This week on Fieldstone Common, Marian Pierre-Louis interviews Carla L. Peterson, author of Black Gotham: A Family History of African Americans in Nineteenth-Century New York City.
Part detective tale, part social and cultural narrative, Black Gotham is Carla Peterson’s riveting account of her quest to reconstruct the lives of her nineteenth-century ancestors. As she shares their stories and those of their friends, neighbors, and business associates, she illuminates the greater history of African-American elites in New York City.
Carla L. Peterson
Black Gotham challenges many of the accepted “truths” about African-American history, including the assumption that the phrase “nineteenth-century black Americans” means enslaved people, that “New York state before the Civil War” refers to a place of freedom, and that a black elite did not exist until the twentieth century. Beginning her story in the 1820s, Peterson focuses on the pupils of the Mulberry Street School, the graduates of which went on to become eminent African-American leaders. She traces their political activities as well as their many achievements in trade, business, and the professions against the backdrop of the expansion of scientific racism, the trauma of the Civil War draft riots, and the rise of Jim Crow.
Told in a vivid, fast-paced style, Black Gotham is an important account of the rarely acknowledged achievements of nineteenth-century African Americans and brings to the forefront a vital yet forgotten part of American history and culture.
Carla L. Peterson is professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is the author of “Doers of the Word”: African-American Women Speakers and Writers in the North, 1830–1880.
Connecticut’s Fife & Drum Tradition with James Clark. Musician and historian James Clark is the first to detail the colorful history of this unique music. This engaging book leads the reader through the history of the individual instruments and tells the story of this classic folk tradition through anecdotes, biographies, photographs, and musical examples.
28 Feb. 2013 at 1pm EST
Down East Schooners and Shipmasters with Ingrid Grenon. Nothing is more iconic of Maine than the image of a majestic vessel—masts raised—gliding through the fog on the dark North Atlantic. In this collection, author Ingrid Grenon presents the most important and incredible stories from the decks of Down East’s schooners, revealing how these remarkable vessels and Down East Maine are tied together.
Stephen Puleo is a writer based in Massachusetts. You can learn more about him at his website and you can follow him on Facebook.
The book The Caning: The Assault that Drove America to Civil War, published by Westholme Publishing, is available for purchase from major books sellers online and off such as Amazon.com.
His other books include:
Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919
A City So Grand: The Rise of an American Metropolis, Boston 1850-1900
The Boston Italians: A Story of Pride, Perseverance and Paesani, from the Years of the Great Immigration to the Present Day
Due to Enemy Action The True World War II Story of the USS Eagle 56
The Caning occurred on May 22, 1856 when pro-slavery Congressman Preston Brooks attacked staunchly anti-slavery Senator Charles Sumner. The beating stopped just short of taking Sumner’s life. To learn more about Charles Sumner you can read his biography, Charles Sumner and the Coming of the Civil War by David Herbert Donald. You can learn more about Preston Brooks from his wikipedia page.
To see the Heirloom Registry entry — including photos — for the radio, visit www.heirloomregistry.com and enter registration number: SNTS-256-996-3497-2012.
Fieldstone Common’s sponsor is Houstory, makers of the Home History Book and the Heirloom Registry. Fieldstone Common listeners can take 15 % off their Heirloom Registry order by visiting the Heirloom Registry at www.heirloomregistry.com, and entering FIELDSTONE – in all caps – at checkout.
Fieldstone Common greatly appreciates the support of Houstory as a sponsor. Show your support for Fieldstone Common by visiting our sponsor’s site.
In order to win the second copy of The Caning all you need to do is sign up for the mailing list.
I will randomly select a member of the mailing list to receive the copy. (I will use a random number generator on the internet and then select the corresponding mailing list recipient in order of signup.)