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[301] of the Society in their addresses, this pamphlet marks the first success in the agitation which ended in the abolition of slavery by civil war.1 Viewed in this light, and not merely as literature, it might not extravagantly be ranked as the most important work ever produced in America; to which Paine's Common sense affords the nearest parallel, without (in the nature of the case) approaching it in disinterestedness and moral fervor. The author himself said of it on the eve of a second edition, a year and a half after its appearance:

This work has excited extraordinary interest, both in this2 country and in England. “It has probably created more sensation,” says an able reviewer, “than any other pamphlet, except one, ponderous or light, which has issued from the modern press. To say nothing of its secret influence, it has brought many of the best friends of the Colonization Society to avow a suspense of judgment in regard to the merits of the scheme which they had patronized without misgiving for fifteen years; and it has raised up against it some uncompromising and by no ”

1 ‘I look upon the overthrow of the Colonization Society as the overthrow of slavery itself—they both stand or fall together.’ So wrote Mr. Garrison to Henry Benson, July 21, 1832, adding: ‘Thus far my “Thoughts on African Colonization” have been noticed by various newspapers and literary magazines in terms of high approbation; and I am gratified to find that they make a powerful impression wherever they are perused.’ The impression and the favorable comment were not confined to this country. Extracts from the Thoughts were freely made ‘in the most respectable periodical publications’ of England (Lib. 3.99). A formal review of it appeared in the British Eclectic Review, the organ of the Nonconformists, for Feb., 1833, p. 138. The work was eagerly greeted by the English philanthropists who had already begun to unmask and to thwart the Colonization agent, Elliott Cresson. It furnished the basis of Charles Stuart's “Prejudice Vincible” (Liverpool: printed by Egerton Smith & Co., 1832), reprinted with other matter in a pamphlet published by Garrison & Knapp in 1833, called “British Opinions of the American Colonization Society.” The preface to this pamphlet states that some 2750 copies of the Thoughts had been disposed of in nine months. For a British reply, see Dr. Thomas Hodgkin's “An Inquiry into the Merits of the American Colonization Society,” etc. (London: J. & A. Arch, 1833).

2 Lib. 3.207.

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