The period from the end of the Civil War until 1877 was known as Reconstruction. As the name suggests, it was the country's attempt to reconstruct and, perhaps, transform the South. The hope was to not only stitch the country back together again, but provide the freedmen a step up, to integrate the formerly enslaved population back into society. Tensions between Congress and the President led to an uneven and imperfect process. The Army was the only institution that could provide stability, but never had enough men to stamp out the violence and change the attitudes prevalent in the South. By 1877, the north had lost interest and the south put into place a system of control that would not be overturned for a century.
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