African Americans: Historical Journey from 1865 to the Present HIS: 204: American History Since 1865
Professor Lisa Burgin
July 14, 2014
The African American journey has been one of trials and tribulations which they suffered greatly to achieve freedom and success. The battle has led the citizens of this nation to have witnessed the first African American President of the United States. The journey that has brought African Americans to the present situation has seen intermittent successes and numerous setbacks. Perseverance from many generations has brought about a gradual but progressive change. The journey begun in a state of slavery, through the act of slavery racism was seen in its rarest forms. The long journey emerged from African Americans being sold to white traders and transported across the Atlantic Ocean. Slaves were auctioned off and sold to the highest bidders. African Americans were considered personal property of the white man and viewed as economic commodity. Their strength and endurance was formed as a result of working in the fields and kitchens from sunrise to sunset. The slaves lived off of the bare necessities in life. This act of slavery existed for decades and helped to shape the course of American history. From slavery to the March on Washington and many other events, African Americans have fought for their rights in United States, and have achieved their identity through many historical movements. The 13th Amendment to the US Constitution officially abolished slavery and freed the slaves to make a life for themselves as the Reconstruction Period. During the Reconstruction Era (1867) African Americans still suffered hardships under the leadership of Andrew Johnson who became president after Lincoln had got assassinated in 1865. Andrew Johnson had no intention of helping the African Americans he wanted to punish the slaveholders in the South. Andrew Jackson opposed giving African Americans the freedom to vote or equal rights. 1870 the 15th Amendment was ratified and became a law that specified African American men had the right to vote. Voting was part of African Americans receiving civil liberties. The Civil Rights Movement and racial oppression were very significant moments in the American history. Exploitation was seen based on the color of one’s skin. Oppression was the way to keep the African American’s voice unheard. The dominant race manipulated America and shaped it according to the value of one race in society. Gaining equality was the essence of the struggle for African Americans in which white society pushed to prohibit African Americans from gaining any form of equality. Americans were uninformed and unaware of how corrupt the government officials were. During the historical journey of the African Americans the government failed to have all humans’ best interest in mind. The African American Journey
Devastation of trials and tribulations were prevalent among the African Americans before 1865. The Civil War put a new twist on how society tuned into a racist world. Racism was very powerful and demanding during this period in life. Racism still prevails in the present tense only in more subtle ways. Before 1865 issues with slavery depicted lynching, segregation, low wages for job performances and derogatory defamation of character within a race due to skin pigmentation. Slavery and degradation never killed the desire of freedom and a promising future for African Americans. This was one of the foremost occurrences of hatred and dehumanizing of man because of the color of their skin. This exemplified the state of condition the African Americans were placed and recognized that another race was superior or had power over another race. African Americans were considered powerless over their own lives. The Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment were passed by a strong leader named Abraham Lincoln,...
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