Emancipation and Reconstruction

Essay by noneuHigh School, 11th gradeA, November 2004

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The introduction of the book Emancipation and Reconstruction outlined the ideas and concepts in which the book later discusses. It suggested that Abraham Lincoln had already begun two projects before his assassination, which are stated in the title, "the emancipation of the slaves and the reconstruction of the defeated southern states." The introduction also explained the perplexity of the two aforementioned projects and that the outcomes of such involved a great deal of events and depended on numerous individuals that no blame could be focused towards one person alone. The assessments of the projects could not be put under the category of the words success or failure, but instead analyzed and interpreted. Therefore the author, Michael Perman, explained that Reconstruction and Emancipation had the greatest impact on American society and in that collectively were the most sever alterations not only on the government but on citizens and people living in America as well; in history.

In the beginning of the first chapter, Perman brought up the fact that in order to appease southerners, Lincoln repeatedly guaranteed them that in states where slavery was already enacted, the government would not tamper with the slavery issue and that the laws made by the union on slavery would not have an impact on the Deep South. Perman's mentioning of Lincoln's promise emphasizes the build up to North-South conflicts, for the promise was no kept. The book then discussed that after the slaves were freed, too many of them flocked to Union lines, and therefore Lincoln began an experiment of Free Black Labor. The slavers were forcibly put back on plantations but had no desire to work, they were missing a motive and technically they were freed and could not be forced to work for free. The government then offered them wages that repelled...