Reconstruction And The West Essay

767 words - 4 pages

Reconstruction and the West

After the Civil War in the south, the south met many new challenges. The south needed to reinvent its economic, political and cultural environment. In November 1868 Ulysses S. Grant was elected president. Grant would not have won the election without the votes of former slaves who were given the right to vote post- Civil War. Congress passed the 14th and 15th Amendments to protect the rights of all people if born ...view middle of the document...

A political power struggle formed in the south creating economic woes for the land. The landowners needed farmers and the farmers needed land. The power struggle devastated the economy of the south. The Reconstruction of the south goals was to provide equal rights and freedoms of equality for all mankind in the United States of America. Congress adapted new policy, and procedures to assist with reform of state laws and practices, some were successful and some were unsuccessful to date.
President Grant outlined a solution for the Native Americans during his inaugural address. He described the Native Americans as "the original occupants of this land." The Peace Policy approach attempted to move Indians closer to White civilization (and ultimately U.S. citizenship) by housing them on reservations and helping them become farmers (American President, 2013). The reservations were reduced and the tribes were split into small family units. The Americans also wanted the Indians to conform to American cultural beliefs. The Native Americans were stripped of their beliefs and customs practices. Indians were forced to move on reservations to farm and raise livestock. The land the Indians were given was not sufficient for farming, many Indians starved to death. Their children were taken away from them to attend boarding school so they may adapt Christian values and customs. Although the Indians were trying to survive on reservations in the Dakotas, the children were shipped away to relinquish all of their cultural identity to conform to the Euro American...

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