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The Era of Reconstruction in American History and its Aftermath - Essay Example

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The period began during the civil war and ended in 1877. American reconstruction realized drastic moves to exercise interracial democracy. It remains pertinent in the American history since…
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The Era of Reconstruction in American History and its Aftermath
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The Era of Reconstruction in American History and its Aftermath

Download file to see previous pages... The proposal culminated in the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment, which formally abolished slavery in America. After the demise of Abraham Lincoln, who was the champion of reconstruction, Andrew Johnson continued his policies and vowed to abolish slavery altogether and reconstruct America.
Various states moved fast to institute fundamental laws that curtailed the full acquisition of the rights of slaves. Mississippi quickly instituted the anti-black codes limiting the free movement of the freed slaves (Franklin 210). The Civil Rights Act occasioned a move by the Congress further to assert the changing status of former slaves. The Civil Rights Act conferred on former slaves the right to own and transfer property and the right to equal treatment as the white Americans. However, even with the ratification of the civil rights act, the definition of a “citizen” still remained obscured. In an affirmative move, the Congress passed the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution in 1867.
The fundamental aim of the 14th amendment was to confer liberty and citizenship to the freed slaves. Prior formation of the civil rights act, various states employed various attempts to limit the freedom of former slaves. For instance, Louisiana adopted the grandfather clause that only allowed men to vote if their grandfathers were eligible voters prior to the civil war. The blacks in the south responded to these limitations by the states through mass migrations to the urban northern states. However, in a tactical move to stifle the interests of freed slaves, Washington in his Atlanta Compromise asserted the need for the slaves to engage in economic production and disenfranchise from social agitation. Du Bois philosophically attacked Washington for his stance against the freed slaves. In his “the souls of Black folks,” Du Bois agitated not only for education but equal access to education for the blacks (Franklin 254). He strongly expressed ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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Book Review - A Short History of Reconstruction - By Eric Foner
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