Page:The Republican Party (1920).djvu/49

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The Civil War

But the border states saved the day. New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Indiana and other northern states went strongly Democratic. But Missouri and the other border states returned strong Republican majorities and assured the party continued control of Congress, though by a diminutive margin. Lincoln’s strategy was vindicated. And in his policy both of prosecuting the war and of emancipating the slaves he and his party resolutely persevered. At the third national convention of the Republican party in June, 1864 a platform plank was adopted declaring unequivocally that "as slavery was the cause and now constitutes the strength of this rebellion, justice and national safety demand its utter and complete extirpation from the soil of he Republic."

With the further details of the prosecution of the war we need not here concern ourselves. They do not directly pertain to the subject now before us. It suffices to remember that the Republican party was in full control of the national government all through the war; that despite an opposition that was often factional and venomous it enacted the legislation and performed the administrative acts necessary for the successful conduct of the war both in field operations and in fiscal and other provisions; and in April, 1865 ended the war in the complete restoration of the Union on terms of unprecedented generosity and benevolence. Thus was the first of the two supreme tasks accomplished. The other was brought to its completion in 1865 by the adoption of the thirteenth amendment to the Constiution, declaring that "neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist