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The African American Odyssey showcases African American collections from the Library of Congress. These historical era(s) are best represented in the collection, although they may not be all-encompassing. The African American Odyssey presents five Library of Congress collections related to African American history, along with an in-depth Special Presentation based on a Library exhibition, The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship.
Slaves and the Courts, 1740-1860, a collection of 100-plus pamphlets and books that document the experiences of African and African Americans in the colonial and U.S. From Slavery to Freedom: The African-American Pamphlet Collection, 1824-1909, presenting 397 pamphlets by African Americans. The Frederick Douglass Papers at the Library of Congress, containing 7,400 letters, speeches, articles, financial and legal papers, and scrapbooks from the great African American abolitionist and his contemporaries, along with a draft of his highly regarded autobiography.
Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writersa€™ Project, 1936-1938, including 2,300 oral histories from and 500 pictures of former slaves. Baseball and Jackie Robinson, a collection of manuscripts, photographs, ephemera, and books on baseball history dating from 1860, focuses on the color line in baseball and Jackie Robinsona€™s role in breaking that line. This Collection Connection centers on the Special Presentation entitled African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship. The Special Presentation, which can be searched by Keyword, is based on a special Library exhibition of 240 books, maps, musical scores, plays, films, photographs, and more.
After some time spent in trading at Goree, Captain Gould and Company in this aforesaid Brigantine Hope went to Gambia, and then returned to Goree and took in between thirty and forty slaves, and then went to Senegal and took in two or three more slaves, but did not go over the Bar. According to the text in the Special Presentation, what event was being investigated when William Priest provided testimony?
Find information in the Special Presentation section on slavery about other slave revolts on board ships.
While many African Americans in the nationa€™s early years were enslaved, others lived as free men and women in both the North and South.
Many free African Americans tried to help those in slavery escape, while working to end the institution of slavery.
In the revised Preface in 1878, Still says “the necessity of the times requires this testimony”? Still mentions in the Preface that the heroism of fugitives inspired the abolitionists in the antebellum period. Still points out that the history of the founders of the United States was widely known 100 years after the country was established.
Religious sermons and writings were only one way abolitionists tried to convince others of the worth of their cause. The Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 was one of the most controversial pieces of the Compromise of 1850.
In what way were the people referred to by the term contraband of war useful to the Union forces?
How did photographer and artist Alfred Waud respond to observing the escaped slaves in Union Army camps?
African American soldiers did not receive equal treatment in the Union Army: they were paid less, sometimes they did not get paid for extended periods, and they were not allowed to attain high ranks. The image above shows the famous illustrator and political cartoonist Thomas Nasta€™s vision of the future of the African Americans freed through the Emancipation Proclamation.
Does the introduction to the Special Presentation section on Reconstruction support or refute Nasta€™s view? What do you see as the major problems facing the nation as a whole and African Americans in particular at the end of the Civil War? In January 1867, the Commissioner of the Freedmena€™s Bureau made a report to Congress on the status of affairs in the Southern states. Read the report from one of the Southern states, making a list of all the problems mentioned. Many emancipated African Americans did choose to stay in the South, while others moved North and yet others headed for the West.
How did organizers like Benjamin “Pap” Singleton convince African Americans to become Exodusters? What did the writers mean by “Each teacher is expected to go to the field in the missionary spirit”? Teachers were instructed to correspond with the individuals, churches, or communities supporting them. To what values did the Union Commission appeal in asking Pennsylvanians to raise money to support teachers?
With the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment, which guaranteed all male citizens the right to vote, African Americans became active in Southern politics.
All was not negative, however, as the introduction to the Special Presentation section on The Booker T.
