President Lincoln Committed to Emancipation Proclamation

December 20, 1863

President Lincoln writes Bostonian Henry Wright: “I shall not attempt to retract or modify the emancipation proclamation; nor shall I return to slavery any person who is free by the terms of that proclamation, or by any of the acts of Congress.” The anti-slavery activist had written Lincoln: “ I want nothing of you—you can do nothing for me—except—this one favor . . . that you will write for me, & subscribe your name to it—with your own hand—this sentence in your late Message – i.e. `I shall not attempt to retract or modify the emancipation proclamation; nor shall I return to slavery any person, who is free by the terms of the proclamation, or by any of the acts of Congress.’” Wright, an associate of Wendell Phillips, wrote: “I have given 30 years of my life to the Abolition of slavery—by lecturing, by public & private discussions, & by scattering, broad cast, tracts & pamphlets bearing on that subject. I regard the American Republic as the God-appointed Messiah of Liberty to the great family of Nations.”

In New York City, noted Lincoln biographer John Waugh, two anti-Lincoln journalists employed by the New York World “produced a seventy-two-page pamphlet that went on sale on newsstands in New York City just before Christmas 1863.   It sold for twenty-five cents a copy, and was titled Miscegenation: The Theory of the blending of the Races, Applied to the White Man and the Negro.  The subtitle was crucial, for without that nobody had any idea what the new word meant….     “Croly and Wakeman mailed the pamphlet widely to abolitionist leaders and reformers.  From everything it said, all who read it assumed it was a philippic from the pen of a fire-eating abolitionist, quite likely a miscegenationist himself.”

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Published in: on December 20, 2013 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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