That would be a form of censorship, however—something that I do not condone. Fortunately I live in a country that basically prevents that sort of thing. I think that you did what you needed to do: you pointed out that a book that proposes to be based upon historical fact, is not based on historical fact. That is your job as an historian. Beyond that, the issue broadens and is not so clear. In addition to watching to Kill a Mockingbird with the kids, the adults in our group discussed how certain books had been temporarily banned in a public library several years ago—books like The Grapes of Wrath.
I suspect that Grapes of Wrath was banned for a number of political reasons arising from a political philosophy with which I do not agree. In order to keep Grapes of Wrath on the shelves, however, we have to put up with Family Guy and books on Black Confederates. That is the way it works, as you know. Congratulations on completing your manuscript! It matters, of course, that you get published.
Publish here, if all else fails. It is like opera being translated into English as it is performed in English speaking countries, or mass being said in English and Spanish, instead of in Latin, or the Bible being translated into German. A scarier notion is that the book will be picked up by the education entities and become part of a course curriculum. That could be damaging to our children.
I speak from experience. I was the only black kid in my class and there were only a handful of African American kids in the whole school k-8th grade. However, the damage was already done. There is a generation of whites who were taught by the public school system that blacks were inferior to them. Public education! Thanks for adding your voice to this discussion. I suspect that remembering ancestors as soldiers is much more pleasing than remembering the horrors of slavery, but in the end it comes down to a basic ignorance of the relevant history involved.
The Confederate government explicitly denied the rights of free and enslaved blacks to serve as soldiers. There is nothing controversial or even surprising about this given the fact that the government was working to protect slavery. Did you know? Of course I am aware of the legal discrimination present in the North throughout this period.
But what does that have to do with the subject of this post? I thought DB Cooper was never found after he parachuted from the Boeing that he hijacked in Perhaps he should go back into hiding, lest the FBI track him down. Nonetheless, I am astounded that he is courageous enough to use his real name when posting on this blog!
Sorry for the confusion. Actually, African-Americans were conscripted into the Union army, just like whte men, once the Enrollment Act of was signed into law and implemented. Mark is right about this. However, it is easy to misunderstand the process, because African American draftees were forwarded to units of the U. Colored Troops, which were classed as volunteers. A similar situation obtained for white draftees sent to state volunteer units. One should also remember that Confederate conscription of blacks was for service as laborers, whereas Union conscription was for service as soldiers.
So please explain the difference in a black man being conscripted by the north as a soldier and the south as a laborer. Is involuntary service slavery? And who built the earthworks for the north Involuntary Soldiers or laborers that were contraband? During WWII blacks were still for the most part cooks and support personnel, so by your definition they would not be soldiers or sailors? Or does the Slave vs Freeman make a difference. It should not.
If a slave works as a soldier and a free man by his side is doing the same thing; can you tell me they are two different military distinctions. I have arisen here in my place to offer a few words on the bill [raising funds for a Confederate Monument]. I have come from a sick bed, perhaps it was not prudent for me to come, but Sir, I could not rest quietly in my room without contributing a few remarks of my own. I was sorry the hear the speech of the young gentleman from Marshall County.
I am sorry that any son of a soldier should go on record as opposed to the erection of a monument in honor of the brave dead. The difference is that one fought as a soldier in the United States army and the other functioned as an impressed slave or servant personal slave within the Confederate army.
The former was a free man and the latter was not. Your comparison with WWII makes absolutely no sense given that they fought as United Soldiers, though you are correct in pointing out that they were discriminated against. The distinction has nothing to do with what jobs they performed, but with their official designation. This is not difficult. You will notice that your other comment was not approved. Are you arguing that the draft is slavery, and that selective service thus violates the 13th Amendment? To my mind, the salient difference between the thousands of men enlisted in the USCT and the thousands of African Americans conscripted as laborers by the Confederacy is that the former were regularly issued arms and ammunition, and the latter were not.
Entangled Freedom: An Interview with Charles Johnson
What is so curious is the inability of so many to appreciate why Confederate authorities would have been hesitant to equip slaves with rifles. White southerners expended a great deal of energy preventing such an occurrence throughout the antebellum period. Sorry Kevin my computer burped, the second comment was simply the finish of the speech given by Legislator Richard Harris. But they died, and their virtues should be remembered. Sir, I went with them. I too, wore the Gray, the same color my master wore.
We stayed four long years, and if that war had gone on till now I would have been there yet. I want to honor those brave men who died for their convictions. When my mother died I was a boy. Were she living now, or could speak to me from those high realms where are gathered the sainted dead, she would tell me to vote for this bill. And, Sir, I shall vote for it. I want it known to all the world that my vote is given in favor of the bill to erect a monument in honor of the Confederate dead.
