Reconstruction Era | The Panic | 5

Reconstruction Era | The Panic | 5

On Easter Sunday, 1873, an armed white mob battled a Black militia over control of a courthouse in a rural Louisiana parish. In the end, as many as 150 Black citizens were massacred. It was one the deadliest incidents of racial violence during the Reconstruction era.

As anti-Black violence ravaged the South, President Ulysses S. Grant entered his second term. Soon, the North’s commitment to defending Southern Black political rights faltered when disaster struck Wall Street, triggering bank failures across America. Tens of thousands of freedpeople saw their meager savings disappear, as their political rights came under threat from armed Southern Democrats determined to reclaim power once and for all.

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