Laws passed during Reconstruction, especially the fourteenth and fifteenth Amendments, significantly expanded the scope of American citizenship and extended political rights to millions of Black Americans. In 1868, South Carolina had the first state legislature with a Black majority. This image of 63 of the legislature’s members was distributed throughout South Carolina by opponents of Radical Reconstruction.1
1Julie L. Mellby, "Radical Members of the South Carolina Legislature," Graphic Arts (blog), entry posted May 19, 2011, accessed October 9, 2014.
This is a photo montage created in 1876 depicting the first South Carolina legislature after the 1867 Reconstruction acts.
This teaching idea provides an overview of the ERA and a look at the history behind the struggle to ratify the amendment that would formally guarantee women equal rights to men under the US Constitution.