The Reconstruction of Georgia

The Reconstruction of Georgia

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The Reconstruction of Georgia

The Reconstruction of Georgia

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Excerpt

The question, what political disposition should be made of the Confederate States after the destruction of their military power, began to be prominent in public discussion in December, 1863. It was then that President Lincoln announced his policy upon the subject, which was to restore each state to its former position in the Union as soon as one-tenth of its population had taken the oath of allegiance prescribed in his amnesty proclamation and had organized a state government pledged to abolish slavery. This policy Lincoln applied to those states which were subdued by the federal forces during his administration, viz., Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana. When the remaining states of the Confederacy surrendered in 1865, President Johnson applied the same policy, with some modifications, to each of them (except Virginia, where he simply recognized the Pierpont government).

Before this policy was put into operation, however, an effort was made by some of the leaders of the Confederacy to secure the restoration of those states to the Union without the reconstruction and the pledge required by the President. After the surrender of Lee's army (April 9, 1865), General J. E. Johnston, acting under the authority of Jefferson Davis and with the advice of Breckenridge, the Confederate Secretary of War, and Reagan, the Confederate Postmaster General, proposed to General Sherman the surrender of all the Confederate armies then in existence on certain condi-

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