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The Publications of the Southern Texts Society

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The Publications of the Southern Texts Society

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In Black and White

An Interpretation of the South

Lily Hardy Hammond Edited by Elna C. Green

“Our problem is not racial, but human and economic. . . . We hold the Negro racially responsible for conditions common to all races on his economic plane.” The writings of reformer Lily Hardy Hammond (1859-1925) are filled with such forthright criticisms of southern white attitudes toward African Americans--enough so that her stature as a southern progressive thinker would seem assured. Yet Hammond, who once stood at the intellectual center of the southern women's social gospel movement and was in her time the South's most prolific female writer on the “race question,” has been marginalized.

This volume reprints In Black and White, the most important of Hammond's ten books, along with a sampling of the dozens of articles she published. Elna C. Green's biographical introduction tells of Hammond's marriage to a prominent Methodist minister and educator. It also traces Hammond's career within the context of prevailing gender and racial attitudes in the Jim Crow South. Hammond, who had roots in Methodist home mission work, was also active in such secular and ecumenical organizations as the Southern Sociological Congress, the Commission on Interracial Cooperation, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Hammond worked alongside blacks to promote education, improve living conditions, and stop lynching. As a suffragist and temperance advocate, she urged the leaders of those largely white women's movements to partner with African Americans.

Historians of religion, social science, and race relations will welcome the reintroduction of this remarkable but virtually forgotten figure.

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John Bachman

Selected Writings on Science, Race, and Religion

Gene Waddell

John Bachman (1790–1874) was an internationally renowned naturalist and a prominent Lutheran minister. This is the first collection of his writings, containing selections from his three major books, his letters, and his articles on plants and animals, education, religion, agriculture, and the human species.

Bachman was the leading authority on North American mammals. He was responsible for the descriptions of the 147 mammal species included in Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America, a massive work produced in collaboration with John James Audubon. Bachman relied entirely on scientific evidence in his work and was exceptional among his fellow naturalists for studying the whole of natural history.

Bachman also relied on scientific evidence in his Doctrine of the Unity of the Human Race. He showed that human beings constitute a single species that developed as varieties equivalent to the varieties of domesticated animals. In this work, perhaps his most significant accomplishment, Bachman stood nearly alone in challenging the polygenetic views of Louis Agassiz and others that white and black people descended from different progenitors.

Bachman was also an important figure in the establishment of Lutheranism in the Southeast. He wrote the first American monograph on the doctrines of Martin Luther and the history of the Reformation. Bachman served for fifty-six years as minister of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Charleston, South Carolina, and was one of the founders of Newberry College.

 

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Mary Telfair to Mary Few

Selected Letters, 1802-1844

Mary Telfair Edited by Betty Wood

This volume gathers nearly half of some 300 letters written by Mary Telfair of Savannah to her best friend, Mary Few of New York. Telfair was born in 1790 to a wealthy, prominent, slaveholding Savannah family. Few, born in 1790 into equally affluent circumstances, moved with her family from Savannah to New York in 1799. Self-exiled because of their strong antislavery views, the Fews never returned to Georgia, yet they remained close to the Telfairs.

The close friendship between Telfair and Few ended only with their deaths in the 1870s. Regular travelers, they met on many occasions. Chiefly, however, they kept in touch through frequent correspondence (Few's letters to Telfair remain undiscovered, and may not have not survived). Wherever Telfair happened to be--in Savannah, the northern states, or Europe--she wrote to her friend at least two or three times a month.

Telfair's letters offer unique insights into the daily life of her family and the changes wrought by the deaths of so many of its members. The letters also reveal the shared interests and imperatives at the base of her various relationships with elite women, but especially with Mary Few, whom Telfair memorably described as her "Siamese Twin." The two women, neither of whom ever wed, nonetheless discussed the rights and obligations of marriage as well as their own state of "single blessedness." They also conversed about shared intellectual interests--literature, lecture topics, women's education--as well as the foibles of common acquaintances. Here is a fascinating, unfamiliar world as revealed in what editor Betty Wood calls "one of the most remarkable literary exchanges between women of high social rank in the early national and antebellum United States."

