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Freedom National: The Destruction of Slavery in the United States, 1861-1865

Oakes, James

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A powerful history of emancipation that reshapes our understanding of Lincoln, the Civil War, and the end of American slavery.

Freedom National is a groundbreaking history of emancipation that joins the political initiatives of Lincoln and the Republicans in Congress with the courageous actions of Union soldiers and runaway slaves in the South. It shatters the widespread conviction that the Civil War was first and foremost a war to restore the Union and only gradually, when it became a military necessity, a war to end slavery. These two aims?"Liberty and Union, one and inseparable"?were intertwined in Republican policy from the very start of the war.

By summer 1861 the federal government invoked military authority to begin freeing slaves, immediately and without slaveholder compensation, as they fled to Union lines in the disloyal South. In the loyal Border States the Republicans tried coaxing officials into gradual abolition with promises of compensation and the colonization abroad of freed blacks. James Oakes shows that Lincoln’s landmark 1863 proclamation marked neither the beginning nor the end of emancipation: it triggered a more aggressive phase of military emancipation, sending Union soldiers onto plantations to entice slaves away and enlist the men in the army. But slavery proved deeply entrenched, with slaveholders determined to re-enslave freedmen left behind the shifting Union lines. Lincoln feared that the war could end in Union victory with slavery still intact. The Thirteenth Amendment that so succinctly abolished slavery was no formality: it was the final act in a saga of immense war, social upheaval, and determined political leadership.

Fresh and compelling, this magisterial history offers a new understanding of the death of slavery and the rebirth of a nation.

8 pages illustrations

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About the Author:

James Oakes is a Distinguished Professor of History and Graduate School Humanities Professor at the City University of New York Graduate Center. He is the author of several acclaimed works on the South and the Civil War, including The Radical and the Republican and Freedom National, both winners of the Lincoln Prize. He and his family live in New York City.

About the Author:

James Oakes is the author of several acclaimed books on slavery and the Civil War. His history of emancipation, Freedom National, won the Lincoln Prize and was longlisted for the National Book Award. He is Distinguished Professor of History and Graduate School Humanities Professor at the Graduate Center, CUNY.

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Oakes, James Author
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ISBN 10: 0393065316 ISBN 13: 9780393065312
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Book Description Norton. 1 Cloth(s), 2013. hard. Book Condition: New. (Winner of the 2013 Lincoln Prize and nominated for the National Book Award) Also the author of the 2008 Lincoln Prize winner The Radical and the Republican: Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, and the Triumph of Antislavery Politics, James Oakes here offers a groundbreaking history of emancipation. Intertwining the political initiatives of Lincoln and the Republicans in Congress with the courageous actions of Union soldiers and runaway slaves in the South, Oakes shatters the myth that the fight to end slavery was an expedient afterthought in a Civil War whose only goal was to restore the Union. He argues convincingly that "Liberty and Union, one and inseparable" was the Republican policy from the very start of the war."Brilliant in analysis and compelling in argument, this is now the book to read on how slavery died."—Library Journal"Freedom National provides the best account we have of the process of emancipation and the ultimate abolition of slavery, on the ground in the South and in the halls of power at Washington. It also makes clear that from the beginning, nearly all participants recognized that the central issue of the war was slavery and that its likely outcome was a new birth of freedom."—James M. McPherson 595. Bookseller Inventory # 50423

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Book Description WW Norton Co, United States, 2013. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. 236 x 163 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Freedom National is a groundbreaking history of emancipation that joins the political initiatives of Lincoln and the Republicans in Congress with the courageous actions of Union soldiers and runaway slaves in the South. It shatters the widespread conviction that the Civil War was first and foremost a war to restore the Union and only gradually, when it became a military necessity, a war to end slavery. These two aims- Liberty and Union, one and inseparable -were intertwined in Republican policy from the very start of the war. By summer 1861 the federal government invoked military authority to begin freeing slaves, immediately and without slaveholder compensation, as they fled to Union lines in the disloyal South. In the loyal Border States the Republicans tried coaxing officials into gradual abolition with promises of compensation and the colonization abroad of freed blacks. James Oakes shows that Lincoln s landmark 1863 proclamation marked neither the beginning nor the end of emancipation: it triggered a more aggressive phase of military emancipation, sending Union soldiers onto plantations to entice slaves away and enlist the men in the army. But slavery proved deeply entrenched, with slaveholders determined to re-enslave freedmen left behind the shifting Union lines. Lincoln feared that the war could end in Union victory with slavery still intact. The Thirteenth Amendment that so succinctly abolished slavery was no formality: it was the final act in a saga of immense war, social upheaval, and determined political leadership. Fresh and compelling, this magisterial history offers a new understanding of the death of slavery and the rebirth of a nation. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780393065312

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Book Description WW Norton Co, United States, 2013. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. 236 x 163 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Freedom National is a groundbreaking history of emancipation that joins the political initiatives of Lincoln and the Republicans in Congress with the courageous actions of Union soldiers and runaway slaves in the South. It shatters the widespread conviction that the Civil War was first and foremost a war to restore the Union and only gradually, when it became a military necessity, a war to end slavery. These two aims- Liberty and Union, one and inseparable -were intertwined in Republican policy from the very start of the war. By summer 1861 the federal government invoked military authority to begin freeing slaves, immediately and without slaveholder compensation, as they fled to Union lines in the disloyal South. In the loyal Border States the Republicans tried coaxing officials into gradual abolition with promises of compensation and the colonization abroad of freed blacks. James Oakes shows that Lincoln s landmark 1863 proclamation marked neither the beginning nor the end of emancipation: it triggered a more aggressive phase of military emancipation, sending Union soldiers onto plantations to entice slaves away and enlist the men in the army. But slavery proved deeply entrenched, with slaveholders determined to re-enslave freedmen left behind the shifting Union lines. Lincoln feared that the war could end in Union victory with slavery still intact. The Thirteenth Amendment that so succinctly abolished slavery was no formality: it was the final act in a saga of immense war, social upheaval, and determined political leadership. Fresh and compelling, this magisterial history offers a new understanding of the death of slavery and the rebirth of a nation. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780393065312

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