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Lecture II. TN Curriculum Standards:. 4.0- Understand the effects of the Civil War and Reconstruction on U.S. politics. Understand the political issues and problems that affected the U.S. during the last half of the 19 th century.

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Tn curriculum standards
TN Curriculum Standards:

  • 4.0- Understand the effects of the Civil War and Reconstruction on U.S. politics.

  • Understand the political issues and problems that affected the U.S. during the last half of the 19th century.

  • 5.0- Investigate the dynamics of the post-Reconstruction era and the people and events that influenced the country.








Black codes1
Black Codes

  • Black Codes were laws that restricted the freedom of former slaves.

  • Several states refused to accept the 13th amendment .

  • They passed laws to further restrict the freedom of the newly freed slaves.

  • The laws were specifically designed to send them back to the plantation. They were called Black Codes.


Examples of black codes
Examples of Black Codes

  • MS created a law that required each person to have written proof of employment.

  • People that couldn’t show evidence of employment were forced back to work on a plantation (for free).

  • Contracts of employment between former slaves and landowners were written for 1 year.

  • Blacks did not have the right to break these contracts.


Black codes continued
Black Codes (continued)

  • In an effort to get the services of Black women, labor contracts often required the entire family to work (not just the person that signed the agreement.

  • If Blacks tried to work jobs outside of farming, they had to pay heavy taxes.

  • Some contracts required the Blacks to work from sunup to sundown.



Black codes continued1
Black Codes (continued)

  • They couldn’t leave the plantation without permission.

  • A Black man caught preaching without a license would be guilty of committing a criminal offense and sent back to the plantation.


The freedmen s bureau
The Freedmen’s Bureau

  • The Freedmen’s Bureau was an agency created by the government to help assist both the newly freed slaves and the landowners.

  • They distributed food to the poor people in the South (Blacks and Whites) and helped negotiate labor contracts between the freed slaves and the landowners.

  • They helped promote education in the South.

  • During slavery, it wasn’t that slaves were unwilling to learn. There were laws that made it illegal for them to learn how to read and write.

  • The Bureau established schools and provided books and teachers.



Fisk university nashville tn established by the freedmen s bureau
Fisk University- Nashville, TN (established by the Freedmen’s Bureau)


Howard university washington d c established by the freedmen s bureau
Howard University-Washington, D. C. (established by the Freedmen’s Bureau)



Political fiasco
Political Fiasco

  • When Johnson took office, he pardoned more than 7000 Southerners and allowed them to return to Congress.

  • Northern Congressmen knew that they needed to weaken the political power of the Southern Democrats and increase the power of the Republicans.

  • If the Southern Democrats gained strength, White Supremacy would quickly return to Southern parts of the country.

  • A group known as Radical Republicans decided that the only way to break the South’s political party was to extend the vote to the newly freed slaves.


  • Freedom completely changed the lives of the former slaves.

  • Slaves marriages weren’t legally recognized, so as soon as the slaves found out that they were free, many chose to have official ceremonies.

  • Other slaves left their former plantations in search of relatives who had been sold away years earlier.



40 acres and a mule
40 Acres and a Mule

  • Former slaves wanted the same rights as White citizens.

  • They wanted their own land to farm.

  • Sherman (Union Army General) had tried to set aside land for them in South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, but the government later gave the land back to its former owners.


40 acres a mule
“40 Acres & a mule”

  • Sherman’s order required that Black families were to receive 40 acres of land and mule.

  • Before the land was taken away, 40,000 freedmen moved onto the land.

  • They did not plant crops like rice and cotton as they had during slavery, but they did plant corn and sweet potatoes.

  • They worked together to develop the land.

  • Andrew Johnson quickly reversed this order.


Love conquers all
Love Conquers All

  • In many cases, the newly freed slaves never found their loved ones.

  • There are reports of some freedmen and women having walked over 600 miles in search of loved ones.

  • They ran ads in “negro” newspapers trying to find family members that had been sold during slavery.





Ulysses s grant1
Ulysses S. Grant

  • While people in the North loved Grant (he had been a former Union Army General), the people in the South HATED him.

  • The planter class and the ex-Confederates temporarily joined sides to rally against Grant.

  • They formed the Ku Klux Klan. Their immediate goal was to destroy the Republican Party in the South.








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