By John Syrett
This ebook is the 1st complete account in additional than twenty years of 2 major, yet fairly understudied, legislation handed throughout the Civil warfare. The Confiscation Acts (1861-62) have been designed to sanction slave retaining states through authorizing the government to grab insurgent homes (including land and different resources held in Northern and border states) and furnish freedom to slaves who fought with or labored for the accomplice army. Abraham Lincoln objected to the Acts for worry they could push border states, relatively Missouri and Kentucky, into secession. The Acts have been ultimately rendered moot by way of the Emancipation Proclamation and the thirteenth modification. John Syrett examines the political contexts of the Acts, particularly the debates in Congress, and demonstrates how the failure of the confiscation acts through the warfare presaged the political and structural shortcomings of Reconstruction after the battle.
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Additional info for The Civil War Confiscation Acts: Failing to Reconstruct the South (Reconstructing America)
Even so, the fourth section of the pro- ................. 11265$ $CH2 03-11-05 11:38:49 PS PAGE 27 T C W C A posed bill gave the president the authority to confiscate when propitious, which would probably mean when it suited the military. 15 Cowan and other conservatives realized, of course, that slavery was the key to all discussions of confiscation. At the start of the debates over the second act, many in Congress appeared determined to preserve the institutions of the antebellum period.
On the one hand, this would have allowed the North to confiscate without regard to the Constitution, other than how to define the war powers. Belligerent status for the South, however, would have legitimized foreign recognition for the South, which neither Democrats nor Republicans could accept.
He did believe, however, that there would be numerous unlawful confiscation attempts since local officials would wrongly assume the act permitted seizure of property simply because the owners were citizens of seceded states. Yet, Coffey said, Bates also expected that the district ................. 41 In other words, the attorney general would give no directions and, although worried that the law would be improperly applied, nonetheless, wanted it enforced. It was not surprising that local officials were, for the most part, reluctant to implement the first act vigorously.