Reconstruction Timeline

Emma Steffer


Emancipation Proclamation

January 1 1863

This was important because it freed all the slaves in the Confederate states and showed that Lincoln was willing to take drastic measures to find a solution.


1863 - 1877

This event was the process of trying to bring the South successfully back into the Union and is important because of the laws and events that took place in this time.

Radical Republicans

1863 - 1869

These people were the ones that were completely against slavery and wanted very harsh reconstruction terms, they are important because they shaped history in the decisions they made or helped make.

Lincoln's 10% Plan

December 1863 - 1865

This bill showed what Lincoln' plan was to get states back in the Union.

Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction

December 8 1863

Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction. It offers pardon and restoration of property -- except slaves -- to Confederates who swear allegiance to the Union and agree to accept emancipation.

Lincoln's Reelection/ Second Term

1864 - April 14 1865

This shows that even though he took some crazy steps to fixing the South, people still liked him and thought he was a good leader.

Wade-Davis Bill/Radical Republicans

July 1864

This bill is important because it shows how the Radical Republicans in Congress were not happy with Lincoln's plan, so they created a new one where a majority of the white males in a state had to swear themselves in, along with other tasks.

Thirteenth Amendment

January 1865 - February 1865

This was important because it was the first Constitutional Amendment to regarding the former slaves.

Lincoln's Reconstruction Plan

1865 - 1867

This is important because it showed how lenient Lincoln was willing to be letting confederate states back into the Union, as only 10% of white males in a state had to swear their allegiance with the North.

Black Codes

1865 - 1866

These codes are important because they show that even though the South was adhering to the criteria for readmission the north had instilled, they were still unwilling to give former slaves rights.

Carpetbagger vs. Scalawag

1865 - 1870

Carpetbaggers were well educated people that took their belongings into the South to become planters or businessmen whereas Scalawags were republicans from the South.

LIncoln's Assassination

April 14 1865

This is important because it shows that this was the end of LIncoln's mild plans for reconstruction and the Rad. Republicans were about to take control.

Johnson's "Restoration" Plan

June 1865 - December 1865

This Plan is important because it shows that Johnson was willing to follow Lincoln's lenient ideas for reconstructing the South.

1866 Race Riots

1866 - 1867

These were important because they encouraged Congress to create harsher reconstruction policies.

First Civil Rights Act

April 1866

This bill is important because not only is it the first time Congress has overridden a presidential veto, it also shows that the northern government wanted to be very strict and take of advantage of this opportunity while the South didn't have as much of a say.

Freedman's Bureau

April 1866 - May 1866

This bill was presented along with the Civil Rights Act, and Johnson vetoed it as well, but it passe anyway.

Reconstruction Bills

1867 - 1868

These three acts were the Tenure in Office Act, the Military Reconstruction Act, and the Command of the Army Acts, and they are important because they both limit Johnson's power to do anything.

Command of the Army Act

1867 - 1868

This act was important because it limited Johnson's power in government by requiring that all military orders of the President have the approval of the general of the army which was Grant at the time.

Johnson's Impeachment

1867 - May 1868

This was the final straw of the Radical Republicans to get Johnson out of office, they passed the Tenure in Office Act because they knew he would break it, and when he did, he was impeached, but the S.C. ruled that he could stay.

Tenure in Office Act

1867 - 1868

This Act was created so that President Johnson would break it and he could be impeached, showing Congress' distaste for him and his ways.

Fourteenth Amendment

July 9 1868 - July 10 1868

This is important because it gave citizenship to all former slaves in America.

Black Academies

1869 - 1870

The Freedmen's Bureau tallies nearly 3,000 schools, serving over 150,000 students, in the South, showing that blacks can be educated as well.


1869 - 1870

These people were Democrats in the South that wanted to get things back to the way everything was, showing that a lot of people wanted things to go back to previous conditions in the South.

Texas vs. White

April 1869

In its 5-3 Texas v. White decision, the U.S. Supreme Court declares Radical Reconstruction constitutional, stating that secession from the Union is illegal.

Crop-Lien System

1870 - 1880

This system was important because it showed that there were still unfair advantages for people who owned more land, mostly whites.

