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Mt. Pleasant Library: Reading among African Americans in 19th Century Rush County

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Title: Mt. Pleasant Library: Reading among African Americans in 19th Century Rush County
Author: O'Bryan, Ann
Permanent Link: http://hdl.handle.net/1805/403
Abstract: In frontier Indiana, beginning in the 1820s, several settlements of free African Americans grew and flourished. Many of the settlers came from Virginia and North Carolina, where earlier settlers, many of them Quakers, had originated. One of those settlements, called the Beech Settlement, developed in Rush County, Indiana, from the late 1820’s. Like other African Americans in antebellum U.S., the settlers of the Beech were anxious to educate themselves and their children. Indeed, the lack of access to education in the South was an important motivation for migration. Despite the difficulties and hard work of creating farms on the frontier, they early on established schools and churches in their communities. Further, the residents of the Beech went beyond teaching and organized a library that was organized, maintained, and used during the years 1842-1869. This article aims to create a portrait of a community of mid-19th century rural African American readers and users of their community library.
Keywords: African Americans
Free African Americans
Libraries
Library History
Rush County, Indiana
Carthage, Indiana
Beech Settlement (Indiana)
Mount Pleasant Library (Rush County, Indiana)
Literacy
Education
Society of Friends
A.M.E. Church
Indiana History (19th Century)
LC Subject: African Americans -- Indiana -- Carthage -- History -- 19th century
African Americans -- Indiana -- Rush County -- History -- 19th century
Indiana -- History -- 19th century
Libraries -- History -- 19th century
African Methodist Episcopal Church
Date: 2005-11
ISSN: 1058-4900
Found At: Black History News and Notes
Appears in Collections: University Library Faculty Research


 

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