The original autograph was lost in the Chicago fire of 1871. Surviving photographs of the document show it primarily in Lincoln's own hand. The superscription and ending are in the hand of a clerk, and the printed insertions are from the September draft.
The original of the Emancipation Proclamation of January 1, 1863, is in the National Archives in Washington, DC. With the text covering five pages the document was originally tied with narrow red and blue ribbons, which were attached to the signature page by a wafered impression of the seal of the United States. These images can be enlarged.
On September 22, 1862, following the Union victory at Antietam, President Lincoln issued this document, ordering that in 100 days the federal government would deem all slaves free in those states still rebelling against the Union. The Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation is the only surviving Proclamation document in Lincoln’s own hand. In 1864, Lincoln donated the document to the U.S. Sanitary Commission, which raffled it off at the Albany Relief Bazaar to help raise money for the Union war effort. Abolitionist Gerrit Smith won the raffle after buying 1,000 tickets at $1 apiece. Smith then sold the document to the New York State Legislature, with funds going to the Sanitary Commission. The legislature, in turn, deposited the document in the New York State Library, where it remains today.
The Emancipation Proclamation - Resources on The Web
This site is intended to promote investigation of the cultural conversation that took place in the United States on race, region, and reform during and immediately after the Civil War. In order to provide a historically accurate account of that period, it has been necessary to include examples of offensive language and images.
The Civil War Trust is devoted to the preservation of our nation's endangered Civil War battlefields. The Trust also promotes educational programs and heritage tourism initiatives to inform the public of the war's history and the fundamental conflicts that sparked it.
One hundred and fifty years ago, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued. In celebration of this milestone in American history and the impact it had both on the nation and the Black community, we've decided to do something a little special.
Letters To Our Ancestors is an anthology of heartfelt letters to those who came before us on this day of remembrance and celebration. We've asked leading Black community members to share their own words of gratitude, mourning (and sometimes apology) to that generation of brave souls who embarked into a new world after hundreds of years of subjugation.
The Library of Congress is home to many of the most important documents in American history. For each item there is a page with background information about the document, a list of links to digital materials concerning that document from the Library's site and elsewhere, and bibliographies both for general readers and for younger readers.
EDSITEment offers a treasure trove for teachers, students, and parents searching for high-quality material on the Internet in the subject areas of literature and language arts, foreign languages, art and culture, and history and social studies.
The New York State Museum, a division of the New York State Education Department, has organized an exhibition to mark the sesquicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. The exhibition, entitled The First Step to Freedom: Abraham Lincoln’s Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, offers an unprecedented display of the only surviving version of the document in Lincoln’s handwriting and will include historical background and interpretation of the document.
Lincoln at 200 is a collaborative project of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission, the Chicago History Museum, and the Newberry Library. The Institute for Museum and Library Services has generously provided funding for this Web exhibition as part of a series of initiatives to commemorate the Lincoln bicentennial.
Our Documents: A National Initiative on American History, Civics, and Service. At the heart of this initiative are 100 milestone documents of American history. We want everyone—students, teachers, parents, and the general public—to read these milestone documents, consider their meaning, discuss them, and decide which are the most significant and why.
CONVERSATION AIR DATE: Dec. 31, 2012 Emancipation Proclamation Celebrates 150 Years and an Enduring Power to Inspire Issued by President Lincoln on Jan. 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation is one of the defining documents of American democracy and is rarely available for public viewing. Ray Suarez talks to Annette Gordon-Reed of Harvard University about the importance of this artifact.
The Freedmen and Southern Society Project was established in 1976 to capture the essence of emancipation by depicting the drama of emancipation in the words of the participants: liberated slaves and defeated slaveholders, soldiers and civilians, common folk and the elite, Northerners and Southerners.