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View Full Version : JUNETEENTH’s Local celebration of history, but is historically incorrect



Levi Battery
01-22-2007, 01:06 PM
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I am writing in regards our Juneteenth events of last year. I four local repoprting quite interesting but historically inaccurate. The need to celebrate Juneteenth (June19) is aspiring and is a great thing for the black community and America as a whole. It was a shame that the festivities were mired with violence. Folks just trying to have a good time should not have to be subjected to that.



As for the facts behind Juneteenth.



Folks who helped sponsor the event reported that Juneteenth was a celebration of the end of slavery by way of President Lincolns Emancipation Proclamation. This is historically incorrect and based on myth and not fact.



Juneteenth occurred on June 19, 1865 in the state of Texas. This is when the slaves of Texas received news that the war had ended and slavery was going to be abolished. Slavery was not abolished by law until 18 December 1865 with the passage of the 13th amendment. Some states such as West Virginia did not ratify it until February 1866.



President Lincoln’s proclamation was originally crafted in January of 1863 but he needed a platform or victory to announce it. It was a political and military stroke of genius but in reality it failed to free any slaves.



Lincoln’s time came with victories in Vicksburg and Gettysburg. Without those victories and had Lincoln announced the proclamation, it would have had no substance and would appear to be that of a nation in direr straights. Therefore on 19 November 1863, during the dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery, Lincoln makes his famous speech. The speaker before him, Mr. Edmond Evert, spoke for over two hours while Lincoln took less that 4 minutes but it was his speech that we remember.



The facts behind the Emancipation were that it only freed slaves in the states currently in rebellion. That is the Confederate States of America. No slave states in the union (West Virginia, Delaware or Maryland) were mentioned. There were also several areas in the Confederacy that were exempt from the emancipation.



The only area of which slaves were freed during the war was the District of Columbia (Washington D.C.) No slaves were freed at anytime during the war and the proclamation did little from that standpoint but was a great political tool in the form of keeping England, France and Russia from supporting the Confederacy.



Lincoln is remembered as the great emancipator but as the war started his concern was that of saving the republic and not abolishing slavery unless it also would save the nation. The union refused to recruit or allow for blacks to volunteer for federal service until in 1863. Even then blacks were segregate, treated with mistrust and for sometime not paid. While in the Confederate blacks were used as servants, bodyguards, teamsters while a small handful even fought for the south. The reasons vary but some even received pensions after the war.



Slavery was a horrific institution. The ending should be celebrated but the truth also needs to be celebrated.



We have failed our children. When we teach history and black history, but our children are not taught about Fredrick Douglass, Robert Smalls, Elizabeth Freedman or other great blacks of the Civil War era and before. Our kids have no idea what the 13th and 14th amendment mean. We need to teach history as it was and not as we want it to be.
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Justin Runyon
01-22-2007, 02:38 PM
Lincoln’s time came with victories in Vicksburg and Gettysburg. Without those victories and had Lincoln announced the proclamation, it would have had no substance and would appear to be that of a nation in direr straights.


Odd since the proclamation took effect 7 months before Gettysburg or Vicksburg.


Therefore on 19 November 1863, during the dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery, Lincoln makes his famous speech. The speaker before him, Mr. Edmond Evert, spoke for over two hours while Lincoln took less that 4 minutes but it was his speech that we remember.

How does this relate again? "therefore" usually means one thing has something to do with the other and you just did'nt corelate the two.

LibertyHallVols
01-22-2007, 02:52 PM
Odd since the proclamation took effect 7 months before Gettysburg or Vicksburg.

Doggonnit, Justin...
Why do you always have to spoil a good story with the facts!? :rolleyes:

Levi Battery
01-22-2007, 02:53 PM
The Emancipation Proclamation was announced on September 22, 1862. As the final version took full effect on January 1, 1863.

This Authorized Edition of the Emancipation Proclamation was printed and signed in June of 1864.

Union victory, supported not only freedom but suffrage for black veterans. Finally, in promoting the Thirteenth Amendment (1865), which formally ended slavery, Lincoln was finally willing to change the itself.

Lincoln first informed his cabinet of his intent to issue the proclamation on July 22, 1862. Secretary of State William Seward advised him to wait for a federal victory, fearing the Proclamation would be considered a desperate act if issued before the North won a major battle.

Therefore, the president carefully worded the final document to affect only those states still in rebellion as of January 1, 1863:

Justin Runyon
01-22-2007, 03:17 PM
Doggonnit, Justin...
Why do you always have to spoil a good story with the facts!? :rolleyes:

I know John, I hate it too. I blame all those History Profs. that insisted I learn things before they gave me a degree. I hate those guys.

tompritchett
01-22-2007, 05:54 PM
Odd since the proclamation took effect 7 months before Gettysburg or Vicksburg.



How does this relate again? "therefore" usually means one thing has something to do with the other and you just did'nt corelate the two.

