Report on the Condition of the South

Carl Schurz
on the Condition of the South, by
Carl Schurz

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Title: Report on the Condition of the South
Author: Carl Schurz
Release Date: September, 2005 [EBook #8872] [Yes, we are more than

one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first posted on August 18,
Edition: 10
Language: English
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Carl Schurz
First published 1865

39TH CONGRESS, SENATE. Ex. Doc. 1st Session. No. 2.
In compliance with a resolution of the Senate of the 12th instant,
information in relation to the States of the Union lately in rebellion,
accompanied by a report of Carl Schurz on the States of South
Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana; also a report
of Lieutenant General Grant, on the same subject.
DECEMBER 19, 1865.--Read and ordered to be printed, with the
reports of Carl Schurz and Lieutenant General Grant.

To the Senate of the United States:
In reply to the resolution adopted by the Senate on the 12th instant, I
have the honor to state, that the rebellion waged by a portion of the
people against the properly constituted authorities of the government of
the United States has been suppressed; that the United States are in
possession of every State in which the insurrection existed; and that, as
far as could be done, the courts of the United States have been restored,
post offices re-established, and steps taken to put into effective
operation the revenue laws of the country.
As the result of the measures instituted by the Executive, with the view
of inducing a resumption of the functions of the States comprehended
in the inquiry of the Senate, the people in North Carolina, South
Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, and
Tennessee, have reorganized their respective State governments, and
"are yielding obedience to the laws and government of the United
States," with more willingness and greater promptitude than, under the
circumstances, could reasonably have been anticipated. The proposed
amendment to the Constitution, providing for the abolition of slavery
forever within the limits of the country, has been ratified by each one of
those States, with the exception of Mississippi, from which no official
information has yet been received; and in nearly all of them measures
have been adopted or are now pending to confer upon freedmen rights
and privileges which are essential to their comfort, protection, and
security. In Florida and Texas the people are making commendable
progress in restoring their State governments, and no doubt is
entertained that they will at an early period be in a condition to resume
all of their practical relations with the federal government.
In "that portion of the Union lately in rebellion" the aspect of affairs is
more promising than, in view of all the circumstances, could well have
been expected. The people throughout the entire south evince a
laudable desire to renew their allegiance to the government, and to
repair the devastations of war by a prompt and cheerful return to
peaceful pursuits. An abiding faith is entertained that their actions will
conform to their professions, and that, in acknowledging the supremacy

of the Constitution and the laws of the United States, their loyalty will
be unreservedly given to the government, whose leniency they cannot
fail to appreciate, and whose fostering care will soon restore them to a
condition of prosperity. It is true, that in some of the States the
demoralizing effects of war are to be seen in occasional disorders, but
these are local in character, not frequent in occurrence, and are rapidly
disappearing as the authority of civil law is extended and sustained.
Perplexing questions were naturally to be expected from the great and
sudden change in the relations between the
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