America before the civil war was staring to really develop. It was becoming a big strong economic nation. Other then becoming a economic powerhouse America was becoming a social and very political nation. America was becoming the number one nation in the market, especially with all the cotton being made by the north and the south. America started to become a very populated nation one of the most populated with all the urbanization happing people moving into cities and leaving the farms behind. In short America before the war was starting to become a very rich and popular nation the number one in economics especially and development.
Regional economic specialization, especially the demands of cultivating southern cotton, shaped settlement patterns and the national and international economy. Southern cotton furnished the raw material for manufacturing in the Northeast, while the growth in cotton production and trade promoted the development of national economic ties, shaped the international economy, and fueled the internal slave trade. Despite some governmental and private efforts to create a unified national economy, most notably the American System, the shift to market production linked the North and the Midwest more closely than either was linked to the South. Efforts to exploit the nation’s natural resources led to government efforts to promote free and forced migration of various American peoples across the continent, as well as to competing ideas about defining and managing labor systems, geographical boundaries, and natural resources. The economic changes caused by the market revolution had significant effects on migration patterns, gender and family relations, and the distribution of political power. With the opening of canals and new roads into the western territories, native-born white citizens relocated westward, relying on new community systems to replace their old family and local relationships.
All throughout the Pre Civil War Era, society was forming intellectual movements. For example, Ralph Waldo Emerson pioneered the philosophy of transcendentalism. Transcendentalism made people believe that they have direct communication with God; going to church was not necessary. It also promoted the idea "mind goes beyond matter, intuition is valuable, that each soul is part of the Great Spirit, and each person is part of a reality where only the visible is truly real." This movement also initiated empathized emotions, individualism and self-reliance. Another example of shaping culture and society in the Pre Civil War Era is the Lyceum Movement. The Lyceum movement promoted the hunger for knowledge through lecture tours by reformers, preachers, scientist, and poets. People were able to hear debates and lectures on topics they were interested in. American Lyceums became popularly; they multiplied rapidly, reaching 3,000 in 1834.
The unchanged aspects of politics masked ways in which Americans made new demands on government during 1850–1877, or revised their traditional demands, and disillusionment often resulted from finding current institutions unequal to the challenges. At the beginning of the period, for example, the influx of immigrants and capital into the United States presented the Whig and Democratic parties with a fundamentally different social and economic framework from the context in which the parties had established their identities. Party alignments changed decisively during the Civil War and Reconstruction era, but for the most part the Republican and Democratic parties aimed to serve the same functions as their predecessors, and with some important exceptions voter turnout and loyalty remained high throughout the period.
nationalism was a powerful force, but a sectional force nonetheless. 19th century America was, what historian Robert Wiebe called “a society of island communities”. Characterized the 19th century both unified and divided the Republic in its early years. The country was proud of the democratic ideals for which it had fought the war, but with an increasingly diverse population, lacking a common heritage in politics, religion, language or cultural identity, a focus was needed for national unity.
Authorities in Washington were also eager to develop national symbols, to encourage the nationalistic pride and confidence in a country which undoubtedly had severe sectional problems by the middle of the century: i.e. negro slavery in the South, steady movement to the West, and problems of urbanization and industrialization in the North.
America went into a reconstruction age after the war and it demanded the worlds attention. People were looking at the sad nation who was coming alone well quickly become a economic strong nation and quickly losing that status also. They entered a stage to get back on their feet. The world at the time saw their struggle. Cuba saw the north and Lincoln as heros. European countries saw the nation as week and broken so they took advantage of thar and took some land like Mexico for example.
After the Civil War, women began fighting for their rights during the Woman's Suffrage Movement. Women were now tired of being oppressed and used all their power to fight for equal rights. The American Woman Suffrage Association, founded in 1890, fought for women to be able to vote. Carrie Cat and Susan B. Anthony works within the confines and were leaders of this association. Furthermore, women did not have a high education before 1848; they were not allowed into colleges or universities. This was mentioned in the Seneca Falls in the Declaration of Sentiments; they were being denied access to higher education. The women who signed this document would be asking for the same education and courses as men. Moreover, the African-American civil rights movement was a reform aimed at eliminating racial discrimination against African Americans during the years of 1865-1896. Post Civil War, the federal government began a program known as Reconstruction. This provided aid to former slaves and gave them the right to officially become American citizens. During this period, blacks were able to own property and escape from poverty. Also, changes in society would be the 13th, 14th and 15th amendment. The 13th amendment freed slaves in all areas. The 14th amendment granted citizenship to any African American born on American soil and the 15th amendment granted black males the right to vote.
By the 1890s the white South felt vindicated through its belief in the newly constructed memory of the "Lost Cause of the Confederacy". The North came to accept or at least tolerate racial segregation and disfranchisement of black voters in the South. The spirit of American nationalism had returned to Dixie. The North's triumph in the Civil War marked a significant transition in American national identity. The ratification of the Fourteenth amendment settled the basic question of national identity, such as the criteria for becoming a citizen of the United States. Everyone born in the territorial boundaries of the United States or those areas and subject to its jurisdiction was an American citizen, regardless of ethnicity or social status. With a very fast growing industrial economy, immigrants were welcome from Europe, Canada Mexico and Cuba, and millions came. Becoming a full citizen was an easy process of filling out paperwork over a five-year span. However, new Asian arrivals were not welcome. Restrictions were imposed on most Chinese immigrants in the 1880s, and informal restrictions on most Japanese in 1907; by 1924 it was difficult for any Asian to enter the U.S., but children born in the U.S. to Asian parents were full citizens. The restrictions were ended on the Chinese in the 1940s and on other Asians in 1965
From the era of Reconstruction to the end of the 19th century, the United States underwent an economic transformation marked by the maturing of the industrial economy, the rapid expansion of big business, the development of large-scale agriculture, and the rise of national labor unions and industrial conflict. Indispensable to this growth and development were an unprecedented surge in immigration and urbanization after the Civil War. American society was in transition. Immigrants arriving from southern and eastern Europe, from Asia, Mexico, and Central America, were creating a new American mosaic. Mechanization brought farming into the realm of big business as well, making the United States the world's premier food producer--a position it has never surrendered. But still the land hunger of white Americans continued unabated. This led to wars against the Native Americans of the Plains and the "second great removal" of indigenous peoples from their ancient homelands.
The challenges Americans faced in the post-Civil War era extended far beyond the issue of Reconstruction and the challenge of an economy without slavery. Political and social repair of the nation was paramount, as was the correlative question of race relations in the wake of slavery. Congress was known for being rowdy and inefficient. It was not unusual to find that a quorum could not be achieved because too many members were drunk or otherwise preoccupied with extra-governmental affairs.