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Pioneering American Wine

Writings of Nicholas Herbemont, Master Viticulturist

Nicholas Herbemont Edited by David S. Shields

This volume collects the most important writings on viticulture by Nicholas Herbemont (1771-1839), who is widely considered the finest practicing winemaker of the early United States. Included are his two major treatises on viticulture, thirty-one other published pieces on vine growing and wine making, and essays that outline his agrarian philosophy. Over the course of his career, Herbemont cultivated more than three hundred varieties of grapes in a garden the size of a city block in Columbia, South Carolina, and in a vineyard at his plantation, Palmyra, just outside the city.

Born in France, Herbemont carefully tested the most widely held methods of growing, pruning, processing, and fermentation in use in Europe to see which proved effective in the southern environment. His treatise "Wine Making," first published in the American Farmer in 1833, became for a generation the most widely read and reliable American guide to the art of producing potable vintage.

David S. Shields, in his introductory essay, positions Herbemont not only as important to the history of viticulture in America but also as a notable proponent of agricultural reform in the South. Herbemont advocated such practices as crop rotation and soil replenishment and was an outspoken critic of slave-based cotton culture.

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Princes of Cotton

Four Diaries of Young Men in the South, 1848-1860

Edited by Stephen Berry

A rogue, a megalomaniac, a plodder, and a depressive: the men whose previously unpublished diaries are collected in this volume were four very different characters. But they had much in common too. All were from the Deep South. All were young, between seventeen and twenty-five. All had a connection to cotton and slaves. Most obviously, all were diarists, enduring night upon night of cramped hands and candle bugs to write out their lives.

Down the furrows of their fathers' farms, through the thickets of their local woods, past the familiar haunts of their youth, Harry Dixon, Henry Hughes, John Coleman, and Henry Craft arrive at manhood via journeys they narrate themselves. All would be swept into the Confederate Army, and one would die in its service. But if their manhood was tested in the war, it was formed in the years before, when they emerged from their swimming holes, sopping with boyhood, determined to become princes among men.

Few books exist about the inner lives of southern males, especially those in adolescence and early adulthood. Princes of Cotton begins to remedy this shortage. These diaries, along with Stephen Berry's introduction, address some of the central questions in the study of southern manhood: how masculine ideals in the Old South were constructed and maintained; how males of different ages and regions resisted, modified, or flouted those ideals; how those ideals could be expressed differently in public and private; and how the Civil War provoked a seismic shift in southern masculinity.

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Shared Histories

Transatlantic Letters between Virginia Dickinson Reynolds and Her Daughter, Virginia Potter, 1929-1966

Virginia Dickinson Reynolds and Virginia Potter Edited by Angela Potter

A mother writes to her faraway daughter: "I keep all your letters. Someday you might want to do something with them." Those words foretold Shared Histories, although neither woman would live to see the book. This is the first known published collection of letters to include correspondence between civilian family members on both sides of the Atlantic during World War II. Separated for most of their adult lives, Virginia Dickinson Reynolds and her daughter, Virginia Potter, wrote to each other for nearly forty years. This selection from their long exchange is filled with unguarded reflections on current events, fashion, food, travel, domestic life, leisure, and the upheaval of war. Readers will also encounter various prominent English people and members of the aristocracy, the American southern elite, and such familiar names as Martha Graham, Walt Disney, and Ellen Glasgow.

Both women were born in Richmond, Virginia, and raised in privileged circumstances. Virginia Dickinson Reynolds was the child of a Confederate Army officer and was also a distant cousin of poet Emily Dickinson. Virginia Potter traveled widely until she married an English Army officer and settled in his country. The women's intensely close bond shines through Shared Histories as, from time to time, do their class-conscious, Anglo-Saxon sensibilities. Sometimes poignant, sometimes bristling, always candid, these letters portray private worlds of tradition confronted with global change.

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