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Week 4 Notes - HIST 202

by: Alex Tucker

Week 4 Notes - HIST 202 HIST 202

Marketplace > University of Oregon > History > HIST 202 > Week 4 Notes HIST 202
Alex Tucker

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Week 4 Notes
Nineteenth Century American History
Steve Beda
Class Notes
HIST 202, history, Beda, week 4, UO
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This 12 page Class Notes was uploaded by Alex Tucker on Friday February 12, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to HIST 202 at University of Oregon taught by Steve Beda in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 24 views. For similar materials see Nineteenth Century American History in History at University of Oregon.


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Date Created: 02/12/16
Radical Reconstruction (Day 9) 1/25/16 - Problems of Race in the Post-War South - If you want to understand race in modern America, you have to understand Reconstruction. Perhaps no other area in American history was as crucial for shaping racial relations. - Jim Crow segregation, disproportionate incarceration of African Americans, & modern barriers to black political participation all have origins in Reconstruction Era. At the same time, Civil Rights movement begins. - End of the War - Shift to Total War - Emancipation Proclamation turned war into a moral crusade & there are no half-measures in a moral crusade. The North had to wage war not just on battlefields, but on South’s resources, society, transportation systems, & most importantly of all, on slavery – South’s greatest source of wealth. - Sherman’s March to the Sea (1864) - General went through South & burned towns / farms - Why did the North Win? - North had better generals & more functioning military - Better political leadership - “Lost of WW III” thesis: Southerners lost desire to continue - rapid decline of Southern nationalism - won war through diplomacy - “General Strike of Slaves” fundamentally weakened Southern economy - financed war through war bonds; allowed greater military spending - South printed money to finance war  inflationary crisis; impossible to finance war - Had technological advantage; war won in shoe factories (Lowell) & gun factories (New Haven) - The shift to total war left South’s economy, political system, & society in shambles & even before war’s end, N. politicians were debating how best to reconstruct South & again make it a functioning part of USA. - Questions of Reconstruction - Would Reconstruction be a recreation of the Old South or the beginning of a New South? - Is reconciliation compatible w/ emancipation? - Both Northerners & Southerners were “war weary,” & both wanted to put the war behind them. Would Southerners accept Northern political debates? Did Northerners have the political will to see emancipation through? - Lincoln’s Reconstruction Radical Reconstruction (Day 9) 1/25/16 - Competing Views of Reconstruction - Lincoln’s view: “As fast as possible, as lenient as possible” - “I hope that there will be no persecutions, no bloody work after the war is over. No one need except me to take any part in hanging or killing these men, even the worst of them. Frighten them out of the country, open the gates, let down the bars, scare them off, but enough lives have been sacrificed.” - Lincoln, Cabinet Meeting, Apr 14, 1865 - Radical Republicans - Confederacy needed to be treated as conquered territory. North needed to ensure the new political system in South was inherently loyal to Union & fully accepted emancipation. - “Ten Percent Plan” - issued in Lincoln’s Proclamation of Amnesty & Reconstruction, Dec 1863 - 10% of white voting population would have to sign a loyalty oath, denounce secession, & accept emancipation. States w/ required 10% would be admitted under presidential authority. - Lincoln’s plan avoided questions of black suffrage & civil rights - Radical Republicans & Wade-Davis Bill - Proposed July 4, 1864; Southern states should be reverted to status of unorganized territories & only readmitted to Union under congressional authority. - To be readmitted to Union, a majority of white male citizens had to take an “Ironclad Oath”. All Confederate officers above rank of lieutenant, & all civil officers would not receive a pardon & would be disenfranchised forever. - 13 Amendment - Lincoln vetoed Wade-Davis thll; partly as concession (strongly supported passage of 13 Amendment) - Also feared if Emancipation Proclamation was only grounds for emancipation, southerners could sue in fed court to reclaim property - Ratified Jan 1865 Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for crime (duly convicted) shall exist within US. Section 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. Radical Reconstruction (Day 9) 1/25/16 - Battle of Appomattox Court House - Acting under Lincoln’s direct orders, Grant’s army issued 30,000 parole slips & though soldiers had to surrender their rifles they were allowed to keep their side arms / horses. Then they were told to just go home. - Johnson’s Reconstruction - “The Amazing Leniency of Andrew Johnson” - Johnson largely extended Lincoln’s “Ten Percent Plan,” but made it much more lenient. Instead of requiring 10% of all