Carnegie Mellon University

Center for the Arts in Society

Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences and College of Fine Arts

October 05, 2012

Through the Lens of Freedom

Civil War Images of Freed People in Coastal South Carolina and the Birth of Gullah/Geechee Identity

Through the Lens of Freedom

Please join Associate Professor of History Edda Fields-Black for a discussion on the Civil War images of freed people in coastal South Carolina and the birth of Gullah/Geechee identity

The Civil War, the first American war documented by photography and photo journalism, was an extraordinary historical moment, which produced some of the earliest images of Blacks on plantations in the US South. In Port Royal, South Carolina after the flight of plantation owners/slave holders and Union occupation beginning in 1861, Civil War photographers also captured the first images of Gullah/Geechee culture along the Atlantic coast from the Cape River in North Carolina to the St. John’s River in Florida. This lecture will explore the photographs, their subjects, and the photographers and ask what role the highly stylized plantation photographs played in both the documentation of the ambiguity of emancipation during the Civil War, the recruitment of northern teachers and volunteers for the Port Royal Experiment, and the construction of Gullah/Geechee identity.

Lunch will be provided. If you would like to attend, please RSVP to:

Dean’s Conference Room (Baker Hall 154R)
Friday, October 5th, 2012, 12:00 - 1:30pm