James H. Thomason Library

History 450 Course Guide: Freedom & Slavery in America Seminar
Reference Sources


On to Liberty,Theodor Kaufmann, 1867. 
Metropolitan Museum of Art
ArtStor Image Collection

  Dictionaries, Encyclopedias
  Historical Statistics
  Style Guides
Locating Books
  PASCAL Catalog
  WorldCat & I.L.L.
Locating Articles
  Journal & Reference Databases
  Historical Newspapers
  Journal Finder
  Key Journals
Web Sites
  Primary Sources-Full Text
  Slave Narratives
  Reconstruction Era
Get Help

denotes recommended resource

Reference Sources:    
Dictionaries & Encyclopedias   back to top

For background information and definitions refer to the following library reference works and online reference collections:

American Eras, Gale Research, 1997. 
Main Level, Reference: R 973.8 Am35A [8 vols]
Check index for specific topics during a specific time period. Vols. 1-6 include information on slavery. Included in U. S. History in Context database searches.

Chronology of World Slavery, ABC-CLIO, 1999.
Main Level, Reference: R 306.3 R618C

Dictionary of American History, Thomson Learning, 2003.
Main Level, Reference: R 973.03 D561D [10 vols]
An authoritative reference covering a wide range of topics in American history with illustrations and maps enhancing the text. Included in U. S. History in Context database searches.

Encyclopedia of African-American Culture and History, [via U.S. History in Context database] Macmillan Pub., 1996.

Also available in print:  Main Level, Reference: R 973.0496073 En19E2 [5 vols]
Covers the African-American experience from 1619 to the present day. Uses biographies, historical essays, and thematic pieces, to explore the cultural roots and current condition of the African-American community.

Encyclopedia of African and African-American Religions, Routledge, 2001.

Main Level, Reference: R 299.603 En19E

Use the index to find information on slave religion, Second Great Awakening, and more.

Encyclopedia of African American Society
[SAGE eReference], SAGE, 2005.
A reliable initial reference for learning basic facts and ideas about African American society and for guidance on where to obtain more information.

Encyclopedia of Black America, McGraw-Hill, 1981.
Main Level, Reference: R 973.0496073 En19E 
   Of particular note: See section titled  “Slavery in Selected States.”

  Encyclopedia of African American Society Bookcover

Encyclopedia of the American Civil War: A Political, Social, and Military History, ABC-CLIO, 2000.
Main Level, Reference: R 973.703 En19E [5 vols]
Entries that chart the war's strategic aims, analyze diplomatic and political maneuvering, describe key military actions, sketch important participants, assess developments in military science, and discuss the social and financial impact of the conflict, providing comprehensive treatment of subjects usually covered only in specialized monographs. Includes chronology, illustrations, maps, primary documents, bibliographies, and index.

Encyclopedia of Black Studies [SAGE eReference], SAGE, 2006.
A source for the most used ideas and concepts in the field of Black studies.

Encyclopedia of the United States in the Nineteenth Century [CREDO Reference]    Paul Finkelman, editor. Thomson Gale, c2007.
"Comprehensive treatment to cover all aspects of 19th century history: population, politics and government, economy and work, society and culture, religion, social problems and reform, everyday life, and foreign policy are explored in many A-to-Z articles. Complete with more than 400 illustrations and maps, this set includes an exhaustive year-by-year chronology, original documents, and tables."

Slavery and America (Gale Library of Daily Life series)  [GaleVirtual Reference Library]. Orville Vernon Burton, ed. Detroit: Gale, 2008. 

Historical and Cultural Atlas of African Americans, Macmillan, 1991.
Main Level, Reference: R 973.0496073 As13H

Macmillan Encyclopedia of World Slavery, Macmillan Reference, 1998.
Main Level, Reference: R 306.3 M228M [2 vols]

The Negro Almanac: A Reference Work on the African American, Gale Research, 1989.
Main Level, Reference: R 973.0496073 N312N


Oxford African American Studies Center



Core content from reference works - Africana, Encyclopedia of African American History, 1619-1895, Black Women in America, and African American National Biography.  The Center draws on other key resources from Oxford's reference program, including the Concise Oxford Companion to African American Literature and selected articles from other major reference titles. Numerous primary sources with specially written commentaries, images, and maps enhance this reference content.

