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Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men: The Ideology of the Republican Party Before the Civil War was great. Don't let the title fool you, it's at least as much about the formation of the Republican party as its ideas. The language shows its age (1970) in a few places. Foner consistently refers to "the Negro" and "the race issue". He would hardly use those terms in the same way, or nearly so often, a decade later.
Fun bit: The a GOP paper in Wisconsin believed that their candidate's name was Abram and told off anybody who spelled it Abraham for a while.
Now it's The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery, because I've read sections of it a few times over but never done the whole book and I love me some Eric Foner.