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The Resource This our dark country : the American settlers of Liberia, Catherine Reef

This our dark country : the American settlers of Liberia, Catherine Reef

Label
This our dark country : the American settlers of Liberia
Title
This our dark country
Title remainder
the American settlers of Liberia
Statement of responsibility
Catherine Reef
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Explores the history of the colony, later the independent nation of Liberia, which was established on the west coast of Africa in 1822 as a haven for free African Americans
Review
  • Gr 5 Up –Reef presents this biography of the African nation from its birth in the early 19th century to the present day with the same attention to primary sources and visual materials as she did in her biographies of Sigmund Freud (2001) and Walt Whitman (1995, both Clarion). This account of the country's complex history is presented chronologically, making generous use of letters, diaries, photographs, and prints. In 1816, a group of wealthy and influential whites founded what became the American Colonization Society. The main purpose was to find a way to relocate free blacks to their own colony. The underlying motivations and the complicated arguments of the time for and against this volatile issue are discussed in great detail, taking care to explain not only the ignorance and prejudice that shaped the decisions, but also the hope and promise that relocation held for many. Reef does not hold back the ugly truths in Liberia's history, including the abhorrent treatment of people native to the region as well as recaptured slaves who were delivered to Liberia against their will. Although the chronology is occasionally choppy, jumping between different groups of settlers and the complicated state of affairs in America, the foundations of this seldom-explored topic are readily understood.–Genevieve Gallagher, Orange County Public Library, VA --Genevieve Gallagher (Reviewed December 1, 2002) (School Library Journal, vol 48, issue 12, p168)
  • Catherine Reef describes the founding of Liberia in 1822 by members of the American Colonization Society, who wished to set up a colony for free blacks and former captives, in This Is Our Dark Country: The American Settlers of Liberia. Period photographs and engravings illustrate the volume. Reef's epilogue looks at modern-day Liberia and adds a sobering note: the country is now war-torn and economically unstable.
  • What usually appears in textbooks as a footnote to a footnote of history is given a fuller treatment in an uneven yet laudable accounting. Most American schoolchildren learn of Liberia (if at all) in connection with the abolitionist movement of the early 19th century. In 1822, the American colony of Liberia was established on the coast of West Africa with the specific intent of settling freed slaves far away from the maelstrom of racial unrest that was the US at the time. Here, where textbooks leave off, is where the real story of Liberia begins, and Reef (Sigmund Freud, not reviewed, etc.) does a generally creditable job of telling it. From the mixed motivations of the white men who supported the enterprise to the mixed feelings of the African-American population for whom it was established, the narrative thoroughly explores the intellectual and ideological context of the day. It introduces the 19th-century settlers of Liberia as Christian, primarily middle-class black Americans who traveled to Africa to make a country of their own. The account draws heavily on primary source materials, including copious excerpts from the journals, letters, and, later, publications of the colonists. Perhaps because of this reliance, the narrative is weighted heavily toward the Americo-Liberians (as the settlers called themselves) and their own vision of nation-building. Unfortunately, it does not really question the emergence of a class system that placed those Americo-Liberians squarely at the top—even though the conclusion of the history indicates that what modern Liberia has become in large part stems from conflicts between colonizer and colonized. The account is handsomely accompanied by archival material, including photographs; it might have been better served by the inclusion throughout of maps, which are relegated to an appendix. Despite its flaws, this offering stands as a valuable addition to children's literature both of African-American history and of American imperialism, and deserves recognition for its attempt to tell the story behind the footnote. (index, endnotes, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 10+) (Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2002)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
190733
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Reef, Catherine
Illustrations
  • illustrations
  • maps
Index
index present
Interest level
MG
Literary form
non fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 5
  • 12
Nature of contents
bibliography
Reading level
8.9
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Study program name
Accelerated Reader AR
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • American Colonization Society
  • African Americans
  • African Americans
  • African Americans
  • African Americans
  • Slaves
  • Antislavery movements
  • Liberia
  • Liberia
Target audience
pre adolescent
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
the American settlers of Liberia
Label
This our dark country : the American settlers of Liberia, Catherine Reef
Link
http://www.loc.gov/catdir/description/hm022/2002003966.html
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 129-132) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
"These Free, Sunny Shores" -- "Beyond the Reach of Mixture" -- Divine providence -- Americans -- Life upriver -- Progress -- "Some Fertile Country" -- "The Beclouded Sun" -- Epilogue: Liberia, troubled land
Control code
438880
Dimensions
25 cm
Extent
136 pages
Isbn
9780618147854
Isbn Type
(alk. paper)
Lccn
2002003966
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations, maps
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780618147854
  • (Sirsi) ADH-8159
Label
This our dark country : the American settlers of Liberia, Catherine Reef
Link
http://www.loc.gov/catdir/description/hm022/2002003966.html
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 129-132) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
"These Free, Sunny Shores" -- "Beyond the Reach of Mixture" -- Divine providence -- Americans -- Life upriver -- Progress -- "Some Fertile Country" -- "The Beclouded Sun" -- Epilogue: Liberia, troubled land
Control code
438880
Dimensions
25 cm
Extent
136 pages
Isbn
9780618147854
Isbn Type
(alk. paper)
Lccn
2002003966
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations, maps
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780618147854
  • (Sirsi) ADH-8159

Library Locations

    • Central LibraryBorrow it
      710 W. Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, 78701, US
      30.2713021 -97.7460168
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