New Collection!   U.S. History and Culture: Sharpe Online Reference [SOLR]

Search this collection of 9 eBooks from M. E. Sharpe Publishing and explore the broad range of events, people, movements, and political, social, economic, and cultural issues that have shaped the United States from earliest times to the present day. Includes web links, primary sources, teacher resources, as well as a searchable image gallery.



Biography   back to top


African American Lives, Oxford University Press, 2004. 
Main Level, Reference: R 920.009296 Af83A

American National Biography, Oxford University Press, 1998.
Main Level, Reference: R 920.073 Am35A [24 vols]
Portraits of more than 17,400 men and women whose lives have shaped the nation.

African American National Biography
[Oxford African American Studies Center], Oxford, 2006.
Included are slaves and abolitionists, writers, politicians, and business people, musicians and dancers, artists and athletes, victims of injustice and the lawyers, journalists, and civil rights leaders who gave them a voice.

Gale Biography in Context   [Gale]
Contains 600,000+ biographies covering more than 525,000 individuals. Includes biographical articles from reference books and periodicals as well as multimedia content.

Gale U.S. History in Context   [Gale] (formerly known as History Resource Center: US)

View a list of all biographies in this Reference Database using the new interface. Browse topics or search for specific content which includes scholarly articles as well as reference works, primary sources, and links to related topics.


Historical Statistics   back to top

Bicentennial Edition: Historical Statistics of the United States, Colonial Times to 1970 [U.S. Census Bureau]
A collection of hundreds of sources made available within a single source with referrals to data which are sources of greater detail. The annotations also define terms used in the tables and include essential qualifying statements. Choose PDF or Zip file.
Also available Main Level, Reference: R 317.3 Un3H [2 vols]

Historical Statistics of Black America. Gale Research, 1995.
Main Level, Reference: R 973.0496073 H629H [2 vols]  
Provides data on the condition, status and experiences of African Americans from the 18th century through 1975. Use indexes in volume 2: Subject and Index by Year.

Historical Statistics of the States of the United States: Two Centuries of the Census, 1790-1990. Greenwood Press, 1993.
Main Level, Reference:
R 317.3 H629H
An expanded and revised edition which supplements the preceeding publication by presenting state-level population, agriculture, and manufacturing data and city population data on a historical basis.

Historical Census Browser [University of Virginia Library]
Using data from the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), this site allows users to browse selected census data from 1790 to 1970 by state and county. Data from the early years (1790 to 1830) focuses solely on population characteristics, while data after those years include selected economic, manufacturing, and agricultural information.

Statistical Record of Black America, Gale Research, 1990.
Main Level, Reference: R 305.896073 St29S

Style Guides   back to top

Guidelines for Writing History Research Papers, Dr. Richard Heiser, History Dept.

Suggestions for Paper Writers, Dr. Anita Gustafson, History Dept.

Writing Center, Presbyterian College
Citation styles, writing guides, and scheduling an appointment with a tutor.


Locating Books  
THOMCAT   back to top


 Use THOMCAT , the online catalog, to locate books in Thomason Library. You can search by author, title, word, or subject.

  • Search for a person, as AUTHOR or SUBJECT, with last name, first name:              

Douglass, Frederick [as AUTHOR]

  Tubman, Harriet [as SUBJECT]  
  • SUBJECT searching requires use of Library of Congress subject headings. The terms below are examples of subject headings related to freedom and slavery:

Fugitive Slaves


Slavery--United States


Underground railroad

  African American abolitionists -- Biography  
  • Materials relevant to the study of slavery may also be found by specifying the era or dates, geographic area, or the material type in which you are interested:
  African Americans--History to 1863  
  Antislavery Movements--United States--History--19th century  
  Women abolitionists -- United States -- History -- 19th century  
  Freedmen--Southern States  
  Slaves--Emancipation--United States  

Slavery--South Carolina


Subject searching is an effective and precise method of searching the catalog, however, KEYWORD searching has benefits, also.

