Civil War 150 Emancipation

December 29, 2012 - 11:32 AM
FILE - This Feb. 18, 2005 file photo shows the original Emancipation Proclamation on display in the Rotunda of the National Archives in Washington. As New Year's Day approached 150 years ago, all eyes were on President Abraham Lincoln in expectation of what he warned 100 days earlier would be coming _ his final proclamation declaring all slaves in states rebelling against the Union to be "forever free." A tradition began on Dec. 31, 1862, as many black churches held Watch Night services, awaiting word that Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation would take effect as the country was in the midst of a bloody Civil War. Later, congregations listened as the president's historic words were read aloud. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)