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Alden Scholar Series

Dr. E. Howard Ashford (October 2023)

                                                           The Struggle for Liberation in Attala County,1865-1915

                                                                        Dr. E. Howard Ashford, Department of History 

About the Lecture

Dr. E. Howard Ashford from the History department will use his family photographs to explore the post-Civil War experiences of African Americans in Attala County. The discussion will focus on their impact on economic and social politics as a non-majority racial group. The book, Mississippi Zion: The Struggle for Liberation in Attala County, 1865-1915 challenges the traditional historical perspective on African Americans in Mississippi. Rather than attributing their empowerment solely to periods of federal aid, the book breaks away from this notion and redefines the post-slavery era as a liberation era. It explores how African Americans actively sought land, labor, education, political engagement, community building, and progressive race relations to establish themselves as equals in society. 

Ashford, E. H. (2022). Mississippi Zion : the struggle for liberation in Attala County, 1865-1915. University Press of Mississippi.

About Dr. Ashford

Dr. Ashford earned his Ph.D. in Afro-American Studies from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Additionally, he obtained an M.A. in Afro-American Studies from the University of Massachusetts, a second M.A. in History from Jackson State University, a first M.A. in Public Policy and Administration from Mississippi State University, and a B.S. in Accounting from Mississippi State University. His book, Mississippi Zion: The Struggle for Liberation in Attala County, 1865-1915, was published in 2022 and won the Mississippi Historical Society Book of the Year Award and the CLR James Award for Outstanding Scholarly Publication in Africana Studies. Dr. Ashford teaches courses in modern and African American history. 




exhibit of books and awards in a display case]exhibit of photographs and books in a display case