Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2000

Department 1

Civil War Era Studies

Department 2



It has always been one of the ironies of the era of the Civil War and the end of slavery in the United States that the man who played the role of Great Emancipator of the slaves was so hugely mistrusted and so energetically vilified by the party of abolition. Abraham Lincoln, whatever his larger reputation as the liberator of more than three million black slaves in the Emancipation Proclamation, has never entirely shaken off the reputation of being something of a half-heart about it. [excerpt]