Black History Month 2024

1869 1870 1871

17 Andrew Johnson | 18 Ulysses S. Grant | 19 Rutherford B. Hayes

Black Codes Reconstruction Redemption

February 3, 1870
15th Amendment Ratified

Washington, D. C. - The Fifteenth Amendment was added to the United States Constitution. It had the intent to protect voting rights for Black Americans. It was not effective until the Voting Rights Act of 1964, almost 100 years later.

The full text...

Fifteenth Amendment

Section 1

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude–

Section 2

The Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.


May 31, 1870
First Enforcement Act

Washington, D. C. - The Civil Rights Act of 1870 was the first of the enforcement acts passed. It was to protect the rights of those formerly enslaved, to vote.

This was the first law that enforced the Fifteenth Amendment. It was an attempt to stop the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), the Knights of the Camellia, and other white supremacist groups that attacked Black Americans.


June 23, 1870
Justice Department Signed Into Law

Washington, D. C. - President Ulysses Grant signed the Act to Establish the Department of Justice. It was formed to enforce the laws of the post-Slavery War era. These included the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments. It was also a way to stop the Ku Klux Klan (KKK).