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AfriGeneas Genealogy and History Forum

The Black Russian

Barbara Williams in Memphis again.

Wanted you and AfriGeneas to know (if you do not) of the the book, The Black Russian by Vladiimir Alexandrov who teaches Russian culture and literature at Yale. Published in 2013. I'm copying one of the reviews:

"With so much focus on the black experience in America in the 19th century, we might never consider the black experience in Europe at the same time. Vladimir Alexandrov’s The Black Russian rectifies this oversight, and does so with panache. His tale is the biography of an individual who is wholly remarkable, regardless of race, and whose vitality, guile, and charm led him from Mississippi to Moscow, with plenty of adventures along the way .

Not only has the author researched the life of this son of former slaves in nearby (to Memphis) Coahoma County, Mississippi, but he has found the descendants of this man who left the US, made a fortune but lost it when Russia was taken over by the Bolsheviks; remade part of his fortune in Istanbul and is buried there. The Black Russian was Frederick Thomas, born in 1872, died in Turkey in 1928.

Most Americans do not know of Russia's history of Africans or African Americans in Russia. The author is coming to Memphis in September. If there are any genealogical groups which should know about the book, please let me know.

Most sincerely,

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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