Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi:
South Carolina senator Matthew Butler and Alabama senator and former Ku Klux Klan Grand Dragon John Tyler Morgan introduced a congressional bill on January 7, 1890, to fund Black emigration to Africa. It was an ingenious solution to the class and racial problems of big southern landowners. Withering under a southern agricultural depression, many White “dirt farmers” were raging against the Black farmers; others were joining with Blacks to rage against White landowners in the rising interracial, antiracist populist movement. The colonization bill was a deflective measure. It pointed White farmers to southern Blacks—and not rich White landowners—as the chief cause of the southern agrarian depression. White farmers could easily see how the mass ejection of southern Blacks would increase their own labor value.