Reconstruction to Jim Crow
After the Civil War and end of slavery, Americans had to decide how to integrate freed African Americans. Learn about the lives of African Americans from Reconstruction to the end of the prejudiced Jim Crow era.
Learning to Read
Francis Ellen Watkins Harper
An African American child in 1872 describes what it was like to be discouraged from learning how to read.
If We Must Die
A Harlem Renaissance poet discusses facing death and other obstacles with courage and dignity.
Booker T. Washington vs. W.E.B. Du Bois
Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois
These two excerpts capture the ideological debate about black social mobility after the Civil War.
A Child Of Slavery Who Taught A Generation
Karen Grigsby Bates
The life and success of Anna Julia Haywood Cooper, an American author, educator, prominent scholar, and one of the first black women to earn a doctoral degree in United States history.
The Story of Ida B. Wells
Ida Bell Wells was an African-American journalist, editor, suffragist, sociologist, and an early leader in the Civil Rights Movement.
This informational text details the controversial policies of Reconstruction after the American Civil War.
From Slaves to Sharecroppers
This collection of three primary texts from the Reconstruction Era reveal the difficult decisions that freed slaves faced as sharecroppers.
Excerpt from Southern Horrors: Lynch Laws in All Its Phases
Ida B. Wells
This excerpt discusses the injustice and horrors of Southern lynch laws, focusing especially on the violence enacted against African Americans following the Civil War and Reconstruction Era.
The Scottsboro Boys
This text discusses the trial in which nine black boys were wrongfully accused and convicted for a crime they didn’t commit.
The Harlem Renaissance
In this informational text, Jessica McBirney discusses the development of the Harlem Renaissance as an artistic movement.