Lincoln, Abraham - Research Article from Americans at War

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 6 pages of information about Lincoln, Abraham.
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Lincoln maintained that the secession of the Confederate states was a constitutional and legal nullity. The federal Union, as shaped by the Constitution, did not allow individual states to unilaterally withdraw from the Union. Once the Confederate forces attacked Fort Sumter April 12–14, 1861, Lincoln issued a proclamation, calling on

Abraham Lincoln, four days before he was assassinated. Abraham Lincoln, four days before he was assassinated.

the states for 75,000 militia to suppress what he described (using the words of the Militia Act of 1792) as "combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings." Hence, Lincoln regarded the Civil War, from the viewpoint of law, strictly as a local insurrection, rather than a declared war between two sovereign and equal nations.

This, however, posed serious problems in international law. Captured Confederates could, as insurrectionists, be indicted as traitors and executed under civil law; but in practice, both Union and...

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This section contains 1,774 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Lincoln, Abraham Encyclopedia Article
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Americans at War
Lincoln, Abraham from Americans at War. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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