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[91] Phillips, Caroline Weston, and myself. We urged that the removal was to all intents and purposes a dissolution; that it would be but the Mass. Society with another name; that it was unnecessary to give pro-slavery and New Organization such a triumph; that the nominal existence of the Society had better be maintained at N. Y., if all it did was to print the Standard, etc. Notwithstanding and nevertheless, the proposition would probably have been carried, had I not meekly suggested the prudence of first ascertaining whether, in case of a removal of the Society, the services of the Boston friends on whom they depended would be secured; for that I thought, from what I knew of their opinions, that they regarded the measure as so unwise that they would decline taking office. Wendell1 confirmed what I said.

This was an unexpected damper. Garrison dilated his nostrils like a war-horse, and snuffed indignation at us. ‘If the Boston friends were unwilling to take the trouble and responsibility, then there was nothing more to be said; we must try to get along as well as we could in the old way,’ etc. Any unwillingness to take trouble and responsibility was of course disclaimed, but the necessity of their acting on their own ideas of what was best affirmed. At this crisis, Thomas Earle of Philadelphia proposed, as something that would combine efficiency with the preservation of our old front to the enemy, that a quorum of the Committee should be appointed in Boston, and the business done there.2 This seemed to satisfy everybody and was adopted.

The appointment of Garrison as President was, I think, an excellent idea, and it was entirely ‘my thunder.’ He ‘nolo episcopari'd’ a little at first, but was prevailed upon to accept the crown. Garrison makes an excellent president at a public meeting where the order of speakers is in some measure arranged, as he has great felicity in introducing and interlocuting remarks; but at a meeting for debate he does not answer so well, as he is rather too apt, with all the innocence and simplicity in the world, to do all the talking himself. This, however, we shall arrange by having Francis Jackson to act as V. P. on such occasions. It seemed necessary to do something to define the position of the Am. Society, as Lewis Tappan had

1 W. Phillips.

2 This was, in effect, to acknowledge and confirm the leadership of the ‘Mass. Board (which, with all due modesty be it said, gives the tone to the anti-slavery of the country)’ (Ms. Jan. 30, 1844, E. Quincy to R. D. Webb.)

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