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First Vote - Black Men in America

First Vote - Black Men in America Civil Rights American History African American History Law and Politics Social Studies Education

The First Vote, drawn by Alfred R. Waud, depicts a scene when black men first voted in America.  It was published in the November 16, 1867 issue of Harper's Weekly.

At the time, black and white women remained disenfranchised.

The Library of Congress provides more information about this illustration:

The Fifteenth Amendment to the U. S. Constitution, ratified March 30, 1870, provided that all male citizens were entitled to vote. Because the black population was so large in many parts of the South, whites were fearful of their participation in the political process. Nevertheless, the Radical Republicans in the U.S. Congress were determined that African Americans be accorded all of the rights of citizenship.


Media Credits

Alfred R. Waud

"The First Vote"

From Harper's Weekly, November 16, 1867

Image, Library of Congress

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