Chapter 7: first Western tour.—1847.A too laborious lecture engagement with Frederick Douglass begins in midsummer in Pennsylvania, and ends, at Cleveland, Ohio, with Garrison's prostration with fever, at the im-minent peril of his life.
Early in 1847, Mr. Garrison was solicited by the1 abolitionists of Ohio to visit their section of the country; and in the Liberator of March 19 he gave notice that he would spend the month of August in that State.2 This decision led to numerous invitations from friends in3 Central New York, as well as in Pennsylvania, along the two lines of Western travel. The programme, as finally made up, chose the Southern route for the outward trip, and the Northern for the homeward.4 The intervening months were spent in the usual manner —in editorial drudgery, in occasional lecturing, in attendance at the three great anniversaries in Boston and New York. Opposition to the Mexican War, and reiterated5 appeals for a peaceable dissolution of the Union, were the regular anti-slavery work of the year, to which was added support of the Wilmot Proviso, or the attempt in Congress6 to ensure freedom to the territory certain to be acquired, by force or purchase, of Mexico. In Massachusetts, little was needed to maintain the Legislature in its attitude of7 aversion to the war, or to procure its endorsement of the Proviso; but to disunion it of course turned a cold8 shoulder. As usual, too, Mr. Garrison's lecture topics embraced religion and peace as well as abolition; and in the philanthropic anniversary month we have a glimpse of him amid kindred spirits. The Rev. Samuel May, Jr.,9 writes to Mary Carpenter from Boston, May 29, 1847: