Many ex-slaves struggled to reposition themselves in this new free country. They found it challenging to move beyond farming or working on the plantations due to the lack of financial resources. They were still not considered equals by many whites in the South or in the North, thus would not be employed by them in other businesses. While they were free from slavery by all accounts it was a false freedom. For former slaves, the Reconstruction plan brought great promise for their individual rights, secured freedom and new opportunities.
The Reconstruction period was initially designed by Lincoln to be a time of rebuilding the South. Reconstruction was to aid the South in rebuilding infrastructure damaged in the war but also to help people reconcile the cultural, social and economic changes that came with the end of slavery. Republicans believed that once black men had the right to vote, they could effect and improve their living and economic situations. (Gillon p. 577) Thus, the campaign for black enfranchisement originated. However, the nation struggled to adapt to the end of slavery. Individuals were challenged at the psychological, soci...
... middle of paper ...
...le the battlefields were empty the deep-rooted ideologies and reasons for the war persisted and returned home. The nation remained torn and unable to cope with the social and cultural changes that came with the end of slavery. While good intentions could be found, the nation continued to struggle and obstruct its own progress. The civil rights movement would last for decades and while inequality has improved it can still be found today.
Buescher, John. “Voting Rights and the 14th Amendment.” National History
Education Clearinghouse. N.d. Web. September 16, 2011
Gillon, Steven and Matson, Cathy. The American Experiment a History of the United
States. 3rd edition. Boston, MA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2009. Print.
White,Xan. “Remembering the Colfax Massacre.” Constitutional Accountability Center. April 13,2010. Web. September 20, 2011
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