There was a period around the time the Civil War ended known as the Post Civil War. This was a time America named Growing Pains. This name was given due to all the troubles and things they went through. There was so much that happened during this time and this is what made this era a known time period. During 1865-1900 post civil war periods, two major turning points would be segregation and reconstruction of the union.
Firstly, we will discuss the affect segregation had on the post civil war times. During the 1870’s, segregation took place. Segregation was a period when there was a difference in the treatment of race. Things like education and living were affected. After the civil war this issue was to be changed. This period was called the reconstruction period. The main focus here was to ensure the freed slaves remained free.
The thing that got the slave free was the Emancipation Proclamation. This was created by Abraham Lincoln in 1863. It didn’t fully free all slaves until around December 1865 (newworldencyclopedia.org). “This act is largely ignored in the south, particularly after 1877 when the last federal troops of the military occupation are withdrawn. The experiment in radical reconstruction is over. Democrats regain control of every southern state government. Far from the Republicans, establishing a strong presence in the region, the south becomes an area of one-party politics until the second half of the 20th century” (historyworld.net). The federal troops being withdrawn mean that things were now safe. With the war being won by the Union, the south was now headed towards a new future. Things were just starting to get settled. By settled, this means the struggle was becoming at ease. With the democrats regaining control of the southern states, this would mean good things were about to begin for these states. The reconstruction was nearing end.
While discussing segregation; the Civil Right Act of 1866 was passed. According to the website lcrm.lib.unc.edu, on April 9th, 1866—146 years ago today—Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1866, granting full citizenship and the accompanying rights to all “citizens, of every race and color, without regard to any previous condition of slavery or involuntary servitude.” This gave the same rights to both races, giving ease to the African Americans who suffered most during the period before the civil war. At least during the growing pains decade, there was something accomplished. Segregation was brought to an end and there was equality with the races. Not all things were totally equal, but there was now more things offered to African Americans. Next, the most important thing is reconstruction.
Reconstruction was the time when everyone had to adjust to the changes going on after the civil war. Whites had to find new ways of getting their work done since now they didn’t have farmers or workers. Blacks had to find new ways for making money. In some cases, blacks remained working for the whites but only in means of providing for their families. This reconstruction period wasn’t an easy process there was much work to be done. Starting fresh with slavery put behind them, blacks had to start from the bottom, working their way up. Whites now had to get out and work. This period was a difficult one for both in the economy. One struggle getting the work done while the other struggle to find work after knowing only how to work on plantations and farms. There was some success for the blacks, like finding work and even getting into office.
According to britannica.com, “Though the period has sometimes been labeled “Black Reconstruction,” the Radical governments in the South were never dominated by African Americans. There were no black governors, only two black senators and a handful of congressmen, and only one legislature controlled by blacks.” This period should be labeled as the black reconstruction because they started from nothing and had to work their way up. This was a new beginning for them. They had to catch up and claim their position within the society. Having always worked for someone not really doing for themselves, they had to be reconstructed as well not only did America. Segregation and reconstruction had a huge affect on the current society, economy, politics, and culture. In today’s current society, experiencing segregation and the reconstruction made things smoother. By smoother, the society has become not been as racial divided as normal. Equality has begun to get better in a sense. Equality in education, jobs, housing, voting, has all been made law.
In this day and age, laws are now protecting people. Though it’s not totally fixed, because of the Post Civil War time period it made certain things easier for African Americans. More people can do things they couldn’t from back then. Whites and Blacks both get alone. The economy because of that era has had its ups and downs. The people had to start over fresh. The people lost their workers or gained a new place in role in economy. Farmers had to find a whole new crew or either plant their own crops. Now the economy is at an ok state. More jobs are offered. Laws were created to protect the people. Money or pay on the jobs increased. The military haven’t had many real issues since then. Politically, there has been changed within the system. More African Americans have jobs in politics. The politics just like the world as a whole is changing and still needs certain improvements but this era helped out as for as rights.
Culturally, the world has also had improvements. Every culture has the freedom to do just about anything they please. All in all, this era helped improve many parts of America. Even though we have certain issues that we still face, this time period helped get major issues handled. Segregation and the reconstruction were what the country needed at the time. Migrating from having workers to working for yourself was a big transition for the people; blacks’ working for nothing to working for something was also a major change for them. The Growing Pains period wasn’t just a period of complete satisfaction. With every change there are ups and downs. Nothing was a for sure thing so the development and reconstruction took time.
* Online. (2013). “United States”. Retrieved on July 23, 2013 from http://www.bibme.org/citation-guide/APA/encyclopedia * Gascoigne, Bamber. “History of THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” Retrieved July 24, 2013 from http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?groupid=3227&HistoryID=ad11>rack=pthc * Shay, Alicia. (2012). “On This Day: The Civil Rights Act of 1866”. Retrieved on July 23, 2013 from https://lcrm.lib.unc.edu/blog/index.php/2012/04/09/on-this-day-the-civil-rights-act-of-1866/