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By John F. Marszalek

ISBN-10: 0813030021

ISBN-13: 9780813030029

Born a slave in 1850s South Carolina and elected to Congress within the Eighteen Nineties, George W. Murray looked to be the antithesis of the African American male within the Jim Crow South and served as a beacon for African american citizens who observed their hopes beaten within the aftermath of the Civil warfare. Early within the 20th century, notwithstanding, tragically defeated by means of corrupt Reconstruction politics and white supremacist attitudes he couldn't get away, Murray used to be pushed from place of work and from the kingdom. Drawing on huge examine to reconstruct Murray’s existence tale, Marszalek defines an age and its humans throughout the compelling conflict of 1 guy and indicates how and why the nation’s efforts to reconstruct the South right into a biracial democracy failed.
            Murray’s occupation, which spanned 1 / 4 of a century, integrated phrases within the U.S. condominium of Representatives and management of South Carolina’s Republican get together. He used to be an investor in addition to a landed house owner who offered tracts to terrible blacks to ensure that them to qualify to vote. yet by way of the start of the 20 th century, together with his social gathering in shambles, he discovered himself on trial for alleged forgery in a land take care of of his black land dealers. Murray used to be discovered accountable, and the South Carolina splendid court docket upheld the decision. Sentenced to demanding exertions on a sequence gang, he escaped to Chicago the place he spent the remainder of his lifestyles in obscurity.

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Additional info for A Black Congressman in the Age of Jim Crow: South Carolina's George Washington Murray

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The 1882 registration restrictions and the eight-box law made it impossible for Republicans to win any state office. At the congressional level, the gerrymandering of districts gave Republicans a chance in only one of the state’s seven districts. The national party’s loss of the White House to Grover Cleveland, a Democrat, was further disheartening, so discouraging, in fact, that the state party never even held a state convention during the Cleveland presidency. The Republicans reaction to their disfranchisement predicament was to withdraw from the political scene.

2 Such group solidarity meant uplifting the black masses. “In order to elevate ourselves we must elevate the race,” Murray said. The world blamed the entire race for the transgressions of any individual, so every black person had to perform with superiority and honesty for the good of all. Black overcrowding in the cities had to stop. Too many people were abandoning the country for the city, and this exodus was driving down wages. ” Blacks should even organize vigilante groups to help the police track down “every vagrant and loafer” on the streets.

The farm operations were remunerative enough for Murray to afford a hired hand. 21 Buttressed with his farm success, Murray began a political career in April 1880 as a delegate from Sumter County to the state Republican Party convention. S. census. He was a Republican, as were most blacks during those years, but his party was a floundering one. The South Carolina Republican Party had never been unified even during Reconstruction, and it was now staggering from the 1876 trouncing it had received at the hands of Wade Hampton and the resurgent Conservative Democrats.

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A Black Congressman in the Age of Jim Crow: South Carolina's George Washington Murray by John F. Marszalek

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