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This Day in Georgia Civil War History

September 22, 1862

Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation Issued

On the heels of the Battle of Antietam, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. It freed slaves in states then in rebellion, offered aid to states abolishing slavery, mentioned the possibility of colonization of freed slaves, yet began with the insistence that war was to preserve Union. The freedom was not absolute; it did not affect slaves being held in states which had not seceded, and it was not to take place until January 1, 1863 - until that time rebelling states were given the opportunity to rejoin the Union and receive some recompense for their lost slave “property.”

Read the full text of the Proclamation here.

Image of First Page of the Emancipation Proclamation
National Archives
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