top of page

Reconstruction Period in Beaufort County

Resources available with your Beaufort County Library card

This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). Latest update: 21 August 2018

After Appomattox: Military Occupation and the Ends of War

Gregory P. Downs

After Appomattox: Military Occupation and the Ends of War by Gregory P. Downs posits that the final end to slavery was “born in the face of bayonets” –that is, the 1865 - 1871 occupation of the South by US Army troops protected the freedmen’s participation in the democratic process for those years. Once the troops left, the civil rights of the former enslaved people were systematically undermined by political powers at the state and local levels of government.


Borrow the book from the Library

After Lincoln : How the North Won the Civil War and Lost the Peace

A.J. Langguth

A brilliant evocation of the post-Civil War era by the acclaimed author of Patriots and Union 1812. After Lincoln tells the story of the Reconstruction, which set back black Americans and isolated the South for a century.


Borrow the book from the Library

After Slavery : the Negro in South Carolina During Reconstruction, 1861-1877

Joel Williamson

After Slavery was a “revolutionary reinterpretation of the Negro during Reconstruction” from a sympathetic and learned scholar who placed the economic, social, religious, educational and political experiences of South Carolina African Americans during the triumphant and tragic years of Reconstruction within the national context of Gilded Age misconduct, malfeasance, and corruption.

Borrow the book from the Library

Andrew Johnson: A Biography

Hans L. Trefousse

Reconsiders the personality and the presidency of the only president to have been impeached, finding his failures due largely to an outdated, mythical view of America.


Borrow the book from the Library

At Freedom's Door : African American Founding Fathers and Lawyers in Reconstruction South Carolina

Edited by James Lowell Underwood and W. Lewis Burke, Jr. ; introduction by Eric Foner

This work seeks to rescue from obscurity the identities and contributions of black leaders who helped to rebuild South Carolina after the Civil War. It demonstrates the legal acumen displayed by prominent African Americans and their impact on the enactment of substantial constitutional reforms.


Borrow the book from the Library

Beaufort County Library's "Connections" Blog

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Focusing on local history, Gullah culture, genealogy, natural history,and archaeology of lowcountry South Carolina's historic Beaufort, Hampton and Jasper counties.


Read the blog

Beaufort Tricentennial Lecture Series: Sea Island Cotton Kingdom; The Idea of a Southern Nation

Part 2, February 13, 2009 : Dr. Larry Rowland; Dr. John McCardell, Jr.

Discusses the cotton gin, cotton fiber, indigo, William Barnwell Rhett and secession, Constitutional liberties, national characteristics, Beaufort College, Robert W. Barnwell, Library history; Education, William Elliott, and many "firsts" that are credited to this area. Beaufort was founded January 17, 1711.


Borrow the film from the Library

Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery

Leon F. Litwack

Researches the character of slavery, new freedom and racial relationships on both blacks and whites of the Reconstruction period. Pulitzer Prize, History, 1980.


Borrow the film from the Library

Ben Tillman & the Reconstruction of White Supremacy

Stephen Kantrowitz

This book traces the history of white male supremacy and its discontents from the era of plantation slavery to the age of Jim Crow. Friend and foe alike and generations of historians interpreted Tillman's physical and rhetorical violence in defense of white supremacy as a matter of racial and gender instinct. This book reveals that Tillman's white supremacy was a political program and social argument whose legacies continue to shape American life.


Borrow the book from the Library

Black over White: Negro Political Leadership in South Carolina During Reconstruction

Thomas Holt

In this prize-winning book Thomas Holt is concerned not only with the identities of the black politicians who gained power in South Carolina during Reconstruction, but also with the question of how they functioned within the political system. Thus, as one reviewer has commented, "he penetrates the superficial preoccupations over whether black politicians were venal or gullible to see whether they wielded power and influence and, if they did, how and to what ends and against what obstacles.


Borrow the book from the Library

Black Reconstruction in America

W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois was a public intellectual, sociologist, and activist on behalf of the African American community. He profoundly shaped black political culture in the United States through his founding role in the NAACP, as well as internationally through the Pan-African movement. Du Bois's sociological and historical research on African-American communities and culture broke ground in many areas, including the history of the post-Civil War Reconstruction period. Du Bois was also a prolific author of novels, autobiographical accounts, innumerable editorials and journalistic pieces, and several works of history. Black Reconstruction in America tells and interprets the story of the twenty years of Reconstruction from the point of view of newly liberated African Americans. Though lambasted by critics at the time of its publication in 1935, Black Reconstruction has only grown in historical and literary importance. In the 1960s it joined the canon of the most influential revisionist historical works. Its greatest achievement is weaving a credible, lyrical historical narrative of the hostile and politically fraught years of 1860-1880 with a powerful critical analysis of the harmful effects of democracy, including Jim Crow laws and other injustices. With a series introduction by editor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and an introduction by David Levering Lewis, this edition is essential for anyone interested in African American history.


Borrow the book from the Library

Black Voices from Reconstruction, 1865-1877

John David Smith

Original source documents are woven into a narrative providing the experiences and points of view of former slaves during the long process of Reconstruction following the Civil War.


Borrow the book from the library

Bloody Shirt: Terror after Appomattox

Stephen Budiansky

A narrative account of Reconstruction-era violence documents vigilante attacks on African Americans and their white allies, in an analysis that traces the period through the careers of two Union officers, a Confederate general, a northern entrepreneur, and a former slave.


Borrow the audiobook from the library

But There Was No Peace : The Role of Violence in the Politics of Reconstruction

George C. Rable

Preface to the new edition -- American violence, Southern violence, and Reconstruction -- The Specter of Saint-Domingue -- The Memphis race riot -- New Orleans and the emergence of political violence -- Military reconstruction: the triumph of Jacobinism -- The origins of the Counterrevolution -- The search for a strategy -- Counterrevolution aborted: Louisiana, 1871-1875 -- Counterrevolution triumphant: Mississippi, 1873-1876 -- 1876: The triumph of reaction -- Epilogue: On the inevitability of tragedy.


