Brown Bag Luncheon Program by Dr. J. Michael Rhyne

URBANA, Ohio (February 1, 2012) – The Urbana University College of Social and Behavioral Sciences invites the public to an Urbana University Brown Luncheon for a program entitled, "Slavery, Abolitionism, and Civil War in the Ohio Valley” by Dr. J. Michael Rhyne, assistant professor of history. This program is on Wednesday, February 8, 2012 from noon- 1 p.m. in the Moore Conference room, the lower level of the Student Center. Attendees may bring a lunch or purchase items at the White Family Grill on the main level of the Student Center. The Ohio Valley had been a battleground over the fate of slavery for decades prior to the Civil War. With the slave state of Kentucky on one side of the river and the free states of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois on the other, the myth arose that the Ohio was a kind of “River Jordan” for runaways. The reality was more complex, with many residents of free states supporting the institution of slavery and sometimes actively working to apprehend runaways. Still, some residents of the free states took great risks and even openly defied the law in their efforts to help secure freedom for slaves. The newspaper editors, and others, openly spoke out against slavery and called for its abolition; so did some brave Kentuckians. Cassius Marcellus Clay, for example, helped the Rev. John G. Fees establish the racially integrated community and College of Berea, and he published anti-slavery editorials in his newspaper. As tensions mounted over the future of slavery in the territories, Kentuckians became less tolerant of anti-slavery in their midst. Dr. Rhyne, a graduate of the University of Cincinnati, is a specialist in 19th century history of America. At Northern Kentucky University, he taught the History of Kentucky for several years before joining the faculty at Urbana University in 2009. He has long been fascinated about the many ways in which slaves in the United States sought to both resist slavery and to liberate themselves when the time arose. He has published several articles relating to his research on the Civil War era in Kentucky and is under contract with Southern Illinois University Press to publish a book, tentatively title, “Terror is at Hand”: Race, Violence, and the Law in Post-Emancipation Kentucky. This program is the fourth in a series of monthly Brown Bag Lunches sponsored by the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. The next program is on Wednesday, March 21, 2012. More information will be forthcoming prior to each program.

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