  • If you are unsure of the exact title or the correct subject heading to use, try a KEYWORD search using two or three of the most significant words from the title or subject you are trying to find. Place phrases in "quotation marks."

  • Connect words with AND, OR, NOT to focus your search.
  • Try truncation at the end of a word stem to retrieve singular, plural, and other variations of the word.  Use an asterisk (*) to truncate from 1 to 5 characters. Use a double asterisk (**) to include word endings with an unlimited number of characters.
KEYWORD Searching Tips


· Add * to the root of a keyword to truncate & expand
a term:
slave* = slave, slaves, slavery

· Use AND between keywords to narrow your search:
AND narrative*


· Use OR between keywords to expand your search then group keywords with parentheses:
(freedom OR emancipation) AND south


Try KEYWORD searching with THOMCAT,

PASCAL Catalog, & the library's journal databases


EBSCO eBook Collection   back to top




Search the familliar EBSCO platform for eBooks related to your topic!


From your search results you can view the Table of Contents with links to chapters of the book.

However, you may want to search the entire content of the book for specific keywords or phrases: once you've opened the full-text of a book, you can click on the magnifying glass TOOL located on the right column and enter keywords or phrases.

Example of an EBSCO eBook in THOMCAT:

Slavery and public history: the tough stuff of American memory [electronic resource], University of North Carolina Press, 2009.


PASCAL Catalog   back to top


PASCAL Catalog

If you need books in addition to those found at Thomason Library, try your search here for books in other academic libraries in SC. Through PASCAL Delivers, you can order books online for delivery within 3-4 working days. This service for current PC students, faculty, and staff is a project of PASCAL- Partnership Among SC Academic Libraries. Borrowers will be notified by e-mail when requested items arrive at Thomason Library. Click here for searching and ordering tips.

Worldcat & Interlibrary Loan   back to top



A catalog of books and materials at libraries worldwide. Try searching here to find ALL books available on a topic. Materials available at Thomason Library are highlighted and others can be borrowed through ILL or searched in PASCALCAT.

Interlibrary Loan

ILL is available to PC students, faculty and staff in order to share resources between libraries. Check link for instructions.

Locating Articles:    
Journal Databases back to top

The following journal databases are available to PC students, faculty, and staff from on- and off-campus locations.  Search using terms dealing with your topic.

A searchable archive of full-text journals covering all disciplines while providing more full-text access in the library's electronic databases

 Project MUSE Basic Undergraduate Collection
Current and recent volumes of 111 core journals in the humanities and social sciences

Academic Search Premier [EBSCOhost]
Approximately 550 of the more than 8000 periodicals indexed are history-related journals and magazines, with full-text articles for many of them.

Reference Databases       back to top

Oxford African American Studies Center

A comprehensive online collection focusing on the lives and events which have shaped African American and African history and culture from Oxford Press.
Reference titles in this collection include:

African American National Biography
(much content available, but still under development)
Encyclopedia of African American History, 1619-1895

Encyclopedia of African American History, 1896 to the Present
Black Women in America
, Second Edition
Concise Oxford Companion to African American Literature

Gale U.S. History in Context  [Gale]
Events, issues and current information in U.S. history from journal articles, reference books, and primary source materials.  Relevant reference sources in this collection include:


American Eras [8 vols], Gale Research, 1997-98. Also available Main Level, Reference: R973.8 Am35A
American Journey Online: The Civil War, Primary Source Microfilm, 1999.
American Journey Online: The African American Experience, Primary Source Microfilm, 1999.
Civil Rights in America: 1500 to the Present, Gale Research, 1998.
Civil Rights the United States [2 vols], Macmillan Reference USA, 2000.
Encyclopedia of African-American Culture and History [5 vols], Macmillan, 1996. Also available Main Level, Reference: R 973.0496073 En19E2
Encyclopedia of the Confederacy [4 vols], Simon & Schuster, 1993. Also available Main Level, Reference: R 973.713 En19E
Encyclopedia of the United States in the Nineteenth Century [3 vols], Scribner, 2001.
History in Dispute, Vol. 13: Slavery in the Western Hemisphere Circa 1500-1888, St. James Press, 2003.

Historical Newspaper Databases    back to top

America’s Historical Newspapers, 1690-1876 [NewsBank Archive of Americana]
A searchable database with issues from over 700 historical American newspapers from 23 states and the District of Columbia focusing largely on the 18th and early 19th centuries. Select specific titles or search publications by state.

The Atlanta Constitution Archive [ProQuest Historical Newspapers]
Full-text & full-image articles from 1868-1945.

The New York Times Archive [ProQuest Historical Newspapers]
Full-text & full-image of NYT articles with coverage from 1851 up to three years ago.

Journal Finder   back to top

Journal Finder provides access to PC's electronic and print journals,

magazines, and newspapers in one convenient location.

Your search results in PC article databases contain many direct links to article full text.

If no direct links are shown, follow the "Check Journal Finder" link to determine if full-text is available (follow steps 1-6 below).


Example of an article citation:


Chitra Ragavan, Terror on the streets,

U.S. News & World Report 137.21 [vol.issue]
(Dec 13, 2004): p 20.



  • Note the journal title & date OR volume / issue you need before following the Journal Finder link.
  • The default search is Journals by Title in Full Text. Type the title of the journal or magazine in the box below (example: U.S. News & World Report).
  • You may need to select your title from the results. Click on the title you seek.
  • Results for your title include up to three categories: Full Text Resources in your library (in print), Full Text Resources Online, and Indexing Only (not full text).
  • Note the dates available for that journal. If "Full Text Online" is not available, look under "Full Text in your Library" - we may have what you need in print.
  • Choose, year and issue OR volume and issue, then look through contents of that issue for the article you need. Articles are usually listed in page number order and are available in HTML or PDF format.

Thomason Library subscribes to thousands of eJournals, however, text is not available for every journal. Some journal publishers embargo or withhold current issues so that subscribers will continue print subscriptions.


Key Journals   back to top

Click link below to view availability of journal in Journal Finder:

American Historical Review

American Quarterly

The Journal of African American History (continues The Journal of Negro History)

The Journal of American History

The Journal of Southern History

New England Quarterly

North Carolina Historical Review

South Carolina Historical Magazine
Lower level, periodical collection: 1952–current issue in print only

William and Mary Quarterly


Web Sites  
General Sources   back to top


The African American: A Journey from Slavery to Freedom [B. Davis Schwartz Memorial Library, Long Island University]
Provides excellent overview of slavery in the U.S.  Includes a timeline, with hyperlinked entries.

Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture [College of Charleston]
This site presents the Avery Center's archival and museum collections of primary documents relating to the history and culture of African Americans in Charleston and South Carolina. The site also offers a schedule of center programs, including conferences, lectures, and exhibits.

Digital Library on American Slavery  [Electronic Resources and Information Technologies, University Libraries, UNC-Greensboro]

The Digital Library on American Slavery offers data on race and slavery extracted from eighteenth and nineteenth-century documents and processed over a period of eighteen years. The Digital Library contains detailed information on about 150,000 individuals, including slaves, free people of color, and whites. These data have been painstakingly extracted from 2,975 legislative petitions and 14,512 county court petitions, and from a wide range of related documents, including wills, inventories, deeds, bills of sale, depositions, court proceedings, amended petitions, among others. Buried in these documents are the names and other data on roughly 80,000 individual slaves, 8,000 free people of color, and 62,000 whites, both slave owners and non-slave owners. (from web site). NOTE: This resource provides detailed abstracts only--not full-text of documents.

