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1866 Charles E. Lewis

CHARLES E LEWIS 1866In re-establishing the new government, Mayor Henderson and the Board of Aldermen reverted to the pre-war custom of holding the city’s general election on the last Thursday of December.  On December 28, 1865, republican Charles Lewis became the first full term mayor elected after the Civil War. Like the fall 1865 election, any citizen with known ties to the former Confederate government or sympathizer could not vote.  Those elected had either worked with Union military officials or could prove that they had remained neutral throughout the recent war. 

Chattanooga, during Lewis’ term of service, not only saw a return of some residents who had been displaced by the war, but also saw a large influx of northerners coming south to take advantage of a city working to rebuild.

Photo by Phillip Stevens and Matt Lea