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On the day of the vote, former Slave John Harris was joined in equaled zeal by 6 other Black Representatives in the Mississippi Legislature to pass the bill for the Confederate Memorial. It is amazing how much history has been deliberately buried and suppressed. My source-T J Lorenzo. If you want to know if any individual served as a soldier in the Confederate ranks you need to consult the relevant primary sources.
You need to check out the relevant muster rolls and enlistment papers for the individual. Lorenzo is not a serious historian and he certainly has not done any research on this topic. I have no idea what sources Lorenzo used nor do I have any way of identifying the individuals referenced in your quote. Please understand that this is not the way to go about researching this subject. Slaves were not enlisted as soldiers. The Confederate government was explicit on this issue until the very end of the war. What exactly do you think you are looking for?
Again, go to the regimental records and find the papers. Anything short of that is a complete waste of time. These legislators were neither at the time of the vote — they were politicians keeping an eye on getting out the white vote! When the news came that the South had been invaded, those men went forth to fight for what they believed, and they made no requests for monuments. But the point is that DiLorenzo does not have a version since he has not done any research on this issue.
If you can show me a study that he has done on this issue than perhaps I will have something more to say. It is a fairly straightforward process to determine whether an individual served as a soldier. Again, you need to look at the muster rolls and enlistment papers. If he has than you ought to share it with us. He came to that conclusion after conducting a great deal of research over the years, weighing all of it carefully, and presenting his evidence pro and con as well as his conclusions in print, where others could weigh and critique it.
Who was he? What was going on in Mississippi in February ? Does it matter that a few months later a brand new Mississippi state constitution would throw him and other black legislators out of office, or legally deny all blacks the right to vote? Is it possible that he was trying to head that off?
Librarika: Entangled in Freedom: A Civil War Story: The Street Life Series Youth Edition
And how would a court judge evidence presented 35 years after the fact? If the book is fantasy or alternative history like the one about what things might have been like if Lee had automatic weapons at Gettysburg , then describe it as such. BTW, you are the only one bringing up book burning. Born in Kentucky in to a white mother and mulatto father, he served in the Civil War as a black Confederate soldier. Following the war, he moved to Gallatin. He was a personal servant to Dr.
John L. Peter Vertrees was not recognized either in or by his Tennessee pension as a soldier.
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Here is his pension application:. Next post: Not Important You Say? Copyright c by Kevin M. All rights reserved. Please do not reprint original material from this blog without permission. Here is a short description: Entangled in Freedom, the first novel in this young adult fiction book series, takes a closer look at the life experiences of African-Americans in the Deep South during the War Between the States. The Emancipationist Jul 26, Reply Link. Kevin Levin Jul 27, Brian W.
Schoeneman Jul 27, Take a deep breath. What do you read to your children? Shelby Foote? Brooks D. Simpson Jul 27, Andy Hall Jul 27, Jonathan Dresner Jul 27, Rob Wick Jul 27, Best Rob. Andy, LOL. Rob, I appreciate the kind words. Rory Washburne Oct 9, Kevin Levin Oct 9, Thanks for the comment and thanks for reading. Rob, I can only speak from my own experience. Brian, Of course I understand that one must be very careful in working with primary sources.
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Brian, I just explained to you the question that guides my interest in this subject. Brooks, Thanks for the thoughtful comment. Marianne Davis Jul 27, Hi Marianne, Thanks for the comment. Brooks, I know your response was in reply to Jonathan, but I tend to agree with you that it is better to comment on books only after having read it. Vicki Betts Jul 28, Vicki Betts. Kevin Levin Jul 28, Hi Vicki, I am going to have to go back and double-check, but I believe the Confederate government conscripted free blacks as cooks, teamsters, and other support roles beginning in spring Again, if I remember correctly she comments on Virginia and North Carolina.
Margaret D. Blough Jul 28, The act of Congress relative to the employment of free negroes and slaves in certain capacities and the instructions of the War Department relative to its execution are published for the information of those concerned: AN ACT to increase the efficiency of the Army by the employment of free negroes and slaves in certain capacities. Schoeneman Jul 28, Blough Jul 31, Emmanuel Dabney Jul 28, Sherree Aug 1, Hi Kevin, Interesting post, as always. Kevin Levin Aug 1, Hi Sherree, Nice to hear from you and thanks for the kind words.
I am happy to be finished. George Geder Aug 14, Kevin Levin Aug 15, Geder, Thanks for adding your voice to this discussion. D B Cooper Sep 22, Kevin Have you read the book? The North did not want blacks to live with them! Kevin Levin Sep 22, Mark Snell Sep 22, Kevin Levin Sep 23, Kevin Levin Sep 24, Mark Snell Sep 24, Mike Musick Sep 24, Hi Mike. Thanks so much for the clarification and Fry reference.
