The Changes of African Americans During the Reconstruction and Progressive Era.

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During the reconstruction era through to the Progressive era much had changed for the African Americans. After the assassination of President Lincoln (April 14, 1865) President Andrew Johnson continued the “ten percent plan”. The African Americans wanted land, voting rights and wanted to be educated which had been denied to them for centuries, they were considered to be economically and racially inferior compared to the whites. During the years of 1867 to 1870 the African Americans were able to increase their amount of social power. However with this increase of power came a group of southerners led by an ex-confederate forming the Ku Klux Klan in 1867. There were many efforts made to be given equality to the African American and amongst them were three amendments laid during the Progressive era, they were amendments 13,14 and 15. The 13th amendment abolished slavery (1865), the 14th amendment gave them equal protection (1868) and lastly the 15th amendment allowed men of whatever class to be given equal opportunity of vote regardless of social and financial status. Some of the other efforts made to the African Americans is the “40 acres and a mule” (1865) that were promised to them in after they were freed. The 40 acres that the newly freed African Americans were promised were to be used for farmland, and the mule were to be used for the plowing of the soil. This was awarded to the freed African Americans so that they would be able to sustain themselves after they were freed from their masters. The North did not agree with the slavery of the African American belief of the South and did not want to pursue this belief into the West. They were motivated to pass on their beliefs as they wanted the West to be more educated, industrial, urban and commercial which in end would lead to a better government. The West after the civil war were hungry for change and did not
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