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In His Own Words: Houston Hartsfield Holloway’s Slavery, Emancipation, and Ministry in Georgia

By author: Houston Hartsfield HollowayEdited by: David E. Paterson
Product Code: H909
ISBN: 9780881465457
Product Format: Book
Availability: In stock
Price: $35.00

Houston Hartsfield Holloway (1844–1917) was born enslaved in upcountry Georgia, taught himself to read and write, learned the blacksmith trade, was emancipated by Union victory in 1865, and served as an ordained traveling preacher in the African Methodist Episcopal Church from 1870 to 1883. He devoted the remainder of his life to his family, his blacksmith trade, and his local church. Holloway’s 24,000-word autobiography offers a rare working-class perspective on life during some of the most transformative years of US history. Holloway describes slavery, his family (often fractured by slave sales), friends, religious experiences, courtship and marriage, neighborhood parties and games, work and work songs, and interactions with slave owners. His vivid account of the arrival of federal troops and his subsequent emancipation describes how he and his neighbors adjusted to freedom, constructing new family living arrangements, new employment compacts, and new civil and church relations. Holloway recounts his challenges as an itinerant AME preacher in the post-war South, his church’s onerous financial demands, his poor and uncertain pay, annual relocations, and church politics. After thirteen years of itinerant ministry Holloway quit, bought a homestead, and worked at his blacksmith trade. Writing his autobiography in his sixties, Holloway reflects on the successes and disappointments of his life and the moral and material condition of his people. Footnotes provide supplementary biographical information for nearly two hundred relatives, neighbors, friends, and coworkers named in Holloway’s narrative. An appendix includes nineteen extended biographical sketches. The book is illustrated with photographs and three detailed maps of Holloway’s home neighborhoods and preaching assignments.
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