Robert S. Levine foregrounds the viewpoints of Black Americans on Reconstruction in his absorbing account of the struggle between the great orator Frederick Douglass and President Andrew Johnson.
When Andrew Johnson assumed the presidency after Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, the country was on the precipice of radical change. Johnson, seemingly more progressive than Lincoln, looked like the ideal person to lead the country. He had already cast himself as a “Moses” for the Black community, and African Americans were optimistic that he would pursue aggressive federal policies for Black equality. […Learn More]