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Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama: The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution

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Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama: The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A major work of history, investigative journalism that breaks new ground, and personal memoir, Carry Me Home is a dramatic account of the civil rights era's climactic battle in Birmingham, as the movement led by Martin Luther King, Jr., brought down the institutions of segregation.

"The Year of Birmingham," 1963, was one of the most cataclysmic periods in America's long civil rights struggle. That spring, King's child demonstrators faced down Commissioner Bull Connor's police dogs and fire hoses in huge nonviolent marches for desegregation — a spectacle that seemed to belong more in the Old Testament than in twentieth-century America. A few months later, Ku Klux Klansmen retaliated with dynamite, bombing the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church and killing four young black girls. Yet these shocking events also brought redemption: They transformed the halting civil rights movement into a national cause and inspired the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which abolished legal segregation once and for all.

Diane McWhorter, the daughter of a prominent white Birmingham family, brilliantly captures the opposing sides in this struggle for racial justice. Tracing the roots of the civil rights movement to the Old Left and its efforts to organize labor in the 1930s, Carry Me Home shows that the movement was a waning force in desperate need of a victory by the time King arrived in Birmingham. McWhorter describes the competition for primacy among the movement's leaders, especially between Fred Shuttlesworth, Birmingham's flamboyant preacher-activist, and the already world-famous King, who was ambivalent about the direct-action tactics Shuttlesworth had been practicing for years.

Carry Me Home is the first major movement history to uncover the segregationist resistance. McWhorter charts the careers of the bombers back to the New Deal, when Klansmen were agents of the local iron and coal industrialists fighting organized labor. She reveals the strained and veiled collusion between Birmingham's wealthy establishment and its designated subordinates — politicians, the police, and the Klan.

Carry Me Home is also the story of the author's family, which was on the wrong side of the civil rights revolution. McWhorter's quest to find out whether her eccentric father, the prodigal son of the white elite, was a member of the Klan mirrors the book's central revelation of collaboration between the city's Big Mules, who kept their hands clean, and the scruffy vigilantes who did the dirty work.

Carry Me Home is the product of years of research in FBI and police files and archives, and of hundreds of interviews, including conversations with Klansmen who belonged to the most violent klavern in America. John and Robert Kennedy, J. Edgar Hoover, George Wallace, Connor, King, and Shuttlesworth appear against the backdrop of the unforgettable events of the civil rights era — the brutal beating of the Freedom Riders as the police stood by; King's great testament, his "Letter from Birmingham Jail"; and Wallace's defiant "stand in the schoolhouse door." This book is a classic work about this transforming period in American history.

Synopsis:

McWhorter's magisterial narrativve tells the story of the civil rights movement in Birmingham, from the '50s through the '60s. In the tradition of such histories as "Parting the Water" and "Walking in the Wind, Carry Me Home" documents the real story of integrating the South.

Synopsis:

A major work of history, investigative journalism that breaks new ground, and personal memoir, Carry Me Home is a dramatic account of the civil rights era's climactic battle in Birmingham, as the movement led by Martin Luther King, Jr., brought down the institutions of segregation.

"The Year of Birmingham," 1963, was one of the most cataclysmic periods in America's long civil rights struggle. That spring, King's child demonstrators faced down Commissioner Bull Connor's police dogs and fire hoses in huge nonviolent marches for desegregation — a spectacle that seemed to belong more in the Old Testament than in twentieth-century America. A few months later, Ku Klux Klansmen retaliated with dynamite, bombing the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church and killing four young black girls. Yet these shocking events also brought redemption: They transformed the halting civil rights movement into a national cause and inspired the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which abolished legal segregation once and for all.

Diane McWhorter, the daughter of a prominent white Birmingham family, brilliantly captures the opposing sides in this struggle for racial justice. Tracing the roots of the civil rights movement to the Old Left and its efforts to organize labor in the 1930s, Carry Me Home shows that the movement was a waning force in desperate need of a victory by the time King arrived in Birmingham. McWhorter describes the competition for primacy among the movement's leaders, especially between Fred Shuttlesworth, Birmingham's flamboyant preacher-activist, and the already world-famous King, who was ambivalent about the direct-action tactics Shuttlesworth had been practicing for years.

Carry Me Home is the first major movement history to uncover the segregationist resistance. McWhorter charts the careers of the bombers back to the New Deal, when Klansmen were agents of the local iron and coal industrialists fighting organized labor. She reveals the strained and veiled collusion between Birmingham's wealthy establishment and its designated subordinates — politicians, the police, and the Klan.

Carry Me Home is also the story of the author's family, which was on the wrong side of the civil rights revolution. McWhorter's quest to find out whether her eccentric father, the prodigal son of the white elite, was a member of the Klan mirrors the book's central revelation of collaboration between the city's Big Mules, who kept their hands clean, and the scruffy vigilantes who did the dirty work.

Carry Me Home is the product of years of research in FBI and police files and archives, and of hundreds of interviews, including conversations with Klansmen who belonged to the most violent klavern in America. John and Robert Kennedy, J. Edgar Hoover, George Wallace, Connor, King, and Shuttlesworth appear against the backdrop of the unforgettable events of the civil rights era — the brutal beating of the Freedom Riders as the police stood by; King's great testament, his "Letter from Birmingham Jail"; and Wallace's defiant "stand in the schoolhouse door." This book is a classic work about this transforming period in American history.

