392 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 29 halftones, 7 maps, appends., notes, bibl., index
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4696-2657-4
Published: August 2015
eBook ISBN: 978-1-4696-0876-1
Published: November 2013
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Awards & distinctions
2014 Gertrude S. Carraway Award of Merit, Preservation North Carolina
2014 Book Award, Southeastern Society of Architectural Historians
Drawing upon myriad sources, Bishir brings to life men and women who employed their trade skills, sense of purpose, and community relationships to work for liberty and self-sufficiency, to establish and protect their families, and to assume leadership in churches and associations and in New Bern’s dynamic political life during and after the Civil War. Focusing on their words and actions, Crafting Lives provides a new understanding of urban southern black artisans’ unique place in the larger picture of American artisan identity.
About the Author
Catherine W. Bishir is curator of Architectural Records Special Collections at North Carolina State University Libraries. She is author or co-author of six books, including North Carolina Architecture.
For more information about Catherine W. Bishir, visit the Author Page.
“Bishir sheds light on how African American artisans were affected by changing race relations, how they exercised agency, and most importantly how they crafted identities as artisans and citizens. Scholars interested in these subjects and the history of North Carolina will appreciate Bishir’s fine book.”--Journal of American History
“Pays tribute to this . . . part of African-American life that . . . is seldom told.”--Durham Herald-Sun
"Catherine Bishir's latest work is a must-read for students and researchers of the U.S. South."--Journal of African American History
"This work will appeal to a broad audience of scholars interested in southern labor history, the extended narrative of black life in the South, and the role of artisan workers in the larger shaping of American work and culture in the long nineteenth century."--Journal of Southern History
“Bishir’s immensely readable, entertaining new book is a welcome contribution to the literature and a first-rate reconstruction of the obscure world of New Bern’s nineteenth-century artisans of color.”--The North Carolina Historical Review
“A compelling story of African American urban artisans working in New Bern, North Carolina, from the colonial period up to the beginning of the twentieth century. . . . A major contribution to urban artisan knowledge in the United States.”--Journal of the North Carolina Association of Historians