Academic journal article The Arkansas Historical Quarterly

Book and Media Notes

Academic journal article The Arkansas Historical Quarterly

Book and Media Notes

Article excerpt

Most historians trying to understand the rise of Jim Crow in Arkansas and the rest of the late nineteenth-century South have focused their attention on developments in individual counties or statehouses. In his recent Legislating Racism: The Billion Dollar Congress and the Birth of Jim Crow, Thomas Adams Upchurch suggests that such approaches neglect the important role that Congress played in the creation of this system of racial segregation. Focusing on the Fifty-first Congress (1889-1891), Upchurch analyzes the debates about African-American rights, noting the roles of Arkansas senators James K. Jones and James Berry and the investigations into irregularities in two Arkansas congressional contests. He concludes that congressional actions fostered a climate that allowed Jim Crow to prevail and exacerbated prejudice against Native Americans and Chinese immigrants. The book is available in cloth ($40.00) from the University Press of Kentucky, 663 South Limestone Street, Lexington, KY 40508-4008; (800) 839-6855; www.kentuckypress.com.

In 1863, fourteen-year-old Harry "Sam" Young left New York City for the West, hoping to find the sort of adventure that he had read about in dime novels. Some fifty years later, Young penned his memoir, recounting a twelve-year odyssey that took him from Fort Smith to the Pacific Ocean to the Black Hills gold rush. AHQ readers will probably be most interested in chapters three through five which detail Young's doings as a railroad hand along the Arkansas-Indian Territory border. …

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