Join Rachelle Chase for a talk on her new book, Lost Buxton. Using rare photographs and audio clips from former residents of Buxton, Iowa, the town that Vermonter Ben Buxton built, Rachelle will discuss Ben Buxton, how vastly Buxton differed from other mining towns, and how it became the largest unincorporated town in Iowa.
ABOUT THE BOOK: Buxton, Iowa, was an unincorporated coal mining town, established by Consolidation Coal Company in 1900. At a time when Jim Crow laws and segregation kept blacks and whites separated throughout the nation, Buxton was integrated. African American and Caucasian residents lived, worked, and went to school side by side. The company provided miners with equal housing and equal pay, regardless of race, and offered opportunities for African Americans beyond mining. Professional African Americans included a bank cashier, the justice of the peace, constables, doctors, attorneys, store clerks, and teachers. Businesses, such as a meat market, a drugstore, a bakery, a music store, hotels, millinery shops, a saloon, and restaurants, were owned by African Americans. For 10 years, African Americans made up more than half of the population. Unfortunately, in the early 1920s, the mines closed, and today, only a cemetery, a few foundations, and some crumbling ruins remain.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rachelle Chase is a senior business analyst for Fortune 500 companies and a published romance author with an interest in African American history. She currently lives in Iowa. She tells the unique story of Buxton by combining quotes extracted from oral histories of Buxton residents with rare photographs from the State Historical Society of Iowa, the Monroe County Historical Society & Museum, and private collectors like John Jacobs and Michael W. Lemberger.
DATE: Thursday, August 10th at 6:30pm
LOCATION: Phoenix Books Rutland
ADMISSION: Free and open to all.