Borrow the book from the library

Capitol Men : The Epic Story of Reconstruction Through the Lives of the First Black Congressmen

Philip Dray

Pulitzer Prize finalist Philip Dray shines a light on a little known group of men: the nation's first black members of Congress. These men played a critical role in pushing for much-needed reforms in the wake of a traumatic civil war, including public education for all children, equal rights, and protection from Klan violence. But they have been either neglected or maligned by most historians--their "glorious failure" chalked up to corruption and "ill-preparedness."


Borrow the book from the library

Census Records

bdcbcl: Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC)

Information compiled by the Library's Beaufort District Collection:


  • 1890 Federal Census of Union Veterans and Widows - Available in all branch libraries through Ancestry Library Edition database or on microfilm (BDC, HHI).

  • 1790 – 1880, 1900 – 1930 Federal Census for Beaufort County - Available in all branch libraries through Ancestry Library Edition database or on microfilm (BDC, HHI).

  • 1870, 1880, 1900-1930 Federal Census for Hampton County - Available in all branch libraries through Ancestry Library Edition database or on microfilm (BDC, HHI).

  • 1910-1930 Federal Census for Jasper County. - Available in all branch libraries through Ancestry Library Edition database or on microfilm (BDC, HHI).

Charlotte Forten, 1837 – 1914: A List of Selected Materials & Links

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



The Civil War and Reconstruction

Ray B. Browne and Lawrence A. Kreiser, Jr.

The Civil War tore America apart. The ensuing era of Reconstruction sewed it back together. In this vivid look at the popular culture of the era, Browne and Kreiser examine how Americans coped with the trials and tribulations of this cataclysmic period.


Borrow the book from the library

Civil War and Reconstruction Era Stereoscope Photographs of the Port Royal Region

Digital Collections from the Beaufort District Collection, Beaufort County Library hosted by the Lowcountry Digital Library

This collection of 106 Civil War period photographic stereopticon cards of the Beaufort area, St. Augustine, Florida, and Charleston are primarily from the Samuel A. Cooley studio. There are a number of scenes depicting the homes and life of the freedmen, a rarity.


View the collection

Civil War and Reconstruction Eras

Tracey Baptiste

The Civil War tore America apart. The ensuing era of Reconstruction sewed it back together. In this vivid look at the popular culture of the era, Browne and Kreiser examine how Americans coped with the trials and tribulations of this cataclysmic period.


eBook (Hoopla)

The Conservative Regime : South Carolina, 1877-1890

William J. Cooper, Jr.

First published in 1968, this is an investigation of the way in which South Carolinians redefined their state in the wake of the Civil War and Reconstruction. In this detailed revisionist study, William J. Cooper, Jr. focuses on the Conservative government of the state of SouthCarolina and challenges many of the commonly held views about the period, including some expressed by C. Vann Woodward in his influential book Origins Of The New South. Cooper provides a thorough analysis of the general political methods and policies of the ideology.


Borrow book from the Library

Declarations of Dependence: The Long Reconstruction of Popular Politics in the South, 1861-1908

Gregory Downs

In this highly original study, Gregory Downs argues that the most American of wars, the Civil War, created a seemingly un-American popular politics, rooted not in independence but in voluntary claims of dependence. Through an examination of the pleas and petitions of ordinary North Carolinians, Declarations of Dependence contends that the Civil War redirected, not destroyed, claims of dependence by exposing North Carolinians to the expansive but unsystematic power of Union and Confederate governments, and by loosening the legal ties that bound them to husbands, fathers, and masters.Faced with anarchy during the long reconstruction of government authority, people turned fervently to the government for protection and sustenance, pleading in fantastic, intimate ways for attention. This personalistic, or what Downs calls patronal, politics allowed for appeals from subordinate groups like freed blacks and poor whites, and also bound people emotionally to newly expanding postwar states. Downs's argument rewrites the history of the relationship between Americans and their governments, showing the deep roots of dependence, the complex impact of the Civil War upon popular politics, and the powerful role of Progressivism and segregation in submerging a politics of dependence that--in new form--rose again in the New Deal and persists today.

Borrow the eBook from the Library (hoopla)

The Era of Reconstruction, 1865-1877

Kenneth Stampp

Stampp's classic work offers a revisionist explanation for the radical failure to achieve equality for blacks, and of the effect that Conservative rule had on the subsequent development of the South. Refuting former schools of thought, Stampp challenges the notions that slavery was somehow just a benign aspect of Southern culture, and how the failures during the reconstruction period created a ripple effect that is still seen today.

Borrow the Book from the Library 

Eunice : A Tale of Reconstruction Times in South Carolina : A Novel

William James Rivers

Noted 19th-century South Carolina historian and novelist, James Williams Rivers penned this lost tale of the Reconstruction era years before the Lost Cause romance became a genre all its own. Published here for the first time, Eunice combines the historical treasure trove of the author's eyewitness accounts of the Civil War and Reconstruction with his literary plot about a Southern woman choosing love over conventional expectations. Eunice opens with the burning of Columbia on February 17, 1865, as drawn from Rivers's own firsthand experience of the event. Wade Hampton and his Red Shirts, the Ku Klux Klan, African Americans, and carpetbaggers (corrupt and honourable alike) inhabit River's fictional world. The novel centers on Eunice DeLesline, a Southern belle impoverished by the war and faced with divergent visions of Southern masculinity. Competing for her hand are Willie Barton, a son of the Old South, and Colonel Loyle, a self-made Confederate captain. A carpetbagger's plot to kidnap Eunice drives the action and presents Rivers with ample opportunity to voice his opinions on race, gender, and power in this transitional period in American history. what kind of Southerner might best lead the region. Eunice sides with her heart and invites a new era of prosperity. In using historical episodes as a framework for his story, Rivers adopts the technique of another South Carolina novelist and historian, William Gilmore Simms. Like his fellow Reconstruction novelists John W. De Forest, Albion Tourgee, and Charles E. Craddock (Mary Murphree), Rivers uses fiction as a means to explore how the nation would or would not reunite following the war. However, he takes a more pointed approach than others in defining what kind of leadership would best serve the postbellum South. Tara Courtney McKinney's introduction sets the story in its proper cultural context and provides valuable biographical information on an important, though overlooked, Southern writer.

