OVERRIDE

Redemption

The Last Battle of the Civil War

Nicholas Lemann

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

"An arresting piece of popular history." --Sean Wilentz, The New York Times Book Review
 
Nicholas Lemann opens this extraordinary book with a riveting account of the horrific events of Easter 1873 in Colfax, Louisiana, where a white militia of Confederate veterans-turned-vigilantes attacked the black community there and massacred hundreds of people in a gruesome killing spree. This began an insurgency that changed the course of American history: for the next few years white Southern Democrats waged a campaign of political terrorism aiming to overturn the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and challenge President Grant's support for the emergent structures of black political power. Redemption is the first book to describe in uncompromising detail this organized racial violence, which reached its apogee in Mississippi in 1875.
 
"An arresting piece of popular history." --Sean Wilentz, The New York Times Book Review Nicholas Lemann opens this extraordinary book with a riveting account of the horrific events of Easter 1873 in Colfax, Louisiana, where a white militia of Confederate veterans-turned-vigilantes attacked the black community there and massacred hundreds of people in a gruesome killing spree. This began an insurgency that changed the course of American history: for the next few years white Southern Democrats waged a campaign of political terrorism aiming to overturn the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and challenge President Grant's support for the emergent structures of black political power. Redemption is the first book to describe in uncompromising detail this organized racial violence, which reached its apogee in Mississippi in 1875. 

BOOK EXCERPTS

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1

ADELBERT AND BLANCHE

One function that politics serves is to embody, through parties, the sometimes startlingly different ways in which people can perceive the same situation. To a Republican during the Reconstruction era, Adelbert Ames would have seemed to be a very promising young American. He was the son of a sea captain, born in the port town of Rockland, Maine, in 1835; his family had been in America since the seventeenth century and, by the time Adelbert was a young man, had acquired enough influence to get him an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West

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REVIEWS

Praise for Redemption

Praise for REDEMPTION:

"[A] brilliant new book . . . Redemption is accessible and important, and we cannot really understand race or political power in modern America without understanding what happened in the South a decade after Appomattox." --Jon Meacham, Washington Monthly
 
"Lemann . . . has told this sad, heartbreaking story with passion and authority. He does not tar all whites with the brush of racism or violence, and he does not excuse Reconstruction its excesses and mistakes." --Jonathan Yardley, Washington Post Book World
 
"Lemann performs a sterling service in excavating these hidden ruins, and Redemption is a superb, supple work of popular narrative history backed up by sound archival evidence." --Alexander Rose, The New York Observer
 
Praise for THE BIG TEST

"A dazzling writer . . . Mr. Lemann makes this tale immensely readable." --Dan Seligman, The Wall Street Journal

"A swaggering good tale peopled with colorful characters, from the testmakers who created the SAT in the 1920's to the students who used it 40 years later to launch themselves as Lemann's Mandarins." --Gerald W. Bracey, The Washington Post
Praise for REDEMPTION:

"[A] brilliant new book . . . Redemption is accessible and important, and we cannot really understand race or political power in modern America without understanding what happened in the South a decade after Appomattox." --Jon Meacham, Washington Monthly
 
"Lemann . . . has told this sad, heartbreaking story with passion and authority. He does not tar all whites with the brush of racism or violence, and he does not excuse Reconstruction its excesses and mistakes." --Jonathan Yardley, Washington Post Book World
 
"Lemann performs a sterling service in excavating these hidden ruins, and Redemption is a superb, supple work of popular narrative history backed up by sound archival evidence." --Alexander Rose, The New York Observer
 
Praise for THE BIG TEST

"A dazzling writer . . . Mr. Lemann makes this tale immensely readable." --Dan Seligman, The Wall Street Journal

"A swaggering good tale peopled with colorful characters, from the testmakers who created the SAT in the 1920's to the students who used it 40 years later to launch themselves as Lemann's Mandarins." --Gerald W. Bracey, The Washington Post

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Nicholas Lemann

  • Nicholas Lemann, dean of the School of Journalism at Columbia University, is author of The Big Test (FSG, 1999) and the prizewinning The Promised Land. He lives with his family in Pelham, New York.
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    Redemption

    The Last Battle of the Civil War

    Nicholas Lemann

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    FROM THE PUBLISHER

    Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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