By Brenda Wineapple
Impressive in scope, Ecstatic Nation illuminates the most dramatic and momentous chapters in America's earlier, whilst the rustic dreamed monstrous, craved new lands and new freedom, and used to be bitterly divided over its nice ethical improper: slavery.
With a canvas of remarkable characters, comparable to P. T. Barnum, Walt Whitman, Frederick Douglass, and L. C. Q. Lamar, Ecstatic Nation brilliantly balances cultural and political heritage: It's a riveting account of the sectional clash that preceded the Civil warfare, and it astutely chronicles the advanced aftermath of that conflict and Reconstruction, together with the promise that ladies may proportion in a new definition of yankee citizenship. It takes us from photographic surveys of the Sierra Nevadas to the invention of gold within the South Dakota hills, and it signs the painful, exciting beginning of recent America.
An epic story by means of award-winning writer Brenda Wineapple, Ecstatic Nation lyrically and with precise originality captures the optimism, the disasters, and the tragic exuberance of a renewed Republic.
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Extra info for Ecstatic Nation: Confidence, Crisis, and Compromise, 1848-1877
Probably those have been the lads who might be charged with inciting slaves to flee, snapped the Boston papers. but that they had attempted to flee, and the courtroom wouldn't loose them. as an alternative, the fugitives have been marched throughout the streets of Washington and held in a pen until eventually a grey slave dealer from Baltimore named Slatter got here to city to buy a couple of them, asserting they might fetch reliable funds down South. a good looking younger girl might deliver much more funds, Horace Mann famous with disgust: a slave dealer “knew how he may transmute her charms into gold during the fires of sin. ” One such younger lady, Elizabeth Russell, killed herself en path to get away her destiny. the boys and girls whom Slatter left at the back of have been taken via the slave-traffickers, Bruin and Hill, of within reach Alexandria. This workforce incorporated six of the youngsters of Amelia and Paul Edmondson, 4 boys and women (Mary and Emily), who offered for $4,500. Held within the slave pens in Alexandria, correct around the Potomac from the nation’s capital, they have been finally packed up and shipped off to New Orleans. In her Key to Uncle Tom’s Cabin (Stowe was once attempting to stem Southern feedback of her ebook by means of authenticating its sources), Harriet Beecher Stowe advised what had occurred to the Edmondsons: how they have been clothed in blue pants and shirts, how the brothers’ mustaches were shaved, how their mouths have been pried open to examine their tooth, how that they had been staged, paraded, manhandled. one of many brothers was once by no means visible back; one other, luckier one was once freed with money from the grandson of the fur dealer John Jacob Astor. After yellow fever decimated a lot of latest Orleans, the 2 ultimate Edmondson brothers, Ephraim and John, and their sisters, Mary and Emily, have been hauled again to Virginia, the place their father desperately attempted to avoid wasting the women. urged via the hot York department of the Anti-Slavery Society to refer to the Reverend Henry Ward Beecher, Edmondson went to Beecher’s domestic in Brooklyn, long island, yet couldn't carry himself to tug the Beecher bell. The reverend discovered Edmondson crying at the slump and invited him inside of, and shortly the Edmondson sisters have been Beecher’s reason. He preached on the huge Broadway Tabernacle on behalf of the women, thundering and cajoling—and appalling—the viewers, while he sounded as if he have been an auctioneer bidding for the ladies’ freedom from flesh peddlers. “A thousand—fifteen hundred—two thousand—twenty-five hundred! Going, going! final name! long gone! ” Beecher’s church raised the money, and Mary and Emily have been freed earlier than being shipped again to New Orleans. Harriet Beecher Stowe and her brother, in a while, supported them via their years at Oberlin university. Horace Mann walked out of the home of Representatives to develop into the 1st president of the newly based Antioch university, which admitted women and men, black and white. He died of fever and overwork in 1859, years prior to the firing on fortress Sumter. He used to be sixty-three. His brother-in-law Hawthorne died in 1864, disgusted by way of the carnage of what he believed to be an ill-conceived struggle.