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To what extent can it be argued that the issuing of the Emancipation proclamation was purely a military expedient

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Introduction

To what extent can it be argued that the issuing of the Emancipation proclamation was purely a military expedient? When Lincoln came to power in the USA straight away it caused controversy in America between the industrialised north and the slave trade south. The south were afraid that Lincoln would free all the slaves and make the south industrialise like the north because of Lincolns personal beliefs about slavery. Therefore the southern states succeeded from the rest of America. On January 1st 1863 the emancipation proclamation was read out by Lincoln it stated that all slaves in states which were still in rebellion on January 1, 1863 shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free. This caused uproar in America There are many reasons suggested by many different historians to why did Lincoln issue the emancipation proclamation. In this essay I will discuss if the emancipation proclamation was purely a military expedient or whether there were other causes. I do agree that the issuing of the Emancipation Proclamation was purely a military expedient and I would argue that it is not wrong for Lincoln to use military reasons to justify a decision, military necessity does not detract from the emancipation proclamation and presidents have to talk about a bigger picture of the overall country. Therefore I do agree that the emancipation proclamation was purely a military expedient. ...read more.

Middle

When the civil war began in America the Republican Party was very divided over the war, the abolitionists within the Republican Party had been constantly tearing it apart over the slavery issue, therefore if Lincoln made this civil war about ending slavery as this was a great chance to do so, then it would ensure that Lincoln would maintain the integrity of his party also securing his own position within the party. 'foremost was the consideration that slavery had caused the great rebellion. It had also poisoned political life for more than thirty years. The only way of making sure that it would never wreak such mischief again was to destroy it. Lincoln no longer had any doubt that it was a legitimate aim of the war to remove the cause of the war'11. He would become very popular with the Republicans in his party and gain more votes so therefore stay in power. Also with Lincoln upsetting the south by having the civil war with them he obviously was not going to get there votes, therefore if he freed the blacks and slaves then the ex- slaves and the blacks would vote for him later on, whenever they would be given the opportunity to do so. Therefore it is very possible to see that Lincoln introducing the emancipation proclamation was a lot to do with political reasons and gaining more power in parliament and resolving the myriad of political problems both he and his country faced. ...read more.

Conclusion

So although at first the emancipation was in my opinion issued for a military reason, the fact that later on it was issued for all slaves suggests that the reasons above which I have studied also played a major role in his decision to emancipate all the slaves in America! It seems ultimately that the Emancipation Proclamation was a fusion of a number of issues. Part social concern, part political ambition and part military necessity. At varying points in the conflict the most important motive altered slightly, however the overriding concern does seem to be with the war. Word count : 2, 267 1 http://unix2.nysed.gov/library/features/ep/ 2 http://unix2.nysed.gov/library/features/ep/ 3 the emancipation proclamation John Hope Franklin pg119 4 the emancipation proclamation John Hope Franklin pg 119 5 Hugh Brogan The Penguin history of the USA pg 332 6 the emancipation proclamation John hope Franklin pg 84 7 the emancipation proclamation John Hope Franklin pg 84 8 the war about slavery 861-5 page 338 9 A new birth of freedom Abraham Lincoln and the coming of the civil war Harry v. Jaffa 10 the war about slavery 1861-5 page 333 11 war about slavery 1861-5 page 337 12 the war about slavery 1861-5 page 329 13 The war about slavery 1861-5 14 The War about slavery 1861-5 page 333 15 The war about slavery 1861-5 page 333 16 The War about slavery 1861-5 page 337 1 ...read more.

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