Reconstruction In The Post Civil War Era

667 words - 3 pages

After the Civil War, the South lay in ruins. Streets were lined with the lifeless bodies of Confederate soldiers whilst the buildings smoldered right down to their foundations. In an effort to restore the South to its former charm, the U.S. government plunged the country into what is now called the Reconstruction Era. President Lincoln’s approach towards reconstruction, known as the 10% Plan, was rivaled by the collaborative effort of Henry Davis and Benjamin Wade; known as the Wade-Davis Bill. Both plans never made it into effect, but they set a precedent for more rivalries to come.
President Johnson’s election did not serve any justice towards the effort of Reconstruction. He was a “Southern Sympathizer” who did all in his power to pardon all Confederate soldiers as well as suppress the rights of newly emancipated African Americans. Going against Congress, Johnson implemented his own plan on allowing southern states back into the Union; under which the succeeded states needed to nullify secession and abolish slavery. Johnson also agreed to not pay any war debts to the Confederacy. Johnson also allowed Confederate soldiers to hold government positions and he oversaw the removal of all African American soldiers from the South. Feeding into the obvious prejudice of African Americans through President Johnson, the southern state legislatures implemented the Black Codes. These restrictions severely limited the freedoms of African Americans. In retaliation, Congress passed the Civil Acts Rights Act which stated that all people born in the U.S. are citizens; and this included African Americans. Johnson initially vetoed this bill, but Congress overrode it. This is just one example of Johnson’s many disagreements with Congress. At that time, Congress also passed the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, which abolished slavery, made everyone equal under the law, and gave African Americans the right to vote; which angered southern farmers and former slave owners. President Andrew Johnson was angered at the feat of Congress, so he decided...

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