Nicholas Lemann begins his book “Redemption: The Last Battle of the Civil War” with the 1873 Colfax, Louisiana massacre where a White League militia comprised of former Confederate soldiers killed black Republican voters. The Colfax massacre was perhaps the bloodiest event of Reconstruction. Lemann views this event as a startup of what would happen later in Mississippi if Federal troops did not defend black voters. Lemann blames Ulysses S. Grant’s Secretary of War, William W. Belknap, for not stopping the White Line activity in Louisiana and Mississippi. Grant had worked hard to stop the Ku Klux Klan in the early 1870s with Congress passing legislation and Federal troops putting down Klan activity. The white militias of the 1870s, established
Resistance to Reconstruction was incredibly aggressive and violent since Southerners were extremely appalled by the radical social transformations that were resulting from Reconstruction, so those Southerners terrorized and killed the Republicans and the black people responsible for the changes. Black people were supposedly guaranteed equality before the law by the 14th amendment, however, their rights were not always upheld. Southerners would kill black people over minor actions, like not yielding to whites on sidewalks or attempting to buy land. A terrorist organization, the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), formed in 1866 to punish people who “defied the norms of white supremacy”. Ordinary black people were killed by the KKK alongside black and white
What were the goals of Reconstruction? Why weren 't all of these goals achieved? Was Reconstruction a failure? Support your answers with details and examples.
The American Civil War that was started due to the controversy over slavery in 1861, was won by The Union supported by President Lincoln against the Confederate states. President Lincoln’s original goal during the civil war was to reunify the nation as quickly as possible and help both sides come to an understanding. After the Civil War ended in 1865, the newly formed United States’ reconstruction era began. The Reconstruction era was put into effect by the Congress in 1866 and lasted until 1877. The Union’s victory in the Civil War had given African Americans a new sense of hope, devastated the southern economy, and eased the history of disunity in American political life. Reconstruction was a program used to help the south rebuild and join
Reconstruction among the south refers to the point in time which the United States was attempting to establish a relationship between the union and the rebels. The Union had won the civil war, so the next step was to begin to mend the broken relationship between the north and the south. Though historians cannot agree on when it began, there is merit in saying that it started before the end of the Civil War. After victory, had been solidified for the Union, attention of President Lincoln turned towards reconstruction.
During the Reconstruction era, the idea of freedom could have many different meanings. Everyday factors that we don't often think about today such as the color of our skin, where we were born, and whether or not we own land determined what limitations were placed on the ability to live our life to the fullest. To dig deeper into what freedom meant for different individuals during this time period, I analyzed three primary sources written by those who experienced this first hand. These included “Excerpts from The Black Codes of Mississippi” (1865), “Jourdan Anderson to his old master” (1865), and “Testimony on the Ku Klux Klan in Congressional Hearing” (1872). The ability to have absolute freedom is a common theme in these three documents. Freedom means more than just having the independence to make your own decisions and pursuing your own happiness. The hopes of Reconstruction were to create
The Civil War allowed the United States to make the changes necessary to unify the country. In addition, it began one of the most transitional periods in the United States’ history. This period, the Reconstruction, brought about many political, social, and economic changes, which were both beneficial and disagreeable. The 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments, the Panic of 1873, and the formation of the Ku Klux Klan are just a few examples of heavily impacting events for the United States.
There were three main Republican leaders. They consisted of Thaddeus Stevens, Charles Sumner, and the president that took over Lincoln, Andrew Johnson. These men were known as the Radical Republicans, and their nickname was the Radicals. After Lincoln’s death, the Radicals had two tasks they wanted to take effect. First, they blamed the south for causing the Civil War that ended prior. Secondly, they wanted to help the slaves because they felt they needed protection. His main concern was to make an economic opportunity for the slaves. He wanted them to make a living on their own and not depend of the “whites” as they have been used to. Then there was Charles Sumner, thinking on the same lines as Stevens. According to www.history.com/topics/charles-sumner ”He saw Reconstruction as the opportunity to establish civil rights for blacks, first in the South where Congress had explicit authority and gradually in the North. In 1865 he insisted that suffrage be granted to all black males. At the time of his death, Sumner was still vainly agitating for federal legislation repealing all discriminatory laws.” Finally, there was President Andrew Johnson. After Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, just as the South surrendered in April 1865, and then Andrew Johnson inherited the problem of Reconstruction. Johnson supported Lincoln's plan after
The Reconstruction period lasted from 1865 to 1877. The thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth amendment were created during the twelve years of rebuilding the country. All of the amendments were made to protect former slaves and their rights but on paper they did not have any rights. The reconstruction period had its successes and failures.
