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The Freedmen’s Aid Society
was founded in 1861 during the American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...
by the American Missionary Association
The American Missionary Association was a Protestant-based abolitionist group founded on September 3, 1846 in Albany, New York. The main purpose of this organization was to abolish slavery, to educate African Americans, to promote racial equality, and to promote Christian values...
(AMA), a group supported chiefly by the Congregational, Presbyterian and Methodist churches in the North. It organized a supply of teachers from the North and provided housing for them, to set up and teach in schools in the South for freedmen and their children. The AMA founded a total of more than 500 schools and colleges for freedmen in the South after the war, so that freedmen could be educated as teachers, nurses and other professionals.
The work of the Society accelerated with the end of the war and the Reconstruction era. The Society was supported by a variety of religious groups and denominations, and it began work in the South only three months after organizing. By the end of the first year, it had recruited 52 instructors. The teachers instructed more than 5,000 students in 59 schools. The schools were open to men, women, and children in the South.