Washington became famous nationally after giving a speech at the opening of the Atlanta Exposition in 1895. As we have proved our loyalty to you in the past, by nursing your children, watching by the sick bed of your mothers and fathers, and often following them with tear dimmed eyes to their graves, as in the future in our humble way, we shall stand by you with a devotion that no foreigner can approach, ready to lay down our lives, if need be, in defense of yours, interlacing our industrial, commercial, civil and religious life with yours in a way that shall make the interests of both races one. Why do you think Washington made the case for African American loyalty to white Southerners?
African American women were also at the forefront of debates about the best approach to help black Americans attain full citizenship.
What could you infer from the number of lynching victims who were taken from police custody? The Anti-Lynching Committee was a committee of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, one of the civil rights organizations founded during the post-Reconstruction period.
The experiences of African American soldiers in World War I and upon their return caused civil rights organizations like the NAACP to increase their efforts for racial justice. Briefly stated, the Negroes did their full share in the great struggle to make the world safe for democracy. A summary of what the Negro wants may be stated: He wants justice in the courts substituted for lynching, the privilege of serving on juries, the right to vote, and the right to hold office, like other citizens. What do you think Scott meant by a “keener and more sharply defined consciousness”? The NAACP had started, almost since its inception, asking the courts to overturn discriminatory laws. In the 1920s, Harlem, a section of New York City in which many African Americans lived, became a center of cultural activity.
The African American artists and intellectuals active in this period explored new ways to express the experiences of black people in the United States. The collapse of the economy in 1929 and into the 1930s created hard times across the United States. With the Nazis in power in Germany and the Berlin Olympics of 1936 looming, NAACP leader Walter White wrote a letter to the great African American athlete Jesse Owens, urging him not to compete in the Games.
Why did White think participation of African American athletes in the Berlin Olympics would “do irreparable harm”?
If you had advised Jesse Owens prior to the Olympics, would you have urged him to participate or to stay home?
Pressure from civil rights groups and other black organizations convinced the military to provide training for African American pilots. Why do you think the mere threat of a march on Washington caused President Roosevelt to issue an executive order banning discrimination in employment in defense industries and the government? Why would flight training for African American pilots have had both symbolic and practical importance? Once again, when African American soldiers returned from war, they faced discrimination and violence.
What was the artist saying about the role of the police in the violence against African American? In the twenty years following the end of World War II, African Americans worked tirelessly, often side by side with white Americans, to gain equal rights.
Using information from the Civil Rights Era section of the Special Presentation, complete the chart, filling in as many different actions taken by civil rights activists as you can.
The scholars who put together the Special Presentation, The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship, organized the historical information into sections that could be considered periods.
What is the common element in most of the periodsa€”important events, cultural trends, decades, or prominent persons who were influential at the time? Creating periods is an arbitrary process, shaped by the interests and values of the scholars doing the periodization. Historical maps are valuable sources that allow users to relate historical information to geographic information. Statistical Atlas of the United States Based on the Results of the Eleventh Census Plate 11.
The Special Presentation, The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship features a map showing the distribution of the African American population in 1890. What changes do you see in the distribution of the African American population from 1870 to 1880? What advantages do these historical maps offer in studying changes in population distribution among African Americans in the Reconstruction period?
Many people living in the United States in the 1800s made an important decision to oppose slavery. When you have completed the two lists, construct an argument for abolition, using the reasons you have listed and your own ideas. Romare Bearden was a twentieth-century African American artist who worked in a variety of media but is best known for his collages, which he began making during the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Collages are works of art created by putting together varied objects to create a new image. The Special Presentation, The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship includes two of Beardena€™s collages.
Many historic events take place out of the spotlight, unobserved by artists, photographers, writers, or reporters. The Special Presentation, The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship, includes a painting by David Gilmore Blythe, in which he imagines how President Abraham Lincoln looked as he wrote the Emancipation Proclamation.


How has this painting changed or stimulated your thinking about this “unobserved historic moment”?
Satire is an art form that is, by definition, socially conscious; in satire, human vices, abuses, or frailties are exposed through ridicule, derision, irony, or other methods, often with the intent of sparking change for the better.
