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A Yankee's Argument of Post-Civil War Reconstruction

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Essay title: A Yankee's Argument of Post-Civil War Reconstruction

A Yankee's Argument of post-Civil War Reconstruction

After the Civil War was over, the South was in, for the most part, in ruins. Events during the war that made this happen were for example, General Sherman’s troops destroyed 33% of Atlanta by burning trees, houses, and anything else that got in their way. Around 10% of all the white males in the south died in the war. About 4 million slaves were set free. The south had damage that was so great, it amounted to about 4 billion dollars in property loss alone. Business in South Carolina was just about completely destroyed, as well as for most business in the south. And also, the currency that was used in the southern states now had no value whatsoever. The biggest, and longest lasting scars that came out of the civil war in the south were Social, Economic, and Physical.

The most obvious and apparent thing that could be noticed in the aftermath was the physical environment in the south. It truly took a beating, and is a reminder that war always comes with many consequences to the land. Bridges and ferries that where vital to trade and transport were now burned to the ground leaving only ash. Travel in the south then became rather difficult because of having to now manage to get across rivers that were deep with swiftly running water. Trees and farms laid in ruins, and really altered the landscape into a desert like atmosphere in many places. Truly worthy of the names “war zone/battle field”. But even though things sounded really bad, many places and industry were able to be rebuilt. The civil war didn’t make the south absolutely uninhabitable, but rather just a huge disaster that people could rebuild upon.

The economics of the south really was one of the hardest hit areas. Before the war (and before 1860), the south had the strongest banking system. The five cotton states of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana outranked all the other regions of the United States in all of the important economic areas such as invested capital, notes (dollar bills if you will), and the average level of deposits per bank. However, because of the south leaving the union, having to support itself, and many other factors, by about 1865 banking came almost to a complete halt. The Bank of Charleston in South Carolina for example, which was the second largest

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