Lincoln and the triumph of the nation constitutional conflict in the American Civil War

Neely, Mark E

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  • Creator Mark E. Neely
  • Format Books
  • Publication Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2011.
  • Series
  • Physical Details
    • 1 online resource (417 p.)
  • ISBNs 9781469602530, 1469602539, 9780807869024, 0807869023
  • OCLC ocn770009268


  • "The Civil War placed the U.S. Constitution under unprecedented--and, to this day, still unmatched--strain. In Lincoln and the Triumph of the Nation, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Mark Neely examines for the first time in one book the U.S. Constitution and its often overlooked cousin, the Confederate Constitution, and the ways the documents shaped the struggle for national survival. Previous scholars have examined wartime challenges to civil liberties and questions of presidential power, but Neely argues that the constitutional conflict extended to the largest questions of national existence. Drawing on judicial opinions, presidential state papers, and political pamphlets spiced with the everyday immediacy of the partisan press, Neely reveals how judges, lawyers, editors, politicians, and government officials, both North and South, used their constitutions to fight the war and save, or create, their nation. Lincoln and the triumph of the nation illuminates how the U.S. Constitution not only survived its greatest test but emerged stronger after the war. That this happened at a time when the nation's very existence was threatened, Neely argues, speaks ultimately to the wisdom of the Union leadership, notably President Lincoln and his vision of the American nation"--Provided by publisher.


  • Description based upon print version of record.
  • Includes bibliographical references and index.
  • Includes bibliographical references (p. [381]-398) and index.
  • English


  • Secession and anarchy : Lincoln's view of the constitution and the nation -- Habeas corpus, the nation, and the presidency -- The Emancipation Proclamation : the triumph of nationalism over racism and the constitution -- Soldiers in the courtroom -- The nation in the courts : the least dangerous branch fights the civil war -- Secession : deratifying the constitution -- The police state of Richmond -- State rights in the confederacy
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