state’s population to sign loyalty oaths, Johnson simply stated that new state governments could be formed out of “that portion who are loyal”. - Civil Rights Problems in the South - The Demilitarized South - Union troops in South went from over 1 million (1865)  less than 20,000 (1866) - Black Codes & “Pig Laws” - Most states immediately passed a series of “Black Codes,” baring freedmen from voting, holding office, & owning property. - “Pig Laws” disproportionally punished blacks for stealing farm animals, vagrancy, & made it a crime for black men to be unemployed - “Pig Law” examples - “Every Negro is required to be in the regular service of some white person or former owner, who shall be held responsible for the conduct of that Negro.” - “No Negro shall be permitted to preach or otherwise speak out to congregations of colored people w/o special permission in writing from government.” - “No Negro shall be permitted outside in public after sundown w/o permission in writing from the government. A Negro conducting business for a white person may do so but only under the direct supervision of his employer.” - “No Negro who is not in the military service shall be allowed to carry firearms of any kind of weapons of any type w/o special written permission of his employer.” - The Joint Committee on Reconstruction - Upset w/ Reconstruction’s failure to protect freedmen in South - Radical Republicans in Congress convened Joint Committee on Reconstruction in Jan 1866. - Committee finished its investigation in March, & issued 3 reccomendations: 1) It would be “madness” to continue to let former Confederates run new Southern governments; Radical Reconstruction (Day 9) 1/25/16 2) Johnson’s policy of leniency was misguided; 3) “Safeguards” would be necessary to guarantee security of freedmen in South. - Freedmen’s Bureau - Freedmen’s Bureau Bill, passed by Lincoln in 1865, was intended to establish schools & land grant programs for freed slaves. The initial legislation authorizing the bureau only provided funding for one year. In 1866, Radical Republicans renewed the Freedmen’s Bureau & authorized infinite funding. - Reconstruction Act (1867) 1) Divided South into 5 military districts; 2) Said each district would be commanded by a general & “an adequate military force”; 3) General would supervise election of delegates to state conventions & those new state conventions would write new state constitutions 4) When majority of voters ratified Constitution & 14 Amendment, & was granted Congressional approval, then it could be readmitted to Union - Andrew Johnson’s Impeachment - Feb 1868 - Johnson was acquitted of each charge of impeachment but just barely. But even though he was acquitted, impeachment trial had effect of delegitimizing his presidency, & administration - 14 Amendment (ratified July 9, 1868) - Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the US, & subject to jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the US & of the state wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of US; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, w/o due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. th - 15 Amendment (ratified Feb 3, 1870) - Section 1. Right of citizens of US to vote shall not be denied or abridged by US or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. - Successes of Radical Reconstruction - Literacy among Southern blacks increased to 25-30% during Reconstruction - Higher than rates for Southern whites - Of 1,000 delegates to state Constitutional conventions, 268 = black - ~ 680 African Americans served in State Senates during Reconstruction. Radical Reconstruction (Day 9) 1/25/16 - 41 black sheriffs, 5 black mayors, & 145 blacks on city councils in South - What - What if Radical Reconstruction had continued? How might the South have been different? How might racial relations in the US been different? The Reign of Terror (Day 10) 1/27/16 - Ku Klux Klan, Vigilantism, & Reassertion of White Supremacy in the Reconstruction South - Ku Klux Klan members (Tishomingo County, Mississippi, Sept 1871) “The Redeemers, Ready to Ride” - Remembering Reconstruction - Who’s At Fault for Reconstruction’s Failures? - Monday night’s Iowa Democratic Town Hall, Hillary Clinton asked what president most inspired her (Lincoln) - So, according to Clinton, black senators were responsible for Jim Crow Laws - Reconstruction did not fail because Radical Republicans passed civil rights legislation. Nor did reconstruction fail because civil rights legislation - To blame Radical Republicans for Reconstruction’s failure is to ignore & completely dismiss the long history of white supremacy in the South. To blame African Americans for Reconstruction’s failure is a paradigmatic case of blaming the victim. - Southern Response to Reconstruction - Political Context for Rise of KKK - South had been synonymous w/ Democratic party since before war - Freed blacks overwhelmingly voted Republican - Southern whites interpreted sudden success of Republican Party in South as evidence that Republican party was systematically disenfranchising white voters - Birth of The Ku Klux Klan - Pulaski, Tennessee, ~ late 1865 (founded by 6 Confederate officers) - Likely derives from kuklos, Greek word for circle - Great deal