Posted by: W. E. Poplaski | October 30, 2008

Weekly Read-Along—October 31, 2008: The Disfranchisement of the Negro

Material for the Stout-Hearted Reader to Ruminate

♦ Essays, Lectures & Speeches ♦



Charles W. Chesnutt (1858 – 1932) was an African American author from Cleveland, Ohio.  He was a staunch civil rights activist; his contemporaries included W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington.  


This week’s essay is The Disfranchisement of the Negro.  First published in 1903, it describes how African Americans lost the right to vote even though it had been guaranteed by the Constitution for thirty-five years.



  • suffrage:  the right to vote.
  • disfranchisement (disenfranchisement): to deprive of a right, especially to vote; revokation of suffrage.
  • fourteenth amendment (1868):  intended to secure the rights of former slaves requiring equal protection under the law for all persons.
  • fifteenth amendment (1870):  prohibits preventing a person from voting based on that person’s race.


Join others in this weekly reading event!  You can find the text at these websites:

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