Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out



  What were the Successes?
   What were the Failures?

     UNIT 5 HUSH
     What was Reconstruction??

• Reconstruction was the federal
  government’s attempt to repair the
  damage to the South after the Civil War
• Occurred from 1865 to 1877
• Controversial
  – Had mixed results
            Think About It…
•Was Reconstruction a success?
•Was Reconstruction a failure??

• Most historians claim that Reconstruction failed to
  truly help southern blacks and thoroughly
  angered and alienated southern whites.
      Results of the Civil War
• The entire country was impacted by the
• The North
  – Lost 364k Federal soldiers including 38k
    African Americans
• The South
  – Lost 260k Confederate soldiers
  – 1/5 of all white men in region
           Southerners’ Hardships
1.   Black Southerners
     •   4 million freed slaves with little or no skills or
     •   Homeless and jobless
2. Plantation owners
     •   Lost slave labor that amounted to $3 billion
     •   Lost seized plantation land- $100 million
3. Poor white southerners
     •   Could not find new jobs
     •   Moved North if possible
         Federal Government’s Dilemma
   What to do About the South??
• Lincoln's Plan
  – Pardon any Southerner who pledged
    allegiance to the United States
     • But denied pardons to officials who had killed
       African American war prisoners
  – Permitted states to hold a new constitutional
    convention AFTER 10% of voters had sworn
    allegiance to the US
     • After state constitutions were accepted, voting
       rights would be reestablished
      The Radical Republicans
• Most northerners in Congress were
  Republicans and opposed to slavery
  – They now wanted to punish the South
• Saw Lincoln’s plan as too forgiving
  – Congress’ Plan was to totally reconstruct
    southern society and guarantee southern blacks
  – Passed own plan- The Wade- Davis Act
     • Lincoln used pocket-veto to kill bill
The Death of a President
      • Did not live to see the
        peace he helped to create
        – Conspirators and southern
          sympathizers plotted against
          the president
        – Died in office on April 14,
      Lincoln - Kennedy                       9) The first name of Lincoln's private
                                              secretary was John, the last
         Coincidences                             name of Kennedy's private secretary was
1) Lincoln was elected in 1860, Kennedy in    10) John Wilkes Booth was born in 1839
     1960, 100 years apart                    [according to some sources] Lee Harvey
2) Both men were deeply involved in civil     Oswald was born in 1939, one hundred
     rights for African Americans.            years later.
3) Both men were assassinated on a Friday, 11) Both assassins were Southerners who
     in the presence of                       held extremist views.
   their wives.                               12) Both assassins were murdered before
4) Each wife had lost a child while living at they could be brought to trial.
     the White House.
                                              13) Booth shot Lincoln in a theater and fled
5) Both men were killed by a bullet that
     entered the head from behind.            to a warehouse. Oswald
6) Lincoln was killed in Ford's Theater.           shot Kennedy from a warehouse and
     Kennedy met his death while              fled to a theater.
    riding in a Lincoln convertible made by   14) Lincoln and KENNEDY each has 7
     the Ford Motor Company.                  letters.
7) Both men were succeeded by vice-           15) ANDREW JOHNSON and LYNDON
     presidents named Johnson who were        JOHNSON each has 13 letters.
    southern Democrats and former senators. 16) JOHN Wilkes BOOTH and LEE HARVEY
8) Andrew Johnson was born in 1808.           OSWALD each has 15 letters.
     Lyndon Johnson was born in 1908,
                                              17) A Lincoln staffer Miss Kennedy told him
    exactly one hundred years later.
                                              not to go to the Theater. A Kennedy
                                                  staffer Miss Lincoln, told him not to go
                                              to Dallas.
Strange….But True???
    President Andrew Johnson
• Not well liked by either side
• Only Southern senator to remain in Congress
  after Secession
• Created own plan for Reconstructing the South

