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Chapter 17

Reconstruction, 1863-1877

© 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


Wartime Reconstruction
• Problem of Black equality, even most northern
states denied it
• Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction
(1863)
– 10% of 1860 voters swear loyalty oath to U.S. and
agree to end slavery, state could begin
reconstruction process
– Some Republicans opposed because not enough
protection for freed slaves

© 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


Radical Republicans and
Reconstruction
• Thaddeus Stevens and Charles Sumner: Radical
Reconstruction leaders
– Give freed slaves land of Confederates
– Give freed slaves right to vote
• Louisiana’s reconstructed government rejected by
even non-Radical Republicans
• Wade-Davis Reconstruction Bill (1864)
– Lincoln’s veto

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Andrew Johnson and
Reconstruction
• Tennessee Democrat who was the only
southern senator to stay in office after
secession
• Radical Republicans wanted punitive
Reconstruction and Black enfranchisement
Johnson’s Policy
• Presidential proclamations
– Amnesty Proclamation
– Formation of new state governments in South
• Radical opposed, many supported Johnson
• Moderate Republicans

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Southern Defiance
• Thirteenth Amendment – many Southern states
balked at ratifying
• Neo-confederate violence against Blacks
• Presidential pardons made to ex-Confederates by
Johnson
• Many ex-Confederate leaders elected to Congress
– Alexander Hamilton Stephens
• Praise and support of Johnson from leading
Northern Democrats

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The Black Codes
• State governments that reduced newly freed
slaves to a condition close to slavery
– Blacks were excluded from juries, ballot boxes,
interracial marriages, were punished more
severely, could not lease land
– Unemployed blacks declared vagrants and hired
out to planters

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Land and Labor in the Postwar
South

• Post-war South was in economic shambles


• Post-war Slaves:
– Returned to farming for wages or crop shares
– Moved into towns
– Searched out relatives

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


The Freedmen’s Bureau
• Union army occupies South
• Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and
Abandoned Lands
• Sharecropping

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Land for the Landless
• Most slaves could not purchase land
• “40 acres and a mule”
• President Johnson restores almost all land to
prewar owners by 1866

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Education
• Abolitionists helped freed people obtain
education
• 2,000 Northern teachers (3/4 were women)
– Trained black teachers: missionary societies
– Black colleges founded

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The Advent of Congressional
Reconstruction

• Congress refused to admit former


Confederate states
• Some Republicans wanted to enfranchise
Blacks, but were constrained by fears of
racist northern electorate

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


Schism Between President and
Congress

• Freedmen’s Bureau extension


• Civil Rights Act (1866)
• Congress passed both over presidential veto

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The Fourteenth Amendment
• Passed in Congress, 1866
– Most important provisions for defining and
enforcing civil rights and liberties

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


The 1866 Elections
• Republican campaign theme: 14th
Amendment
• Johnson and the National Union Party
• Deadly race riots in Memphis and New
Orleans
• Republicans win three-to-one majority in
Congress

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


The Reconstruction Acts of 1867
• Compromise between Radical and Moderate
Republicans
• Created five military districts
• Permitted Black suffrage
• States must ratify 14th Amendment to be
readmitted
• Many southerners boycott elections
• Scalawags and Carpetbaggers
• Johnson tries to slow Congressional
Reconstruction

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The Impeachment of Andrew
Johnson
• Threats of impeachment
• Edwin M. Stanton
• Tenure of Office Act
• House votes to impeach Johnson
• Long and complicated impeachment trial in Senate
• Moderates fear successful impeachment will
endanger balance of powers
• Senate fails to impeach by 1 vote

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The Completion of Formal
Reconstruction
• New state constitutions in the South
– Universal male suffrage
– Statewide public schools, but they could be
segregated
– More state responsibility for social welfare
• Violence and Ku Klux Klan
• 8 southern states ratify 14th Amendment

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The Fifteenth Amendment
• Prohibited states from denying the right to
vote on grounds of race, color, or previous
condition of servitude
• Woman’s suffragists embittered
– Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony

