Chapter 15 - ReconstructionHope people wanted1. Blacks and the Meaning of Freedom African-Americans’ understanding of freedom was shaped by their experience as slaves and observation of the free society around them. Former slaves’ ideas of freedom were directly related to land ownershipEmancipation increased the power of black men within the family. Black women withdrew from work as field laborers and house servants to the domestic sphere. Set backs That OccurredThe Failure of Land Reform President Andrew Johnson ordered nearly all land in federal hands returned to its former owners. Because no land distribution took place, the vast majority of rural freed people remained poor and without property during Reconstruction. Sharecropping came to dominate the cotton South and much of the tobacco belt. Sharecropping initially arose as a compromise between blacks’ desire for land and planters’ desire for labor discipline. Amendments that PassedPre & Post ReconstructionPre & Post Reconstruction in the southKey Wordsthe Freedman's Bureau:An agency established by Congress in March 1865 to establish schools, provide aid to the poor and aged, settle disputes between whites and blacks, and secure for former slaves and white Unionists equal treatment before the courts. Sharecropping: Type of farm tenancy that developed after the Civil War in which landless workers—often former slaves— farmed land in exchange for farm supplies and a share of the crop.Crop-lien system:Merchants extended credit to tenants based on their future crops, but high interest rates and the uncertainties of farming often led to inescapable debts. Civil Rights Bill of 1866:Along with the Fourteenth Amendment, guaranteed the rights of citizenship to former slaves.Fourteenth Amendment: Guaranteed rights of citizenship to former slaves, in words similar to those of the Civil Rights Act of 1866.