New York Burning: Liberty, Slavery, and Conspiracy in Eighteenth-century Manhattan

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Vintage Books, 2006 - History - 323 pages
2 Reviews
Pulitzer Prize Finalist
Anisfield-Wolf Award Winner

Over a frigid few weeks in the winter of 1741, ten fires blazed across Manhattan. With each new fire, panicked whites saw more evidence of a slave uprising. In the end, thirteen black men were burned at the stake, seventeen were hanged and more than one hundred black men and women were thrown into a dungeon beneath City Hall.

In New York Burning, Bancroft Prize-winning historian Jill Lepore recounts these dramatic events, re-creating, with path-breaking research, the nascent New York of the seventeenth century. Even then, the city was a rich mosaic of cultures, communities and colors, with slaves making up a full one-fifth of the population. Exploring the political and social climate of the times, Lepore dramatically shows how, in a city rife with state intrigue and terror, the threat of black rebellion united the white political pluralities in a frenzy of racial fear and violence.
 

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User Review  - mjgrogan - LibraryThing

Lepore offers a well-researched reconstruction of the alleged conspiracy of the 1741 arsons in New York. Is this an important book? I imagine so. Is it a “good read”? Not necessarily. Her narrative ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - theageofsilt - LibraryThing

An interesting and detailed look at a forgotten episode in American history - the execution of over 30 slaves accused in a series of arsons in New York City in 1741. Not unlike the Salem witch trials ... Read full review

Contents

PROLOGUE Tac Pat
5
CHAPTER ONE Ice
15
CHAPTER TVVO Fire
40
CHAPTER THREE Stone
64
CHAPTER FOUR Paper
93
CHAPTER FIVE Water
129
CHAPTER SIX Blood
170
CHAPTER SEVEN I 211
198
EPILOGUE Dust
221
Appendices
243
flrkrzowerg211f_r
309
Copyright

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About the author (2006)

Jill Lepore is Professor of History at Harvard University and the author of The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity, which won both the Bancroft Prize and Phi Beta Kappa's Ralph Waldo Emerson Award, as well as A is for American: Letters and Other Characters in the Newly United States. She is a contributor to The New Yorker. Lepore lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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