Ante-Bellum South/Bibliography

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A list of key readings about Ante-Bellum South.
Please sort and annotate in a user-friendly manner. For formatting, consider using automated reference wikification.


  • Aiken, Charles S. The Cotton Plantation South Since the Civil War Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998; geographical study* Anderson, David. "Down Memory Lane: Nostalgia for the Old South in Post-civil War Plantation Reminiscences." Journal of Southern History 2005 71(1): 105-136. Issn: 0022-4642 Fulltext: in Ebsco and online edition
  • Camp, Stephanie M. H. Closer to Freedom: Enslaved Women & Everyday Resistance in the Plantation South. U. of North Carolina Press, 2004. 206 pp.
  • Fox-Genovese, Elizabeth. Within the Plantation Household: Black and White Women of the Old South UNC Press, 1988 online edition
  • Genovese, Eugene, Roll, Jordan Roll (1975), the most important recent study.
  • Isaac, Rhys. Landon Carter's Uneasy Kingdom: Revolution and Rebellion on a Virginia Plantation (2004), re: late 18th century
  • Kern, Susan. "The Material World of the Jeffersons at Shadwell." William and Mary Quarterly 2005 62(2): 213-242. Issn: 0043-5597 Fulltext: at History Cooperative
  • Kulikoff
  • Lowe, Richard G. and Randolph B. Campbell, Planters and Plain Folk: Agriculture in Antebellum Texas (1987)
  • McBride, David. "'Slavery as it Is': Medicine and Slaves of the Plantation South." Magazine of History 2005 19(5): 36-39. Issn: 0882-228x Fulltext in Ebsco
  • Morgan, Edmund S. American Slavery, American Freedom: The Ordeal of Colonial Virginia (1975).
  • Phillips, Ulrich B. American Negro Slavery; a Survey of the Supply, Employment, and Control of Negro Labor, as Determined by the Plantation Regime. (1918; reprint 1966)online at Project Gutenberg
  • Phillips, Ulrich B. Life and Labor in the Old South. (1929).
  • Phillips, Ulrich B. "The Economic Cost of Slaveholding in the Cotton Belt," Political Science Quarterly 20#2 (Jun., 1905), pp. 257-275 in JSTOR
  • Phillips, Ulrich B. "The Origin and Growth of the Southern Black Belts." American Historical Review, 11 (July, 1906): 798-816. in JSTOR
  • Phillips, Ulrich B. "The Decadence of the Plantation System." Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences, 35 (January, 1910): 37-41. in JSTOR
  • Joseph P. Reidy; From Slavery to Agrarian Capitalism in the Cotton Plantation South: Central Georgia, 1800-1880 UNC Press, 1992 online edition
  • Rothman, Adam. Slave Country: American Expansion and the Origins of the Deep South (2005),
  • Ruef, Martin. "The Demise of an Organizational Form: Emancipation and Plantation Agriculture in the American South, 1860-1880." American Journal of Sociology 2004 109(6): 1365-1410. Issn: 0002-9602 Fulltext: at Ebsco
  • Savitt, Todd L. "Black Health on the Plantation: Owners, the Enslaved, and Physicians." Magazine of History 2005 19(5): 14-16. Issn: 0882-228x Fulltext in Ebsco
  • Stampp, Kenneth M. The Peculiar Institution: Slavery in the Ante-bellum South (1956)
  • Virts, Nancy. "Change in the Plantation System: American South, 1910-1945." Explorations in Economic History 2006 43(1): 153-176. Issn: 0014-4983
  • Volo, James M., and Dorothy Denneen Volo. The Antebellum Period. (2004), popular culture online edition
  • Weiner, Marli F. Mistresses and Slaves: Plantation Women in South Carolina, 1830-80. U of Illinois Press, 1998
  • White, Deborah Gray. Ar'nt I a Woman? Female Slaves in the Plantation South (1999) online edition
  • Woodman, Harold D. "The Political Economy of the New South: Retrospects and Prospects." Journal of Southern History. 67#4 2001. pp 789+. online edition, covers 1877 to 1914
  • Woodward, C. Vann. Origins of the New South, 1877-1913 (1951). classic survey of the region online at ACLS e-books
  • Wyatt-Brown, Bertram. Southern honor: ethics and behavior in the old South (1982) online at ACLS e-books

