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Millions of people visit the National Mall, the White House, and the
Capitol each year. If they only hear the standard story, a big question
“Where’s the black history?”
Packed with new information and archival photos, Black Men Built the Capitol
answers this question. In this thoroughly researched yet completely
accessible volume, Washington insider and political journalist Jesse J.
Holland shines a light n the region’s
African-American achievements, recounting little-known stories and
verifying rumors, such as:
- Enslaved black men built the Capitol, White House, and
other important Washington structures.
- Philip Reid, a thirty-nine-year-old slave from South
Carolina, cast and helped save the model of the Statue of Freedom that
sits atop the Capitol Dome.
- The National Mall sits on the former site of the
city’s most bustling slave market.
- The grounds that are now Arlington National Cemetery were,
from 1863 to1888, a self-sustaining village for former slaves called
the Freedman’s Village.
Included are hundreds of places in the District of Columbia, Maryland,
and Virginia that illuminate “the rest of the
story” for Washington residents and visitors alike.
Black Men Built the Capitol
Discovering African-American History In and Around Washington, D.C.
by Jesse Holland
Globe Pequot Press
Trade Paperback, 216 pages