200 Alabama Bicentennial

Celebrating Alabama’s 200th birthday2017 2018 2019

  • Diary kept by Sarah Follansbee, a teacher in Montgomery, Alabama.

    In the diary Follansbee writes about everyday life during Reconstruction, describing the scarcity of goods, price fluctuations, and embargos placed on the South. She also discusses social life, domestic activities, and her students. A transcript is included.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Letter from John E. Norcross in Montgomery, Alabama, to his grandfather.

    Before the Civil War, Norcross was a reporter in Philadelphia, and he served in several regiments of the Union Army during war. He moved to Alabama in 1867 to take advantage of business and political opportunities during reconstruction, but he left the state for New York in 1869. In the letter he discusses Alabama's industrial opportunities and political news, including the upcoming ratification of the new constitution.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • General Order Number 101 from the headquarters of the Third Military District in Montgomery, AL, outlining voting procedures for the election to ratify the state constitution held in February 1868

    The circular instructs registrars to note "the number of white voters for and against the Constitution... and the number of colored voters for and against the same." The circular also notes that voting tests "imposed by the new Constitution" would not be applied until after the election.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Excerpt on Samuel A. Hale by Ruby Pickens Tartt; part of “Life Histories/Stories” of Sumter County

    Folder contains 37 pages of life histories and stories compiled for the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in the late 1930s.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Article 1 of the Alabama Constitution of 1868

    Also known as the "Radical" or "Reconstruction Constitution." The document was revised by the constitutional convention on November 5, 1867, and ratified in 1868. Article 1 lists the Declaration of Rights, including the notion that "all men are created equal." This is the first time this verbiage appears and would ever appear in an Alabama governing document. The last page is signed by Elijah Wolsey Peck, president of the convention, Robert Barber, secretary of the convention, and 65 of the convention delegates. The document is written on 21 sheets of parchment, each page glued to the one below it; it is approximately 33.5 feet long and 18 inches wide.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Article 7 of the Alabama Constitution of 1868

    Also known as the "Radical" or "Reconstruction Constitution." The document was revised by the constitutional convention on November 5, 1867, and ratified in 1868. Article 7 focuses on the franchise as the 1867 convention perceived it. Section 4 contains the oath that citizens had to take in order to be reinstated on the voting register. The last page is signed by Elijah Wolsey Peck, president of the convention, Robert Barber, secretary of the convention, and 65 of the convention delegates. The document is written on 21 sheets of parchment, each page glued to the one below it; it is approximately 33.5 feet long and 18 inches wide.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Article 9 of the Alabama Constitution of 1868

    Also known as the "Radical" or "Reconstruction Constitution." The document was revised by the constitutional convention on November 5, 1867, and ratified in 1868. Article 9 outlines the process of taxation for the first time. The last page is signed by Elijah Wolsey Peck, president of the convention, Robert Barber, secretary of the convention, and 65 of the convention delegates. The document is written on 21 sheets of parchment, each page glued to the one below it; it is approximately 33.5 feet long and 18 inches wide.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Alabama Constitution of 1868

    Also known as the "Radical" or "Reconstruction Constitution." The document was revised by the constitutional convention on November 5, 1867, and ratified in 1868. The constitution includes the following articles: declaration of rights; state and county boundaries; distribution of powers of government; legislative department; executive department; judicial department; elections; representation; taxation; militia; education; industrial resources; corporations; exempted property; oath of office (declaring support and defense of the United States Constitution); and amendments to the constitution. The last page is signed by Elijah Wolsey Peck, president of the convention, Robert Barber, secretary of the convention, and 65 of the convention delegates. The document is written on 21 sheets of parchment, each page glued to the one below it; it is approximately 33.5 feet long and 18 inches wide.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Letter from M. G. Milligan in Gadsden, Alabama, to “Brother Gooch.”

    In the letter Milligan discusses his employment, working as both a storekeeper and a teacher ("I am teaching a mixed school, and it has opened with flattering prospects"). He writes of the tense political climate in the state and efforts to extend power to African Americans: "We have a conservative party composed of... old Conservative union men of the right stamp. Also a union league party composed of tories and a set of corrupt designing men to low and mean to have a place among desent white men, and have no asperations, such as white men have, but seek in a stealthy manner the degredation and ruin of the white man, willing to sacrafice him to elevate the negroe. Oh that such should live in the South who would be in favor of that iniquitous concern, known as radical Congress." He also mentions the dire economic situation affecting all citizens: "No relief has as yet been sent the suffering poor of this land or section of county. I know not what will become of the poor, both white and black.... No money no friends who are able to help no supplies to spare in all this part of the land." [Original spelling retained.]

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Members of the Alabama Reconstruction Senate on the steps of the Capitol in Montgomery, AL

    Members of the Alabama Reconstruction Senate on the steps of the Capitol in Montgomery, Alabama.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • “Vote for the Constitution!”

    This article demonstrates the basic necessities of day-to-day life the passage of the new Constitution would provide and urges voters to approve the measure.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • Voter Turnout for the 1868 Constitution

    This chart shows the number of voters who participated in elections in 1867 and 1868. The numbers are separated by white and black voters.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • “To Colored Democrats”

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More
  • “To the Thinking Men of Alabama”

    This newspaper article is an appeal to voters in Alabama who were struggling with the adoption of the new Constitution. The author argues that Alabamians should not be distracted by the appeals of those in high office or esteem, since it was they who in many ways got Alabama in the condition that it was in.

    ALCOS Social Studies Content Standard Grade(s): 4, 5, 7 (Civics), 10, 12 (US Government)

    Read More

Back to Educators » Primary Source Packets » Constitutions and Citizenship