Borrow the Book from the Library 

Extracts from letters of teachers and superintendents of the New-England Educational Commission for Freedmen

4th series, 1864. SC 306.3621 EXT

The Facts of Reconstruction

John Roy Lynch

The Facts of Reconstruction is John Roy Lynch's fascinating and detailed account of the USA's political situation following the conclusion of the American Civil War. As a Speaker in the Mississippi House of Representatives, John R. Lynch was one of the first-ever black politicians. As such, the victory of the Union forces in 1865 directly influenced his life and career. Simply by virtue of emancipation, Lynch was a major stakeholder in the reconstruction efforts between the Union north and the secessionist south. He consequently felt obliged to author this retrospective history covering the major political events and turning points. Immediately after the American Civil War concluded, the USA was in a fractured and fraught state. The assassination of Abraham Lincoln, who sought to mend bridges and reconcile with the secessionist states, exacerbated the situation further. The 1860s, 1870s and 1880s were thus a tumultuous time for American politics, in which reforms were hard fought and incremental in the various states and nationally at the federal level. Writing in 1913, Lynch charts the journey made over those difficult decades, drawing on his personal experience as a member of Mississippi's House of Representatives, and the national record. He charts the various elections, and the evolution of the Republican and Democratic parties as distinct wings of the political landscape. Various events, such as the rise of Democratic radicalism in the South, and the election of Grover Cleveland to the Presidency, are detailed. In all, "The Facts of Reconstruction" offers a reasonable overview of a transitional period in U.S. politics from an insider. The ongoing racial conflicts following the emancipation of African American slaves are charted alongside the personal traits, ideals and acts of the various politicians of the time.

Borrow the book from the Library

First Days Amongst the Contrabands: Diaries and Personal Accounts

Elizabeth Hyde Botume

Read online


Diaries and Personal Accounts

Digitized by the Internet Archive

Publication date 1893

Topics Reconstruction -- South Carolina. Freedmen -- South Carolina.

Publisher Boston : Lee and Shepard

Collection westvirginiawesleyan; americana

Digitizing sponsor Lyrasis Members and Sloan Foundation

Contributor West Virginia Wesleyan College, Annie Merner Pfeiffer Library

From the Collection of Charles Aubrey Jones


The Freedmen's Bureau, Politics, and Stability Operations During Reconstruction in the South

William Burks

The United States' Civil War ended in 1865. However, the post-conflict period immediately following, known as Reconstruction, lasted another 12 years. This era provides a great case study for examining the impacts of politics on military stability operations. This thesis focuses on the Freedmen's Bureau during its existence from 1865 to 1872. Envisioned as the lead organization for integrating former slaves into American society, the Bureau's efforts in the post-Civil War South were undermined by a hostile political situation at the national and state levels and a diminishing lack of popular support throughout the nation to embrace radical social change. The Bureau's operational time frame splits into three distinct periods: conflict with President Andrew Johnson from 1865 to early 1867, revamped efforts during Congressional Reconstruction from early 1867 to the end of 1868, and a reduced operational focus (primarily education) from 1869 to 1872. The Bureau faced manning challenges and fought racism as it worked to help former slaves become self-sufficient, educated, and true citizens of the nation in which they resided. Unfortunately, hostile political conditions meant much of the civil rights work accomplished by the Bureau was subdued after its demise until the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s.

Borrow the book from the Library


Freedom's Lawmakers : A Directory of Black Officeholders During Reconstruction

Eric Foner

With Freedom's Lawmakers, Eric Foner has assembled the first comprehensive directory of the over 1,500 African Americans who held political office in the South during the Reconstruction era. He has compiled an impressive amount of information about the antebellum status, occupations, property ownership, and military service of these officials - who range from U.S. congressmen to local justices of the peace and constables. This revised paperback edition also includes material on forty-five additional officials. In his Introduction, Foneranalyzes and interprets the roles of the black American officeholders. Concise biographies, in alphabetical order, trace the life histories of these individuals - many previously unknown. This useful and informative volume also includes an index by state, by occupation, by office during Reconstruction, by birth status, and by topic.

Borrow the book from the Library


Forever Free : The Story of Emancipation and Reconstruction

Eric Foner

This new examination of the years of Emancipation and Reconstruction during and immediately following the Civil War emphasizes the era's political and cultural meaning for today's America. Historian Foner overturns numerous assumptions growing out of the traditional understanding of the period, which is based almost exclusively on white sources and shaped by (often unconscious) racism. He presents the period as a time of determination, especially on the part of recently emancipated black Americans, to put into effect the principles ofequal rights and citizenship for all. He makes clear how, by war's end, freed slaves built on networks of church and family in order to exercise their right of suffrage as well as gain access to education, land, and employment, and shows that the birth of the Ku Klux Klan andrenewed acts of racial violence were retaliation for the progress made by blacks soon after the war.​

Read the book from the Library


The Glorious Failure ; Black Congressman Robert Brown Elliott and the Reconstruction in South Carolina

Peggy Lamson

A man of mystery -- All colors and conditions -- The great doctrine of manhood sufferage -- God save the state of South Carolina -- Their murderous work -- Republicanism first, foremost, and always -- In the Congress of the United States -- High crimes and misdemeanors -- The almighty dollar -- A natural gift for oratory -- Seeds of discord -- Black thursday -- To live and die in Dixie -- A giant step backward -- In the midst of his years -- Key political figures in South Carolina.

Read the book from the Library

Governor Chamberlain's Administration in South Carolina

Walter Allen

Massachusetts born Daniel Henry Chamberlain was actively involved in the tumultuous and dangerous South Carolina political scene from 1868 – 1877, serving as a delegate to the 1868 State Constitutional Convention, Attorney General under Republican Gov. Robert K. Scott from 1868 - 1872, and as South Carolina Governor 1874 – 1876. Matters of corruption, competency, and race were prominent throughout the period and Chamberlain tried to be moderate in tone and action. He ran for Governor against Wade Hampton III in 1876, a election that was noted for the violent and intimidating tactics used to suppress non-white voters. For a short period, both Chamberlain and Hampton claimed to have won and there were two houses of representatives claiming legitimacy as well. However once the Compromise of 1877 was reached and Rutherford B. Hayes declared President of the United States, Chamberlain conceded to Hampton and Chamberlain left South Carolina. ​

Read the book from the Library

A Hard Fight for We: Women's Transition from Slavery to Freedom in South Carolina

Leslie A. Schwalm

Focusing on slave women on the rice plantations of lowcountry South Carolina, Leslie Schwalm offers a thoroughly researched account of their vital roles in antebellum plantation life and in the wartime collapse of slavery, and their efforts as freedwomen to recover from the impact of war while redefining life and labor in the postbellum period.


