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Unpublished Paper
Litigating the Meaning of Emancipation: Reconstruction and Post Reconstruction Era Dilemmas of Freed People and Property
ExpressO (2007)
  • Julie Novkov
Abstract

This article explores how the southern courts managed the policy question of transferring property by bequest in the wake of the Civil War and emancipation. In the years when the infrastructure for Jim Crow was being assembled, many freedmen and freedwomen were able to gain access to property by bequest despite the system’s refusal to endorse broad based land reform. I argue, nonetheless, that these cases carried through a tradition of white patriarchal control of property, rather than heralding the uncertain dawn of a new era of racially egalitarian property rights.

Keywords
  • bequests,
  • race,
  • legal history,
  • emancipation
Disciplines
Publication Date
August, 2007
Citation Information
Julie Novkov. "Litigating the Meaning of Emancipation: Reconstruction and Post Reconstruction Era Dilemmas of Freed People and Property" ExpressO (2007)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/julie_novkov/1/