How did the period of Post Civil War Reconstruction affect the lives of the newly freed southern African Americans?
The southern African Americans lives changed only slightly during the period of the Reconstruction. Although freed, many Southern White Americans refused to accept the equality given through new laws (the 14th and 17th Amendments). In order to "combat" these new freedoms allotted to African Americans, other laws were passed. President Johnson passed "black codes" which limited African Americans freedoms. Other laws which were passed were called Jim Crow laws (1876-1965). These laws segregated freed African Americans from whites (on transportation and in education).
The tensions which arose during this period between whites and blacks was horrific. The first KKK (Ku Klux Klan) was organized in 1865 in order to bring about white supremacy. African Americans were lynched (hanged) and beaten throughout the south because of prejudice and hate.