Texas after the Civil War: The Struggle of Reconstruction (Texas A&M Southwestern Studies)

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9781585443628: Texas after the Civil War: The Struggle of Reconstruction (Texas A&M Southwestern Studies)

As the Civil War ended, the South and especially Texas, which had escaped the military ravages of the war stood poised on the brink of a new social, economic, and political order. Congressional Reconstruction, the Freedmen’s Bureau, the U.S. Army, and a Republican state administration all presaged change. Nonetheless, Texas in 1874 more closely resembled the Texas of 1861 than anyone might have predicted at war’s end. Reconstruction had remade little.

In Texas after the Civil War, Carl H. Moneyhon reconsiders the reasons Reconstruction failed to live up to its promise. He shows that the period was not one of corruption and irresponsible government, as earlier studies had argued; nor was the Republican regime of Edmund J. Davis devoid of accomplishments. Rather, the fact that the Civil War had shaken but not destroyed the antebellum community made the resistance to changes in government and society even greater than elsewhere in the South. Moneyhon vividly examines the character of violence in the state, as well as the social and economic forces that shaped the response to Reconstruction.

Clearly and engagingly written, masterful in its survey of the last fifty years of research on the era, this book will stand as the definitive synthesis and interpretation of Reconstruction in Texas for years to come.

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About the Author:

CARL H. MONEYHON, a professor of history at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, is a specialist on the Civil War and Reconstruction. Author of Republicanism in Reconstruction Texas, he holds a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago and is a Fellow of the Texas State Historical Association.

Review:

“A pioneer work . . . an excellent synthesis of ‘Political Reconstruction in Texas’ and Reconstruction’s failure as told from the revisionist point-of-view . . . It will be the new ground-breaker on the subject, the place to start for anyone doing serious work on Reconstruction in Texas. Moneyhon has done a great service for Texas historians and Southern historians by distilling much of the new revisionists’ works on the subject.”--James Smallwood, Professor Emeritus, Oklahoma State University (James Smallwood, Professor Emeritus, Oklahoma State University)

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