Laws and unofficial social codes put in place in the United States to limit basic rights of blacks.

Exact DefinitionEdit

The Black Codes were laws, both official and unofficial, put in place in the United States to limit the basic human rights and civil liberties of blacks. The codes reflected the unwillingness of white Southerners to accept blacks as equals and also their fears that freedmen would not work unless coerced. Thus the codes continued legal discrimination between whites and blacks.


Played a key role in agitating the Radical Republican Congress after the Civil War. This made Congress advocate for more black civil rights and led to the passage of the 14th and 15th amendments.

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