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25. The "End" of Reconstruction: Disputed Election of 1876, and the "Compromise of 1877"

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Uploaded on Nov 21, 2008

The Civil War and Reconstruction Era, 1845-1877 (HIST 119)

This lecture focuses on the role of white southern terrorist violence in brining about the end of Reconstruction. Professor Blight begins with an account the Colfax Massacre. Colfax, Louisiana was the sight of the largest mass murder in U.S. history, when a white mob killed dozens of African Americans in the April of 1873. Two Supreme Court decisions would do in the judicial realm what the Colfax Massacre had done in the political. On the same day as the Colfax Massacre, the Supreme Court offered a narrow reading of the 14th Amendment in the Slaughterhouse cases, signaling a judicial retreat from the radicalism of the early Reconstruction years. The Cruikshank case, two years later, would overturn the convictions of the only three men sentenced for their involvement in Colfax, and marked another step away from reconstruction. Professor Blight concludes with the Panic of 1873 and the seemingly innumerable political scandals of the Grant Administration, suggesting the manner in which these events encouraged northerners to tire of the Reconstruction experiment by the early 1870s.

00:00 - Chapter 1. Introduction: The Regression of Revolution
03:46 - Chapter 2. Southern Reactions to the Fifteenth Amendment
10:46 - Chapter 3. The Slaughterhouse Cases and their Impact on the 14th Amendment
18:44 - Chapter 4. The Colfax Massacre and the Cruikshank Case
31:54 - Chapter 5. The Panic of 1873 and Scandals within the Grant Administration
44:04 - Chapter 6. The Ku Klux Klan and Conclusion

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://open.yale.edu/courses

This course was recorded in Spring 2008.

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