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After the Civil War
(1865-1870)

Carpetbaggers and Scalawags



Carpetbaggers and Scalawags
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.85

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    jigsaw, scalawag, newly, leadership, federal, setting, county, unfair, beginning, schools, jobs, public, dishonest, powerful, working, soldier
     content words:    American Civil War, United States, Civil War, Confederate States, Union Army, Marshall Twitchell, Confederate General James Longstreet, Robert E., Ulysses Grant, In South Carolina


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Carpetbaggers and Scalawags
By Toni Lee Robinson
  

1     The American Civil War was over. The soldiers were coming home! But the war had brought many changes to the southern United States. It was like a big jigsaw puzzle with the pieces all mixed up. No one was sure how to sort it out.
 
2     One thing that had to be fixed was the leadership. The southern states had made their own government at the beginning of the Civil War. They called themselves the Confederate States of America. The United States had sent the Union Army to bring these states back under national rule. The U.S. did not agree that states could make their own rules.
 
3     The Union had won the war against the Confederate States. It was time to put the damaged country back together. Could the Southern states be made to fit back into the United States? Each state would need a person to take charge. Each would need lawmakers and judges. But who would these leaders be?
 
4     Different people came to do these jobs. Some people came from the northern states to find jobs and make money in the South. Union soldier Marshall Twitchell took a job in Louisiana to help freed slaves. Part of his job was collecting taxes to pay for the new government. All the white planters thought the taxes were unfair. They thought Mr. Twitchell was spending the money on himself.
 
5     Southerners didn't like these Northerners. They called them carpetbaggers, after the cloth bags that some carried. "These carpetbaggers didn't come to help," Southerners thought. "They're only after money!"

Paragraphs 6 to 12:
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