Compromise of 1877 Facts

Compromise of 1877 Facts
In the years following the American Civil War, the United States Congress was dominated by the Republican Party and the president from 1869 to 1877 was Republican Ulysses S. Grant. Although Grant favored a more moderate peace with the former Confederate states, a wing of the Republican Party known as the Radical Republicans gained control of the government and instituted a policy known as Reconstruction. During Reconstruction, former male slaves were given the right to vote throughout the south and conversely many former Confederates were disenfranchised, which led to a large number of black men holding office for the first time in American history. Throughout Grant's two terms as president angry whites formed vigilante groups, such as the Ku Klux Klan, and flocked to the Democrat Party, slowly eroding the quickly gained political power of blacks and Republicans in the south. The presidential election of 1876 pitted Republican Rutherford B. Hayes against Democrat Samuel J. Tidlen and showed just how divided the country was with the popular and electoral vote almost evenly split. The compromise came when the electors in the states of Florida, Louisiana, South Carolina, and one in Oregon agreed to give their votes to Hayes in return for him and the Republicans essentially ending Reconstruction. The Democrat controlled House of Representatives agreed to go along with the scheme and inaugurate Hayes.
Interesting Compromise of 1877 Facts:
The Compromise was unwritten and unbinding.
Although Reconstruction was basically over in much of the south, federal troops remained in South Carolina, Florida, and Louisiana: one of the major points of the Compromise called for the withdrawal of troops from those states.
Tilden had won 184 electoral votes, one vote shy of victory, when disputes over the results in South Carolina, Louisiana, Florida, and Oregon began.
Tilden won 50.9% of the popular vote versus 47.9% for Hayes.
The Congress created the Electoral Commission on January 29, 1876 to settle the election: five members were from the Democrat majority House, five from the Republican majority Senate, and five members of the Supreme Court.
The Electoral Commission voted to give all the disputed electoral votes to Hayes, giving him the presidency by one vote - 185-184.
Hayes appointed Democrat David Key to his cabinet as Postmaster General as part of the Compromise.
A Texas to California railroad was constructed as part of the Compromise.
Legislation to industrialize the south and non-interference by the federal government in the various southern states' racial laws were also parts of the Compromise.
The railroad was never completed and the south was not industrialized, at least compared to the northeast and Midwest, but segregation, restrictive voting laws, and Jim Crow laws in the south were tolerated by the federal government for about eighty years.
Since Compromise was never put into writing, there is not definitive proof it happened with some historians today believing it never did.
C. Vann Woodward was the first modern historian to argue that the Compromise of 1877 took place in his 1951 book Reunion and Reaction.


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