The developments that occured in the United States of America during the Civil War and Reconstruction Era were arguably revolutionary. During these years of 1860 to 1877, not only did social change take place, but also constitutional change. By the end of the Civil War, many aspects were questioned, such as black status and readmission of former confederate states. At the end of it all, three amendments had been ratified and southerners were forced to accept that blacks were their equals. With many changes happening, the constitution had a full revolution by adding three amendments that challenged the beliefs of many, while social changes merely took a step up and didn’t last long.
Slavery had been a central issue in the United States since the founding of the country when the Founding Fathers As the U.S. moved closer to war, it became more divided by its attitudes, interests, and general lifestyles. Although sectionalism, the loyalty to interests of a particular region over the country, can be traced to the earliest years of the new nation, it became more of an obstacle in the 19th century as Americans began to see themselves as either Southerners or Northerners. Although sectional discord was an important factor leading to the onset of war, at its core was the division and conflicts related to slavery. This is seen with a brief examination of the election of 1860.
Slavery came to a complete end, the South lost much of its power, and President Abraham Lincoln died for his belief in the iconic words “All men were created equal.” Understanding the many effects of the end of the American Civil War can lead to a better understanding of the nation as a whole, and some of the current problems it
Reflection on the Reconstruction Period The reconstruction period was a time of cause and effect. It was a time when in order to rebuild the strength of society economically, socially, and politically after a the loss of life and stability in the civil war. In the socratic seminar we discussed how the during the reconstruction period the goal was to ‘fix’ the south as in the eyes of the government, they were the cause of the problem.
They quoted, “all men and women are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator…” (History). This meant that the belief for women’s right to vote was circulating in their minds; thus, this was the beginning to the path for women suffrage. Susan B. Anthony, including other female advocates, believed that they can extend to universal suffrage. The right for suffrage was not only for women, but it was also for African Americans.
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. During the Reconstruction period there were numerous political transformations in the country.
Many lower class citizens such as women, African American, and immigrants demanded their god-given rights of suffrage and freedom, and being accepted in society as an equal citizen. The Women’s Rights Movement assembled due to the unfair distribution of rights in men and women. According to Document I, women demanded their right to “be free as man is free, to be represented in the gov’t… [and]…we now demand our right to vote according to the declaration of the gov’t under which we live.” Elizabeth Cady Stanton protests of being inferior to men, being governed without their consent, yet still being taxed by the “democratic” gov’t to which they mean nothing.
To say the time period following the Civil War in the United States involved a lot of change would be a understatement. Between the years 1870 and 1900 the people of the United States lived through a period of great change. Not only did they witness technological advances that would change their daily lives, they also saw new laws and organizations formed. All of this was done in hopes of improving the country. Many of these changes came about because of the type of businesses that were formed.
Many speeches were given to help them gain their right. Susan B. Anthony gave speeches so that it would help them gain the support they needed for their journey. She did this to prove to women that they were not going to be taken seriously unless they prove that they can, which was getting that right for them. In 1872 Susan started doing things by herself. She went to vote illegally for the presidential election
In addition, Helen Keller created more opportunities for women by advocating for their rights. During Helen Keller’s time, women were not granted the suffrage, known as the right to vote. Keller along with other women suffragists fought for the right to vote. Many people thought that women should not be educated or have the right to vote because they would be able to think for themselves, but Helen Keller fought that belief (MacLeod 20). Along with women’s suffragist, Keller also believed in socialism.
This movement not only involved with white suffragists, but also with the black suffragists; the whole event was concentrating on sex and racial equality. "As Stanton consistently put it, the republican lesson of the war was that popular sovereignty, the equal political rights of all individuals, preceded and underlay government and nations.... The belief that the right to vote was the individual 's natural right made the case for woman suffrage much stronger." (Dubois, 91) Stanton believed that through the lesion of equal political rights and individual’s natural right made the woman suffrage even stronger.
Women suffrage is women gaining the right to vote. Susan B. Anthony was a very important person in this movement. The first major meeting of women to discuss their rights was in Seneca Falls, NY. A document similar to the declaration of independence was written by women. It listed the grievances, or issues, that women had with society, it was named the Declaration of Sentiments.
The Civil War and the period of Reconstruction brought significant political, social, and economic changes to American society, and these effects continued into the 20th century. Post Civil War (After the Civil War – The period after the Civil War) - President Abraham Lincoln and Congress were determined to rebuild the nation. Lincoln wanted to restore the Union by readmitting the southern states that had seceded, as well as provide African Americans with more rights. Period of Conflict -
“I have encountered riotous mobs and have been hung in effigy, but my motto is: Men's rights are nothing more. Women's rights are nothing less.” Susan B. Anthony Susan B. Anthony is considered by some as the founding mother of the women’s suffrage movement in the United States. Her goal: men and women treated equally under the eyes of the law and society. The 19th Amendment in 1920 would be the culmination event for this movement, but the winds of change began blowing in 1848.
“These two amendments allowed men to vote, but still permitted states to deny the vote to women” (Kirk, G. & Okazawa-Rey, M. 2013). Once they submitted their votes, they immediately had a warrant out for them because women were not able to vote during this time. After they were caught, they were taken to trial, which lasted for a long year (McDavitt 1944). However, the question for women suffrage bubbled up to the service, which proved to legislation that they needed equal rights for women (McDavitt 1944). According to the textbook, Elizabeth Stanton and Susan B. Anthony formed the Woman Suffrage Association and started working towards getting the women the right to vote (Kirk, G. & Okazawa-Rey, M. 2013).