Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation

Today is the 149th anniversary of the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. See Brooks Simpson’s post on the subject at his blog “Crossroads,”  It hardly goes without saying that the Preliminary EP was not universally positively received at the time of its issuance, or in subsequent years. Notice that in this image from 1864 and that Lincoln sits with his foot on the Constitution, and a devil, no doubt inspiring this dastardly deed, sits on his desk looking on. Also, a statue of Lady Liberty in the background is hooded, Simpson suggests that we consider the Preliminary EP in the context of Reconstruction, and the hooded figure of Lady Liberty particularly lends itself, ironically, to such a view, though certain “Confederate Romantics” toiling away out there on internet CW discussion groups may not agree with this perspective. The caricature is by the Bavarian, who, unusual for a German immigrant supported the Confederacy. Adalbert Volk. Volk was a cartoonist, a dentist, smuggled supplies for the Confederacy, and personally assisted Confederate President Jefferson Davis.


About marcferguson

I teach history, including the American Civil War Era, as an Adjunct at American International College in Springfield, Ma. I also teach survey courses in U.S. history, Western Civilization, and World History, and have taught at other area colleges, including the University of Massachusetts/Amherst, and Holyoke Community College. While my academic background is in European History, my interest in the American Civil War began about a decade ago. Other areas of interest include Modernism, 20th century World Thought and Culture, The Rise of the West after 1400, 19th c. American Society and Culture, Central and Eastern European History and Culture, and Local History. I have in recent years cut back my teaching drastically in order to devote more time raising my kids (15 year old twins now), including working part-time at their elementary/middle school for the past 6 years, they are now launched and off to High School, and I plan to crank up my involvement in teaching history and local history projects, particularly in light of the American Civil War Sesquicentennial.
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