In the Shadow of Freedom: The Politics of Slavery in the National Capital

In the Shadow of Freedom: The Politics of Slavery in the National Capital

by Paul Finkelman
     
 

ISBN-10: 082141934X

ISBN-13: 9780821419342

Pub. Date: 05/03/2011

Publisher: Ohio University Press

Few images of early America were more striking, and jarring, than that of slaves in the capital city of the world's most important free republic. Black slaves served and sustained the legislators, bureaucrats, jurists, cabinet officials, military leaders, and even the presidents who lived and worked there. While slaves quietly kept the nation's capital running

Overview

Few images of early America were more striking, and jarring, than that of slaves in the capital city of the world's most important free republic. Black slaves served and sustained the legislators, bureaucrats, jurists, cabinet officials, military leaders, and even the presidents who lived and worked there. While slaves quietly kept the nation's capital running smoothly, lawmakers debated the place of slavery in the nation, the status of slavery in the territories newly acquired from Mexico, and even the legality of the slave trade in itself.

This volume, with essays by some of the most distinguished historians in the nation, explores the twin issues of how slavery made life possible in the District of Columbia and how lawmakers in the district regulated slavery in the nation.

Contributors: David Brion Davis, Mary Beth Corrigan, A. Glenn Crothers, Jonathan Earle, Stanley Harrold, Mitch Kachun, Mary K. Ricks, James B. Stewart, Susan Zaeske, David Zarefsky

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780821419342
Publisher:
Ohio University Press
Publication date:
05/03/2011
Series:
Perspective Hist of Congress 1801-1877 Series
Edition description:
1
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Preface vii

Slavery in the Shadow of Liberty: The Problem of Slavery in Congress and the Nation's Capital Paul Finkelman 3

Part 1 Congress and Slavery in Context

The Impact of British Abolitionism on American Sectionalism David Brion Davis 19

Christian Statesmanship, Codes of Honor, and Congressional Violence: The Antislavery Travails and Triumphs of Joshua Giddings James B. Stewart 36

Gamaliel Bailey, Antislavery Journalist and Lobbyist Stanley Harrold 58

Saturday Nights at the Baileys': Building an Antislavery Movement in Congress, 1838-1854 Jonathan Earle 83

"A nest of rattlesnakes let loose among them": Congressional Debates over Women's Antislavery Petitions, 1835-1845 Susan Zaeske 97

Debating Slavery by Proxy: The Texas Annexation Controversy David Zarefsky 125

Part 2 The Politics of Slavery in the District of Columbia

The 1846 Retrocession of Alexandria: Protecting Slavery and the Slave Trade in the District of Columbia A. Glenn Crothers 141

"Whether they be ours or no, they may be heirs of the kingdom": The Pursuit of Family Ties among Enslaved People in the District of Columbia Mary Beth Corrigan 169

The 1848 Pearl Escape from Washington, D.C.: A Convergence of Opportunity, Motivation, and Political Action in the Nation's Capital Mary K. Ricks 195

Celebrating Emancipation and Contesting Freedom in Washington, D.C. Mitch Kachun 220

Contributors 239

Index 241

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