The Info List - Emancipation Proclamation

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The Emancipation Proclamation, or Proclamation 95, was a presidential proclamation and executive order issued by U.S. President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863. It changed the federal legal status of more than 3 million enslaved people in the designated areas of the South from slave to free. As soon as a slave escaped the control of the Confederate government, by running away or through advances of federal troops, the slave became legally free. Ultimately, the rebel surrender liberated and resulted in the proclamation's application to all of the designated slaves. It did not cover slaves in Union areas that were freed by state action (or 3 years later by the 13th amendment in December 1865). It was issued as a war measure during the American Civil War, directed to all of the areas in rebellion and all segments of the executive branch (including the Army and Navy) of the United States.[2] The Proclamation ordered the freedom of all slaves in ten states.[3] Because it was issued under the president's authority to suppress rebellion (war powers), it necessarily excluded areas not in rebellion, but still applied to more than 3 million of the 4 million slaves. The Proclamation was based on the president's constitutional authority as commander in chief of the armed forces;[4] it was not a law passed by Congress. The Proclamation was issued in January 1863 after U.S government issued a series of warnings in the summer of 1862 under the Second Confiscation Act, allowing Southern Confederate supporters 60 days to surrender, or face confiscation of land and slaves. The Proclamation also ordered that suitable persons among those freed could be enrolled into the paid service of United States' forces, and ordered the Union Army
Union Army
(and all segments of the Executive branch) to "recognize and maintain the freedom of" the ex-slaves. The Proclamation did not compensate the owners, did not outlaw slavery, and did not grant citizenship to the ex-slaves (called freedmen). It made the eradication of slavery an explicit war goal, in addition to the goal of reuniting the Union.[5] Around 25,000 to 75,000 slaves in regions where the US Army was active were immediately emancipated. It could not be enforced in areas still under rebellion, but, as the Union army took control of Confederate regions, the Proclamation provided the legal framework for freeing more than three million slaves in those regions. Prior to the Proclamation, in accordance with the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, escaped slaves were either returned to their masters or held in camps as contraband for later return. The Proclamation applied only to slaves in Confederate-held lands; it did not apply to those in the four slave states that were not in rebellion (Kentucky, Maryland, Delaware, and Missouri, which were unnamed), nor to Tennessee
(unnamed but occupied by Union troops since 1862) and lower Louisiana
(also under occupation), and specifically excluded those counties of Virginia
soon to form the state of West Virginia. Also specifically excluded (by name) were some regions already controlled by the Union army. Emancipation in those places would come after separate state actions or the December 1865 ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment, which made slavery and indentured servitude, except for those duly convicted of a crime, illegal everywhere subject to United States jurisdiction.[6]

Abraham Lincoln

On September 22, 1862, Lincoln issued a preliminary warning that he would order the emancipation of all slaves in any state that did not end its rebellion against the Union by January 1, 1863.[7] None of the Confederate states restored themselves to the Union, and Lincoln's order was signed and took effect on January 1, 1863. The Emancipation Proclamation outraged white Southerners (and their sympathizers) who envisioned a race war. It angered some Northern Democrats, energized anti-slavery forces, and undermined elements in Europe that wanted to intervene to help the Confederacy.[8] The Proclamation lifted the spirits of African Americans both free and slave. It led many slaves to escape from their masters and get to Union lines to obtain their freedom, and to join the Union Army. The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
broadened the goals of the Civil War. While slavery had been a major issue that led to the war, Lincoln's only mission at the start of the war was to maintain the Union. The Proclamation made freeing the slaves an explicit goal of the Union war effort. Establishing the abolition of slavery as one of the two primary war goals served to deter intervention by Britain and France.[9] The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
was never challenged in court. To ensure the abolition of slavery in all of the U.S., Lincoln pushed for passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, and insisted that Reconstruction plans for Southern states require abolition in new state constitutions. Congress passed the 13th Amendment by the necessary two-thirds vote on January 31, 1865, and it was ratified by the states on December 6, 1865, ending legal slavery.[10]


1 Authority 2 Coverage 3 Background

3.1 Military action prior to emancipation 3.2 Governmental action towards emancipation 3.3 Public opinion of emancipation

4 Drafting and issuance of the proclamation 5 Implementation

5.1 Immediate impact 5.2 Political impact

5.2.1 Confederate response

5.3 International impact

6 Gettysburg Address 7 Postbellum 8 Critiques 9 Legacy in the Civil Rights Era

9.1 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

9.1.1 The "Second Emancipation Proclamation"

9.2 President John F. Kennedy 9.3 President Lyndon B. Johnson

10 In popular culture 11 See also 12 Notes 13 Further reading

13.1 Primary sources

14 External links


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v t e

Further information: Slave states and free states The United States Constitution
United States Constitution
of 1787 did not use the word "slavery" but included several provisions about unfree persons. The Three-Fifths Compromise (in Article I, Section 2) allocated Congressional representation based "on the whole Number of free Persons" and "three fifths of all other Persons".[11] Under the Fugitive Slave Clause (Article IV, Section 2), "[n]o person held to service or labour in one state" would be freed by escaping to another. Article I, Section 9 allowed Congress to pass legislation to outlaw the "Importation of Persons", but not until 1808.[12] However, for purposes of the Fifth Amendment—which states that, "No person shall ... be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law"—slaves were understood as property.[13] Although abolitionists used the Fifth Amendment to argue against slavery, it became part of the legal basis for treating slaves as property with Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857).[14] Socially, slavery was also supported in law and in practice by a pervasive culture of white supremacy.[15] Nonetheless, between 1777 and 1804, every Northern state provided for the immediate or gradual abolition of slavery, except the border states of Maryland and Delaware. Maryland
did not abolish slavery until 1864,[16] and Delaware
was one of the last states to hold onto slavery; it was still legal in Delaware
when the thirteenth amendment was issued.[17] No Southern state did so, and the slave population of the South continued to grow, peaking at almost 4 million people at the beginning of the American Civil War, in which most slave states sought to break away from the United States.[18] Lincoln understood that the Federal government's power to end slavery in peacetime was limited by the Constitution which before 1865, committed the issue to individual states.[19] Against the background of the American Civil War, however, Lincoln issued the Proclamation under his authority as "Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy" under Article II, section 2 of the United States Constitution.[20] As such, he claimed to have the martial power to free persons held as slaves in those states that were in rebellion "as a fit and necessary war measure for suppressing said rebellion".[21] He did not have Commander-in-Chief authority over the four slave-holding states that were not in rebellion: Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland
and Delaware, and so those states were not named in the Proclamation.[23] The fifth border jurisdiction, West Virginia, where slavery remained legal but was in the process of being abolished, was, in January 1863, still part of the legally recognized, "reorganized" state of Virginia, based in Alexandria, which was in the Union (as opposed to the Confederate state of Virginia, based in Richmond). Coverage[edit] The Proclamation applied in the ten states that were still in rebellion in 1863, and thus did not cover the nearly 500,000 slaves in the slave-holding border states (Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland
or Delaware) which were Union states. Those slaves were freed by later separate state and federal actions. The state of Tennessee
had already mostly returned to Union control, under a recognized Union government, so it was not named and was exempted. Virginia
was named, but exemptions were specified for the 48 counties then in the process of forming the new state of West Virginia, and seven additional counties and two cities in the Union-controlled Tidewater region.[24] Also specifically exempted were New Orleans
New Orleans
and 13 named parishes of Louisiana, which were mostly under federal control at the time of the Proclamation. These exemptions left unemancipated an additional 300,000 slaves.[25] The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
has been ridiculed, notably in an influential passage by Richard Hofstadter
Richard Hofstadter
for "freeing" only the slaves over which the Union had no power.[26] These slaves were freed due to Lincoln's "war powers". This act cleared up the issue of contraband slaves.[27] It automatically clarified the status of over 100,000 now-former slaves. Some 20,000 to 50,000 slaves were freed the day it went into effect[28] in parts of nine of the ten states to which it applied (Texas being the exception).[29] In every Confederate state (except Tennessee
and Texas), the Proclamation went into immediate effect in Union-occupied areas and at least 20,000 slaves[28][29] were freed at once on January 1, 1863.

