Ohio and Kentucky and especially their two leading cities—Cincinnati and Louisville—illuminate the power of racism in nineteenth-century American history. Both Cincinnati and Louisville were the sites of extraordinary racial violence in the three decades before the Civil War. Black Cincinnatians endured a number of horrific riots before 1850, and black Louisvillians suffered enslavement and lynching. In consequence, some white and black Americans began to imagine separate racial destinies. This chapter describes the colonization movements in Ohio and Kentucky while also detailing fierce black opposition to removal outside of the United States. The chapter further considers black separatism and plans for emigration from the United States in consequence of the experience of a harsh racism.
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