upon my arrival at the very crisis of the antislavery cause in England. He informed me that a large number of delegates, from various anti-slavery societies in the kingdom, were then in London, vigilantly watching the progress of the Abolition Bill through Parliament; that they took breakfast together every morning at the Guildhall Coffee House, and from thence adjourned to the anti-slavery rooms at No. 18, Aldermanbury, for the purpose of devising plans and discussing propositions for the accomplishment of their grand design; and that if I would attend, he would give me a general introduction. My heart was full of gratitude to him for his kindness, and to God for ordering events in a manner so highly auspicious. Accordingly, I was prompt in my attendance at the Coffee House the next morning. About sixty delegates were present, most of whom were members of the Society of Friends.1 After the reading of a portion of the Scriptures, breakfast was served up, at the close of which Mr. Cropper rose and begged leave to introduce to the company William Lloyd Garrison, the Agent of the New-England Anti-Slavery Society, from America. He then briefly stated the object of my mission, and expressed a hope that I would be permitted, at a suitable opportunity, to lay my purposes more fully before them. This request was afterwards readily granted. They individually gave me a generous welcome, and evinced a deep interest to learn the state of public opinion in the United States in relation to the subject of slavery and the merits of the American Colonization Society.A further glimpse of the conferences at Aldermanbury is given in a letter to the Board of Managers, dated London, June 20, 1833:
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It is remarkable that while the Friends in England have been the courageous pioneers, the undaunted standard-bearers, in the anti-slavery conflict, and have liberally expended their wealth, and given their time and talents, to achieve a victory more splendid than any yet recorded in the pages of history, those in this country [United States], as a body, seem to have degenerated from their parent-stock, to have measurably lost their primitive spirit on the subject of slavery, and to have become ensnared by wicked prejudices, and by a cruel scheme to banish our colored population from their native to a foreign and barbarous land. There are many noble exceptions to this remark; and I am confident that ere long the example of the Friends in England will stimulate the great mass of those who reside in this country to “go and do likewise.”
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