US history https://mag.uchicago.edu/tags/us-history en A young adult book explores the 1919 Chicago race riot https://mag.uchicago.edu/arts-humanities/young-adult-book-explores-1919-chicago-race-riot <div class="field field--name-field-letter-box-story-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <img src="/sites/default/files/19_Spring_Golus_History-matters.jpg" width="1836" height="1300" alt="National Guard soldiers and African American men on a street corner in Chicago during the 1919 race riot" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/profile/admin" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">admin</span></span> <span>Tue, 04/30/2019 - 15:44</span> <div class="field field--name-field-caption field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>National Guard soldiers, like those shown here, were called out to put a stop to the weeklong race riot, which left 38 people dead and hundreds more injured. About two-thirds of the wounded were African American. (Photography by Jun Fujita, Chicago History Museum, ICHi-065477)</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refauthors field--type-entity-reference field--label-visually_hidden"> <div class="field--label sr-only">Author</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field--item"> <div about="/author/carrie-golus-ab91-am93"> <a href="/author/carrie-golus-ab91-am93"> <div class="field field--name-name field--type-string field--label-hidden field--item">Carrie Golus, AB’91, AM’93</div> </a> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refsource field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/publication-sources/university-chicago-magazine" hreflang="en">The University of Chicago Magazine</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-issue field--type-text field--label-hidden field--item">Spring/19</div> <div class="field field--name-field-subhead field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Claire Hartfield, JD’82, wants teenagers to know their history.</p></div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>When <a href="http://clairehartfield.com/"><strong>Claire Hartfield</strong></a>, JD’82, was growing up in Hyde Park, she loved listening to her grandmother talk about life as a young woman in Chicago in the 1910s and ’20s. “Her stories were about the excitement of living in the Black Belt at that time,” Hartfield says. “What poet Langston Hughes referred to as ‘excitement from noon to noon.’”</p> <p>In 2014, as Hartfield watched the footage of protests in Ferguson, Missouri, after Michael Brown was killed by a police officer, one of her grandmother’s stories came to mind.</p> <p>Shortly after her grandmother had moved up to Chicago from the South, she was riding the streetcar home from work. “As she got closer to the black community, she saw mobs of young men out in the streets,” Hartfield says. The streetcar driver refused to let Hartfield’s grandmother off at her stop. She had to ride to the end of the line and walk home through “what turned out to be, when I did research, the first full day” of the weeklong 1919 race riot.</p> <p>Hartfield’s book <a href="https://www.hmhco.com/shop/books/A-Few-Red-Drops/9780544785137"><em>A Few Red Drops: The Chicago Race Riot of 1919</em></a> (Clarion Books, 2018) takes its title from a <a href="https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/45036/i-am-the-people-the-mob">Carl Sandburg poem</a>. The book, written with teens in mind, has received numerous honors and awards, including the 2019 Coretta Scott King Book Award, and was named a 2019 Illinois Reading Council Top Book to Read and a Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Books 2018. It’s Hartfield’s second book. Her first, the picture book <em>Me and Uncle Romie</em> (Dial Books, 2002), is a fictionalized story about Harlem Renaissance collage artist Romare Bearden. </p> <div class="story-inline-img"> <figure role="group"><img alt="Book covers for A Few Red Drops and Me and Uncle Romie" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="f5ee5846-5454-4fe6-a6b2-6db88bb02756" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/19_Spring_Golus_History-matters_SpotA.jpg" /><figcaption>(Photography by Guido Mendez)</figcaption></figure></div> <p><em>A Few Red Drops</em> begins on a hot July day, at a time when only the rich had electric fans. Five black teenagers decided to cool off by floating on a raft in Lake Michigan. When they drifted too close to what was then the “white” beach, a white man began throwing stones. One of the teens, Eugene Williams, was hit in the head and drowned.</p> <p>The killing sparked a week of racial violence and arson. By the end, 38 people had died (23 black and 15 white) and a Lithuanian neighborhood had been burned to the ground by Irish gang members in blackface who wanted to keep the riot going. Hartfield’s book digs deep into the complex history of the riot: “The further back I went, the further back I had to go,” she said during a talk at 57th Street Books. </p> <p>During Hartfield’s research, “I came to see that it’s intimately tied to what we’re going through,” she says. “It’s really a continuum” from the 1919 riots to the 2014 protests that sparked her idea. Hartfield wanted young people to have that context to understand the present.</p> <p>On <a href="http://clairehartfield.com/">her website</a>, she confesses she once made a list of the 10 best excuses for getting out of history class at Kenwood Academy. She began to understand why history mattered when she was asked to join an anti-apartheid march in 1977—and wanted to know how apartheid had happened in the first place. </p> <p>“You can think of it this way,” Hartfield writes. “History is you if you had been born a little earlier.”After graduating from the Law School, Claire Hartfield, JD’82, oversaw the development of school desegregation plans for the cities of Chicago and Rockford, Illinois. She began to write books for young readers after becoming a parent and realizing that “some stories were not being told, important stories.”</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-reftopic field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/topics/arts-humanities" hreflang="en">Arts &amp; Humanities</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/city-chicago" hreflang="en">City of Chicago</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/race" hreflang="en">Race</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/us-history" hreflang="en">US history</a></div> </div> <span class="a2a_kit a2a_kit_size_32 addtoany_list" data-a2a-url="https://mag.uchicago.edu/arts-humanities/young-adult-book-explores-1919-chicago-race-riot" data-a2a-title="A young adult book explores the 1919 Chicago race riot"><a class="a2a_button_facebook"></a><a class="a2a_button_twitter"></a><a class="a2a_button_google_plus"></a><a class="a2a_button_print"></a><a class="a2a_dd addtoany_share_save" href="https://www.addtoany.com/share#url=https%3A%2F%2Fmag.uchicago.edu%2Farts-humanities%2Fyoung-adult-book-explores-1919-chicago-race-riot&amp;title=A%20young%20adult%20book%20explores%20the%201919%20Chicago%20race%20riot"></a></span> Tue, 30 Apr 2019 20:44:04 +0000 admin 7091 at https://mag.uchicago.edu Dressing the part https://mag.uchicago.edu/law-policy-society/dressing-part <div class="field field--name-field-letter-box-story-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <img src="/sites/default/files/1605_Adamcyzk_Dressing-part.jpg" width="1600" height="743" alt="" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/profile/jmiller" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">jmiller</span></span> <span>Fri, 04/29/2016 - 10:35</span> <div class="field field--name-field-caption field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>An 1862 ad for a bulletproof vest in <em>Harper’s Weekly</em> (left) promises to “double the value and power of the soldier,” while the breastplate of such a vest, found on a Shiloh battlefield, reveals its penetrability. (Photos courtesy American Antiquarian Society, Worchester, Massachusetts (left), and Tennessee Virtual Archive, Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville)</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refauthors field--type-entity-reference field--label-visually_hidden"> <div class="field--label sr-only">Author</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field--item"> <div about="/author/laura-adamczyk"> <a href="/author/laura-adamczyk"> <div class="field field--name-name field--type-string field--label-hidden field--item">Laura Adamczyk</div> </a> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refsource field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/publication-sources/dialogo" hreflang="en">Dialogo</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-issue field--type-text field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Spring/Summer 2016</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-subhead field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The clothing and material culture of the Civil War era offer a history student new insights into gender and race.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What can a bulletproof vest tell us about gender? How can one’s choice of clothing reveal racial discrimination in America? Doctoral student <a href="https://history.uchicago.edu/directory/sarah-jones-weicksel" target="_blank">Sarah Jones Weicksel</a>, AM’09 (<a href="https://history.uchicago.edu" target="_blank">History</a>), uses clothing, images, texts, and other objects to understand gender, race, material culture, and everyday life during the Civil War and emancipation.</p> <p>As part of a Committee on Institutional Cooperation/Smithsonian Institution fellowship, Weicksel is researching materials at the National Museums of American History and African American History and Culture in Washington, DC. The objects—some newly donated—help her answer such questions for her dissertation, “The Fabric of War: Clothing, Culture, and Violence in the American Civil War Era.”</p> <p align="center"><img src="http://mag.uchicago.edu/sites/default/files/hr.png" width="450" /></p> <h2>What objects have you found surprising or out of the ordinary?</h2> <p>One of the most entertaining was a pair of pants worn by a Union Zouave soldier (see cover). They’re basically 1860s Hammer pants. You see them in photographs and illustrations, but looking at them in front of you gives you a different understanding of how they would actually fit, how baggy and loose, and how vibrant the colors were.</p> <p>Probably the most surprising thing—and this wasn’t at the Smithsonian but in my broader research—was how many bulletproof vests exist. I have a chapter in a volume coming out in May that looks at body armor, death, and gender in the Civil War.</p> <h2>What do these vests have to do with gender?</h2> <p>Historians have assumed that men who wore them were considered cowardly by their comrades, but there’s a more complex story. With body armor, we see two competing ideals of manhood and duty—one that demanded that a soldier sacrifice his life for the nation and another that valued the protection of his life.