Borrow book from the Library

Harriet Tubman and the Combahee River Raid: A Selective List of Links & Materials

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



Image: Combahee River Raid, Harper’s Weekly, 4 July 1863 (Beaufort District Collection Print #43)

Historical Dictionary of Reconstruction

Hans L. Trefousse

This reference book by well-known Reconstruction expert Trefousse will be of great use to scholars and general readers. Pithy, readable articles, spanning the years 1862-96, reflect current scholarship on the period and thus focus heavily on race relations, the freed slaves, and restoration of the states. There are entries on court cases, terms (blacks, labor, etc.), organziations, states, laws, miscellaneous events, and major individuals. . . . As the only reference work of its type, it should find widespread applicability in libraries of any size. (Library Journal)


Borrow book from Library

Hurrah for Hampton! Black Red Shirts in South Carolina during Reconstruction

Edmund L Drago

This Post-Revisionist Study examines the motives and the concerns of the ex-slaves in South Carolina who supported a movement that eventually led to white supremacy. Although most freedmen throughout the states of the former Confederacy were Republicans loyal to the party of the Federal government that had emancipated them, there were factions of African-American voters who aligned themselves with local white Democratic leaders. One such group of black conservatives joined the "Red Shirts," white paramilitary clubs that attempted to restore antebellum values in electing former Confederate general Wade Hampton governor of South Carolina in 1876. Drago's analysis recovers and explains this lost aspect of Southern black history. Drawing on primary sources that include testimonies of seven black Red Shirts before a Congressional investigation of the election and eleven slave narratives, he de-romanticizes the black experience by examining the relationship between black initiative and southern paternalism.


Borrow book from Library

In the Great Maelstrom: Conservatives in Post-Civil War South Carolina

Charles J. Holden

Examines how traditional thinkers both adjusted and clung to their beliefs long after the war; Few would question the assertion that South Carolina remained a conservative state long after the Civil War; one only needs to stroll over the grounds of the state capitol to be reminded of this long-running tradition in the state's history. But few have bothered to ask how, in the years following utter defeat during the Civil War, South Carolina remained a philosophically conservative state. How did self-proclaimed South Carolina conservatives maintain their beliefs in elite rule, the importance of a living tradition, and white supremacy through the loss of slavery, the rise of industry, populism, progressivism, and on through the New Deal? A study of South Carolina intellectual history from the end of the Civil War in 1865 to the 1945 advent of the Aromic Age, In the Great Maelstrom explores this ideology. The collapse of the Confederacy and the abolition of slavery forced South Carolina thinkers to ask what they could still believe in. In reconstructing their world views to fit the times, they employed the principles of white supremacy, the politics of elitism, and historicism.


Borrow book from Library

The Journal of Charlotte L. Forten

Forten, Charlotte L.

Read online

The journal of Charlotte L. Forten; with an introduction and notes by Ray Allen Billington.

Main Author:Forten, Charlotte L.

Related Names:Billington, Ray Allen 1903-


Published:New York, Dryden Press [c1953]

L.A. Hall Civil War and Reconstruction Eras Stereoscopic Images

Digital Collections from the Beaufort District Collection, Beaufort County Library hosted by the Lowcountry Digital Library

L.A. Hall, Beaufort's postmaster, gave the Beaufort Township Library a collection of 36 stereopticon views of Beaufort taken during the Federal occupation by E.W. Sinclair who worked for Samuel A. Cooley. According to the Beaufort Times June 21, 1944, "The pictures are most interesting, including those homes which were used as hospitals, the old Magnolia hotel, which is no more, and many of the homes which still exist." Later “"Cotton picking at the Yard - St. Helena Island Fall of 1879" and five stereopticon cards published by Rufus Morgan depict scenes near Columbia, SC and "Southern Scenery" near Asheville, NC.

View the collection

Land Records

Forten, Charlotte L.

Visit the Library's Beaufort District Collection to view these holdings:


  • Index to and Heads of Family Land Certificates, 1863-1872 [Microfilm] (BDC, HHI)

  • Tax Sale Certificates 1864 [Microfilm] (BDC, HHI)

  • Land Sale Certificates, 1869-1870; 1875-1876 [Microfilm] (BDC, HHI)

  • Township Maps series covering most of Port Royal and St. Helena Islands produced for the South Carolina Tax Commissioners circa 1863. This series of maps include layers of information that sometimes indicates owners prior to hostilities, names and numbers connected with a tax sale certificate number, school farms, etc.


Photo source: Extract of Tax Commissioners Map, BDC Map 106

Laura Matilda Towne (1825-1901): A Selective List of Links & Materials

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



Letters and Diary of Laura M. Towne

Laura M. Towne

Letters from Port Royal Written at the Time of the Civil War

Pearson, Elizabeth Ware. ed.

Masters without slaves : southern planters in the Civil War and Reconstruction

James L. Roark

In 1865, the Confederacy passed into history, but its ideological cornerstone survived. War had ended slavery, but war had not ended Southern planters' attachment to it. This is a history of that moment when planters became masters without slaves.

Borrow book from the Library

Missionary Teachers to the Freedmen

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



Image: “Teachers” (Reed Collection, Beaufort County Library, SC)

Mitchelville: The First Freedman’s Village, A List of Materials & Links

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Mitchelville, an historic site on Hilton Head Island, Beaufort County, South Carolina, is considered by many to be the first post-Civil War settlement for freed slaves with a government structure led by and administered by former slaves. The settlement was built under orders issued by Major General Ormsby Mitchel in 1862. It lasted almost twenty years as a separate town, disappearing in the 1880s. Mitchelville is an important Reconstruction Period historic site.

This list of links and materials was selected by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Manager of the Beaufort County Library’s (SC) special local history collection and archives unit, the Beaufort District Collection. Latest Revision: 14 December 2017



The Negro in South Carolina during Reconstruction

Alrutheus Ambush Taylor

Originally published by The Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, Washington, D.C., 1924.


