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Answered 2011-06-15 18:16:48
Consequences of the US Civil War upon American SocietyThe War Between the States produced sweeping changes and events in American society. Among the most significant consequences were:
  • The Union of the states was preserved.
  • Slavery ended when the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified.
  • U.S. Grant became President of, arguably,the most corrupt administration in American history.
  • Reconstruction of the South began and it sowed the seeds of future racial conflict for over a century to come.
  • Racial prejudice in the South increased rather than decreased.
  • Southern animosity toward the North was intensified.
  • Northern Carpet-Baggers and Southern Scalawags took control of the governments of the former Confederate states.
  • The Ku Klux Klan, originally designed as an "American Pride" type of group, was organized and shortly thereafter began terrorizing African-Americans & those who sympathized with them. After this horrifying turn of values, Nathan B. Forrest left the group and denounced it.
  • Racial segregation replaced slavery in the South.
  • Southern states enacted "Jim Crow" laws when Reconstruction ended and Southerners regained control of the state governments. The laws basically reverted the lot of African-American citizens to a life not so different from slavery.
  • Southern African-Americans migrated to the North in large numbers.
  • The South became less agricultural as time progressed. "King Cotton" began to be replaced by industrial and other economic entities.
  • African-Americans eventually were allowed access to education in the South, but that education was in a separate and unequal school system.
  • African-Americans were finally allowed the right to vote, but that right was severely curtailed by unfair laws, demagogue politicians and intimidation.
  • Civil Rights organizations were formed to seek social and political equity for African-Americans.
  • African-Americans began to achieve equity, but many obstacles still remained in their way.
  • The Civil Rights Act was passed and a more concerted effort to ensure those rights was undertaken by the Federal government.
  • Southerners reacted to Civil Rights laws, those who supported them and those who tried to ensure adherence to them with violence. Lynching was replaced or augmented by assassinations of Civil Rights leaders and workers.
  • Integration of Southern schools began. Segregationists protested vehemently and fought against it.
  • African-Americans began migrating from the Northern cities back to the South.
  • Job opportunities for African-Americans began to improve in the South.
  • African-Americans began winning elections in small Southern towns.
  • African-Americans began winning elections in larger Southern cities.
  • African-Americans began winning elections in Southern state governments.
  • African-Americans began winning elections in the US Congress and Senate.
  • European-American Northerners began to migrate to the "Sun Belt" states in the South and in the West.
  • Inter-racial relationships and marriages, which were formerly against the law, began to be tolerated and accepted by most Southerners.
  • Outlaw organizations such as the KKK lost the support of most Southerners (and Northerners).
  • European-American & African-American Southerners who were born after integration and The Civil Rights Act began to seek justice for the victims of racially motivated crimes which were not properly addressed by their predecesors.
  • The road to the day that "...all men are created equal...." becoming a reality has become less hazardous and more traveled by European-Americans & African-Americans alike.
  • Although racial equality has not yet been fully realized in America, there is now "light at the end of the tunnel".

Of course there are other consequences upon American society as a result of the US Civil War than are listed above.

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