In What Ways And To What Extent Did Constitutional And Social Developments Between 1860 And 1877 Amount To A Revolution?

1057 words - 5 pages

In 1861 the bloodiest and one of the most important revolutions in American Historybegan, The Civil War. Socially this war had been brewing since the beginning of slavery.This controversial subject had been the object of debate mainly because it required abalance between free and slave states. Slavery was also a big issue between theDemocrats in the 1860 election because they could not agree on the issue of popularsovereignty. This eventually led to their splitting which opened up the doors for Lincolnto take office. After Lincoln was inaugurated in 1860 seven states ceded and later fourmore. The south believed they were within their constitutional right to cede. In SouthCarolina's ...view middle of the document...

With theneed to help these newly freed blacks and protect them from those endorsing things likethe Black Codes, states had to develop a constitution with special specifications toblack's rights. The constitutional changes that occurred not only to the state governmentsbut to the national governments as well were the thirteenth amendment that endedslavery, the fourteenth that made blacks citizens, and the fifteenth that gave blacks theright to vote as illustrated in The First Vote (Doc G). The latter developments changedthe south and America forever. The entire southern way of life was flipped upside downeconomically and socially. Sharecropping and the crop-lien system emerged to solve thelabor shortages, blacks status increased, and education expanded; these are some of themain results of the Reconstruction Revolution.The Final revolution of this time unfortunately was that of the Redeemers. Since thebeginning the conservatives had been fighting reconstruction in the South. The South hadalways had people (the democrats) opposed to black suffrage. Gideon Wells said, "TheFederal government has no right...to dictate the matter of suffrage (Doc D)." To resolvethese conservatives would require literacy tests to vote, and reinstate propertyrequirements. These methods were ways around the vague constitutional developments ofthe 15th amendment. Violence was also used as a means to control the black populationin the South. The Klu Klux Klan and White League would use terrorist acts on blacks andlynch many innocent blacks to discourage them from voting...

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