The social changes and human and economic costs of the Civil War led to profound legal and constitutional developments after it ended, not least of which were the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and the many laws devised to protect the civil rights of newly freed African Americans. These amendments and laws worked for a while, but they were ineffective or ineffectively enforced for more than a century.
In Ending the Civil War and the Consequences for Congress, contributors explore how the end of the war both continued the trauma of the conflict and enhanced the potential for the new birth of freedom that Lincoln promised in the Gettysburg Address. Collectively, they bring their multidisciplinary expertise to bear on the legal, economic, social, and political aspects of the aftermath of the war and Reconstruction era. The book concludes with the reminder of how the meaning of the war has changed over time. The Civil War is no longer the “felt” history it once was, Clay Risen reminds us, and despite the work of many fine scholars it remains contested.
Contributors: Jenny Bourne, Carole Emberton, Paul Finkelman, Lorien Foote, William E. Nelson, Clay Risen, Anne Sarah Rubin, and Peter Wallenstein
About the Author
Paul Finkelman is an expert on constitutional history, the law of slavery, and the American Civil War. He coedits the Ohio University Press series New Approaches to Midwestern Studies and is the president of Gratz College.
Donald R. Kennon is the former chief historian and vice president of the United States Capitol Historical Society. He is editor of the Ohio University Press series Perspectives on the History of Congress, 1789–1801.
Table of Contents
Introduction Paul Finkelman 1
"A Hungry Belly and Freedom": Rations, Refugees, and Reconstruction at the End of the Civil War Carole Emberton 11
Federal Prisoners of War and the Long Recovery Lorien Foote 24
When Johnny Came Marching Home, What Did He Find? A Look at the Postbellum U.S. Economy Jenny Bourne 39
An Infamous Disregard? Sherman's March and the Laws of War Anne Sarah Rubin 54
The Fourteenth Amendment and the Joint Committee on Reconstruction Paul Finkelman 74
Historicizing the Politics of Reconstruction: Congress and the Fourteenth Amendment, Section 2 Peter Wallenstein 103
Sectionalism, the Fourteenth Amendment, and the End of Popular Constitutionalism William E. Nelson 135
The Civil War at 100, the Civil War at 150: Commemoration, Identity, and the Changing Shape of National Memory Clay Risen 149