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[365] of master and slave, picture all the dreadful possibilities. Unquestionably, too, it made the fugitive slave safer and more welcome in his Northern transit, and the Fugitive Slave Law more loathed and more difficult of execution. But it did not produce a spontaneous and overpowering popular demonstration in favor of the repeal of the law, a petition en masse, or in fact materially strengthen the steady work of the abolitionists in that direction. The law remained intact till the Rebellion made it obsolete.

Neither did “Uncle Tom” recruit the abolition ranks to any appreciable extent, for reasons assigned by Mr. Garrison in a speech at West Chester, Pa., on October 26, 1852:

A great deal is said at the present time, and perhaps not too much, in regard to the Fugitive Slave Law. Many persons glory in their hostility to it, and upon this capital they set up an antislavery reputation. But opposition to that law is no proof in itself of anti-slavery fidelity. That law is merely incidental to slavery, and there is no merit in opposition which extends no further than to its provisions. Our warfare is not against slave-hunting alone, but against the existence of slavery. Penn. Freeman.

What is stranger, perhaps, “Uncle Tom” did not tell on the vote of the anti-slavery political party in this Presidential year, 1852. To this party we must now give some attention, beginning with a retrospect. ‘Nothing,’ said the editor of the Liberator, in January, 1849, “can be more superficial or more destitute of principle than the Free Soil movement” Lib. 19.6, 7.; and at the annual meeting of the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society in the same month, Wendell1 Phillips moved a resolve that abolitionists could not look2 on the Free Soil Party as an anti-slavery party in any proper sense of the term. Of the Liberty Party papers which had turned Free Soil in order to survive, Mr. Garrison declared that they had all lost vigor and anti-slavery character, and that “their latter state is worse than their former; and that was deplorable enough.” Lib. 19.6, [94]. In this year the Barnburner element in New York returned to its3 natural alliance with the Hunker Democrats, while in

1 Jan. 24-26.

2 Lib. 19.19.

3 Lib. 19.154, 178.

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