Effectiveness Of Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation

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Abraham Lincoln’s emancipation proclamation, issued on the 1st of January 1863, was a presidential declaration that intended to abolish slavery. The counter argument may be stated that Lincoln’s proclamation was merely a war measure that only ended slavery in certain areas in order to ensure victory for the North. However, the emancipation proclamation marked the beginning of the end of the institution of slavery thus it was a success. Argument: Abraham Lincoln refers to his proclamation as "the central act of my administration, and the greatest event of the 19th century." (Source B2) Lincoln’s proclamation was one of strategy as it aimed to abolish slavery as well as recruit those previously enslaved to help the North win the civil war. The freeing of slaves would also result in the weakening of the South’s economy since “The South’s economy was based on slavery.” (Source A). Thus the South’s ability to effectively wage a war against the Union North would have been depleted and the slaves in those areas would be freed from years of slavery, both being a dual victory for Lincoln. “Slaves, as the property of individuals and businesses, represented the largest portion of the region’s personal and corporate wealth, as cotton and land prices declined and the price of slaves soared.” (Source H). Slavery was becoming a growing concern in the initial stages of the war and Lincoln soon realized that by ending slavery he could help end the Civil war.
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