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AMH 2020 Reconstruction and Beyond lecture notes.docx

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AMH 2020
Winfield Craig

Victoria Peralta-Rapale AMH2020: Reconstruction and Beyond 9/17/2013  Lady liberty picture  African American able to go to polls  Freedman’s Bureau (same slide as previous notes) o 40 acres and a mule  Andrew Johnson (problem) o Big believer in state’s rights o Doesn’t believe federal government can take property and redistribute o Overly forgiving o Pardons former soldiers and government officials and gives them their land back (that had been given to African Americans to live on and taken back)  Importance of mobility o Reunite with family o Freedom meant, “we could move around and change bosses.” –A freedman o Contracts restrict mobility o African American start to travel extreme distances to try and meet and find their families (when separated from slavery)  Sharecropping o Diagram on ppt o Usually sharecroppers are left with nothing at the end of the season. Some owe their planters more money and so they have to work more to give more money to the owner o Usually a clause that says if the worker breaks the contract then the owner doesn’t have to pay them  Changes in productivity? o “You cant get only about 2/3 as much out of em now as you could when they were slaves” Arkansas planter o Changes in labor participation?  As slaves its all of the family: women, men and children (around age 9) almost to death working on the fields  Children now freed can go to school and play  Women didn’t work in fields and decided to take care of children and families and other things  Elderly can live out their lives in peace somewhat that they couldn’t in slavery  “Black Codes” o Note: Professor said we don’t need to know quotes! o Many crimes were petty o African Americans charged with petty crimes  Ex) Vagrancy: “homelessness” or loitering were an example of what they were charged with (most common) o Every southern state had their own sets of “black codes”  Convict Leasing: A return to Slavery? o “This does seem simply a return to another form of slavery.” – George Campbell (british tourist) o Leasing out convicts to work for other private companies (for free) basically putting them back into slaver
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