Description : Despite the vast changes in plantation agriculture following the Civil War and Reconstruction, the lot of small farmers was little improved. Examining the nonplantation region of upcountry Georgia as a microcosm of the South, Steven Hahn showed how farmers were buffeted by such forces as the unravelling of antebellum household economy, the development of market forces, the growth of a new class of merchants-landlords, and rising tensions between town and countryside--and how their resentments fueld the Populist movement at the end of the 19th century. For this updated edition, Hahn will add new material to discuss how the book has stood up since it was published over twenty years ago, how the arguments and questions were received, and what influence they may have had on scholarship. He will also consider what has happened to historical interest in Populism, poor white people and populist politics, as well as why he thinks it likely that interest may revive and what sort of questions and arguments may drive it.
Description : In 1835, Winston and Salem was a well-ordered, bucolic, and attractive North Carolina town. A visitor could walk up Main Street from the village square and get a sense of the quiet Moravian community that had settled here. Yet, over the next half-century, this idyllic village was to experience dramatic changes. The Industrial Revolution calls forth images of great factories, mills, and machinery; yet, the character of the Industrial Revolution went beyond mere changes in modes of production. It meant the radical transformation of economic, social, and political institutions, and the emergence of a new mindset that brought about new ways of thinking and acting. Here is the illuminating story of Winston-Salem, a community of artisans and small farmers united, as members of a religious congregation, by a single vision of life. Transformed in just a few decades from an agricultural region into the home of the smokestacks and office towers of the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company and the Wachovia Bank and Trust Company, the Moravian community at Salem offers an illuminating illustration of the changes that swept Southern society in the nineteenth century and the concomitant development in these communities of a new ethos. Providing a rich wealth of information about the Winston-Salem community specifically, From Congregation Town to Industrial City also significantly broadens our understanding of how wholesale changes in the nineteenth century South redefined the meaning and experience of community. For, by the end of the century, community had gained an entirely new meaning, namely as a forum in which competing individuals pursued private opportunities and interests.
Description : After Lee and Grant met at Appomatox Court House in 1865 to sign the document ending the long and bloody Civil War, the South at last had to face defeat as the dream of a Confederate nation melted into the Lost Cause. Through an examination of memoirs, personal papers, and postwar Confederate rituals such as memorial day observances, monument unveilings, and veterans' reunions, Ghosts of the Confederacy probes into how white southerners adjusted to and interpreted their defeat and explores the cultural implications of a central event in American history. Foster argues that, contrary to southern folklore, southerners actually accepted their loss, rapidly embraced both reunion and a New South, and helped to foster sectional reconciliation and an emerging social order. He traces southerners' fascination with the Lost Cause--showing that it was rooted as much in social tensions resulting from rapid change as it was in the legacy of defeat--and demonstrates that the public celebration of the war helped to make the South a deferential and conservative society. Although the ghosts of the Confederacy still haunted the New South, Foster concludes that they did little to shape behavior in it--white southerners, in celebrating the war, ultimately trivialized its memory, reduced its cultural power, and failed to derive any special wisdom from defeat.
Description : Just as the rise of mechanized textile production marked the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in the United States, its demise signaled the onset of deindustrialization. Once considered an aberration in an otherwise unblemished record of economic progress, the decline of New England's textile industry in the decade following World War II has been mirrored throughout other industries in the nation's heartland. In this book, William F. Hartford examines that process from the perspective of union leaders who sought to save the textile industry while at the same time trying to improve conditions of work. He draws on the experiences of workers across New England but focuses on developments in three cities: Fall River, New Bedford, and Lawrence. Challenging the view of deindustrialization as an inevitable process of decline, Hartford shows how textile unionists attempted to establish a bargaining structure that balanced wages, workloads, and investment. He explores as well the divisions among both manufacturers and rank-and-filers that complicated these efforts.