Emancipation Proclamation There is much discussion about Lincoln's order abolishing slavery in the states "in rebellion". Though the Emancipation Proclamation did not free any slaves right out nor make any drastic changes it was a very necessary, very big step taken. Lincoln began an essential phase that the country had to get through in order for slavery to ever be abolished. Even though the Emancipation Proclamation was very important not much freedom truly occurred.
Lincoln's famous document actually freed no slaves. The Proclamation applied only to slavery in rebellious areas. Not only did this mean Lincoln had no power to enforce emancipation in these states still in control by the Confederacy, but the four slave states still under federal control were exempt from the Proclamation. The Emancipation Proclamation was nothing more then a war measure. It was part of Lincoln's strategy and was politically necessary. Unfortunately, the Proclamation was only partially successful for Lincoln.
Lincoln had hoped to regain military initiative, political momentum, and diplomatic superiority all with the Emancipation Proclamation. It did somewhat regain military initiative with such generals as Grant's help. It also did assist in gaining the favor of British abolitionists whom stepped up their efforts against recognition of the Confederacy.
The Emancipation Proclamation made clear, once again, what Lincoln had stuck by throughout the war. He repeatedly asserted that the Union's objective in the Civil War was nothing more than ending a rebellion against constitutional authority. The abolishment of slavery was to have no part in the role of the conflict. The truth is the Proclamation wasn't meant to set any slaves free. In all essence, if the southerners withdrew from the Confederacy within the time they were given, their slaves would not have been set free because the Emancipation Proclamation only applied to "any...