About This Chapter
American Reconstruction & the Gilded Age (1865-1877) - Chapter Summary
Use the lessons in this chapter to refresh your understanding of America after the Civil War. Our instructors look at what Abraham Lincoln had planned for the post-war country and at how his successor tried to follow through. You'll examine the achievements and scandals of Ulysses S. Grant's administration.
Other lessons explore what life was like for the defeated southerners, newly-freed African-Americans and Native Americans who were having their lands overtaken by settlers. After completing this chapter's videos, you should know more about topics including:
- Lincoln's plans for the union
- Andrew Johnson's impeachment
- The 13th, 14th and 15th amendments
- How African-Americans fared during Reconstruction
- Westward expansion, including the Homestead Act of 1862 and the transcontinental railroad
- The Indian Wars
- Native Americans during the Gilded Age
- An overview of the achievements and failures of the Reconstruction era
These lessons are short, about five minutes on average, and include multiple-choice quizzes that let you assess your learning. You can watch as your schedule permits, on a computer, smartphone or tablet. It's easy to use the clickable timeline in each lesson to review important points, and if you still have questions, our instructors are available to help.
1. President Lincoln's Legacy: Plans for a Reconstructed Union
Before the guns of the American Civil War fell silent, President Abraham Lincoln was making plans for the reconstruction of the South. In this lesson, learn what his plans involved and the controversy surrounding them.
2. President Andrew Johnson: Attempts to Continue Lincoln's Reconstruction Plan
When President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, the task of Reconstruction fell to President Andrew Johnson. He was soon at odds with many different factions in the nation. While Johnson was not successful in domestic policy, his administration had a few foreign successes.
3. The Impeachment of Andrew Johnson: Conflict Between President and Congress
Congressional Reconstruction, guided by Radical Republicans, aggressively pursued political equality for African Americans as defined by several pieces of legislation and the 14th Amendment. Conflict between Congress and President Andrew Johnson escalated until he was impeached.
4. President Ulysses S. Grant: Election, Successes and Corruption
Ulysses S. Grant, the Union hero of the Civil War, was elected in 1868, the last U.S. president to have been a slave owner. Despite his popularity, the nation faced social, economic and political difficulties, and his administration was shrouded in corruption.
5. 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.
6. Reconstruction's Effects on African Americans: Politics, Education and Economy
The era in U.S. history known as Reconstruction presented many new opportunities to African Americans, especially in the South. For the first time, freedmen were free to pursue economic independence, education, religion and politics. These pursuits are embodied in the accomplishments of four men: Alonzo Herndon, Booker T. Washington, Jonathan Gibbs and Hiram Revels.
7. Life in the South After the Civil War
Following the Civil War, the era of Reconstruction was a difficult time for Southerners. Their land was destroyed, their political institutions were overrun by outsiders, the economy was in transition and their society was in upheaval. It was in this climate that the Ku Klux Klan was born and the Redeemers sought to reestablish the Old South.
8. 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?
9. 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.
10. The Indian Wars: Struggle Between Native Americans and Settlers
As America expanded into the West, whites often encroached on Indian land and resources. Many Native Americans defended their territory, leading to a series of conflicts known as the Indian Wars.
11. 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.
12. The End of Reconstruction and the Election of 1876
Since the end of the Civil War in 1865, Republicans had tried to Reconstruct the South and secure equal rights for African American men. But a series of factors convened to bring Reconstruction to an end in 1877.
13. 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?
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Other chapters within the AEPA History (NT302): Practice & Study Guide course
- Historical Concepts & Research
- Understanding Historical Resources
- Events & Contributions of Early Civilizations
- Ancient Near East Civilizations
- The Bronze Age in the Near East
- Ancient Africa & the Americas
- Dynasties & Confucianism in Ancient China
- Culture & Beliefs of Ancient India
- Contributions & History of Ancient Greece
- Hellenism & Athens
- The Roman Republic Rises
- History of the Fall of Rome
- History of Early Christianity
- The Byzantine Empire & Culture
- The Origins of Islam
- Contributions of Medieval European Politics
- The Crusades & Church Reform in Medieval Europe
- The Hundred Years' War
- Asia in the Middle & Late Middle Ages
- Africa & the Americas in the Middle & Late Middle Ages
- History of the Renaissance
- The Protestant Reformation in Europe & Worldwide
- The Age of European Exploration & Discovery
- History of the Elizabethan Era
- Colonialism in Europe, Africa & the New World
- Major Figures & Events of the Scientific Revolution
- The Enlightenment
- Asia & Africa in the 15th-18th Centuries
- Political & Technological World Developments (1750-1914)
- European & Japanese Imperialism
- Battles & Consequences of World War I
- Causes & Events of World War II
- Civilizations of the Americas Before & After Colonization
- Colonial Settlements & Battles in North America (1497-1732)
- Events Leading to the American Revolution (1700-1774)
- Events & Leaders of the American Revolution
- The Birth of the United States (1776-1800)
- The Virginia Dynasty
- Jacksonian Democracy
- Everyday Life in Antebellum America
- Manifest Destiny & American Expansion
- Sectional Crisis & the Start of the Civil War (1850-1861)
- Battles & Effects of the American Civil War (1861-1865)
- American Industrialization & Urbanization (1870-1900)
- Figures & Events of the Progressive Era (1900-1917)
- American Imperialism & World War I
- American Life & Culture During the Roaring 20s (1920-1929)
- The Great Depression in the U.S. (1929-1940)
- American Involvement in World War ll (1941-1945)
- World Events & Politics After World War II (1946-1959)
- Events & Presidents During the Cold War (1950-1973)
- American Civil Disobedience, Protests & Activism (1954-1973)
- America in the 1970s
- America in the 1980s
- Politics & Major Figures of Contemporary America (1992-2013)
- AEPA History Flashcards