‘Die by Their Guns First’: D.C. Slaves, the War of 1812, and Historical Memory in the Wake of the Civil War

Delivered at the annual Southern Labor Studies Association Conference in Washington, D.C. in March 2015 In many ways, the former slave Paul Jennings’ A Colored Man’s Reminiscences on James Madison is highly unusual. Published in 1865 by President James Madison’s former “body servant,” Reminiscences covers a scant two-dozen pages and has received even more scant … Continue reading ‘Die by Their Guns First’: D.C. Slaves, the War of 1812, and Historical Memory in the Wake of the Civil War

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‘To Save the Soul of America’: Justifying the Vietnam War in History, Society, and Memory

Delivered at the annual Graduate Student History Conference at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana in February, 2013 The Vietnam War has long been disputed terrain in American history and memory. As early as the late 1960s, scholars and activists like Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. and Frances Fitzgerald were arguing that the war was an … Continue reading ‘To Save the Soul of America’: Justifying the Vietnam War in History, Society, and Memory