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Chapter 19: the end of Abolitionism

The original and distinctive Abolition movement that was directed against slavery in all parts of the land without regard to State or territorial lines, and because it was assumed to be wrong in principle and practice, may be said, as far as the country at large was concerned, to have culminated at the advent of the Republican party. To a considerable extent it disappeared, but its disappearance was that of one stream flowing into or uniting with another. The union of the two currents extended, but did not intensify, the Anti-Slavery sentiment of the country. It diluted it and really weakened it. It brought about a crisis of great peril to the cause of Anti-Slaveryism — in some respects the most critical through which it was called upon to pass. Many of those attaching themselves to the Republican party, as the new political organization was called, were not in sympathy with Abolitionism. They were utterly opposed to immediate emancipation; or, for that matter, to emancipation of any kind. They wanted slavery to remain where it was, and were perfectly willing that it should be undisturbed. They disliked the blacks, and did not want to have them freed, fearing that if set at liberty they would overrun what was then free soil.

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