Reconstruction

1866-1877

The Union splits because of the issue of slavery... This time period is known as the reconstruction time period because at this time (after the Civil War) the government is trying to bring the Union back together.

Andrew Johnson

Lived from 1808 to 1875. He was first vice president but soon became the 17th President of the United States (1865 to 1869) after former President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. President Johnson took a moderate approach to restoring the South to the Union but this clashed with Radical Republicans. He was impeached by Congress in 1868, but he was not removed from office.

Thaddeus Stevens

He lived from 1792 to 1868. He was the most famous Radical Republican in the House of Representatives (1849-53, 1859-68). With Charles Sumner in the Senate, they both opposed President Lincoln's Reconstruction plan as too lenient and thought the Union should be harsher towards the South.

14th Amendment

In 1868, the 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States grants citizenship and equal civil and legal rights to African Americans and also to slaves who had been emancipated after the American Civil War. This included those under the phrase “all persons born or naturalized in the United States.”

15th Amendment

This amendment grants African American men to right to vote. It was formally adopted into the U.S. Constitution on March 30, 1870 and passed by Congress the year before. The amendment reads: “the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” Although the amendment is passed, people still try to prevent African Americans from exercising their right to vote, especially in the South.