Cover image for Black congressmen during Reconstruction : a documentary sourcebook
Black congressmen during Reconstruction : a documentary sourcebook
Publication Information:
Westport, Conn. : Praeger, 2002.
Physical Description:
xx, 444 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


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E185.6 .B623 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

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During the Reconstruction, African Americans from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia--former slave-owning states--were elected to Congress in remarkable numbers. They included lawyers, teachers, businessmen, editors, and ministers. African Americans gained the right to vote through the Reconstruction Acts and the Civil War Amendments, and elected 2 blacks to the Senate and 19 to the House of Representatives. This book provides brief biographical sketches of these extraordinary politicians and excerpts from documents illuminating their activities in Congress.

These politicians took an active role and spoke out on issues from civil rights legislation and policies on Native Americans to the Chinese Exclusion Bill and foreign policy. They demanded a federal law making lynching a capital crime, denounced massacres in the South, and decried the activities of the Ku Klux Klan. They played important roles until the South successfully drove blacks away from the polls and from Congress.

Author Notes

STEPHEN MIDDLETON is Associate Professor of History at North Carolina State University. He is the author of The Black Laws in the Old Northwest: A Documentary History (Greenwood, 1993). His specialty is U.S. Constitutional History with a research interest in race and constitutional and legal history.

Table of Contents

John David Smith
Forewordp. ix
Prefacep. xi
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Introductionp. xv
1. Blanche Kelso Bruce, Senatep. 1
2. Richard Harvey Cain, House of Representativesp. 39
3. Henry Plummer Cheatham, House of Representativesp. 59
4. Robert Carlos De Large, House of Representativesp. 79
5. Robert Brown Elliott, House of Representativesp. 85
6. Jeremiah Haralson, House of Representativesp. 115
7. John Adams Hyman, House of Representativesp. 121
8. John Mercer Langston, House of Representativesp. 125
9. Jefferson Franklin Long, House of Representativesp. 141
10. John Roy Lynch, House of Representativesp. 145
11. Thomas Ezekiel Miller, House of Representativesp. 227
12. George Washington Murray, House of Representativesp. 245
13. Charles Edmund Nash, House of Representativesp. 267
14. James Edward O'Hara, House of Representativesp. 275
15. Joseph Hayne Rainey, House of Representativesp. 291
16. Alonzo Jacob Ransier, House of Representativesp. 297
17. James Thomas Rapier, House of Representativesp. 309
18. Hiram Rhodes Revels, Senatep. 319
19. Robert Smalls, House of Representativesp. 333
20. Benjamin Sterling Turner, House of Representativesp. 349
21. Josiah Thomas Walls, House of Representativesp. 357
22. George Henry White, House of Representativesp. 391
Bibliographyp. 431
Indexp. 437