D B Cooper Sep 24, Thanks you for the clairification. Simpson Sep 24, So was he a soldier or a slave? Denise, If you want to know if any individual served as a soldier in the Confederate ranks you need to consult the relevant primary sources. Jerry McKenzie Feb 14, My source was T J Lorenzo.
Ken Noe Sep 25, Kevin Levin Sep 25, Hi Ken, Thanks for providing the context for that particular reference. Kevin Levin Sep 26, Thanks for the suggestion, but I am not a fan of book burning. Blough Sep 26, Kevin Levin Feb 21, This source provides not one piece of evidence for the claim. Andy Hall Feb 21, Now that you've read the post, share your thoughts.
Cancel reply. Pre-Order Your Copy Now! In Bookstores Soon. Jeff Davis has not given the order for black soldiers to fight in the Confederacy. Look at this. The enlistment on this report just says Isaac Green. No one would ever know from this paper that Isaac is a black rebel. Isaac is the best rider in Newton County. If you boys want to win this war, I suggest that Isaac be assigned to the mounted cavalry because we need skilled riders to travel the rugged terrains at Cumberland Gap.
No one wants to believe that there are some areas in the south w[h]ere whites and blacks get along fine. I am saying that loyalty delivers a great prize. What do you say Chaplain Isaac? Yes, a truly remarkable and disturbing excerpt. Notice that DeWitt and Weeks offer their own explanation as to how black men ended up as enlisted soldiers in the Confederate army. First, local courthouses were clearly formally enlisting them all over the South without any knowledge on the part of the Confederate government.
More importantly, they can always point out that lack of any racial identification on the enlistment papers if asked to provide evidence for the presence of black soldiers. About the author: Thank you for taking the time to read this post. What next? Scroll down and join the discussion in the comments section.
Looking for more Civil War content? You can follow me on Twitter. Pre-order your copy today. Every time I am introduced to one of these distortions my first reaction is fury. How dare they twist what we do know of the past, or just lie, usually to make a point about the present. But as I continue looking at the growing list of such distortions, I find that my reaction is turning to great sadness.
Apart from the insane presentation above that Southerners who did not hold slaves believed in racial equality, and local draft boards were busily arming men held in bondage, they are saying something tragic about contemporary race relations. Very telling that Isaac is bound to Abraham. I wonder if God will tell the father to sacrifice the son? And if there are any rams tangled in thickets in the vicinity of the 42nd Georgia that he could employ as a substitute? The point of writing a fantasy novel is they can avoid actual history.
They can make up any fact or build any strawman they want. And we can see from the this excerpt, the real point is to rehabilitate the Confederacy, not tell the story of a black person. But more importantly, it is reflection of their overly simplistic understanding of the role of slavery and race in antebellum Georgia. Non-slaveowners were intimately connected to the preservation of slavery and white supremacy in numerous ways.
I believe he states that 5 out of every 9 men who joined the ANV from lived in a household with slaves. You have to hang on at least until they meet up with Howell Cobb. I can already imagine the exchange:. The day you make a soldier of them is the beginning of the end of the Revolution. And if slaves seem good soldiers, then our whole theory of slavery is wrong. Even better, imagine a conversation with Patrick Cleburne after his proposal had been issued. Do the authors really expect that readers, some of whom, do not have a deep knowledge of the Civil War, will accept that somehow, one of the most documented and reported events, in United States history, from not only Northern and Southern reporters but also from European reporters, could have miss documenting and reporting this factoid until they found it?
My only answer is that the authors assume that readers will accept this nonsense and fantasy. This passage, in the novel, reminds me of comic books that I read when I was a kid. In fact, from my perspective, this novel is a comic book, therefore, I expect that Superman, Batman, Wonder Wonder, or Spider-Man, to show up somewhere, before Mr.
Levin finish if he wants to finish this comic book novel.
They will accept this story and its broader narrative without question. Levin, I stand corrected. Sounds like propaganda. Also: Entangled In Freedom? It included people who furnished goods and services including legal and banking services to both the slave owners and the slave traders.
Furthermore, there was a massive industry in leasing slave labor. It was a way of 1 providing income for family members of slaveowners. Reopening the African trade would push prices down and also have more manageable non-Westernized slaves. As James Hammond made clear in the Mudsill section of his infamous King Cotton speech, the key to planter control of the non-slaveholding white, particularly the poorer ones, was to put blacks and keep blacks in a subordinate caste below even the poorest white, whose skin color was his badge of status and bond with richer whites. Another thing that the book omits was that, in many slave states, it was illegal to teach slaves to read.
Black preachers were particularly suspect because of their broader contact with slaves and their knowledge of inconvenient for whites portions of the Bible like the Book of Exodus. One who had actually memorized the entire Bible would be particularly suspect. I suppose then we should be using the name of the book, Entangled In Freedom, as much as possible in these comments.