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Reconstruction after the Civil War

posted Oct 20, 2010, 6:09 PM by Unknown user

           People said that “the North won the Civil War, but the South won Reconstruction” for a reason; the North won the war, but failed in changing the South. At first, the federal government sent some officers to the South and tried to rebuild the system and wipe slavery out. But then, the federal government started to conceded to the South both on their programs and give back the autonomy. After several years, the South was still looked like legal slavery. Also, many people and organizations in South resisted the change on slavery. At the end, the Southerner got on their old way and didn’t change much. The Reconstruction came to an end when President Haya signed the Compromise of  1877 and pulled troops out of South.

           It was said that the South won the Reconstruction because after several years of trying to rebuild the system of South, the North failed to change it. There are few aspects that you can find this truth: from policies, agriculture mode and people’s thoughts.

First, the federal government failed to reconstruction on the South’s policies. The federal government gave back the right to the states that they can legislate their own laws. It’s no doubt that this prerogative made the Southern States back to their old way. Then, the federal government acquiesce the sharecropper policy. So the South part went back to the slavery days under a different name.  From outside, you might see that the Northern politicians took power of the South States; but in fact, the Southerners didn’t like the carpetbagger as much as African Americans.

There are also many organizations resisted the federal government. The most notorious one is K.K.K. This organization terrorizing the African Americans and people supported them. They wanted to get rid of the “Black government” by violence. This was one of the organizations, but it represented the thought of a lot of Southerners. The Southerners have not been reconstructed and they never realized slavery was illegal. They didn’t feel guilty or criminal about what they have done to the African Americans.

            In some views, the North won the war by the leading of President Lincoln; but the president after Lincoln, who was Johnson, gave more autonomy power to the Southern States. When President Haya took power, what he promised the South to do led to the failure of the Reconstruction. The Weakness of the federal government put the Reconstruction in failure. But federal government was not the only one who should take responsibility for this. I think the thoughts of people are the most important thing. If you can’t make changes in their mind, they maybe just change on surface but still have their own views.    

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