Arc of Justice: A Saga of Race, Civil Rights, and Murder in the Jazz Age (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Macmillan, Apr 1, 2007 - History - 432 pages
8 Reviews
An electrifying story of the sensational murder trial that divided a city and ignited the civil rights struggle

In 1925, Detroit was a smoky swirl of jazz and speakeasies, assembly lines and fistfights. The advent of automobiles had brought workers from around the globe to compete for manufacturing jobs, and tensions often flared with the KKK in ascendance and violence rising. Ossian Sweet, a proud Negro doctor-grandson of a slave-had made the long climb from the ghetto to a home of his own in a previously all-white neighborhood. Yet just after his arrival, a mob gathered outside his house; suddenly, shots rang out: Sweet, or one of his defenders, had accidentally killed one of the whites threatening their lives and homes.

And so it began-a chain of events that brought America's greatest attorney, Clarence Darrow, into the fray and transformed Sweet into a controversial symbol of equality. Historian Kevin Boyle weaves the police investigation and courtroom drama of Sweet's murder trial into an unforgettable tapestry of narrative history that documents the volatile America of the 1920s and movingly re-creates the Sweet family's journey from slavery through the Great Migration to the middle class. Ossian Sweet's story, so richly and poignantly captured here, is an epic tale of one man trapped by the battles of his era's changing times.†Arc of Justice is the winner of the 2004 National Book Award for Nonfiction.

  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
5
4 stars
3
3 stars
0
2 stars
0
1 star
0

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - lamour - LibraryThing

In 1925 Detroit, Dr. Ossian Sweet bought a house in an all white neighborhood. The Ku Klux Klan as well as other white supremacists moved in and agitated their future neighbours to keep them from ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - PARB - LibraryThing

I highly recommend this book. This book held my interest from beginnning to end. It gives the reader a clear understanding of early 20th century Detroit. It was also fun to read the background of ... Read full review

Contents

AMERICA 1925
1
WHERE DEATH WAITS
13
AINT NO SLAVERY NO MORE
44
MIGRATION
70
UPLIFT ME PRIDE
102
WHITE HOUSES
133
THE LETTER OF YOUR LAW
170
FREEDMEN SONS OF GOD AMERICANS
197
THE PRODIGAL SON
229
PREJUDICE
260
JUDGMENT DAY
300
REQUIESCAM
337
NOTES
347
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
397
INDEX
403
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2007)

Kevin Boyle, a professor of history at Ohio State University, is the author of The UAW and the Heyday of American Liberalism, 1945-1968. A former associate professor at the University of Massachusetts, he is also the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the American Council of Learned Societies.
He lives in Bexley, Ohio.

Bibliographic information