After the Civil War: Reconstruction 1865-1877 with Bibliography

Essay by JiggawifeyUniversity, Bachelor's November 2004

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Reconstruction was the period after the Civil War in which many changes were undergone in the north and the south in order to restore the union. It lasted approximately 12 years from 1865-1877. The South had suffered the destruction of their factories, railroads, and mainly their slave-worked farms. The north suffered mainly from the political turmoil that was left in the aftermath of the


There were many phases of reconstruction consisting of Lincoln's Phase,Johnson's Phase, and the Radical Republican Phase. While Lincoln did not live long enough to actually go through reconstruction, he lived only five days after

the war. Lincoln began this. Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation was the beginning of Reconstruction in the U.S. The Emancipation Proclamation freed all of the slaves in the Confederate States still in rebellion but did not free those of the border-states. The Proclamation did not actually free the slaves in the south. By 1865, all Republicans had agreed that slavery must be destroyed

permanently. To do so, Congress approved the Thirteenth Amendment that abolished slavery.

Reconstruction of the governments in the south led to the end of slavery. Though Lincoln had gotten only 8 of the southern states to ratify the Amendment,President Johnson was successfully able to get the majority to ratify it, but

all did not agree upon black suffrage. The new state governments passed a series of laws known as black codes, which harshly restricted the rights of the newly

freed slaves. The codes varied, they included laws, "under which blacks who were viewed as unemployed could be hired out as forced labor; apprenticing laws, under which children without proper care, as defined by the courts, could be bound out to white employers; and severe limitations on black occupations and property holding."(Reconstruction) The Radical Republicans helped rebuild the south. The South's...