Civil War to Civil Rights
Though the Civil War began the movement to extend equality to African Americans, the promises of the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments provide easier to accomplish in theory rather than in practice. The promising start towards racial equality soon faltered during the tensions of Reconstruction and laws were soon enacted across the country which enforced segregation of the races and the second-class status of African Americans.
Today, nearly 150 years since the end of the Civil War, people of all races, colors, creeds and beliefs continue the struggle to make America a nation where truly "all men are created equal."
Stories from Civil War to Civil Rights
Showing results 1-5 of 14
Booker T Washington National Monument
Though the end of the Civil War brought the 13th Amendment, ending slavery and providing emancipation for more than four milllion enslaved people, the Reconstruction era during which Booker T. Washington came of age witnessed legislation that attempted to limit African Americans' new found freedoms. Read more
Fort Davis National Historic Site
Following the Civil War, permanent African American regiments were constructed in the United States Army. Although segregated due to race, these regiments served with honor and distinction, and helped to tame the Wild West. Read more
When the Civil War began President Lincoln's primary concern was preventing the fracturing of the nation. But in 1862, with a shaky northern economy, fading optimism for victory, and growing fears of foreign intervention, Lincoln began to see freeing the slaves, not as a constitutional dilemma or a moral choice, but as a way of regaining momentum in the war. Read more
The Civil War culminated eighty years of sectional tensions - tensions begot at various times and places by debate over economic policies and practices, cultural values, the extent and reach of the Federal government, but, most importantly, the role of slavery within an American society striving for identity and economic strength on the world stage. Read more
Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
For decades the Supreme Court moved carefully around various controversies regarding slavery, but in 1857 it did no such thing. In the Dred Scott decision, it swept away decades of equivocation and ruled that the United States government had no legal right to limit the expansion of slavery into any part of the nation. Abolitionists and free-soilers were stunned. Read more