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Ch 1: Reconstruction and the Gilded Age (1865-1877)

About This Chapter

Watch U.S. history video lessons and learn about Reconstruction and the Gilded Age from 1865-1877. Upon completion of each lesson, take the quick multiple-choice quiz to gauge your understanding.

About This Chapter

Life in the United States after the Civil War was focused on rebuilding and reuniting the country. This period, called Reconstruction, didn't happen easily and it had plenty of failures along the way. It also saw some success. As you know today, eventually the states all came back together and we now live rather harmoniously. Later in this era was a time referred to as the Gilded Age. This period saw the growth of our nation and some more conflicts. You will learn about both of these periods as you study U.S. History from 1865-1877 in this chapter. These lessons will allow you to explore how the U.S. recovered after the Civil War and grew to include lands to the west. You'll also learn more about the conflicts involving the Native Americans and how that evolved as the government began moving people westward. Some of the things that will be covered in this chapter include:

  • The goals of the Reconstruction period
  • The adoption of the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments
  • The westward expansion of the U.S.
  • The building of the Transcontinental Railroad
  • Indian policies of the U.S. government

VideoObjective
Reconstruction Period: Goals, Success and Failures Explore what was supposed to happen during Reconstruction and what really did happen during this period.
The Reconstruction Amendments: The 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments Take a look at these specific amendments that were adopted during Reconstruction.
Westward Expansion: The Homestead Act of 1862 & the Frontier Thesis Examine how the country began the expansion into the Western area of the country, including why people wanted to move west.
Expanding the Transcontinental Railroad: History and Impact Discover how the building of this railroad system enabled the country to grow, towns to bloom and people to realize new adventures.
Native Americans: Conflict, Conquest and Assimilation During the Gilded Age Analyze the conflicts between the Native Americans and those who were moving into the west to take over the land they considered theirs.

5 Lessons in Chapter 1: Reconstruction and the Gilded Age (1865-1877)
Reconstruction Period: Goals, Success and Failures

1. Reconstruction Period: Goals, Success and Failures

Reconstruction of the South following the American Civil War lasted from 1865 - 1877 under three presidents. It wasn't welcomed by Southerners, and there were many problems throughout this process. But, was it successful?

The Reconstruction Amendments: The 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments

2. The Reconstruction Amendments: The 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments

Between 1865 and 1870, during the historical era known as Reconstruction, the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution were ratified to establish political equality for all Americans. Together, they are known as the Reconstruction Amendments.

Westward Expansion: The Homestead Act of 1862 & the Frontier Thesis

3. Westward Expansion: The Homestead Act of 1862 & the Frontier Thesis

Between the mid-1800s and the turn of the 20th century, the American frontier opened and closed abruptly. What factors influenced this land rush, and how did it help shape American history?

Expanding the Transcontinental Railroad: History and Impact

4. Expanding the Transcontinental Railroad: History and Impact

After decades of wrangling, plans were finalized for construction of a transcontinental railroad during the Civil War. After completion in 1869, the railroad changed many aspects of American life, for better or worse.

Native Americans: Conflict, Conquest and Assimilation During the Gilded Age

5. Native Americans: Conflict, Conquest and Assimilation During the Gilded Age

In the second half of the 19th century, the federal government attempted to control Native American nations. This led to violent conflicts known together as the Indian Wars. Learn about famous battles, and the attempt to 'civilize' tribes through various policies.

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