Civil War reconstruction.

Essay by borracho151 April 2003

download word file, 6 pages 4.8

Through the period of Reconstruction a grassroots movement spread throughout South; a movement to rewrite history to a way that is more favorable to the Southern Cause and efforts. This movement has been called both the Lost Cause and the Reconciliationist movement, as the name simply changed over time. The Lost Cause movement began with prominent figures of the Confederacy attempting to further the ideals they fought for in the Civil War, in doing so hopefully legitimizing them. This idea was further by both women and veterans' groups throughout the South. From there it spread to magazines and journals until the concept was adopted by the Democratic Party and shifted to the Reconciliationist movement. The reason for the spread of this movement comes from many factors. The first of which is a general feeling pervading society of desiring to forget about the horrors of the war. For many Southerners the greatest lure of the Lost Cause movement was in the fact that in this movement they could transform what truly happened into an idealistic fight defending their main beliefs.

It, "is that Southerners found they could transform loss on the battlefield into a reunion on terms largely of their own choosing." In remolding history, Southerners tried to convince people around the country that the war was not fought over slavery, but there were more moral and respectable grounds for their fight. Surprisingly this idea was able to catch on as people from around the country accepted ideas of reconciliation and reunion. Many people struggled to forget the horrors they witnessed and remembered from the Civil War, and the reconciliationist movement gave them their chance to do that.

The movement which led to the forming of the Lost Cause ideology was grounded in a radical backlash to Reconstruction. At the start...