Important Terms
• Reconstruction – a period of rebuilding
of relations between North/South,
lasting from 1865-1877
• Freedman – freed Southern blacks
• Carpetbaggers – Northern blacks who
migrated to the South
• Scalawags – white Southerners who
supported Reconstruction
Key Questions
1. How do we
bring the South
back into the
2. How do we
rebuild the
South after its
during the war?
4. What branch
of government
should control
the process of
3. How do we
integrate and
protect newlyemancipated
black freedmen?
Why was Reconstruction Needed?
• South was in financial and military ruin
600,000 soldiers dead
Atlanta and Richmond in ruins
Southern inflation at 9,000%
Rail infrastructure in South destroyed
What to do with Confederate Leadership?
• A new society not based on slavery was
• Strong negative feelings by both sides
still existed - “The Blame Game”
A Difference of Opinion
Different political parties disagreed as
to how to deal with the South
* Radical
Republicans (Thaddeus Stevens,
Charles Sumner) – wanted to punish South
(Wade-Davis Bill)
* Lincoln (Moderate) – wanted speedy
elections with generous terms (“10% Plan”)
– determined to find a course that united
the South w/o alienating it
* Southern Democrats – wanted a return to
‘the old days and the old ways’
President Lincoln’s “10% Plan”
 Proclamation of Amnesty and
Reconstruction (December 8, 1863)
 Replace majority rule with “loyal rule” in
the South.
 Didn’t consult Congress – wanted to run
Reconstruction himself.
 Pardon to all but the highest ranking
military and civilian Confederate
 When 10% of the voting population in
the 1860 election had taken an oath of
loyalty and established a government, it
would be recognized.
Effects of Lincoln’s “10% Plan”
1864  “Lincoln
Governments” formed in
Formed prior to end of War
Created bitter opposition
by Radical Republicans
Led to Wade-Davis Bill of
Wade-Davis Bill (1864)
 Required 50% of the number
of 1860 voters to take an
“iron clad” oath of allegiance
(swearing they had never
voluntarily aided the
rebellion ).
 Enacted specific safeguards
of freedmen’s liberties.
W. Davis
Lincoln’s assassination casts doubt on
Reconstruction and gives the Radicals a
chance to punish the South
A political tug-of-war ensued with new
president Andrew Johnson
* Who
would run Reconstruction now?
* How should Democracy run in the South?
* Citizenship of Confederate men?
* Citizenship of Freedmen?
President Andrew Johnson
 Jacksonian Democrat.
 Anti-Aristocrat.
 White Supremacist.
 Grew up poor/saw
black population as $
threat to poor whites.
“This is a country for white
men, and by God, as long as
I am president, it shall be a
government for white men.”
President Johnson’s Plan (10%+)
 Johnson’s plan was too conciliatory
 Pardoned too many Southern leaders w/o punishing them
 Tried hurriedly to bring former Confederate states back
into the Union – allowed Southern states to hold elections
in 1865
 Vetoed several key civil rights bills
 “The President himself is his own worst counsellor, as
he is his own worst defender." – Charles Sumner
1. Former Civil War officers leading Confederates.
2. Pardoned planter aristocrats brought them back
to political power to control state organizations.
3. Republicans were outraged that planter elite
were back in power in the South!
Growing Northern Alarm!
 Many Southern state
constitutions fell short of
minimum requirements.
 Johnson granted 13,500 special
pardons and returned their land.
 Revival of southern defiance.
“Black Codes”
 Purpose:
Guarantee stable labor
supply now that blacks
were emancipated.
Restore pre-emancipation
system of race relations.
 Southern policies forced many
blacks to become share-croppers
[tenant farmers].
* System of intimidation arose –
limited possession of weapons,
threatened to take black kids
away from poor families
Slavery is Dead?
13th Amendment
 Ratified in December, 1865.
 Neither slavery nor involuntary
servitude, except as punishment for
crime whereof the party shall have been
duly convicted, shall exist within the
United States or any place subject to
their jurisdiction.
 Congress shall have power to enforce
this article by appropriate legislation.
Congress Breaks with the President
 Congress bars Southern
Congressional delegates in 1865
after Johnson allows them to vote.
 Joint Committee on
Reconstruction created.
 February, 1866  President
vetoed the Freedmen’s
Bureau bill.
 March, 1866  Johnson
vetoed the 1866 Civil Rights Act.
 Congress passed both bills over
Johnson’s vetoes  1st in
U. S. history!!
1866 Congressional Election
 A referendum on Radical Reconstruction.
 Johnson made an ill-conceived propaganda
tour around the country to push his plan.
 Republicans
won a 3-1
majority in
both houses
and began to
override many
of Johnson’s
Johnson’s “Swing around
the Circle”
Radical Plan for Readmission
 Congress removed civilian governments in the
South in 1867 and put the former Confederacy
under the rule of the Army.
 The Army conducted new elections in which the
freed slaves could vote, while those who held
leading positions under the Confederacy were
temporarily denied the vote and could not run for
 Required new state constitutions, including black
suffrage and ratification of the 13th and 14th
 New laws aimed at curbing Johnson’s power.
Reconstruction Acts of 1867
 Command of the Army Act
The President must issue all
Reconstruction orders through
the commander of the military.
