Rutherford B. Hayes's Presidency

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How did the Compromise of 1877 affect the country?

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The Compromise of 1877 affected our country in several ways. There was a dispute over the presidential election results of 1876. It was undetermined who won the election in four states. These states had a total of 20 electoral votes. Since Samuel Tilden only had a 19 electoral vote lead without counting these four states, it was necessary to determine who won the vote in those four states. As a result of the Compromise of 1877, the Democrats were willing to give the electoral votes to Rutherford B. Hayes, the Republican candidate. The allowed Rutherford B. Hayes and the Republicans to win the election of 1876 by one electoral vote. However, this action came with a price.

The Democrats in the South were so desperate to end Reconstruction, they were willing to concede the election to the Republicans. In return, the military that was enforcing Reconstruction would leave the South. This allowed the southerners to begin to oversee the Reconstruction process. After Reconstruction ended, white southerners began to gain control of more state offices. Eventually, laws were passed that reversed many of the improvements that were made for African-Americans during Reconstruction. For example, Jim Crow laws were passed. African-Americans faced segregation in most areas throughout the South. The use of poll taxes and literacy tests denied African-Americans the right to vote for many years. Whites were exempted from these restrictions because of the grandfather clauses that were established. The ending of Reconstruction returned the South to conditions that were very similar to those that existed in the days before the Civil War began. The main difference was that slavery didn’t exist.

Thus, the Compromise of 1877 had a very significant impact on our country and the people of our country.

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