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Paper Topic:

The Reconstruction Amendments

One of the first and most important pieces of legislation to come out of the Civil War was the Freedman 's Bureau . This was a federal agency that was formed to aid former slaves or refugees as they were called , during Reconstruction . It was a major motivation of the Radical Republicans members of Congress who absolutely hated slavery while it existed in the United States as well as those who would seek to give slavery refuge in this country . Also , it was the motivation of the Radical Republicans to prevent the possibility of

the Civil War having been fought in vain There were over 620 ,000 casualties in that war and for a country of not more than 31 million inhabitants such losses were staggering for both sides (Burns , 1989 ) If the former four million slaves were put back into conditions that closely resembled , then why was the Civil War fought in the first place ? This ideology was believed by the Radical Republicans and efforts were made to make sure that such possibilities did not come to reality . The Bureau helped to establish , more than one hundred hospitals as well as hundreds of tons of food for the refugees during their tenure in the South . The Bureau gave more than 15 million rations of food to African Americans and there was no disputing their presence within the South . It was the efforts which were exerted in the field of education which resulted in the greatest reaction from the Southern whites at that time . By the end of 1865 , just six months after the end of the Civil War , over 90 ,000 slaves were enrolled in school . Such efforts were met with stiff resistance by Southern whites and many of these schools were burnt down in reaction . By 1870 , more than 1 ,000 schools which were established in the South and enrollment and attendance were only increasing during the time that these schools were present . In all , over 4 ,300 schools were opened for African Americans as a result of the Freedman 's Bureau (Fleming , 1980 pg . 189 What would later be seen as a sense of contention was the fact that these schools were completely segregated . This was to be understood and at this time , little to no efforts was made for these schools to be integrated . It was first the motivation of the Freedman 's Bureau to even maintain the existence of the schools in the first place . Integrating equality for the African Americans in the Southern states . It was also the motivations of the Freedman 's Bureau to establish a fair court system for African Americans since there existed , no illusion , that African Americans were going to receive a fair trial from the Southern whites who would sit on their juries . Separate courts were established to try cases which involved African Americans but such a strong resistance from the Southern whites resulted , such courts were eventually done away with and dismantled (Fleming , 1980 pg . 202 White resistance to...

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