Chapter 12-Reconstruction

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Chapter 12:
Reconstruction
American History
Plans begin to unfold
 The president and Congress grappled with the difficult tasks of
Reconstruction, or rebuilding the country after the Civil War
 plans began right after the Civil War began
 In 1863, Lincoln issued the Proclamation of Amnesty and
Reconstruction
 offered general amnesty, or pardon for all Southerners who took
loyalty to the U.S. and accepted Union proclamation on slavery
 The Radical Republicans, in opposition to Lincoln’s policies,
had three goals:
 prevent leaders of Confederacy from returning to power
 wanted Republican Party to be an institution in the South
 Help African Americans gain the right to vote
Wade-Davis Bill
 Moderate Republicans caught in the mix between the radicals
and Lincoln came up with a plan that supported both sides
 Wade-Davis Bill
 Required majority of white male Southerners to swear allegiance to the
Union
 Confederate state would then hold a constitutional convention to
establish a new state government
 Each convention would then abolish slavery, reject all debts, and
deprive all Confederate officials and military leaders of the right to
vote or hold office
 Lincoln blocked the bill with a pocket veto, or waiting until
the session of Congress expired without signing the bill
 felt bill was counterproductive
Freedman’s Bureau
 Lincoln realized that the South was in chaos from the
thousands of homeless, unemployed, and hungry
 Lincoln also realized that thousands of freedmen, or freed
slaves, were coming into the North
 During the war, General Sherman used all abandoned
plantations to help freed African Americans
 Refugee crisis led to the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and
Abandoned Lands, or the Freedman’s Bureau
 Bureaus helped feed and clothe refugees of the war, find
employment for African Americans on plantations, negotiate
pay wages with Southern employers, and educated former
slaves in the North
Johnson’s Plans for
Reconstruction
 Johnson took over as President when
Lincoln was assassinated
 was hot tempered, but believed in
moderate principles
 In 1865, Johnson implemented his own
restoration plan
 Offered pardon to all Confederates
 excluded former military officials and
Confederates with property valuing
more than $20,000
 Those who were excluded from the
pardon had to apply directly to
Johnson for a pardon, for he believed
these people caused the war
 Each state had to revoke its secession
and ratify the Thirteenth Amendment
Black Codes
 New Southern legislatives passed
a series of laws known as black
codes
 severely limited African rights in
the South
 Africans were required to enter
into an annual working contract
 African children had to join
apprenticeships and could be
subjected to beating during these
apprenticeships
 Set specific work hours and
required Africans to get licenses
for non-agricultural jobs
Radicals take control
 Many moderates joined the radicals and developed the Joint
Committee on Reconstruction, developing their own plan for
rebuilding the Union
 passed the Civil Rights Act of 1866, granting all Americans, except
Native Americans, citizenship, and gave Africans the right to own
land
 passed the Fourteenth Amendment, granting citizenship to all
people born and naturalized in the United States and that no
person should be deprived of “life, liberty, and property”, or
“equal protection of the laws”
 passed the Military Reconstruction Act, dividing the South into five
military districts and had to hold another constitutional convention
to ratify a constitution deemed acceptable by Congress
Johnson impeached
 By preventing Johnsons from bypassing Grant or firing
Secretary of War Edwin Stanton, both supporters of Republican
ideals, Congress passed these two acts:
 Command of Army Act: all orders of the president had to go
through headquarters of the general of the army
 Tenure of Office Act: Senate had to approve any removal of office
who appointment required Senate consent
 Johnson fired Stanton anyway, and was impeached, or charged
with high crimes and misdemeanors for not abiding by the
Tenure of Office Act
 was put on trial, but was acquitted and kept his place in office,
but had little power due to the impeachment
Election of 1868
 Johnson finished his term and did
not seek re-election
 Republicans nominated Ulysses S.
