Reconstruction - most turbulent and controversial era it lasts from the civil war until 1877.
The role of the federal government in protecting citizen’s rights.
Possibility of economic and racial justice.
Time of genuine progress for former slaves and the south as a whole.
Northern victory leads to problems such as:
How should the nation be reunited?
What system of labor should replace slavery?
What would be the status of the former slaves?
In January 1863, President Abraham Lincoln announces the Emancipation Proclamation.
Authorization to enlist black soldiers.
At end of war 200.000 black soldiers stake claim to citizenship.
Demand of land ownership.
Reunion of families separated under slavery.
Establishment of their own churches and schools.
Demand for equal civil and political rights.
African-Americans become active agents in shaping reconstruction.
In 1965 President Andrew Johnson puts into effect his own reconstruction plan which was overturned by the congress since it looked as a condition similar to slavery. The North abandons its commitment to protect the rights of the former slaves.
White southerners resort to violent opposition:
Corruption and misgovernment caused by allowing blacks to take part in politics.
Increase of the south’s system of racial segregation and denying the vote to blacks.
White supremacy restored throughout the south.
Groups such as Ku Klux Klan establish a reign of terror assaulting and murdering local Republican leaders.
New legislatures pass the Black Codes limiting former slaves’ legal rights and economic options.
**Not until the mid-twentieth century would the nation again attempt to come to terms with the political and social agenda of Reconstruction.
Booker T. Washington
W.E.B. Dubois: 2-23-1868 to 8-27-1963 (95 years).
Booker T. Washington: 4-5-1865 to 11-14-1915 (59 years).
The idea at the center of Booker T. Washington's thinking was "race relations," a proper historical understanding of which explains a great deal.
Washington became a pawn for whites rather than a democratically chosen black leader; the overwhelming success of Jim Crow; and the ultimate character of the Civil Rights Movement.
Lynching’s were allowed and used.
During this time period the main controversial idea was racial uplift and education for the African American and the means of how to go about doing that.
Both men sought to define the best means to improve the conditions of the post-Civil War African American community.
Increased crime due to the Civil War, including competition for jobs in industry and the mass exodus from the farmland and the immigration to the cities .
President of Tuskegee, which provided education for all African American teachers.
Believed that African Americans would eventually gain participation in society by showing themselves to be responsible and reliable American citizens.
Educated African Americans in skills that would help them to “conform” to white society which would help them to gain freedom. And since they had just been granted emancipation, they could not expect too much at once.
Believed that African Americans should be useful to regain freedom.
“ In all things purely social we can be as separate as the fingers, yet as the hand in all things essential to mutual progress.” – Meaning that an individual may prosper in their goals but when grouped together with the whites more goals can be accomplished, which some people were critical of.
Would use any means necessary to gain freedom for African Americans. Such as protests, violence, scholarships, propaganda, integration, cultural and economic separatism, etc.
Believed that African Americans should demand their freedom.
“ Talented Tenth” was an influential article written by W.E.B. Dubois and published in September 1903. Du Bois used the term "the talented tenth" to describe the likelihood of one in ten black men becoming leaders of their race in the world, through methods such as continuing their education, writing books, or becoming directly involved in social change. He believed they needed a classical liberal education to reach their true destiny as what would in the 20th century be called public intellectuals.
- “Children learn more from what you are than what you teach” (1897).
“ Education is that whole system of human training within and without the school house walls, which molds and develops men.”
When Booker T. Washington died, in 1915 the Tuskegee Institute boasted 100 buildings, 1,500 students, a variety of programs and $2 million. By then Tuskegee's endowment had grown to over $1.5 million, compared to the initial $2,000 annual appropriation.
The institute illustrates Washington's aspirations for his race. For during his lifetime, many African Americans who were former slaves and who did not have an education were provided with opportunities to learn vocational skills and obtain an education. He thought former slaves would gain acceptance through education and financial independence. His theory was, that by providing these skills, African Americans would play their part in society thus gaining acceptance by white Americans. He believed that they would eventually gain full civil rights by showing themselves to be responsible, reliable American citizens.
In 1905, Du Bois helped to convene the Niagara Movement. The movement grew out of a meeting of 29 black leaders who gathered to discuss segregation and black political rights. These included equality of economic and educational opportunities for blacks, and end to segregation, and the prohibition of discrimination in courts, public facilities, and trade unions. This particular movement led the way to the formation of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
Dubois’ was a pioneer in that he helped open doors that were ordinarily closed to blacks (ex. the case Harvard University, first black to receive a Doctorate Degree).
W.E.B. Dubois. (January 2008) Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved October 6, 2008, from http://www.wikipedia.org .
Booker T. Washington. (n.d.) Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved October 1, 2008, from http://www.wikipedia.org .
Smith, Arthur. (2008). Booker T Washington's Influence on the Course of African-American Life Through Education. Enzine Articles. Retrieved October 12, 2008, from http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Arthur_Smith .
Franceschi, Gloricelly. (2000). W.E.B. Dubois. National Louis University. Retrieved October 12, 2008, from http://www.nl.edu/academics/cas/ace/resources/webdubois.cfm .