of Klan names come from Greek - Aims of the Klan - “It is the duty of all klansmen to fight for the ‘reenfranchisement and emancipation’ of the white men of the South, and the restitution of the Southern people to all their rights.” - The Ku Klux Klan - Organization - Reconstruction-era Klan was radically decentralized. There was no central leadership, no formal structure - As news of Klan activities spread, white supremacists organized Klans in own communities. (grassroots social movement) The Reign of Terror (Day 10) 1/27/16 - Brief History of Klan Regalia - White sheet & hood didn’t become accepted regalia until early 20 C - Hood had origins in antebellum minstrel shows, where ghosts frightened gullible slaves - Who were the Klansmen? - “Lifting the Klan mark revealed a chaotic multitude of anti- black vigilante groups, disgruntled poor white farmers, wartime gurrilla bands, displaced Democratic politicians, illegal whisky distillers, coercive moral reformers, sadists, rapists, white workmen fearful of black competition, employers trying to enforce labor discipline, common thieves, neighbors with decades old grudges, and even a few freedmen and white Republicans who allied with Democratic whites or had criminal agendas of their own. Indeed, all they had in common, themselves, or were called, Klansmen.” - The Reign of Terror - , Disorganized (yet systematic) Violence of the Klan - Although Klan was a racially decentralized organization, frequent attacks on blacks at the polls had effect of systematically denying freedmen their right to vote. - Between 1886 & 1887, N / S Carolina Klan was responsible for 197 murders & 548 assaults - Psychology of Violence - Terrorism - Causes blacks not to vote - Klan & Democratic Party - “In effect, the Klan was a military force serving the interests of the Democrat Party, the planter class, and all those who desired restoration of white supremacy. Its purposes were political, but political in the broadest sense, for it sought to affect power relations, both public and private, throughout Southern society. It aimed to reverse the interlocking changes sweeping over the South during Reconstruction to destroy the Republican party’s infrastructure, undermine the Reconstruction state, reestablish control of the black labor force, and restore racial subordination in every aspect of Southern life.” - Eric Foner, Reconstruction, 1988 - another contemporary comparison = Sinn Féin & Irish Republican Army (IRA) - Racial Republican Response - Waiving the Bloody Shirt in Congress The Reign of Terror (Day 10) 1/27/16 - 1871, Benjamin Franklin Butler, Pennsylvania Republican, convened a Congressional Committee & took testimony about Klan activities in South - 1871 Civil Rights Act (Ku Klux Klan Act) - Bill attempted to make membership illegal - Southern politicians refused to support legislation, claiming Klan was a myth of Republican conspiracy theory - When bill was debated in Congress, Klan led riot & massacre in Meridian, Mississippi - End of the Klan? - Klan may have disappeared in 1871, but several other secretive white supremacist organizations rose to fill its place. These include the White Shirts League, the Red Shirts, & the Knights of White Camellia. - Vigilantism & Lynching: 1872 Louisiana Election & Colfax Massacre - Despite racial violence at polls, Louisiana’s voters elected Republican government - However, a “Fusion Ticket” of Democrats & white supremacists claimed to be legitimate government of Louisiana - Conflict led to vigilantism throughout state, as both sides attempted to secure their legitimacy through violence - By spring 1873, vigilantism directed at blacks had gotten so bad that many left homes & moved to Colfax - April 14, 1863; mob of whites attacked Colfax landing; set courthouse on fire, forcing blacks into open - Most were executed as they left courthouse. Others shot execution + style (total = 150 killed) - End of Reconstruction - Northern Attitudes Towards Reconstruction - Many Northerners, even staunch Republicans begin to feel that Reconstruction is taking too long & that w/ the passage of th 15 Amendment, not much to do - Panic of 1873 & Removal of Federal Troops from South - 1873, wheat dropped from $2.50  50¢ / barrel - wages in manufacturing dropped 50% - workers in N cities went on strike, protesting layoffs & wage reductions The Reign of Terror (Day 10) 1/27/16 - problems: 1) Financial crisis means Grant doesn’t have budget to keep troops in South; 2) Republicans start telling Grant he’s too focused on South & ignoring main constituency in North; 3) Immigrant workers creating unrest through strikes are Republican Party’s base. - Political Scandal - Gold Scandal (1869) big-name investors (who are, coincidentally, loyal to Republican Party) found guilty of fixing gold prices - Whiskey Ring (1870) whisky distillers found guilty of bribing Grant Administration officials to avoid paying taxes - Credit Mobiler Scandal (1872) Union Pacific Railroad found guilty of defrauding government out of millions of dollars. Grant appeared to have been aware of scandal. - 1874 Midterm Elections - Strikes, financial panic, & political corruption make Republicans appear inept & disorderly. Democratic Party now begins to portray itself as party of law & order. The