Exploring Amistad  [The Museum of America and the Sea]
Mystic Seaport’s site features information about the Amistad Revolt of 1839-1842. Includes a history of the Revolt, a timeline, and access to excerpts from court hearings, testimony, the popular media, government papers, and diaries (including those of John Quincy Adams). Provides information about American politics and political culture in the 19th century and the people who were part of the Amistad Revolt and the trial.

Sonja Haynes Stone Center Library for Black Culture and History  [UNC Libraries]
Over 900 sites are available in the searchable guide which is also browseable by subjects. The topics covered range from the underground railroad to hip hop music.

Slave Movement During the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries [Data & Information Services Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison]
This site provides access to the raw data and documentation which contains information on the following slave trade topics from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries: records of slave ship movement between Africa and the Americas, slave ships of eighteenth century France, slave trade to Rio de Janeiro, Virginia slave trade in the eighteenth century, English slave trade (House of Lords Survey), Angola slave trade in the eighteenth century, internal slave trade to Rio de Janeiro, slave trade to Havana, Cuba, Nantes slave trade in the eighteenth century, and slave trade to Jamaica. For information about the data sets, read the study descriptions for each set.

Slavery and the Making of America  [PBS]
Site originally created in support of the 2005 PBS series Slavery and the Making of America.

Slavery in America  [Dr. Chris Lewis, University of Colorado]
Categories include African-American Views on Slavery, The Geography of Slavery, 1600-1860, The Debate Over Slavery in America, and The American Civil War.

USA History: Slavery in the United States  [John Simkin, Spartacus Educational]
Categories include: Slave Accounts; The Slave System; Slave Life; Events & Issues; Campaigners Against Slavery; Political Organizations; British Campaigners.

Primary Source Materials - Full Text  

back to top

African-American Mosaic:  A Library of Congress Resource Guide for the Study of Black History & Culture
[Library of Congress]
Online resource guide/exhibit covering only four areas --Colonization, Abolition, Migrations, and the WPA, illustrating the depth, breadth, and richness of the Library's black history collections.

African-American Newspapers and Periodicals: Freedom's Journal
[Wisconsin Historical Society]
Freedom's Journal, the first African-American owned and operated newspaper published in the United States, was published weekly in New York City from 1827 to 1829. John B. Russworm edited the journal alone between March 16, 1827 and March 28, 1829. Later,Samuel Cornish served as co-editor  provided international, national, and regional information on current events and contained editorials declaiming slavery, lynching, and other injustices. The Journal also published biographies of prominent African-Americans and listings of births, deaths, and marriages in the African-American New York community. Freedom's Journal circulated in 11 states, the District of Columbia, Haiti, Europe, and Canada.


American Abolitionism[Prof. John R. McKivigan, Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis]  Categories include: Abolition, Slavery, Geography, Biography, Documents, Bibliography, Societies.  “Documents” section includes slave narratives, government documents, newspapers & magazines, pamphlets, speeches, correspondence, and organizational documents.

The Atlantic Slave Trade and Slave Life in the Americas: A Visual Record [Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and by the Digital Media Lab at the University of Virginia]
This site provides a collection of images related to American slave trade and slave societies. The images were compiled from a variety of sources and are comprised primarily of visual documents dating to the period of slavery.

From Slavery to Freedom: The African-American Pamphlet Collection, 1822-1909 [American Memory Project, Library of Congress]
Presents 396 pamphlets from the Rare Book and Special Collections Division, published from 1822 through 1909, by African-American authors and others who wrote about slavery, African colonization, Emancipation, Reconstruction, and related topics. The materials range from personal accounts and public orations to organizational reports and legislative speeches

The Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition: Online Documents  [The MacMillan Center, Yale University]
Contains over 200 individual items, including speeches, letters, cartoons and graphics, interviews, and articles. The documents are organized by author, date, subject, and document type. Includes category “History by State,” for resources by geographic areas.

