The burning of the Hernando County Courthouse in 1877 is indicative of the lawless period that followed the Civil War. Many of the men returning from the war had seen unspeakable things. The people who had stayed behind had been raided by both sides either seeking supplies or destroying them.
After the Civil War the reconstruction laws put the Military incharge of running the former Confederate states. The reconstruction laws also disenfranchised all officers and elected officials of the Confederacy.