SWOT Analysis of the End of Military Reconstruction

Lesson Author
Required Time Frame
One class period
Grade Level(s)
Lesson Abstract
Students will use the SWOT method (Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) to synthesize knowledge about the end of Reconstruction.
Rationale (why are you doing this?)

My students struggle to understand the various costs and benefits of Military Reconstruction, and the results of its removal in the Compromise of 1877. This method will allow them to look at multiple perspectives, who gained, and who lost.

Lesson Objectives - the student will

Consider the political and social consequences of the end of Military Reconstruction

District, state, or national performance and knowledge standards/goals/skills met

Missouri’s 6-12 Social Studies MLS
Government Systems and Principles: Theme 1 - C - Predict the consequences which can occur when institutions fail to meet the needs of individuals and groups.
Government Systems and Principles: Theme 5 - D - Analyze the motivations for and results of changing concepts of the federal government in post-Civil War America.

Secondary materials (book, article, video documentary, etc.) needed

Textbook or prior lessons related to Military Reconstruction and the Compromise of 1877.

Alternative digital articles:
Summary (particulary 2nd half):

Primary sources needed (document, photograph, artifact, diary or letter, audio or visual recording, etc.) needed
Number of Black Southern Legislators, 1868-1900 and 1960-1992
Number of Black Southern Legislators, 1868-1900 and 1960-1992

Electoral college map of 1876

1876 Election
1876 Election

Embed from Getty Images

Fully describe the activity or assignment in detail. What will both the teacher and the students do?

Students will be given several visuals regarding legislation and voting before and after the Election of 1876 and will complete a SWOT graphic organizer using their prior knowledge, prediction skills, and graph reading abilities. Student handouts are included with links. Then students will summarize the social and political impacts of the Compromise that gave Hayes the presidency

Assessment: fully explain the assessment method in detail or create and attach a scoring guide


The Consequences of Ending Military Reconstruction SWOT

Directions: Consider the perspectives of Southerners regarding the Compromise of 1877.


Southern African-Americans:










Southern Democrats: