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After the War of 1812, New York was open for business again after seven years of embargo, war, and threatened invasion.

In shipping, wealth, and population, the city shot far ahead of every rival. New York quickly became one of the fastest-growing cities in the world. Commissioners ambitiously projected the street grid to reach Manhattan's northern tip.

The explosive transformation of New York is evident in these two contrasting views of New York.
In 1815, New York City and its black residents looked to the future with hope. New York's blacks had helped defend the city during the War of 1812. In 1817, a grateful state passed the Abolition Act, emancipating any remaining slaves by July 4, 1827. Yet this concord soured over the following years: more white New Yorkers talked of removing free blacks to Africa; the new state constitution of 1821 disfranchised almost all black men; and white laborers and Democrats used a more violent racism to exclude blacks from all but the most menial work.
Political Disaster: Gaining Freedom, losing the vote
Losing Jobs
Urging Blacks to Leave