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The Slaveholding Republic
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The Slaveholding Republic: An Account of the United States Government's Relations to Slavery

Don E. Fehrenbacher and Ward M. McAfee


Many leading historians have argued that the Constitution of the United States was a proslavery document. But this book refutes this claim in a landmark history that stretches from the Continental Congress to the Presidency of Abraham Lincoln. The book shows that the Constitution itself was more or less neutral on the issue of slavery and that, in the antebellum period, the idea that the Constitution protected slavery was hotly debated (many Northerners would concede only that slavery was protected by state law, not by federal law). Nevertheless, it also reveals that US policy abroad and in th ... More

Keywords: United States, Constitution, America, slavery, proslavery, Abraham Lincoln, emancipation, Continental Congress

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2002 Print ISBN-13: 9780195158052
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195158052.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Don E. Fehrenbacher, author
Stanford University (Emeritus)

Ward M. McAfee, editor
California State University at San Bernardino

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