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Reconstruction and an Expanding America (Reconstruction-1897)

What changes did Americans see in people, culture and politics?

Topic 1: Freedmen's Bureau and Education

This inquiry kit features Library of Congress sources relating to education for freed slaves after the Civil War.

stereoscopic photo of children and teachers outside of a schoolhouse


Topic 2: Westward Expansion and the Homestead Act

This inquiry kit features Library of Congress sources relating to the Homestead Act and Westward Expansion.

front page of 'The Independent' newspaper from 1863


Topic 3: Government and Public Responses to Immigration

This inquiry kit features Library of Congress sources relating to immigration issues at the end of the 19th century.

color cartoon showing Uncle Sam looking over a crowd of immigrants


Topic 4: “Chicago's Wild Mobs:” Industrialization and Anarchy

This inquiry kit features Library of Congress sources focusing on the Haymarket Riot in Chicago as factory workers protested poor working conditions.

black typeset on white paper calling for a meeting


Topic 5: Silver and Gold: The 1896 Election

This inquiry kit features Library of Congress sources relating to the election contest between William McKinley and William Jennings Bryan.

color cartoon showing a caricature of William Jennings Bryan entering a tunnel to the White House while pulling an overloaded donkey


Topic 6: The Oyster Wars

This inquiry kit features Library of Congress sources that relate to the Oyster Wars on the Chesapeake Bay.

black and white drawing of a policeman in the foreground tossing a rope to the boat of an oyster dredger