The Doom of Reconstruction

9780823227099: Hardback
Release Date: 15th February 2007

9780823227105: Paperback
Release Date: 3rd May 2010

Dimensions: 152.4 x 228.6

Number of Pages: 306

Series Reconstructing America

Fordham University Press

The Doom of Reconstruction

The Liberal Republicans in the Civil War Era

Hardback / £70.00
Paperback / £27.99

In the Election of 1872 the conflict between President U. S. Grant and Horace Greeley has been typically understood as a battle for the soul of the ruling Republican Party. In this innovative study, Andrew Slap argues
forcefully that the campaign was more than a narrow struggle between Party elites and a class-based radical reform movement. The election, he demonstrates, had broad consequences: in their opposition to widespread Federal corruption, Greeley Republicans unintentionally doomed Reconstruction of any kind, even as they lost the election.

Based on close readings of newspapers, party documents, and other primary sources, Slap confronts one of the major questions in American political history: How, and why, did Reconstruction come to an end? His focus on the unintended consequences of Liberal Republican politics is a provocative contribution to this important debate.

Andrew L. Slap is Associate Professor of History at East Tennessee State University. He is the author of The Doom of Reconstruction: The Liberal Republicans in the Civil War Era (Fordham University Press, 2006).and editor of Reconstructing Appalachia: The Civil War’s
Aftermath (University Press of Kentucky, 2010). His current project on African American communities around Memphis during the Civil War era is under contract with Cambridge University Press.

Slap offers an engaging and well-researched narrative that differentiates between the prolonged evolution, development, and political machinations of the liberary republican movement and the Liberal Republican Party.


. . . A fine and necessary study.

—The Journal of Southern History

For a nuanced treatment of how liberal Republicans' beliefs evolved and drew on classical republicanism, and a clear narrative of the tangled intrigues in the Cincinnati convention, [Slap] can't be bettered.

—Civil War History

Slap joins a growing company of historians who take seriously the ideas and beliefs espoused by political actors.

—American Historical Review

Slap's study focuses on a small, elite political group using mainly manuscripts and newspapers.

—Ohio History

. . . An important addition to literature on Reconstruction.