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Jim Crow

Jim Crow

Thomas Dixon, Jr. in Jim Crow

Thomas Dixon, Jr. (1864-1946) was a North Carolina Baptist minister, a statesman, a playwright, and an author best known for his "Trilogy of Reconstruction." The series of best-selling novels romanticized the antebellum South and portrayed Radical Reconstruction as a chaotic period in which unscrupulous freed slaves and their northern white accomplices rode roughshod over southern white society, destroying political, social, and cultural institutions.

In 1905, Dixon published the second novel in his Reconstruction trilogy, The Clansman: An Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan. Dixon wrote it "to teach the North, the young North, what it has never known—the awful suffering of the white man during the dreadful Reconstruction period. I believe that Almighty God anointed the white men of the South by their suffering during that time immediately after the Civil War to demonstrate to the world that the white man must and shall be supreme." Ten years later, director D. W. Griffith adapted the bestseller for his grandiose film, Birth of a Nation, which became a national box-office hit and led to a real-life resurgence of the KKK throughout the United States.

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