The moment portrayed by Lee Lawrie
Lee Lawrie
in Lincoln, Nebraska

The Proclamation provided the legal framework for the emancipation of nearly all four million slaves as the Union armies advanced, and committed the Union to ending slavery, which was a controversial decision even in the North. Hearing of the Proclamation, more slaves quickly escaped to Union lines as the Army units moved South. As the Union armies advanced through the Confederacy, thousands of slaves were freed each day until nearly all (approximately 3.9 million, according to the 1860 Census)[30] were freed by July 1865. While the Proclamation had freed most slaves as a war measure, it had not made slavery illegal. Of the states that were exempted from the Proclamation, Maryland,[31] Missouri,[32] Tennessee,[33] and West Virginia[34] prohibited slavery before the war ended. In 1863, President Lincoln proposed a moderate plan for the Reconstruction of the captured Confederate State of Louisiana.[35] Only 10% of the state's electorate had to take the loyalty oath. The state was also required to abolish slavery in its new constitution. Identical Reconstruction plans would be adopted in Arkansas and Tennessee. By December 1864, the Lincoln plan abolishing slavery had been enacted in Louisiana.[36][37] However, in Delaware[38] and Kentucky,[39] slavery continued to be legal until December 18, 1865, when the Thirteenth Amendment went into effect. Background[edit]

First Reading of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
of President Lincoln by Francis Bicknell Carpenter[40] (People in the image are clickable.)

Military action prior to emancipation[edit] The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850
Fugitive Slave Act of 1850
required individuals to return runaway slaves to their owners. During the war, Union generals such as Benjamin Butler declared that slaves in occupied areas were contraband of war and accordingly refused to return them.[41] This decision was controversial because it implied recognition of the Confederacy as a separate, independent sovereign state under international law, a notion that Lincoln steadfastly denied. As a result, he did not promote the contraband designation. In addition, as contraband, these people were legally designated as "property" when they crossed Union lines and their ultimate status was uncertain.[42] Governmental action towards emancipation[edit] In December 1861, Lincoln sent his first annual message to Congress (the State of the Union Address, but then typically given in writing and not referred to as such). In it he praised the free labor system, as respecting human rights over property rights; he endorsed legislation to address the status of contraband slaves and slaves in loyal states, possibly through buying their freedom with federal taxes, and also the funding of strictly voluntary colonization efforts.[43] In January 1862, Thaddeus Stevens, the Republican leader in the House, called for total war against the rebellion to include emancipation of slaves, arguing that emancipation, by forcing the loss of enslaved labor, would ruin the rebel economy. On March 13, 1862, Congress approved a "Law Enacting an Additional Article of War", which stated that from that point onward it was forbidden for Union Army officers to return fugitive slaves to their owners.[44] On April 10, 1862, Congress declared that the federal government would compensate slave owners who freed their slaves. Slaves in the District of Columbia were freed on April 16, 1862, and their owners were compensated. On June 19, 1862, Congress prohibited slavery in all current and future United States territories (though not in the states), and President Lincoln quickly signed the legislation. By this act, they repudiated the 1857 opinion of the Supreme Court of the United States in the Dred Scott Case that Congress was powerless to regulate slavery in U.S. territories.[45][46] This joint action by Congress and President Lincoln also rejected the notion of popular sovereignty that had been advanced by Stephen A. Douglas
Stephen A. Douglas
as a solution to the slavery controversy, while completing the effort first legislatively proposed by Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson
in 1784 to confine slavery within the borders of existing states.[47][48] In July, Congress passed and Lincoln signed the Confiscation Act of 1862, containing provisions for court proceedings to liberate slaves held by convicted "rebels", or of slaves of rebels that had escaped to Union lines.[49] The Act applied in cases of criminal convictions and to those who were slaves of "disloyal" masters. However, Lincoln's position continued to be that Congress lacked power to free all slaves within the borders of rebel held states, but Lincoln as commander in chief could do so if he deemed it a proper military measure,[50] and that Lincoln had already drafted plans to do. Public opinion of emancipation[edit]

Medical examination photo of Gordon, widely distributed by Abolitionists to expose the brutality of slavery

Abolitionists had long been urging Lincoln to free all slaves. In the summer of 1862, Republican editor Horace Greeley
Horace Greeley
of the highly influential New York Tribune
New York Tribune
wrote a famous editorial entitled "The Prayer of Twenty Millions" demanding a more aggressive attack on the Confederacy and faster emancipation of the slaves: "On the face of this wide earth, Mr. President, there is not one ... intelligent champion of the Union cause who does not feel ... that the rebellion, if crushed tomorrow, would be renewed if slavery were left in full vigor ... and that every hour of deference to slavery is an hour of added and deepened peril to the Union."[51] Lincoln responded in his Letter To Horace Greeley
Horace Greeley
from August 22, 1862, in terms of the limits imposed by his duty as president to save the Union:

If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union.... I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty; and I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men everywhere could be free.[52]

"Lincoln Speaks to Freedmen on the Steps of the Capital at Richmond"

Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer wrote in this context about Lincoln's letter: "Unknown to Greeley, Lincoln composed this after he had already drafted a preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, which he had determined to issue after the next Union military victory. Therefore, this letter, was in truth, an attempt to position the impending announcement in terms of saving the Union, not freeing slaves as a humanitarian gesture. It was one of Lincoln's most skillful public relations efforts, even if it has cast longstanding doubt on his sincerity as a liberator."[53] Historian Richard Striner argues that "for years" Lincoln's letter has been misread as "Lincoln only wanted to save the Union."[54] However, within the context of Lincoln's entire career and pronouncements on slavery this interpretation is wrong, according to Striner. Rather, Lincoln was softening the strong Northern white supremacist opposition to his imminent emancipation by tying it to the cause of the Union. This opposition would fight for the Union but not to end slavery, so Lincoln gave them the means and motivation to do both, at the same time.[54] In his 2014 book, Lincoln's Gamble, journalist and historian Todd Brewster asserted that Lincoln's desire to reassert the saving of the Union as his sole war goal was in fact crucial to his claim of legal authority for emancipation. Since slavery was protected by the Constitution, the only way that he could free the slaves was as a tactic of war—not as the mission itself.[55] But that carried the risk that when the war ended, so would the justification for freeing the slaves. Late in 1862, Lincoln asked his Attorney General, Edward Bates, for an opinion as to whether slaves freed through a war-related proclamation of emancipation could be re-enslaved once the war was over. Bates had to work through the language of the Dred Scott decision to arrive at an answer, but he finally concluded that they could indeed remain free. Still, a complete end to slavery would require a constitutional amendment.[56] Conflicting advice, to free all slaves, or not free them at all, was presented to Lincoln in public and private. Thomas Nast, a cartoon artist during the Civil War and the late 1800s considered "Father of the American Cartoon", composed many works including a two-sided spread that showed the transition from slavery into civilization after President Lincoln signed the Proclamation. Nast believed in equal opportunity and equality for all people, including enslaved Africans or free blacks.[57] A mass rally in Chicago on September 7, 1862, demanded an immediate and universal emancipation of slaves. A delegation headed by William W. Patton
William W. Patton
met the president at the White House on September 13. Lincoln had declared in peacetime that he had no constitutional authority to free the slaves. Even used as a war power, emancipation was a risky political act. Public opinion as a whole was against it.[58] There would be strong opposition among Copperhead Democrats and an uncertain reaction from loyal border states. Delaware
and Maryland
already had a high percentage of free blacks: 91.2% and 49.7%, respectively, in 1860.[59] Drafting and issuance of the proclamation[edit]

has original text related to this article: The Emancipation Proclamation

Eastman Johnson
Eastman Johnson
(American, 1824–1906). A Ride for Liberty – The Fugitive Slaves (recto), ca. 1862.

