Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A 'Stampede' for Freedom

Since I spend a great deal of time sharing various Kentucky Civil War stories here on Random Thoughts, I thought I'd share a great piece written by Dr. Aaron Astor of Maryville College (Tennessee), which was written for the New York Times and their "Disunion" series. It is titled "A 'Stampede' for Freedom," and tells the intriguing story of Kentucky's African American enlistments in the Union army in the the spring of 1864, a story I have referenced often in past posts.

You may remember a couple of years back that I highly recommended Dr. Astor's book, Rebels on the Border: Civil War, Emancipation and the Reconstruction of Kentucky and Missouri. If you have not yet read Rebels on the Border, find a copy, you will not be disappointed.

Along with being an excellent writer, Dr. Astor is a great speaker as well. Last summer he assisted in the National Endowment for Humanities Landmarks of American History and Culture Grant that was hosted by the Kentucky Historical Society, which examined Kentucky and the border states in the Civil War. His ability to make a sometimes confusing and contentious topic like Reconstruction understandable to an audience is a true talent.

Dr. Astor's Disunion piece will surely bring additional national interest to Kentucky's often overlooked emancipation story and inspire those both inside and outside of the state to learn more.

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