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"A Most Singular and Interesting Attempt": The Freedmen's Bureau at Marshall, Texas

"A Most Singular and Interesting Attempt": The Freedmen's Bureau at Marshall, Texas The “Little Virginia Courthouse” in Marshall, 1852–1889, the first of Harrison County’s brick courthouses. It was the courthouse in Marshall when the Freedmen’s Bureau operated there. Courtesy the Harrison County Historical Museum. “A Most Singular and Interesting Attempt”: The Freedmen’s Bureau at Marshall, Texas Christopher Bean* n March 3, 1865, Congress created, according to historian O W. E. B. Du Bois, one of the most “singular and interesting of the attempts made by a great nation to grapple with vast problems of race and social condition.” This organization, the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, which resided under the auspices of the War De- partment and was responsible for the freedmen’s transition from servitude to citizen during Reconstruction, faced a daunting task the likes of which had never been tried before and one that most white southerners vowed to make impossible. According to historian Eric Foner, white southerners “resented the Bureau as a symbol of Confederate defeat and a barrier to the authority reminiscent of slavery that planters hoped to impose upon the freedmen.” Most white southerners harbored deep animosity toward the victorious Union army, white Unionists, and black freedmen and were willing to employ intimidation and even http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Southwestern Historical Quarterly Southwest Center (Univ of Arizona)

"A Most Singular and Interesting Attempt": The Freedmen's Bureau at Marshall, Texas

Southwestern Historical Quarterly , Volume 110 (4) – Jun 11, 2007

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Publisher
Southwest Center (Univ of Arizona)
Copyright
Copyright © 2007 The Texas State Historical Association.
ISSN
0038-478x
eISSN
1558-9560

Abstract

The “Little Virginia Courthouse” in Marshall, 1852–1889, the first of Harrison County’s brick courthouses. It was the courthouse in Marshall when the Freedmen’s Bureau operated there. Courtesy the Harrison County Historical Museum. “A Most Singular and Interesting Attempt”: The Freedmen’s Bureau at Marshall, Texas Christopher Bean* n March 3, 1865, Congress created, according to historian O W. E. B. Du Bois, one of the most “singular and interesting of the attempts made by a great nation to grapple with vast problems of race and social condition.” This organization, the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, which resided under the auspices of the War De- partment and was responsible for the freedmen’s transition from servitude to citizen during Reconstruction, faced a daunting task the likes of which had never been tried before and one that most white southerners vowed to make impossible. According to historian Eric Foner, white southerners “resented the Bureau as a symbol of Confederate defeat and a barrier to the authority reminiscent of slavery that planters hoped to impose upon the freedmen.” Most white southerners harbored deep animosity toward the victorious Union army, white Unionists, and black freedmen and were willing to employ intimidation and even

Journal

Southwestern Historical QuarterlySouthwest Center (Univ of Arizona)

Published: Jun 11, 2007

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