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[463] favored Syracuse, but am more and more convinced that Cleveland is better. If, however, you still doubt, and think it worth while to call a meeting of our committee, please inform me without delay, and I will appoint one. We must have one in a week or so at any rate, to prepare the list of names for publication.

The financial panic which has made the year 1857 memorable, and which began in September with the failure of an Ohio banking institution, frustrated the scheme for holding the Convention.

W. L. Garrison to Samuel J. May.

Boston, October 18, 1857.
1 In view of the earthquake shock which all the business operations of the country have received, and the absorption of all minds in the deep pecuniary embarrassments of the times,— and, therefore, the palpable inexpediency of attempting to hold a Convention of the Free States (as hitherto contemplated) at Cleveland, on the 28th and 29th inst.,—Mr. Higginson, Mr. Phillips, and myself, after grave and serious consideration, have assumed the responsibility of postponing our projected Northern2 Convention until a more auspicious period—at the same time, letting an informal convention be held at Cleveland at the time specified, of such as can make it convenient to be present, so as not to create too great a local disappointment. All our Agents will be there, and no doubt they will make it a stirring meeting. But, in the present paralyzed state of things, it would be absurd3 to try to secure anything like a representation from the several States, and so we shall go for postponing the Northern Convention. I am the more reconciled to this because Phillips could not have gone to it, if it had been held this month.

Theodore Parker, Phillips, Higginson, etc., will send letters to the meeting at Cleveland, expressive of their views on the Disunion question, which will help to mitigate the disappointment that will be felt by our Ohio friends at their non-attendance. I shall also send a letter; and I hope you will do the same, in case you shall conclude not to go to Cleveland, after what I have written.

The panic greatly crippled the regular operations of the anti-slavery societies, and forced a reduction of

1 Ms.

2 Lib. 27.170.

3 Lib. 27:[178].

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