Was Abraham Lincoln the Black Man’s “Friend?”


The enemy of my enemy is my “friend.”

The man who keeps me a slave is my “enemy.” Anybody who works to set me free is my ally, whether he “likes” me or not.

Was Lincoln the black man’s friend? He was compared to Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Was Lincoln the black man’s friend before the Emancipation Proclamation? Nope.

Didn’t Jefferson Davis become the black man’s friend when the Confederacy passed a law enabling negroes to serve as soldiers in exchange for their freedom? Not as much as Lincoln was their friend. Davis’ “befriending” was too late regardless.

Is it really that simple? No, but it’s close.

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3 thoughts on “Was Abraham Lincoln the Black Man’s “Friend?”

  1. LOL. This is a terrific post, lunchcountersitin! What more is there to say?

    I am currently reading a book about what took place in the west as the Civil War raged in the east. The enemy of my enemy is my friend was clearly the only strategy left for men and women who were members of Indigenous nations that were in the way of westward expansion. There were civil wars within civil wars within civil wars. In the end, there were reservations, third world levels of poverty that still exist, and residential schools whose instructors and administrators attempted to rob Indigenous men and women of their culture, their language, their children, and sometimes their lives. No white man was the friend of Indigenous men and women. It took the first African American president of the US to bring a true friend in government to the “Indian”. Is that all there is to it? No, but it’s close.

  2. The Blue, the Gray, and the Red: Indian Campaigns of the Civil War by Thom Hatch.

    From the introduction:

    “The significance of this period of conflict on the frontier cannot be understated. When the guns fell silent in the East, there was no truce to hostilities in the West. The army would experience twenty more years of warfare against the Indians, and every battle and every drop of blood that was shed was a direct result of operations conducted during the Civil War.”

    I am three chapters into the book. The author approaches the subject from all angles. As Robert Moore indicated to me in one conversation and as this book confirms, both the North and the South used Indigenous nations for their own purposes. The end result was as I indicated above–reservations, poverty, and residential schools. Some mixed blood members of some Indigenous nations held African slaves, too, as I am sure you know. The author explores this aspect of the conflict as well. It was a bloody affair all the way around for everyone, and tragic, in the end. I know a Cherokee Elder who calls reservations “POW camps”. I find that to be an accurate description.

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