It is common to see proud Dixians in this movement of all ages and backgrounds reminisce about the antebellum period. We love to discuss the founding myths of our people’s struggles and heroism during the War of Northern Aggression and the Reconstruction Era. We often contemplate our future in this time of intense anti-Southern genocidal hatred as well as the hopelessness of our cause in a post-Jim Crow Dixie where we have practically no power. While these events have been crucial in the formation of Southern Identity, the Jim Crow era, which lasted from about 1877-1968, is often overlooked when it comes to the contributions it made to our identity and is often viewed as merely a period of staving off the coming destruction.
Jim Crow lasted for 91 years and much of the history of that time is often overlooked. We like to view the highlights, but don’t often dig a little deeper. One could argue from a Southern Nationalist perspective that the South was better off during that time than during any other period of its history. This history is best observed by viewing Dixie in the various separate eras that occurred during that time.
The first major era of American history following the end of Reconstruction was the Gilded Age. It lasted from the Compromise of 1877 to the turn of the century. The most significant aspect of this period is the beginning of the long reign of Jim Crow laws in the South, as well as, the re-introduction of anti-miscegenation laws that had been removed during Union occupation, much of which had been enacted to ensure the safety of whites in black dominated areas. Mississippi was one such state where blacks were a majority of the population. Blacks in these areas tended to act aggressively and Jim Crow was in part a response to that.
Extreme poverty was rampant at the time, with the primary form of self-sustainment and employment coming from sharecropping and tenant farming. This did little more than provide for farmers and their families with food and water and often left many of them in dept to the landlords and owners of the farms. Crop prices had fallen drastically since the end of the War of Northern Aggression leaving the rural agrarian South in a constant state of poverty with very little money in circulation in the South’s economy. Most infrastructure was nothing more than scattered towns with very few cities.
Fortunately, not everything about this time period was so grim. Dixians had managed to gain real political power and a firm vision on their future through the constant fighting and struggle of the War and the brutal occupation that followed it. This was only the beginning of that new era. In its state of adverse poverty, the South remained largely untouched by and heavily isolated from the rapid urban explosion and sprouting leftist thought that began to take root during the Gilded Age and future periods.
The Progressive Era lasted from 1890-1920. This era brought into existence the mass production and placement of Confederate monuments in Southern cities. The Daughters of the Confederacy began contributing to their cities’ already beautiful culture and architecture by placing many of them in major city centers. Southern pride had found a newer, more positive meaning with the purpose of preserving Southern history, genetic existence and identity. Confederate, aka “Rebel”, flags began to see modern usage in the public during memorial events, as well as, beginning the typical usage it sees today as a means of Southern pride. Also, on a socio-cultural level, Jim Crow laws began to see much more extensive legalization. They became much harsher and removed any remaining political power that blacks still had, while solidifying the absolute control Dixians had over their own existence and future.
The economy improved a little in the Deep South, but it was the peripheral South that experienced the most growth. Texas particularly experienced the most development and industrialization, largely thanks to the rapid expansion of the railroad, putting it ahead of the rest of Dixie. As a result, it also experienced more workers’ strikes and labor reforms than other areas. Much of this prosperity may not have extended to the poorer Deep South, but it did continue to grow and expand into the Roaring 20s, albeit at a slower pace than the rest of the country.
The prosperity of the Roaring Twenties left the Deep South and parts of Appalachia largely untouched, a common characteristic of the region’s history. However, larger Southern cities including Memphis, TN; Atlanta, GA; Dallas, TX; and Houston, TX were experiencing industrialization and growth which resulted in large numbers of people moving to those areas. Despite this rapid urban growth in some of the more populated cities, much of Dixie remained unchanged. Unfortunately, this urban expansion did bring with it many issues that the South, as well as all of America, had to face. One such method of addressing these issues was through Southern literature.
The most significant philosophical and literary contribution to the South up to that time was the Southern Renaissance. It was a major step away from the Southern Romanticism of the post-war period and began to view the South in a more analytical way. Writers of this movement often addressed the rapid urban expansion of the time and questioned how the South would maintain her identity and place in the world. Others would critique the South from a more liberal perspective. Some of the most significant contributors to pro-Southern philosophical and political thought of the Southern Renaissance, the Southern Agrarians, based at the Vanderbilt University, wrote the Southern Agrarian manifesto I’ll Take My Stand: The South and the Agrarian Tradition. A major and lasting influence on Southern Nationalism, this collection of essays defined the historical existence of Southern culture and brought into question the future of Dixie in a rapidly urbanizing and liberalizing society. While the 20s had introduced prosperity to parts of Dixie and introduced a new form of Southern thinking and writing, much of that came to a halt in the following decade.
