Alison Clark Efford

German Immigrants, Race, and Citizenship in the Civil War Era

Publications of the German Historical Institute. Cambridge University Press, 2013.

This study of Civil War–era politics explores how German immigrants influenced the rise and fall of white commitment to African-American rights. Intertwining developments in Europe and North America, Alison Clark Efford describes how the presence of naturalized citizens affected the status of former slaves and identifies 1870 as a crucial turning point. That year, the Franco-Prussian War prompted German immigrants to reevaluate the liberal nationalism underpinning African-American suffrage. Throughout the period, the newcomers’ approach to race, ethnicity, gender, and political economy shaped American citizenship law.