Florida During Reconstruction By: Ella Rose EmbryReconstruction – What to do With the South After the War ● Once the Union defeated the Confederacy and the Civil War was over, the Union faced the overwhelming task of how to treat the rebel southern states and bring them back into the United States. ● The war destroyed many of the southern states’ major cities and buildings along with much of the way of life in the southern states. “Civil W ar and Reconstruction”. Florida Department of State , www.dos.myflorida.com/florida -facts/florida -history/a -brief -history/civil -war – and -reconstruction . Accessed 15 April 2019.● Florida had no major Civil War battles fought in its state. So Florida did not have much rebuilding to do. ● They still had problems though. The main problem was what to do with the slaves that were now free. ● Also, they needed to rebuild the economy. FLORIDA “Civil W ar and Reconstruction”. Florida Department of State, www.dos.myflorida.com/florida -facts/florida -history/a -brief -history/civil -war – and -reconstruction . Accessed 15 April 2019.Andrew Johnson Tries to Restore the Union ● Andrew Johnson was Vice President to Abraham Lincoln. He was the only southern senator who stayed loyal to the Union during the war. He became president six weeks after the Abraham Lincoln was assasinated ● He granted amnesty to most confederates and allowed the southern states to elect their own new governments. ● The southern states, including Florida, quickly enacted Black Codes “Andrew Johnson”. History, www.history.com/topics/us – presidents/andrewjohnson . Accessed 16 April 2019. ● Because of this, the Radical Republicans were mad at him because they were dedicated to the equal treatment of freed slaves. ● The fight between Johnson and the Radical Republicans grew worse and eventually, Johnson was impeached by Congress.Ulysses S. Grant Becomes President● Ulysses S. Grant was commander of the Union Army, and later elected as the 18th President of the United States in 1868. ● By the time Grant became President, the KKK had gained enormous power in the the southern states including Florida ● Grant was a Republican and with the help of a Republican controlled Congress, cracked down on racism and terrorism in the south. ● Under his leadership, many laws were passed to help empower freed slaves, including giving them the right to vote. “Grant, Reconstruction, and the KKK”. American Experience , www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/grant -kkk/ , Accessed 16 April 2019Governer Abraham Allison● Abraham K. Allison became Governor of Florida in 1865 after Governor Milton committed suicide at the defeat of the Confederacy. ● He went into hiding as federal troops came into Florida but was captured and spent several months at Ft. Pulaski. ● Originally, he wanted to take advantage of Johnson’s southern sentiments and simplify relations between his government and the U.S. as quickly as possible. But too many obstacles prevented this from happening. ● In 1870 he was convicted of intimidating negroes and spent 6 months in jail. Civil W ar and Reconstruction”. Florida Department of State , www.dos.myflorida.com/florida -facts/florida -history/a -brief -history/civil -war -and – reconstruction . Accessed 15 April 2019.Harrison Reed, Carpetbagger Governor ● Harrison Reed became active in the Republican party and was appointed by the Union as the Tax Commissioner of Florida. ● Because he was from the North, he was called a carpetbagger. A carpetbagger was a derogatory term given to northerners who came to the southern states after the war ● He was elected governor in 1868 under Florida’s new constitution and was governor when they were re -entered into the union ● He appointed the state’s first black Secretary of State. ● Under his governorship, many new schools were built. ● He was disliked by Florida’s leading democrats who tried to impeach him. “Florida Under Civil Strife”. Florida in the Civil War , http://floridahistory.org/civilwar . Accessed 14 April 2019.Jonathan Clarkson Gibbs: Florida’s First Black Secretary of State ● Gibbs was the first and only black Secretary of State in Florida. He was appointed in 1868. ● He was born free in Philadelphia and eventually attended Dartmouth College. ● He was an abolitionist Presbyterian minister. ● Gibbs believed that every black person deserved an education and fought so that all african americans had an education. ● He also served as Superintendent of Public Instruction. “Jonathan Gibbs (1827 -1874)”. Black Past, https://www.blackpast.org/african -american – history/gibbs -jonathan -1827 -1874 . Accessed 15 April 2019.13th Amendment ● Abraham Lincoln was able to secure freedom for all the slaves through