownership, Economic Success, and Displacement

13. Eliza Lyon, Demopolis, Alabama, October 24, 1871

14. Warren Jones, Atlanta, Georgia, October 27, 1871

15. Samuel Tutson, Jacksonville, Florida, November 10, 1871

16. Augustus Blair, Huntsville, Alabama, October 9, 1871

Black Autonomous Institutions: Schools and Churches

17. Henry Giles, Montgomery, Alabama, October 17, 1871

18. Cornelius McBride, Washington, D.C., July 21, 1871

19. Elias Hill, Yorkville, South Carolina, July 25, 1871

Self-Defense

20. Willis Johnson, Columbia, South Carolina, July 3, 1871

21. Benjamin F. Herr, Livingston, Alabama, October 31 and November 1, 1871

22. Edmund W. Pettus, Washington, D.C., July 6, 1871

Ku Klux Klan: Members, Apologists, Makeup, and Character

23. Nathan Bedford Forrest, Washington, D.C., June 27, 1871

24. A. S. Lakin, Washington, D.C., June 13, 1871

25. William M. Lowe, Huntsville, Alabama, October 13, 1871

Committee Conclusions

26. Minority Report, February 19, 1872

27. Majority Report, February 19, 1872

APPENDIXES

A Brief Chronology of Reconstruction and the Ku Klux Klan Hearings (1863–1877)

Questions for Consideration

Selected Bibliography

Index