Rehearsal in Missouri for the Liberal republican Movement,1865–1870

Andrew L. Slap

in The Doom of Reconstruction

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print February 2007 | ISBN: 9780823227099
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823234998 | DOI:

Series: Reconstructing America

Rehearsal in             Missouri for the Liberal republican Movement,1865–1870

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This chapter discusses events in Missouri politics between 1865 and 1870 that can be seen as a dress rehearsal for the national liberal republican movement and provide insights into its composition and ideology. When, during the 1870 elections, Senator Carl Schurz of Missouri led a group of “Liberal Republicans” against the state Republican Party in support of amnesty for former Confederates, reform of civil service, and free trade, he put in motion a process that would lead to the formation of a national liberal republican movement that shared these goals. Schurz's Missouri Liberals, like the national liberal republicans, used classical republican arguments—that corruption, centralized power, and dependent citizens were a threat to liberty—to support their claim that the Republicans were endangering America's future. Both groups relied on German Americans for support, and both hoped to gain control of the Republican Party through the use of Democratic votes.

Keywords: Carl Schurz; Liberal Republicans; Missouri; German Americans; liberal republican movement

Chapter.  11398 words. 

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