Lincoln first discussed the proclamation with his cabinet in July 1862. He drafted his "preliminary proclamation" and read it to Secretary of State William Seward, and Secretary of Navy Gideon Welles, on July 13. Seward and Welles were at first speechless, then Seward referred to possible anarchy throughout the South and resulting foreign intervention; Welles apparently said nothing. On July 22, Lincoln presented it to his entire cabinet as something he had determined to do and he asked their opinion on wording.[60] Although Secretary of War Edwin Stanton
Edwin Stanton
supported it, Seward advised Lincoln to issue the proclamation after a major Union victory, or else it would appear as if the Union was giving "its last shriek of retreat".[61] In September 1862, the Battle of Antietam
Battle of Antietam
gave Lincoln the victory he needed to issue the Emancipation. In the battle, though the Union suffered heavier losses than the Confederates and General McClellan allowed the escape of Robert E. Lee's retreating troops, Union forces turned back a Confederate invasion of Maryland. On September 22, 1862, five days after Antietam occurred, and while living at the Soldier's Home, Lincoln called his cabinet into session and issued the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.[62] According to Civil War historian James M. McPherson, Lincoln told Cabinet members that he had made a covenant with God, that if the Union drove the Confederacy out of Maryland, he would issue the Emancipation Proclamation.[63][64] Lincoln had first shown an early draft of the proclamation to Vice President Hannibal Hamlin,[65] an ardent abolitionist, who was more often kept in the dark on presidential decisions. The final proclamation was issued January 1, 1863. Although implicitly granted authority by Congress, Lincoln used his powers as Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, "as a necessary war measure" as the basis of the proclamation, rather than the equivalent of a statute enacted by Congress or a constitutional amendment. Some days after issuing the final Proclamation, Lincoln wrote to Major General John McClernand: "After the commencement of hostilities I struggled nearly a year and a half to get along without touching the "institution"; and when finally I conditionally determined to touch it, I gave a hundred days fair notice of my purpose, to all the States and people, within which time they could have turned it wholly aside, by simply again becoming good citizens of the United States. They chose to disregard it, and I made the peremptory proclamation on what appeared to me to be a military necessity. And being made, it must stand."[66]

Reproduction of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
at the National Underground Railroad
Underground Railroad
Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio

Initially, the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
effectively freed only a small percentage of the slaves, those who were behind Union lines in areas not exempted. Most slaves were still behind Confederate lines or in exempted Union-occupied areas. Secretary of State William H. Seward commented, "We show our sympathy with slavery by emancipating slaves where we cannot reach them and holding them in bondage where we can set them free." Had any slave state ended its secession attempt before January 1, 1863, it could have kept slavery, at least temporarily. The Proclamation only gave the Lincoln Administration the legal basis to free the slaves in the areas of the South that were still in rebellion on January 1, 1863. It effectively destroyed slavery as the Union armies advanced south and conquered the entire Confederacy. The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
also allowed for the enrollment of freed slaves into the United States military. During the war nearly 200,000 blacks, most of them ex-slaves, joined the Union Army.[67] Their contributions gave the North additional manpower that was significant in winning the war. The Confederacy did not allow slaves in their army as soldiers until the last month before its defeat.[68] Though the counties of Virginia
that were soon to form West Virginia were specifically exempted from the Proclamation (Jefferson County being the only exception), a condition of the state's admittance to the Union was that its constitution provide for the gradual abolition of slavery (an immediate emancipation of all slaves was also adopted there in early 1865). Slaves in the border states of Maryland
and Missouri
were also emancipated by separate state action before the Civil War ended. In Maryland, a new state constitution abolishing slavery in the state went into effect on November 1, 1864. The Union-occupied counties of eastern Virginia
and parishes of Louisiana, which had been exempted from the Proclamation, both adopted state constitutions that abolished slavery in April 1864.[69][70] In early 1865, Tennessee
adopted an amendment to its constitution prohibiting slavery.[71][72] Slaves in Kentucky
and Delaware
were not emancipated until the Thirteenth Amendment was ratified. Implementation[edit]

Areas covered by the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
are in red. Slave holding areas not covered are in blue.

Further information: Slave and free states The Proclamation was issued in two parts. The first part, issued on September 22, 1862, was a preliminary announcement outlining the intent of the second part, which officially went into effect 100 days later on January 1, 1863, during the second year of the Civil War. It was Abraham Lincoln's declaration that all slaves would be permanently freed in all areas of the Confederacy that had not already returned to federal control by January 1863. The ten affected states were individually named in the second part (South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina). Not included were the Union slave states of Maryland, Delaware, Missouri
and Kentucky. Also not named was the state of Tennessee, in which a Union-controlled military government had already been set up, based in the capital, Nashville. Specific exemptions were stated for areas also under Union control on January 1, 1863, namely 48 counties that would soon become West Virginia, seven other named counties of Virginia
including Berkeley and Hampshire counties, which were soon added to West Virginia, New Orleans
New Orleans
and 13 named parishes nearby. Union-occupied areas of the Confederate states where the proclamation was put into immediate effect by local commanders included Winchester, Virginia,[73] Corinth, Mississippi,[74] the Sea Islands
Sea Islands
along the coasts of the Carolinas and Georgia,[75] Key West, Florida,[76] and Port Royal, South Carolina.[77] Immediate impact[edit]

A circa 1870 photograph of two children who were likely recently emancipated

It has been inaccurately claimed that the Emancipation Proclamation did not free a single slave;[78] historian Lerone Bennett, Jr.
Lerone Bennett, Jr.
alleged that the proclamation was a hoax deliberately designed not to free any slaves.[79] However, as a result of the Proclamation, many slaves were freed during the course of the war, beginning with the day it took effect; eyewitness accounts at places such as Hilton Head, South Carolina,[80] and Port Royal, South Carolina[77] record celebrations on January 1 as thousands of blacks were informed of their new legal status of freedom. Estimates of how many thousands of slaves were freed immediately by the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
are varied. One contemporary estimate put the 'contraband' population of Union-occupied North Carolina at 10,000, and the Sea Islands
Sea Islands
of South Carolina also had a substantial population. Those 20,000 slaves were freed immediately by the Emancipation Proclamation."[28] This Union-occupied zone where freedom began at once included parts of eastern North Carolina, the Mississippi
Valley, northern Alabama, the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, a large part of Arkansas, and the Sea Islands of Georgia and South Carolina.[81] Although some counties of Union-occupied Virginia
were exempted from the Proclamation, the lower Shenandoah Valley, and the area around Alexandria were covered.[28] Emancipation was immediately enforced as Union soldiers advanced into the Confederacy. Slaves fled their masters and were often assisted by Union soldiers.[82] Booker T. Washington, as a boy of 9 in Virginia, remembered the day in early 1865:[83]

As the great day drew nearer, there was more singing in the slave quarters than usual. It was bolder, had more ring, and lasted later into the night. Most of the verses of the plantation songs had some reference to freedom. ... Some man who seemed to be a stranger (a United States officer, I presume) made a little speech and then read a rather long paper—the Emancipation Proclamation, I think. After the reading we were told that we were all free, and could go when and where we pleased. My mother, who was standing by my side, leaned over and kissed her children, while tears of joy ran down her cheeks. She explained to us what it all meant, that this was the day for which she had been so long praying, but fearing that she would never live to see.

Emancipation took place without violence by masters or ex-slaves. The Proclamation represented a shift in the war objectives of the North—reuniting the nation was no longer the only goal. It represented a major step toward the ultimate abolition of slavery in the United States and a "new birth of freedom". Runaway slaves who had escaped to Union lines had previously been held by the Union Army
Union Army
as "contraband of war" under the Confiscation Acts; when the proclamation took effect, they were told at midnight that they were free to leave. The Sea Islands
Sea Islands
off the coast of Georgia had been occupied by the Union Navy
Union Navy
earlier in the war. The whites had fled to the mainland while the blacks stayed. An early program of Reconstruction was set up for the former slaves, including schools and training. Naval officers read the proclamation and told them they were free.

Winslow Homer's 1876 "A Visit from the Old Mistress" depicts a tense meeting between a group of newly freed slaves and their former slaveholder. Smithsonian Museum of American Art

Slaves had been part of the "engine of war" for the Confederacy. They produced and prepared food; sewed uniforms; repaired railways; worked on farms and in factories, shipping yards, and mines; built fortifications; and served as hospital workers and common laborers. News of the Proclamation spread rapidly by word of mouth, arousing hopes of freedom, creating general confusion, and encouraging thousands to escape to Union lines.[84] George Washington Albright, a teenage slave in Mississippi, recalled that like many of his fellow slaves, his father escaped to join Union forces. According to Albright, plantation owners tried to keep the Proclamation from slaves but news of it came through the "grapevine". The young slave became a "runner" for an informal group they called the 4Ls ("Lincoln's Legal Loyal League") bringing news of the proclamation to secret slave meetings at plantations throughout the region.[85] Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee
saw the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
as a way for the Union to bolster the number of soldiers it could place on the field, making it imperative for the Confederacy to increase their own numbers. Writing on the matter after the sack of Fredericksburg, Lee wrote "In view of the vast increase of the forces of the enemy, of the savage and brutal policy he has proclaimed, which leaves us no alternative but success or degradation worse than death, if we would save the honor of our families from pollution, our social system from destruction, let every effort be made, every means be employed, to fill and maintain the ranks of our armies, until God, in his mercy, shall bless us with the establishment of our independence."[86] Lee's request for a drastic increase of troops would go unfulfilled. Political impact[edit]

"Abe Lincoln's Last Card; Or, Rouge-et-Noir (Red and Black)"; Punch, Volume 43, October 18, 1862, p. 161.— a cartoon by the Englishman John Tenniel, after the London Times stated that Lincoln had played his "last card" in issuing the Proclamation.[87][88] Lincoln's hair is in points, suggesting horns. The cartoon was often reprinted in the Copperhead press.[89][90]

The Proclamation was immediately denounced by Copperhead Democrats who opposed the war and advocated restoring the union by allowing slavery. Horatio Seymour, while running for the governorship of New York, cast the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
as a call for slaves to commit extreme acts of violence on all white southerners, saying it was "a proposal for the butchery of women and children, for scenes of lust and rapine, and of arson and murder, which would invoke the interference of civilized Europe".[91] The Copperheads also saw the Proclamation as an unconstitutional abuse of presidential power. Editor Henry A. Reeves wrote in Greenport's Republican Watchman that "In the name of freedom of Negroes, [the proclamation] imperils the liberty of white men; to test a utopian theory of equality of races which Nature, History and Experience alike condemn as monstrous, it overturns the Constitution and Civil Laws and sets up Military Usurpation in their Stead."[91] Racism remained pervasive on both sides of the conflict and many in the North supported the war only as an effort to force the South to stay in the Union. The promises of many Republican politicians that the war was to restore the Union and not about black rights or ending slavery, were now declared lies by their opponents citing the Proclamation. Copperhead David Allen spoke to a rally in Columbiana, Ohio, stating, "I have told you that this war is carried on for the Negro. There is the proclamation of the President of the United States. Now fellow Democrats I ask you if you are going to be forced into a war against your Brithren of the Southern States for the Negro. I answer No!"[92] The Copperheads saw the Proclamation as irrefutable proof of their position and the beginning of a political rise for their members; in Connecticut, H. B. Whiting wrote that the truth was now plain even to "those stupid thick-headed persons who persisted in thinking that the President was a conservative man and that the war was for the restoration of the Union under the Constitution".[91] War Democrats who rejected the Copperhead position within their party, found themselves in a quandary. While throughout the war they had continued to espouse the racist positions of their party and their disdain of the concerns of slaves, they did see the Proclamation as a viable military tool against the South, and worried that opposing it might demoralize troops in the Union army. The question would continue to trouble them and eventually lead to a split within their party as the war progressed.[91] Lincoln further alienated many in the Union two days after issuing the preliminary copy of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
by suspending habeas corpus. His opponents linked these two actions in their claims that he was becoming a despot. In light of this and a lack of military success for the Union armies, many War Democrat voters who had previously supported Lincoln turned against him and joined the Copperheads in the off-year elections held in October and November.[91] In the 1862 elections, the Democrats gained 28 seats in the House as well as the governorship of New York. Lincoln's friend Orville Hickman Browning told the president that the Proclamation and the suspension of habeas corpus had been "disastrous" for his party by handing the Democrats so many weapons. Lincoln made no response. Copperhead William Javis of Connecticut pronounced the election the "beginning of the end of the utter downfall of Abolitionism
in the United States".[91] Historians James M. McPherson
James M. McPherson
and Allan Nevins state that though the results looked very troubling, they could be seen favorably by Lincoln; his opponents did well only in their historic strongholds and "at the national level their gains in the House were the smallest of any minority party's in an off-year election in nearly a generation. Michigan, California, and Iowa all went Republican.... Moreover, the Republicans picked up five seats in the Senate."[91] McPherson states "If the election was in any sense a referendum on emancipation and on Lincoln's conduct of the war, a majority of Northern voters endorsed these policies."[91] Confederate response[edit] The initial Confederate response was one of expected outrage. The Proclamation was seen as vindication for the rebellion, and proof that Lincoln would have abolished slavery even if the states had remained in the Union.[93] In an August 1863 letter to President Lincoln, U.S. Army general Ulysses S. Grant
Ulysses S. Grant
observed that the Proclamation, combined with the usage of black soldiers by the U.S. Army, profoundly angered the Confederacy, saying that "the emancipation of the Negro, is the heaviest blow yet given the Confederacy. The South rave a great deal about it and profess to be very angry."[94] A few months after the Proclamation took effect, the Confederacy passed a law in May 1863 demanding "full and ample retaliation" against the U.S. for such measures. The Confederacy stated that the black U.S. soldiers captured while fighting against the Confederacy would be tried as slave insurrectionists in civil courts—a capital offense with automatic sentence of death. Less than a year after the law's passage, the Confederates massacred black U.S. soldiers at Fort Pillow.[95] However, some Confederates welcomed the Proclamation, as they believed it would strengthen pro-slavery sentiment in the Confederacy and, thus, lead to greater enlistment of white men into the Confederate army. According to one Confederate man from Kentucky, "The Proclamation is worth three hundred thousand soldiers to our Government at least... It shows exactly what this war was brought about for and the intention of its damnable authors."[96] Even some Union soldiers concurred with this view and expressed reservations about the Proclamation, not on principle, but rather because they were afraid it would increase the Confederacy's determination to fight on and maintain slavery. One Union soldier from New York stated worryingly after the Proclamation's passage, "I know enough of the Southern spirit that I think they will fight for the institution of slavery even to extermination."[97] As a result of the Proclamation, the price of slaves in the Confederacy increased in the months after its issuance, with one Confederate from South Carolina opining in 1865 that "now is the time for Uncle to buy some negro women and children."[98] International impact[edit] As Lincoln had hoped, the Proclamation turned foreign popular opinion in favor of the Union by gaining the support of anti-slavery countries and countries that had already abolished slavery (especially the developed countries in Europe). This shift ended the Confederacy's hopes of gaining official recognition.[99] Since the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
made the eradication of slavery an explicit Union war goal, it linked support for the South to support for slavery. Public opinion in Britain would not tolerate direct support for slavery. British companies, however, continued to build and operate blockade runners for the South. As Henry Adams
Henry Adams
noted, "The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
has done more for us than all our former victories and all our diplomacy." In Italy, Giuseppe Garibaldi
Giuseppe Garibaldi
hailed Lincoln as "the heir of the aspirations of John Brown". On August 6, 1863, Garibaldi wrote to Lincoln: "Posterity will call you the great emancipator, a more enviable title than any crown could be, and greater than any merely mundane treasure".[100] Mayor Abel Haywood, a representative for workers from Manchester, England, wrote to Lincoln saying, "We joyfully honor you for many decisive steps toward practically exemplifying your belief in the words of your great founders: 'All men are created free and equal.'"[101] The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
served to ease tensions with Europe over the North's conduct of the war, and combined with the recent failed Southern offensive at Antietam, to cut off any practical chance for the Confederacy to receive British support in the war.[102] Gettysburg Address[edit] Lincoln's Gettysburg Address
Gettysburg Address
in November 1863 made indirect reference to the Proclamation and the ending of slavery as a war goal with the phrase "new birth of freedom". The Proclamation solidified Lincoln's support among the rapidly growing abolitionist element of the Republican Party and ensured they would not block his re-nomination in 1864.[103] Postbellum[edit]

