Chapter 13: the Bible Convention.—1853.Garrison revisits the West, and attends a large number of conventions; in particular, that at Hartford, Conn., to discuss the authority of the Scriptures, called by Andrew Jackson Davis, and mobbed by divinity students. His reputation among sectarians on both sides of the Atlantic suffers a still further decline. Friendly correspondence as to his heresy with Harriet Beecher Stowe.
From among a dozen conventions which make the year 1853 memorable in Mr. Garrison's career, we choose for a caption the one that most affected his popular reputation. Theologically, his progress had been (from the orthodox point of view) steadily downward. The Chardon-Street Convention of 1840-41 had shown him1 willing to discuss the sanctity of the Sabbath, the Ministry, and the Church. The Anti-Sabbath Convention of2 1848 marked the change from inquiry to open opposition to Sabbatarianism. The Hartford Bible Convention gave public notice of his abandonment of the common view of the inspiration of the Scriptures in which he had been bred. This, though not the lowest possible stage of descent—for an Anti-Bible Convention or Society was conceivable—was practically to touch bottom, and left nothing to be desired by his clerical detractors. The first quarter of the year had been spent in and about Boston, but by the middle of April Mr. Garrison began his labors in the more distant fields. An antislavery convention had been called in Cincinnati for April 19, 1853, by the women of that city, and he was invited to attend. The scene was new to him, and he3 could visit on the way the friends in Cleveland to whom he had owed his life in 1847. On the day appointed he stood on the banks of the Ohio, and beheld for the first time the slave-cursed soil of Kentucky. For him the stream was perilously narrow, yet words of welcome and of fellowship had been sped across it from an exholder,  Cassius M. Clay, living yonder in a perpetual state of siege, and carrying his life in his hands. He had, while a student at Yale, in June, 1831, heard Mr. Garrison's discourse at New Haven against Colonization,4 and then and there resolved to make relentless war on the institution of slavery. Meantime, he had emancipated his slaves and preached abolition, at all hazards to5 his person and property; joined in the Mexican War by a monstrous aberration of principle as of judgment, yet6 holding fast to his main purpose to make Kentucky free; and furnished an example without a parallel both of heroism and of the folly of attempting to undermine the Slave Power from within, even with its own weapons of violence—in other words, of ‘going South,’ as the abolitionists were taunted with not doing. A constant reader of the Liberator, and invited, like its editor, to7 attend the Cincinnati Convention, he wrote to the committee:
You say W. L. Garrison will be present. I wish to say a word of that man. As a man, he stands first among living men, because he has labored most of all in that cause which is of most worth to mankind. It is not for me to say whether, with equal firmness and sensibility to the Right, he might or might not have done more service in a great cause! It is enough that, with whatever talent was loaned him by Deity, with that he has zealously, at all hazard of all things, contended for the highest interests of men. The day for his appreciation has not come! There is, however, one saying of his traducers, and the traducers of those who act with him, which I will notice—that they have set back the cause of emancipation by agitation! Nothing is more false. The cause of emancipation advances only with agitation: let that cease, and despotism is complete. The slaveholders have just as much intention of yielding up their slaves as the sum of the kings of the earth have of laying down, for the benefit of the people, their sceptres! How long will, without agitation, kingdoms last? Lib. 23.70.At the Convention, Mr. Garrison met, not Clay, indeed, but another abolition Southerner, the Rev. John Rankin, whose ‘Letters’ had stirred him as his own New Haven8  discourse had fired Clay, and to whom he now renewed his public acknowledgments as a disciple. Since the9 economic evils of slavery had been forcibly pointed out in that work, it was meet that Mr. Garrison (in sight, too, and almost within hearing of thriftless Kentucky) should offer the following among other resolutions:
Resolved, That the abolitionists of this country are as much interested in the welfare, prosperity, and safety of the slaveholders as they are in the liberation and elevation of the slaves; that, in the abolition of the entire slave system, no actual property will be impaired or destroyed, but every kind of property will be enhanced and improved in value; that freedom is industrious, economical, enterprising, and fertile in useful expedients and beneficent discoveries, while slavery is indolent, wasteful, turning into barrenness the most fruitful soil, or paralyzing all the inventive and progressive faculties; and that emancipation can be as triumphantly defended on the ground of political economy and material prosperity, as it can be on moral and religious principle. Lib. 23.70.The Western tour was to have been prolonged to Michigan, but a sharp pleuritic attack confined Mr. Garrison to his bed and made return imperative—to the great disappointment of those who were expecting him at10 Adrian. Not more than a fortnight's rest, however, was allowed him in Boston, for the American Anti-Slavery Society was to hold its anniversary once more in New York city. In the interval, he attended on May 5 a dinner given in Boston by the Free Democracy to John P. Hale,11 whose Senatorial term had expired and his place been filled by Charles G. Atherton, of ‘gag’ memory. Mr.12 Hale's political attitude towards slavery, under the compromises of the Constitution, certainly had not been acceptable to the abolitionists; but his solitary courage amid a contemptuous and murderous pro-slavery body like the Senate of the United States deserved, and had always received, recognition in the Liberator. Mr.13 Garrison, therefore, took his place without scruple beside Charles Sumner, John G. Palfrey, Horace Mann, Henry  Wilson, Anson Burlingame, Richard H. Dana, Jr., John Jay, and Joshua Leavitt. On Cassius Clay's offering the toast—‘The True Union: To Benton, to Bryant, to14 Seward, to Greeley, to Garrison, to Phillips, to Quincy— the union of all the opponents of the propaganda of slavery,’ there were loud calls for Garrison, who responded with peculiar felicity, paying just tributes to Hale and to15 Clay,16 yet not forgetting his delenda est Carthago. ‘Ladies and Gentlemen,’ he began,
I am happy to be with17 you on this occasion. Whatever may be our peculiar views as to the best measures to be adopted, or the precise position to be occupied, one thing is true here—we are all “Hale fellows' (enthusiastic applause); and, what is better still, ” Hale fellows well met. “ (Continued cheers.) It is not often that antislavery men are in a majority. (Applause.) I believe we have it all our own way here this evening. It is not possible that there can be a single pro-slavery man or woman in this vast assembly; and I will prove it. Allow me to put it to vote. As many here as are in favor of the immediate and everlasting overthrow of slavery, will please to say Aye! (An almost universal shout of affirmation went up.) As many as are opposed to the abolition of slavery, will say No! (A few voices replied ” No!—evidently through a misconception of the speaker's remarks.) Sir, it is as I thought it would be—the Ayes have it! (Cheers and laughter.) And I hold that those who answered in the negative are bound, by their own rule of action, to come over to our side and make the vote unanimous; for pro-slavery in our country always is looking to majorities, and to be on the popular side. (Laughter and cheers.) . . . Sir, you will pardon me for the reference. I have heard something here about our Union, about the value of the Union, and the importance of preserving the Union. Gentlemen, if you have been so fortunate as to find a Union worth preserving, I heartily congratulate you. Cling to it with all your souls! For  myself, I have not been so fortunate. With a price set upon my head by one of the Southern States of the Union—outlawed everywhere in the slaveholding South for my hatred of slavery —you will pardon me if I am somewhat lacking in loyalty to the existing Union. (Laughter.) The Union! What is it? Where is it? Where, as the uncompromising friends of liberty, will you find protection under it? Gentlemen, look well to your language; use it intelligently and truly. The two great pro-slavery parties in the land join with you in glorifying this Union, and pledging to maintain it as a slavery-sustaining compact. If you use the term “Union” in the ordinary political sense, then I ask how it happens that you who are pledged to give [no] support to slavery are thus in perfect agreement with those parties? If you do not, then I ask where is the Union, and what do you mean by preserving it? Why, are you not conscious of the fact that in South Carolina, in