the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution. ● It passed the Senate on April 8, 1864, and the House on January 31, 1865, before the Civil War actually ended. ● The Amendment states “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude….shall exist within the United States”. ● Slavery was finally abolished, but there would be a long road ahead to secure equality for the freedmen. “Duhaime’s Law Dictionary, 13th Amendment”. Duhaime , http://www.duhaime.org/LegalDictionary/T/ThirteenthAmendment . Accessed 17 April 2019.Black Codes ● Andrew Johnson initially allowed the southern states to govern themselves after the war. ● Every southern state including Florida passed a series of laws known as Black Codes that were meant to suppress the freed slaves. ● They were not allowed to vote, buy property, and made to work as plantation helpers. ● These laws showed that the south had not learned its lesson and were determined to keep blacks inferior. ● These racist laws eventually backfired on southern states. The laws enraged northerners which led to a sweeping victory for Radical Republicans who began a new form of Reconstruction for the south that was much harsher. “Black Codes”. History, www.history.com/topics/black -history/black -codes . Accessed 16 April 2019.14th Amendment● This important amendment granted citizenship to all citizens born in the United States, including former slaves, and guaranteed all people “equal protection of the laws”. ● This overturned the previous Dred Scott Supreme Court decision that stated that the black man could not claim the rights of citizenship given to other white Americans. ● It also became the basis of other Supreme Court decisions giving blacks and other races numerous rights, including those listed in the Constitution’s Bill of Rights. ● The amendment also gave the federal government power to punish the states that violated these rights, and shifted power from states to the federal government. “14th Amendment”. History, https://www.history.com/topics/black – history/fourteenth -amendment#section_4. Accessed 17 April 2019.15th Amendment● The 15th Amendment gave every citizen, including former slaves, the right to vote. ● The amendment was eventually passed in 1870 after an attempt by President Andrew Johnson to veto it. ● The amendment also gave Congress the power to enforce the right using “appropriate legislation”. ● This power would become useful years later after most southern states passed laws to block the right to vote from blacks. “15th Amendment”. History, https://www.history.com/topics/black – history/fifteenth -amendment. Accessed 17 April 2019.Civil Rights Bill of 1868 ● After the 13th Amendment passed, Congress realized that the south was going to do anything possible to keep freed slaves from truly being free. ● Congressman Thaddeus Stevens formed a committee to deal with this issue and came up with the Civil Rights Bill of 1868. ● This legislation was a precursor to the 14th Amendment. ● It gave full citizenship to freed slaves and guaranteed them rights that all American citizens enjoyed. ● Although the Act passed in the Congress and Senate, President Andrew Johnson vetoed the bill.“Civil Rights Act of 1868”. Encyclopedia, https://www.encyclopedia.com/social -sciences -and -law/law/law/civil -rights -act -1866 . Accessed 16 April 2019E xample of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:1. Mixed Education Prohibited by Florida Constitution – 1887 ● Florida was one of the few southern states that not only passed legislation regarding keeping blacks separate, they added it to their state constitution. ● The constitution stated, “the schools for white children and the schools for Negro children shall be conducted separately.” ● This meant that black people received an inferior education to white people. ● Black schools received less funding and the facilities and options were considerably less than white schools. “Examples of Jim Crow Laws, October 1960”. The Jackson Sun, orig.jacksonsun.com/civilrights/sec1_crow_laws.shtml. Accessed 16 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:2. Interracial Dating/Marriages Prohibited – 1887 ● The law stated that, “All courtships between a white person and a Negro person, or between a white person and a person of Negro descent to the fourth generation inclusive, are hereby forever prohibited.” ● Florida justified the law saying it was necessary to ensure racial purity and integrity. ● Richard and Mildred Loving bravely changed this law. They were an interracial couple who lived in Virginia, a state that had a similar law. They were married legally in Washington D.C. where no such law existed. But when they returned to Virginia, they were arrested