Study Harringtona€™s cartoon featured in the Special Presentation, The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship, (be sure to look at the entire image, not just the detail shown in the Special Presentation). The abolitionist movementa€”the effort to end slavery in the United Statesa€”used many different kinds of writing to persuade people of the rightness of their cause.
One abolitionist book featured in African American Odyssey is a childrena€™s book titled The Child's Anti-Slavery Book: Containing a Few Words about American Slave Children.
She showed him her wrists where they had been worn by the irons, and her back scarred by the whip, and she told him of cruelties that we may not repeat here. Which do you think would be most effective in changing childrena€™s minds about slaverya€”the introduction or the stories? Find an example of childrena€™s literature about a social issue in the twenty-first century. The African American Odyssey says that “Although Hughes was quite critical of Booker T. Throughout history, music has played a part in inspiring and uniting people involved in social movements.
How does the text on the record jacket convey the idea that this is socially conscious music?
Imagine that you are a record producer in the 1960s, producing a record by an African American artist.
School is one of the few times when they can get together with their friends and they use every unscheduled moment to socialize - passing time, when the teacher's back is turned, lunch, bathroom breaks, etc. Their value is about the kinds of informal social learning that is required for maturation - understanding your community, learning the communicate with others, working through status games, building and maintaining friendships, working through personal values, etc. Yet, what's odd about today's youth culture is that we've systematically taken away the opportunities for socialization. Pooh Bear: I partly disagree with Big Bird because the things written on the mans shirt are not all useless problems for America, they are average problems for the world.
The women says "What about Darfur?" I think that the author was trying to say that American people are only caring about themselves instead of Darfur, not that they are caring about stupid things instead of Darfur.
I think that the author is trying to say that most Americans think that their problems are more important and few like the woman care about real problems like the genocide in Darfur. Horse Freak:  I also agree with billy, why should we be worrying about our problems when there are helpless people in Darfur who are dying every day!!
Highlight the strand of conversation from our Voicethread conversation that was the most interesting or motivating to you.
This handout contains basic information on the kinds of comments that can be added to a Voicethread presentation. This handout was created for use with Ferriter's Cultural Photograph project, shown in the sample Voicethread presentations section above. This handout was created to introduce Ferriter's Welcome to Our World project, shown in the sample Voicethread presentations section above. See how one group of eighth grade students wrestled with issues related to the Holocaust and Hitler's Youth by visiting this ongoing Voicethread presentation. Like any new skill, students need to get regular feedback in order to become stronger participants in asynchronous conversations. Tip: To turn text into a link, highlight the text, then click on a page or file from the list above.
The exhibition tells the story of the African American experience through nine chronological periods. The exhibition details strategies used to secure the vote, recognizes outstanding black leaders, and documents the contributions of black sports figures, soldiers, artists, actors, writers, and others in the fight against segregation and discrimination. The pamphlets cover such topics as slavery, colonization, emancipation, Reconstruction, and more. The material, collected during the Great Depression, provides varying recollections of slavery and of individualsa€™ experiences in the years following the Civil War. Each of the collections within The African American Odyssey has its own Collection Connection.
It traces the experiences of African Americans through nine chronological periods, beginning with slavery and ending with the Civil Rights era. Read the context about resistance aboard the Hope and then examine this excerpt from the document describing the testimony of a witness to events on the ship. Given this event and the circumstances described in the excerpt above, how would you describe the atmosphere on the slave ship named Hope? Read the Special Presentation section on slavery and compile a chart showing other forms of resistance. Make a list of things you know or could deduce from your historical knowledge about the lives of free African Americans in the antebellum period.
The Underground Railroad is the well-known network of routes and hiding places used to help enslaved people escape. How would information about slavery and the efforts of people to escape from and end slavery be helpful in that era? What evidence can you find in the Special Presentation (look in both the Free Blacks and Abolition sections) to support his claim?
