Cincinnati in the 1870’s was the largest inland city in the nation. Much of its prosperity and growth it owed to the commerce which floated along its Ohio River boundary on the way between Pittsburgh and New Orleans. This traffic also sustained a unique African American culture—saloonkeepers, boardinghouse operators, entertainers, and women who served the steamboat hands between trips.
Into this great western metropolis came young Lafcadio Hearn, who after several tentative starts became a newspaper reporter first for the Enquirer and then for the Commercial. Drawn to the Ohio River by his interest in the unusual, Hearn found beneath ...Read More
In Kentucky, the first frontier beyond the Appalachians, Arthur K. Moore finds a unique ground for examining some of the basic elements in America’s cultural development. There the frontier mind acquired definite form, and there emerged the forces that largely shaped the American West.
Moore reveals the Kentucky frontiersman as a colorful, exciting figure about whom there gathered a golden haze of myth from which historians have never been able to free him. He finds that “noble savage” did not possess those high qualities of mind and spirit which both his contemporaries and present-day writers have attributed him. He especially ...Read More
The Bluegrass region of Kentucky was the only part of the slaveholding South Abraham Lincoln knew intimately. How the cultural environment of Lexington, the home of Lincoln’s wife, with its pleasure-loving aristocracy, its distinguished political leaders, and its slave auctions shaped his opinions on slavery and secession is traced in these pages.
In this city, early known as the “Athens of the West,” Lincoln’s alliance with the Todd family widened his circle of acquaintances to include such diverse personalities as the fiery Cassius M. Clay, who urged immediate emancipation; Dr. Robert J. Breckinridge, courageous Presbyterian minister, and the doctor’s nephew, ...Read More
In post-Civil War years agriculture in Mississippi, as elsewhere, was in a depressed condition. The price of cotton steadily declined, and the farmer was hard put to meet the payments on his mortgage. At the same time the corporate and banking interests of the state seemed to prosper. There were reasons for this beyond the ken of the poor hill farmer—the redneck, as he was popularly termed. But the redneck came to regard this situation—chronic depression for him while his mercantile neighbor prospered—as a conspiracy against him, a conspiracy which was aided and abetted by the leaders of his party....Read More
This charming account of life in Appalachia at the turn of the century is one of the three most important books from the early twentieth century that, as Dwight Billings writes in his foreword, have “had a profound and lasting impact on how we think about Appalachia and, indeed, on the fact that we commonly believe that such a place and people can be readily identified.” Originally published in 1924, it was advertised as a “racy book, full of the thrill of mountain adventure and the delicious humor of vigorously human people.” James Watt Raine, professor of English literature and ...Read More
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