The Children of Lincoln: White Paternalism and the Limits of Black Opportunity in Minnesota, 1860-1876


Product Details

University of Minnesota Press
Publish Date
6.2 X 9.5 X 1.6 inches | 0.02 pounds

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About the Author

William D. Green is professor of history at Augsburg University and author of Degrees of Freedom: The Origins of Civil Rights in Minnesota, 1865-1912 (winner of the Hognander Minnesota History Award) and A Peculiar Imbalance: The Rise and Fall of Racial Equality in Minnesota, 1837-1869, both published by Minnesota. He is vice president of the Minnesota Historical Society.


"Beautifully written and deeply researched, The Children of Lincoln provides intimate portraits of four white Republicans in Minnesota after the Civil War. Having established in his previous books that African Americans were more deeply rooted and influential in the state's history than previously recognized, William D. Green demonstrates here that Minnesotans also played key roles in debates over racial equality that resonated far beyond state boundaries. He helps us understand not only the nation's retreat from equality in the late nineteenth century but also the persistence of racial disparities in Minnesota and across the United States today."--William P. Jones, author of The March on Washington: Jobs, Freedom, and the Forgotten History of Civil Rights

"William D. Green has done an excellent job of reconstructing the individual lives and decisions made by four Lincoln Republicans who soon after 1865 washed their hands of postemancipation issues, one explicitly asserting, 'We have done our part.' He traces how these four (and by analogy most northern white Americans) disengaged from the struggle for equality and sent African Americans into a 'new era of darkness, ' undermining the very freedoms that the Civil War promised."--Annette Atkins, author of Creating Minnesota: A History from the Inside Out

"Green brings to light a little-known but critical chapter in Minnesota's history through four of these 'children of Lincoln' in Minnesota."--Pioneer Press

"Extensively researched and well written, Children of Lincoln is an excellent state study in the broader context of post-Civil War history."--CHOICE

"Green's work should become required reading for those interested in the contradictory positions taken by white Republicans who championed black suffrage and equal citizenship rights but eventually abandoned black citizens to navigate by themselves continuing racial hostility and inequalities in both the North and South."--The Annals of Iowa