One could infer that he believed the story of the Underground Railroad and the courageous people it helped should be equally well known.
That period saw the establishment of the free African American press, black-controlled newspapers like Freedoma€™s Journal and The North Star, the latter founded and run by the writer (and former slave) Frederick Douglass.
The lawa€™s authors wanted to force law enforcement officials in free states to return slaves who had managed to escape from the South. Fugitive African Americans Fording the Rappahannock River Rappahannock, Virginia, August 1862. According to the exhibit, by the end of the Civil War, one in eight Union soldiers was African American. Nonetheless, these soldiers were loyal to the Union cause, and many distinguished themselves in their service to the nation.
Read some other entries from the diary and develop a list of adjectives you would use to describe Fleetwooda€™s experience as a soldier in the Union Army. Examine the image closely and read the introduction to the section of the Special Presentation on Reconstruction and Its Aftermath. They were treated generally in a most cruel and, in many instances, a most barbarous manner by their former masters, who seemed to be doubly bitter because they could no longer hold them as slaves. What can you infer from the poster about some of the issues facing African Americans looking to leave the South? Since the slave states had forbidden slaves from becoming literate, most African Americans could not read or writea€”but they were highly motivated to learn. How do these values relate to the situation in which newly freed African Americans found themselves? From information in the Fruits of Reconstruction section of the Special Presentation, create a list of African Americans who served in government, either in elected or appointed positions, during Reconstruction. Washington (three-quarter length portrait, seated and facing slightly left, holding newspaper) ca.
In all things that are purely social we can be as separate as the fingers, yet one as the hand in all things essential to mutual progress. While Nannie Helen Burroughs and Mary Church Terrell, like DuBois and Washington, had different philosophies, both advocated for education and employment for African American women. The efforts of black servicemen were extensively documented in a 600-page history by Emmett J. Because of the prodigious outpouring of philosophy, literature, art, drama, and music produced in Harlem during that time, the era became known as the Harlem Renaissance. While some African Americans gained employment through President Roosevelta€™s New Deal, many others suffered tremendously during this period. How would knowing that Owens would win four gold medals in the Berlin games change your advice?
African Americans were much more vocal about the discrimination they experienced in the military than they had been during World War I. Although they trained at a segregated base, the renowned Tuskegee Airmen served with great honor during World War II. If you were to add events that have occurred since the 1970s to this presentation on the history of African Americans, what would you call the new period? For example, maps showing census data can make changes in the population more visible than a table presenting the same data.
Strong leaders, committed individuals, community organizations, government officials and agenciesa€”with motivations ranging from outrage to religious faith, belief in constitutional principles, practical political considerations, and commitment to social justicea€”all played a role in creating change. In 1956, historian Kenneth Stampp adopted the phrase as the title of his book challenging the previously prevailing view of slavery. Known as abolitionists, these peoplea€”black and white, male and female, northern and southerna€”used a variety of strategies to seek the end of slavery. Then choose a strategy for opposing slavery that you think would be effective and explain why you, as an abolitionist, would have employed this strategy. The move to collage also marked a move to creating socially conscious art; that is, art that comments on or prompts reflection on social problems. The objects may include almost anything that can be affixed to a canvas: photographs,quotations, newspaper articles, letters, legal documents, drawings, ticket stubs, flags, fabric, paper cut into particular shapes, origami creations, and much more. Consider not only the items used but also how they are arranged on the page and the colors used. Using items from the Special Presentation and the five digital collections that make up the African American Odyssey collection, as well as items you create, make a collage that conveys something about African Americansa€™ demand for full participation in American society during the selected era. This is particularly true of those moments that involve an individual making an important decision or writing a document that will mark a watershed moment in history. Study the painting carefully (be sure to look at the entire image and not just the detail shown in the Special Presentation; access the entire painting by clicking on the thumbnail). Some examples might be Frederick Douglassa€™s decision not to participate in John Browna€™s raid on Harpers Ferry, Ida B.


