Abraham Lincoln’s Role in Stopping US Slavery

Subject: History
Pages: 3
Words: 922
Reading time:
4 min
Study level: College


Slavery was one of the acts the colonialists exposed Africans to after kidnapping them from their native lands. During the 17th and 18th centuries, Africans were forced to work in the American colonies, where they labored in plantations that produced crops such as tobacco and cotton. While slavery may seem to have only exposed Africans to heavy work, it also subjected them to torture and racism. The rise of brutal physical punishment, hard labor without compensation, and psychological torture motivated people such as Abraham Lincoln to devise ways of salvaging enslaved people (Foner, 2018). Nevertheless, before Abraham Lincoln’s presidency, slavery was a hot topic in American politics, but due to his involvement, Lincoln eradicated the bondage, preventing America from being divided in its future years.

Why the Involvement of Abraham Lincoln is Important in US History

Although the first antislavery bill never gained publicity, Lincoln introduced the Emancipation Proclamation to end slavery. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which declared that all enslaved people held within the rebellious states were freed (Foner, 2018). Additionally, the Emancipation Proclamation allowed the incorporation of the freed people into the national army to allow them to increase the Union’s human resources (Kulikoff, 2018). While it may appear that the Emancipation Proclamation ended slavery abruptly, the order only induced an imagination of millions of Black people being free in Americans’ minds. This induction led to a change of mindsets, and people started believing that the Civil War and other Union wars targeted freedom for all and not for enslaved personnel (Kulikoff, 2018). Unequivocally, Abraham Lincoln was vital in US history due to the introduction of the Emancipation Proclamation, which paved the way for the abolishment of the slave trade.

Causes and Events Leading to Lincoln’s Abolishment of Slavery


The main causes of slavery abolishment resonate around unfavorable conditions subjected to the enslaved people, the ethics surrounding the slave trade, and the social inequality expressed by bondage. Firstly, the enslaved were subjected to poor nutrition as they ate uncooked and poorly cooked meat, greens, and even molasses, which led to adverse health problems. Secondly, Abraham Lincoln and other philosophers believed that slavery was ethically wrong. According to Lincoln, slavery was an example of ethical relativism where despite the Whites thinking it was right, it did not make it so (Kulikoff, 2018). Lastly, slavery reflected the disparity in social status between the Whites and the Blacks, where the enslavers were seen living a lavish life at the expense of the enslaved. These three factors inspired Lincoln to formulate policies that would halt slavery in the US.


The events leading to the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation constitute those activities that resulted in the end of slavery in the US. In 1854, the Republican Party was formed, reviving Lincoln’s law career (Oakes, 2021). The membership of Lincoln in the Republican party led to the man’s rise from obscurity to prominence in 1860, and he claimed the presidential nomination through the party (Oakes, 2021). In 1861, the Civil War started, and Lincoln insisted that the war was not aimed at freeing the enslaved but instead targeted preserving the Union (Oakes, 2021). In 1862, Lincoln passed the Militia Act that allowed Black men to serve in the US armed forces. In September of the same year, the Union troops stopped advancing the Confederate forces (Morel, 2020). The stoppage of the Confederate forces happened months after Lincoln released the Emancipation Proclamation, which occurred in January 1863. Generally, all the events aimed at the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation.

How the Issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation Changed the Course of US History

The Emancipation Proclamation provided a major turning point on the way Africans were regarded during slavery. Before the introduction of the Emancipation Proclamation, Blacks were despised, denied integral rights, and subjected to poverty. For example, African Americans could not vote for governors or even local leaders of areas where they resided. However, when the Emancipation Proclamation was issued by Lincoln, African Americans started enjoying privileges that manifested their presence. For example, African Americans started getting appointments for high ranks in the army such as Lieutenant and commander positions. Additionally, the Emancipation Proclamation changed the ideology that Blacks were unequal to Whites and popularized the sense of equality. For instance, it stipulated that African Americans had the same privileges as their White counterparts to eat healthy and work in a favorable environment.

Impact of the Emancipation Proclamation on Today’s Society

The Emancipation Proclamation has impacted science, society, and cultures profoundly. In science, the Emancipation Proclamation promoted the rise of African American scientists through the establishment of education systems that supported inclusivity. For example, George Washington Carver became the best-known African American botanist during Lincoln’s presidency (Oakes, 2021). For society, the Emancipation Proclamation made slavery eradication and Union goal despite reuniting the country. Lastly, the act fostered the establishment of the African American culture that emphasized family closeness, solidarity, and community bonding, especially among Black people.


Slavery constitutes one of the major challenges that hon US history. Despite many politicians discussing the problem of slavery, Abraham Lincoln was able to establish mitigation measures during his judicial and presidential lives. One of Lincoln’s important contributions Despite encouraging unity, the Emancipation Proclamation allowed the involvement of the freed Blacks into important groups such as the army, which stressed their sense of belonging while in the US. Today, the impact of the Emancipation Proclamation is still seen through the lack of slavery and the establishment of laws prohibiting any bondage forms.


Foner, E. (2018). The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery. The Chautauqua Journal, 2(1), 5.

Fry, J. A. (2019). Lincoln, Seward, and US Foreign Relations in the Civil War Era. University Press of Kentucky.

Kulikoff, A. (2018). Abraham Lincoln and Karl Marx in Dialogue. Oxford University Press.

Morel, L. E. (2020). Lincoln and the American Founding. SIU Press.

Oakes, J. (2021). The Crooked Path to Abolition: Abraham Lincoln and the Antislavery Constitution. WW Norton & Company.