During the Civil War, on December 1863, President Lincoln announced his 10 % Plan for Reconstruction. Many Northerners considered it to be too mild, but the blacks condemned it for ignoring saying nothing about civil rights fir the freedmen and ignoring black suffrage. Lincoln’s plan was never carried out because he was assassinated less than one week after the Civil War. However, while Lincoln was president, a national debate developed over whether Congress or the President should establish the Reconstruction policy. Andrew Johnson, who became President of the U.S. in 1865, had his own Reconstruction plan, but it turned out to be unsuccessful largely because of the unfair ways in which blacks were treated.
Even though slavery was now prohibited, freed blacks were now left alone to struggle finding simple things like a roof to live in and a job to work for. Meanwhile, President Abraham Lincoln wanted to give the south humane conditions for them to be accepted back into the union and also wanted to give African Americans and former soldiers the right to vote, but that wasn’t very successful when put into the hands of Congress. Soon after Lincoln was killed in 1865, President Andrew Johnson came into presidency and changed the conditions giving African Americans a harder time adapting to their new lives as freedmen. Furthermore, the south became very violent against the blacks and came up with black codes, which put freed blacks as closely as possible back into a slave state. These black codes prohibited interracial marriages, the ownership of guns or liquor, congregation in large groups and had curfews for these freedmen.
The answer to this question was as related to how important each side believed it was to enfranchise African Americans into this country (socially, politically, economically, and culturally) as it was in exacting an appropriate punishment for the treasonous South. Although the two Republican factions disagreed on several aspects of Reconstruction policy, they both understood that the Conservative approach to Reconstruction could never be enacted. The Conservatives lead by President Johnson, believed in a rapid readmission, into the Union, for the defeated Southern states. Johnson's stipulations were solely that the states ratify the 13th Amendment, and repudiate Confederate war debt (thus making it null and void). A second more controversial measure to the democrat's plan for rapid reconstruction was the issuing of pardons to former Confederate officials, landowners, and generals.
It was agreed upon by the Republicans that the only way the southern states would be welcomed back into the Union was if they ratified the Fourteenth Amendment but then President Johnson told the states that they should ignore this law and not pass it. Congress had the majority of votes that were in favor of the southern states adopting the amendment so it was put into law. The last congressional Reconstruction measure that was passed was the Civil Rights Act of 1875, which prohibited racial discrimination in transportation, restaurants and jury selection. Unfortunately it did not guarantee equality in schools, churches or cemeteries so it led to many problems in the future. After the end of Reconstruction, the idea of the “New South” arose and the main advocate of this was Henry Grady, editor for the Atlanta Constitution (Grem).
Following Grant’s unenthusiastic approach to protecting blacks in the South, the executive branch gradually made its position on the issue clear in 1876. (Zinn, 199) When Hayes beat Tilden in the presidential election by promising to end the Reconstruction in the South, it was evident that the White House would no longer support any calls for the protection of blacks. The compromise of 1877 brought Hayes to office, but “doomed the black man to a second class citizenship that was to be his lot for nearly a century afterward,'; (Davis, 160). The Radical Republican’s in Congress, who were responsible for freeing the blacks, were also responsible for letting their voices become silenced. This occurred as the other, more industrial, interests of the broad based party dominated their platform; leaving the blacks to face the wrath of the Southerners.
Most would argue that the problems involving the South adjusting socially to the notion of liberated blacks was the msot heated issue. It was an issue that encompassed both a change in lifestyle as well as in longstanding moral values. Both Presdential and Congressional plans were developed in an attempt to ensure Reconstruction would be as smooth as a political, economic and social revolution as humanly possible. President Abraham Lincoln believed from the start of the War, and therefore the start of Reconstruction, that the Southern states had never legally seceded from the Untion. Therefore his plan for reconstruction would be aimed at preserving the peace of the Union and fairly rebuilding the South.
Around this time, two major bills were proposed; one of them was the Civil Rights bill. This bill would completely veto all of the Black Codes and give African American’s citizenship rights. The Houses passed it, but Johnson being prejudiced did not support it and vetoed both bills. The Civil Rights bill soon became the first bill to ever be passed over presidential veto. Congress began to come up with its own plan for reconstruction; it would help the African Americans.
Lincoln was assassinated so there was no real support behind his ten percent plan. Even though Lincoln’s plan was not used, some of the ideas from his plan were still included in Johnson’s such as taking an oath of loyalty by the former confederate officials to rejoin the union and create a state government. The republicans were too radical for Johnson in their views of how former slaves should be treated. They also wanted harsher punishment for southern officials which would have taken more time where Johnson just wanted reconstruction to be over as soon as possible. The radicals did have convincing plans to restore America but Johnson rejected a lot of the ideas that the radicals
He was much more lenient towards the South than Lincoln was, giving the South the right to regulate their actions. For example, African Americans could be controlled, but still couldn’t be bought nor sold. Slavery technically ended, but the new sharecropper sy... ... middle of paper ... ...hing, and mob action, the South eventually wore down the political will of the North, allowing the South to go back to their old ways of life. The South won in Reconstruction in many ways. Rebuilding the South was one of its major focuses.
3) These rules would concede the negro limited civil rights, but neither social nor political equality (page 787) . It is clear, however, that by 1876-77, a majority of white Americans were weary of continuing to battle southern retaliation to the reconstruction, especially when there appeared some possibility that the South was ready to give more than lip service to the rights promised by the Civil War Amendments. This bargain quickly caused an uproar by its opponents. Democrat William Clay said, "Instead of withdrawing... ... middle of paper ... ...et out his southern policy very clearly. He wanted to eliminate political acts of violence against blacks.