A MDAH Publication | Volume 46 No. 8 | August 2004
Catch Up with New Books
Mississippi Women: Their Histories, Their Lives presents seventeen fascinating life stories, ranging from Felicité Girodeau of old Natchezboth a person of color and a slaveholderto Vera Mae Pigee, who "mothered" the civil rights movement in Mississippi. Some are well known, others prominent in their time but faded since into obscurity; some have never received the attention they deserve. Among the seventeen are Eudora Welty, Kate Freeman Clark, Margaret Walker Alexander, and Fannie Lou Hamer. Editors of the book are Martha H. Swain, Elizabeth Anne Payne, and Marjorie Julian Spruill, with Susan Ditto as associate editor. It is the first of two volumes documenting the Mississippi Women's History Project, presenting recent scholarship on the achievements and experiences of women in Mississippi over the last four centuries: this volume is biographical, focusing on the lives of individuals. The second volume will be topical. From the University of Georgia Press, cloth $44.95, paper $22.95.
Now available in paper for the first time, Triumph & Defeat: The Vicksburg Campaign encapsulates the complex and decisive campaign to capture the city of Vicksburg and sever the Confederacy. Author Terrence Winschel, chief historian, Vicks-burg National Military Park, weaves a professional lifetime of personal experience and study. His chapters cover every major aspect of what many consider to have been the decisive military achievement of the warthe capture of "The Gibraltar of the Confederacy." Many maps and photographs are included. From Savas Batie, $16.95.
An important but little-known aspect of the civil rights movement is explored in Radio and the Struggle for Civil Rights in the South by Brian Ward. "The great achievement of this book," writes University of Mississippi history professor Ted Ownby, "is to detail, place by place, what radio meant to southerners, especially black southerners, in the civil rights years. It excels at showing the potential of radio to unify people, to get out information, to dramatize and uphold cultural ideals, to entertain…." From University Press of Florida, cloth, $39.95.
In a moving and personal memoir, Displaced Person: A Girl's Life in Russia, Germany and America, Ella E. Schneider Hilton tells of her arduous life in Europe and her shock to find that in AmericaHolly Springs, Mississippiher family's suffering continued, as they picked cotton and lived in poverty. It was not until she arrived at Belhaven College in Jackson that she began to thrive for the first time. From Louisiana State University Press, cloth, $34.95.
Teachers, students, and civil war buffs will be interested in John C. Waugh's 20 Good Reasons to Study the Civil War. Essays back up each reason, which include "It was a watershed in American history," "It revolutionized war on the water," " It was a war of political oddities," "It produced men of fabulous fortunes," and " It was unique." The foreword is by Jim Lehrer of PBS. From McWhiney Foundation Press, paper, $12.95.
A Bachelor's Life in Antebellum Mississippi: The Diary of Dr. Elijah Millington Walker, 1849-1852, edited by Lynette Boney Wrenn, reveals the personal and professional life of an ambitious young physician living in Oxford during his medical apprenticeship. Walker's style of writing is engaging, and his observations about women, politics, medicine, slavery, and the passing scene provide valuable insights. From the University of Tennessee Press, cloth, $34.
Between Midnight & Day: The Last Unpublished Blues Archive features Dick Waterman's remarkable photographs of some of the greatest blues and rock artists, including Mississippi John Hurt, Muddy Waters, B. B. King, Lightning Hopkins, Chuck Berry, Otha Turner, Taj Mahal, Janis Joplin, and others. From Thunder's Mouth Press, paper, $29.95.
Paul V. Canonici examines the pursuit by Italian immigrants of "the better life" in Mississippiand their struggles against mosquitoes, floods, prejudice, and morein The Delta Italians. More than 250 photographs are included. From Calo Creative Designs, cloth, $49.95. Send payment along with $3.50 tax (Miss. Residents only) and $5 shipping to P. O. Box 2207, Madison, MS 39120.
Slavery and the American South, edited by Winthrop D. Jordan, collects essays by outstanding scholars who offer new examinations of the culture of southern slavery. From University Press of Mississippi, cloth, $45.
Slavery and Frontier Mississippi, 1720-1835, by David J. Libby, reveals the hard reality of slavery as compared with that of popular myth. Draconian responses to the 1835 slave conspiracy in Madison County are examined. This is the first comprehensive history of slavery in the state since Charles Sydnor's Slavery in Mississippi (1933). From University of Mississippi Press, cloth, $40.
William Wells Brown (1814-1884), a former slave and abolitionist leader, wrote the first military history of African Americans, The Negro in the American Rebellion, which assailed the hatred and ignorance that kept blacks oppressed after Appomattox. A critical edition has been published by Ohio University Press in which John David Smith, graduate alumni distinguished professor of history at North Carolina State University, frames the book within recent scholarship on slavery, emancipation, and African American participation in the U.S. Army. Paper, $24.95.
by the Mississippi Department of Archives
and History Elbert R. Hilliard, director Chrissy Wilson, editor