How did the Emancipation Proclamation open the door for black soldiers?

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For approximately the first year and a half of the Civil War, Lincoln and his administration attempted to put down the rebels without disrupting the social order of the South—in other words, without outlawing slavery in the states where it already existed. (This fact has been used by people on both sides of the issue to attack Lincoln as a hypocrite, or to assert that the War was not really about slavery and that "state's rights" in the abstract were the cause of the conflict. Neither of these assertions is true.) By September of 1862, however, several things had changed the Union administration's attitude about how the war should be prosecuted. One was the lobbying efforts of Frederick Douglass and other abolitionists, which...

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