December 19, 2011
AP US HISTORY
Who Killed Reconstruction North or South?
Union General Ulysses S. Grant had forced Confederate General Robert E. Lee to surrender his army at Appomattox Courthouse on April 9, 186 the civil war had finally come to an end. The north did in fact claim and celebrate their victory, but the most difficult process of the ordeal was yet to come. The North and South now had to determine how to reconstruct the United States of America and then had to put their plans into action. This process is known as reconstruction, turned out to be a much more harmful trial than anyone could have expected. The north attempted to change southern society during Reconstruction, and they accomplished this task to some degree. The effects on the social status of blacks, the effects on the economic status of blacks, and the effects on other groups—white men and women, were all important aspects of the Reconstruction process. Although the North had huge goals and expectation for transforming the South, they did not completely succeed in doing so.
President Lincoln had already emancipated four million slaves by getting the Thirteenth Amendment passed in January 1865, yet after the war, the majority of southern whites wished to keep blacks adrift between slavery and freedom. They did not wish to grant blacks with any new rights, similar to the status of the Old South’s free Negro. The Congress took the initiative to “outlaw” this...