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By Janette Thomas Greenwood

Bittersweet Legacy is the dramatic tale of the connection among generations of black and white southerners in Charlotte, North Carolina, from 1850 to 1910. Janette Greenwood describes the interactions among black and white enterprise people--the 'better classes,' as they referred to as themselves. Her e-book paints a shockingly complicated portrait of race and sophistication kin within the New South and demonstrates the influence of private relationships, generational shifts, and the interaction of neighborhood, kingdom, and nationwide occasions in shaping the responses of black and white southerners to one another and the area round them.Greenwood argues that options of race and sophistication replaced considerably within the overdue 19th century. Documenting the increase of interracial social reform pursuits within the Eighteen Eighties, she means that the 'better sessions' in short created an alternate imaginative and prescient of race family. The disintegration of the alliance because of New South politics and a generational shift in management left a bittersweet legacy for Charlotte that may weigh seriously on its electorate good into the 20 th century.

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Additional resources for Bittersweet legacy: the Black and white ''better classes'' in Charlotte, 1850-1910

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1870 59 3. Charlotte's Four Wards and Main Streets, ca. 1880 94 Page xiii ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The roots of this project are deep, and I have accrued many debts researching and writing this book. I wish to thank the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission, which, under the direction of Dr. Dan Morrill, first assigned me the task of researching Charlotte's black history in 1983. That assignment turned out to be the beginning of a long-term relationship with Charlotte's history, and I am deeply indebted to Dr.

A few streets away are two buildings practically rendered miniature by the massive First Union Tower that stands nearby. " Redevelopment forces leveled Brooklyn in the 1950s and 1960s, and its inhabitants scattered to a variety of neighborhoods in Charlotte. Charlotte's urban landscape, including the seemingly incongruous fragments of Brooklyn, is a monument to the city's "better classes" of the nineteenth century, the focus of this study. The glass skyscrapers that house banks and corporations are the legacy of ambitious merchants, businesspeople, and cotton brokers who, with the aid of railroads, built their town into a regional trading center in the 1860s and 1870s and then parlayed their wealth into cotton mills, making Charlotte the center of the Piedmont textile industry by 1900.

In the 1880s the black better class forged alliances with their white counterparts, alliances that helped define them as separate from the rest of the black community and Reconstruction-era leaders. In the 1890s whereas the white better class divided with the emergence of a manufacturing elite, the black better class found its economic opportunities circumscribed. Unlike their white counterparts, they remained economically weak, barred from the feast of New South industrial development. While Charlotte stood in the mainstream of economic and social development Page 7 in the South from 1850 to 1910, the town's residents participated in the explosive politics of the era, much of which was generated and molded by social and economic upheaval.

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