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00000174-b11b-ddc3-a1fc-bfdbb1a20000The Schreiner University Department of History is honoring the sesquicentennial of the American Civil War with a series of short vignettes focusing on events from 1861 through 1865. The Civil War was the most destructive conflict in American history, but it was also one of our most defining moments as a people and as a nation. Let us know what you think about "This Week in the Civil War." E-mail your comments to Dr. John Huddleston at jhuddles@schreiner.edu.Airs: Weekdays at 5:19 a.m., 8:19 a.m., 4:19 p.m. on KTXI and 4:49 a.m., 9:29 p.m. on KSTX.

This Week in the Civil War - 658

On Tuesday, September 15, 1863, citing the existing “state of rebellion,” President Abraham Lincoln suspended the exercise of habeas corpus, depriving persons held by the military or civil authorities of the privilege of being brought before a judge to determine if there was sufficient evidence to warrant their continuing detention. 

In prior years Lincoln had authorized similar suspensions.  Now, with Copperhead activity in the North at an all-time low, the president once again suspended the privilege of habeas corpus. 

Despite Chief Justice Roger Taney’s concerns, the Supreme Court would not determine whether the Constitution gave the president special power to suspend the writ of habeas corpus during wartime until after the war had ended.  As head of the Union war effort, Lincoln freely exercised extraordinary power during the American Civil War.