Many Northern civilians owned slaves. Prior to, during and even after the War of Northern Aggression.
Surprisingly, to many history impaired individuals, most Union Generals and staff had slaves to serve them! William T. Sherman had many slaves that served him until well after the war was over and did not free them until late in 1865.
U.S. Grant also had several slaves, who were only freed after the 13th amendment in December of 1865. When asked why he didn’t free his slaves earlier, Grant stated “Good help is so hard to come by these days.”
Contrarily, Confederate General Robert E. Lee freed his slaves (which he never purchased — they were inherited) in 1862! Lee freed his slaves several years before the war was over, and considerably earlier than his Northern counterparts. And during the fierce early days of the war when the South was obliterating the Yankee armies!
Lastly, and most importantly, why did NORTHERN States outlaw slavery only AFTER the war was over? The so-called “Emancipation Proclamation” of Lincoln only gave freedom to slaves in the SOUTH! NOT in the North! This pecksniffery even went so far as to find the state of Delaware rejecting the 13th Amendment in December of 1865 and did not ratify it (13th Amendment / free the slaves) until 1901!
Read more at http://m.snopes.com/2015/06/30/confederate-history-slave-ownership/#CSUCK13DMACcqxcM.99