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The Ordeal of Reconstruction 1865-1877
The Problems of Peace
All rebel (Confederate) leaders were pardoned by President Johnson in 1868.
Freedmen Define Freedom
-Emancipation took effect unevenly in different parts of the conquered Confederacy.
-The church became the focus of black community life in the years following emancipation.
- Blacks formed their own churches pastured by their ownministers.
-Education also arose for the blacks due to the emancipation proclamation. New opportunities for blacks
The Freedmen's Bureau
-Because many freedmen (slavery) were untrained, uneducated, without property or money, and with little knowledge of how to survive as free people, Congress created the Freedmen's Bureau on March 3, 1865.
- intended to provide clothing, medical care,food, and education to both freedmen and white refugees. Union general Oliver O. Howard led the bureau. expired in 1872.
Johnson: The Tailor President
-Andrew Johnson was elected to Congress and refused to secede with his own state of Tennessee.
-Johnson was made Vice Democrat to Lincoln's Union Party in 1864 in order to gain support from the War Democrats and other pro-Southern elements
-Hewas a Southerner who did not understand the North and a Democrat who had not been accepted by the Republicans.
Presidential Reconstruction
-In 1863, Lincoln stated his "10 percent" Reconstruction plan which stated that a state could be reintegrated into the Union when 10% of its voters in the presidential election of 1860 had taken an oath of allegiance to the United States and pledged to abideby emancipation. Then a formal state government would be constructed within the state, and the state would be re-admitted into the Union.
-Due to Republican fears over the restoration of planter aristocracy and the possible re-enslavement of blacks, Congress passed the Wade-Davis Bill in 1864. It required that 50% of a state's voters take the oath of allegiance and it demanded strongersafeguards for emancipation. President Lincoln refused to sign the bill.-
-President Johnson issued his own Reconstruction plan on May 29, 1865. It called for special state conventions which were required to: repeal the decrees of secession, repudiate all Confederate debts, and ratify the slave-freeing 13th Amendment.
The Baleful Black Codes
-The Black Codes was a series of laws designed to regulatethe affairs of the emancipated slaves. Mississippi passed the first such law in November 1865.
-The Black Codes aimed to ensure a stable and subservient labor force.
-Blacks were forced to continue to work the plantations after their emancipation due to the system of "sharecropping." Plantation owners would rent out pieces of their land to blacks and make the cost of rent higher than thereturn the land produced. Unable to repay the debts, blacks began to "jump" their contracts.
-The codes imposed harsh penalties on blacks who "jumped" their labor contracts, some of which usually forced the blacks to work for the same employer for one year. The codes also sought to restore the pre-emancipation system of race relations. The codes forbade a black to serve on a jury or to vote. TheBlack Codes mocked the idea of freedom
-The Republicans were strongly opposed to the Black Codes.
Congressional Reconstruction
-1865, Southern states represented themselves in Congress with former Confederate generals and colonels.
- This time, the South would have much more control in Congress due to the fact that slaves were now counted as a whole person, not just 3/5; giving the South alarger population. Republicans feared that the South would take control of Congress.
-On December 4, 1865, Republicans shut the door in the face of the newly-elected Southern delegates.
-President Johnson announced on December 6, 1865 that the Southern states had met his conditions and that the Union was now restored - this statement angered the Republicans.
Johnson Clashes with Congress...