Definitions for scalawagˈskæl əˌwæg
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
a scamp; rascal.
a white Southerner who supported Republican policy during Reconstruction, often for personal gain.
Category: American History
Origin of scalawag:
1840–50, Amer.; orig. uncert.
a white Southerner who supported Reconstruction policies after the American Civil War (usually for self-interest)
rogue, knave, rascal, rapscallion, scalawag, scallywag, varlet(noun)
a deceitful and unreliable scoundrel
imp, scamp, monkey, rascal, rapscallion, scalawag, scallywag(noun)
one who is playfully mischievous
Any white Southerner who supported the federal plan of Reconstruction after the Civil War or who joined with the black freedmen and the carpetbaggers in support of Republican Party policies.
Origin: Of origin, "scalawag" refers to a "rascal" and is probably from sgalog a labourer.
a scamp; a scapegrace
In United States history, scalawags were southern whites who supported Reconstruction and the Republican Party after the Civil War. Like similar terms such as "carpetbagger" the word has a long history of use as a slur against southerners considered by other conservative or pro-federation Southerners to betray southern values by supporting policies considered Northern such as desegregation and racial integration. The term is commonly used in historical studies as a neutral descriptor of Southern White Republicans, though some historians have discarded the term due to its history of pejorative connotations.
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