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M1/7/13; M12/19/11 ; T12/14/10 ; W12/16/09. National Politics During Reconstruction ( Ch. 16.4 & 16.5; pp. 462-471 ) Q: What were the major national political issues during Reconstruction (1865-1877)? What impact did they have on Reconstruction in the South?. I. Grantism.

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M1/7/13; M12/19/11 ; T12/14/10 ; W12/16/09

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M1 7 13 m12 19 11 t12 14 10 w12 16 09

M1/7/13; M12/19/11; T12/14/10 ; W12/16/09

National Politics During Reconstruction

(Ch. 16.4 & 16.5; pp. 462-471)

Q: What were the major national political issues during Reconstruction (1865-1877)? What impact did they have on Reconstruction in the South?


I grantism

I. Grantism

  • widespread corruption

  • many scandals:

    • gold grab

      • Jay Gould & Jim Fisk w/ Grant’s bro-in-law – corner market

    • Credit Mobilier

      • VP Schulyer Colfax – Union Pacific RR construction thru gov’t contracts

    • whiskey ring

      • private sec. Orville Babcock – bribe re: whiskey taxes

    • Indian trading posts

      • Sec War William Belknap – bribes


Ii liberal revolt

II. Liberal Revolt

  • split Republican party in 1872 election

  • wanted “home rule”

  • worried about “Grantism” corruption

  • endorsed Horace Greeley

    • Dems also endorsed

  • landslide electoral win, but relatively close popular vote

  • Amnesty Act passed


Iii panic of 1873

III. Panic of 1873

  • worst depression to date

  • focused on overspeculation in RR’s

  • collapse of Jay Cooke’s bank

  • lasted for five years


Iv currency

IV. Currency

  • silver issue – Bland-Allison Act (1878)

  • greater credit

  • important issue again in 1890s (next depression)

  • greenbacks

  • Greenback Party – 1876


V constitutional issues

V. Constitutional Issues

  • slowly chipped away at reconstruction’s gains

  • ex parte Milligan (1866)

    • banned military tribunals when regular courts open

    • impacted other laws enforced by military courts – Freedmen’s Bureau

  • TX v. White (1869)

    • upheld reconstruction process as constitutional (re-admittance of states)


V constitutional issues cont

V. Constitutional Issues (cont.)

  • Slaughterhouse Cases (1873)

    • involves LA slaughterhouse monopoly by state

    • interpreted 14th Amend. narrowly

    • only protects national citizenship, not state citizenship

    • does not protect against state restrictions

    • only protects in interstate travel, sea travel

  • US v. Reese (1876) – KY –

    • 1stEnforcement Act/15thAmend.

    • interprets 15th Amend narrowly & literally


V constitutional issues cont1

V. Constitutional Issues (cont.)

  • US v. Cruikshank –

    • LA & Colfax Massacre

    • 14th Amend protects against states, not individuals

    • individuals, not state, committed act

    • [similar parallel to debate over “hate crimes” today]

  • 1883 – Sup. Ct. invalidated C.R. Act of 1875 & KKK Act of 1871

  • Plessy v. Ferguson – 1896 – “separate but equal”


Vi weakening support redemption

VI. Weakening Support & Redemption

  • Republicans split nationally

  • many Radicals retired or dead

  • Moderate Reps worried about maintaining Rep. majority

  • Americans worried about other issues, not South

  • Dems back in power

  • by 1876, all states except 3 – FL, SC, LA


Vii election of 1876 compromise of 1877

VII. Election of 1876 & Compromise of 1877

  • Hayes (Rep.) v. Tilden (Dem.)

  • disputed results – FL, LA, SC

  • electoral commission – 7 Reps, 7 Dems, 1 Ind

    • Independent replaced by Rep.

  • Hayes wins – “Rutherfraud” – Reps.

    • Dems upset; need Dem. support

  • ends military recon.

    • troops pull out of S.

  • Reconstruction officially ends


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