Introduction; Georgia Roots; Illinois in Wartime; Black Springfield; A White Man's Country; The Underworld; The Penitentiary; Springfield, 1908; Appendix; Notes; Selected Bibliography; Index.
Gus Reed was a freed slave who traveled north as Sherman's March was sweeping through Georgia in 1864. His journey ended in Springfield, Illinois, a city undergoing fundamental changes as its white citizens struggled to understand the political, legal, and cultural consequences of emancipation and black citizenship. Reed became known as a petty thief, appearing time and again in the records of the state's courts and prisons. In late 1877, he burglarized the home of a well-known Springfield attorney-and brother of Abraham Lincoln's former law partner-a crime for which he was convicted and sent.
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