In recent times, people argue that the slaves were not freed by President Lincoln, but rather they freed themselves. The slaves did play a key role in attaining their freedom, it would have been impossible without Lincoln. Many people are also saying that Lincoln was not directly trying to free the slaves, and this is somewhat true. His prime concern was to keep the union together, but he believed that freeing the slaves was necessary and, inevitable stop.
The Emancipation Proclamation had an essential part in freeing the slaves. Because, not only did it say that the slaves were legally free, but it also made the foreign powers such as Britain think twice about becoming allies with the Confederates. The Confederates offered vast trading opportunities to Britain, as the south had become the largest supplier of cotton on the world. And Britain, in return could offer aid to them in the civil war to help defeat the Union.
But when the Emancipation Proclamation was released, it changed the views on the war. Before it had been the states verses the federal government. But now, it was as if they were fighting for slavery. And Britain, who had done away with slavery long ago, backed out.
The way that the slaves may have freed themselves is that the federal borders were already there. Historians are arguing that the slaves were already freeing themselves, even before the civil war began. With the federal borders in place, it defined what were the slave states and the free states. With that in mind, the slaves were freeing themselves by fleeing their homes and going north into the free states. Thus they were no longer slaves and become free, and had freed themselves.
A reason that other historians would disagree is because of the...