The Senator and the Socialite

The Senator and the Socialite : The True Story of America's First Black Dynasty

3.93 (157 ratings by Goodreads)

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Description

Blanche Kelso Bruce was born a slave in 1841, yet, remarkably, amassed a real-estate fortune and became the first black man to serve a full term in the U.S. Senate. He married Josephine Willson--the daughter of a wealthy black Philadelphia doctor--and together they broke down racial barriers in 1880s Washington, D.C., numbering President Ulysses S. Grant among their influential friends. The Bruce family achieved a level of wealth and power unheard of for people of color in nineteenth-century America. Yet later generations would stray from the proud Bruce legacy, stumbling into scandal and tragedy.

Drawing on Senate records, historical documents, and personal letters, author Lawrence Otis Graham weaves a riveting social history that offers a fascinating look at race, politics, and class in America.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 455 pages
  • 135 x 203 x 25mm | 408g
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • Illustrations, black and white
  • 0060985135
  • 9780060985134

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Review quote

"Excellent history of slavery, Reconstruction, post-Reconstruction, late 19th century politics and the misunderstood differences between early Republicans and Democrats."--San Francisco Chronicle
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Rating details

157 ratings
3.93 out of 5 stars
5 33% (52)
4 38% (59)
3 21% (33)
2 6% (10)
1 2% (3)
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