                       Political Cartoon,
            Johnson’s Plan
• Pardon all Southerner’s who swore
  allegiance to US
• Permitted each southern state to hold a
  constitutional convention without Lincoln’s
  10% requirement
• Former Confederate states had to void
  secession, abolish slavery, and ratify 13th
  – Then elections could be held and statehood
   Like Adding Fuel to the Fire
• Johnson’s Plan vs. Lincoln's Plan
  – Johnson’s was more generous to the South
  – Created anger and resentment in Congress
• Congress decided to make own plan
• The Radical Republicans were born
          Thank God Almighty
            I’m Free At Last!
• Southern blacks celebrated their freedom as
  the politicians decided how to proceed
  with punishing the South
  –   Freedom   of Movement
  –   Freedom   to Own Land
  –   Freedom   to Worship
  –   Freedom   to Learn
      The Freedman’s Bureau
• Created in March 1865 as a relief agency
  for newly freed slaves or “Freedmen”
• Was intended to offer assistance in
  housing, education, and citizenship
  – Was not completely successfully in any of
    these areas (due to corruption and
  – Did issue twenty million rations of food,
    established 50 hospitals, set up 4,330 schools
    and helped establish the first Black colleges.
             Congress’ Plan
1. Put the South under military rule
2. Order southern states to hold new elections for
   constitutional delegates
3. Required all states to allow African- Americans
   the right to vote
4. Temporarily barred former Confederates from
5. Required southern states to guarantee equal
   rights for all citizens
6. Required all states ratify the 14th Amendment
               Black Codes
• After Southern states met Johnson’s
  requirements they one-by-one rolled back
  civil rights laws
• Many southern states instituted Black
  Codes as a way of getting around
  – Set curfews, created vagrancy laws, set year-
    long contract minimums, limited black
    women’s right to work, restricted renting to
 The 14th and 15th Amendments
• Congress was concerned about these
  abuses and decided to add civil rights to
  the US Constitution
  – 14th Amendment- Granted citizenship and
    “equal protection” to all African Americans
  – 15th Amendment- Gave the right to vote to all
    African American males over the age of 21
• Both amendments have had far reaching
  effects in the 19th-20th and 21st centuries
A Showdown Between Two Branches
        of Government!
• A constitutional crisis
  occurred when the
  Congress’ plan was
  pitted against the
  President’s plan
• Two powerful Senators
  led the charge against
  President Johnson
  – Charles Sumner- MA
    senator and abolitionist
  – Thaddeus Stevens- PA
    senator and power player
   Executive versus Legislative
• President Johnson tried to fire Secretary of
  War Edwin Stanton
• The Radical Republicans tried to block the
  firing using the new Tenure of Office Act
• Provisions of the Act:
  – Took power away from the President
  – The hiring and firing of Cabinet secretaries had
    to approved by Congress
  – The title of Commander-in-Chief was also
Andrew Johnson
Johnson as Caesar: “Treason is a crime and must be punished"
           The 1st Presidential
• The House of Representatives filed charges
  of impeachment against Johnson
• The House voted ‘yes’
• The Senate held a trial and Johnson was
  found ‘not guilty’ by one vote
  – Was not convicted
  – Kept his office
  – Established the precedent that “high crimes
    and misdemeanors” were needed to remove a
The Republican South
          • Not everyone in the
            South was a Democrat
          • Northerners who
            moved South to take
            advantage of the
            situation for profit
            were called
          • Even more hated
            were the “Scalawags
            – Southerners who
              joined the Republican
              party or who were
              former Whigs
  • Political
“The Old South
   carries the
   Burden of

• Notice ‘AJ’ on
   top of the
      The Life of a Freedman
• The South was desperate for workers
  – Most former slaves who could leave did
• Most who stayed in South became
  sharecroppers or tenant farmers
  – Worked another person’s land
  – Had free or reduced rent in exchange for
    tending crops
  – Received part of profit- if any was made
    Economic Effects on South
• The labor force changed
  – Cotton harvest changed from 90% slave labor to 40%
    white tenant farmers
• Emphasis now on cash crops
  – Cotton, tobacco, and sugar cane rather than food
  – The South became dependent upon imports of food
• Cycle of debt was established
  – Poverty in all classes and races
• Rise of merchant class in South
  – New stores sold goods on credit
      Birth of Industrial South
• Growth of southern cities
  – Atlanta, Nashville, Memphis, Dallas,
    Montgomery, Little Rock
• Some areas became industrial
  – Birmingham AL- steel production
  – However, the majority of Southerners
    remained dependent upon agriculture for their
            Terror Groups
• White Southerners unhappy with their new
  way of life created “political clubs” to
  complain about politics
• These soon evolved into terrorist groups
  – KKK, The Knights of the White Camilla…
• Used tactics such as intimidation, threats,
  and violence against freedmen,
  carpetbaggers, and scalawags
• Effective at stopping progression in South
          Stopping the Klan
• President Grant requested that Congress
  pass a series of laws outlawing hate groups
  and their tactics
  – The Enforcement Act of 1870
• Used federal troops to stop the violence,
  but once the troops withdrew the terror
  started again
President Ulysses
     S. Grant
   The End of Reconstruction
• Most Americans had become tired of
  Reconstruction by the mid-1870’s- Why?
  – The country had gone into debt
  – Reconstruction programs became known for greed
    and corruption
  – Southerners had gained back control in most
    Southern states (it took longer in GA!)
  – Southern states began to block legislation in Congress
  – Many Northern voters’ did not support the Radical
    Republican’s idea of full equality for blacks
  – An economic recession turned public opinion away
    from the movement for equal rights
      The Solid South is Born
• When the Southern states all were
  readmitted they began to vote in a
  Democratic block
• White Southern Democrats were elected
  who blocked new legislation
        The Election of 1876
• Republican Rutherford B. Hayes lost the
  popular vote to Democrat Samuel Tilden
• Congress was forced to settle the election
  – The vote went to Hayes when he promised to
    end Reconstruction
• The Compromise of 1877
  – Gave the Southern states self-control back
  – Reconstruction was officially over
“Compromise, Indeed!”-
      (Tilden or blood)
   Successes of Reconstruction
1. Union was rebuilt and South was rebuilt
2. Economic growth was established in the
3. The 14th and 15th Amendments granted
   rights to freedmen
4. The Freedman’s Bureau helped many
   newly freed slaves with a fresh start
5. Mandatory education was started in
    Failures of Reconstruction
1. Most blacks remained poor and
2. Terror groups were formed
3. Racist attitudes continued in both the
   North and South
4. Southern infrastructure and economies
   lagged far behind the North
5. Many problems remained unaddressed
  • Women, labor unions, and farmers fearful of
    the coming of the railroads
      Think About It…Again!
• Was Reconstruction a success?
• Was Reconstruction a failure??

• Why did the implementation of truly
  radical measures during Reconstruction fail
  to truly help southern Blacks while
  thoroughly angering and alienating
  southern whites?

To top