Cover

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Title page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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p. vii

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Introduction

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pp. 1-6

In 1886, civic booster and newspaper editor Henry W. Grady became one of the most successful popularizers of what he and others called a “New South.” Grady wanted to hasten the South’s rebirth. The specific locale for his call to arms was post–Civil War Atlanta. Destroyed by war, in two decades the city had rebuilt itself and became a leading...

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ONE: A Troublesome Thing: Invasion

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pp. 7-32

During a clear winter day, late on the afternoon of January 3, 1861, residents of Atlanta, Georgia, experienced an unusual event: a ten-second tremor, probably a small earthquake. Seismic activity in northern Georgia was rare; local residents feared a dark augur. “Who will account for it in this latitude?” asked the Atlanta Daily Intelligencer . “...

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TWO: Ocean of Ruins: Destruction and Rebirth

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pp. 33-60

Sherman’s conquest of Atlanta occupies a conspicuous place in the popular and scholarly understanding of the Civil War. Narratives of the Atlanta Campaign have influenced American ideas of the ways in which warfare affects civilians and have figured in the construction of both white and African American memories of the Civil War and of the southern economic rejuvenation that followed...

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THREE: A Forgetfulness of the Past: Rebuilding the Racial Order

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pp. 61-85

In the summer of 1865, Atlanta offered profoundly contrasting scenes. Felix Salm-Salm, brigadier general in the 68th New York Infantry, had commanded the city’s military post for several months. A Prussian nobleman and officer who had served as a Union cavalry officer, Salm-Salm volunteered in 1861, rising to the rank of...

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FOUR: Every Contrivance of Cruelty: Violence and White Supremacy in the New South

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pp. 86-110

On March 31, 1868, in a spectacular act of Reconstruction-era political terror, a group of about thirty masked white men assassinated George W. Ashburn, a white Republican leader in Columbus, Georgia. The killing of Ashburn, a Unionist who became a Republican during Reconstruction, laid bare the realities of white supremacy in the aftermath of the Civil War. His murder, and the controversial efforts to...

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FIVE: We Are Rising: Schooling the City

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pp. 111-135

In the fall of 1868, the commissioner of the Freedmen’s Bureau, O. O. Howard, visited Atlanta. During the Civil War, Howard had risen to the rank of major general, and, as commander of the Army of Tennessee, played a leading role in the Atlanta Campaign. Visiting the American Missionary Association’s Storrs School, Howard addressed black parents and students. “What shall I tell the children in the North about...

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SIX: Wheel within a Wheel: Competing Visions

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pp. 136-168

In late July 1878, a newspaper reporter observed the anniversary of the Battle of Atlanta, an unsuccessful Confederate assault against Union forces besieging the city fourteen years earlier. A monument marked where Union general James B. McPherson had fallen; not far from that spot, Confederate general William H. T. Walker died on the same day. The anniversary commemorated losses on both sides; surveying...

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SEVEN: The New South in Crisis

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pp. 169-189

On September 22, 1906, Atlanta erupted in an unprecedented racial cataclysm that paralyzed the city for four days and, according to one assessment, “alarmed the entire country and awakened in the South a new sense of the dangers which threatened it.” Reacting to lurid accounts in the Atlanta tabloid press about an alleged epidemic...

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Epilogue: The Propaganda of History

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pp. 190-200

Writing in 1922, Atlanta historian John R. Hornady offered evidence of the power that memory of the Civil War still held. Like many others, he believed that the city exemplified the modernizing South, but felt also that the war had left a lasting imprint. A lifelong resident of Atlanta, Hornady grew up among material reminders...

Notes

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pp. 201-230

Bibliography

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pp. 231-242

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Acknowledgments

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pp. 243-244

I have incurred a number of debts which can never be repaid but should be fully acknowledged. I have relied on the assistance of numerous librarians and archivists, including the staff at the Atlanta History Center; Okezie Amalaha at the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History; Andrea...

Index

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pp. 245-251