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Race, War, and Remembrance in the Appalachian South

Overview

Among the most pervasive of stereotypes imposed upon southern highlanders is that they were white, opposed slavery, and supported the Union before and during the Civil War, but the historical record suggests far different realities. John C. Inscoe has spent much of his scholarly career exploring the social, economic and political significance of slavery and slaveholding in the mountain South and the complex nature of the region's wartime loyalties, and the brutal guerrilla warfare and home front traumas that ...

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Overview

Among the most pervasive of stereotypes imposed upon southern highlanders is that they were white, opposed slavery, and supported the Union before and during the Civil War, but the historical record suggests far different realities. John C. Inscoe has spent much of his scholarly career exploring the social, economic and political significance of slavery and slaveholding in the mountain South and the complex nature of the region's wartime loyalties, and the brutal guerrilla warfare and home front traumas that stemmed from those divisions. The essays here embrace both facts and fictions related to those issues, often conveyed through intimate vignettes that focus on individuals, families, and communities, keeping the human dimension at the forefront of his insights and analysis. Drawing on the memories, memoirs, and other testimony of slaves and free blacks, slaveholders and abolitionists, guerrilla warriors, invading armies, and the highland civilians they encountered, Inscoe considers this multiplicity of perspectives and what is revealed about highlanders' dual and overlapping identities as both a part of, and distinct from, the South as a whole. He devotes attention to how the truths derived from these contemporary voices were exploited, distorted, reshaped, reinforced, or ignored by later generations of novelists, journalists, filmmakers, dramatists, and even historians with differing agendas over the course of the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His cast of characters includes John Henry, Frederick Law Olmsted and John Brown, Andrew Johnson and Zebulon Vance, and those who later interpreted their stories — John Fox and John Ehle, Thomas Wolfe and Charles Frazier, Emma Bell Miles and Harry Caudill, Carter Woodson and W. J. Cash, Horace Kephart and John C. Campbell, even William Faulkner and Flannery O'Connor. Their work and that of many others have contributed much to either our understanding — or misunderstanding — of nineteenth century Appalachia and its place in the American imagination.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Inscoe's writing style is engaging, and his interdisciplinary approach to Appalachian themes will intrigue…readers" —Mary A. Waalkes, North Carolina Historical Review" —

"Inscoe is at his best in this and other essays examining class interests, regional leadership and history, and gendered responses to war" —Mary A. Waalkes, North Carolina Historical Review" —

"Readers will be reminded that some historians approach the past with creativity and that Inscoe has made a significant contribution to the current understanding of southern Appalachia's place within the South and the nation." —Tom Lee, The Journal of American History" —

"[Inscoe] uses a wide range of relative case studies to support his insights about wartime conditions in the unusual case of Appalachia. Furthermore, the work is especially valuable because no other book deals with this broad topic." —John Cimprich, American Historical Review" —

"Using letters, journals, and memoirs of slaves, slaveholders, and abolitionists, Inscoe explores the reality of slavery and racial attitudes of the times, and how these beliefs have been misunderstood and distorted from the 19th century up to the present day." —Goldenseal" —

"Throughout the collection Inscoe successfully challenges previous perceptions of Appalachia, showing how it is both less coherent as a separate region and more southern than commonly thought. Race, War, and Remembrance will change how people conceptualize Appalachia." —West Virginia History" —

"What ultimately charms the reader is Inscoe's wonderful eye for stories."—Virginia Magazine of History and Biography" —

"This book will be a boon to readers interested in easily accessing some of the region's most important scholarship." —Ohio Valley History" —

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813193007
  • Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
  • Publication date: 11/1/2009
  • Pages: 412
  • Product dimensions: 0.92 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Meet the Author

John C. Inscoe, professor at the University of Georgia, is the author or editor of numerous books, including Appalachians and Race: The Mountain South from Slavery to Segregation.

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Table of Contents

1 Race and Racism in Nineteenth-Century Appalachia: Myths, Realities, and Ambiguities 13

2 Between Bondage and Freedom: Confronting the Variables of Appalachian Slavery and Slaveholding 46

3 Olmsted in Appalachia: A Connecticut Yankee Encounters Slavery in the Southern Highlands, 1854 65

4 Mountain Masters as Confederate Opportunists: The Slave Trade in Western North Carolina, 1861-1865 80

5 The Secession Crisis and Regional Self-image: The Contrasting Cases of Western North Carolina and East Tennessee 103

6 Highland Households Divided: Familial Deceptions, Diversions, and Divisions in Southern Appalachia's Inner Civil War with Gordon B. McKinney 124

7 Coping in Confederate Appalachia: Portrait of a Mountain Woman and Her Community at War 144

8 "Moving through Deserter Country": Fugitive Accounts of Southern Appalachia's Inner Civil War 175

9 "Talking Heroines": Elite Mountain Women as Chroniclers of Stoneman's Raid, April 1865 204

10 The Racial "Innocence" of Appalachia: William Faulkner and the Mountain South 227

11 A Fugitive Slave in Frontier Appalachia: The Journey of August King on Film 242

12 "A Northern Wedge Thrust into the Heart of the Confederacy": Explaining Civil War Loyalties in the Age of Appalachian Discovery, 1900-1921 256

13 Unionists in the Attic: The Shelton Laurel Massacre Dramatized 282

14 Appalachian Odysseus: Love, War, and Best-sellerdom in the Blue Ridge 303

15 Guerrilla War and Remembrance: Reconstructing a Father's Murder and a Community's Civil War 322

16 Race and Remembrance in West Virginia: John Henry for a Postmodernist Age 350

17 In Defense of Appalachia onFilm: Hollywood, History, and the Highland South 364

Credits 381

Index 385

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