Borrow the book from the Library

New South Newspaper, 1862–1866

Digital Collections, University Libraries, University of South Carolina

The Ordeal of the Reunion: A New History of Reconstruction

Mark Wahlgren Summers

For a generation, scholarship on the Reconstruction era has rightly focused on the struggles of the recently enslaved for a meaningful freedom and defined its success or failure largely in those terms. Summers goes beyond this vitally important question, focusing on Reconstruction's need to form an enduring Union without sacrificing the framework of federalism and republican democracy. This book offers a fresh explanation for Reconstruction's demise and a case for its essential successes as well as its great failures. Indeed, this book demonstrates the extent to which the victors' aims in 1865 were met--and at what cost.​

Borrow the book from the Library

Ousting the carpetbagger from South Carolina

Henry T. Thompson

Old and new Columbia -- Semicentennial of Hampton's inauguration -- Centennial of Battle of Fort Moultrie, 1876 -- In the wake of war -- The president attempts reconstruction -- Congress undertakes reconstruction -- Establishing the carpetbag-negro government -- The "bond ring" -- Other notorious rings -- The state constabulary and the militia -- The Ku Klux -- "The robber governor" -- The rifle clubs: the taxpayers appeal to Grant -- The "reform" Rrepublic Governor -- The crowning infamy of the radical legislature -- Fusion with Chamberlain loses out -- Wade Hampton nominated for governor -- Campaign of 187: the Red Shirts -- Riots during the campaign: disbanding the rifle clubs -- Grant backs up Chamberlain -- Both sides claim the election -- United States soldiers in the state house -- The dual houses -- The dual governors -- Withdrawal of federal troops: collapse of carpetbag-negro government -- Appendix: Governors of South Carolina, 1868-1886 -- Chamberlain's political transformation -- Democratic members of the legislature, 1876.

Borrow book from the Library

Penn School: A Selective List of Materials & Links

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



Phosphate, Farms and Family: The Donner Collection

Digital Collections from the Beaufort District Collection, Beaufort County Library hosted by the Lowcountry Digital Library

Few images of phosphate mining operations in Beaufort County are known to exist. The 35 images that Conrad Donner took of the Pacific Guano Company, a phosphate mining company operating on Chisolm Island, are especially important as they show key aspects of an industry crucial to the post-Civil War economy of Beaufort. Activities on Hall's Island are well documented through images of farm life, often including photographs of African American laborers hard at work, and photographs of family hunting and fishing trips.

Images relating to African Americans and agricultural life

Images relating to Phosphate mines and mining in Beaufort County

Pitchfork Ben Tillman, South Carolinian

Francis Butler Simkins and John G. Sproat

Benjamin Ryan Tillman (1847-1918) accomplished a political revolution in South Carolina when he defeated Governor Wade Hampton and the old guard Bourbons who had run the state since the end of Reconstruction. Tillman and his movement aimed to expand the political control of the state to lower- and middle-class whites at the expense of African Americans and the state's former leaders. During his political ascendancy as governor and then United States Senator, Tillman introduced the state's dispensary system and shaped the state's 1895 constitution into a bulwark of white supremacy. His legacy was one of divisiveness between black and white and between whites of differing economic and geographical backgrounds. Even as Tillman championed greater equity for white farmers and mill workers, he masterminded the pernicious system of segregation and disfranchisement for African Americans during the 1890s when he not only trampled their needs, but stripped them of fundamental political and civil rights. Almost single-handedly Tillman established the iniquities of Jim Crow that countless other Southern demagogues would imitate. These "accomplishments" would plague the South and the nation until this day. Orville Vernon Burton's new introduction to this Southern classic looks at both Tillman and author Francis Simkins as prime examples of southerners with tremendous talent but unsettling accomplishments.


Borrow the book from the Library

Politics and Ideology in the Age of the Civil War

Eric Foner

Insisting that politics and ideology must remain at the forefront of any examination of nineteenth-century America, Foner reasserts the centrality of the Civil War to the people of that period. Taken together, the essays work towards reintegrating the social, political, and intellectual history of the nineteenth century.

Borrow the book from the Library

The Promise of the New South: Life after Reconstruction

Edward L. Ayers

At a public picnic in the South in the 1890s, a young man paid five cents for his first chance to hear the revolutionary Edison talking machine. He eagerly listened as the soundman placed theneedle down, only to find that through the tubes he held to his ears came the chilling sounds of a lynching. In this story, with its blend of new technology and old hatreds, genteel picnics and mob violence, Edward Ayers captures the history of the South in the years between Reconstruction and the turn of the century. Ranging from the Georgia coast to the Tennessee mountains, from the power brokers to tenant farmers, Ayers depicts a land of startling contrasts. Ayers takes us from remote Southern towns, revolutionized by the spread of the railroads, to the statehouses where Democratic Redeemers swept away the legacy of Reconstruction; from the small farmers, trapped into growing nothing but cotton, to the new industries of Birmingham; from abuse and intimacy in the family to tumultuous public meetings of the prohibitionists. He explores every aspect of society, politics, and the economy, detailing the importance of each in the emerging NewSouth. Central to the entire story is the role of race relations, from alliances and friendships between blacks and whites to the spread of Jim Crows laws and disfranchisement. The teeming 19th-century South comes to life in these pages. The citation for the National Book Award declared "Promise of the New South" a vivid and masterfully detailed picture of the evolution of a newsociety. The Atlantic called it "one of the broadest and most original interpretations of Southern history of the past 20 years.

Borrow the book from the Library

The Promised Land: The History of the South Carolina Land Commission, 1869-1890

Carol K. Rothrock Bleser

Introduction -- The Sea Island experiment and beyond -- "Homes for the homeless and land for the landless" -- In search of personal aggrandizement -- "The gigantic folly" -- The transition -- The counter revolution -- Retrenchment, efficiency, economy, and the land experiment -- The lost decade -- Epilogue: promised land -- Appendix 1. Total number of land commission settlers -- Appendix 2. Land commission settlers in selected counties -- Appendix 3. Geographic distribution of land commission tracts.


Borrow book from the Library

The Prostrate State: South Carolina Under Negro Government

James Shepherd Pike

Pike traveled and wrote a series of newspaper articles regarding South Carolina and government corruption during Reconstruction. The articles were later published as a book.


