Gregory Downs, an associate professor of history at the University of California, Davis, and Kate Masur, an associate professor of history and African American studies at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, have produced a study on the Reconstruction Era for the National Parks Service, as the service commemorates its 100th anniversary.
Professor Downs believes that there are many sites across the country relating to Reconstruction that could become part of the National Parks system. Possible sites relating to the Reconstruction period that could be include in the park system, according to Dr. Downs, are Vicksburg and Natchez in Mississippi, New Orleans, and Memphis.
“One of the things that has been rewarding to us in visiting these places is meeting the people who know the local history,” Dr. Downs said. “People have long been frustrated that events were not remembered or misremembered. We can help tell those stories.”