Few events in history have been as consequential in defining American identity as the Civil War and its corresponding march to freedom. With the 150th anniversary of the war upon us, Professor James L. Coll reflects on the enduring legacy of the deadly conflict regarding the legal and political struggle towards the abolition of slavery. During this discussion, we will focus on President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation as well as wartime legislative developments dealing with the 'peculiar institution.' While securing freedom would present one set of issues in the South in the 1860s, defining equality introduced even more complications throughout the nation. In this context, we will also explore the subsequent policy for Reconstruction of the South that resulted in nothing short of a revolution in American constitutional theory. James Coll is an adjunct associate professor of American and Constitutional history at Nassau Community College and a detective with the New York City Police Department. Co-sponsored with the Huntington League of Women Voters. Free, open to all.