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[27] mild, gentle, and amiable. In spirit Mr. Garrison was completely in harmony with them. In details of language, of policy, he was free to differ from them.

Thus, at the New England Convention in May, 1841,1 Mr. Garrison's resolution in regard to the church read as follows:

Resolved, That among the responsible classes in the nonslaveholding States, in regard to the existence of slavery, the religious professions [professors], and especially the clergy, stand wickedly preeminent, and ought to be unsparingly exposed and reproved before all the people. Lib. 11.90.

To Henry C. Wright, however, it appeared that it should read as follows:

‘Resolved, That the church and clergy of the United States,2 as a whole, constitute a great brotherhood of Thieves,3 inasmuch as they countenance and support the highest kind of theft, i. e., man-Stealing; and duty to God and the slave4 demands of abolitionists that they should denounce them as the worst foes of liberty and pure religion, and forthwith renounce them as a Christian church and clergy.’

To this substitute rallied Parker Pillsbury, Stephen S. Foster, and N. P. Rogers, while Mr. Garrison and Charles C. Burleigh contended for the original formula; the debate raging long, with a drift toward the obnoxious expression in capitals, which was at last abandoned.5

So in a question of measures. At a quarterly meeting of the Massachusetts Society held at Millbury on August 17, 1841, Mr. Foster moved the following:6

‘Resolved, That we recommend to abolitionists as the most7 consistent and effectual method of abolishing the “negro pew,” ’

1 May 25.

2 Lib. 11.90.

3 See Mr. Wright's exposition of this expression in his letter to A. A. Phelps entitled, ‘The Methodist Episcopal Church and Clergy of the United States a Brotherhood of Men-Stealers’ (Lib. 11.130).

4 Ante, pp. 12, 13.

5 Speaking for himself, however, and not for the Society, Mr. Garrison presently declared ‘a great brotherhood of thieves’ tame language to apply to the action of the Presbyterian General Assembly at Philadelphia on May 20. The Committee of Bills and Overtures unanimously refused to report on the ‘exciting topic’ of slavery, and desired to return the papers on that subject to the presbyteries which had presented them. By an overwhelming vote the whole business was indefinitely postponed (Lib. 11: 95).

6 S. S. Foster.

7 Lib. 11.139.

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