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Reconstruction and the African American Struggle for Equality in the South

The first black U.S. senator and first black House members were elected by Southern states during Reconstruction.
Library of Congress
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The first black U.S. senator and first black House members were elected by Southern states during Reconstruction.

Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., has said, "Reconstruction is one of the most important and consequential chapters in American history. It is also among the most overlooked, misunderstood and misrepresented." 

For an overview of this fraught era in American history, Dr. Walter Edgar is joined by Dr. J. Brent Morris, Director of the University of South Carolina at Beaufort's Institute for the Study of the Reconstruction Era, for a discussion of Reconstruction and its aftermath, beginning with the hopeful moment of  Civil War's end and Emancipation in 1865, and carrying through to 1915, when the nation was fully entrenched in Jim Crow segregation.

- Originally broadcast 04/05/19 -

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.