Emancipation from Freedmen's viewpoint; illustration from Harper's Weekly 1865

Near the end of the war, abolitionists were concerned that the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
would be construed solely as a war measure, Lincoln's original intent, and would no longer apply once fighting ended. They were also increasingly anxious to secure the freedom of all slaves, not just those freed by the Emancipation Proclamation. Thus pressed, Lincoln staked a large part of his 1864 presidential campaign on a constitutional amendment to abolish slavery uniformly throughout the United States. Lincoln's campaign was bolstered by separate votes in both Maryland
and Missouri
to abolish slavery in those states. Maryland's new constitution abolishing slavery took effect in November 1864. Slavery
in Missouri
was ended by executive proclamation of its governor, Thomas C. Fletcher, on January 11, 1865. Winning re-election, Lincoln pressed the lame duck 38th Congress to pass the proposed amendment immediately rather than wait for the incoming 39th Congress to convene. In January 1865, Congress sent to the state legislatures for ratification what became the Thirteenth Amendment, banning slavery in all U.S. states and territories. The amendment was ratified by the legislatures of enough states by December 6, 1865, and proclaimed 12 days later. There were about 40,000 slaves in Kentucky
and 1,000 in Delaware
who were liberated then.[30] Critiques[edit] Further information: Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
and slavery As the years went on and American life continued to be deeply unfair towards blacks, cynicism towards Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation increased. Perhaps the strongest attack was Lerone Bennett's Forced into Glory: Abraham Lincoln's White Dream (2000), which claimed that Lincoln was a white supremacist who issued the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
in lieu of the real racial reforms for which radical abolitionists pushed. In his Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, Allen C. Guelzo noted the professional historians' lack of substantial respect for the document, since it has been the subject of few major scholarly studies. He argued that Lincoln was the US "last Enlightenment politician"[104] and as such was dedicated to removing slavery strictly within the bounds of law. Other historians have given more credit to Lincoln for what he accomplished within the tensions of his cabinet and a society at war, for his own growth in political and moral stature, and for the promise he held out to the slaves.[105] More might have been accomplished if he had not been assassinated. As Eric Foner
Eric Foner

Lincoln was not an abolitionist or Radical Republican, a point Bennett reiterates innumerable times. He did not favor immediate abolition before the war, and held racist views typical of his time. But he was also a man of deep convictions when it came to slavery, and during the Civil War displayed a remarkable capacity for moral and political growth.[106]

Kal Ashraf wrote:

Perhaps in rejecting the critical dualism–Lincoln as individual emancipator pitted against collective self-emancipators–there is an opportunity to recognise the greater persuasiveness of the combination. In a sense, yes: a racist, flawed Lincoln did something heroic, and not in lieu of collective participation, but next to, and enabled, by it. To venerate a singular –Great Emancipator' may be as reductive as dismissing the significance of Lincoln's actions. Who he was as a man, no one of us can ever really know. So it is that the version of Lincoln we keep is also the version we make.[107]

Legacy in the Civil Rights Era[edit]

President Barack Obama
Barack Obama
views the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
in the Oval Office next to a bust of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.[edit] Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr.
made many references to the Emancipation Proclamation during the civil rights movement. These include a speech made at an observance of the hundredth anniversary of the issuing of the Proclamation made in New York City on September 12, 1962 where he placed it alongside the Declaration of Independence as an "imperishable" contribution to civilization, and "All tyrants, past, present and future, are powerless to bury the truths in these declarations". He lamented that despite a history where the United States "proudly professed the basic principles inherent in both documents", it "sadly practiced the antithesis of these principles". He concluded "There is but one way to commemorate the Emancipation Proclamation. That is to make its declarations of freedom real; to reach back to the origins of our nation when our message of equality electrified an unfree world, and reaffirm democracy by deeds as bold and daring as the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation."[108] King's most famous invocation of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
was in a speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial
Lincoln Memorial
at the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom (often referred to as the "I Have a Dream" speech). King began the speech saying "Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination."[109] The "Second Emancipation Proclamation"[edit] Main article: Second Emancipation Proclamation In the early 1960s, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr.
and his associates developed a strategy to call on President John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
to bypass a Southern segregationist opposition in the Congress by issuing an executive order to put an end to segregation. This envisioned document was referred to as the "Second Emancipation Proclamation". President John F. Kennedy[edit] On June 11, 1963, President Kennedy appeared on national television to address the issue of civil rights. Kennedy, who had been routinely criticized as timid by some of the leaders of the civil rights movement, told Americans that two black students had been peacefully enrolled in the University of Alabama with the aid of the National Guard despite the opposition of Governor George Wallace. John Kennedy called it a "moral issue"[110] Invoking the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
he said

“ One hundred years of delay have passed since President Lincoln freed the slaves, yet their heirs, their grandsons, are not fully free. They are not yet freed from the bonds of injustice. They are not yet freed from social and economic oppression. And this Nation, for all its hopes and all its boasts, will not be fully free until all its citizens are free. We preach freedom around the world, and we mean it, and we cherish our freedom here at home, but are we to say to the world, and much more importantly, to each other that this is a land of the free except for the Negroes; that we have no second-class citizens except Negroes; that we have no class or caste system, no ghettoes, no master race except with respect to Negroes? Now the time has come for this Nation to fulfill its promise. The events in Birmingham and elsewhere have so increased the cries for equality that no city or State or legislative body can prudently choose to ignore them.[111] ”

