U.S. History II
Reconstruction began to take place as the civil war was ending. Although some people felt the end of the civil war was the beginning of peace, it was not. The end of the Civil War marked the beginning of a new struggle, the struggle of reconstruction.
During the Civil War when the outlook began to foresee a northern victory the thoughts about reunification rapidly increased. This is when the question of reconstruction became valid. There was now a battle over who had the authority to devise a plan and how would that plan be carried out. In time many plans were constructed, all which eventually failed. Thus the enormous failures and economic injustice some positive goals of reconstruction did prevail.
Without strict constitutional guide lines to determine reconstruction, the Constitutional silence caused the president, Abraham Lincoln, and Congress to wage a bitter fight over how best to reconstruct the Union.
The North held a split decision on this question.
President Abraham Lincoln in December of 1863 issued Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction for those areas's of the Confederacy occupied by Union armies. In doing this it offered a pardon, with some exceptions, to any Confederate who would swear to support the Constitution and also, the Union. Once a group in a conquered state equal in number to one tenth of that state's total (10%) vote in the presidential election of 1860 took the ordered oath and made arrangements to abolish slavery, Lincoln would then grant that government executive recognition. This plan became known as the 10% plan. In Lincoln's plan for reconstruction he wanted peace with the south and his primary intend was to restore a national unity, he stated "With charity for all, and malice toward none." Lincoln sought to restore the...