Grant for President
 won elected, and gained major
support from Africans in the South
 With the President on their side,
Congress passed the Fifteenth
Amendment
 Declared the right to vote shall not be
denied by any “race, color, or
previous conditions of servitude”
Carpetbaggers and Scalawags
 Many Northerners moved to the South
and were elected into government
positions
 Carpetbaggers
 were seen as intruders trying to exploit
the South
 some wanted to help, while others did
want to take advantage of the war-torn
South
 Southerners also hated scalawags, or
white Southerners working with
Republicans and supported
Reconstruction
 some were farmers, some were
Democrats, and most were businessmen
Republican Reforms
 African Americans begin to take government positions
 held different types of positions in all facets of government
 angered Southerners, claiming “Black Republicanism” was taking over
the South
 Republicans made reforms in the South
 repelled all black code laws
 established state hospitals and institutes for orphans, the mentally ill,
and the hearing and visually disabled
 established a system of public schools
 rebuilt roads, railways, and bridges
 Reforms cost money, however
 officials implemented heavy taxes
 corrupt officials committed grafts, or illegally gaining money through
politics
African American communities
 Once freed, African Americans desired to
get an education
 incorporated African Americans in public
schools
 built schools for African American
children
 institutions offered advanced academics
for African Americans
 African Americans also established their
own churches
 housed social gatherings, events, and
schools
 African Americans began several
organizations established to help
communities
Resistance from the South
 Organizations began to erupt to
counteract the Black Republicans
 Ku Klux Klan
 started by former Confederate soldiers
 Goal was to drive out the Union and
carpetbaggers and regain the South for
the Democratic Party
 terrorized African American and
Republican communities
 Republicans and African Americans
formed groups to protect themselves
from these organizations
 confrontations all turned out violent
Enforcement Acts
 To combat the violence in the
South, Grant and Congress
passed three Enforcement Acts
 One made it a federal crime to
interfere with a person’s right to
vote
 Two made federal marshals in
charge of federal elections
 Three was the Klu Klux Klan Act,
outlawed the activities of the
Klan
Republican Party splits
 Republican-controlled Congress continued to enforce
Reconstruction and expanded on programs it introduced during
the Civil War
 kept tariffs high, tightened banking regulations, repaid debts with
gold, and increased federal spending on railways, port facilities,
and the postal service
 Kept in place taxes on alcohol and tobacco: sin taxes
 Democrats and Liberal Republicans disagreed with these
motions, stating they were used only to make the wealthy
more rich
 nominated Horace Greeley for president, promising to remove
Union troops from the South and pardon nearly all Confederates
 still lost to Grant
Scandals and Panics rock the
White House
 Grant’s second term was plagued
with scandals and a financial panic
 One scandal involved Secretary of
War William Belknap, who accepted
bribes from merchants operating in
army posts in the West
 Another, called the “Whiskey Ring”
scandal, a group of government
officials and distillers cheated the
government by filing false tax reports
 Panic of 1873: when large banking
firm of Jay Cooke & Company
declared bankruptcy, smaller banks
closed and the stock market
plummeted
Democrats take control, but
illegally
 In the mid-term elections in 1873,
Democrats took much of the seats in
Congress, giving them power
 committed election frauds and
appealed to Southern farmers, stating
that the South had a struggle
between African Americans and
whites
 From Grant’s damaged reputation,
the Republicans nominated
Rutherford B. Hayes, while
Democrats nominated Samuel Tilton
for president
Compromise of 1877
 From the election, Tilton won the
majority of votes, but 20 electoral votes
could not be accounted for
 came from three states that Republicans
controlled: Louisiana, South Carolina,
and Florida
 Had been so much election fraud on both
sides, no one could tell who the votes
went to
 To help solve this issue, Congress
appointed a 15 man panel
 8 were Republican, who voted for Hayes
to have the votes
 Southern Democrats sided with the
Republicans, stating they helped Hayes
win and the Democrats accepted this
vote
 Compromise of 1877
The New South emerges
 Southern leaders called for the creation of the “New South”,
since the South could not be like it was before the war
 With deals from Northerner financiers, portions of the South’s
economy became industrial
 African Americans began to return to plantations to either work
for wages or become tenant farmers, or work for rent
 some tenant farmers became sharecroppers, or people who paid
rent using the crops they grew
 got equipment from furnishing merchants, or country stores, who
supplied credit and issued crop liens, or taking of crops to pay for
debts acquired by credit
 the crop liens system led many to debt peonage, or inability to
move off of land due to the debts they had acquired
 could not pay off debt or declare bankruptcy
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