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HIST221 African-American History before 1877

Published : 06-Oct,2021  |  Views : 10


1.How successful was Reconstruction? What measures were created to assist the Freedmen? Give examples of how the ex-slave society tried to stop the advancement of African Americans after the Civil War.

2.Today the Emancipation Proclamation is one of the most cherished and celebrated documents from the history of the United States? Define the Emancipation Proclamation and discuss its significance during the era? Why did Lincoln propose this measure and what was its effect on society?


The emancipation proclamation was an executive order by the American President Abraham Lincoln in January 1, 1863. Most of the Republicans were convinced that the struggle against the slaveholders’ revolt must become a confrontation against the concept of slavery itself. This was the reason these people were putting pressure on the President to proclaim an emancipation policy to free the slaves. However, Lincoln felt forced to balance the convictions because he did not want to lose support from the republicans. In this proclamation, he justified his intention to cripple the confederacy of the slaveholders in the southern states.

The inhuman treatment of the African-American slaves as personal property had a moral aspect which created the base for all these initiations. The aim of the proclamation was to change the federal legal status of the 3 million slaves to be free from bondage. The idea was that these free slaves would join the newly formed Union army and fight against the confederacy during American Civil war (Gaffey, 2013). The Union also gained advantage over the southern confederacy as they had support from the slaved for providing food for the Union Army. Despite the fact that Lincoln faced criticism from his cabinet who explained the emancipation proclamation for being too radical but to the president this proclamation was necessary to demonstrate the justice as well as the supremacy of the President. The cabinet also wanted to hold back the enforcement of the proclamation until the victory of the Union so that there was no problem regarding implementation.

According to Whitney (2015), Lincoln’s goal was to abolish slavery by issuing the Proclamation and on the other hand, unification of the whole country. On December 6, 1865 the Civil War ended and slavery was obliterated. This was the influence of the emancipation Proclamation. Eventually it helped in solidifying the American Dream and everyone was granted equal with having equal opportunities.


Gaffey, A. J. (2013). Emancipating Lincoln: The Proclamation in Text, Context, and Memory by Harold Holzer. Rhetoric & Public Affairs, 16(4), 793-795.

Whitney, S. G. (2015). edged a constitutional protection of slave property that is not lightly abridged, at the same time that it proclaimed the injustice of slavery, transformed the character of the Civil War, and foreshadowed the Thirteenth Amendment. The Encyclopedia of Civil Liberties in America, 313.

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