The Reconstruction Era occurred in 1865, it was was a period after the Civil War in which America was focused on rebuilding the broken South. In 1867, the Radical reconstruction gave former slaves a voice in government. During this era, formers slaves gained a platform in the government, with some blacks as Congressmen. However, not everyone supported the idea of Reconstruction. Less than a decade after the Reconstruction period, a small group composed of democratic ex-confederate veterans, white farmers and white southerners sympathetic to white supremacy joined forces together to form the Ku Klux Klan. The clan spread fear and terror towards the blacks in a systematic way. Their reign of terror was felt throughout the south. It spread fear using guerilla tactics, whipping, beating, and lynching. The Klan’s purpose
But, when these officials were elected to Congress, they passed the “black codes” and thus the relations between the president and legislators became worst (Schriefer, Sivell and Arch R1). These so called “Black Codes” were “a series of laws to deprive blacks of their constitutional rights” that they were enacted mainly by Deep South legislatures. Black Codes differ from a state to another but they were stricter in the Deep South as they were sometimes irrationally austere. (Hazen 30) Furthermore, with the emergence of organizations such as the Red Shirts and the White League with the rise of the Conservative White Democrats’ power, efforts to prevent Black Americans from voting were escalating (Watts 247), even if the Fifteenth Amendment to the U.S constitution that gave the Blacks the right to vote had been ratified in 1870. Former slaves who “tried to vote or participate in politics [were] likely to be singled out for “punishment”” by a terrorist organization named as the Ku Klux Klan, until the Congress passed the Force Bill in 1871 that gave the federal authorities the right to arrest and pursue active members of the KKK. But, the bill appeared to be only figurative as not really much of the Klan’s members were prosecuted (Hazen
The Civil War was the most destructive battle in American history. The hurricane of a battle lasted for four years and is responsible for 785,000-1,000,000 Union, Confederate, and slave casualties. The battle was fought for the overall emancipation of slaves, and the Union succeeded in fulfilling that goal. You would think that after that war and after slavery was abolished once and for all, everyone would be happy and everyone would join together and sing Kumbaya; however, that's not exactly what happened. The Reconstruction Era was more destructive for slaves than the war itself. After the war, freed slaves were denied the right to vote, they were not provided with jobs or a safe place to go once they were free, and there were groups of people
Reconstruction era, which was followed by post-civil war, was meant to unite the states back together, reconstruct properties, and most importantly, abolish slavery in the South. Although the factors such as amendments legally freed former slaves, yet
Looking these ruins that still lay here, I just sigh with disbelief. In 1876, after winning the war, America was on a complete roll. Many stuff were being established such as railroads, buildings, and etc.. America seemed so full of happiness. America even created opportunities so that every American would pursue their dreams (Background Essay,Para.1). I bet the other countries, also, were astonished of how quickly we were growing. It all seemed we were gonna always be a “happy” country. Then something devastating happened, the election of 1876. (Background Essay,Para.1). That officially destroyed million of black Americans, who lived
While the issue of slavery evidently contributed to the divide that resulted in the American Civil War, it is debated whether prevailing ideals of racism caused the failure of the era following the war known as Reconstruction. With the abolishment of slavery, many of the southern states had to reassemble the social, economic, and political systems instilled in their societies. The Reconstruction Era was originally led by a radical republican government that pushed to raise taxes, establish coalition governments, and deprive former confederates of superiority they might have once held. However, during this time common views were obtained that the South could recover independently and that African Americans