Borrow book from the Library

Rebellion, Reconstruction, and Redemption, 1861–1893: The History of Beaufort County, South Carolina

Stephen R. Wise, Lawrence S. Rowland, Alexander Moore and Gerhard Spieler

The second of three volumes on the history of Beaufort County, Stephen R. Wise and Lawrence S. Rowland offer details about the district from 1861 to 1893, which influenced thedevelopment of the South Carolina and the nation. During a span of thirty years the region was transformed by the crucible of war from a wealthy, slave-based white oligarchy to a countywhere former slaves dominated a new, radically democratic political economy. This volume begins where volume I concluded, the November 1861 Union capture and occupation of the Sea Islands clustered around Port Royal Sound, and the Confederate retreat and re-entrenchment on Beaufort District's mainland, where they fended off federal attacks for three and a half years andvainly attempted to maintain their pre-war life. In addition to chronicling numerous military actions that revolutionized warfare, Wise and Rowland offer an original, sophisticated study of thefamous Port Royal Experiment in which United States military officers, government officials, civilian northerners, African American soldiers, and liberated slaves transformed the Union-occupied corner of the Palmetto State into a laboratory for liberty and a working model of the post-Civil War New South. The revolution wrought by Union victory and the political and social Reconstruction of South Carolina was followed by a counterrevolution called Redemption, the organized campaign of Southern whites, defeated in the war, to regain supremacy over African Americans. While former slave-owning, anti-black "Redeemers" took control of mainland Beaufort County, they were thwarted on the Sea Islands, where African Americans retained power andkept reaction at bay. By 1893, elements of both the New and Old South coexisted uneasily side by side as the old Beaufort District was divided into Beaufort and Hampton counties. TheDemocratic mainland reverted to an agricultural-based economy while the Republican Sea Islands and the town of Beaufort underwent an economic boom based on the phosphate mining industry and the new commercial port in the Lowcountry town of Port Royal.


Borrow book from the Library

Rebuilding Zion

Daniel W. Stowell

Rebuilding Zion is the first study to explore simultaneously the reaction of southern white evangelicals, northern white evangelicals, and Christian freedpeople to Confederate defeat. As white southerners struggled to assure themselves that the collapse of the Confederacy was not an indication of God's stern judgment, white northerners and freedpeople were certain that it was. Author Daniel W. Stowell tells the story of the religious reconstruction of the South following the war, a bitter contest between southern and northern evangelicals, at the heart of which was the fate of the freed-people's souls and the southern effort to maintain a sense of sectional identity. Stowell plots the conflicts that resulted from these competing visions of the religious reconstruction of the South. By demonstrating how the southern vision eventually came to predominate over, but not eradicate, the northern and freedpeople's visions for the religious life of the South, he shows how the southern churches became one of the principal bulwarks of the New South, a region marked by intense piety and intense racism throughout the twentieth century.


Borrow book from the Library


Laura K. Egendorf, editor

Presents varying opinions about the history of reconstruction in the United States.

Borrow book from the Library


Claudine L. Ferrell

Presents essays covering the history of Reconstruction, the period after the Civil War, from 1865 to 1877, covering important figures of the era, historical events, a selection of primary documents, and an annotated bibliography.

Borrow book from the Library

Reconstructing Dixie: Race, Gender, and Nostalgia in the Imagined South

Tara McPherson

Romancing the South : a tour of the lady's legacies, academic and otherwise -- "Both kinds of arms" : the Civil War in the present -- Steel magnolias, fatal flowers, and designing women : on the limits of a politics of femininity in the Sun Belt South -- Feeling southern : home, guilt, and the transformation of white identity.

Borrow book from the Library

Reconstruction : America's Unfinished Revolution, 1863-1877

Eric Foner

Historian Eric Foner chronicles the way in which Americans -- black and white -- responded to the unprecedented changes unleashed by the war and the end of slavery. He addresses the quest of emancipated slaves searching for economic autonomy and equal citizenship, and describes the remodeling of Southern society, the evolution of racial attitudes and patterns of race relations, and the emergence of a national state possessing vastly expanded authority and committed, for a time, to the principle of equal rights for all Americans.

Borrow book from the Library

Reconstruction and Reform

Joy Hakim

A history of the Reconstruction period and the movements of reform, immigration, industrialization, and urbanization. (Juvenile non-fiction)


Borrow the book from the library

Reconstruction following the Civil War in American History

Marsha Ziff

Traces the history of the Reconstruction period following the Civil War, from 1865 to 1877, following the efforts of the Republican party leadership to bring the South back into the Union and to give former slaves their civil rights.


Borrow the book from the library

Reconstruction in South Carolina, 1865-1877

John S. Reynolds

The provisional government -- Orr's administration -- Scott's first term -- Scott's second term -- The Kuklux troubles -- Moses' administration -- Chamberlain's administration -- The campaign of 'seventy-six -- The dual government -- The story of the frauds -- Review and reflections.


Borrow the book from the library

Reconstruction Period in Beaufort, South Carolina, 1862 – 1915

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



Image: Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper June 7, 1862 (BDC)

Reconstruction: The Great Experiment

Allen W. Trelease

Describes the prominent people and political and social events of the Reconstruction period.


Borrow book from the Library

Reconstruction Violence and the Ku Klux Klan Hearings: A Brief History with Documents

Shawn Alexander

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 head notes, a chronology, questions to consider, and a bibliography enrich students' understanding of the role of violence in the history of Reconstruction.


Borrow book from the Library

Rehearsal for Reconstruction : the Port Royal experiment

Willie Lee Rose

An account of the first experiment in Reconstruction, the effort of northern missionary abolitionists to assist the abandoned slaves of Sea Island, South Carolina establish schools, train troops, claim land ownership, and accept their status as freed men.


Borrow the book from the library

Reunion and Reaction: The Compromise of 1877 and the End of Reconstruction

C. Vann Woodward

Between the era of America's landmark antebellum compromises and that of the Compromise of 1877, a war had intervened, destroying the integrity of the Southern system but failing to determine the New South's relation to the Union. While it did not restore the old order in the South, or restore the South to parity with the Union, it did lay down the political foundations for reunion, bring Reconstruction to an end, and shape the future of four million freedmen. Originally published in 1951, this classic work by one of America's foremost experts on Southern history presents an important new interpretation of the Compromise, forcing historians to revise previous attitudes towards the Reconstruction period, the history of the Republican party, and the realignment of forces that fought the Civil War. Because much of the negotiating occurred in secrecy, historians have known less about this Compromise than others before it. Now reissued with a new introduction by Woodward, Reunion and Reaction gives us the other half of the story.


