History: Teach Your Children Well

Rule #1: Winners’ Narrative is Historical Fact

History written by winners.

ONE NOTABLE EXCEPTION: Confederate Americans and their descendants get to tell their own story. Myths about benign slavery and the Great Lost Cause have endured for centuries; it is how the losers have won. Sometimes these folktales were injected into the public school curriculum. 

The Simms History of South Carolina

Myths of White Supremacy and the benign nature of slavery have permeated the American Imagination since 1619. In 1932, South Carolina historian Mary Simms Oliphant penned The Simms History of South Carolina, which went through nine editions. It was the narrative with which children in the Palmetto State were indoctrinated until well into the 1960s.

The following excerpts from that primer are shocking for their unapologetic affirmation of the doctrines that justified the peculiar institution and its successor, the social and legal codes known as Jim Crow. It was the literary equivalent of a Confederate monument.

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