Second, while there is an undeniable tie between President Lincoln and the Black community, there is quite a lot about Lincoln for a commentary about the United States Colored Troops of Harford County, meant to celebrate Black History Month. There is the implication in the commentary that the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation freed a significant number of enslaved peoples which lead to an increase of Black soldiers in the Union Army. However, that was not the case. The Emancipation Proclamation, announced after the Union victory at Antietam in Western Maryland, went into effect on Jan. 1, 1863, but only impacted the “areas still in rebellion.” Enslaved peoples in border states like Maryland, Delaware, Kentucky or Missouri remained enslaved until the passage of the 13th Amendment. Yes, there were formerly enslaved peoples who served, however, many of them had self-emancipated or had been freed when Union Troops had marched through their areas.