Yesterday, Wednesday the 23rd, we learned about the Radical Republicans, the political career (after his beating) of Charles Sumner, and the military career of Ulysses S. Grant. We learned about how the Radical Republicans had a monopoly of sorts over the South, due to the fact that Congress controlled their re-admission into the states, while the Radical Republicans controlled Congress. We also learned about Charles Sumner's role as a Radical Republican and his goal of metaphorically beating the South with a cane. We learned about these through taking notes off of the board. Prior to that, we were assigned to a certain document and formed groups of two to analyze the documents. The document that I received was Letter to John Bright, which described how Charles Sumner thought that the slaves should be integrated into society. After that, We switched partners and matched up with someone with a different document, titled, Grant Takes Command, and had to analyze this document, which talked about Grant's role in the Civil War and the status of the North and South.
Today, Thursday the 24th, we discussed the homework last night, covering the second inaugural address of Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis's African Church Speech. We then moved on and began to discuss the role of slavery in starting the Civil War, a topic that was sparked by Lincoln's inauguration. To get the different perspectives of modern day people on the issue, we listened to a podcast, in which an African American former governor spoke, as well as a member of The Sons of The Confederacy. They differed greatly on the topic, as one believed that slavery was the sole cause of the war, and the other believed that it was one of many factors contributing to the start of the war. We then discussed these factors and how the all came back to the topic of slavery, showing that slavery was, in fact, the cause of the Civil War.