African Americans of Jefferson County (Images of America) by Jefferson County Black History Preservation Society

By Jefferson County Black History Preservation Society


Jefferson County can proudly declare a great number of firsts in terms of African american citizens in nationwide history.

The raid to unfastened slaves that served as a catalyst for the Civil warfare used to be led by way of abolitionist John Brown in Harpers Ferry. the 1st guy wounded within the uprising was once Heyward Shepherd, a loose African American and a Jefferson County resident. Pres. Abraham Lincoln appointed Jefferson County local Martin Robison Delany because the first African American box officer of the Civil warfare. In 1906, the Niagara stream, forerunner to the nationwide organization for the development of coloured humans (NAACP), held its first assembly on American soil at the Storer collage campus. the 1st lady to turn into the trainer of a men's university basketball workforce was once additionally an African American from Jefferson County. also, the coloured Horse convey held in Charles city used to be the 1st of its variety for African Americans.

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They would ¶oat from job to job as the season dictated and as work became available. This pattern prevailed in the towns as well as the rural communities, powerfully disrupting not only the black labor force but the black family. Moreover, even when there was work, black laborers seemed to prefer the preindustrial rhythms, however un- 22 | “BORN IN A MIGHTY BAD LAND” pro¤table they were. In Appalachian coal mines, “the routine of factory work” characteristic of Northern manufacturing plants contrasted “with the ‘free lance’ nature of coal digging.

26 This stanza not only sounds natural and unforced, it has few rivals in the ballads for expressing the isolation, loneliness, and anonymity that come with crime and the jail time it brings. It explores what James Baldwin half a century later called “the graver questions of the self” in Nobody Knows My Name. Who am I, asks Baldwin, behind the mask of the “Negro” I am forced by whites to wear? Once in the court of the white judge, the “Coon-Can” narrator’s only identity is the mask the judge and his society force him to wear.

Thus, at least for these Journal pieces, Corrothers used a romping, playful style to correct what he takes to be an inaccurate image of blacks. For example, he attacks by implication the black elite, who rejected as shameful and disreputable the oral tradition of slaves and contemporary urban folk, by making Sandy a burlesque “doctor” of folklore. Collecting it is part of the club’s purpose, for “the club members are expected to learn all they can concerning cats, witches, ghosts, quaint Negro sayings and plantation stories and melodies, and to impart them in an original manner at the meetings of the club” (p.

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