In the same speech, Kennedy announced he would introduce comprehensive civil rights legislation to the United States Congress which he did a week later (he continued to push for its passage until his assassination in November 1963). Historian Peniel E. Joseph
Peniel E. Joseph
holds Lyndon Johnson's ability to get that bill, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, passed on July 2, 1964 was aided by "the moral forcefulness of the June 11 speech" which turned "the narrative of civil rights from a regional issue into a national story promoting racial equality and democratic renewal".[110] President Lyndon B. Johnson[edit] During the civil rights movement of the 1960s, Lyndon B. Johnson invoked the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
holding it up as a promise yet to be fully implemented. As Vice President while speaking from Gettysburg on May 30, 1963 (Memorial Day), at the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation, Johnson connected it directly with the ongoing civil rights struggles of the time saying "One hundred years ago, the slave was freed. One hundred years later, the Negro remains in bondage to the color of his skin.... In this hour, it is not our respective races which are at stake—it is our nation. Let those who care for their country come forward, North and South, white and Negro, to lead the way through this moment of challenge and decision.... Until justice is blind to color, until education is unaware of race, until opportunity is unconcerned with color of men's skins, emancipation will be a proclamation but not a fact. To the extent that the proclamation of emancipation is not fulfilled in fact, to that extent we shall have fallen short of assuring freedom to the free."[112] As president, Johnson again invoked the proclamation in a speech presenting the Voting Rights Act
Voting Rights Act
at a joint session of Congress on Monday, March 15, 1965. This was one week after violence had been inflicted on peaceful civil rights marchers during the Selma to Montgomery marches. Johnson said "... it's not just Negroes, but really it's all of us, who must overcome the crippling legacy of bigotry and injustice. And we shall overcome. As a man whose roots go deeply into Southern soil, I know how agonizing racial feelings are. I know how difficult it is to reshape the attitudes and the structure of our society. But a century has passed—more than 100 years—since the Negro was freed. And he is not fully free tonight. It was more than 100 years ago that Abraham Lincoln—a great President of another party—signed the Emancipation Proclamation. But emancipation is a proclamation and not a fact. A century has passed—more than 100 years—since equality was promised, and yet the Negro is not equal. A century has passed since the day of promise, and the promise is unkept. The time of justice has now come, and I tell you that I believe sincerely that no force can hold it back. It is right in the eyes of man and God that it should come, and when it does, I think that day will brighten the lives of every American."[113] In popular culture[edit]

U.S. commemorative stamp, 1963[114]

In episode 86 of The Andy Griffith Show, Andy asks Barney to explain the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
to Opie who is struggling with history at school.[115] Barney brags about his history expertise, yet it is apparent he cannot answer Andy's question. He finally becomes frustrated and explains it is a proclamation for certain people who wanted emancipation.[116] In South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut, Chef asks the military commander if he has "ever heard of the Emancipation Proclamation?" To which the military commander replies: "I dont listen to hip-hop." The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
is celebrated around the world including on stamps of nations such as the Republic of Togo.[117] The United States commemorative was issued on August 16, 1963, the opening day of the Century of Negro Progress Exposition in Chicago, Illinois. Designed by Georg Olden, an initial printing of 120 million stamps was authorized.[114]

See also[edit]

Abolition of slavery timeline Act Prohibiting the Return of Slaves
Act Prohibiting the Return of Slaves
– 1862 statute District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act Emancipation Memorial
Emancipation Memorial
– a sculpture in Washington, D.C., completed in 1876 History of slavery
History of slavery
in Kentucky History of slavery
History of slavery
in Missouri Juneteenth Slavery
Abolition Act 1833 – an act passed by the British parliament abolishing slavery in British colonies with compensation to the owners Slave Trade Acts Timeline of the civil rights movement War Governors' Conference
War Governors' Conference
– gave Lincoln the much needed political support to issue the Proclamation United States labor law


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(1907). Up From Slavery: an autobiography. Doubleday, Page. pp. 19–21.  ^ Goodheart, Adam (2011). 1861: The Civil War Awakening. New York: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.  ^ Jenkins, Sally, and John Stauffer. The State of Jones. New York: Anchor Books edition/Random House, c. 2009 (2010). ISBN 978-0-7679-2946-2, p. 42 ^ Shelby Foote (1963). The Civil War, a Narrative: Fredericksburg to Meridian. Volume 2. Random House.  ^ "London Times Editorial". Oct 6, 1862. Retrieved 2012-11-28.  ^ "International Reaction".  ^ "Abe Lincoln's Last Card".  ^ Mitgang, Herbert (2000). Abraham Lincoln, a press portrait: his life and times from the original newspaper documents of the Union, the Confederacy, and Europe. Fordham Univ Press. ISBN 978-0-8232-2062-5.  ^ a b c d e f g h Weber, Jennifer L. (2006). Copperheads: the rise and fall of Lincoln's opponents in the North. New York, New York: Oxford University Press.  ^ Weber 2006, p. 65. ^ "The Rebel Message: What Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis
Has to Say". New York Herald. America's Historical Newspapers. Retrieved January 4, 2012.  ^ Grant, Ulysses (August 23, 1863). "Letter to Abraham Lincoln". Cairo, Illinois. Archived from the original on May 3, 2014. Retrieved May 3, 2014. I have given the subject of arming the Negro my hearty support. This, with the emancipation of the Negro, is the heaviest blow yet given the Confederacy. The South rave a greatdeel about it and profess to be very angry.  ^ Tap, Bruce (2013). The Fort Pillow Massacre: North, South, and the Status of African Americans in the Civil War Era. Routledge.  ^ McPherson, James M. (1997). For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought in the Civil War. New York City, New York. p. 107. ISBN 0-19-509-023-3. OCLC 34912692. Retrieved March 8, 2016. The Proclamation is worth three hundred thousand soldiers to our Government at least... It shows exactly what this war was brought about for and the intention of its damnable authors.  ^ McPherson, James M. (1997). For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought in the Civil War. New York City, New York. p. 108. ISBN 0-19-509-023-3. OCLC 34912692. Retrieved March 8, 2016. I know enough of the Southern spirit that I think they will fight for the institution of slavery even to extermination.  ^ McPherson, James M. (1997). For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought in the Civil War. New York City, New York. p. 108. ISBN 0-19-509-023-3. OCLC 34912692. Retrieved March 8, 2016. [N]ow is the time for Uncle to buy some negro women and children.  ^ Robert E. May (1995). "History and Mythology : The Crisis over British Intervention in the Civil War". The Union, the Confederacy, and the Atlantic rim. Purdue University Press. pp. 29–68. ISBN 978-1-55753-061-5.  ^ Mack Smith, p. 72 ^ Quoted in James Lander (2010). Lincoln and Darwin: Shared Visions of Race, Science, and Religion. Southern Illinois University Press. p. 221. ISBN 9780809329908.  ^ Kevin Phillips (2000). The Cousins' Wars: Religion, Politics, Civil Warfare, And The Triumph Of Anglo-America. p. 493. ISBN 9780465013708.  ^ Allan Nevins, Ordeal of the Union: vol 6. War Becomes Revolution, 1862–1863 (1960) ^ Guelzo 2006, p. 3. ^ Doris Kearns Goodwin, A Team of Rivals, New York: Simon & Schuster, 2005 ^ Foner, Eric (April 9, 2000). "review of Forced into Glory: Abraham Lincoln's White Dream by Lerone Bennett, Jr". Los Angeles Times Book Review. Archived from the original on 2004-10-27. Retrieved 2014-02-23.  ^ Ashraf, Kal (March 2013). "Editorial in American Studies in Britain (108: Spring 2013) iSSN 1465-9956". British Association for American Studies. Retrieved 2013-03-28.  ^ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. "Dr. Martin Luther King on the Emancipation Proclamation". National Park Service.  ^ Dr. Marin Luther King, Jr. (August 28, 1963). "I Have A Dream". The King Center.  ^ a b Peniel E. Joseph
Peniel E. Joseph
(June 10, 2013). "Kennedy's Finest Moment". The New York Times.  ^ John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
(June 11, 1963). "237 – Radio and Television Report to the American People on Civil Rights".  ^ "Remarks of Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson". May 30, 1963. Archived from the original on March 29, 2012.  ^ Lyndon B. Johnson
Lyndon B. Johnson
(March 15, 1965). "We Shall Overcome".  ^ a b " Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
Issue", Arago: people, postage & the post, Smithsonian National Postal Museum, viewed September 28, 2014 ^ "Episode Guide". tvland.com. TV Land. Archived from the original on November 13, 2013.  ^ " Barney Fife
Barney Fife
Explains The Emancipation Proclamation". Episode clip, The Andy Griffith Show. YouTube.  ^ ".5fr Centenary of the Emancipation Proclamation", Arago: people, postage & the post, Smithsonian National Postal Museum, viewed September 28, 2014

