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May 13, 2009

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OMG. That has totally made my day. Jourdan was one damned smart guy. I wonder what became of his descendents?

Wow- where did you find this?

This weekend I switched gears from the book on Panama Canal to a case on the Areva nuclear power company, so it was office-cleaning time. I came across an ancient book that I've had kicking around since college. (Given how much I've moved, I'm a bit astounded. It was at the bottom of a box of photocopied railroad annual reports.) The book is by Leon Litwack, Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery. The letter was on page 333.

I'll post a photocopy of the reprint in the New York Tribune: the original appeared in an Ohio newspaper. I don't know if it was actually sent; a Jourdon Anderson is in fact buried in the Woodland Cemetary in Dayton.

The letter was great, and I desperately, desperately hope that it was indeed mailed. That is the most awesome polite delivery of a middle finger that I have ever seen.

With respect to folks who fly flags like that seen in the picture, I think that it's a great sign of hope that these days they swear up and down that the war wasn't about slavery. It means that even the defenders of the Lost Cause have to in public acknowledge that slavery (and to a lesser extent keeping black people as a servant class) was not a thing worth fighting for. Which means that a final hearts and minds victory a century and a half later might be closer than we think.

Hah! Very cool. The "Say howdy to George Carter" line is the kicker.

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