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Volunteer Voices Project

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Volunteer Voices: The Growth of Democracy in Tennessee

Volunteer Voices is a state-wide digitization project that will provide access to primary sources that document Tennessee's rich history and culture. Volunteer Voices combines the collaborative efforts to Tennessee archives, historical societies, libraries, museums, and schools.

Thematic and historical eras covered by Volunteer Voices include Frontier migration, representative democracy, Native Americans; Jacksonian democracy, Tennessee’s role in the early republic; Anti-democratic impulses: Slavery, African Americans, the removal of Native Americans; Debate over slavery, Secession and the Civil War, Tennessee as a border state; Reconstruction, the lives of the freedmen, the establishment of sharecropping; Taxation and the narrowing of the franchise through "Jim Crow" laws and poll taxes; Utopian Impulses of the 19th century such as Nashoa, Ruskin, and Rugby; New South period and the Industrialization of Tennessee; Women's suffrage and Tennessee's pivotal role in passage of 19th amendment; Machine Politics, EH Crump, and Prohibition; Scopes Trial, rise of fundamentalism, and public education; Tennessee Valley Authority and "grass roots democracy"; Oak Ridge and the WWII effort in Tennessee; Civil rights movement in Tennessee; Modern times in Tennessee.