What are two reasons why the United States had to reconstruct the South?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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There were several reasons why the United States had to reconstruct the South after the Civil War ended. The first reason had to do with the devastation caused in the South by the Civil War. The South was in ruins after the Civil War ended. Most of the fighting during the Civil War was in the South. At the end of the war, the North was waging total war on the South. This meant the northern armies destroyed everything in their path. Thus, after the Civil War ended, rebuilding the South was necessary.

A second reason for reconstructing the South was to give the freed slaves a chance to survive. Southern attitudes were very unfriendly to the former slaves. Many southerners didn’t want the freed slaves to gain rights and equal opportunities. Thus, it was necessary for the government to develop rules, laws, policies, and amendments to attempt to force the South to treat the former slaves fairly.