Borrow the book from the library

Reunion without Compromise: The South and Reconstruction: 1865-1868

Michael Perman

A study of the political leadership of the Southern States during the decisive three years immediately after the American Civil War. This was the crucial moment when the terms and shape of the post-war sectional settlement were being deliberated and determined and its outcome depended on the policy pursued by the Federal government towards the leaders of the Confederacy as well as on the Southerners' response to whatever course was adopted. Consequently, the Southern politicians were at the centre of the whole problem of reunion. It is very surprising, therefore, that until this study there has been virtually no analysis by historians of the goals, strategies and priorities of the Confederates. Yet without this, the struggle over Southern readmission cannot properly be understood.


Borrow the book from the library

Richard L. Johnson Medical Record Book, 1863-1864, 1867-1883

Digital Collections from the Beaufort District Collection, Beaufort County Library hosted by the Lowcountry Digital Library

This journal is significant because Johnson’s depictions give a firsthand view of medical practices during the Civil War and Reconstruction eras when prescribing whiskey, eggs, and opium were standard treatments. He practiced obstetrics on Edisto Island assisting freedwomen in childbirth in the late 1860s into the 1870s. The medical cases and farm accounts typically include the names of individuals involved and thus may be useful for genealogical purposes.


View the digital collection

Robert Smalls, 1839 – 1915: A Selective List of Links & Materials

From the Library's special local history & archives department, the Beaufort District Collection

Lists and Links of Selected Local History Materials from the Beaufort District Collection (SC). This list of selective materials and links was compiled by Grace Morris Cordial, MLS, SL, CA, Beaufort District Collection Manager. The Beaufort District Collection is the special local history collection and archives unit of the Beaufort County Library (SC). 



Image: Robert Smalls Captain of the Gun-boat “Planter” (From Harper’s Weekly, June 14, 1862, Beaufort District Collection, Beaufort County Library, SC)

Sick from Freedom: African-American Illness and Suffering during the Civil War and Reconstruction

Jim Downs

Bondspeople who fled from slavery during and after the Civil War did not expect that their flight toward freedom would lead to sickness, disease, suffering, and death. But the war produced the largest biological crisis of the nineteenth century, and as historian Jim Downs reveals in this groundbreaking volume, it had deadly consequences for hundreds of thousands of freed people. In Sick from Freedom, Downs recovers the untold story of one of the bitterest ironies in American history--that the emancipation of the slaves, seen as one of the great turning points in U.S. history, had devastating consequences for innumerable freedpeople. Drawing on massive new research into the records of the Medical Division of the Freedmen's Bureau-a nascent national health system that cared for more than one million freed slaves-he shows how the collapse of the plantation economy released a plague of lethal diseases. With emancipation, African Americansseized the chance to move, migrating as never before. But in their journey to freedom, they also encountered yellow fever, smallpox, cholera, dysentery, malnutrition, and exposure. To address this crisis, the Medical Division hired more than 120 physicians, establishing some forty underfinanced and understaffed hospitals scattered throughout the South, largely in response to medical emergencies. Downs shows that the goal of the Medical Division was to promote a healthy workforce, an aim which often excluded a wide range of freedpeople, including women, the elderly, thephysically disabled, and children. Downs concludes by tracing how the Reconstruction policy was then implemented in the American West, where it was disastrously applied to Native Americans. The widespread medical calamity sparked by emancipation is an overlooked episode of the Civil War and its aftermath, poignantly revealed in Sick from Freedom.


Borrow the book from the Library

South Carolina in the Civil War and Reconstruction Eras: Essays from the Proceedings of the South Carolina Historical Society

Edited by Michael Brem Bonner and Fritz Hamer

The volume offers, for the first time, easy access to the journal's best articles on the Civil War and Reconstruction up through 2001. Preeminent scholars such as Frank Vandiver, Dan T. Carter, and Orville Vernon Burton are among the contributors to this collection, which should reinvigorate interest in a new historical synthesis of the Palmetto State's experience during that era.


Borrow the book from the Library

South Carolina Negroes, 1877-1900

George Brown Tindall

First published in 1952, South Carolina Negroes, 1877-1900 rediscovers a time and a people nearly erased from public memory. In this pathbreaking book, George Brown Tindall turns to the period after Reconstruction before a tide of reaction imposed a new system of controls on the black population of the state. He examines the progress and achievements, along with the frustrations, of South Carolina's African Americans in politics, education, labor, and various aspects of social life during the short decades before segregation became the law and custom of the land. Chronicling the evolution of Jim Crow white supremacy, the book originally appeared on the eve of the civil rights movement when the nation's system of disfranchisement, segregation, and economic oppression was coming under increasing criticism and attack." "Along with Vernon L. Wharton's The Negro in Mississippi, 1865-1890 (1947), which also shed new light on the period after Reconstruction, Tindall's treatise served as an important source for C. Vann Woodward's influential The Strange Career of Jim Crow (1955). South Carolina Negroes now reappears fifty years later in an environment of reaction against the civil rights movement, a situation that parallels in many ways the reaction against Reconstruction a century earlier. A new introduction by Tindall reviews the book's origins and its place in the literature of southern and black history.


Borrow the book from the Library

South Carolina Scalawags

Hyman Rubin III

South Carolina Scalawags tells the familiar story of Reconstruction from a mostly unfamiliar vantage point, that of white southerners who broke ranks and supported the newly recognized rights and freedoms of their black neighbors. The end of the Civil War turned South Carolina's political hierarchy upside down by calling into existence what had not existed before, a South Carolina Republican Party, and putting its members at the helm of state government from 1868 to 1876. Composed primarily of former slaves, the burgeoning party also attracted the membership of newly arrived northern "carpetbaggers" and of white South Carolinians who had lived in the state prior to secession. Known as "scalawags," these South Carolinians numbered as many as ten thousand--15 percent of the state's white population--but have remained a maligned and largely misunderstood component of post-Civil War politics.


