*Party division totals are based on election day results.
With Ulysses S. Grant ensconced in the White House the 41st Congress (1869–1871) was freed to implement its Reconstruction program without delay. Numerous Southern Members, including the first African Americans in Congress—Senator Hiram Revels of Mississippi and Representative Joseph Rainey of South Carolina—returned to the Capitol for the first time since the start of the war. Congress empowered new President Grant to preserve order in the South with two Ku Klux Klan acts aimed at suppressing mob rule by white supremacists. Congress also reformed the federal judiciary and established the Department of Justice.
See more Historical Highlights.
To view complete lists of individuals who have served in these leadership and official positions since the 1st Congress, visit the People section
1Conference minutes show Representative Schenck elected; chairman, but Representative Banks chairing two early meetings, possibly in Schenck's absence.
2Caucus records show Representative Niblack and Representative Randall as both having served as chairman during the Congress, but no dates of service were specified.