Bruce A. Glasrud's African Americans on the Great Plains: An Anthology PDF
By Bruce A. Glasrud
Till lately, histories of the yankee West gave little proof of the presence—let on my own importance—of African american citizens within the unfolding of the western frontier. There could have been a point out of Estevan, slavery, or the Dred Scott choice, however the wealthy and sundry adventure of African american citizens at the nice Plains went mostly unnoted. This publication, the 1st of its style, offers that severe lacking bankruptcy in American history. Originally released over the span of twenty-five years in nice Plains Quarterly, the essays accrued the following describe the half African americans performed within the frontier military and as homesteaders, neighborhood developers, and activists. The authors deal with race relatives, discrimination, and violence. They inform of the fight for civil rights and opposed to Jim Crow, they usually research African American cultural progress and contributions in addition to monetary and political points of black lifestyles at the nice Plains. From contributors resembling “Pap” Singleton, period Bell Thompson, Aaron Douglas, and Alphonso Trent; to incidents at fortress Hays, Brownsville, and Topeka; to defining moments in executive, schooling, and the arts—this assortment deals the 1st entire review of the black adventure at the Plains.
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Additional info for African Americans on the Great Plains: An Anthology
Tired of incessant attacks on the army’s men and property, white oflcers willingly sided with black troops in using Butler as an example, frustrating any designation of the violence as purely racial. A Hays citizen summarized the situation: “There has been for some time much unpleasant feeling existing between the authorities of Hays City and Ft. ”43 Indeed, the bad blood between fort and town transcended race, remecting a larger pattern of antipathy characterizing civilian-military relations. In April, during the Nineteenth Kansas Cavalry’s station at Fort Hays, white troops congregated nightly in Hays City, engaging in brawls and shootings with locals.
To prevent further hostility, Ovenshine withdrew the patrol and returned Hays City to the jurisdiction of civil law, the ineflciency of which only contributed to Cropper’s eventual acquittal. 33 The killings of Allen and Doyle commenced years of hostility between the fort and town. While Cropper awaited trial, minor conmicts between black soldiers and white townsfolk continued through 1868, the same year Hays City came under control of an organized vigilante group. The vigilance committee visited perceived troublemakers and ordered them to leave town.
The same group cohesion that discouraged black desertions encouraged a search for vengeance when a soldier was wronged or insulted. 28 For buffalo soldiers, however, the drive to retaliate appeared especially strong. ” Their refusal to tolerate abuse certainly deserves a measure of 34 leiker admiration, but their actions ultimately intensiled white prejudice, creating a cycle of hatred that resembled an ongoing blood feud. The First Violent Encounter The lrst violent encounter, initiated by townspeople, illustrates how oflcers generally sided with their men.
African Americans on the Great Plains: An Anthology by Bruce A. Glasrud