Throughout history, artistsa€”in visual arts, literature, music, and the performing artsa€”have used satire to point out problems in society and stimulate change.
Three of Lewisa€™s brothers and sisters and his parents have been sold to other owners, so only he and his little brother Ned remain together. She talked with him as if he were a man, and not a child; and as he listened his heart and mind seemed to reach forward, and he became almost a man in thought.
Despite great determination, Lewis is prevented from learning to read and slips into depression.
How might the style of a socially conscious work of childrena€™s literature be different today?
While he wrote novels, plays, short stories, essays, autobiographies, histories, and the words to more than one opera, he was best known as a poet. Washingtona€™s accommodationist philosophy, this poem also evinces his understanding of the circumstances under which Washington labored.” Do you find any evidence in the poem of Hughesa€™ critical view of Washington? Have you seen a CD jacket in todaya€™s market that makes clear the socially conscious nature of the music? In each situation, how is music useda€”for enjoyment, to set a mood, for worship, to inspire or unite people, other purposes? They are desperately craving an opportunity to connect with their friends; not surprisingly, their use of anything that enables socialization while at school is deeply desired. All too often we underestimate these processes because, traditionally, they have happened so naturally. So there kinda saying that the genocide in Darfur isn't a problem and that we don't need to help them. These may sound like dumb things to do, but that is what the average person has to usually think about.
Drama girl says "well we need these stuff to survive ( forgetting illegal nanny) so stuff this Darfur Genocide . To me were being selfish i know we have to worry about things like taxes, jobs and cars, but those are such small things compared to genocide!!
Should we complain less and help more just in case the problem is reverse and its happening in our country? This rubric is designed to help teachers and students rate participation in the asynchronous conversations that we have in class.
TrekEarth fosters this by allowing photographers to display their work grouped by regions in a supportive and orderly environment. Over 240 items document the courage and determination of blacks faced with adverse circumstances, who overcame immense odds to fully participate in all aspects of American society. How would you determine if other slave ships saw similar violence while at sea and in port? Do you think that the story of the Underground Railroad is as well known today as the story of the Founders of the United States? The Special Presentation includes one front page from Freedoma€™s Journal, and one from The North Star. Use examples from the Special Presentation or from the five collections making up African American Odyssey to support your answer. Outrages, such as whipping, typing up by the thumbs, and shooting, were of daily occurrences, and the force of troops in the State was totally inadequate to meet the demands made upon it for ferreting out and arresting the perpetrators of these outrages.
Also code what you believe to be the source of each problema€”the prior conditions under which African American lives, the current attitudes of people of both races, nature, or other causes. Teachers, both black and white, often worked in harsh conditions to help a majority of African Americans become literate. With no federal oversight, as white Southerners regained control of state legislatures, they passed discriminatory laws, known as Jim Crow laws, which took away many of the rights gained after the Civil War. African Americans continued to serve in the military and to seek out educational opportunities, they produced stellar work in the arts, and civil rights organizations were founded to continue the struggle for full citizenship. Washington was the founder of Alabamaa€™s Tuskegee Institute, an institution of higher learning based on Washingtona€™s philosophy of patience, industry, and thrift; his school emphasized vocational traininga€”preparation for jobs, including jobs as teachersa€”rather than a strictly academic experience. One of the leaders of the anti-lynching movement was an African American journalist, Ida B.Wells-Barnett. To some of the manifold implications which the query itself involves, however, some answers can already be made.
If, after having fulfilled the obligations of citizenship Negroes do not get these things, then indeed, they feel, will the war have been fought in vain. A period is a defined block of time; the years included in a period have something in common, but what that common factor is may vary.
Why do you think the scholars who planned the presentation separated these overlapping periods rather than combining them into one period?
In the case of socially conscious art, the artist often selects particular items because they symbolize some aspect of a social problem.
