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J A N U A R Y 2 0 0 8 77 sources for clues about how the community interacted with the hospital. Hospitals were rare in antebellum Georgia, and those that existed were commonly created in response to the latest epidemic. Locals, therefore, even in times of war, might have been reluctant to embrace a hospital whose patients might bring additional disease into their communities. Other Civil War hospitals in southwestern Virginia and north Georgia encountered opposition from fearful locals; the value of this study would have been enhanced had the author placed the Atlanta hospitals within the larger framework of Confederate hospitals. That criticism aside, Welsh’s painstaking research, clear prose, and attentive eye for detail ensures that this volume will be a welcome addition to the libraries of Civil War scholars and enthusiasts. KEITH S. HÉBERT Georgia Historic Preservation Division Creating Community: Life and Learning at Montgomery’s Black University. Edited by Karl E. Westhauser, Elaine M. Smith, and Jennifer A. Fremlin. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2005. xii, 180 pp. $29.95. ISBN 0-8173-1463-6. Creating Community makes a fine contribution to African American education historiography. This volume of essays takes a multi-focus examination of one historically black university, Alabama State University (ASU). The differing perspectives are presented in eleven essays contained in four sections—Alabama: Black-White Mix; Region-Wide: Seamless Fit; Non-Southern: What Difference?; and International: All Welcome. The book, as the title suggests, attempts to show how black universities directly and indirectly build and sustain communities. As the editors make clear in the introduction (a point the essays support), “the community described in this volume is a diverse one that includes blacks and whites, women and men, the native born and immigrants from around the world” (p. 1). ASU’s past is summarized in a broad overview in the introduction, which situates the university within the history of American education. It suggests that ASU is both an heir to that tradition and a contributor. The end of the Civil War not only ended the last vestiges of legal slavery but ushered in the promises and expectations of freedom. African Americans in Alabama, like blacks throughout the reconstructing South T H E A L A B A M A R E V I E W 78 of the late 1860s and 1870s, attempted to give meaning to their freedom in several ways. One such way was the effort to acquire literacy and education , and to establish schools. The institution that today is ASU and located in Montgomery, began in 1867 in Marion, Alabama, as Lincoln Normal School. From inception, its growth, challenges, prosperity, and neglect would mirror the larger and complicated story of education and race. Another part of the story is covered here as well: the competing visions of the role and scope of education held by African Americans themselves. Booker T. Washington’s attempt to extend the Tuskegee-Hampton education model touched ASU, complicating its development, as it did similar institutions. Washington’s goals, though, influenced rather than determined its development. Kathy Dunn Jackson’s essay, “You Can Go Home Again,” shows that “the college’s reach was broad, affecting not only those who attended school here or those who lived nearby” (p. 23). It provided educational opportunities, trained a professional class, and opened its campus facilities to Montgomery’s black community. Jackson’s account is echoed by Sunita George, a native of India who joined the faculty in 1999. She maintains that the legacy of building and fostering community still exists and is “reflected in the willingness to help and support others” (p. 149). The meaning, understanding, and creation of community that Jackson and George note are reflected in all the essays and are a unifying theme. For example, Virginia M. Jones, a white native of Birmingham, recounts her transformation from a racial innocent into someone interested in acquiring a greater understanding of racial and cultural diversity. ASU provided for her the best setting for her growth, nurturing “a passionate belief in the value of multicultralism and diversity” (p. 42). Frank E. Moorer’s essay is a most interesting one, exploring his experiences...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2166-9961
Print ISSN
0002-4341
Pages
pp. 77-79
Launched on MUSE
2012-07-11
Open Access
No
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