Tag: Ulysses S. Grant

Grant’s Mixed Legacy

Grant’s Mixed Legacy

Books can have an impact. Readers without patience to wade through all 1,074 pages of Ron Chernow’s frequently cited biography are told in the introduction that Ulysses S. Grant was “the single most important figure behind Reconstruction” and that the “imperishable story of Grant’s presidency was his campaign to crush ...
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"It is no part of our duty to confound right with wrong": Frederick Douglass and Ulysses S. Grant on Reconciliation and Its Pitfalls

“It is no part of our duty to confound right with wrong”: Frederick Douglass and Ulysses S. Grant on Reconciliation and Its Pitfalls

Speaking in New York City in 1878, Frederick Douglass had a warning for white northerners about how they remembered the Civil War. "Good, wise, and generous men at the North," Douglass observed, "would have us forget and forgive, strew flowers alike and lovingly, on rebel and on loyal graves." A ...
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Public Monuments and Ulysses S. Grant’s Contested Legacy

Public Monuments and Ulysses S. Grant’s Contested Legacy

On Memorial Day, three million people watched the first part of a three-episode documentary on the life of General and President Ulysses S. Grant. Three weeks later—on the much-publicized Juneteenth holiday, no less—a statue of Grant in San Francisco was vandalized and toppled. What gives? The motivations for this act ...
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The Mystery of William Jones, An Enslaved Man Owned by Ulysses S. Grant

The Mystery of William Jones, An Enslaved Man Owned by Ulysses S. Grant

On March 29, 1859, Ulysses S. Grant went to the St. Louis Courthouse to attend to a pressing legal matter. That day Grant signed a manumission paper freeing William Jones, an enslaved African American man that he had previously acquired from his father-in-law, "Colonel" Frederick F. Dent. Described as being ...
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