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reconstruction and civil war era

The American Civil War, also known as the War Between the States, was a civil war fought from 1861 to 1865 in the United States of America after seven Southern slave states declared their secession and formed the Confederate States of America (the "Confederacy" or the "South"). The states that remained in the Union were known as the "Union" or the "North". The war had its origin in the fractious issue of slavery, especially the extension of slavery into the western territories. Foreign powers did not intervene. After four years of bloody combat that left over 600,000 soldiers dead and destroyed much of the South's infrastructure, the Confederacy collapsed, slavery was abolished, and the difficult Reconstruction process of restoring national unity and guaranteeing rights to the freed slaves began.
During the American Civil War, Lincoln’s actions broadened the power of the Executive Branch. An example of this is the Emancipation Proclamation. The Emancipation Proclamation was a presidential proclamation issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863, as a war measure during the American Civil War, directed to all areas in rebellion and all segments of the Executive branch (including the Army and Navy) of the United States. It proclaimed the freedom of slaves in the ten states that were still in rebellion, thus applying to 3.1 million of the 4 million slaves in the U.S. at the time. The Proclamation was based on the president's constitutional authority as commander in chief of the armed forces; it was not a law passed by Congress. The Proclamation also ordered that "suitable" persons among those freed could be enrolled into the paid service of United States' forces, and ordered the Union Army (and all segments of the Executive branch) to "recognize and maintain the freedom of" the ex-slaves. The Proclamation did not compensate the owners, did not itself outlaw slavery, and did not make the ex-slaves (called freedmen) citizens. It made the eradication of slavery an explicit war goal, in addition to the goal of reuniting the Union. Another example Ex parte Merryman. Ex parte Merryman, is a well-known U.S. federal court case which arose out of the American Civil War. It was a test of the authority of the President to suspend "the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus" under the Constitution's Suspension Clause. Chief Justice Roger Taney, sitting as a federal circuit court judge, ruled that the authority to suspend habeas corpus lay with Congress, not the president. President Lincoln ignored the ruling, as did the Army under Lincoln's orders. The case was rendered moot by Lincoln's subsequent order in February 1862 to release almost everyone held as a political prisoner. Finally, President Lincoln called outstate militia increased the size of the navy, ordered, a naval blockade of the south and the approved funds for military expenses while Congress was not in session congress later gave its approval of these actions.
The term Reconstruction Era has two senses: the first covers the complete history of the entire country from 1865 to 1877 following the Civil War; the second sense focuses on the transformation of the Southern United States from 1863 to 1877, as directed by Congress, with the reconstruction of state and society. During the Reconstruction, Radical Republican and southerners states’ actions broadened the power of the LegislativeBranch. One example is the Civil Rights Act. The Civil Rights Act of 1866, 14 Stat. 27-30, enacted April 9, 1866, is a United States federal law that was mainly intended to protect the civil rights of African-Americans, in the wake of the American Civil War. This legislation was enacted by Congress in 1865 but vetoed by President Andrew Johnson. In April 1866 Congress again passed the bill. Although Johnson again vetoed it, a two-thirds majority in each house overcame the veto and the bill ostensibly became law. Another example is the 14th Amendment. The Fourteenth Amendment (Amendment XIV) to the United States Constitution was adopted on July 9, 1868, as one of the Reconstruction Amendments. The amendment addresses citizenship rights and equal protection of the laws, and was proposed in response to issues related to former slaves following the American Civil War. The amendment was bitterly contested, particularly by Southern states, which were forced to ratify it in order for them to regain representation in the Congress. During the Era of Reconstruction the Republicans-controlled Congress included: the division of the south into five military districts controlled by the us army while new state constitutions and governments were being set up, the requirement of the new state g overnments to grant african the right to vote and the requirement of southern states to ratify the 14th amendment. In addition to addressing several fundamental civil rights issues, the amendment prohibited many former Confederate government officials from holding office.

During various times in the United States history, one branch of the federal government has become dominant over the other. This was evident during the American civil war (1861-1865) and the Era of Reconstruction (1865-1877)

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