So in 1865, ex-Confederates formed the first Ku Klux Klan which targeted black supporters of Brownlow’s. Freedmen would suffer at the hands of the Klan by having their stuff burned and people beat. In 1873 the Supreme Court undercut the power of the Fourteen Amendment arguing that the amendment only offer few federal protections to citizens.
By the 1870’s after the civil war white politicians abandoned the cause of protecting African Americans. In the former Confederacy local governments had created a legal system set to re establish a society based on white supremacy. African American men were mainly banned from voting. Legislation known as Jim Crow laws separated people of color from whites in schools, housing, jobs, and public gathering places. Denying black men the right to vote through legal maneuvering and violence was a first step in taking away their civil rights.
The people behind the underground railroad were not always African Americans. In fact, several white families were aiding slaves in their escape because they believed that slavery should be abolished. So, we saw that for the first time in history people of color and white came together and shared the same beliefs. The goal was to reach the North because slavery was kept a very minimum there when compared with the South. This shows that the North and the South were already semi divided at the time.
Black Codes were laws created by white southerners. They were intended to restrict freed blacks’ activity and guarantee their availability as a labor force now that slavery had been abolished. In the spring of the year 1868, Andrew Johnson became the first president to be impeached. Impeachment is a process through which an official is removed from office due to unlawful activity.
Andrew Johnson, a southerner himself, believed that the blacks should have no role in the reconstruction. Between 1865 and 1867 Johnson ordered new provisional governors to establish new all white governments, that ruled similarly to the racist confederates before them. Some things did change for the former slaves as Universities and primary and secondary schools were established for them by the Freedman’s Bureau. Now the freedman’s bureau didn’t grant the slaves the one thing they wanted most, land. To the blacks, land was as essential part of truly becoming free.
The reconstruction was said to have brought a change. However, Newly free slaves faced many challenges, and whites in the south saw blacks as way less than they did before. Black codes were introduced as a way to give people of color freedom in a constitutional form. They were unique to southern states and they each had their own variation of them. It was a way to restrict the black labor force and freed people as much of slave status as possible.
In the beginning of the 1800s, most African Americans in the South were trapped in the boom of the cotton industry under slavery. Early on, slavery was considered a “necessary evil”, but in 1831 John C. Calhoun coined slavery as the popularized “positive good”. African Americans were confined in bondage and barely had a chance at freedom. The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 essentially prohibited the escape of slaves, while the decision made in Dred Scott v. Sandford practically legalized slavery everywhere in the United States. All slaves were finally freed when the 13th Amendment was passed and ratified after the Civil War.
The Emancipation Proclamation also ordered that suitable people among those freed could now be enrolled into paid service of United States ' forces, and ordered the Union Army to "recognize and maintain the freedom of" the former slaves. The Proclamation did not compensate the owners in any way, did not make slavery illegal and did not grant any citizenship to the former slaves. It only made the eradication of slavery an explicit war goal as an addition to the goal of reuniting the Union. Around 20,000 to 50,000 slaves in the southern regions where the rebellion already had been subdued were immediately emancipated. The proclamation could not be enforced in the areas still under rebellion, but when the Union Army took control of Confederate regions, The Proclamation provided the legal support framework for freeing about more than 3 million slaves in those southern regions.
Laws of segregation started in the north during the civil war (William V. Moore). Black people were segregated from railway cars, theaters, schools, prisons, and hospitals. After the 13th amendment was passed, slaves had some freedom, but then Andrew Johnson took up the presidency when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, and he was a supporter of states rights. Taking advantage of state’s rights southern states started to pass the “black codes”. Mississippi enacted the first law of the black codes.
Although Johnson opposed slavery, he did not support equal rights for African-Americans. " White men alone must manage the South," he stated. President Johnson 's plan was mostly successful because all former Confederate states except Texas had set up new governments because of his plan by the end of 1865. These newly reformed states were now ready to rejoin the
President Johnson’s plan for reconstruction was lenient to the Southerners as he admitted the southern states back into the union. The only losers in this case were the former slave owners, as Johnson punished them by taking away their land. This plan outraged the republicans in congress as the republicans planned to admit sates back into the union on account that fifty percent of the state needed to pledge loyalty to the union with the Wade-Davis Bill. The republicans also made it clear that states would not be admitted back into the union unless the former slaves were treated equally. Since Johnson was a Democrat, he ignored his republican congress and enacted his lenient plan.
Costly, Andrew. " Southern Black Codes - Constitutional Rights Foundation." Southern Black Codes - Constitutional Rights Foundation. Constitutional Rights Foundation, n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.
Very soon after Lincoln died, and his Vice President Andrew Johnson was placed into presidency. The summer of 1865, Johnson focused on another plan for reconstruction without help and opinions from Congress. When Johnson invited people to read his course of action for reconstruction, he was the laugh of the South, and many state governments began to evade the laws. Thus, created Black Codes, which gave White Southerner 's supremacy to newly freed slaves.
Ferguson or Brown v. Board of Education reached the Supreme Court, reconstruction after the Civil War ended and the ratified 14th and 15th Amendment, were needed to address the rights former slaves have. The 14th Amendment, adopted in 1870, “forbid the state and federal government from denying the right to vote based on race” (Cornell). The 15th Amendment, ratified in 1870, “stated the right to vote couldn’t be denied based on color, race or past servitude” (Cornell). Even with the new Amendments, African Americans were treated different than other Americans. When Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) cases reached the Supreme Court, the rights of the African American population took a step back.