December 8, 2017
On this day in history, the Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction was issued by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 during the American Civil War. The war was almost three years in, and the Union Army had pushed the Confederate Army out of several regions of the South. Some rebellious states were ready to have their governments rebuilt. President Lincoln’s plan established a plan postwar. The proclamation decreed that a state in rebellion against the U.S. federal government could be reintegrated into the Union when 10% of the 1860 vote count from that state had taken an oath of allegiance to the U.S. and pledged to abide by Emancipation, the movement to end slavery in the United States. Voters could then elect delegates to draft revised state constitutions and establish new state governments. This policy was meant to shorten the war by offering a moderate peace plan. The emancipation policy would later be extended to insist that the new governments abolish slavery.