On July 4th, 1868, President Johnson gave amnesty to approximately 300 Southerners still under the edict of rebellion, except for several top Confederate officials. On Christmas 1868, he pardoned the rest, including Breckenridge, Slidell, and Thompson. This was significant because Johnson had just been impeached (in March) and though he hoped he would receive the Democratic nomination at the Democratic National Convention later that week, he was too unpopular with both parties to really be considered as a candidate. His official proclamation states his reasons for granting pardon, which was to secure a complete and universal establishment and prevalence of municipal law and order.' His pardoning of former Confederates was one of the last presidential acts he would undertake. Though not every state was yet declared reconstructed,' this pardon symbolized the official end of Reconstruction.