KKK Acts

1870 - 1871

These acts were important because not only was it the first time the federal government could interfere with individual crimes, but it also led to the decline of the clan.


1870 - 1880

This institution was important because of the ways in which it was so similar to slavery.

Fifteenth Amendment

2-3-1870 - 2-4-1870

This Amendment is important because it gives former slaves the right to vote, something they have never had before.

Treaty of Washington


This was important because it was a way for England to express regret for the Alabama.

Knox v. Lee

May 1871 - June 1871

This case is important because it declared paper money constitutional through the Legal Tender Act.

Indian Ring

1872 - 1873

This scandal was another reason Grant didn't run for his third term, along with Credit Mobilier.

Whiskey Ring

1872 - 1873

This scandal was about a tax on whiskey and was another reason added to the pile of evidence of corruption in the Republican party.

Credit Mobilier

1872 - 1873

This scandal was important because it was one of the reasons that Grant decided to not run for a third term.

Social Darwinism


This is important because it lessened the commitment to Reconstruction.

Panic of 1873

1873 - 1877

This panic was important because it contributed to the creation of paper money based on gold and not greenbacks.

Specie Resumption Act


This was a law in the United States of America which restored the nation to the gold standard through the redemption of previously unbacked United States Notes.

National Greenback Party

1875 - 1897

This party was important because they kept the money issue alive in the government.


1875 - 1876

These people are important because they show the division between the Republicans.

Compromise of 1877


This compromise is important because it resulted in the end of Reconstruction of the South.


Bureau of Indian Affairs

1860 - 1870

This was important because it controlled all the Indians.

Red Cloud

1863 - 1870

Red Cloud is important because he was the leader of the Western Sioux during the beginning of the Indian War conflicts.

Mining Communities

1863 - 1876

These communities were important because they were very ethnically diverse, and contributed to a lot of territories becoming states.


1863 - 1876

These were the smaller less nice communities around the mining ones and showed that not all miners were rich and made a profit.

Sand Creek Massacre

November 1864

This event was important because it was an example of hostilities between other tribes, all over the west.

Transcontinental Railroad

1865 - 1869

This was important because it was the first way to travel from coast to coast.

Fetterman Massacre


This event is important because the 81 whites that died considered this to be a terrible massacre.

Seward's Folly


This was important because it showed how much of a frozen wasteland Alaska.

Midway Islands


This was important because it was another one of Seward's mistake purchases.

George A. Custer

1870 - 1876

Custer was important because he led one of the most famous Indian battles.


1870 - 1880

These were Asian labor workers and are important because they show that not only blacks were exploited for labor, other races were as well.


1870 - 1880

These were farmers that used plows in their crops and were important because they found the prairies to be very fertile.

Barbed Wire


When Joseph Glidden invented barbed wire, there was a large boom in ranching and a decrease in the range.

New States and Territories

1873 - 1876

During this time, many new territories became states because of the established mining communities there.


1874 - 1884

Geronimo was the aggressive leader of the Apache indians and fought on after his preceder was done. He is important because his defeat signified the end of the Indian Resistance in the west.

Crazy Horse

1876 - 1877

Crazy Horse was important because he was the Indian leader at the Battle of Little Big Horn.

Battle of LIttle Big Horn


This event is important because it showed how powerful the Indians could be.

Chief Joseph

1877 - 1878

This man is important because he was the leader of the Nez Perce indians during their chase around the west.

Denis Kearny


He was important because he was an Irish immigrant that started a agitation against Chinese immigrants.

Chinese Exclusion Act


This is important because it gave the government the power to stop Chinese coming into the country.

Range Wars

1883 - 1884

These were skirmishes between the ranchers and herders, and were important because they developed a tension in the west.

Dawes Severalty Act


This was an Act to redistribute Indian land and was important because it broke up many of the reservations.

Indian Ghost Dance


This ritual is important because the confusion around this religion or belief was one of the reasons for the Wounded Knee Massacre.

Battle of Wounded Knee


This battle was important because it was the unofficial end of the Indian wars.


1890 - 1896

This was the practice of taking more than one wife and was the reason Utah could not be admitted to the Union earlier.

Utah Statehood


The government said that Utah could not become a state until they outlawed polygamy.