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Chapter 10: Prudence Crandall.—1833.

Garrison advises this lady as to opening a School for colored girls in Canterbury, Conn., and his comments on her consequent persecution expose him to fresh libel suits. He is sent by the New England A. S. Society on a mission to England, to collect funds for a Manual Labor School for colored youth, and to head off a Colonization agent, Elliott Cresson. On passing through Connecticut he is pursued by the sheriff with writs, and in New York is also in danger of kidnapping by Southern emissaries. He escapes both perils, and embarks for England in May.


In the third week of January, 1833, Mr. Garrison received the following letter from a country village in Windham County, Connecticut:

Prudence Crandall to W. L. Garrison.

Canterbury, Jan. 18th, 1833.
1 Mr. Garrison: I am to you, sir, I presume, an entire stranger, and you are indeed so to me save through the medium of the public print. I am by no means fond of egotism, but the circumstances under which I labor forbid my asking a friend to write for me; therefore I will tell you who I am, and for what purpose I write. I am, sir, through the blessing of divine Providence, permitted to be the Principal of the Canterbury (Conn.) Female Boarding School. I received a considerable part of my education at the Friends' Boarding School, Providence, R. I. In 1831 I purchased a large dwelling-house2 in the centre of this village, and opened the school above mentioned. Since I commenced I have met with all the encouragement I ever anticipated, and now have a flourishing school.

Now I will tell you why I write you, and the object is this: I wish to know your opinion respecting changing white scholars for colored ones. I have been for some months past determined


1 Ms.

2 Sold in consequence of the recent death of its owner, Luther Paine. It stood on the southwest corner of the Norwich and Worcester turnpike, at the crossing of the Hartford and Providence turnpike, and overlooked Canterbury Green. On the opposite (northwest) corner stood the handsome new house of Andrew T. Judson. See p. 1 of the Providence Evening Bulletin, Dec. 30, 1880, and Vol. 2, p. 490, of Larned's “History of Windham County.”

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