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“A Stampman hanging on a Tree”

This is the 250th anniversary of Boston’s first public demonstration against the Stamp Act, which set off a wave of similar protests in the other ports of British North America. One of the best sources on that event is a letter from Boston merchant John Avery (1739-1806) to his brother-in-law John Collins (1717-1795) of Newport, Rhode Island. Show More Summary

Jefferson Davis Goes, While Robert E. Lee and Albert Sidney Johnston Stay

The debate at the University of Texas at Austin over the presence on campus of monuments to Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Albert Sidney…

New to the Civil War Memory Library, 08/13

All of these books – except the new biography of Dana, which is quite good – are connected to my ongoing research project on Silas…

The Flight of the Stampmen in the Boston Gazette

In preparation for the next two days of Stamp Act sestercentennial events in Boston, I looked up the issue of the Boston Gazette for Monday, 12 Aug 1765.That was the last issue published before effigies appeared on the big South End elm. Show More Summary

Walter Johnson Offers ‘A Better Way to Think About Slavery’

For the past few days I’ve been reading about the expansion of slavery into the southwestern states during the 1830s and 40s. Silas Chandler was…

Boston’s Middle Passage Port Ceremony, 23 Aug.

The campaign against the Stamp Act wasn’t the only fight over liberty in British North America in 1765, just the most popular. Hundreds of thousands of people in the colonies had lost their freedom to the practice of chattel slavery, fed by the transatlantic slave trade. Show More Summary

The Passing of a Pioneer in History Blogging

I was very sad to hear this morning of the passing of Ralph Luker. Ralph taught American history at a number of schools and was…

A placemarker in my considerations of the American Colonization Society

For those who have continued to follow my ramblings through old annual reports of the American Colonization Society, I’ve got a little more to follow. I’ve skipped around a bit between the 1820s and the 1850s, and looking at a few other resources at my disposal, I found something worthwhile from the 1850s regarding the […]

Why Did a Video about the Civil War and Slavery Go Viral?

Yesterday I posted a video of a West Point history professor briefly discussing the central role that slavery played in the coming of the Civil…

President Washington in Providence, 15 Aug.

There are a couple of Revolutionary-era events happening in New England in the next several days that I want to acknowledge before the Stamp Act protest sestercentennial is officially upon us. In 1789, President George Washington visited...Show More Summary

The United States Army’s “Finest Hour”

This is a decidedly unremarkable educational video on the American Civil War until the 5:05 mark. At that point, Colonel Ty Seidule, Professor of History…

Å Riotous Walk with Boston by Foot, 15 Aug.

On Saturday, 15 August, Boston By Foot is offering a special two-hour walking tour that focuses on the Stamp Act and the town’s riotous responses to it. The “Taxes, Riots and Revolution” tour starts at 10:30 A.M. at the entrance to the Park Street T Station on the northeast corner of Boston Common. Show More Summary

The Confederacy Was Not a Con Job

Over the weekend the Richmond Times-Dispatch published an editorial on the current debate about Confederate iconography by Frank Hyman. It’s an interesting editorial in that…

What to Wear to a Riot in 1765

Ten years can be a significant time in the changing fashions of clothes. Ten years ago, there was still hope that Croc shoes would be a passing fad. Teen-aged boys had not yet received the mass text message telling them to stop having haircuts for several months. Show More Summary

Opposing another form of ignorance? Finding value in the antebellum South

When glancing over my bookshelves last night, I pulled a book which I ordered about a year ago, yet had not yet taken time to read. The reason I purchased it was because the author spent time in the book, providing an argument about Southern antebellum authors who went against the grain of many other […]

Stamp Act Riot and More in Newport, 29 Aug.

The Newport Historical Society has its own Stamp Act sestercentennial commemoration this month, scheduled for the afternoon of Saturday, 29 August. Starting at 1:00 P.M., there will be a big public reenactment in downtown Newport. The...Show More Summary

On the Death of Anthony Hervey and the Myth of Black Confederates

I am very pleased to to share my debut article for The Daily Beast, which went live earlier this morning. For most of you the…

Do Confederate Flags Belong in the Classroom?

This morning I received the following email: I’m sure you’ll have an opinion on this. As you probably know, public schools are notorious for decorating…

American Colonization Society: Growth of Auxiliaries, 1823-1828

Though I’m still gathering data, I figured I would go ahead and give something to consider, at least up to a point. As readers may recall, I presented some raw numbers on life members (as of 1847), and the places that these people represented doesn’t even begin to show how many places had active auxiliaries. […]

The Stamp Act on the South Shore

Protests against Parliament’s new Stamp Act spread outside Boston in the late summer of 1765, and commemorations of its 250th anniversary will take place outside Boston, too. Shortly after Samuel Adams led the Boston town meeting toShow More Summary

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