Democrats take control of Congress in 1874 & begin retreating from Reconstruction. - Big Points - Reconstruction was working. But Reconstruction required both top- down & bottom-up political activism. - Radical Republicans provided political activism @ top of political system. Civil rights activists, black politicians, representatives of Freedmen’s Bureau, & black voters were @ bottom. - However, the concerted & systematic campaign of terror led by KKK & white supremacists erased the bottom-up political activism, & as that eroded so did the Republicans’ control of political system. - Which is all to say, sorry, Hillary, the Radical Republicans weren’t at fault for Reconstruction’s failures. It was white supremacists. Slavery By Another Name (Day 11) 1/29/16 - Sharecropping & Coerced Labor in post-Reconstruction Society - Slavery was 2 things 1. Formal system of racial subordination; 2. System for extracting most labor for least amount of money - The Redeemers - Politics in post-Reconstruction South - After African Americans had been forced away form polls by white supremacist vigilantes & Reconstruction ended, Democrats regain control of local / state governments. These Democrats = “The redeemers” - Immediately passed several laws intended to reestablish system of racial subordination that had existed under slavery - Black Codes - Legalized Segregation - By 1800s, nearly every Southern state had some version of Black Codes - Had origins in Slave Codes (1700s) - Examples: - “Every Negro is required to be in the regular service of some white person or former owner, who shall be held responsible for the conduct of the Negro” - “No Negro shall be permitted to preach or otherwise speak out to congregations of colored people without special permission in writing from the government” - Pig Laws: Criminalizing Black Life - In addition to Black Codes, “Redeemer” govs. Increased penalties for minor crimes - Laws disproportionally affected freed slaves - African American prison population expanded exponentially (more than 300%) - Convict Leasing System: Resurgence of Coerced Labor - Under convict leasing laws passed by most “Redeemer” govs., private employers or landowners could “lease” prisoners & compel them to do work - Basically slavery - Not humane system - 14 thAmendment - Role of Supreme Court Slavery By Another Name (Day 11) 1/29/16 - Slaughter House Cases (1873): 5-4 decision, Justice Samuel Miller argued 13/14 Amendments were intended to end slavery & advance rights of freedmen - US v. Cruikshank (1876): Supreme Court ruled “due process” & “equal protection” applies only to state actions - Supreme Court left civil rights to states - Economical Obstacles to Emancipation - Economic Shortcomings of Emancipation - Emancipation left freedmen w/ nothing but freedom. Freedom was important, but you can’t feed a family w/ freedom itself. - Freed African Americans lacked PHYSICAL CAPITAL - education, literacy, & skills - The only thing they had to sell was their labor. - “Freedom Dues” - in other systems of coerced labor, when a worker was given his / her freedom, s/he also received “freedom dues” - money, land, or tools intended to ease transition into market economy. - 17 C Virginia, when indentured servant’s term ended s/he given clothing & cash - Fredrick Douglass proposed “Freedman’s Bank”; low interest loans - 1887, Thaddeus Stevens proposed Bill to give freed slaves 40 acres & $50 - neither were passed - Paradox of Southern Economy - Freed blacks have excess of labor to sell - White landowners have excess of land, but can’t afford workers - What Is Sharecropping? - Landowner rents out land to tenant & tenant pays rent w/ share of crop - Economic compromise, way for landowners to deal w/ poor financial markets & blacks to deal w/ lack of available land - Shaped by white supremacy; contracts structured to disadvantage freed slaves - Debt Peonage - In order to buy seed, tools, & other equipment, sharecroppers had to borrow from landlords - For payment, landowners required larger share of crop, requiring sharecroppers to borrow more money - Legacy of Sharecropping - Because the Southern labor market was 1. Rooted in an agricultural economy & Slavery By Another Name (Day 11) 1/29/16 2. Strictly segregated, African Americans had few economic opportunities beyond sharecropping. - Sharecropping created a cycle of poverty & significantly limited African Americans’ opportunities for economic advancement. - Today’s racial economic equality has its origins in the sharecropping system. - Resistance: Long Civil Rights Movement - Blacks entering North faced harsh regime of white supremacy, economic marginalization, & segregation. - There was one key difference though: in the North, blacks had political rights, & over the course of the next century they would fight to maintain & expand those political rights & leverage them to fight for civil rights. - Sounds of Southern Rural Poverty - Barrelhouse (nightclub for jazz / blues; only blacks went) - Blues - Famous musicians: Robert Johnson & Buddy Moss - How do the Blues function as a form of protest? - How does the Blues reshape the image & meaning of what it means to be a Southern sharecropper? - Why might this be important?


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