CBC – Forward, then backward. It’s a recurring pattern in the history of African-Americans’ fight for equality — moments of progress, followed by heartbreak.

That historical struggle is chronicled in the sweeping tome Before the Mayflower: A History of Black America.

The book recounts the celebration now known as Juneteenth: in 1865, as word spread across southern plantations that slavery had ended, a chain of “emotional bombs” exploded, one after another, with one witness comparing the experience to walking on golden clouds.

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