At the close of the Civil War, and shortly after the 13th amendment to abolish slavery was passed in 1865, President Abraham Lincoln introduced a program for Reconstruction.

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At the close of the Civil War, and shortly after the 13th amendment to abolish slavery was passed in 1865, President Abraham Lincoln introduced a program for Reconstruction.

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In 1865, the Freedmenís Bureau was created by Congress to provide education and medical care to former slaves and to protect their legal rights.

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After slavery was abolished, Frederick Douglass devoted his life to the fair and just treatment of Blacks. Douglass used both the printed word and fiery oration to agitate for change.

Throughout Reconstruction, African Americans experienced many changes in their social and political lives. They developed their own communities and institutions. Many schools were founded during this period. Men were given the right to vote and hold office.

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African Americans were represented at every level of government - local, state, national.

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Reconstruction waned during the 1870s as a result of political opposition, violence against Black citizens, and the economic depression of 1873.

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Author: MSRC