Lincoln 'Was No Friend to Slaves'; He Plotted to Deport Them after Civil War
Byline: From Tom Leonard in New York
ABRAHAM Lincoln's reputation as the great champion of America's slaves has taken a battering.
New evidence claims that the revered president wanted to send many of them to toil in British sugar and cotton plantations.
Two academics claim that documents uncovered in British archives show that Lincoln was rather less enamoured by the prospect of a racially-united America than is often assumed.
The 16th U.S. president is widely lionised for winning the American Civil War for the Union and bringing an end to slavery.
Although earlier historians have conceded that he did propose sending some freed slaves to British colonies, they have dismissed it as a ruse to placate racist voters.
However, according to evidence from the British legation in Washington that has turned up at the National Archives in Kew, the president was deadly serious about black colonisation right up to his assassination in 1865.
Phillip Magness and Sebastian Page say that just after Lincoln announced the freedom of threequarters of America's 4million slaves with his historic 1863 Emancipation Proclamation, he authorised plans to set up freed men'settlements in the colonies of British Honduras and British Guiana, now called Belize and Guyana.
He secretly authorised British officials to recruit hundreds of thousands of blacks for a new life in the sugar and cotton plantations of Central America.
Lincoln also considered a plan to get thousands of black soldiers out of the way after the Civil War ended by sending them to Panama to build a canal. …