The Emancipation Proclamation
The first mention of abolishing slavery was made on July 21, 1862, when President Lincoln brought it up in what has come to be known as the Emancipation Proclamation. While Secretary of State William H. Seward had told him to wait for a victory in the Civil War before issuing this proclamation, Lincoln paid no attention to him. Instead, Lincoln went ahead and made his point.
In September of 1862, the Battle of Antietam provided backing of this proclamation - as did the War Governor’s Conference. So, when Lincoln finally delivered the Emancipation Proclamation on September 22, 1862, he also encouraged the Border States to accept this proclamation in order to save the Union. Nevertheless, the issue of slavery led to the Civil War.
The final Emancipation Proclamation was delivered on January 1, 1863. Herein, Lincoln explained that he truly believed that nothing was more wrong than slavery. He also admitted that he didn’t understand how just because he was the president he could judge others. This power actually only included the territory that was controlled by the Confederates at that time. Nevertheless, the Emancipation Proclamation did grow to symbolize a commitment to emancipation from the Union, whom they felt were putting an end to their freedom.