"Provide[s] the reader with a panoramic view of the complexities of emancipation. . . . Key documents provide new insights into the mind and mood of the formerly enslaved regarding their new status. . . . A major new contribution to serious scholarship in the several related fields of Civil War, Reconstruction, and emancipation."
"[A] magnificent collection."
-Journal of Southern History
"One of the great editorial achievements of modern scholarship."
-Journal of Peasant Studies
"One cannot imagine scholars dealing with Reconstruction nationally, or the post-bellum history of any Southern state, without close attention to this work."
This volume definitely lives up to the very high standards set by its predecessors. The editors tackle a significant, complex set of issues, explicating them in a lucid, well-argued fashion and displaying a thorough command of the existing and voluminous relevant secondary literature. The quality of both the history and the writing here is impressive.--Eric Foner, Columbia University
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