When slavery was abolished in 1865, slaves' lives improved but not by much. They were still looked down on by the rest of society and did not have any rights. They still worked the same jobs only for a lower wage and most lived in poverty. The conditions African Americans had to live with, however, were still better than those of slaves. They found ways to grow together as a culture by meeting in churches and getting educations. This, in term, blended cultural and social tendencies together which strengthened the people as a whole. In the article below it introduces people to the black church and the cultural values it provided for many families across the United States.