Borrow the book from the Library

The South since the Civil War: As Shown by Fourteen Weeks of Travel and Observation in Georgia and the Carolina

Sidney Andrews

Five months after the end of the Civil War, northern journalist Sidney Andrews toured the former Confederacy to report on the political, economic, and social conditions in the aftermath of the south's defeat. His more than forty articles in the Chicago Tribune and the Boston Advertiser were so popular with curious northerners that Andrews published them as a book in 1866. This new edition of that volume, abridged by Heather Cox Richardson, makes Andrews's vivid first-hand account of the South after the Civil War available once again to a wide audience.


Borrow the book from the Library

Splendid Failure: Postwar Reconstruction in the American South

Michael W. Fitzgerald

Since the civil rights era of the 1960s, revisionist historians have sympathized with the racial-justice motivations of the Radical Republican Reconstruction policies that followed the Civil War. But this emphasis on the Radicals' positive goals and accomplishments has obscured the role they played in the overthrow of their own program, which ultimately led to another century of inequality for Southern blacks. Michael W. Fitzgerald's new interpretation of this first freedom movement played into the hands of the South's white racist reactionaries.

Borrow the book from the Library

State of rebellion : people's war in reconstruction South Carolina, 1865-1877

Richard M. Zuczek

State of Rebellion recounts the volatile course of Reconstruction in the state that experienced the longest, largest, and most dynamic federal presence in the years immediately following the Civil War. 

Borrow book from the Library

Stories of the South: Race and the Reconstruction of Southern Identity, 1865-1915

K. Stephen Prince

In the immediate aftermath of the Civil War, the character of the South, and even its persistence as a distinct region, was an open question. During Reconstruction, the North assumed significant power to redefine the South, imagining a region rebuilt and modeled on northern society. The white South actively resisted these efforts, battling the legal strictures of Reconstruction on the ground. Meanwhile, white southern storytellers worked to recast the South's image, romanticizing the Lost Cause and heralding the birth of a New South. In Stories of the South, K. Stephen Prince argues that this cultural production was as important as political competition and economic striving in turning the South and the nation away from the egalitarian promises of Reconstruction and toward Jim Crow. Examining novels, minstrel songs, travel brochures, illustrations, oratory, and other cultural artifacts produced in the half century following the Civil War, Prince demonstrates the centrality of popular culture to the reconstruction of southern identity, shedding new light on the complicity of the North in the retreat from the possibility of racial democracy.

Borrow book from the Library

Terror in the Heart of Freedom: Citizenship, Sexual Violence, and the Meaning of Race in the Postemancipation South

Hannah Rosen

Linking political events at the city, state, and regional levels, Rosen places gender and sexual violence at the heart of understanding the reconsolidation of race and racism in the postemancipation United States. The meaning of race in the antebellum southern United States was anchored in the racial exclusivity of slavery (coded as black) and full citizenship (coded as white as well as male). These traditional definitions of race were radically disrupted after emancipation, when citizenship was granted to all persons born in the United States and suffrage was extended to all men. Hannah Rosen persuasively argues that in this critical moment of Reconstruction, contests over the future meaning of race were often fought on the terrain of gender. Sexual violence--specifically, white-on-black rape--emerged as.

Borrow book from the Library

The Tribune. (Beaufort, S.C.) 1874-1876

Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection

The Beaufort Tribune, 1874-1876 is available online through the Chronicling America website.


Read online

Voter and Militia Registration

  • Militia Enrollments, 1869 Please note: This series consists of militia enrollment books for individual counties in South Carolina. The enrollments were made between June and December of 1869. County volumes are subdivided by township. The lists of male citizens in each township are divided into two categories, those between the ages of eighteen and thirty and those between thirty and forty-five. Information includes name, age, occupation, place of residence, and race. The entries for the city of Columbia include street names under place of residence. The Williamsburg County volume includes the name of landowner, head of household or plantation name under residence. The volumes for Horry, Orangeburg, Laurens, and Oconee counties apparently do not survive.  The Charleston volume includes only wards one through three and a part of ward four.

Photo: The photographic history of the Civil War - thousands of scenes photographed 1861-65, with text by many special authorities (1911) 

The Waning of the Old South Civilization, 1860-1880's

Clement Eaton

The southern fold on the eve of the civil war -- Characteristics of the planter aristocracy in 1860 -- The culture of the Old South: its greatest historian -- What happened to culture in the confederacy -- The mood of the south of Appomattox -- The waning of the Old South civilization.

Borrow book from the Library

The Wars of Reconstruction : the brief, violent history of America's most progressive era

Douglas R. Egerton

A history of the Reconstruction years, which marked the United States' most progressive moment prior to the Civil Rights movement, tells the stories of the African-American activists and officeholders who risked their lives for equality after the Civil War.


Borrow the book from the library

West from Appomattox: The Reconstruction of America after the Civil War

Heather Cox Richardson

A sweeping history of the United States from the era of Abraham Lincoln to the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt, this book stretches the boundaries of our understanding of Reconstruction.


Borrow the book from the library

The Work of Reconstruction: From Slave to Wage Laborer in South Carolina 1860-1870

Julie Saville

This book examines social, political, and cultural conflicts opened by the abolition of slavery and the fashioning of wage relations in the era of the American Civil War. It offers a new, close look at the origins, goals, and tactics of popular political clubs created by emancipated workers in the countryside of one of the Deep South's oldest plantation states. The Work of Reconstruction draws on a rich documentary record that allowed ex-slaves to express in their own words and behavior the aspirations and goals that underlay their efforts. Not satisfied to render freed men and women as objects of theoretical inquiry, this book vividly recovers the concrete practices and language in which ex-slaves achieved freedom and the expectations that they had of liberty.


Borrow the book from the library

Yearning to Breathe Free: Robert Smalls of South Carolina and His Families

Andrew Billingsley

Robert Smalls, son of Lydia Polite, was born 5 April 1839 in Beaufort, South Carolina. He and his mother were slaves of Henry McKee. He married Hannah Jones (1826-1883) in Charleston, South Carolina in 1858.


Borrow the book from the library

Yes, Lord I Know the Road : A Documentary History of African Americans in South Carolina 1526 – 2008

J. Brent Morris, Editor

The first comprehensive five-century chronicle of the South Carolina African American experience.


Borrow the book from the library

Please reload

bottom of page