We All Got History: The Memory Books of Amos Webber
by Nick Salvatore
University of Illinois Press, 2006
Paper: 978-0-252-07440-0
Library of Congress Classification E185.97.W44S25 2007
Dewey Decimal Classification 973.04960730092


Lost for over a hundred years until their rediscovery by Nick Salvatore, Amos Webber’s “Thermometer Books” recorded six decades of the daily experiences of a black freeman in nineteenth-century Philadelphia and Worcester, Massachusetts. These diaries form the basis for Salvatore’s vital portrait of an everyday hero who struggled unrelentingly for his people in a land that still considered blacks to be less than human. 

In We All Got History, we see Amos Webber working as a janitor; rescuing fugitive slaves on the Underground Railroad; marching triumphantly into Richmond with the Fifth Massachusetts Cavalry; and active in the religious and fraternal organizations that became the cement of the African American community. What emerges from this moving history is not only a picture of Webber the man, but also of the vibrant African American culture that nurtured him.

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