A Black Man Reads of the Emancipation Proclamation
The man is reading a newspaper with headline, "Presidential Proclamation, Slavery," which refers to the Jan. 1863 Emancipation Proclamation. Stephens has created several other illustrations that depict slavery, slave rebellion, and emancipation.
These illustrations can be found at: https://www.loc.gov/search/?fa=contributor:stephens,+h.+l.+%28henry+loui...
Stephens, H.L. Black man reading newspaper by candle light. Drawing and watercolor. c. 1863. Library of Congress: Prints and Photographs Division. http://www.loc.gov/pictures/resource/cph.3g02442/ (Accessed October 25, 2018)