Poetry. African & African American Studies. On September 2, 1862, Cincinnati's mayor, fearing an imminent invasion by Confederate forces, ordered police to draft men to build forts across the Ohio River in northern Kentucky. The police forcefully rounded up three hundred free black men in the city, brought them to the riverfront and placed them in cages. The next day Federal officer William Dickson, in charge of building the fortifications, ordered the men released, informing them they could, if they wanted to, volunteer to assist in the building of the forts. The next morning more than seven hundred black men showed up. Shortly after the forts were completed, a regiment of confederate forces approached the city but, noticing how well-armed and fortified it was, swung east, avoiding all contact with the volunteer Union conscripts.
Tyrone Williams teaches literature and theory at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is the author of —C.C. (Krupskaya, 2002), ON SPEC (Omnidawn Publishing, 2008), THE HERO PROJECT OF THE CENTURY (The Backwaters Press, 2009), ADVENTURES OF PI (Dos Madres Press, 2011), HOWELL (Atelos, 2011), and BETWEEN RED & GREEN: NARRATIVE OF THE BLACK BRIGADE (Dos Madres Press, 2016). He is also the author of several chapbooks, including a prose eulogy, Pink Tie (Hooke Press, 2011).Author City: CINCINNATI, OH USA