Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory


Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory

Religion and the Politics of Race in the Civil War Era and Beyond

Steven L. Dundas

424 pages
13 photographs, 18 illustrations, index


October 2022


$36.95 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

October 2022


$36.95 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

October 2022


$36.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory is a hard-hitting history of the impact of racism and religion on the political, social, and economic development of the American nation from Jamestown to today, in particular the nefarious effects of slavery on U.S. society and history. Going back to England’s rise as a colonial power and its use of slavery in its American colonies, Steven L. Dundas examines how racism and the institution of slavery influenced the political and social structure of the United States, beginning with the writing of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Dundas tackles the debates over the Constitution’s three-fifths solution on how to count Black Americans as both property and people, the expansion of the republic and slavery, and the legislation enacted to preserve the Union, including the Missouri Compromise, the Compromise of 1850, and the Kansas-Nebraska Act—as well as their disastrous consequences.

Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory squarely faces how racism and religion influenced individual and societal debates over slavery, Manifest Destiny, secession, and civil war. Dundas deals with the struggle for abolition, emancipation, citizenship, and electoral franchise for Black Americans, and the fierce and often violent rollback following Reconstruction’s end, the civil rights movement, and the social and political implications today.

Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory is the story of perpetrators, victims, and bystanders; slaves and slaveholders; preachers, politicians, and propagandists; fire-eaters and firebrands; civil rights leaders and champions of white supremacy; and the ordinary people in the South and the North whose lives were impacted by it all.

Author Bio

Steven L. Dundas has served thirty-nine years in the U.S. Army and Navy. He is a former assistant professor at the Joint Forces Staff College, National Defense University, and a retired chaplain with the U.S. Navy. For decades Dundas has been researching and writing on history, the impact of religion on society, international affairs, military operations, and ethics.


"Dundas has written a thought-provoking book and provides a different understanding of religion, politics, and the role they played regarding racism in America."—Michael S. Griggs, Journal of Southern History

"Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory is a helpful addition to a growing renaissance of Civil War scholarship in the study of American religion."—Devin Burns, Reading Religion

“A richly documented history of the ideology of racism that manifested itself in slavery, the Confederacy, the overthrow of Reconstruction, Jim Crow, and the myth of the Lost Cause that glorified the Old South and the Confederacy.”—James M. McPherson, author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era

“Steven L. Dundas brings us a powerful history, not only of slavery but, and even more important, of the consequences of untruths and how twisted religious beliefs shaped America. All educators should read it and ensure that its message is delivered to their students.”—Joseph J. Levin Jr., cofounder and emeritus board member of the Southern Poverty Law Center

“Steven L. Dundas has written the definitive account of America’s onerous history with African Americans. A must-read to fully understand, teach, or discuss the institutions of slavery, racism, and religion and their current impacts. Every school library should have a copy.”—Lloyd V. Hackley, president and CEO of Hackley and Associates and former president of the North Carolina Community College system

Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory is a book for our time. Steven L. Dundas has skillfully woven slavery, race, racism, politics, and religion into a single entity in telling this country’s complex story. Every American would profit from reading what he is telling us.”—Charles B. Dew, author of Apostles of Disunion: Southern Secession Commissioners and the Causes of the Civil War

“With no sugar coating of America’s history of slavery and racism, Steve Dundas adds to the story of the religious ideology used to justify slavery, not as a side note but as the significant factor that it was. A very timely read as we face the growing threat of today’s Christian nationalists and white supremacists.”—Chris Rodda, author of Liars for Jesus, The Religious Right’s Alternate Version of American History, volumes 1 and 2

“American slavery’s ghosts and the Civil War haunt this sweeping interpretation of how a toxic blend of white supremacy and tribal religion still shape American society. In this historical account Steve Dundas analyzes its significance for our current social and political divisions making it an especially timely study.”—Charles Reagan Wilson, author of Baptized in Blood, the Religion of the Lost Cause: 1865–1920

“Steve Dundas’s electrifying new take on the American Civil War and its continuing presence in politics, race relations, and corrosive mythology is visceral and pulls no punches. It shows military and other readers that racism is a national security issue.”—Margaret Sankey, author of Blood Money: How Criminals, Militias, Rebels, and Warlords Finance Violence

“Steve Dundas weaves the story of slavery into the larger fabric of America. Military and social historians will welcome how he peels back the layers of some of the most overlooked and critical aspects of our collective history as never before.”—Kristopher D. White, chief historian of Emerging Civil War.com

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Preface: The First Duty
1. America’s Original Sin: Slavery from 1619 to 1790
2. A Struggle to the Death: War Cannot Be Separated from Ideology, Politics, or Religion
3. I Hate Them with Perfect Hatred: Religion, Ideology, and Modern War
4. They Shall Be Your Bond-Men Forever: Human Beings as Property
5. The Privilege of Belonging to the Superior Race: Slavery and National Expansion
6. A Gross Violation of a Sacred Pledge: Collapse of the Whig Party
7. I Will Be Heard!: Religion, Ideology, and the Abolitionist Movement
8. An Institution Sanctioned by God: Southern Religious Support of Slavery
9. The Triumphs of Christianity Rest on Slavery: Holy Warriors at the Forefront
10. With God as Our Champion: The Confederate Union of Church and State
11. They Have Closed the Heavy Doors: The Dred Scott Decision
12. Portents Hang on All the Arches of the Horizon: The Bloody Battle for Kansas
13. General Jackson Is Dead: The Lecompton Constitution Controversy
14. Cuba Must Be Ours: Fire-Eaters and Filibusters Spread Slavery
15. The Final Kingdom Has Arisen: Hubris and Fanaticism Bring On the War
16. The South Will Never Submit: Lincoln and the Choice for Secession and War
17. Whom the Gods Intend to Destroy: The Madness of Southern Extremists
18. The Heather Is On Fire: Politics, Religion, and War
19. Sound the Loud Timbrel: The Emancipation Proclamation
20. I Knew What I Was Fighting For: Black Soldiers in the Civil War and After
21. Reconstruction and Redemption: The Failure to Win the Peace
22. The Failure of Will: Reconstruction’s End and Return to White Rule
23. A New Religion: The Noble Confederacy and the Lost Cause
Epilogue: The Past Is Always Present

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