Essay on Reconstruction and Industrialization

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Reconstruction and Industrialization

After the Civil War, the nation witnessed two major social-economic movements: Reconstruction and Industrialization, which changed the country completely and made it one of the greatest industrialized countries in the world. However, it changed not only the country, but also, the society, its way of life and traditions.
The effort to rebuild the southern states and restore the Union was known as Reconstruction, a period that lasted from 1865 to 1877. Several different plans for Reconstruction emerged during and after the war. Much debate about differing plans centered on who would control Reconstruction -- the President or Congress. Lincoln had wanted to adopt a mild and forgiving policy
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In addition to addressing several civil rights issues, the amendment prohibited many former Confederate officers and government officials from voting. This period of Radical Reconstruction did not bring much change in the South. Although blacks began to participate in political life, they met tremendous hostility. Some Southern whites adopted a policy of terror to keep the freedmen from becoming too independent. Because blacks had no jobs or land they became sharecroppers in a kind of economic slavery. Grant won election in 1868, and Congress became free to follow its Radical Reconstruction policies. It successfully proposed the Fourteenth and the Fifteenth Amendments. However, a major depression occurred in 1873. In addition, public attention was diverted by the graft and corruption in President Grant's cabinet. Corruption in the Grant administration weakened the political strength of the Republican Party. In addition, by the early 1870s, all but a handful former Confederates could vote again. Most of these white southern males now voted Democratic in reaction to Radical Republican Reconstruction. For most of the next century, the Democratic party would dominate voting in the South, giving rise to the term solid South. The emergence of the solid South gave the Democrats greater power in politics at the national level. In 1876, Democrats nominated Tilden, the governor of New York, to run for President against
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