Q:

Was the election of 1876 the end of Reconstruction?

A:

Quick Answer

Reconstruction ended in 1877 when the new U.S. President, Rutherford B. Hayes, ordered all federal troops to leave the southern states. According to Education Portal, that action allowed Democrats to move into the South and place restrictions on the estimated 3 to 4 million slaves who had received their freedom in 1863 under President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation.

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Full Answer

Following the end of the Civil War in 1865, Republicans tried to ensure equal rights for African American men, including the right to vote. However, over the next decade, Congress became weary of the political struggle. The American people grew tired of the violence and economic upheaval that had resulted. Ultimately, the Ku Klux Klan and other violent vigilante groups succeeded in frightening black voters away from the polls, and Democrats regained control of many state governments, putting new laws into place that would allow them to maintain supremacy of the white race.

By the summer of 1876, the presidential campaigns of Republican candidate Rutherford B. Hayes and Democratic candidate Samuel Tilden participated in fear mongering, claiming that the "other" party had plans to revive war and further economic disaster. According to Authentic History, in one of the most controversial campaigns in the history of the United States of America, an electoral commission was set up to determine the winner in a secretive deal known as "The Compromise of 1877."

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