Electronic Resource & Database Access

There will be no off-campus access to Library electronic resources and databases this Friday, November 28 from 6-10pm. Library buildings are also closed for the Thanksgiving holiday during that time.

Who Freed the Slaves?: Emancipation as a Social Movement

UCSB Library (Special Collections, 3rd floor)
Winter – Spring 2013

Who Freed the Slaves?: Emancipation as a Social Movement exhibition posterOn January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation became law. Conceived as a pragmatic measure to hasten the end of a bloody civil war, the Proclamation declared millions of slaves to be “forever free.” Americans naturally identify this momentous event with Abraham Lincoln, who became widely known as “The Great Emancipator.” While Lincoln undoubtedly played a key role in ending slavery, were political figures alone responsible for this momentous event? Historians have come to see emancipation as the result of a broader social movement which worked tirelessly to force Americans to consider the moral and economic consequences of slavery. The slaves themselves were a key part of this movement. By fleeing to Union lines, serving as Union soldiers, and insisting on full equality, they set the stage for their own liberation.Confederate Currency

This exhibit, co-curated by History Professor John Majewski and Ph.D. student Maria Fedorova, makes use of documents and artifacts from the William Wyles Collection—a treasure trove of original nineteenth-century materials about Lincoln, the Civil War, and the American West held in the Department of Special Collections.

 Little Contraband 1862 etching of slave girl