In that, I am charged truly.
I have been an abolitionist from my early years, and I always expect to remain so. For this, I am prosecuted and persecuted.
I most sincerely believe that slavery is the greatest sin the Lord Almighty ever suffered to exist upon this earth.
As sure as God is good and just, he will put an end to it; and all opposition will be in vain.
As regards myself, I can only say, that having lived three-score and nearly ten years, with a character that placed me above suspicion in such matters as have been urged against me, I cannot now forego the principles which have always influenced my conduct in relation to slavery.
Neither force on the one hand, nor persuasion on the other, will ever alter my course of action.’
One of the New-York
papers, commenting on this speech, at the time, states that ‘the old gentleman was listened to very attentively.
He was composed, dignified, and clear in his manner, and evidently had much effect on the court and a large number of spectators.
He certainly needed no counsel to aid him.’
The court ordered a nolle prosequi
to be entered, and the defendants were all discharged.
The suit for the reward proceeded no further.
had been early discharged, and the whole case had been completely before the public in pamphlet form;