Essay on President Abraham Lincoln And The Emancipation Proclamation

1874 Words May 31st, 2016 8 Pages
On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed into effect the Emancipation Proclamation, the immortal document that ended the tragedy of American slavery forever. This legislation allowed America to finally live out its traditional values of liberty and equality for all and signalled the apex of forward movement and social mobility in the U.S. Once the Civil War had come to a close in May 1865, the terms of the Emancipation Proclamation finally revealed themselves fully to all Americans. Southern society, particularly the economy, was annihilated after slaves, the main source of labor in the South, had been relinquished from their duties on Southern plantations. This destruction of the South brought about the question of how the South could be brought back into the Union and what the proper punishment was for Southern treason. President Lincoln favored a policy of amnesty and the swift readmittance of the South into the Union, including the 10% Plan. However, another group among the Republicans, the Radicals, believed in harsh punishment of the South for its abandoning the Union and allowing slavery to divide the nation. The Radicals were mainly made up of Northern whites and believed firmly in putting blacks and whites on an equal basis in the U.S. The Radicals were highly favored among those living in the North and West, but were despised by Southern whites because of their main platform and ideology of equality for blacks and whites. The competing ideals…

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