Plain Folk

  • Ash, Stephen V. "Poor Whites in the Occupied South, 1861-1865," Journal of Southern History, 57 (February 1991), JSTOR
  • Bruce Jr., Dickson D. And They All Sang Hallelujah: Plain Folk Camp Meeting Religion, 1800-1845 (1974) online edition
  • Bolton, Charles C. Poor Whites of the Antebellum South: Tenants and Laborers in Central North Carolina and Northeast Mississippi (1994) excerpt and text search
  • Burton, Orville Vernon. In My Father's House Are Many Mansions: Family and Community in Edgefield, South Carolina (1985) online edition
  • Campbell, Randolph B. "Planters and Plain Folks: The Social Structure of the Antebellum South," in John B. Boles and Evelyn Thomas Nolen, eds., Interpreting Southern History(1987), 48-77;
  • Carey, Anthony Gene. "Frank L. Owsley's Plain Folk of the Old South after Fifty Years," in Glenn Feldman, ed., Reading Southern History: Essays on Interpreters and Interpretations (2001)
  • Cash, Wilbur J. The Mind of the South (1941), famous classic excerpt and text search
  • Cecil-Fronsman, Bill. Common Whites: Class and Culture in Antebellum North Carolina (1992)
  • Hahn, Steven. The Roots of Southern Populism: Yeoman Farmers and the Transformation of the Georgia Upcountry, 1850-1890 (1983) excerpt and text search
  • Harris, J. William. Plain Folk and Gentry in a Slave Society: White Liberty and Black Slavery in Augusta's Hinterlands (1985)
  • Hyde Jr., Samuel C. "Plain Folk Reconsidered: Historiographical Ambiguity in Search of Definition." Journal of Southern History. 71#4 (2005) pp 803+.
  • Hyde Jr., Samuel C. "Plain Folk Yeomanry in the Antebellum South," in Boles, ed., Companion to the American South, 139-55.
  • Hyde Jr., Samuel C. ed., Plain Folk of the South Revisited (1997).
  • * Hyde Jr., Samuel C. "Plain Folk Reconsidered: Historiographical Ambiguity in Search of Definition" Journal of Southern History (Nov 2005) vol 71#4
  • Hundley, Daniel R. Social Relations in Our Southern States (1860; reprint 1979) complete text online
  • Linden, Fabian. "Economic Democracy in the Slave South: An Appraisal of Some Recent Views," Journal of Negro History, 31 (April 1946), 140-89; emphasizes statistical inequality in JSTOR
  • Lowe, Richard G. and Randolph B. Campbell, Planters and Plain Folk: Agriculture in Antebellum Texas (1987)
  • McCurry, Stephanie. Masters of Small Worlds: Yeoman Households, Gender Relations, and the Political Culture of the Antebellum South Carolina Low Country (1995),
  • McWhiney, Grady. Cracker Culture: Celtic Ways in the Old South (1988) online edition
  • Nobles, Gregory H. "The Transformation of the Other Virginia." Reviews in American History, Vol. 13, No. 4 (Dec., 1985), pp. 506-511 in JSTOR
  • Osthaus, Carl R. "The Work Ethic of the Plain Folk: Labor and Religion in the Old South." Journal of Southern History (2004) v. 70#4, 745-82.
  • Otto, John Solomon. "The Migration of the Southern Plain Folk: An Interdisciplinary Synthesis," Journal of Southern History, 51 (May 1985), 183-200. in JSTOR
  • Owsley, Frank Lawrence. Plain Folk of the Old South (1949), the classic study
  • Owsley, Frank Lawrence. with Harriet C. Owsley, "The Economic Basis of Society in the Late Ante-Bellum South," Journal of Southern History 6 (Feb. 1940): 24-25, in JSTOR
  • Sheehan-Dean, Aaron, Why Confederates Fought: Family and Nation in Civil War Virginia (2007) excerpt and text search
  • Wetherington, Mark V. Plain Folk's Fight: The Civil War and Reconstruction in Piney Woods Georgia. University of North Carolina Press, 2005. ISBN 978-0-8078-2963-9.
  • Winters, Donald L. "'Plain Folk' of the Old South Reexamined: Economic Democracy in Tennessee," The Journal of Southern History, Vol. 53, No. 4 (Nov., 1987), pp. 565-586 in JSTOR
  • Wright, Gavin. "'Economic Democracy' and the Concentration of Agricultural Wealth in the Cotton South, 1850-1860," Agricultural History, 44 (January 1970), 63-93 in JSTOR, a statistical critique of Owsley