Think about what each item will convey, as well as how you will arrange them and what response the juxtaposition of various objects will elicit. How an artist imagines that moment, while it may be far from the literal truth, can challenge and invite the viewer to think about the event in a new way. Wells-Barnetta€™s decision to launch a campaign against lynching, Harry Trumana€™s decision to desegregate the military, or Jackie Robinsona€™s decision to become the first African American in major league baseball.
Pick one and write a brief review describing why you think the cartoon is effective and why it appeals to you. A year after being sold, his mother, unable to work because of mental problems brought on by the loss of her children, is allowed to visit her two young sons. He published his first poem in a national magazine at the age of 19 and continued writing until his death 46 years later.
Social network sites are popular because youth are trying to take back the right to be social, even if it has to happen in interstitial ways.
Or what about all of the families that got hit by hurricane Katrina?  Do you really think those people have it as good as we do? Consider circling the individual statements that best describe the efforts of the student that you are responsible for giving feedback to.
This is accomplished by an easy-to-use system which encourages people to critique each other's work. Also give your own assessment, based on evidence from the collection and any additional sources you can locate, of the potential of this strategy for achieving freedom in the short and long term. There is a strong desire on the part of this race of people to obtain the knowledge which was denied to them while in the bonds of slavery; their progress is very creditable to them, and their examinations would not be discreditable to a school of white children under the same circumstances. Write a paragraph summarizing the problems and issues facing the Southern states in the years following the Civil War.
Many African Americans went on to college at such institutions as Wilberforce University, an Ohio school established specifically to serve black students. Color lithograph with portraits of Blanche Kelso Bruce, Frederick Douglass, and Hiram Revels.
Washington believed African Americans needed to master the skills that would help them be successful in farming and other trades. Why might conditions at the time have necessitated collective (rather than individual) action?
For one thing, the war has brought to the American Negro a keener and more sharply defined consciousness, not only of his duties as a citizen, but of his rights and privileges as a citizen of the United States. Use photographs, charts, or illustrations from the Special Presentation or the five collections of The African American Odyssey to illustrate your essay. Some periods are based on important events (The Revolutionary War); others on cultural trends (The Roaring Twenties), a decade (the 1990s), or a prominent person of the time (Napoleon). Write a generalization about the causes of change in the Civil Rights Era based on your comparison. The artist also considers the visual impact of the items, their juxtapositions with one another, and their overall arrangement on the canvas.
In 1935, when he was in his mid-twenties, Harrington got a job as a cartoonist at the Amsterdam News, a New York newspaper aimed at an African American audience. At his new home, the governess agrees to teach him to read and eventually helps him to escape. Do you think socially conscious childrena€™s books are a good way to have an impact on social issues?
One of the innovations he pioneered was infusing his poetry with the rhythms of jazz and the blues. People in the US of A are trying to survive in the world themselves, and except for an occasional thought about world issues. Read the letter from the Pennsylvania Branch of the American Freedmana€™s Union Commission. Can you think of other historical examples when oppressed people have created organizations to work for change? The colored people of America performed to the utmost of their ability the duties which the war imposed upon all citizens, black and white alike. While Frederick Douglassa€™s autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, Written by Himself, and Harriet Beecher Stowea€™s novel Uncle Toma€™s Cabin were two of the most influential works, many other works also sought to turn the hearts and minds of Americans against slavery. While Lewis reaches Boston, where he lives as a free man for the remainder of his life, the governess serves three years in prison for her role in his escape. He had no control over his own person or actions, but he belonged soul and body to another man, who had power to control him in everything. The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee organized a group called the Freedom Singers to perform around the country, motivating people and raising money for SNCC.
These things sound pretty dumb, but you have to worry about these things in order for YOU to survive! How does going through this process of exercising your artistic imagination change your thinking about the decision?
Jazz composers such as Max Roach composed new musical works that explored themes of freedom and protest.



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