After looking at the assignment below, read this state law passed in Mississippi in 1865 (Links to an external site.). It is called a “Black Code” because much of it was brought over from before the Civil War… when it was called a “Slave Code.” Your purpose in this extra credit assignment is to consider what the end of slavery meant in a national context (with the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments), as well as in the context of the state of Mississippi.
For a potential five points of extra credit, address the following four tasks:
Find the “golden line” in this primary source. What’s the most important sentence? Write this sentence as a direct quote.
Translate this document into today’s language. Go through the whole thing and rewrite it so that you can comfortably understand it. You can use formal or informal language, but do cover the entire document.
List any questions that you have about this document. This could be as simple as questions around sticking points or phrases used… and/or questions about the history of this period.
How can this particular law in Mississippi have existed at the same time as the Reconstruction amendments (13th, 14th, and 15th)? What did freedom in Mississippi mean for newly freed people?
This is worth a potential of five points of extra credit, earned on meeting the criteria of: thoroughness, clarity, and evidence of critical & creative thinking.
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