[Marxism] McPherson on the Emancipation Proclamation

Mark Lause markalause at gmail.com
Wed Dec 12 07:03:24 MST 2012

James Livingston's response to the movie is here

What I would add to McPherson is that the implimentation of
emancipation on the ground always happened at various paces.  The
Fifth Kansas Cavalry began implimenting an emancipationist policy from
the start of the war--and in Missouri, where Lincoln's emancipation
proclamation wasn't supposed to apply.

What actually measure the response of the Lincoln administration to
Emancipationist projects was what they did and didn't do to prevent
overreaching by the Union forces.  Most of the efforts to stop it came
from conservatives like McClellan or Rosecrans and the brakes on those
efforts to stop emancipation came from Washington.  In the case of the
Fifth Kansas Cavalry, the regulars placed the officers under arrest,
but, after several months confinement to base, they received
promotions and went on to raise one of the first black regiments of
the war.  In the process, they petititoned--and got--a War Department
order for the army to commission black officers, though the army
higher-ups chose to ignore that.

These things happened throughout the army, usually in alliance with
abolitionists on the home front.


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