Further reading[edit]

Belz, Herman. Emancipation and Equal Rights: Politics and Constitutionalism in the Civil War Era (1978) online Biddle, Daniel R., and Murray Dubin. "'God Is Settling the Account': African American
African American
Reaction to Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation", Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography (Jan. 2013) 137#1 57–78. Crowther, Edward R. "Emancipation Proclamation". in Encyclopedia of the American Civil War. Heidler, David S. and Heidler, Jeanne T. (2000) ISBN 0-393-04758-X Chambers Jr, Henry L. "Lincoln, the Emancipation Proclamation, and Executive Power." Maryland
Law Review 73 (2013): 100+ online Ewan, Christopher. "The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
and British Public Opinion" The Historian, Vol. 67, 2005 Franklin, John Hope. The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
(1963) online Foner, Eric. The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
and American Slavery (W.W. Norton, 2010) Guelzo, Allen C. (2006). Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation: The End of Slavery
in America. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 978-0-7432-9965-7.  Guelzo, Allen C. "How Abe Lincoln Lost the Black Vote: Lincoln and Emancipation in the African American
African American
Mind", Journal of the Abraham Lincoln Association (2004) 25#1 Harold Holzer, Edna Greene Medford, and Frank J. Williams. The Emancipation Proclamation: Three Views (2006) Jones, Howard. Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
and a New Birth of Freedom: The Union and Slavery
in the Diplomacy of the Civil War (1999) online Mitch Kachun, Festivals of Freedom: Memory and Meaning in African American Emancipation Celebrations, 1808–1915 (2003) Kennon, Donald R. and Paul Finkelman, eds. Lincoln, Congress, and Emancipation ( Ohio
UP, 2016), 270 pp. Kolchin, Peter, "Reexamining Southern Emancipation in Comparative Perspective," Journal of Southern History, 81#1 (Feb. 2015), 7–40. Litwack, Leon F. Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery (1979), social history of the end of slavery in the Confederacy Mack Smith, Denis (1969). Garibaldi (Great Lives Observed). Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall.  McPherson, James M. Ordeal by Fire: the Civil War and Reconstruction (2001 [3rd ed.]), esp. pp. 316–321. Masur, Louis P. Lincoln's Hundred Days: The Emancipation Proclamation and the War for the Union (Harvard University Press; 2012) Nevins, Allan. Ordeal of the Union: vol 6. War Becomes Revolution, 1862–1863 (1960) Siddali, Silvana R. From Property To Person: Slavery
And The Confiscation Acts, 1861–1862 (2005) Syrett, John. Civil War Confiscation Acts: Failing to Reconstruct the South (2005) Tsesis, Alexander. We Shall Overcome: A History of Civil Rights and the Law (2008) * Vorenberg, Michael. Final Freedom: The Civil War, the Abolition of Slavery, and the Thirteenth Amendment (2001) Vorenberg, Michael, ed. The Emancipation Proclamation: A Brief History with Documents (2010), primary and secondary sources

Primary sources[edit]

C. Peter Ripley, Roy E. Finkenbine, Michael F. Hembree, Donald Yacovone, Witness for Freedom: African American
African American
Voices on Race, Slavery, and Emancipation (1993)

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Emancipation Proclamation.

has original text related to this article: The Emancipation Proclamation

Wikiquote has quotations related to: Emancipation Proclamation

A zoomable image of the Leland-Boker authorized edition of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
held by the British Library Lesson plan on Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
from EDSITEment NEH Text and images of the Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
from the National Archives Online Lincoln Coloring Book
for Teachers and Students Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
and related resources at the Library of Congress Scholarly article on rhetoric and the Emancipation Proclamation Mr. Lincoln and Freedom: Emancipation Proclamation First Edition Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
in 1862 Harper's Weekly Chronology of Emancipation during the Civil War American Abolitionists and Antislavery Activists, chronology of Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
and emancipation "Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation"[permanent dead link] Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
at the New York State Library – images and transcript of Lincoln's original manuscript of the preliminary proclamation The role of humor in presenting the Proclamation to Lincoln's Cabinet 1865 NY Times article - Sketch of its History by Lincoln's portrait artist  "Emancipation, Proclamation of". New International Encyclopedia. 1905.  Webcast Discussion with Pulitzer Prize-winning author James McPherson and James Cornelius, Curator of the Lincoln Collection in the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum about the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation The Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
public domain audiobook at LibriVox

v t e

Abraham Lincoln

16th President of the United States
President of the United States
(1861–1865) U.S. Representative from Illinois (1847–1849)


First inauguration

Perpetual Union Lincoln Bible

Second inauguration Civil War

Confiscation Acts President Lincoln's 75,000 volunteers War based income tax Seaports blockade RMS Trent Affair Habeas Corpus suspended Emancipation Proclamation West Virginia
statehood Overland Campaign
Overland Campaign
strategy Hampton Roads Conference Tour of Richmond Ten percent plan Reconstruction

13th Amendment abolishing slavery Dakota War of 1862

Department of the Northwest

Homestead Act of 1862 National Banking Acts Thanksgiving Day Birchard Letter Bixby letter National Academy of Sciences Department of Agriculture Pardons State of the Union Address, 1863 1864 Cabinet Judicial appointments Assassination Funeral and burial

Lincoln Catafalque


Lyceum address (1838) Peoria speech (1854) "Lost Speech" (1856) House Divided speech (1858) Lincoln-Douglas debates
Lincoln-Douglas debates
(1858) Cooper Union Address (1860) Farewell Address (1861) First inaugural address (1861) Gettysburg Address
Gettysburg Address
(1863 event) Second inaugural address (1865)

Life and views

Early life and career Black Hawk War Matson Trial Spot Resolutions Boat lifting patent Hurd v. Rock Island Bridge Co. Baltimore
Plot Lincoln's beard Medical and mental health Poetry Religious views Sexuality Slavery Fanny McCullough letter

Homes and places

Lincoln Birthplace

Knob Creek Farm

Lincoln Boyhood Memorial

Lincoln State Park

Lincoln Trail Homestead State Memorial Lincoln's New Salem Lincoln Home Lincoln Pioneer Village Little Pigeon Creek Community Cottage at the Soldier's Home Lincoln Bedroom Lincoln Sitting Room Ford's Theatre Petersen House Lincoln Tomb


Republican National Convention, 1856 1860 1864

National Union Party

United States presidential election, 1860 1864 1860 campaign song


Presidential Library and Museum Papers


Bibliography Artifacts and relics Lincoln Memorial

sculpture reflecting pool

Mount Rushmore Lincoln's Birthday Lincoln, Nebraska


Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
(Healy painting) Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
sculpture, Washington D.C. Abraham Lincoln: The Man statue

