17 Jan

Thank you, POTUS, and thank you, BrainPOP


I’ve been asking librarians and educators for insight into how they teach The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch, and especially how they provide contextual information on the Reconstruction era. One suggestion involves a resource many schools and classrooms already have access to: the duo of Tim and Moby at BrainPOP.

Thanks for the suggestion, Bethe!

I’m also grateful to President Barack Obama, who this past week issued a proclamation establishing the Reconstruction Era National Monument in Beaufort County, South Carolina. The proclamation begins:

The Reconstruction Era, a period spanning the early Civil War years until the start of Jim Crow racial segregation in the 1890s, was a time of significant transformation in the United States, as the Nation grappled with the challenge of integrating millions of newly freed African Americans into its social, political, and economic life. It was in many ways the Nation’s Second Founding, as Americans abolished slavery and struggled earnestly, if not always successfully, to build a nation of free and equal citizens. During Reconstruction, Congress passed the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth constitutional amendments that abolished slavery, guaranteed due process and equal protection under the law, and gave all males the ability to vote by prohibiting voter discrimination based on race, color, or previous condition of servitude. Ultimately, the unmet promises of Reconstruction led to the modern civil rights movement a century later.

That’s some pretty helpful context right there, with plenty more in the rest of the proclamation. And I’m just so glad that this place — this acknowledgement of an essential part of American history — will exist. I can’t wait.

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