The Civil War has now ended and many problems are arising. Due to most fighting occurring in the south during the war, the south is in ruins. The transportation system is destroyed and the plantations are collapsing. An effort is being made to reorganize the seceded states and bring them back to the union. This process is called Reconstruction.
President Lincoln wanted to offer all southerners a pardon. He said that when 10% of the south is willing to take an oath of loyalty to the United States, the state could form a new government and return to the union. Though sadly, President Lincoln has been assassinated by Wilkes Booth. The new president is Andrew Johnson and he is picking up where Lincoln left off for reconstruction. Johnson's plan differs much from president Lincoln's plan though. His plan states that the former confederate state will be readmitted to the union only after completing three conditions: every state had to nullify its act of secession, except that the U.S. Government will not pay its debt from the Civil War, and ratify the 13th amendment to the constitution which had passed in 1865 to abolish all slavery.
General Gordon grander has arrived in Galveston to take control of the state. He has announced the emancipation proclamation and declared all selves free. Due to this act on June 19, the day has been full of celebrations and is named Juneteenth or Texas Emancipation Day. Another act has also taken place by the congress called the Freedman's Bureau. This program helps freed slave to find jobs, provide food, clothing, skills, and education.
President Johnson has just recently appointed Andrew J. Hamilton as governor of Texas. Johnson wanted to appoint unionist which was part of why Hamilton is the new governor. He called delegates to a constitutional convention to discuss Johnson's conditions for returning to the union. The delegates at the convention are nearly all in favor of seccession and the Confederacy. Several are high ranking officers in the the confederate army and few are delegates who are willing to give African Americans any rights. This group is definetly bias due to its many favors upon the Confederacy.
After the amendment that nullified secession, nullified the state's war debt, and abolished slavery, the Constitution of 1866 was created. The constitution stated that African American Texans will not be granted equal rights. Later the ex-Confederates, who controlled the state legislature, refused to ratify the thirteenth amendment which outlawed slavery, and the fourteenth amendment which protected the rights of the formerly enslaved people. Soon the legislature enacted laws called black codes that restricted the rights of free people.
The congress thought that president Johnson's plan is not working because he is being too easy on the south. These acts strengthened a group of republicans who believed that congress should direct reconstruction. These people were called the Radical Republicans. President Johnson has also refused to allow the measures that the Congress has passed. For these reasons, the congressional elections has given the Radical Republicans 2/3 control of both houses of Congress.
As the new reconstruction plan began, it was now much harsher then before. Under the plan, the existing governments in the south are illegal and they had divided the south into five military districts where an army general was in charge of each. The military would rule the districts until the state met certain requirements. Congress also required many white southerners to take an oath called the Ironcald Oath. This oath kept many people from voting, serving on juries, or holding public office.
General Sheridan, general in charge of the fifth district, assigned control over Texas to General Charles Griffin. Griffen used the army and the Freedman's bureau to register all male freedmen across the state to vote. Now nearly 50,000 freedmen have been registered. Due to this, some white men joined an organization called the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) which is a group of people who used violence and terror against African Americans. These white people also have been attacking a group of carpetbaggers, northerners in the south working for a Reconstruction government, and scalawags, white southerners who supported Reconstruction. The KKK is committing crime to both these groups because of their favor for reconstruction.
Ku Klux Klan Attack
A Ku Klux Klan attack took place in Alabama in the 1960s. The group killed three people who were northerners and members of the Congress of Racial Equality. After the attack another one occurred on a two buses with black people arriving in Alabama. The first bus was bombed and the other as boarded by the KKK members who beat the blacks inside.
It is now March 1870, and reconstruction has officially ended. Though due to the sates new policies, funding them has brought the tax up greatly. This is a big issue that the white people in Texas are disliking. Most free African Americans are settling in rural areas. Some continued to work for white men, but others moved on. Few are even gone to look for their family. A while after in 1872 the democrats have won a majority of the seats in the state's legislature. They have now reduced the governor's power and abolished the state police force. The democrates have won and will be lasting for the next 105 years.