Because of the already downtrodden and rural state of Dixie, the Great Depression had a much smaller impact on the South than the rest of the country. However, this does not mean it was untouched. Many jobs had been lost in the cities, forcing many into joblessness. Texas and Arkansas experienced particular hardship because of the Dust Bowl, forcing many to leave those states.
Despite the major economic hardship, the South maintained its character and the Southern Renaissance continued. The Southern Agrarians released their seminal work in 1930, and writers such as William Faulkner wrote many great works during this time. Despite the long history of strong identity and a solid political bloc, Dixie found a new threat to its existence in the coming years at the outset of World War II.
World War II sparked the beginning of the end of Jim Crow and Southerners’ control over their own home. During the war, many blacks at home began protesting and holding demonstrations which ultimately concluded with the cowardly passing of the Fair Employment Act of the FDR administration. This was done while Southern men were off fighting the war. An interesting side note about these Southern men was that many of them flew the Rebel flag while oversees, bringing the Southern Cross into the mainstream spotlight as a result.
The next and most devastating stage in the North’s genocidal war against Dixie had finally come in the form of the Civil Rights Era. While its roots can be traced to the FDR administration, the first president to really kick it off was Truman. He began buying into the propaganda of the day and campaigned on civil rights, betraying his Southern brothers and condemning them for racism.
The Southern Democrats reacted negatively to this. As a result in 1948, a convention of Southern political figures came together to form the States’ Rights Democratic Party, aka the Dixiecrats, electing South Carolina governor Strom Thurmond as their presidential candidate. Unfortunately, the only states they won were Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina and one electoral vote in Tennessee. This was caused by the other Southern governors and leaders not wanting to lose in the gubernatorial elections by challenging party loyalty, a trait of the South that consistently prevents it from making real nationalistic progress.
Despite all of this, the first true piece of anti-segregation legislation came in the form of Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, which kicked off the Civil Rights era and dealt a major blow to the South. This period in time was constantly marked by street riots nationwide and violence that typically resulted in white Southerners having the military point bayonets at them while blacks rioted in the streets. All the many black “heroes” became well known at this time with the most prominent being Martin Luther King, Jr. Eventually, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 came which removed freedom of association in the workplace and public and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which removed Southern control over its governments by giving non-whites voting rights. In conjunction with this, the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1965 was passed with the Anglo-Celtic South being the only region of the country to oppose it. The Supreme Court case Loving v. Virginia overturned anti-miscegenation laws. Lastly, the Civil Rights Act of 1968 was passed which overturned freedom of association in community building, the last stronghold of Jim Crow in Dixie.
With that, the Jim Crow-era had finally come to an end and the South has suffered ever since. It’s been flooded with third world immigrants, its streets have been taken over by hostile non-whites, the churches that once supported Dixians’ rights to rule and govern themselves have abandoned them to virtue signal for brownie points and carpetbaggers from all over the country have been flooding here in a tidal wave for the past twenty years. It’s a genocide, plain and simple. A last ditch attempt to prevent this from happening came in the form of Alabama governor George Wallace’s presidential campaign. He was doing very well in the Democratic primaries and may have won, possibly saving us from this fate, but was shot on May 15, 1972 by Arthur Bremer, ending his political career and destroying his health. Not a single Southern politician has successfully managed to stand up for us and win a major campaign since.
The Jim Crow-era was Dixie’s golden years. Throughout its 91 year existence, Dixians had real political power designed to support their own interests, their own home and place among the nations. We had a defined and recognizable culture, and an identity stronger than any other point in our history. Because of the lack of economic opportunity, underdeveloped infrastructure, a difficult geography, hostility towards outsiders and legal system designed to empower white Southrons, Dixie managed to avoid most of the leftist ideologies permeating in northern and western cities. We remained isolated enough to maintain a largely untouched Anglo-Celtic demographic makeup and strong unifying identity. It was something more real than anything the non-Southerners had and still have to this day. All of this was accomplished following a devastating war and harsh military occupation.
The odds we face today are just as grim as what our ancestors faced then, only we have less time than they did. While we may see nothing more than black pills on a daily basis, the odds we face today are no more grim than the odds our people faced during Reconstruction, and they still won. We can succeed and establish rule over our homeland once again to ultimately save our people, but we must play our cards right. It’s not too late to establish a Second Golden Age of Dixie.
Oh, I'm a good old Rebel, now that's just what I am; For this "Fair Land of Freedom" I do not give a damn! I'm glad I fit against it, I only wish we'd won, And I don't want no pardon for anything I done.