Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65
In Pillar of Fire, the second volume of his America in the King Years trilogy, Taylor Branch portrays the civil rights era at its zenith. The first volume, Parting the Waters, won the Pulitzer Prize for History. Pillar of Fire covers the far-flung upheavals of the years 1963 to 1965 - Dallas, St. Augustine, Mississippi Freedom Summer, LBJ's Great Society and the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Vietnam, Selma. And it provides a frank, revealing portrait of Martin Luther King, Jr. - haunted by blackmail, factionalism, and hatred while he tried to hold the nonviolent movement together as a dramatic force in history. Allies, rivals, and opponents addressed racial issues that went deeper than fair treatment at bus stops or lunch counters. Participants on all sides stretched themselves and their country to the breaking point over the meaning of simple words: dignity, equal votes, equal souls. Branch brings to bear fifteen years of research - archival investigation; nearly two thousand interviews; new primary sources, from FBI wiretaps to White House telephone recordings - in a seminal work of history.
Simon & Schuster
2008 Lifetime Achievement Award
Arts and Humanities | Creative Writing | History | Nonfiction
Branch , T. (1998). Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.