now to be aimed at is the formation of a National Anti-Slavery Society, after which auxiliary associations may be multiplied without difficulty.’
One such association he found hesitating to form itself in New York City, on account of a hostile and lawless public sentiment.
be organized, he said, and his words gave the needed resolution.1
For the national organization, not only his inspiration but his presence was deemed indispensable.
So, all adieus uttered, every duty discharged, and every care removed,2
the special agent
of the New-England Anti-Slavery Society sailed out of the harbor of New York
on the second day of May, 1833.3
A young man, not yet twenty-eight; without means or social standing or a numerous following; despised, hated, hunted with a price upon his head; armed only with the blessings of an outcast race and the credentials of an insignificant body of ‘fanatics,’ was to present himself before the honorable, powerful, and world-famous advocates of British emancipation—before Clarkson
—in the midst of their parliamentary triumph, and before the British
public, in opposition to a society which, with all its lying pretences, could truthfully say of itself through its emissary, Cresson
, that it had the support of the wealth, the respectability and the piety of the American
If ever a sense of personal littleness and deficiency was natural, it was here.
But on the other hand the task was less formidable than that which the youth was leaving behind him; the potency of the truth was the same on both sides of the Atlantic
; already acquaintances and