Freedmen’s Bureau Online  [Christine's Genealogy]
Established in March, 1865,The Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands  supervised all relief & educational activities relating to refugees and freedmen, including issuing rations, clothing, & medicine. The Bureau also assumed custody of confiscated lands or property in the former Confederate States, border states, District of Columbia, and Indian Territory.  Records include “Records Relating to Murders and Outrages,” “Records Relating to Freedmen’s Labor,”  and “Marriage Records “

Samuel J. May Antislavery Collection [Cornell University Library]
In 1870, the University’s first President, Andrew Dickson White, acquired the complete library of his friend Samuel J. May, an abolitionist minister from Syracuse, New York. Numbering over 10,000 titles, May's pamphlets and leaflets document the anti-slavery struggle at the local, regional, and national levels  Much of the May Anti-Slavery Collection was considered ephemeral or fugitive, and today many of these pamphlets are scarce. Sermons, position papers, offprints, local Anti-Slavery Society newsletters, poetry anthologies, freedmen's testimonies, broadsides, and Anti-Slavery Fair keepsakes all document the social and political implications of the abolitionist movement. 

Word of Cornell’s acquisition spread among prominent abolitionists, many of whom responded to the call to contribute their personal papers and documents to the Cornell Library. In 1874 the abolitionists William Lloyd Garrison, Wendell Phillips, and Gerrit Smith, wrote, signed, and circulated an appeal to their friends and supporters in America and Great Britain, urging that it was of "great importance that the literature of the Anti-Slavery movement...be preserved and handed down, that the purposes and the spirit, the methods and the aims of the Abolitionists should be clearly known and understood by future generations." The effort was successful, bringing in further scarce and original manuscripts and publications, allowing the Cornell Library to develop an Anti-Slavery collection that is unique for its depth and coverage.

White supplemented May’s collection with an extensive Civil War collection of his own. Housed in the Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections in the Carl A. Kroch Library, both collections form part of Cornell's vast holdings documenting ante-bellum and Civil War America.

ALSO OF NOTE: This web site includes an online exhibit, “I Will Be Heard: Abolitionism in America,” which provides an excellent overview of the abolitionist movement.

Slavery and Abolition in the U.S.: Select Publications of the 1800s

Slavery and Abolition in the US: Select Publications of the 1800s is a digital collection of books and pamphlets that reflect the varying opinions and beliefs expressed on the slavery issue throughout the nineteenth century.  The works in this collection reflect arguments on both sides of the slavery debate and include first person narratives, legal proceedings and decisions, anti-slavery tracts, religious sermons, and secondary works. 

The materials presented in Slavery and Abolition in the US were gathered from the Archives and Special Collections Departments of both the Millersville University Library and the Dickinson College Library.

Slaves and the Courts, 1740-1860 [American Memory Project, Library of Congress]
Contains just over a hundred pamphlets and books (published between 1772 and 1889) concerning the difficult and troubling experiences of African and African-American slaves in the American colonies and the United States. The documents, most from the Law Library and the Rare Book and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress, comprise an assortment of trials and cases, reports, arguments, accounts, examinations of cases and decisions, proceedings, journals, a letter, and other works of historical importance. Of the cases presented here, most took place in America and a few in Great Britain. Among the voices heard are those of some of the defendants and plaintiffs themselves as well as those of abolitionists, presidents, politicians, slave owners, fugitive and free territory slaves, lawyers and judges, and justices of the U.S. Supreme Court. Significant names include John Quincy Adams, Roger B. Taney, John C. Calhoun, Salmon P. Chase, Dred Scott, William H. Seward, Prudence Crandall, Theodore Parker, Jonathan Walker, Daniel Drayton, Castner Hanway, Francis Scott Key, William L. Garrison, Wendell Phillips, Denmark Vesey, and John Brown.

