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Political reonstruction in the State of Florida after the Civil War - Essay Example

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Instructor Date Political Reconstruction in the State of Florida after the Civil War Florida like other Southern States was affected and devastated by the civil war. This war resulted in death of war veterans, injury of people and destruction of property…
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Political reonstruction in the State of Florida after the Civil War
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Download file to see previous pages However, this objective of reconstruction did not realize the anticipated goals, instead, the end of reconstruction resulted in the denial of civil rights to all African-Americans in the Southern States, including Florida. This era of reconstruction is significant, as it has shaped the history of the United States. Different people today have different views about the events in this era. Similarly, different authors have written their varying opinions and facts concerning the reconstruction period, bringing out their personal convictions about the period. Nonetheless, this essay focuses on the different views by various authors on the political reconstruction in the United States, and specifically, the State of Florida. Ayers in his book, A History of the American South 1877-1906, notes that, between the end of reconstruction in 1877 and the 1906 Atlanta race riot, the American South was marked with significant changes in its social, economic, and political spheres. Economically, the South witnessed intensive industrialization and urbanization, and the domination of the railroad, while socially, pop culture emerged, including music and modern literature, and the emergence of new religious groups. However, Ayers notes that politically, the South was characterized by the elements of segregation, disfranchisement, the populist revolt, and the start of progressivism. Power was based on either persuasion or coercion (3). Florida experienced a myriad of political changes. Ayers traces the beginning of the new era in the South to the 1870s, when the conservative democrats took power in Southern states, including Florida. Florida played an equal role as other Southern states in redrawing political boundaries between the South and whole nation. However, in early 1890s, there was witnessed the greatest revolt of populism, which played a significant role in political reconstruction of Florida. Farmers in Florida were affected negatively and were plunged in an economic depression. Although Florida experienced slight industrial growth, its farmers lived with many uncertainties. Ayer notes that after the Republicans’ succession in the South, they aimed at forming a political alliance that would include former slaves and a few white people that were influential (5). However, their opinions and preferences on issues such as land redistribution, elections, civil rights, and educational policies varied. They later established an alliance comprising former slaves, former Northerners, and former unionists, with an objective of ensuring the economic prosperity and equal rights for the Southerners. However, this diversity became a major challenge to this alliance as most members and the voters defected with instances of unjust treatment. Eventually, the North dissociated itself from the South and this slimmed down the probability of successful reconstruction in both the North and South, without external intervention (5). Later, the conservative Democrats “redeemed” many Southern States, including Florida, therefore displacing the Republicans out of power. However, in 1877, the elections in Florida saw Democrats pronounced winners, and this brought a new meaning to the reconstruction in the South. In Florida and other Southern States, the influential, educated, and wealthy, white people rose to demand for power, which they thought they were the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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