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[189] in reference to that question than he had done in his message to Congress in December, 1864, and proceeded to state its substance from memory. Judge Campbell said that the war had necessarily given rise to questions which ought to be adjusted, before a harmonious restoration of former relations could properly be made. He referred to the disbandment of the army, which would require time, and to the Confiscation Acts on both sides, under which property had been sold, the title to which would be affected by the facts existing when the war ended, unless provided for by stipulations. Mr. Seward replied that as to all questions involving rights of property, the courts would determine, and that Congress would no doubt be liberal in making restoration of confiscated property or providing indemnity. Mr. Stephens inquired what would be the status of that portion of the slave population in the Confederate States which had not then become free under the Emancipation Proclamation, or in other words, what effect that proclamation would have upon the entire black population. Mr. Lincoln said that was a judicial question and he did not know how the courts would decide it. His own opinion was that as the proclamation was a war measure and would have effect only from its being an exercise of the war power, as soon as the war ended it would be inoperative for the future. It would be held to apply only to such slaves as had come under its operation while it was in active exercise. That was his individual opinion, but the courts might decide differently. Mr. Seward said there were only about two hundred thousand slaves who up to that time had come under the actual operation of the proclamation, and who were then in the enjoyment of their freedom under it, so if the war should then cease, the status of much the larger portion of the slaves would be subject to judicial construction. He also called attention to the proposed Constitutional Amendment providing for the immediate abolition of slavery throughout the United States. He said that was done as a war measure, and if the war were then to cease it would probably not be adopted by a sufficient number of States to make it a part of the Constitution. In answer to an inquiry by Mr. Stephens, whether the Confederate States would be admitted to representation in Congress if they should abandon the war, Mr. Lincoln said his own individual opinion was that they ought to be, and he thought that they would be, but that he could not enter into any stipulation on that subject. Mr. Stephens having urged the importance of coming to some understanding as to the method of procedure in case the Confederate States should entertain

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