Source: America , Brief Second Edition, by George B. Tindall and David E. Shi, W.W. Norton & Company
1862 – Lincoln named military governors for Tennessee, Arkansas, and Louisiana December 1863 – issued Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction under which any Rebel state could form a Union government whenever a number equal to 10% of those who voted in 1860 took an oath of allegiance to the Constitution and Union and received a presidential pardon. Congress refused to recognize loyal governments that appeared in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Louisiana under this plan. Radical Republicans – desired to see a sweeping transformation of the South; they maintained that Congress, not the President, should supervise the reconstruction program.
1864 – Wade-Davis Bill: much more stringent than Lincoln’s plan, required majority of white males citizens to swear allegiance and only those who swore and “ironclad” oath that they’d always been loyal could vote. Lincoln exercised a pocket veto on this bill. March 1865 – Congress establishes the War Department’s Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands to provide for the destitute and suffering; Bureau agents were entrusted with negotiating labor contracts, providing medical care, and setting up schools.
A War Democrat from Tennessee who had been put on the Union ticket as a gesture of unity in 1864. Johnson’s very loyalty to the Union sprang from a strict adherence to the Constitution. He argued that “there is no such thing as reconstruction. Those states have not gone out of the Union. Therefore reconstruction is unnecessary.” – May, 1865
Southern Intransigence New Southern governments were too filled with Rebel leaders for Unionists to tolerate. Passage of repressive Black Codes indicated their intentions of preserving the trappings of slavery as nearly as possible.
Thaddeus Stevens – House floor leader from Pennsylvania insisted the “whole fabric of southern society must be changed.” “I am for negro suffrage in every rebel state. If it be just, it should not be denied; if it be necessary, it should be adopted; if it be a punishment to traitors, they deserve it.” Charles Sumner – Senator from Massachusetts argued “Massachusetts could govern Georgia better than Georgia could govern herself.” Most congressmen embraced the “forfeited rights theory,” which held that the states continued to exist, but by the acts of secession and war had forfeited “all civil and political rights under the constitution.”
Congressional elections of 1866 gave the Republicans well over two-thirds majority in each house and the ability to override any presidential vetoes. March 2, 1867 – (two days before old Congress expired) passed three basic laws of reconstruction over Johnson’s vetoes Military Reconstruction Act – prescribed conditions under which new southern state governments could be formed Command of the Army Act – designed to block obstruction from the president by requiring all orders from the commander-in-chief go through the general of the army, and then to U.S. Grant (who the Radicals trusted) Tenure of Office Act – required the consent of the Senate for the president to remove any office holder whose appointment the Senate had to confirm in the first place Before the end of 1867 new elections had been held in all the states but Texas. March 27, 1868 – Texas v. White (1869) the Supreme Court affirmed the notion of an “indestructible Union;” the same day of this ruling, Congress removed the power of the Supreme Court to review cases arising out of the Military Reconstruction Act using its power to define the Court’s appellate jurisdiction.
The Fourteenth Amendment June, 1866 – passed by Congress July, 1868 – Ratified Reaffirmed state and federal citizenship for all persons, regardless of race, born or naturalized in the U.S. Forbade any state from abridging the “privileges and immunities” of citizens Forbade any state from depriving any person “due process of law” Forbade denial of “the equal protection of the laws” Voided all Confederate debts
The Impeachment and Trial of Johnson (1868) Johnson continued to pardon former Confederates in wholesale lots. The occasion for impeachment arose when Johnson deliberately violated the Tenure of Office Act to test its constitutionality. He suspended Secretary of War Stanton and replaced him with General Grant. Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase presided over the trial from March 5 th – May 26 th , 1868 Johnson was not convicted (by one vote) when several Republican senators broke ranks with their party because they feared the consequences of removing a president essentially for political rather than criminal reasons.
Republican Rule in the South June, 1868 – Congress agreed that seven states had met the conditions for readmission (all but Virginia, Mississippi, and Texas) and then rescinded Georgia’s admission when the state legislature expelled twenty eight black members and seated some former Confederate leaders. Georgia was compelled to ratify the Fifteenth Amendment before being admitted in July 1870.
