Love and Marriage in Early African America

Love and Marriage in Early African America

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by Frances Smith Foster
     
 

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ISBN-10: 155553676X

ISBN-13: 9781555536763

Pub. Date: 12/31/2007

Publisher: Northeastern University Press

Love and Marriage in Early African America brings together a remarkable range of folk sayings, rhymes, songs, poems, letters, lectures, sermons, short stories, memoirs, and autobiographies. Spanning over 100 years, from the slave era to the New Negro Movement, this extraordinary collection contradicts or nuances established notions that slavery fractured families,

Overview

Love and Marriage in Early African America brings together a remarkable range of folk sayings, rhymes, songs, poems, letters, lectures, sermons, short stories, memoirs, and autobiographies. Spanning over 100 years, from the slave era to the New Negro Movement, this extraordinary collection contradicts or nuances established notions that slavery fractured families, devalued sexual morality, distorted gender roles, and set in motion forces that now produce dismal and dangerous domestic situations. A culmination of twenty years of diligent research by noted scholar Frances Smith Foster, this anthology features selections on love and courtship, marriage, marriage rituals, and family. A compelling introduction places the primary texts in their social and literary context. A bibliography offers suggestions for further reading.

This volume includes materials by well known writers such as Frances E. W. Harper, Charles Chesnutt, and Alice Dunbar Nelson, but the majority of works are previously unknown or difficult-to-access materials. Many provide startling contrasts to representations in canonical literature. For example, “Patrick Brown’s First Love” is a radical alternative to Frederick Douglass’s “The Heroic Slave,” and Thomas Detter’s “The Octoroon” replaces the traditionally tragic mulatto trope with a female protagonist who shocks and awes. Love and Marriage in Early African America also changes our ideas about the relationship between religion and politics in early African America by featuring texts from the Afro-Protestant press; that is, the publishing organizations, writers, and reading groups under the direct auspices of, or publicly associated with, Afro-Protestant churches.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781555536763
Publisher:
Northeastern University Press
Publication date:
12/31/2007
Series:
Northeastern Library of Black Literature
Pages:
360
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.20(d)

Related Subjects

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Introduction: By Way of an Open Letter to My Sister

Lyrics
What’s You Lookin’ at Me Fer?
Love Is Jes a Thing o’ Fancy
You Loves Yo’ Gal?
Creole Candio,
One Sweet Kiss
On Friendship - Phillis Wheatley (1769)
Philis’ Reply - Phillis Wheatley (1774)
Behave Yourself, from Freedom’s Journal (1827)
Lines to My——— - George Moses Horton (1843)
Courting in Connecticut, from Provincial Freeman (1855)
To Annie, from the Pacific Appeal (1862)
To Miss W - A. I[slay] Walden (1873?)
Dedicated to a Young Lady - A. I[slay] Walden (1873)
A Negro Love Song - Paul Laurence Dunbar (1895)
Dinah Kneading Dough - Paul Laurence Dunbar (1899)
Show Your Love - James E. McGirt (1901)
The Parting Kiss - Jos. D. H. Heard (1901)
Jessie and I - Timothy Thomas Fortune (1905)
Kiss Me Again - Samuel Alfred Beadle (1912)
Love’s Lament - Olive Ward Bush-Banks (1914)
Filled with You - Olive Ward Bush-Banks (1920)

Lyrics
Does You Lak Strawberries? - Anonymous
W’en I Wus a “Roustabout,” - Anonymous
She Hug Me - Anonymous
A Letter - Anonymous
You Nasty Dog! - Anonymous
Pretty Liddle Pink - Anonymous
Is It So? from Freedom’s Journal (1827)
Stanzas, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
To Eliza - George Moses Horton (1829)
Forget Me Not - Ann Plato (1841)
Farewell to Frances - George Moses Horton (1865)
A Love Song - John Willis Menard (1879)
A Double Standard - Frances E[llen] W[atkins] Harper (1893)
Sence You Went Away - James Weldon Johnson (1900)
Regret - Olive Ward Bush-Banks (1914)
Violets - Alice Dunbar Nelson (1917)
The Heart of a Woman - Georgia Douglas Johnson (1918)

Fiction
A Christmas Sketch - Mrs. M. B. Lambert (1882)
Violets - Alice Dunbar Nelson (1895)
“There Was One Time!” - Jessie Fauset (1917)

Letters
From Phillis Wheatley to Obour Tanner (1773)
From Harriet to Freedom’s Journal (1827)
From Amelia to Freedom’s Journal (1827)
From Criticus to Freedom’s Journal (1827)
From Tom Little to Freedom’s Journal (1827)
From Henry H. Garnet to “Dear Friend” (1837)
From William H. Wormley to Catto (1860)
From Addie Brown to Rebecca Primus (1859–1867)
Autobiographical Accounts
William Grimes, from Life of William Grimes (1855)
James Williams, from Life and Adventures of James Williams (1893)
Fannie Berry, from Federal Writers Project (ca. 1937)

  — 

Lyrics
Aurore Pradère - Anonymous
W’en I Goes to Marry - Anonymous
Lines, Written on hearing a beautiful Young Lady express a determination to live an Old Maid, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
A Young Lady’s Soliloquy, from the Christian Recorder (1864)
The Cheerless Condition of Bachelorship, George Moses Horton (1865)
Report, Frances E[llen] W[atkins] Harper (1867)
Advice to Girls, Frances E[llen] W[atkins] Harper (1868)
The Young Man’s Comforter, A. I[slay] Walden (1873)
One to Love, A. I[slay] Walden (1873)

Fiction
A Woman and an Angel, from Provincial Freeman (1855)
The Two Offers, Frances Ellen Watkins [Harper] (1859)

Nonfiction
On Marriage, from The Doctrines and Discipline of the African Methodist Episcopal Church (1817)
A Bachelor’s Thermometer, from Freedom’s Journal (1827)
The Old Maid’s Diary, from Freedom’s Journal (1827)
“Sic a Wife,” from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
An Unmarried Woman, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
A Gold Repeater, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
Lewis White Advertises, from Freedom’s Journal (1829)
Two School Girls - Ann Plato (1841)
A Bachelor Advertises, from Provincial Freeman (1855)
Matrimony, from Repository of Religion and Literature (1859)
To Avoid a Bad Husband, from the Christian Recorder (1861)
The Pleasures of Single Life, from the Pacific Appeal (1864)
Young Ladies of To-Day, from the Christian Recorder (1864)
How to Make Bean Soup, from the Christian Recorder (1865)
Yoked Unequally, from the Christian Recorder (1876)
Bigamy, from Life and Adventures of James Williams (1893)

  

Lyrics
Wedding Colors - Anonymous
Slave Marriage - Anonymous
Written in a Bride’s Album - A[fred] G[ibbs] Campbell (1883)
Marriage - Mary Weston Fordham (1897)

Fiction
Conversation, from Southern Workman (1895)

Nonfiction
Miseries of an Engaged Man, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
Miseries of an Engaged Woman, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
Getting Married without Knowing How It Was to Be Done, from the Christian Recorder (1861)
Marriage of Rev. John Beckett to Miss Kate Campbell, from the Christian Recorder (1876)

Autobiographical Accounts
Thomas Tompkins, from Freedom’s Journal
William Grimes, from Life of William Grimes
Harriet Jacobs, from Incidents in the Life
When Two of the Slaves, Harriett McFarlin Payne, from Rawick,
American Slave: A Composite Autobiography (ca. 1937)
The War Went On, from Ophelia Settle Egypt, Unwritten History of Slavery
Iffen Any of the Slaves, Aunt Virginia Bell from Rawick, American Slave: A Composite Autobiography (ca. 1937)
I Had a Nice Weddin’, Sarah Allen, from Rawick, American Slave: A Composite Autobiography (ca. 1937)
De Way Dey Done, Jeff Calhoun, from Rawick, American Slave: A Composite Autobiography (ca. 1937)

 

Lyrics
Three Months Married – Anonymous
To a Lady on the Death of Her Husband - Phillis Wheatley (1772)
To the Bride, from Freedom’s Journal (1828)
Connubial Felicity - George Moses Horton (1845)
The Fugitive’s Wife - Frances Ellen Watkins [Harper] (1857)
The Old Couple, from the Christian Recorder
The Wife’s Invocation - John Menard Willis (1879)
To Elder T. Wellington Henderson, from the Christian Recorder (1879)
Dearest - Robert C. O. Benjamin (1883)
To My Absent Wife - A[fred] G[ibbs] Campbell (1883)
To Mr. and Mrs. W. F. Johnson - Frances E[llen] W[atkins] Harper (1886)
Tired - Fenton Johnson (1919)

Fiction
Dialogue between a Newly Married Couple, from Provincial Freeman (1855)
Mr. Pepper’s Wife, from Provincial Freeman (1855)
Patrick Brown’s First Love, from the Anglo-African Magazine (1859)
Anecdotal: An Old and True Friend, from the Christian Recorder (1869)
Octoroon Slave of Cuba - Thomas Detter (1871)
The Wife of His Youth - Charles W. Chesnutt (1899)
Bro’r Abr’m Jimson’s Wedding - Pauline E. Hopkins (1901)

Nonfiction
Whisper to a Wife, from Colored American (1837)
The Intemperate Husband, from Colored American (1837)
Tell Your Wife, from Pacific Appeal (1862)
A Chapter for Young Husbands, from the Christian Recorder (1864)
A Tin Wedding, from the Christian Recorder (1876)
A Bereaved Wife, from the Christian Recorder (1880)

Letters
From Jane Stephens to Freedom’s Journal (1827)
From James Stephens to Freedom’s Journal (1827)
From George Pleasant to Agnes Hobbs (1833)
From Marie Perkins to Husband (1852)
From Abream Scriven to Wife (1858)
From Harriet Newby to Dangerfield Newby (1859)
From Harriet Newby to Dangerfield Newby (1859)
From Ann to Husband (1864)
Autobiographical Accounts
Jarena Lee, from Life and Religious Experience of Jarena Lee (1836)
Lunsford Lane, from Narrative of Lunsford Lane (1848)
Henry Bibb, from The Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb (1849)
Josiah Henson, from Father Henson’s Story of His Own Life (1858)
Noah Davis, from A Narrative of the Life of Rev. Noah Davis (1859)
J. D. Green, from The Narrative of the Life of J. D. Green (1864)
Elizabeth Keckley, from Behind the Scenes (1868)

Lyrics
Daughter’s Inquiry - Ann Plato (1841)
Our Family Tree - Joseph Cephas Holly (1853)
My Child, from Provincial Freeman (1855)
Old Grimes’ Son, from Life of William Grimes (1855)
The Home for Me, from the Christian Recorder (1872)
The Lonely Mother - Fenton Johnson (1916)

Fiction
Charles and Clara Hayes - Mrs. Lucie S. Day (1853)
Dialogue Between a Mother and Her Children on the
Precious Stones – Mrs. Sarah Douglas (1859)
The Voice of the Rich Pudding – Gertrude D[orsey] Browne (1907)

Letters
From John H. Rapier to His Son John (1857)
From Parker Smith to “My dear Sir” (1861)
From Rebecca Primus to Parents and Sister (1976)
From Dave Waldro to Cousin (1867)
Information Wanted, from the Christian Recorder (1864–1893)
Information Wanted from the Christian Recorder, January 6, 1893 (1893)

Nonfiction
The Dying Bed of a Mother, from Colored American (1837)
The Use of Grandmothers, from the Christian Recorder (1864)
Aunt Jennie the Old Maid, from the Christian Recorder (1873)

Autobiographical Accounts
Samuel Ringgold Ward, from Autobiography of a Fugitive Negro (1855)
Williams Grimes, from Life of William Grimes (1855)
Thomas Jones, from Narrative of a Refugee Slave (1857)
James Williams, from Life and Adventures of James Williams (1893)
My Mother as I Recall Her, Rosetta Douglass Sprague (1900)
Of the Passing of the First-Born, W. E. B. DuBois (1901)

Suggestions for Further Reading

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Love and Marriage in Early African America 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Henry_Berry More than 1 year ago
Foster's research for this anthology 10 years in the making carried her widely. She found examples of African American love and marriage in songs, letters, stories, poems, memoirs, lectures, sermons, folk sayings, oral history, and autobiographies. This interrelated material from a wide diversity of sources is organized into the natural flow of feelings and types of relationships between men and women. The first chapter is In Love - With Love the second, Whether to Marry - and Who? followed by Proposals and Vows, then Married Life with the final section of on generations of a family titled Family Trees Rooted - in Love. Within each chapter, the selections are grouped according to kind all the poems and excerpts together, excerpts from longer writings such as stories together, etc. The selections in each grouping are arranged chronologically following any anonymous writings when applicable coming first. The bulk of the writings are from the 1830s or so to the mid 1930s with the majority from after the Civil War to the Harlem Renaissance. A small number are from the Colonial era. While giving attention to a little-covered theme running through African American life from its earliest days, as Foster notes in her introductory essay, the anthology coincidentally brings to notice little-known African American writers and discloses the presence of an established African American printing business. Thus, the anthology is also in some measure a collection of uncommon African American literature for studies in this area and it casts light on aspects of African American economic activity not widely known about. The lengthy bibliography is notably useful for further pursuit of all the major and secondary subjects entailed in the anthology.