Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation by William K. Klingaman

By William K. Klingaman

The Emancipation Proclamation ceaselessly replaced the process American heritage. In Abraham Lincoln and the line to Emancipation, William Klingaman presents a much-needed well known historical past of the making of the Emancipation Proclamation and its next effect on race kinfolk in America.

In the culture of Garry Wills's award-winning Lincoln at Gettysburg, Klingaman reconstructs the occasions that ended in Lincoln's momentous selection. he is taking us from Lincoln's inauguration throughout the outbreak of the Civil struggle and the Confederates' early army victories. regardless of the Abolitionists' urging, Lincoln used to be reluctant to factor an edict liberating the slaves lest it alienate unswerving border states. A succession of army reverses led Lincoln to aim to acquire congressional approval of sluggish, compensated emancipation. but if all his plans failed, Lincoln eventually begun drafting an emancipation proclamation as an army weapon-what he defined as his "last card" opposed to the rebellion.

Finally issued on January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation didn't finish the war-or slavery-overnight, and Klingaman follows the tale via extra years of bloody battle ahead of ultimate Union victory and Lincoln's tragic assassination. The publication concludes with a quick dialogue of ways the Emancipation Proclamation-its language and the conditions within which it was once issued-have formed American heritage.

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He paused for a moment to allow the audience to take in the full meaning of his pledge. ” Buchanan, on the other hand, seemed to have drifted off. For most of the address, the outgoing president occupied himself by squinting with his one good eye squarely at the toe of his right boot. To conciliate the South, Lincoln even agreed not to send federal officials (other than revenue collectors) into states where the citizens appeared to be unusually hostile to the national government. ” Nowhere, however, did Lincoln describe how he intended to carry out his pledge to collect import duties or hold the two remaining federal forts in the South without the use of force.

Many in the crowd 26 I N A U G U R AT I O N D AY: M A R C H 4 , 1 8 6 1 had never seen the incoming president. Their initial reaction was surprise that Lincoln was not as ugly as rumored. So many stories had circulated about Lincoln’s unprepossessing appearance that observers typically were startled to find that he was not the “original orang-otang” or uncouth yokel portrayed in Democratic campaign propaganda. ”) It was true that Lincoln was a westerner who moved awkwardly and appeared ill at ease on formal occasions.

Lincoln and Buchanan left the Capitol together and rode back to the White House in the presidential carriage. The rest of the inaugural procession marched behind them, at times nearly lost to sight in the thick yellow dust kicked up by the carriage and the cavalry mounts alongside it. Along Pennsylvania Avenue, the crowd cheered with more exuberance than it had displayed all day. When the carriage reached the Executive Mansion, Lincoln invited his predecessor to spend the night as his guest, 33 A B R A H A M L I N C O L N A N D T H E R O A D T O E M A N C I PAT I O N but Buchanan demurred.

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