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Douglass was again heartened on January 31, 1865, when with the help of President Lincoln the House of Representatives passed the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery. Historian Michael Vorenberg wrote that among the blacks in the gallery was Charles Douglass, son of the abolitionist leader. “I wish that you could have been here,” the former Union soldier wrote his father, “such rejoicing I never before witnessed (white people I mean).” 50 Douglass was further thrilled by President Lincoln’s Second Inaugural speech five weeks later, but chagrined by his reception later that day at the White House. He recalled in his memoirs:

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