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Edward L. Ayers

Chapter 2 holds that Reconstruction is a generally misunderstood event. To better understand Reconstruction, Edward L. Ayers traces the political roots and motivations driving Reconstruction beginning with the 1864 presidential election through to 1870 and the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment. Ayers explores how opposition from northern Democrats and white Southerners not only enabled but pushed Reconstruction even further than Republicans intended.