November 11, 2014 / by admin / American History / No Comments

Ecstatic Nation: Confidence, Crisis, and Compromise, 1848-1877

Ecstatic Nation: Confidence, Crisis, and Compromise, 1848-1877

Brenda Wineapple

Language: English

Pages: 623

ISBN: 0061234583

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Dazzling in scope, Ecstatic Nation illuminates one of the most dramatic and momentous chapters in America's past, when the country dreamed big, craved new lands and new freedom, and was bitterly divided over its great moral wrong: slavery.
With a canvas of extraordinary characters, such as P. T. Barnum, Walt Whitman, Frederick Douglass, and L. C. Q. Lamar, Ecstatic Nation brilliantly balances cultural and political history: It's a riveting account of the sectional conflict that preceded the Civil War, and it astutely chronicles the complex aftermath of that war and Reconstruction, including the promise that women would share in a new  definition of American citizenship. It takes us from photographic surveys of the Sierra Nevadas to the discovery of gold in the South Dakota hills, and it signals the painful, thrilling birth of modern America.

An epic tale by award-winning author Brenda Wineapple, Ecstatic Nation lyrically and with true originality captures the optimism, the failures, and the tragic exuberance of a renewed Republic.

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buttons of his vest were polished. He stood over six feet tall on small feet. He didn’t know the difference between whiskey and brandy, he didn’t use tobacco, he didn’t eat much. He hated whistling, he hated dirt, he hated disorder. He liked to curse but never told a smutty story. No one wanted to see him angry. There were tales about how he had plunged his bowie knife into an army insubordinate, wiped off the blood, and then casually walked away as the man fell to the ground. He was born a

Carpenter, Sword and Olive Branch: Oliver Otis Howard (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1964), 24–25. 395 “a man of pure purposes”: “The Bureau Afloat,” The Independent, December 7, 1865, 5. 395 “too much Northern management”: McFeely, Yankee Stepfather, 60. 396 “This is a country”: Quoted in Eric McKitrick, Andrew Johnson and Reconstruction (New York: Oxford University Press, 1988), 184. 397 “They are doing all”: Quoted in William A. Dobak, Freedom by the Sword: The U.S. Colored

Federalism.” Civil War History 55 (December 2009): 469–98. Shepley, George F. “Incidents of the Capture of Richmond.” The Atlantic Monthly 46 (July 1880): 18–28. Sheridan, Philip H. Personal Memoirs of P. H. Sheridan. 2 vols. New York: Charles L. Webster, 1888. Sherman, John. John Sherman’s Recollections of Forty Years in the House, Senate, and Cabinet: An Autobiography. 2 vols. Chicago: Werner Company, 1895. Sherman, William T. Memoirs of General William T. Sherman. Ed. Charles Royster. New

called the textile industry soulless. But there was no legislation proposed, much less passed, that protected the safety of a worker. And why should there be? “Mankind has not yet learned,” rationalized a writer for Scientific American, “that laws are not omnipotent.” In 1862, though no criminal charges against him had been filed, Charles Henry Bigelow died distraught. By then another Pemberton Mill, rebuilt by David Nevins, had already risen out of the ashes—and from the insurance payouts—of

the cotton states thought that the North would peaceably acquiesce to secession after all. “Republicans are as much afraid of us as we are of them, and they are more impressed with the idea of our resources and our strength. And my opinion now is that if you can avoid a collision, assume towards old Lincoln an attitude of respectful determination,” said a former Georgian congressman to Howell Cobb, “that we can so manage him as to get along till Congress meets, when they repeal all federal laws

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