My first response to this article was deleted by the site monitors
The following is my second response to the above article, my first response having been deleted by the site monitors for whatever reason.  I have therefore tried to be a little bit more "touchy-feely" in this post so as not to injure the fragile egos of some of Tampa Bay Online’s more sensitive readers:
Evidently the "powers that be" who monitor these comments decided it was not in good taste for me to point out to BSura that, given the prevalence on the part of most Americans of the 1860s toward what today is called "racist thought," it is highly unlikely that Americans would have been willing to sacrifice over 600,000 American soldiers (the vast majority of whom were white) plus at least that many Southern civilians to end African slavery in the United States.  History clearly points out that even Abraham Lincoln had the goal of government reimbursement to slaveholders for the cost of their slaves’ emancipation, and then deporting all the freed African slaves out of the U.S. to either Africa, South America, or the Caribbean Islands.  History will also show that following Lincoln’s issuance of his "Emancipation Proclamation" in January of 1863, there were race riots in, of all places, New York City in which whites lynched blacks from the streetlights to protest the change in the stated goal of the war from its original intent of simply preserving the Union to one of freeing the slaves.  There are contemporary written accounts of entire Federal units (such as several from southern Illinois) that deserted the Union Army rather than fight to free the slaves.  The vast majority of American citizens in the 1860s were not overly-concerned about African slavery, and certainly would not have been willing to sacrifice their own lives and treasure to that extent simply in order to preserve or destroy the institution of African slavery.
In the northern States, slavery was eliminated through the process of "gradual emancipation" which allowed decades for African slaves in the North to be emancipated.  This is why, for example, the 1860 U.S. census still shows slaves being owned in the State of New Jersey, or why Union Gen. U.S. Grant’s wife still owned slaves in Ohio until after passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in December of 1865.
Given the huge preponderance of evidence that the majority of Americans in the 1860s would be considered "racist" by today’s standards, it is impossible to believe that many Americans would have been willing to lose their very lives in an attempt to free slaves, in the case of the North, or, in the South, to allow <10% of rich Southern plantation owners to continue to own their slaves, when the African slaves meant nothing to the majority of them.