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struggled being already gone, we now choose to go with the Southern section. To deprive them of this hope, substantially ends the rebellion; and the initiation of emancipation completely deprives them of it, as to all the States initiating it. Tlie point is not that all the States tolerating slavery would very soon, if at all, initiate emancipation; but that, while the offer is equally made to all, the more Northern shall, by such initiation, make it certain to the more Southern, that in no event will the former ever join the latter in their proposed Confederacy. I say 'initiation, because, in my judgment, gradual, and not sudden emancipation is better for all. In the mere financial or pecuniary view, any member of Congress, with the census tables and treasury reports before him, can readily see for himself, how very soon the current expenditures of this war would purchase, at fair valuation, all the slaves in any named State. Such a proposition, on the part of the General Government, sets up no claim of a right by Federal authority to interfere with slavery within State limits, referring, as it does, the absolute control of the subject in each case, to the State and its people immediately interested. It is proposed as a matter of perfectly free choice with them.

“In the annual message last December, I thought fit to say "the Union must be preserved ; and hence all indispensable means must be employed.' I said this, not hastily, but deliberately. War has been made, and continues to be an indispensable means to this end. A practical re-acknowledgment of the National authority would render the war unnecessary, and it would at once cease. If, however, resistance continues, the war must continue; and it is impossible to foresee all the incidents which may attend, and all the ruin which may follow it. Such as may seem indispensable or may obviously promise great efficiency towards ending the struggle, must, and will come.

“ The proposition now made, though an offer only, I hope it may be (steemed no offence to ask whether the pecuniary consideration tendercd would not be of more value to the States, and private persons concerned than are the institution and property in it, in the present aspect of affairs?

“While it is true that the adoption of the proposed resolution would be merely initiatory, and not, within itself a practical measure, it is recommended in the hope, that it would soon lead to important practical results: In full view of my great responsibility to my God, and to my country, I earnestly beg the attention of Congress and the people to the subject.


Mr. Lincoln was agitating the alternative of immediate and unconditional emancipation, by his own proclamation, or gradual and compensated emancipation as proposed in the foregoing message. He determined to submit the subject to Congress and the border slave States, with the sincere hope, that the latter would be accepted.

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IT is clear, from several paragraphs in the President's mes

, question occupied Mr. Lincoln's most anxious thoughts, and that he was considering the subject of emancipation under military authority, and as a military necessity. He alludes to a paragraph in his annual message which declared “ that the Union must be preserved, and hence all indispensable means must be employed. I said this not hastily but deliberately. If resistance continues, the war must continue; and it is impossible to foresee all the incidents which may attend it. Such as may seem indispensable or may obviously promise great efficiency toward ending the struggle must and will come.

In these somewhat ambiguous paragraphs we now know that he alluded to the great proclamation of emancipation. It is clear that he considered this great question primarily, as it affected the success of the struggle in which the Nation was engaged to suppress the rebellion. If it was a proper and apt measure to effect that end, he might rightfully adopt it, not otherwise, however much he might desire universal freedom. He himself says, “when, in March, May and July, 1862, I made earnest and successive appeals to the border States to favor compensated emancipation, I believed the indispensable necessity for military emancipation and arming the blacks would come, unless averted by that measure. They declined the proposition, and I was, in my best judgment, driven to the alternative of either surrendering the Union, or issuing the emancipation proclamation.”

IIe honestly believed gradual and not immediate emancipation would be better for all."

The message proposing compensated emancipation was promptly followed by a resolution of Congress, declaring “That the United States ought to coöperate with any State which may adopt gradual emancipation of slavery, giving to such State pecuniary aid.” On the 9th of May, 1862, General David Hunter, whose zealous efforts to organize negro soldiers has already been noticed, issued an order declaring all the slaves within the States of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, which composed his district, "forerer free.

This order came while Mr. Lincoln was himself considering the subject of emancipation by his own proclamation, and in the midst of his efforts to bring about gradual, and compensated emancipation in the border States, and without any knowledge on his part of the General's intention to issue

He, therefore, immediately issued a proclamation declaring that such order was unauthorized. He recites the resolution of Congress, proposing coöperation and pecuniary aid to any State which might adopt gradual emancipation, and declared that he reserved to himself, under his responsibility, the exercise of the power of emancipating slaves as a war measure, and which he could not feel justified in leaving to any subordinate in the field. IIe goes on to say, the resolution here referred to was adopted by a large majority in both branches of Congress, and now stands an authentic, definite and solemn proposal of the Nation to the States and people most interested in the subject matter. He then made this solemn and earnest appeal :


"To the people of these States, now, I earnestly appeal. I do not argue; I beseech

you to make the argument for yourselves. You cannot, if you w

would, be blind to the signs of the times. I beg of you a solenn and enlarged consideration of them, ranging, if it may be, far above partisan and personal politics.

“This proposal makes common cause for a conimon object, casting no reproaches upon any one. It acts not the Pharisee. The change it contemplates would come gently, as the dews of Heaven, not rending or wrecking anything. Will you not embrace it? So much good has not been done by any one effort in all past time, as, in the Providence of God, it is now your high privilege to do. May the vast future not have to lament that you have neglected it.”

In addition to the message sent to Congress, Mr. Lincoln invited an interview with the Congressional delegations of Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland, Virginia and Delaware. In this interview, the President urged the adoption of the plan of compensated emancipation, but received little encouragement from the representatives of the border slave States.

It is well known to the President's immediate friends that he had nearly reached the conclusion, that if the proposition for gradual or compensated emancipation should be rejected by the border States, that military necessity would require him to proclaim emancipation. “I believed,” said he afterwards, “ the indispensable necessity for military emancipation and arming the blacks would come, unless averted by gradual and compensated emancipation.” How urgently he pressed the subject, appears from his proclamation in regard to General Hunter's order, and in his interview with the border State members.

In July, 1862, the President called the delegates from the border slave States again together, and again made to them his earnest and solemn appeal to accept gradual compensated emancipation. This appeal, submitted to them in writing, is full of earnest expostulation, argument and entreaty. Viewed in the light of subsequent events, it is full of sagacity, and the most wise statesmanship. Compare this great State paper with the reply and conduct of the distinguished men whom he addressed, and learn to appreciate the statesman. After advising them that, in his best judgment, the representatives of the border States held more power for good than any other equal number of members, he said that he intended no reproach, but he assured them, that in his opinion, if they had all voted for the resolution in the gradual emancipation message of March, the war would have been substantially ended. He went on to say that -

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