Lysander Spooner's Works [Randy E Barnett, Georgetown University Law Center]
The Unconstitutionality of Slavery  Text of document by Lysander Spooner, a 19th century lawyer, abolitionist, and legal theorist, published in 1845, (rev.1860?).
Scroll to bottom of table of contents page to find link to Chapter 1.

TransAtlantic Slave Trade Databases [Emory University, Harvard University, National Endowment for the Humanities]

Information on almost 35,000 slaving voyages offering researchers and scholars an opportunity to

rediscover info on one of the largest forced movements of people in world history. Search the Voyages database by choosing variables [date, slaves embarked, disembarked, ship, captian, etc.] or view prepared statistics, timelines, maps. Custom graphs display in line, bar, or pie chart formats.


Slave Narratives   back to top

Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1938  [American Memory Project, Library of Congress]                      

   This online collection contains more than 2,300 first-person accounts of slavery and 500 black-and-white photographs of former slaves. These narratives were collected in the 1930s as part of the Federal Writers' Project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and assembled and microfilmed in 1941 as the seventeen-volume Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States from Interviews with Former Slaves.

North American Slave Narratives [Documenting the American South, UNC-Chapel Hill] 
Includes full-text of books and articles that document the individual and collective story of African Americans struggling for freedom and human rights in the eighteenth, nineteenth, and early twentieth centuries. This collection includes all the existing autobiographical narratives of fugitive and former slaves published as broadsides, pamphlets, or books in English up to 1920. Also included are many of the biographies of fugitive and former slaves and some significant fictionalized slave narratives published in English before 1920.

Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War [Virginia Center for Digital History, UVA]
The Valley Project details life in two American communities, one Northern and one Southern, from the time of John Brown’s raid through the era of Reconstruction. In this digital archive you may explore thousands of original letters and diaries, newspapers and speeches, census and church records, left by men and women in Augusta County, Virginia, and Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Giving voice to hundreds of individual people, the Valley Project tells forgotten stories of life during the era of the Civil War.

Reconstruction Era   back to top

America’s Reconstruction: People and Politics After the Civil War [University of Houston]
Noteworthy sections include  A New Birth of Freedom: Reconstruction During the Civil War. and The Meaning of Freedom.  Contents of the latter section include: ”Black and White Responses to the End of Slavery,” “From Slave Labor to Free Labor,”  “Rights and Power: The Politics of Reconstruction,” “The Ending of Reconstruction,” and  “Epilogue: The Unfinished Revolution.”

Reconstruction: The Second Civil War [PBS]
This site serves as a companion to the PBS series THE AMERICAN EXPERIENCE on the reconstruction period in America. The site's features include a map detailing post-war developments in diverse regions of the country, an examination of African American participation in government. Contents include: Forty Acres and a Mule, Plantations in Ruins, Black Legislators, Northerners in the South, Access to Learning, Slave to Sharecropper, the Negro Question, In God We Trust, White Men Unite, and State by State.

Timelines   back to top

Statutes of the United States Concerning Slavery : Chronological [The Avalon Project, Yale Law School]

A Visual Timeline of Reconstruction: 1863-1877  [University of Houston]
Page from “America’s Reconstruction: People and Politics After the Civil War” website.

Slavery and the Making of America: Time and Place  [PBS]
Move cursor over dates to see key events; click on date to see more events for that date.

Reconstruction Timeline [HarpWeek]
Toward Racial Equality:Harper’s Weekly Reports on Black America, 1857-1874.

U.S. National Timeline Kentucky’s Underground Railroad [Kentucky Educational Television]

African-American World. Timeline: Early Days and Slavery (1400s-1865) [PBS]

Get Help   back to top
Stop by the
Reference Desk

Teresa Inman 833-8313
Dan Lee 833-8437


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