U.S. Senate Passage of the 13th Amendment


150 years ago today, the U.S. Senate passed the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, an important milestone on the road to slavery’s final end in the United States. Although the story of its later passage in the U.S. House of Representatives in January 1865 has become better known to the public as a result of Lincoln (2012), it is important to remember that the amendment would not have been sent to states if it had not earlier passed the Senate. The U.S. Senate has a short article on the 13th Amendment’s passage through that body that is worth reading.

I also was going to post on the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s letter of April 4, 1864, to Albert Hodges, where he famously wrote the Kentucky newspaper editor that “If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong,” but Brooks Simpson beat me to the punch, so rather than write on this topic here is a link to Simpson’s blog entry on it over at Crossroads.

I’m working on my post for April 12, which will be the sesquicentennial of the Fort Pillow Massacre. Stay tuned.

About Donald R. Shaffer

Donald R. Shaffer is the author of _After the Glory: The Struggles of Black Civil War Veterans_ (Kansas, 2004), which won the Peter Seaborg Award for Civil War Scholarship in 2005. More recently he published (with Elizabeth Regosin), _Voices of Emancipation: Understanding Slavery, the Civil War, and Reconstruction through the U.S. Pension Bureau Files_ (2008). Dr. Shaffer teaches online exclusively (i.e., a virtual professor). He lives in Arizona and can be contacted at donald_shaffer@yahoo.com
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