Commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation

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LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the Eman-
cipation Proclamation

WHEREAS, It is the sense of this Legislative Body to commemorate signif-
icant events which represent turning points in our unique history and
which are indelibly etched in the saga of our great Nation; and
WHEREAS, Attendant to such concern, and in full accord with its long-
standing traditions, this Legislative Body is justly proud to commem-
orate the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation; and
WHEREAS, On January 1, 1863, Abraham Lincoln presided over the annual
White House New Year's reception; late that afternoon, he retired to his
study to sign the Emancipation Proclamation; and
WHEREAS, The Emancipation Proclamation arose from many causes and was
the work of many individuals; it began at the outset of the Civil War,
when slaves sought refuge behind Union lines, and did not end until
December 1865, with the ratification of the 13th Amendment, which irre-
vocably abolished slavery throughout the nation; and
WHEREAS, A crucial turning point in history, the Emancipation Procla-
mation embodied a double emancipation: for the slaves, since it ensured
that if the Union emerged victorious, slavery would perish, and for
Abraham Lincoln himself, for whom it marked the abandonment of his
previous assumptions about how to abolish slavery and the role blacks
would play in post-emancipation American life; and
WHEREAS, The Emancipation Proclamation marked a dramatic transforma-
tion in the nature of the Civil War and in Abraham Lincoln's own
approach to the problem of slavery, as no longer did he seek the consent
of slave holders; and
WHEREAS, Within the Emancipation Proclamation, Abraham Lincoln
addressed blacks directly, not as property subject to the will of
others, but as men and women whose loyalty the Union must earn; and
WHEREAS, For the first time, Abraham Lincoln welcomed black soldiers
into the Union Army; over the next two years some 200,000 black men
would serve in the Army and Navy, playing a critical role in achieving
Union victory; and
WHEREAS, Abraham Lincoln also urged freed slaves to go to work for
reasonable wages in the United States; and
WHEREAS, From the first days of the Civil War, slaves had acted to
secure their own liberty; the Emancipation Proclamation confirmed their
insistence that the war for the Union must become a war for freedom; and
WHEREAS, The Emancipation Proclamation added moral force to the Union
cause and strengthened the Union both militarily and politically; as a
milestone along the road to slavery's final destruction, the Emancipa-
tion Proclamation has assumed a place among the great documents of human
freedom; now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, That this Legislative Body pause in its deliberations to
commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.


  • 18 / Jan / 2013
  • 24 / Jan / 2013
  • 24 / Jan / 2013

Resolution Details

Law Section:
Resolutions, Legislative


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