Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery
Leon F. Litwack
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award
Based on hitherto unexamined sources: interviews with ex-slaves, diaries and accounts by former slaveholders, this "rich and admirably written book" (Eugene Genovese, The New York Times Book Review) aims to show how, during the Civil War and after Emancipation, blacks and whites interacted in ways that dramatized not only their mutual dependency, but the ambiguities and tensions that had always been latent in "the peculiar institution."
1. "The Faithful Slave"
2. Black Liberators
3. Kingdom Comin'
4. Slaves No More
5. How Free is Free?
6. The Feel of Freedom: Moving About
7. Back to Work: The Old Compulsions
8. Back to Work: The New Dependency
9. The Gospel and the Primer
10. Becoming a People
Of individual masters, unexpected changes in the military situation, the constant movement of troops, and widespread doubts about the validity and enforcement of the Emancipation Proclamation were bound to have a sobering effect on the slaves’ perceptions of their status and rights, leaving many of them quite confused if not thoroughly disillusioned. The sheer uncertainty of it all prompted blacks to weigh carefully their actions and utterances, as they had earlier in the war, even in some.
Deadlines on his patience. “Ye see, master, I am ashamed to say anything to her. But I don’t ’low to work any longer than to Christmas , and then I’ll ask for wages. But I want to leave the ferry. I’m a mighty good farmer, and I’ll get a piece of ground and a chunk of a hoss, if I can, and work for myself.”42 The number of slaves who waited for the master to confirm their freedom, rather than assert it independently, is not altogether surprising. Whether the enslaved worker had labored.
And also a Freedmen’s Bureau officer. To disarm the white critics, he maintained, “[w]e must be governed in this work by great prudence, and, so far as we possibly can without any compr[om]ise of principle, or conflict with truth, be controlled by policy and expediency.” It was not a matter of rights but of whether the exercise of those rights helped or hindered the cause to which they had dedicated themselves in the South. I have, for instance, a perfect right, if my taste run in that way, to.
(Part 2), 63–64; XIII: Ga. Narr. (Part 3), 177, (Part 4), 172; 39 Cong., 1 Sess., Report of the Joint Committee on Reconstruction, Part II, 99. 66. 39 Cong., 1 Sess., Senate Exec. Doc. 27, Reports of the Assistant Commissioners of the Freedmen’s Bureau [1865–1866], 65. 67. Lt. Col. H. R. Brinkerhoff to Maj. Gen. O. O. Howard, July 8, 1865, Records of the Assistant Commissioners, Mississippi (Letters Received), Freedmen’s Bureau; 39 Cong., 1 Sess., House Exec. Doc. 70, Freedmen’s Bureau, 288;.
Orleans, where he released slave prisoners from heavy chains and weights, one Union soldier said he had seen “enough of the horrors of slavery to make one an Abolitionist forever.” When several new black recruits stripped for a physical examination in Louisiana, prior to their induction, a Union soldier afterwards described in detail the marks which bondage had left on the bodies of these men. It was a depressing sight. Some of them were scarred from head to foot where they had been whipped. One.