and sentenced to a year in jail. ● They sued the state of Virginia and in 1967 in Loving v. Virginia, the Supreme Court ruled these types of laws unconstitutional. “Loving v. Virginia”. History, https://www.history.com/topics/civil – rights -movement/loving -v-virginia. Accessed 17 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:3. Prisons & Juvenile Delinquents: Separate Buildings – 1891 ● Even in the prison system, blacks and whites had to be seperated. ● Florida passed laws that mandated blacks and whites be housed in separate buildings and could not work prison duties together. ● In jails, prisoners were not allowed to be in the same cell together. ● Thanks to the rise of the Ku Klux Klan, white people often took matters into their own hands when a black person was accused of committing a crime against a white person. Between 1882 and 1968, 4,743 people were lynched in the United States. “History of Lynchings”. NAACP , https://www.naacp.org/history -of-lynchings/ . Accessed 20 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:4. Separate Facilities for Railcars, Streetcars & Public Transportation – 1890 ● Florida law required that blacks sit in separate railcars on a train. ● Railroad was a major way of traveling post Civil War and this affected many black people. ● Street cars also had to have separate sections for blacks and whites. ● Eventually, any public transportation such as a bus or cab had to be separated by color. “Segregation of Railroad Cars”. History Engine, https://historyengine.richmond.edu/episodes/view/3273 . Accessed 21 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:5. Separate Public Beaches -1911 ● Florida law mandated that public beaches could not be shared by blacks and whites. ● Florida had designated white beaches and designated “colored” beaches. ● This law extended to other commercial areas surrounding beaches such as hotels, bars, and nightclubs. ● The police in Miami often arrested black and white people who congregated together on beaches, or at night clubs. “Miami Beach’s Long Shameful History of Segregation”. Miami New Times , https://www.miaminewtimes.com/news/remembering -miami – beachs -shameful -history -of-segregation -and -racism -8306647 . Accessed 22 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:6. Hospitals – Separate Wards – 1896 ● Under Florida law, hospitals and doctor’s offices were segregated. ● It was perfectly legal for white doctors and nurses to refuse to treat a black person. ● Blood was also segregated which meant that a black person in need of a blood transfusion could not receive the blood of a white person. ● Very few hospitals existed that actually treated black people, so if a black person was in need of emergent medical help, they likely didn’t receive it unless they were lucky enough to live close to one of those few hospitals that would treat them. ● Black people received such horrible health care that those born under Jim Crow laws are said to still face health effects today. “Jim Crow Law are Gone, But They’re Still Making Black People Sick”. Tonic, https://tonic.vice.com/en_us/article/wj73j9/health -effects -jim -crow -laws -cancer . Accessed 22 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:7. Restaurants, Hotels & Theaters – Segregated – 1901 ● An example of a law keeping restaurants segregated: “It shall be unlawful to conduct a restaurant or other place for the serving of food in the city, at which white and colored people are served in the same room, unless such white and colored persons are effectually separated by a solid partition extending from the floor upward to a distance of seven feet or higher, and unless a separate entrance from the street is provided for each compartment.” ● These types of laws meant black people were often not allowed in many restaurants or hotels. ● In fact, there was a publication called “The Green Book” that listed restaurants and hotels across the south where black people were welcome. This was based on a recent movie that won the 2018 Academy Award. “Jim Crow Laws and Racial Segregation”. Social Welfare History Project, https://socialwelfare.library.vcu.edu/eras/civil -war -reconstruction/jim – crow -laws -andracial -segregation/ . Accessed 22 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:8. Toilets & Water Fountains – Separate Public Facilities – 1898 ● Florida, like every southern state, had a Jim Crow law that required separate toilets for whites and black in every public building. ● The state also required that no black person was allowed to drink water from a public water fountain that wasn’t designated “colored”. ● Many public facilities didn’t have bathrooms for black people, and if they did, they didn’t have separate baths for men and women. “JIm Crow Laws”. History , https://www.history.com/topics/early -20th -century -us/jim -crow -laws . Accessed 22 April 2019.Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:9. Voting Suppression Laws – 1887 ● After the 15th Amendment was passed, southern states had to find creative ways to keep black people from voting. ● Poll Tax: Florida law required people to pay a fee in order to vote. Most blacks lived below the poverty level and could not afford to pay the fee. ● Literacy Tests: Laws were passed that required people to pass a literacy test before voting. Because most black people had never learned to read, they couldn’t pass the literacy test to vote. ● Grandfather Clause: Allowed anyone who was entitled to vote prior to 1866 (which was no black person) to be exempt from the literacy test or poll tax. ● Through these voter suppression laws, Florida eliminated almost 100% of blacks from voting. “Florida’s History of Suppressing Blacks’ Votes”. Tampa Bay Times, https://www.tampabay.com/news/perspective/floridas -history -of- suppressing -blacks -votes/2146546 . Published 10 October 2013. Accessed 19 April 2019Examples of Florida’s Jim Crow Laws:10. Burial – Separate Cemeteries – 1898 ● Jim Crow laws humiliated black people even in death. ● Black people could not be kept in the same morgue as white people. ● Only black coroners could oversee the death of a black person. ● And of course, black people could not be buried in the same cemetery as a white person. JIm Crow Laws”. History , https://www.history.com/topics/early -20th -century -us/jim -crow -laws . Accessed 22 April 2019.A Slow End to Jim CrowBrown v. Board of Education ● In 1954, the Supreme Court ruled that segregation in public schools is unconstitutional. ● The court determined that the policy of “seperate but equal” can not exist. ● Separate is inherently UNequal. ● This was a huge victory for civil rights and began the civil rights movement in the United States. “The Supreme Court, Expanding Civil Rights. Landmark Cases, Brown v. Board of Education, PBS, Thirteen: Media with Impact, https://www.thirteen.org/wnet/supremecourt/rights/landmark_brown.html . Accessed 20 April 2019.A Slow End to Jim CrowLoving v Virginia ● In 1967, the Supreme Court struck down all state laws banning marriages between black and white people. ● The court ruled these kind of laws violated the 14th Amendment. ● The case involved Mildred and Richard Loving and the anniversary of this deicision is referred to as the Loving Day. ● This was another victory for civil rights. “Loving v. Virginia”. History, https://www.history.com/topics/civil -rights -movement/loving -v-virginia. Accessed 17 April 2019.A Slow End to Jim CrowCivil Rights Movement ● Cases such as Brown v. Board and Loving v. Virginia sparked a social movement in the 1950s and 1960s for blacks to gain equal justice under the law in the United States. ● As blacks organized and started gaining momentum for change, southern white people fought back. Many southern cities and several northern cities rioted and became violent. ● Martin Luther King, the black leader of the movement, sought change in peaceful ways. ● In 1963, more than 200,000 protesters participated in a peaceful “March on Washington” where they gathered in our nation’s capital. Martin Luther King delivered his famous “I Have a Dream Speech” calling for equality for blacks . “Civil Rights Movementt”. History, “15th Amendment”. History, https://www.history.com/topics/black -history/fifteenth – amendment. Accessed 17 April 2019.A Slow End to Jim CrowThe Civil Rights Act of 1964 ● The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the landmark law giving black people equal rights according to the constitution. ● President Kennedy introduced the legislation but was assassinated before it was passed. ● President Lyndon Johnson passed it through and signed it into law in 1964. ● The law prohibits unequal voter registrations laws, segregation in public schools, employment and public education. ● Jim Crow had finally come to an end.Florida Slowly Integrates, But Not Without a Fight ● The passage of the Civil Rights Act brought violence to many cities in the United States. It was a time of unsettled chaos. ● After Martin Luther King was killed, cities like Miami and Tallahasee erupted into riots that lasted for weeks. ● Many schools and businesses in Florida and other states were slow to comply with the Civil Rights Act. ● Some schools in Florida did not integrate until the 1970s. ● But finally, after centuries of slavery, and another century of suppression, all races are seen equal under the laws of the United States.
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