Black Americans after Civil War

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 1993 |

Pages: 4|

10 min read

Published: Apr 29, 2022

Words: 1993|Pages: 4|10 min read

Published: Apr 29, 2022

America has a past history of slavery, racism towards African Americans. African Americans have been part of America since its early days as a nation. Segregation came after slavery was abolished in America. Public services were segregated for black and white people. Schools were no exception, schools were segregated based on race. Schools for whites and blacks were different, different treatment was given to black and white students. School quality in general was different for each race. The Fourteenth Amendment was ratified to provide equal protection, equal treatment for all citizens of the United States. De Jure segregation in schools violated The Fourteenth Amendment. De Facto segregation is something that still persists in today’s America.

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Africans were brought to America by Europeans to work on the fields. They performed agricultural jobs. Africans were kept as slaves for many decades. “Slavery in America started in 1619, when a Dutch ship brought 20 African slaves ashore in the British colony of Jamestown, Virginia” ( Children born in America of African descent were enslaved as well. Slaves didn’t have any rights, they were considered property by their owners. Slaves were treated very poorly. The usage of slaves helped the economy of the United States by creating higher output of products. “African slaves helped build the new nation into an economic powerhouse through the production of lucrative crops such as tobacco and cotton” ( Even though slaves were helping the newly nation grow economically, they were still seen as an inferior race. The slaves were an economic boost to the United States. They worked hard increasing profits for their owners and no pay was given to them in return. The American Civil War was fought to end slavery in the South which was a success. The North won and slavery was abolished, slaves were freed. After the Civil War, the Fourteenth was ratified to grant citizenship to all the former slaves. It provided equal protection for all citizens of the United States, including former slaves. “Former slaves received the rights of citizenship and the equal protection of the Constitution in the 14th Amendment” (

Segregation came after The Civil War in America. African Americans wanted to be part of a society that would treat them with respect, value them as humans. It was a different outcome for what they hoped for, African Americans were segregated from public services. They were not allowed to share anything with the white society. They were still treated as an inferior race, not as equal citizens. Some white people tried different methods to keep people of color from entering their society.

After the Civil War, millions of formerly enslaved African Americans hoped to join the larger society as full and equal citizens. Although some white Americans welcomed them, others used people’s ignorance, racism, and self-interest to sustain and spread racial divisions. By 1900, new laws and old customs in the North and the South had created a segregated society that condemned Americans of color to second-class citizenship (Smithsonian National Museum of American History Behring Center).

It was hard for African Americans to be part of an equal society when they were denied the access to public services. There were laws that enforced segregation. Whites believed that they were superior to blacks, they believed that they were a better race which led them to not want to share their everyday life with African Americans.

School segregation took part during the segregation period in America. Schools were segregated for white and black students. Schools were different for both group of students. White students had better facilities, meanwhile schools for African Americans were underfunded. Laws were placed to segregate schools for African American and white students, they were supposed to be separate but equal. “The Supreme Court ruled in Plessy vs. Ferguson in 1896 that separate but equal was constitutional as long as it was equal” (Tucker, Marc). According to the Supreme Court there was no issue in segregating schools as long as equal treatment was given to each race.

Many whites did not want blacks to become educated, fearing they would challenge white supremacy and not be content with jobs working in the fields or in domestic service. Black schools therefore received far less financial support than did white schools. Black schools had fewer books, worse buildings, and less well paid teachers. Ramshackle, segregated schools marked black Virginians with a stigma of inferiority and the status of second-class citizenship that they would have to endure throughout their lives (Virginia Museum of History & Culture).

The “separate but equal” ruling by the Supreme Court was not implemented in schools for African Americans. African American students were not treated as equal as white students. Whites wanted to keep African Americans uneducated because of the fear of them becoming competitive. If African Americans became competitive, then whites were at risk of losing their ruling powers. African American schools were controlled by whites since they were the ones governing. Since they were in control of school funding, they invested less on schools for blacks compared to what they invested on schools for whites. African Americans had less tools to work with to receive a good education. These forms of treatment had an impact on their lives, it made them feel less valued than whites. Kids were psychological damaged by these treatments at school. It made them believe that they were not as good as white kids. It was hard more black kids looking at themselves inferior. Their dreams were ruined, their goals were nonexistent if they were part of a society in which they were not good enough to compete, all because of their skin color.

