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Act of Justice – Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation and the Law of War - Kentucky Scholarship Online
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Act of Justice: Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation and the Law of War

Burrus M. Carnahan


In his first inaugural address, Abraham Lincoln declared that as president he would “have no lawful right” to interfere with the institution of slavery. Yet less than two years later, he issued a proclamation intended to free all slaves throughout the Confederate states. When critics challenged the constitutional soundness of the act, Lincoln asserted that he was endowed “with the law of war in time of war”. This book contends Lincoln was no reluctant emancipator; he wrote a truly radical document that treated Confederate slaves as an oppressed people rather than merely as enemy property. In t ... More

Keywords: Abraham Lincoln, slavery, Confederate states, slaves, warfare, inaugural address, president

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2007 Print ISBN-13: 9780813124636
Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011 DOI:10.5810/kentucky/9780813124636.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Burrus M. Carnahan, author