Republican Reconstruction and Its Achievements
Although the Reconstruction period is often regretted numerous failures and lost opportunities, it also had valuable successes. The most significant achievement was creating a new legal framework that established “equality of all Americans under the banner of citizenship” (Guelzo 12). This was ensured by adopting the law requiring the southern states to ratify the Thirteenth, the Fourteenth, and Fifteenth amendments to the Constitution. These legal achievements were supplemented by the actual involvement of African Americans in public life and their membership in various political organizations (“Reconstruction”). Combined, this formed the foundations for the further enhancement of citizenship rights and racial justice despite significant antagonism from various society members.
Apart from the protection of African American rights, there were several other substantial achievements. First, Reconstruction “restored a federal Union,” countering divisional trends existing after the Civil War (Guelzo 12). Second, it also brought some social developments, including the establishment of public schools funded by the states in the South (“Reconstruction”). Finally, it was accompanied by ambitious economic programs intended to improve infrastructure and support various enterprises (“Reconstruction”). Therefore, the Republican Reconstruction achieved certain goals, which were valuable for the further development of the country.
Guelzo, Allen G. Reconstruction: A Concise History. Oxford University Press, 2018.
“Reconstruction.” History, 2009, Web.