School segregation violated the Fourteenth Amendment. The Fourteenth Amendment section 1 states the following,

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws (

According to the Fourteenth Amendment, all citizens of the United States are equal. The laws should protect every citizen equally. Same treatment should be given to everyone. No government can infringe upon someone’s civil rights without a fair judgement. School segregation did not follow the Fourteenth Amendment because all citizens are equal, no matter their race and should have the same rights. Each citizen should be offered the same life quality. Segregation separated students based on their race. African Americans students were given worse schools than whites. School quality in general was bad for black students compared to white students. School segregation clearly violated the Fourteenth Amendment, it did not follow its statements.

Brown v. Board of Education ruled that racial segregation of children in public schools was unconstitutional. This court case found that “separate but equal” education was not equal at all. In the decision, issued on May 17, 1954, the court ruling ruled that school segregation in fact did violate the 14th Amendment, segregating schools is not equal treatment( School segregation was unequal treatment which led to unequal protection from the laws of the Fourteenth Amendment. The focus of the Fourteenth Amendment was to establish equality for everyone, not just treat a single race better. If wasn’t possible to enforce equality on all students if they were being separated based on their skin color. The constitution of the United States can not be constitutional if civil rights are not been applied to everyone as they are supposed to.

Although De Jure segregation in schools is not in effect in today’s America. There is De Facto segregation which is happening now in American schools. Hispanic, African American and white children are divided by economic standards. Mostly white children schools have better qualities than schools attended by minorities. De Jure segregation is not active anymore but white kids still have it better at school. Hispanics and African Americans are not being forced by law to attend low quality schools but some of them don’t have a choice. The past racism imposed by whites has its effect today still. When racism was legal in the United States, whites were given higher loans/credit to buy better things. They were able to buy good properties and to go to school, receive a good education. Meanwhile minorities were given much less help to buy property. They were in a way forced to live in bad places. Minorities didn’t have enough resources to receive a higher education. Since whites had better neighborhoods, businesses grew higher in those towns. Their economy got better, more money came in. Minority towns were poor, businesses were not attracted, money didn’t come in, they had bad economies (In Class Videos).

Today’s schools are segregated based on economical status. Those lower loans given to minorities back then are still affecting them in today’s modern day. Those low income towns are still the way they were compared to the towns of white people. Minorities have obstacles today getting a good education or getting a higher paying job. It is easier for white people to go to college because they are better off economically, the wealth has been passed on through the years. In today’s America, whites get higher loans/more help to buy property. Minorities are still given less help than whites (In Class Videos).

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Slavery was a time period in America in which Africans and African Americans were servants for the whites. They worked against their will, slaves were treated as objects rather than as humans. After slavery was abolished in America, African Americans faced many challenges that impacted their lives very harshly. Racial segregation was a framework gotten from the white Americans to keep African Americans in a subordinate status by denying them parallel access to open offices and guaranteeing that blacks lived separated from whites. African Americans were treated as second class citizens. They were separated from the whites, they used different services. Whites got the better services. School segregation took part during the segregation period in America. Schools were segregated for whites and blacks. It was the same as the rest of the services offered to the African Americans, whites got the better schools. They had more and better supplies compared to African Americans. De Facto segregation in schools today is connected to the American past. I think that school segregation goes back to the slavery days. Whites didn’t want anything to do with blacks back then. It was the same thing during school segregation. Whites didn’t want to share their lifestyle with blacks. White mentally was the same throughout these time periods, they felt superior. It could have been simple ignorance passed on through the years. I don’t think school segregation was right but I do think that it was helpful in a certain way. Black kids were not oppressed at school by white kids, black kids understood each other, their lives were relatable. Even though it was helpful for black kids, they could not unite with whites and form a single society if they were segregated. These events were cruel in American history, they impacted many lives in negative ways. These events are examples of how not to treat people. People can look different to one another but that’s not a right for others to feel superior. America has to work harder to get rid of De Facto segregation. Mixing schools give students the chance to share their ideas, cultures with each other. Some minority kids don’t have the opportunity to attend college. Generations will follow the same path if something is not done with De Facto segregation in schools. White kids are able to attend college, get a degree and get a good job because their families are able to support them. Minorities need help to get themselves on their feet for a change in future generations.  

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Black Americans After Civil War. (2022, April 29). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 25, 2024, from
“Black Americans After Civil War.” GradesFixer, 29 Apr. 2022,
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