Professor Kris Teters
Survey of US History
23 August 2018
C121 Task Three
A. Major changes in race relations resulting from Reconstruction
The Thirteenth Amendment in 1865 abolished slavery. Some black persons went to find new employment, failed, and return to their owners, but tried to negotiate working conditions. General Sherman’s special Field Order, issued in 1865, set aside 40 acres of land and mules in the Sea Islands were promised for freed blacks. President Johnson ordered them removed eight months later, returning to its original owners. Renting land, or Sharecropping, became an important form of economics. The white landowners would provide land and supplies to freed blacks, who would give the owners a portion of the profits. This symbiotic relationship eased landowners’ issues with production and blacks felt that it freed them from supervision. Sharecropping proved to be uneconomical, because owners and merchants developed a monopoly of the agricultural economy, and sharecroppers continued to drown in debt (Norton, 2015).
The Freedman’s Bureau founded over four thousand schools. A reported 600,000 black children enrolled in elementary school; and white/black allies formed universities. Many Methodist and Baptist churches formed and became the center of black society. Some of these churches became the wealthiest institutions in black life, the freedpeople created enduring communities. For those who set out to find family separated by slavery, the ever-growing church community became their new inspiration (Norton, 2015).
The Fourteenth Amendment defined citizens as any male being born in the United States, ending the 3/5 clause. Because he fought the rights of Blacks so hard, President Johnson was impeached. This pushed radicals toward the Fifteenth Amendment, which prohibited states from denying citizens the right to vote based on color. Black voters (even illiterate) voted Republican, because a Republican vote meant freedom (Norton, 2015).
B. Consequences of Industrialization on American society
B1. Working Conditions and Living Conditions
Industrial accidents occurred often, killing hundreds of thousands each year. If one had an accident that did not result in a death, mangled limbs and chronic illnesses were not much better, because there was no disability insurance to replace lost income, and families suffered. The hours were long, and the pay was less than decent. Factories maintained a Darwinism attitude, and stated employees could find another job if they were unhappy (Norton, 2015).
The onset of jobs attracted immigrants to the United States, as well as citizens from farming communities and other rural people. Because the housing could not cope with the influx, low income families shared space so that two or three families resided in tiny homes and apartments. With so many stressed economically and sharing space, Crime and violence increased in American cities, especially the murder rate. Americans bla...