Habeus Corpus

A writ, or legal action, that prevents governments from improperly imprisoning their citizens. In the United States, this means that citizens accused of  crimes have the right to appear before a court to determine if they have been properly detained. During the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln and other Union officials exercised unprecedented and questionable power by detaining people who vocally opposed the war, and by imposing martial law in non-combat areas.

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Ohio Civil War Central: An Encyclopedia of the American Civil War