 Tenure of Office Act
The President could not remove
any officials [esp. Cabinet members]
without the Senate’s consent, if the
position originally required Senate
 Designed to protect radical
members of Lincoln’s government.
 A question of the
constitutionality of this law.
Edwin Stanton
President Johnson’s Impeachment
 Johnson removed Stanton in February, 1868.
 Johnson replaced generals in the field who were
more sympathetic to Radical Reconstruction.
 The House impeached him on February 24
before even
drawing up the
charges by a
vote of 126 – 47!
The Senate Trial
 11 week trial.
 Johnson acquitted
35 to 19 (one short of
required 2/3s vote).
Reconstruction Acts of 1867
 Military Reconstruction Act
Restart Reconstruction in the 10 Southern states
that refused to ratify the 14th Amendment.
Divide the 10 “unreconstructed states” into 5
 Ratified in July, 1868.
Overruled Dred Scott and provided a broad
definition of citizenship to protect blacks.
Prohibited states & local governments from
depriving people of their rights w/o taking
certain steps.
Required each state to provide “Equal
Protection” to all people w/in their
 Southern states would be punished for
denying the right to vote to black
A Change in the Balance of
Southern Power
White Citizens
The 1868 Republican Ticket
The 1868 Democratic Ticket
Waving the Bloody Shirt!
Republican “Southern
1868 Presidential Election
Grant Administration Scandals
 Grant presided over an era of
growth and
 Inability to foster
Credit Mobilier
Whiskey Ring.
The “Indian
15th Amendment
 Ratified in 1870.
 The right of citizens of the United States
to vote shall not be denied or abridged by
the United States or by any state on
account of race, color, or previous condition
of servitude.
 The Congress shall have power to enforce
this article by appropriate legislation.
 Women’s rights groups were furious that
they were not granted the vote!
Rise of White Supremacy
Throughout the South, secret societies form
*White Liners, Knights of White Camellia, KKK
*Sadistically tortured and murdered blacks
*KKK saw itself as THE LAW and had a Christian duty
to destroy black authority
Grant declares Martial Law in South Carolina
(1871) and arrested/tried suspected KKK leaders
Growing Democratic victories results in Grant
losing most of his support
The “Invisible Empire of the South”
The Election of 1872
 Rumors of corruption
during Grant’s first
term discredit
 Horace Greeley runs
as a Democrat/Liberal
Republican candidate.
 Greeley attacked as a
fool and a crank.
 Greeley died on
November 29, 1872
First Time a Candidate Dies
during the election!
During the Campaign!
1872 Presidential Election
The Panic of 1873
 Stock market collapse in
Vienna, then in America
with Jay Cooke & Co.
leads to 1,000,000
unemployed – recession
lasts 6 years
 Northern whites lose
interest in Reconstruction
 1876  Greenback Party
formed & makes gains in
congressional races 
The “Crime of ’73’!
The Civil Rights Act of 1875
 Crime for any individual to deny full &
equal use of public conveyances and
public places.
 Prohibited discrimination in jury
 Weakness  lacked a strong
enforcement mechanism.
 No new civil rights act was attempted
for 90 years!
“The Lost Cause”
Southerners see recent setbacks by
Republicans as chance to return to “The
Old South”
* Dedicated
locations of CW battles and
remembering the best of southern ideals
(religious virtues, nobility, loyalty men)
* White Northerners fall in love with
Southern “Cause” as way to forget Panic of
* Southern elections are violent and dissuade
blacks from voting w/no reaction from N.
Confederate Reunion Parade (1907)
The Coushatta Massacre
Six black officeholders murdered near
Coushatta, near New Orleans (1874)
* Grant
overreacts by occupying New Orleans
* Very unpopular with White Northerners
* Leads to Democrats overtaking Congress in
1876 election
* As other acts of violence occur (Miss.),
Grant refuses to assist blacks
Grant leaves office without clear path
or support for Reconstruction
Supreme Court Reversals
To make matters worse, the Court began to
undo some of the changes made by Congress
* 1876:
Ruled that the federal government could not
punish people who violated civil rights of blacks
* 1876: Ruled that blacks could not vote, and gave
right to determine who could vote to the states
South uses these rulings to institute poll
taxes and literacy tests to restrict voting.
Violence against blacks increased
The Court weakened Reconstruction & blocked
efforts for blacks to gain full equality
1876 Presidential Tickets
1876 Presidential Election
The Political Crisis of 1877
 “Corrupt Bargain”
Part II?
The Political Crisis of 1877
Highly contested election with no clear
winner – divided the country
* In
secret meetings, Southern Democrats
agreed to allow Rutherford B. Hayes to
become president if Republicans agreed to
end Reconstruction
* Hayes unable to enforce 13th - 15th b/c
Democrats blocked military spending
throughout 1877/78
* RESULTS: Blacks move West; White
Southerners enforce Black Codes
A Political Crisis: The
“Compromise” of 1877
Hayes Prevails
Results of Reconstruction
Most historians agree as to its failure
* Failure
of gov’t to enforce protections for
blacks, rise of white supremacy, and
allowing Radicals to run Reconstruction
* Blacks do not see significant legislation
again until 1965 Civil Rights Act
* “The slave went free; stood a brief moment
in the sun; then moved back again toward
slavery.” (W.E.B. DuBois)