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[413]

Of the three-score signers of the Declaration not one was a woman. Such was the custom of the times, in regard to the public relation of the sexes, that Lucretia Mott and her Quaker sisters did not ask or expect to sign; the male delegates—even the members of their own sect—did not think to invite them. It was a significant mark of liberality that they had been permitted to participate in the proceedings of the Convention on an equal footing in other respects. Moreover, on Mr. Garrison's motion, seconded by Dr. Cox, it was resolved on this third day ‘that the cause of Abolition eminently deserves the countenance and support of American women,’ after the British example. By other resolutions, ‘the ladies' anti-slavery societies’ already in existence were hailed ‘as the harbinger of a brighter day,’ and more were called for. In still another, moved by Dr. Cox and seconded by William Goodell, the Convention presented ‘their thanks to their female friends for the deep interest they have manifested in the Anti-slavery cause’ during the long and fatiguing sessions. And finally, Miss Crandall was assured of approval, sympathy and aid. Resolutions relating to free produce; the recreancy of a pro-slavery clergy; the guilt of withholding the Bible from slaves; colored conventions and societies for mutual improvement, and the like—concluded the business of the Convention. Beriah Green dismissed the assembly in words of thrilling solemnity, never to be forgotten by those who heard him, and ending ‘in a prayer to Almighty God, full of fervor and feeling, imploring his blessing and sanctification upon the Convention and its labors.’ So ended the successful attempt to give a national basis to the movement begun only three years before by the publication of the Liberator.1

1 A public debate between R. S. Finley and Prof. Elizur Wright had taken place on the evenings of Dec. 5 and 6, and it was the design of the Colonizationists to follow the Convention closely with a great meeting of their own, but they broke down. ‘David Paul Brown, Esq., was to have made a speech, but failed them, in consequence of a letter from Purvis’ (Ms. Dec. 12, 1833, Dr. Cox to W. L. G.).

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