About the Author

Diane McWhorter, who grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, is a long-time contributor to The New York Times and writes for the Op-Ed page of USA Today. Her articles about race, politics, and culture have appeared in many national publications, including The Washington Post. Carry Me Home is her first book. She lives in New York City.

Table of Contents

Contents

Preface

Introduction: September 15, 1963

Part I: Precedents, 1938-1959

  1. The City of Perpetual Promise: 1938

  2. Ring Out the Old: 1948

  3. Mass Movements: 1954-1956

  4. Rehearsal: 1956-1959

Part II: Movement, 1960-1962

  1. Breaking Out

  2. Action

  3. Freedom Ride

  4. Pivot

  5. The Full Cast

  6. Progress

Part III: The Year of Birmingham, 1963

  1. New Day Dawns

  2. Mad Dogs and Responsible Negroes

  3. Baptism

  4. Two Mayors and a King

  5. D-Day

  6. Miracle

  7. Mayday

  8. The Threshold

  9. Edge of Heaven

  10. No More Water

  11. The Schoolhouse Door

  12. The End of Segregation

  13. The Beginning of Integration

  14. All the Governor's Men

  15. A Case of Dynamite

  16. The Eve

  17. Denise, Carole, Cynthia, and Addie

  18. Aftershocks

  19. BAPBOMB

  20. General Lee's Namesakes

Epilogue

Abbreviations Used in Source Notes

Notes

Selected Bibliography

Acknowledgments

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780684807478
Author:
McWhorter, Diane
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Author:
McWhorter, Diane
Location:
New York
Subject:
History
Subject:
Americas (North Central South West Indies)
Subject:
African American Studies - History
Subject:
Afro-americans
Subject:
Civil Rights
Subject:
United States - 20th Century (1945 to present)
Subject:
Race relations
Subject:
African Americans
Subject:
Civil rights movements
Subject:
Birmingham
Subject:
Ethnic Studies - African American Studies - Histor
Subject:
Political Freedom & Security - Civil Rights
Subject:
General History
Subject:
United States - 20th Century (1945 to 2000)
Copyright:
Series Volume:
106-481
Publication Date:
March 2001
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
704
Dimensions:
9.46x6.48x1.92 in. 2.33 lbs.

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » African American Studies » Civil Rights Movement
History and Social Science » US History » 1960 to 1980
History and Social Science » US History » 20th Century » General

Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama: The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution Used Hardcover
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$10.95 In Stock
Product details 704 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9780684807478 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , McWhorter's magisterial narrativve tells the story of the civil rights movement in Birmingham, from the '50s through the '60s. In the tradition of such histories as "Parting the Water" and "Walking in the Wind, Carry Me Home" documents the real story of integrating the South.
"Synopsis" by , A major work of history, investigative journalism that breaks new ground, and personal memoir, Carry Me Home is a dramatic account of the civil rights era's climactic battle in Birmingham, as the movement led by Martin Luther King, Jr., brought down the institutions of segregation.

"The Year of Birmingham," 1963, was one of the most cataclysmic periods in America's long civil rights struggle. That spring, King's child demonstrators faced down Commissioner Bull Connor's police dogs and fire hoses in huge nonviolent marches for desegregation — a spectacle that seemed to belong more in the Old Testament than in twentieth-century America. A few months later, Ku Klux Klansmen retaliated with dynamite, bombing the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church and killing four young black girls. Yet these shocking events also brought redemption: They transformed the halting civil rights movement into a national cause and inspired the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which abolished legal segregation once and for all.

Diane McWhorter, the daughter of a prominent white Birmingham family, brilliantly captures the opposing sides in this struggle for racial justice. Tracing the roots of the civil rights movement to the Old Left and its efforts to organize labor in the 1930s, Carry Me Home shows that the movement was a waning force in desperate need of a victory by the time King arrived in Birmingham. McWhorter describes the competition for primacy among the movement's leaders, especially between Fred Shuttlesworth, Birmingham's flamboyant preacher-activist, and the already world-famous King, who was ambivalent about the direct-action tactics Shuttlesworth had been practicing for years.

Carry Me Home is the first major movement history to uncover the segregationist resistance. McWhorter charts the careers of the bombers back to the New Deal, when Klansmen were agents of the local iron and coal industrialists fighting organized labor. She reveals the strained and veiled collusion between Birmingham's wealthy establishment and its designated subordinates — politicians, the police, and the Klan.

Carry Me Home is also the story of the author's family, which was on the wrong side of the civil rights revolution. McWhorter's quest to find out whether her eccentric father, the prodigal son of the white elite, was a member of the Klan mirrors the book's central revelation of collaboration between the city's Big Mules, who kept their hands clean, and the scruffy vigilantes who did the dirty work.

Carry Me Home is the product of years of research in FBI and police files and archives, and of hundreds of interviews, including conversations with Klansmen who belonged to the most violent klavern in America. John and Robert Kennedy, J. Edgar Hoover, George Wallace, Connor, King, and Shuttlesworth appear against the backdrop of the unforgettable events of the civil rights era — the brutal beating of the Freedom Riders as the police stood by; King's great testament, his "Letter from Birmingham Jail"; and Wallace's defiant "stand in the schoolhouse door." This book is a classic work about this transforming period in American history.

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