I do not know whether or not this was intended or not, but the Gettysburg's Address was the first time that Lincoln publically made ending slavery an explicit Union goal for the war. Prior to that, the only explicit Union purpose for the war was to re-unify the Union. Even the Emmanicipation did not change that.

hanktrent
01-22-2007, 08:27 PM
I do not know whether or not this was intended or not, but the Gettysburg's Address was the first time that Lincoln publically made ending slavery an explicit Union goal for the war. Prior to that, the only explicit Union purpose for the war was to re-unify the Union. Even the Emmanicipation did not change that.

Southerners, on the other hand, were claiming right from the start, that they could see through the rhetoric and that ending slavery would be the goal of the Union side.

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net

tompritchett
01-23-2007, 11:05 AM
Southerners, on the other hand, were claiming right from the start, that they could see through the rhetoric and that ending slavery would be the goal of the Union side.

It would be the goal of the "Black Republicans" and that is why the first 7 states seceded. The war itself, which the South started - not the North, resulted from shots being fired over what was in reality a sovereignty issue. I am sure that many Southern leaders realized that defeat by the Union would have likely resulted in the abolition of slavery, but IMHO the Southern leadership and soldiers were fighting more to preserve the existence of their new nation than just for the preservation of slavery, even though the founding states of the Confederacy left the Union and formed their new country in order to preserve slavery as an institution. In particular, I suspect that preservation of the Confederacy and defense of their home states were the predominant motivations of the most Confederate enlisted soldiers.

AZReenactor
01-23-2007, 12:32 PM
It would be the goal of the "Black Republicans" and that is why the first 7 states seceded. The war itself, which the South started - not the North, resulted from shots being fired over what was in reality a sovereignty issue. I am sure that many Southern leaders realized that defeat by the Union would have likely resulted in the abolition of slavery, but IMHO the Southern leadership and soldiers were fighting more to preserve the existence of their new nation than just for the preservation of slavery, even though the founding states of the Confederacy left the Union and formed their new country in order to preserve slavery as an institution. In particular, I suspect that preservation of the Confederacy and defense of their home states were the predominant motivations of the most Confederate enlisted soldiers.

Seems to me we are just splitting hairs. The Southern leadership had little interest in preserving countries but were all fired up to preserve slavery. I think this is readily evidenced by their willingness to rip apart the nation founded by the men of 1776 over a percieved threat to that "sacred instetution" that they saw as ordained by both God and history. No matter how noble an individual soldier's motives or how whitewashed their collective motives, we are all better off that the lost casue was lost.

hanktrent
01-23-2007, 02:14 PM
Now that I've got more time to look up an example, here's the kind of thing I was referring to above, when I said that Southerners were claiming right from the start, that they could see through the rhetoric and that ending slavery would be the goal of the Union side. The following is from DeBow's Review, December 1860:


Mr. Lincoln may proclaim his intention to enforce the fugitive slave law, but he is bound down by the acts of his party, and will find it impossible. Indeed he is bound by his own arguments and doctrines as the real author of the higher law and irrepressible conflict, for they are but part and parcel of each other, and Mr. Seward only borrowed them as has been charged, and never satisfactorily denied. The latter doctrine Mr. Seward announced in October, 1858. Mr. Lincoln said at Springfield, Illinois, on the 17th June, 1858: "A house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved--I do not expect the house to fall--but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other."

But we need not rely upon this. [The author mentions the platform of the Republican party, and also quotes several northern newspapers to prove his point about what's "really" going on up north. For example, from the Pittsburg Post:]

"In a few weeks we will know whether the effect will be advantageous or injurious to the country. We shall know whether the citizens of the slaveholding States will acquiesce in the overwhelming decision of their Northern brethren that slavery must be extinguished.

"There is no longer any room for dodging. The question has been fairly put to the people of the free States, and, as far as public sentiment has reached us, they have, by large majorities, decided that negro slavery is not authorized by the Constitution of the United States, and that it must be extinguished. The edict has gone forth, and the South must either submit or array themselves against the Union."

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net

tompritchett
01-23-2007, 06:03 PM
Seems to me we are just splitting hairs.

True but then my training is to be as precise as I can be. Granted slavery would be preserved as long as the Confederacy was preserved and, if the North had started the war by trying to invade the South, I would fully agree with you. The first seven states had already preserved slavery within their borders by seceding; there was no need to start a war with the Union to preserve slavery - provided the Union did not try to bring them back by force. However that is not how the war started. Instead, the first shot was fired when the Union forces refused to remove themselves from territory that South Carolina considered to be theirs. This highly volatile situation got worse when Major Anderson moved his troops from the mainland to Fort Sumter in an attempt on his part to actually defuse the situation rather than make it worse. Unfortunately, Major Anderson severely underestimated the reaction of South Carolina to his occupying a position that, in his own words, commanded the harbor. Had it not been for the sovereignty issue here, possibly at Ft. Pickens, it is possible that the Civil War may have never broken out. At that point, the Confederacy was fighting for its very survival.