Blacks in Southern Politics Beverly Nash, a black delegate from South Carolina said in 1868 – “I believe, my friends and fellow-citizens, we are not prepared for this suffrage. But we can learn. Give a man tools and let him commence to use them, and in time he will learn a trade. So it is with voting.” Blacks served in every state legislature, (comprising a majority in both houses in South Carolina for 2 years), there were two Negro senators – Hiram Revels and Blanche K. Bruce, both from Mississippi, and 14 black members of the House.
Carpetbaggers and Scalawags “ Carpetbaggers” generally referred to northern opportunists who allegedly came south to reap political spoils. Frequently they were Union veterans seeing economic opportunities. Many were lawyers, businessmen, teachers, social workers and preachers. “ Scalawags” were southern white Republicans, most of whom had opposed secession, some of which were crass opportunists, but some, like James A. Longstreet, were distinguished figures who supported changes.
The Republican Record Surprisingly good record – state constitutions including universal manhood suffrage, reapportioning more nearly according to population, and making more state offices elective; establishing the first state school systems, moor attention to poor relief and institutions for the disadvantaged or handicapped, public roads and buildings built or repaired. However, some systemic corruption was practiced with government officials taking their “cut” of government contracts let at high prices.
White Terror Most southern whites remained resistant to the idea of blacks as citizens or even free agents. The prototype terrorist group, Ku Klux Klan, was first organized in 1866 in Pulaski, Tennessee and spread rapidly through the south. Congress struck back with the Enforcement Acts to protect black voters. Penalties on persons interfering with any citizen’s right to vote Elections of congressmen under surveillance by federal election supervisors and marshals Outlawed the characteristic activities of the Klan (conspiracies, wearing disguises, resisting officers, intimidating officials) The most important effect of the Klan was to weaken Negro and Republican morale, and the strengthen northern weariness with the whole situation.
Conservative Resurgence Westward expansion, Indian wars, industrial development and political controversy over the tariff and the currency distracted attention from southern outrages. Democrats used persuasion and chicanery to wrest control back to the Democrats.
THE GRANT YEARS Grant’s Election Less political experience than any other man to have held the office except Zachary Taylor, and less political judgement Called the “Lion of Vicksburg” Grant was wooed by both parties but went in with the Republicans when he had a falling out with President Johnson Party platform endorsed Radical Reconstruction, urged payment of the nation’s war debt in gold rather than greenbacks, Grant’s slogan was “Let us have peace.” Swept the electoral college 214-80 but the popular vote was much closer indicating the enduring nature of party loyalties Although personally honest, Grant was dazzled by men of wealth and unaccountably loyal to greedy subordinates who betrayed his trust. He was uncomfortable around intellectuals and impatient with idealists.
Reform and Scandal Jay Gould and Jim Fisk attempted to corner the gold market and Grants order of September 24, 1869 to the Treasury to sell a large quantity of gold burst the speculation bubble on “Black Friday.” Grant was seen publicly with Gould and Fisk. Credit Mobilier – a construction company milked the Union Pacific Railroad for exorbitant fees to leave the shareholders holding the bag. Grant’s Secretary of War has accepted bribes from Indian traders at army posts in the West. Post office contracts went to carriers who offered the highest kickbacks “ Whiskey Ring” bribed tax collectors to bilk the government of millions There’s no evidence that Grant was personally involved in any of these scandals, but his poor choices in friends and associates earned him widespread censure
Panic and Redemption Contraction of the money supply and the reckless overexpansion of the railroads into sparsely settled areas helped precipitate a financial crisis. In 1873 some 25 railroads defaulted on their interest payments. When the investment firm of Jay Cooke and Co. went bankrupt on September 18 th , panic ensued setting off a depression which lasted for six years. To help stem the deflationary spiral, the Treasury reissued $26 million in greenbacks previously withdrawn. By 1874 Grant vetoed an attempt to issue more greenbacks and then the Resumption Act of 1875 was passed – resuming the paying of gold to customers who turned in their greenbacks on January 1, 1879.
