Abraham Lincoln gave his “Emancipation Proclamation” speech on January 1st, 1863. It is presumed by the American public that this order given by the president freed all slaves, but those who were freed were those under confederate control. Lincoln’s Secretary of State, WIlliam Seward, said in reply to Lincoln’s address, “We show our symapthy with slavery by emancipating slaves where we cannot reach.” Although not all states were considered free, ex-slaves who were given their freedom saw hope in the union and their fight to abolish slavery. The proclamation allowed blacks to fight for union as well. Many ex-slaves took this chance to fight against slavery as a whole and to abolish it from the nation. About 200,000 black soldiers fought for the union in the attempt to end slavery completely. To this day, the Emancipation Proclamation is considered one of the best examples of freedom in the United States.
These links will give you more information about Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation as well as images of the document: