Season 1, Episode 4 The Challenge of Freedom
First Aired: February 16, 2005
The conclusion covers the Civil War and Reconstruction while profiling a resourceful and courageous South Carolina slave named Robert Smalls, who learned nautical skills as a teenager. They proved useful in 1862, when he commandeered a Confederate ship and sailed it to freedom. Later, he was elected to Congress. Smalls' story was unusual, and in any case white Southerners soon crushed Reconstruction. But, says historian James Horton, it did provide blacks with “a ray of hope” for the future.
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- Premiered: February 9, 2005
- Rating: TV-PG
- Premise: This four-hour report traces the history of slavery in the U.S. and explores the economic impact of `the founding fathers you never knew,' as narrator Morgan Freeman puts it. Written and produced by Dante J. James, the executive producer of the 2003 PBS se… (more)