Abraham Lincoln's Views On Slavery

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Lincoln & Slavery Lincoln’s views on slavery were complex and sometimes contradictory. He opposed slavery and felt that slavery was morally wrong, yet he was not an abolitionist and did not make decisions to enforce the immediate end to slavery or to incorporate slaves as equal members of society (A&E Television Networks, LLC, 1996-2014). His highest priority at the time was to save the Union believing that it should not be divided by the slavery issue and although he did not approve of slavery, he did not necessarily want it abolished either (Schaefer, 1997). Lincoln had a difficult time figuring out how to handle the slavery issue politically, stay true to the Constitution, and appease both the north and south; all while keeping the Union intact, which was his highest priority. Prior to the Civil War, Lincoln did not want slavery to be allowed in western expansion efforts and although he opposed slavery, he thought it should remain in the southern states where it was already established and had a strong foothold. Because it would…show more content…
This proclamation declared that unless Confederate States returned to the Union by January 1, 1863, he would declare their slaves to be considered “forever free” (Independence Hall Association, 2008-2014). Unfortunately, this offer of freedom for slaves did not include Border States and only applied to the Confederate States. Lincoln had hoped that this would be a way to shorten the war by reducing the South’s resources and reduce their strength during the war (Independence Hall Association, 2008-2014). Although the Emancipation Proclamation did not free all slaves, it did lead to the ratification to the Constitution with the 13th Amendment which “formally abolished slavery throughout the land” (Independence Hall Association,
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