The end of the Civil War in 1865 brought significant change to the United States. The war had destroyed the physical fabric of the South, ushering in an age of reform and rebuilding that would create a new South free from slavery and open to progress and industrialization. But much of the promise of the post-war South was lost in the political heat of Reconstruction, which pitted Radical Republicans against Redeemer Democrats. As these events unfolded during the 1860s and 1870s across the South, more people began to migrate to the Old West. But just as Reconstruction and its aftermath ultimately failed to lift newly freed blacks out from under white racism, so the settling of the West left thousands of Indians dispossessed and defeated. The New South and the Old West: 1866-1890 takes readers on a journey through the efforts to reconstruct the ravaged South and the push to create new life in the promising land to the west of the Mississippi.