The Compromise of 1877 Because of the taint of scandal on Grant and others, the Republican convention turned to Rutherford B. Hayes, an advocate of hard money, to run for the presidency. The campaign between Hayes and Samuel J. Tilden, a millionaire corporation lawyer from New York, generated no burning issues. Both favored restoring conservative rule in the south. Fraud and intimidation were perpetuated on both sides of the election. After months of impasse, a special Electoral Commission was set up giving Hayes the victory by 185 to 184. The Republicans had promised that if Hayes was elected, he would withdraw federal troops from Louisiana and South Carolina allowing the Republican governments there to collapse. In return, the Democrats promised to withdraw their opposition to Hayes, to accept in good faith the Reconstruction amendments, and to refrain from reprisals against Republicans in the South.
The End of Reconstruction After Hayes took office, most of these promises were either renounced or forgotten. Hayes did withdraw federal troops and the republican governments in Louisiana and South Carolina collapsed. Civil rights for blacks crumbled under the pressure of white rule in the South and the force of Supreme Court decisions narrowing the application of the 14 th and 15 th amendments. Reconstruction did not provide social equality or substantial economic opportunities for blacks, but it did set the stage for future transformations.
Reconstruction 1863 77
Reconstruction: North and South
The burning questions... Should the Confederate leaders be tried for treason? How were new governments to be formed? How and at whose expense was the South’s economy to be rebuilt? What was to be done with the freed slaves? Were they to be given land? Social equality? Voting rights?
Lincoln’s Plan Lincoln was interested in providing the easiest method for Rebel states to re-enter the Union. 1863 - the Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction provided any Rebel state could form a Union government whenever 10% of the number who voted in 1860 took an oath of allegiance to the Constitution.
Congress’s Response Refused to recognize loyal governments that appeared in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Louisiana under Lincoln’s plan. The Radical Republicans desired a sweeping transformation of the South, maintaining that Congress, not the President, should supervise reconstruction.
President Lincoln’s Plan <ul><li>1864 “Lincoln Governments” formed in LA, TN, AR </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ loyal assemblies” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They were weak and dependent on the Northern army for their survival. </li></ul></ul>
Wade-Davis Bill (1864) <ul><li>Required 50% of the number of 1860 voters to take an “iron clad” oath of allegiance (swearing they had never voluntarily aided the rebellion ). </li></ul><ul><li>Required a state constitutional convention before the election of state officials. </li></ul><ul><li>Enacted specific safeguards of freedmen’s liberties. </li></ul>Senator Benjamin Wade (R-OH) Congressman Henry W. Davis (R-MD)
Lincoln’s plans for a quick and undramatic reconstruction were cut short by John Wilkes Booth.
Freedmen’s Bureau (1865) <ul><li>Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands. </li></ul><ul><li>Many former northern abolitionists risked their lives to help southern freedmen. </li></ul><ul><li>Called “carpetbaggers” by white southern Democrats. </li></ul>
Freedmen’s Bureau Seen Through Southern Eyes Plenty to eat and nothing to do.
President Andrew Johnson <ul><li>Jacksonian Democrat. </li></ul><ul><li>Anti-Aristocrat. </li></ul><ul><li>White Supremacist. </li></ul><ul><li>Agreed with Lincoln that states had never legally left the Union. </li></ul>Damn the negroes! I am fighting these traitorous aristocrats, their masters!
Johnson’s Plan May 29, 1865 – Proclamation of Amnesty added to the list those Lincoln had excluded from pardon everybody with taxable property worth more than $20,000 on the presumption that wealthy planters and merchants had led the South into secession. But by the end of the year he had issued 13,000 pardons.
Southern Intransigence The new Southern governments were too filled with Rebel leaders for Unionists to tolerate. Passage of repressive Black Codes indicated their intentions of preserving the trappings of slavery as nearly as possible.