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The Election of 1868
• Election was referendum on Congressional
Reconstruction
• Ulysses S. Grant
– Republican nominee
– Opposed Johnson’s Reconstruction policies
• Horatio Seymour
– Frank Blair
– Nathan Bedford Forrest and the KKK
– Grant wins electoral college, but got minority of white
vote nationally

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The Grant Administration
• Scandals
– 3 Cabinet members resigned
• Grant’s administration not alone
– “Boss” William Marcy Tweed and Tammany Hall
– Credit Mobilier
– An “Era of Good Stealings”
• Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner
– The Gilded Age (1873)

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Civil Service Reform
• “spoils system”
• Politicized bureaucracy with unqualified
people
• Reformers wanted competitive exams for
civil service positions
• George William Curtis and the Civil
Service Commission

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


Foreign Policy Issues
• Santo Domingo affair
• Treaty of Washington (1871)
– Hamilton Fish
– "Alabama Claims"
• Canada
– Fenians

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Reconstruction in the South
• Northerners tire of sectional strife and
Reconstruction
• Democratic violence protesting
Reconstruction
• Instability of the Republican coalition

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Blacks in Office
• Republican Party
– Southern white perceive it as symbol of conquest and
humiliation
– 80% of Republican voters in South were Black
• 1868-1876:
– 14 Black Representatives
– 2 Black Senators
• "Negro rule“ myth
– Blacks held 15-20% of elected offices in
Reconstruction

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“Carpetbaggers”
• Adventurers who came South with nothing
but a “carpetbag” in which to stow loot
plundered from helpless people
• Those who settled in post-war South hoped
to rebuild its society in the image of the
free-labor North

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“Scalawags”
• Native-born whites who joined the southern
Republican Party
– Came from upcountry Unionist areas of western
North Carolina and Virginia, eastern Tennessee
– Often former Whigs
• Republican Party in the South a fragile and
vulnerable coalition

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The Ku Klux Klan

• Klan purpose
– Social control of freed slaves
– Destroy Republican Party in the South
• “Colfax Massacre” (1873)
• Ku Klux Klan Act (1871)

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


The Election of 1872
• Liberal Republicans and Horace Greeley
– Democrats also endorse Greeley
• Thomas Nast cartoons
• Grant reelected

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The Panic of 1873
• Wall Street panic
– Five-year depression
– Jay Cooke’s banking firm and the Northern
Pacific Railroad

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The Retreat from Reconstruction
• After the panic, Democrats made large gains in
1874 Congressional elections
– 1st House majority in 18 years
• Public opinion turned against Republicans in the
South
• 1875: only 4 states remained under Republican
control
– South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana
– White paramilitary groups

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The Mississippi Election of 1875
• Mississippi Plan (1875)
– All whites should become Democrats
– Intimidate Black voters
– Adelbert Ames
– Grant trades Ohio for Mississippi

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The Supreme Court and
Reconstruction

• U.S. v. Cruikshank (1870)


• U.S. v. Reese (1871)
• Civil Rights Cases (1883)

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The Election of 1876
• Corruption and government reform were
key campaign issues
• Samuel J. Tilden
• Rutherford B. Hayes
• “bulldozing”
• “Hamburg Massacre”

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Disputed Results

• Discrepancies in results
– Hayes had votes, but Democrats refused the
results
– Democratic House, Republican Senate
– Constitutional crisis
• Electoral commission

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The Compromise of 1877
• Electoral Commission partisan vote awarded
victory to Hayes
• Compromise
– Federal aid and patronage to Democrats in South
– Withdrawal of federal troops

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The End of Reconstruction
• Postmaster David M. Key (D-TN)
• Internal Improvements for South 1878
• Removal of federal troops in Louisiana and
South Carolina
• North tired of crisis and Reconstruction

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.


Conclusion
• Federal government power increases
• Amendments Thirteen, Fourteen, Fifteen
• North wearied of Reconstruction
• Withdrawal of federal troops from the
South in 1877

(c) 2003 Wadsworth Group All rights reserved.