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Year of Jubilee (1863)

Slaves, chained together in a coffle, are paraded through the streets of Washington D.C. on their way to the slave market. Detail from a larger print in the Library of Congress.

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Now Available

The Year of Jubilee

Vol. 1: Men of God and Vol. 2: Men of Muscle

by George Nagle

  Both volumes of the Afrolumens book are now

available at the Mid-Town Scholar Bookstore
1302 N. Third Street, Harrisburg,
and at Civil War and More Books

or at for $29.95 each

The Year of Jubilee is the story of Harrisburg'g free African American community, from the era of colonialism and slavery to hard-won freedom.

Volume One, Men of God, covers the turbulent beginnings of this community, from Hercules and the first slaves, the growth of slavery in central Pennsylvania, the Harrisburg area slave plantations, early runaway slaves, to the birth of a free black community. Men of God is a detailed history of Harrisburg's first black entrepreneurs, the early black churches, the first black neighborhoods, and the maturing of the social institutions that supported this vibrant community.

It includes an extensive examination of state and federal laws governing slave ownership and the recovery of runaway slaves, the growth of the colonization movement, anti-colonization efforts, anti-slavery, abolitionism and radical abolitionism. It concludes with the complex relationship between Harrisburg's black and white abolitionists, and details the efforts and activities of each group as they worked separately at first, then learned to cooperate in fighting against slavery. More here

Non-fiction, history. 607 pages, softcover.

Volume Two, Men of Muscle takes the story from 1850 and the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, through the explosive 1850s to the coming of Civil War to central Pennsylvania. In this volume, Harrisburg's African American community weathers kidnappings, raids, riots, plots, murders, intimidation, and the coming of war. Caught between hostile Union soldiers and deadly Confederate soldiers, they ultimately had to choose between fleeing or fighting. This is the story of that choice.

Non-fiction, history. 630 pages, softcover.

Volume One and Two Available now at

The Mid-Town Scholar, Civil War and More,
or at



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