</p> <p>Advertisers helped Americans view using armor as a manly act. To confront the enemy was brave, but to protect oneself showed that a man had a stronger sense of manhood and commitment to both nation and family. This was a shifting culture in which death and manhood were intertwined.</p> <p>Unfortunately, the vests were incredibly dangerous. You’re basically wearing a fabric vest that encases a thin steel shell. If you were shot at from close range, you would have had a bullet, cloth, and shrapnel pushed into the wound.</p> <h2>What can clothing tell you that text or photography can’t?</h2> <p>If I rely solely on texts, I can tell one kind of story, but if I place those texts in conversation with images and material culture, I have a different story. In the case of body armor, texts reveal how much the vests cost, available sizes, and men’s thoughts about them. When I add the actual objects, I get a real sense of their size, of how jagged the edges are when punctured. That knowledge allows me to read the texts differently.</p> <h2>What objects do you see a lot of? What is missing?</h2> <p>I see so many uniforms. Lots of photographs, lots of items related to generals. What’s missing is clothing worn by poor or enslaved people. If you only have a few outfits, you wear them until they’re falling apart.</p> <h2>How is your research reflected in contemporary culture?</h2> <p>The powerful role clothing played in the 1860s and ’70s helped frame today’s attitudes about clothing and race. African Americans expressing themselves through clothing experienced a violent backlash in the postwar era. Incidents related to clothing in which white men and women targeted African Americans—whether stripping it off of a person’s body or being upset about a black woman wearing a fine dress—could be precursors to a horrific assault or even a lynching.</p> <p>Wearing clothing that did not fit white society’s dress codes could be considered a defiant act that could prompt physical violence, which was then, and continues to be, blamed on the victims. For many, evoking the image of the hoodie recalls the death of Trayvon Martin. It’s important that we understand clothing’s place in emancipation—that’s one defining moment that continues to shape the way people think about self-presentation in relationship to race.</p> <h2>How does your research fit into Civil War research as a whole?</h2> <p>The Civil War is one of the most studied topics in US history. So you might ask what could be left to say. But there has only recently been an effort to think about the material culture of this war. By weaving together objects, images, and texts, I tell a different kind of history about everyday wartime conflicts—how people created new boundaries of belonging and exclusion. Through clothing, people confronted questions about race, gender, the individual, and their relationships to one another and the government. Those struggles helped to determine who, on what terms and by whose authority, would be considered “American.”</p> <p align="center"><img src="http://mag.uchicago.edu/sites/default/files/hr.png" width="450" /></p> <p><em>Interview edited and adapted.</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-reftopic field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/topics/law-policy-society" hreflang="en">Law, Policy &amp; Society</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/civil-war" hreflang="en">Civil War</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/us-history" hreflang="en">US history</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/military" hreflang="en">Military</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/fashion" hreflang="en">Fashion</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refformats field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/formats/interview" hreflang="en">Interview</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-relatedlinks field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Follow @<a href="http://twitter.com/uchicagossd" target="_blank">UChicagoSSD</a>.</p> <p>Visit the Division of the Social Sciences <a href="https://socialsciences.uchicago.edu" target="_blank">website</a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><img src="http://mag.uchicago.edu/sites/default/files/2016_Summer_Dialogo-cover.png" /></p> <h5>This article appears in the Spring/Summer 2016 issue of <em>Dialogo</em>, the biannual publication for University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences alumni.</h5> <div class="issue-link"><a href="../dialogo-archive" target="_self">VIEW ALL <em>DIALOGO</em> STORIES</a></div> <div class="issue-link"><a href="http://socialsciences.uchicago.edu/alumni" target="_blank">READ ADDITIONAL SSD NEWS</a></div> </div> <span class="a2a_kit a2a_kit_size_32 addtoany_list" data-a2a-url="https://mag.uchicago.edu/law-policy-society/dressing-part" data-a2a-title="Dressing the part"><a class="a2a_button_facebook"></a><a class="a2a_button_twitter"></a><a class="a2a_button_google_plus"></a><a class="a2a_button_print"></a><a class="a2a_dd addtoany_share_save" href="https://www.addtoany.com/share#url=https%3A%2F%2Fmag.uchicago.edu%2Flaw-policy-society%2Fdressing-part&amp;title=Dressing%20the%20part"></a></span> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 15:35:59 +0000 jmiller 5598 at https://mag.uchicago.edu Smashing pumpkins https://mag.uchicago.edu/science-medicine/smashing-pumpkins <div class="field field--name-field-letter-box-story-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <img src="/sites/default/files/1506_Searcy_Pumpkin-bombs.jpg" width="1600" height="743" alt="" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/profile/jmiller" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">jmiller</span></span> <span>Wed, 07/01/2015 - 16:07</span> <div class="field field--name-field-caption field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Photos of pumpkin bombs. (Department of Defense)</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refauthors field--type-entity-reference field--label-visually_hidden"> <div class="field--label sr-only">Author</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field--item"> <div about="/author/maureen-searcy"> <a href="/author/maureen-searcy"> <div class="field field--name-name field--type-string field--label-hidden field--item">Maureen Searcy</div> </a> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refsource field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/publication-sources/inquiry" hreflang="en">Inquiry</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-issue field--type-text field--label-hidden field--item">Summer/15</div> <div class="field field--name-field-subhead field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Physics professor Henry Frisch shares a piece of atomic history.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Seventy years ago, at 5:30 a.m. on July 16, 1945, <a href="http://www.losalamoshistory.org" target="_blank">Los Alamos</a> scientists conducted the <a href="https://www.osti.gov/opennet/manhattan-project-history/Events/1945/trinity.htm" target="_blank">Trinity test</a>, detonating a plutonium bomb nicknamed the Gadget in the New Mexico desert—a test run for Fat Man (the Gadget’s twin) and the uranium-based Little Boy. Dropped on Japan during World War II, these were the only two atomic bombs ever used in warfare.</p> <p>Born in Los Alamos while his father and mother, physicist <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/1991/05/25/obituaries/david-frisch-73-dies-a-physicist-at-m-i-t.html" target="_blank">David H. Frisch</a> and geneticist <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/12/science/rose-e-frisch-scientist-who-linked-body-fat-to-fertility-dies-at-96.html" target="_blank">Rose E. Frisch</a>, worked on the <a href="http://physics.uchicago.edu/about/history/manhattan.html" target="_blank">Manhattan Project</a>, physics professor Henry Frisch has a memento of that history—a hunk of steel shell from a pumpkin bomb, given to him by John Coster-Mullen, author of <em><a href="https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/9779997-atom-bombs" target="_blank">Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man</a></em>.&nbsp;</p> <p>Pumpkin bombs were Gadget and Fat Man–style devices—sometimes inert, sometimes explosive—used to test the structure’s stability and the logistics of avoiding a crash during takeoff, dropping the bomb, and escaping the blast. Pumpkins contained no plutonium, says Frisch, so there was no danger of “dropping nuclear weapons on American soil” during practice.&nbsp;</p> <p>Frisch keeps the pumpkin shell in his <a href="http://hep.uchicago.edu" target="_blank">High Energy Physics</a> building office, but he and others hope that it and other Manhattan Project artifacts will eventually be housed in a permanent display on campus, stewarded by the <a href="https://efi.uchicago.edu" target="_blank">Enrico Fermi Institute</a>.</p> <p> <h5>[[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_original","fid":"2696","attributes":{"alt":"","class":"media-image","height":"293","typeof":"foaf:Image","width":"500"}}]] A steel scrap from a Manhattan Project pumpkin bomb. (Photography by Maureen Searcy)</h5> </p> <p><em>Updated 07.13.2015: The first paragraph of the original story incorrectly stated that the Gadget, Fat Man, and Little Boy were the only atomic bombs ever detonated. It has been corrected to say that Fat Man and Little Boy were the only atomic bombs ever used in warfare.</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-reftopic field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--item"><a href="/topics/science-medicine" hreflang="en">Science &amp; Medicine</a></div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/manhattan-project" hreflang="en">Manhattan Project</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/us-history" hreflang="en">US history</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/military" hreflang="en">Military</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/nuclear-weapons" hreflang="en">Nuclear Weapons</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tags/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-refuchicago field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/physical-sciences-division" hreflang="en">Physical Sciences Division</a></div> </div> <span class="a2a_kit a2a_kit_size_32 addtoany_list" data-a2a-url="https://mag.uchicago.edu/science-medicine/smashing-pumpkins" data-a2a-title="Smashing pumpkins"><a class="a2a_button_facebook"></a><a class="a2a_button_twitter"></a><a class="a2a_button_google_plus"></a><a class="a2a_button_print"></a><a class="a2a_dd addtoany_share_save" href="https://www.addtoany.com/share#url=https%3A%2F%2Fmag.uchicago.edu%2Fscience-medicine%2Fsmashing-pumpkins&amp;title=Smashing%20pumpkins"></a></span> Wed, 01 Jul 2015 21:07:14 +0000 jmiller 4800 at https://mag.uchicago.edu