Prof. Michael Thompson‘s book, Working on the Dock of the Bay: Labor and Enterprise in an Antebellum Southern Port, published by the University of South Carolina Press in 2015, is now available in paperback.
The book has continued to receive praise from top scholars in the field:
“[Thompson] provides fresh insights into class and race relations in the city, and contributes much-needed context for the better-documented labor history of southern dock workers in later periods.”—Journal of American History
“The topics Thompson addresses are both fresh and significant, and the research upon which this study is built is impeccable. . . . Working on the Dock of the Bay is a superb piece of labor history that engages with many kinds of history and is likely to stand as a landmark for some time to come.”—Labor: Studies in Working-Class History
“. . . Thompson provides a valuable and praiseworthy scholarly contribution that should be read by anyone interested in the history of slavery, African Americans, labor, and the South.”—Journal of American Ethnic History
“Thompson’s portrait of a racial waterfront in flux offers a thick description of everyday life and labor, as well as some astute insights as to how boundaries—white and black, free and enslaved, sick and healthy—crosscut the wharves along the Cooper and Ashley rivers.”—American Historical Review
“. . . Working on the Dock of the Bay comes highly recommended. It is an unusually clear and well-written work of social history, based on impressive research, and makes an important contribution to our understanding of the antebellum urban South.”—H-Slavery
“In terms of sheer amount of research done, it would be hard to better Michael D. Thompson. . . . What emerges is [a] portrait of the antebellum Charleston working class in all its complexity and contingency.”—Journal of Southern History