Madison County Public Library





African Americans and the Vote:  Madison County 1867


a new traveling exhibit developed by the Carver 4-County Museum.  The featured attractions are copies of the first voter registration lists of African American men after the Civil War.  In addition, artifacts and detail of several registrants are presented.

“The exhibit begins with an understanding of the importance of the Reconstruction Amendments:  XIII Amendment abolishes slavery, XIV Amendment bestows citizenship on formerly enslaved people, and the XVth Amendment gives all men the right to vote,” says Terry Miller, the museum’s curator.  “It ends with President Lyndon Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, an act to enforce the XVth Amendment from nearly 100 years before.”

Virginia was under military rule after the Civil War because of its refusal to accept the XIV Amendment, and thus, they were overseen by U. S. government officials that ensured men 21 years and older were registered to vote as early as 1867.  “This is an important outreach project for the Carver 4-County Museum,” says Miller.  “We are honored that the Madison County Library is making it available to local residents.”

More than 560 names appear on the combined lists from Madison’s four voting districts, all born between 1770-1846.  The display will be on view at the library through the end of February.



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