Thaddeus Stevens Charles Sumner The Radicals and Reconstruction
Reconstructing the South The Triumph of Congressional Reconstruction Military Reconstruction Act Command of the Army Act Tenure of Office Act The elections of 1866 gave the Republicans more than the two-thirds majority in both houses needed to override any veto. In 1867 they passed three basic laws of reconstruction:
Radical Plan for Readmission <ul><li>Civil authorities in the territories were subject to military supervision. </li></ul><ul><li>Required new state constitutions, including black suffrage and ratification of the 13 th and 14 th Amendments. </li></ul><ul><li>In March, 1867, Congress passed an act that authorized the military to enroll eligible black voters and begin the process of constitution making. </li></ul>
Congress Breaks with the President <ul><li>Congress bars Southern Congressional delegates. </li></ul><ul><li>Joint Committee on Reconstruction created. </li></ul><ul><li>February, 1866 President vetoed the Freedmen’s Bureau bill. </li></ul><ul><li>March, 1866 Johnson vetoed the 1866 Civil Rights Act. </li></ul><ul><li>Congress passed both bills over Johnson’s vetoes 1 st in U. S. history!! </li></ul>
Reconstruction Acts of 1867 <ul><li>Military Reconstruction Act </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Restart Reconstruction in the 10 Southern states that refused to ratify the 14 th Amendment. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Divide the 10 “unreconstructed states” into 5 military districts. </li></ul></ul>
Reconstruction Acts of 1867 <ul><li>Command of the Army Act </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The President must issue all Reconstruction orders through the commander of the military. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tenure of Office Act </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The President could not remove any officials [esp. Cabinet members] without the Senate’s consent, if the position originally required Senate approval. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Designed to protect radical members of Lincoln’s government. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A question of the constitutionality of this law. </li></ul></ul></ul>Edwin Stanton
14 th <ul><li>Reaffirmed state and federal citizenship for all persons, regardless of race </li></ul><ul><li>Gave citizens the equal protection of the laws </li></ul><ul><li>States could not deny due process of the laws </li></ul>
The Impeachment and Trial of Johnson Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase Edwin M. Stanton U.S. Grant
Republican Rule in the South June, 1868 - Congress agreed that 7 states had met the conditions for readmission but then rescinded Georgia’s admission when they expelled 28 black legislators and seated former Confederate leaders. Ratification of the 15 th Amendment required for readmission.
15th Amendment States may not deny any citizen the vote on grounds of: Race Color Previous condition of servitude
"Carpetbaggers" and "Scalawags" Northerners, many of whom were teachers, lawyers, social workers, preachers & businessmen. James Longstreet Some were crass opportunists, but others supported change.
The Republican Record <ul><li>Universal manhood suffrage </li></ul><ul><li>Made more state offices elective </li></ul><ul><li>Established 1st state school systems </li></ul><ul><li>Help for handicapped or disadvantaged </li></ul><ul><li>Built or repaired public roads and buildings </li></ul><ul><li>However, some systemic corruption was practiced </li></ul>
White Terror Ku Klux Klan Founded in 1866 in Pulaski, Tenn. Quickly spread through the South
Conservative Resurgence Distractions elsewhere helped Democrats to regain control.
The Grant Years The “Lion of Vicksburg” had less political experience than any man except Taylor, and less political judgement. Although wooed by both parties, Grant’s falling out with Johnson caused him to go Republican.
Grant was personally honest, however, he was dazzled by men of wealth and uncomfortable around intellectuals. Along with his political inexperience and poor political judgement, Grant’s term was ripe for corruption. He tended to remain loyal to greedy subordinates who betrayed his trust.
Jay Gould Jim Fisk Attempted to corner the gold market. Grant’s order of September 24, 1869 to sell gold from the Treasury burst the speculation bubble on “Black Friday.”
Panic and Redemption The Treasury was granted discretion by Congress to gradually retire the $400 million in greenbacks issued during the Civil War. But contraction of the money supply and reckless over-expansion of the the railroads helped to precipitate a financial crisis in 1873.
Compromise of 1877 Rutherford B. Hayes Samuel J. Tilden Republicans promised that if Hayes was elected he would withdraw federal troops from Louisiana and South Carolina; Democrats withdrew opposition to Hayes
OF RECONSTRUCTION After Hayes took office, most of the promises were renounced or forgotten. Reconstruction did not provide social equality or substantial economic gains for blacks, but it set the stage for the future.