Scarce First and only printed pamphlet of the Emancipation Proclamation; published only weeks before the issuance of Lincoln's executive order abolishing slavery in America
The Proclamation Of Emancipation, By The President Of The United States, To Take Effect January 1st, 1863.
Item Number: 101345
Boston: John Murray Forbes, 1862.
First and only printed pamphlet of the Emancipation Proclamation, produced for distribution to Union soldiers and African Americans (both enslaved and free) in December of 1862; the month preceding the issuance of the executive order. 16mo, original salmon wrappers as issued. The pamphlet’s publisher, Boston industrialist and abolitionist John Murray Forbes, emphasized the necessity of the Civil War in the effort to end slavery with a quote printed on the rear panel of the pamphlet from a speech attributed to “Alex M. Stephens, Vice President of the so-called Confederate States, delivered March 21, 1861: This stone (slavery), which was rejected by the first builders, is become the chief stone of the corner in our new edifice.” In 1899, Forbes’ daughter recounted the genesis of this pocket edition: “With the view of placing the Proclamation of Emancipation in the hands of the negroes themselves, one and half inches square, put into packages of fifty each, and distributed among the Northern soldiers at the front, who scattered them about among the blacks, while on the march” (Sara Forbes Hughes, 348-49). In very good condition with a small tear to the front panel. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional example of this scarce and significant piece of Americana.
Abraham Lincoln issued the The Emancipation Proclamation, or Proclamation 95, on January 1st, 1865. The executive order changed the federal legal status of more than 3.5 million enslaved African Americans from slave to free and made the abolition of slavery an explicit goal of the Union war effort. To ensure emancipation, Lincoln pushed for passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, and insisted that Reconstruction plans for Southern states require abolition in new state constitutions. Congress passed the 13th Amendment by the necessary two-thirds vote on January 31, 1865, and it was ratified by the states on December 6, 1865, ending legal slavery.