Cities of the Dead
Contesting the Memory of the Civil War in the South, 1865-1914
Publication Year: 2004
Published by: The University of North Carolina Press
Series: Civil War America
Title Page, Copyright
Roughly a decade ago, I was researching a related project on national identity when I came across a newspaper item about an Emancipation Day celebration. The year was 1866. Former Confederates in Hampton, Virginia, were angered by the event, which featured black soldiers marching in the streets....
This book examines the political implications of commemorating the Civil War, specifically Emancipation Day and Memorial Day in the former Confederate states from 1865 to 1915. These rituals originated and matured in an era when street processions, parades, and various public displays...
CHAPTER 1. The Commemorative Landscape before the Civil War
When a writer for North American Review looked at the commemorative calendar of the United States in 1857, he bemoaned the lack of a unified holiday. ‘‘It is an exceptional trait in our nationality,’’ he noted, ‘‘that its sentiment finds no annual occasion when the hearts of the people thrill...
CHAPTER 2. Establishing Freedom’s Celebrations, 1865–1869
In the spring of 1866, the Civil War had been over for a year, but the wounds had by no means healed. That much became clear as the black residents of Hampton, Virginia, gathered on the first anniversary of freedom. They marched on April 9—not the date of the Emancipation Proclamation...
CHAPTER 3. Waging Politics through Decoration Days, 1866–1869
For former Confederates, a number of shadows darkened the first ceremonies in honor of their war dead. First was the knowledge that those being mourned had fallen in an unsuccessful effort. White southerners had to accept the sacrifice of nearly one-quarter of their seventeen- to fifty-year...
CHAPTER 4. The Politics of Manhood and Womanhood, 1865–1870
When viewing Confederate Decoration Days during Reconstruction, northern commentators often reached the conclusion that their former male enemies hid behind the skirts of women. Periodicals suggested that the events served as thinly disguised political rallies for the Democratic...
CHAPTER 5. The Era of Mixed Feelings
Ten years after the Civil War, people throughout the country noticed a changing mood between the sections. In 1875 Congressman William D. Kelley of Pennsylvania returned from a six-week tour of the South convinced that the North had little cause to fear its former enemies. At a...
CHAPTER 6. The Rise and Decline of Political Self-Help, 1883–1900
On May 29, 1890, Richmond residents unveiled the statue of Robert E. Lee that still sits on Monument Avenue. With first light the city bustled with activity, accompanied by martial music. The crowd was estimated at 100,000, with the procession of veterans, according to one observer, taking...
CHAPTER 7. Arlington Sectional Cemetery
In 1914 Woodrow Wilson committed a political blunder over commemorating the dead. The southern-born president declined an invitation by the gar to speak at Union Memorial Day in Arlington Cemetery. Although a disappointment to the veterans, Wilson’s decision came as no...
Page Count: 264
Publication Year: 2004
Series Title: Civil War America
Series Editor Byline: Series Editors: Peter S. Carmichael, Gettysburg College; Gary W. Gallagher, University of Virginia; Caroline E. Janney, Purdue University; and Aaron Sheehan-Dean, West Virginia University See more Books in this Series
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