"An extraordinary and very perilous state of affairs had been created in the [US] South by the sudden and absolute emancipation of the negroes. Here was a vast laboring, landless, homeless class, once slaves, now free; unpractised in liberty, unschooled in self-control; never sobered by the discipline of self-support never established in any habit of prudence; excited by a freedom they did not understand, excited by false hopes; bewildered and without leaders, and yet insolent and aggressive; sick of work, covetous of pleasure - a host of dusky children untimely put out of school."

- Woodrow Wilson