Nate Shaw’s father was born under slavery. Nate Shaw was born into a bondage that was only a little gentler. At the age of nine, he was picking cotton for thirty-five cents an hour. At the age of forty-seven, he faced down a crowd of white deputies who had come to confiscate a neighbor’s crop. His defiance cost him twelve years in prison. This triumphant autobiography, assembled from the eighty-four-year-old Shaw’s oral reminiscences, is the plain-spoken story of an "over-average" man who witnessed wrenching changes in the lives of Southern black people — and whose unassuming courage helped bring those changes about.
About Theodore Rosengarten
Theodore Rosengarten is an independent historian whose work focuses on the lives of slaves and freedmen in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He is the author of Tombee: Portrait of a Cotton Planter and editor of A Portion of People:… More about Theodore Rosengarten
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Published by Knopf Jun 05, 2013| 560 Pages| ISBN 9780307831910
"There are only a few American autobiographies of surpassing greatness….Now there is another one, Nate Shaw’s." — The New York Times
"Extraordinarily rich and compelling…possesses the same luminous power we associate with Faulkner…the same marvelous idiom, the same wry, sardonic humor…[it] will stun the listener-reader, hold him in its grip, and never really quite let go of him? — Washington Post
"Eloquent and revelatory. When, finally, this big book is put down, one feels exhilarated. This is an anthem to human endurance." — Studs Terkel, New Republic