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8.5 Reconstruction: 1865-1877Overview of principal Reconstruction proposals and plans:•1864-65: Lincoln’s 10% plan•1865: 13thAmendment•1865-66: Presidential Reconstruction: Johnson’s version of Lincoln’s proposal•1866-67: Congressional plan: 10% plan with 14th Amendment•1867-77: Military Reconstruction(Congress): 14th Amendmentplus black suffrage that was later established nationwide by the 15thAmendment.•Compromise of 1877: ends ReconstructionIntroduction:What was Reconstruction?Attempt to achieve national reunification and reconciliation after the Civil War and to improve the status of former slaves (freedmen). The reality is that it was enormously difficult to satisfy both these goals. -- "Politics is the art of the possible." The North prevailed during the Civil War. The South prevailed after the war.I. Four main questions vis-à-vis Reconstruction of the post-Civil War South: 1. How to rebuild the South after its destruction during the Civil War? 2. What would be the condition of African Americans in the South? 3. How would the South be reintegrated into the Union? 4. Who would control the process: Southern states, president, or Congress?II. What should be done with the leaders of the Confederacy? A. Jefferson Davis imprisoned for two years (others as well); eventually released. B. President Johnson pardoned all rebel leaders in December 1868. III. 13th Amendment (Ratified in December, 1865) A. Slavery abolishedB. "Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. Use space below for notes
IV. Rebuilding the South A. Richmond, Charleston, and Atlanta were destroyed B. Economically the South lay in ruins 1. Banks ruined by runaway inflation 2. Factories were closed or destroyed 3. Transportation system was devastated. C. Agriculture 1. Cotton fields now fields of weeds 2. Livestock gone after northern invasion 3. Agricultural output did not return to 1860 level until 1870; much from new Southwest D. Planter aristocrats devastated 1. Value in slaves disappeared 2. Many mansions destroyed or ruined V. African Americans in the immediate post-Civil War South A. Freedmen’s Bureau (created in 1865 by Congress) 1. Headed by Gen. Oliver O. Howard(later founded and served as president of Howard University in Washington D.C.) -- Members included many Northerners including former abolitionists who risked their lives to help freedmen in the South; one of several northern groups derisively called"carpetbaggers"by white southern Democrats. 2. Purpose: To help unskilled, uneducated, poverty-stricken ex-slaves to survive3. Provided food, clothing, medicine & education to ex-slaves and poor whites a. Taught about 200,000 blacks to read; many freedmen eager to read Bible b. Negotiated labor agreements between freedmen and planters. 4. Authorized to provide "40 acres and a mule"from confiscated or abandoned land to black settlers.