This volume traces the principal developments during the Era of Reconstruction in America. Beginning with wartime efforts to restore the Southern States, it illustrates the difficulties facing the nation during the postwar period. The author stresses the baneful effects of the controversy between Andrew Johnson, a President essentially unsympathetic to the aspirations of the blacks, and the increasingly radical Congress. The temporary triumph of radical Reconstruction was not sweeping enough to prevent the gradual erosion by the Republican influence in the South under Grant and Hayes - the efforts to uplift the freedmen were beset by innumerable obstacles, how the radicals, though finally overcome, still succeeded in embedding some of their ideas in the three postwar amendments to the Constitution - these are some of the subjects highlighted. With the aid of twenty-six documents, Professor Trefousse emphasizes the problem of integrating the Negro into American society and he shows that this principle was one of the main issues of the Reconstruction struggle. --from back cover.