Lincoln Park

Abraham Lincoln: The Head of State statue Lincoln Trail State Memorial Lincoln the Lawyer
Lincoln the Lawyer
statue Kentucky
statue The Peacemakers
The Peacemakers
painting Lincoln Highway Other memorials Photographs Cultural depictions

films postage stamps Lincoln penny Illinois Centennial half dollar currency five-dollar bill art

Lincoln Prize Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Association White House
White House
ghost Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln Lincoln–Kennedy coincidences Aircraft Carrier USS Abraham Lincoln


Family tree Mary Todd Lincoln
Mary Todd Lincoln
(wife) Robert Todd Lincoln
Robert Todd Lincoln
(son) Edward Baker Lincoln (son) William Wallace Lincoln
William Wallace Lincoln
(son) Thomas "Tad" Lincoln (son) Mary Todd "Mamie" Lincoln (granddaughter) Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
II (grandson) Jessie Lincoln (granddaughter) Thomas Lincoln
Thomas Lincoln
(father) Nancy Hanks Lincoln (mother) Sarah Bush Lincoln
Sarah Bush Lincoln
(stepmother) Sarah Lincoln Grigsby
Sarah Lincoln Grigsby
(sister) Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
(paternal grandfather) Mordecai Lincoln (paternal uncle) Mary Lincoln Crume (paternal aunt) John Hanks
John Hanks
(maternal cousin) Joseph Hanks
Joseph Hanks
(great-grandfather) Samuel Lincoln
Samuel Lincoln
(17th-century ancestor) Mary Lincoln Beckwith (great-granddaughter) Robert Todd Lincoln
Robert Todd Lincoln
Beckwith (great-grandson) Timothy Lincoln Beckwith (great-great-grandson) Old Bob
Old Bob

← James Buchanan Andrew Johnson
Andrew Johnson

Book Category Outline

v t e

American Civil War


Origins Issues

Timeline leading to the War Antebellum era Bleeding Kansas Border states Compromise of 1850 Dred Scott v. Sandford Lincoln-Douglas debates Missouri
Compromise Popular sovereignty Secession States' rights President Lincoln's 75,000 volunteers


African Americans Cornerstone Speech Emancipation Proclamation Fugitive slave laws Plantations in the American South Slave Power Slavery
in the United States Treatment of slaves in the United States Uncle Tom's Cabin


Susan B. Anthony John Brown Frederick Douglass William Lloyd Garrison Elijah Parish Lovejoy J. Sella Martin Lysander Spooner George Luther Stearns Thaddeus Stevens Charles Sumner Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad

Combatants Theaters Campaigns Battles States


Union (USA)

Army Navy Marine Corps Revenue Cutter Service

Confederacy (CSA)

Army Navy Marine Corps


Eastern Western Lower Seaboard Trans-Mississippi Pacific Coast Union naval blockade

Major Campaigns

Anaconda Plan Blockade runners New Mexico Jackson's Valley Peninsula Northern Virginia Maryland Stones River Vicksburg Tullahoma Gettysburg Morgan's Raid Bristoe Knoxville Red River Overland Atlanta Valley 1864 Bermuda Hundred Richmond-Petersburg Franklin–Nashville Price's Raid Sherman's March Carolinas Appomattox

Major battles

Fort Sumter 1st Bull Run Wilson's Creek Fort Donelson Pea Ridge Hampton Roads Shiloh New Orleans Corinth Seven Pines Seven Days 2nd Bull Run Antietam Perryville Fredericksburg Stones River Chancellorsville Gettysburg Vicksburg Chickamauga Chattanooga Wilderness Spotsylvania Cold Harbor Atlanta Mobile Bay Franklin Nashville Five Forks

Involvement (by  state or territory)





R. H. Anderson Beauregard Bragg Buchanan Cooper Early Ewell Forrest Gorgas Hill Hood Jackson A. S. Johnston J. E. Johnston Lee Longstreet Morgan Mosby Price Semmes E. K. Smith Stuart Taylor Wheeler


Benjamin Bocock Breckinridge Davis Hunter Mallory Memminger Seddon Stephens



Anderson Buell Burnside Butler Du Pont Farragut Foote Frémont Grant Halleck Hooker Hunt McClellan McDowell Meade Meigs Ord Pope D. D. Porter Rosecrans Scott Sheridan Sherman Thomas


Adams Chase Ericsson Hamlin Lincoln Pinkerton Seward Stanton Stevens Wade Welles


U.S. Constitution

Reconstruction amendments

13th Amendment 14th Amendment 15th Amendment


Alabama Claims Brooks–Baxter War Carpetbaggers Colfax Riot of 1873 Eufaula Riot of 1874 Freedmen's Bureau Freedman's Savings Bank Impeachment of Andrew Johnson Kirk-Holden War Knights of the White Camelia Ku Klux Klan Memphis Riot of 1866 Meridian Riot of 1871 New Orleans
New Orleans
Riot of 1866 Pulaski (Tennessee) Riot of 1867 Reconstruction acts

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Reconstruction treaties

Indian Council at Fort Smith

Red Shirts Redeemers Confederate refugees


Scalawags South Carolina riots of 1876 Southern Claims Commission Homestead acts

Southern Homestead Act of 1866 Timber Culture Act
Timber Culture Act
of 1873

White League



Centennial Civil War Discovery Trail Civil War Roundtables Civil War Trails Program Civil War Trust Confederate History Month Confederate monuments and memorials Historical reenactment Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee


Black Codes Jim Crow

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Monuments and memorials


List of Union Civil War monuments and memorials List of memorials to the Grand Army of the Republic Memorials to Abraham Lincoln


List of Confederate monuments and memorials Removal of Confederate monuments and memorials List of memorials to Robert E. Lee List of memorials to Jefferson Davis Annapolis

Roger B. Taney Monument


Confederate Soldiers and Sailors Monument Confederate Women's Monument Roger B. Taney Monument Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee
and Stonewall Jackson
Stonewall Jackson

Durham, North Carolina

Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee

New Orleans

Battle of Liberty Place Monument Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis
Monument General Beauregard Equestrian Statue Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee


Confederate Memorial Day Ladies' memorial associations U.S. Memorial Day U.S. national cemeteries


1913 Gettysburg Reunion Confederate Veteran Grand Army of the Republic Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the U.S. Old soldiers' homes Southern Cross of Honor United Confederate Veterans

Related topics

Related topics


Arms Campaign Medal Cavalry Confederate Home Guard Confederate railroads Confederate Revolving Cannon Field artillery Medal of Honor recipients Medicine Leadership Naval battles Official Records Partisan rangers POW camps Rations Signal Corps Turning point Union corps badges U.S. Balloon Corps U.S. Home Guard U.S. Military Railroad


Committee on the Conduct of the War Confederate States Presidential Election of 1861 Confiscation Act of 1861 Confiscation Act of 1862 Copperheads Emancipation Proclamation Habeas Corpus Act of 1863 Hampton Roads Conference National Union Party Radical Republicans Trent Affair Union leagues U.S. Presidential Election of 1864 War Democrats

Other topics

Bibliography Confederate war finance

Confederate States dollar


Confederate Secret Service

Great Revival of 1863 Music Naming the war Native Americans

Cherokee Choctaw

New York City Gold Hoax of 1864 New York City Riot of 1863 Photographers Richmond Riot of 1863 Sexuality Supreme Court cases Tokens U.S. Sanitary Commission

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 184298564 LCCN: n84017