U.S. History Outline: IX. Reconstruction

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No peace treaty signed at the surrender of Appomattox -- a peace treaty would have recognized the Confederacy as a legitimate government

Lincoln had two goals in Reconstruction
    Reincorporate the South into the Union
       No punishment
       No aid
       Acting as if there hadn't been a war
    Not recognize the Conferacy as ever having existed
Congress wanted both punishment and aid for South
    Thaddeus Stevens (Penn.) and Charles Sumner (Mass.)
       Radical Republicans / Radical Reconstructionists
    Freedman's Bureau
       Created to deal with former slaves
       Distributed food, set up schools
       Helped Blacks find jobs and get land

Lincoln's Reconstruction Plan
    1. General amnesty (except for high-ranking officials of Confederate government)
    2. Southern states could regain their state governments if 10% of voters took loyalty oath
Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee were recaptured by the Union and qualified for the 10% plan before the end of the war, but Congress refused to seat their representatives

Wade-Davis Act
    Congress' response to Lincoln (it was vetoed)
    1. State could only be readmitted if majority of male population took loyalty oath
    2. State would have to adopt new constitution abolishing slavery and disenfranchising Confederate officers and government officials
    3. New state constitution would have to be adopted by a state convention made up of people who had never born arms against the U.S.

Lincoln assassinated - April 15, 1865
    Andrew Johnson took over

Restoration Plan (Andrew Johnson's Plan)
    1. Loyalty oath for majority of male population
    2. State must repeal the law by which state withdrew from the Union
    3. State must abolish slavery and ratify 13th Amendment
    4. U.S. would repudiate (refuse to pay) the Confederate war debt
By end of 1865, all southern states had qualified under Johnson's Plan, but Congress still refused to seat their representatives

Congress created Committee on Reconstruction

South had passed "Black Codes"
    Limited rights of Blacks
    Legal equivalent of slavery
Radical Congress passed Civil Rights Act
    Said Blacks couldn't be treated unequally
    Authorized the federal government to use force to enforce it
    14th Amendment gave equal rights and due process to Blacks
    Not all of North (Kentucky & Delaware) ratified 14th Amendment immediately
1866 - race riots in South
    Congress decided it was time to come up with a reconstruction program

Congress' Reconstruction Plan
    1. State must ratify 14th Amendment (only Tennessee ratified immediately)
    2. South divided into five military districts, in which the only people who could vote were black men and white men who had never participated in the rebellion
    3. Those voters had to elect constitutional convention to write a new constitution guaranteeing Blacks the right to vote
1868 - Eight states qualified and were readmitted (only 3 states left)
1869 - Virginia and Texas readmitted
1870 - Mississippi readmitted
    Last state to be readmitted
    Mississippi also had to ratify 15th Amendment

Suffragettes opposed 15th Amendment because it did not give voting rights to women

Radical Congress disapproved of Johnson
    Johnson did not use army to support reconstruction
    Johnson removed civil servants who were too helpful to Congress & reconstruction
    Tenure of Office Act
    Impeachment of Johnson (failed by 1 vote)
Radical Congress angry at Supreme Court
    Supreme Court declared use of military tribunals to try ex-Confederates unconstitutional
    Congress tried to restrict Supreme Court's power
    Supreme Court decided not to hear any more cases about Reconstruction
    Both sides backed down

Blacks in Southern government
    Blacks served in state legislatures
    No Blacks served as state governors
    Blacks only once held majority in state legislature (South Carolina)
    Some Black officials well-educated, others were field-hands with no education

Reconstruction changed school system in South

Land redistrubution would have split confiscated plantations among slaves
    Never happened, partly because Johnson prevented it
    Farms rented to Blacks
    Supplies sold on credit at inflated prices
    When crop came in, it went towards paying off debt
    Crop never enough to cover debt, which just increased each year
    Kept Blacks poor

Election of 1868 - Ulysses Grant (Rep.) vs. Horatio Seymore (Dem.)

Grant's cabinet
    Grant rewarded all of his friends with offices
    Many turned out to be corrupt or incompetent
    Because of Tenure of Office Act, Grant couldn't remove them

"Credit Mobilier" scam - the "credit mobilier" bank took bribes from railroad companies and funneled them to Congress

Panic of 1873 - paper currency issued during Civil War caused inflation
1879 - Specie Resumption Act
    Put country back on the gold standard
    Paper money became worthless

1867 - Sec. of State William Seward purchased Alaska

By 1872, most white males had regained right to vote, Southern states returned to much how they had been before Reconstruction

Election of 1876 - Rutherford B. Hayes (Rep.) vs. Samuel Tilden (Dem.)
    Votes for four Southern states disputed
    House of Representatives created special electoral commission to decide election
    Commission was supposed to be neutral, but 8 of the 15 were Republicans
    Hayes won election, Republicans agreed to end reconstruction to pacify Democrats
    Known as the "Compromise of 1877"

Fun Fact!
Because of the Compromise of 1877, Rutherford B. Hayes was known as "His Fraudulency" or "Old 8 to 7"

As reconstruction ended, South returned to conservative policies
       Conservative, Antibellum-style Southern politicians
    "Jim Crow" laws (1880s)
       Instituted by Southern governments
       Segregated whites and blacks
       Blacks' right to vote was restricted:
          Poll taxes (most Southern blacks were poor)
          Grandfather clauses
          Literacy tests
       Supreme Court upheld "Jim Crow" laws

Reconstruction led South to industrialize (although they didn't quite catch up to North)

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