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Land order for Richard Brown, April 1, 1865 (Charleston, South Carolina)

In January 1865 General William T. Sherman authorized the confiscation of Confederate land along the Atlantic Coast for redistribution into 40-acre tracts to be given to newly freed African Americans such as freedman Richard Brown. Later that year President Andrew Johnson ended this land redistribution and returned captured properties to pardoned former landowners.

Records of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, National Archives and Records Administration

Land order for Richard Brown, April 1, 1865 (Charleston, South Carolina)

The Freedmen's Bureau - 2

In 1865 Congress created the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands, known as the Freedmen's Bureau, to provide for the needs of displaced and formerly enslaved persons. The Freedmen's Bureau provided humanitarian, educational, and legal services. It also supervised labor contracts and redistributed abandoned lands. Separately, Congress chartered the Freedman's Bank to encourage savings. Four African Americans elected to the House in the 19th century––Representatives John Mercer Langston, Jeremiah Haralson, Josiah Walls, and Robert C. De Large—had worked for the Freedmen's Bureau.