previous next

Chapter 12: American Anti-slavery Society.—1833.

Garrison finds a mob prepared for him on landing in New York, and a would-be mob in Boston. Visiting Canterbury, he is served with the delayed libel writs, but is never brought to trial. In December he effects the organization at Philadelphia of a National Anti-slavery Society, of which he draws up the Declaration of sentiments.

Time would vindicate the essentially patriotic service which Mr. Garrison had rendered by cementing the alliance between British philanthropy and American abolitionism; but, for the moment, his faithful exposure of the national guilt of slaveholding—his ‘washing dirty linen abroad’—caused him to be looked upon at home as the detractor and enemy of his country. Not only what he had himself said in Exeter Hall, but O'Connell's contemptuous treatment of the colonization ‘humbug,’ and tremendous denunciation of American slave-owners, were treasured up against his return. The colonization organs sedulously fanned the public heat caused by the wounding of the national amour propre, and the mind of the respectable classes was prepared for any form of popular resentment against Mr. Garrison by the publication, in the Boston Daily Advertiser and in Niles' Register, while he was still afloat, of Harrison Gray Otis's letter to a South Carolinian, already referred to. Cresson, too,1 had written to the N. Y. Commercial Advertiser: ‘I have2 only time by this packet to tell thee that Garrison and the Anti-Slavery Society are fully employed in endeavoring to crush me, hunt the Colonization Society out of the country, and vilify our national character.’

The flame broke out by reason of an ‘unpremeditated3 coincidence’ for which Mr. Garrison was in no wise responsible. Notices of a public meeting to form that New York City Anti-Slavery Society which he had effectively encouraged on his departure, were read from the4

1 Ante, p. 242.

2 Lib. 3.151.

3 Lib. 3.163.

4 Lib. 3.161.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Niles (Michigan, United States) (1)
Canterbury (Connecticut, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
W. L. Garrison (5)
Lib (3)
Harrison Gray Otis (1)
Daniel O'Connell (1)
Elliott Cresson (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1833 AD (1)
December (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: