Civil War on Race Street: The Civil Rights Movement in Cambridge, Maryland / Edition 1

Civil War on Race Street: The Civil Rights Movement in Cambridge, Maryland / Edition 1

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by Peter B. Levy
     
 

Civil War on Race Street, so named because Race Street was the road that divided blacks and whites in Cambridge, Maryland, is a detailed examination of one of the most vibrant locally based struggles for racial equality during the 1960s. Beginning with an overview of Cambridge, particularly its history of racial and class relations, Peter Levy traces the emergence

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Overview

Civil War on Race Street, so named because Race Street was the road that divided blacks and whites in Cambridge, Maryland, is a detailed examination of one of the most vibrant locally based struggles for racial equality during the 1960s. Beginning with an overview of Cambridge, particularly its history of racial and class relations, Peter Levy traces the emergence of the modern civil rights movement in this city on Maryland's Eastern Shore.

Catalyzed by the arrival of freedom riders in 1962, the movement in Cambridge expanded in 1963 and 1964 under the leadership of Gloria Richardson, one of the most prominent (and one of the few female) civil rights leaders in the nation. In the years after her departure from Cambridge, the movement went into decline until 1967, when it underwent a brief revival that culminated with a riot allegedly incited by black power spokesman H. Rap Brown. In the wake of the riot, blacks and whites in Cambridge sought to rebuild their city and return to a politics of moderation. However, Spiro Agnew, then governor of Maryland, used the riot to advance his political career and the fortunes of the New Right, thereby garnering the attention of the public (as well as Richard Nixon) and achieving the vice-presidency in 1968. At the same time, H. Rap Brown saw his influence and that of the civil rights movement decline.

In addition to providing valuable insights into Richardson and Agnew, this study is one of the few to examine a community in a "border" state. Levy demonstrates that the goals of the movement were not universal, that strategies underwent constant political and social change, and that the impact on the micro level was not as clean and immediate as historians would have us believe.

Peter B. Levy is associate professor of history at York College of Pennsylvania. He is the author of The Civil Rights Movement and Let Freedom Ring: A Documentary History of the Civil Rights Movement.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813026381
Publisher:
University Press of Florida
Publication date:
08/28/2003
Series:
Southern Dissent Series
Edition description:
First
Pages:
264
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

List of Tables and Figures
Series Foreword
Acknowledgments
Introduction1
1The Contours of History9
2The Freedom Rides and the Birth of CNAC34
3A Cauldron of Hate73
4Good-bye to Gradualism91
5The Paradox of Change113
6If This Town Don't Come Around133
7The Final Act160
Conclusion: Cambridge and the History of the Movement181
Notes193
Bibliography219
Index231

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