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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 ofLincoln’s proposal•1866-67: Congressional plan: 10% plan with 14th Amendment•1867-77:Military Reconstruction(Congress):14thAmendmentplus black suffrage that was later establishednationwide by the15thAmendment.•Compromise of 1877: ends ReconstructionIntroduction:What was Reconstruction?Attempt to achieve national reunification andreconciliation after the Civil War and to improve the status of formerslaves (freedmen).The reality is that it was enormously difficult to satisfy both thesegoals.-- "Politics is the art of the possible."The North prevailed during the Civil War. The South prevailed afterthe war.I. Four main questions vis-à-vis Reconstruction of the post-Civil WarSouth: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, orCongress?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 appropriatelegislation.Use space below fornotes
IV. Rebuilding the SouthA. Richmond, Charleston, and Atlanta were destroyedB. Economically the South lay in ruins1. Banks ruined by runaway inflation2. Factories were closed or destroyed3. Transportation system was devastated.C. Agriculture1. Cotton fields now fields of weeds2. Livestock gone after northern invasion3. Agricultural output did not return to 1860 level until 1870; muchfrom new SouthwestD. Planter aristocrats devastated1. Value in slaves disappeared2. Many mansions destroyed or ruinedV. African Americans in the immediate post-Civil War SouthA.Freedmen’s Bureau(created in 1865 by Congress)1. Headed byGen. Oliver O. Howard(later founded and served aspresident of Howard University in Washington D.C.)-- Members included many Northerners including formerabolitionists who risked their lives to help freedmen in theSouth; 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 andpoor whitesa. Taught about 200,000 blacks to read; many freedmen eager toread Bibleb. Negotiated labor agreements between freedmen and planters.4. Authorized to provide "40 acres and a mule"from confiscated orabandoned land to black settlers.