Description : Late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century landowners in the hinterlands of Baltimore, Maryland, cobbled together workforces from a diverse labor population of black and white apprentices, indentured servants, slaves, and hired workers. This book examines the intertwined lives of the poor whites, slaves, and free blacks who lived and worked in this wheat-producing region along the Mason-Dixon Line. Drawing from court records, the diaries, letters, and ledgers of farmers and small planters, and other archival sources, Max Grivno reconstructs how these poorest of southerners eked out their livings and struggled to maintain their families and their freedom in the often unforgiving rural economy.
Description : Dred Scott and his landmark Supreme Court case are ingrained in the national memory, but he was just one of multitudes who appealed for their freedom in courtrooms across the country. Appealing for Liberty is the most comprehensive study to give voice to these African Americans, drawing from more than 2,000 suits and from the testimony of more than 4,000 plaintiffs from the Revolutionary era to the Civil War. Through the petitions, evidence, and testimony introduced in these court proceedings, the lives of the enslaved come sharply and poignantly into focus, as do many other aspects of southern society such as the efforts to preserve and re-unite black families. This book depicts in graphic terms, the pain, suffering, fears, and trepidations of the plaintiffs while discussing the legal systemlawyers, judges, juries, and testimonythat made judgments on their "causes," as the suits were often called. Arguments for freedom were diverse: slaves brought suits claiming they had been freed in wills and deeds, were born of free mothers, were descendants of free white women or Indian women; they charged that they were illegally imported to some states or were residents of the free states and territories. Those who testified on their behalf, usually against leaders of their communities, were generally white. So too were the lawyers who took these cases, many of them men of prominence, such as Francis Scott Key. More often than not, these men were slave owners themselves-- complicating our understanding of race relations in the antebellum period. A majority of the cases examined here were not appealed, nor did they create important judicial precedent. Indeed, most of the cases ended at the county, circuit, or district court level of various southern states. Yet the narratives of both those who gained their freedom and those who failed to do so, and the issues their suits raised, shed a bold and timely light on the history of race and liberty in the "land of the free."
Description : The book edition of Constitutions of the World from the late 18th Century to the middle of the 19th Century is the most complete and academically thorough collection of its kind. It contains constitutional documents from all over the world, written from 1776 to the end of the year 1849. This collection includes about 1,600 constitutions, amendments, human rights declarations, and draughts of constitutions that never came into force, from this period. These early constitutional documents were collected and examined in archives and libraries all over the world, as part of a project by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation). Using the original documents, experts from American and European universities reconstructed the authentic constitution texts for each country, and annotated them in their respective original languages. Each volume contains a short introduction, a main part with the edited constitution documents of a country, comments and an index. The unique value of the complete edition lies in its making all constitutions, from the early phase of modern constitutionalism, accessible in a reliable, authentic text version for the first time. These constitutions were widely scattered until now and, in many cases, unknown. In all, constitutional documents from about 50 countries in Europe and the Americas will be published in volumes for each country. Constitutions of the World from the late 18th Century to the Middle of the 19th Century is a unique and fundamental source edition and an extensive documentation of constitutional history. At the same time, it supplements the microfiche edition Constitutions of the World 1850 to the Present. The editor, Horst Dippel, is Professor of British and North American History at the University of Kassel, Germany.
Description : Few countries of its size have attracted more attention, and aroused more controversy, than Israel. This book provides, in a single source, a comprehensive and up-to-date reference volume with detailed information about every aspect of the political life of contemporary Israel, as well as serving as a comprehensive guide to the complexities and nuances of contemporary Israeli politics. It fills a gap in the literature by providing comprehensive information about the various diplomatic and political personalities, institutions, organizations, events, concepts, and documents that together define the political life of the Jewish state.
Description : Volume 15 documents the period from 1 January through 30 April 1794, a time when Washington continued to focus his efforts as president on preventing the United States from becoming entangled in the continuing war between France and Great Britain. Of particular concern was French and British interference with American shipping, despite claims of neutral rights by the United States. Congress reacted to this problem in late March by declaring a thirty-day embargo on all ships and vessels in American ports, and the Washington administration enforced this resolution, as well as a series of earlier Cabinet decisions regarding the presence of foreign privateers and their prizes in American ports. The threat of U.S. involvement in the war led Congress to pass legislation designed to increase the military strength of the United States. As a result, Washington and Secretary of War Henry Knox directed the construction of coastal fortifications, the establishment of federal armories, and the creation of an American navy. The European war also produced an exodus of refugees to the United States from the French colony of Saint Domingue and a subsequent federal program of monetary relief, which the administration oversaw. The question of neutral rights, the threat of an Indian war in the Northwest Territory, British retention of military posts in American territory, and a desire for a favorable trade agreement prompted Washington to appoint John Jay as envoy extraordinary to Great Britain in order to resolve these issues. At the same time, other U.S. diplomats continued their efforts to reach an understanding with Spain over the right of free navigation of the Mississippi River by Americans, Indian unrest in the Southwest Territory, and the boundary between Georgia and Florida, as well as to obtain a commercial treaty between the two nations. In an effort to manage his Mount Vernon farms while residing in Philadelphia, Washington regularly sent detailed instructions to William Pearce, his newly hired estate manager. Of particular concern were the implementation of a five-year plan of crop rotation designed by Washington in 1793 and the acquisition of a sufficient supply of buckwheat and other seed for spring planting. Washington continued to be a benevolent benefactor for his extended family, particularly his sister, Betty Washington Lewis, and his orphaned niece, Harriot Washington. He also directed the refurbishment of his house in Alexandria, Va., for Frances Bassett Washington, the widow of his nephew George Augustine Washington, and he made arrangements to purchase lots in the new Federal City.