Alabama, in any slaveholding State, this anti-slavery gathering would not be tolerated? We should all be deemed worthy of Lynch law, and in all probability be subjected to a coat of tar and feathers! What a glorious Union it is that we are enjoying! How worthy of preservation! Alas! the Union is but another name for the iron reign of the Slave Power. We have no common country, as yet. God grant we may have! We have no common Union, as yet. God grant we may have! We shall have it when the jubilee comes—and not till then.The American Anti-Slavery Society met in New York18 city at the Chinese Assembly Room on May 11, 1853, amid the utmost quiet. Calhoun, and Clay, and Webster had, as Mr. Garrison pointed out, been translated since 1850.19 Was there no one to give the signal to Rynders to save the Union once more by mobbing the abolitionists away for another term of years? Could Mr. Garrison, unchecked, mention as signs of progress the blotting out of those pillars of the Slave Power, the Jerry rescue, the armed stand against the Fugitive Slave Law at Christiana, the success of Uncle Tom's Cabin? So it appeared. Douglass, too, was there, but where was his “halfbrother” Ante, p. 294.? Dr. Furness's place was supplied by Henry Ward Beecher, who made his first speech on an abolition20  platform, not in complete sympathy, yet confessing that he would ‘choose dismemberment and liberty, sooner than Union and slavery.’ The best-considered and most effective speech of Mr. Garrison's during the year was that delivered at the New21 England Convention in Boston on May 26. It expounded the constitution and philosophy of the anti-slavery movement, proved its catholicity, and vindicated the criticism meted out on its platform to all who took their stand on it. In form, scope, and strictness of reasoning it was a classical production. But we must pass it by, for the Bible Convention is only a week off. In the Liberator of April 22, 1853, appeared a call to22 the friends of free discussion, ‘without distinction of sex, color, sect, or party,’ to meet at Hartford, Conn., on Thursday, June 2, to Sunday, June 5, ‘for the purpose of freely and fully canvassing the origin, authority, and influence of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures.’ It was signed by Andrew Jackson Davis, William Green, Jr., and William P. Donaldson. Mr. Green we have already met at the founding of the American Anti-Slavery23 Society. Mr. Davis was definable in a single word as a ‘seer,’ or prophet, possessed of clairvoyant powers,24 and sometimes styled the ‘Great Harmonian,’ in allusion to25 the principal work embodying his philosophy. He was commonly classed among Spiritualists, though not strictly in line with them, and his admirers were Spiritualists for the most part. He had risen from a very humble origin26 without education, and manifested considerable gifts of style as a writer. His manners were amiable, gentle, and attractive. Henry C. Wright accounted him “a Jesus of this day.” Lib. 23.64. Mr. Garrison gave his open approval to the call not27 long after its appearance, lent his signature to it, and consented to take part in the proceedings. He shared  the hospitality of the Davises with H. C. Wright, Parker28 Pillsbury, and Joseph Barker, the last-named being chosen to preside over the Convention. Barker had apparently taken permanent leave of his native England, having purchased a farm in Ohio and removed thither with his29 family. On his preliminary visit to this country he had received from Mr. Garrison in Boston attentions like those30 he had bestowed in England. Once settled, he identified himself with the abolitionists, writing copiously for the31 Liberator, and finding there admission (which Edmund Quincy denied to it in the Liberty Bell) for an article32 showing that; since the Bible sanctioned slavery, the book must be demolished as a condition precedent to emancipation. In November, 1852, he had been prime mover in a Bible Convention held at Salem, Ohio,33 concerning which he reported to Mr. Garrison that the34 meetings had been crowded, with just enough opposition. At Hartford, likewise, there was a very full attendance, but the opposition was certainly excessive. Not that the clergy of the city appeared in force to deprecate the proposed examination of the Bible, or to maintain its divine origin and authority. With a single exception, they held entirely aloof. The Rev. Joseph Turner, a local Second-Adventist preacher, and the Rev. George Storrs of35 Brooklyn, N. Y., belonging to the same despised denomination,36 alone had the courage of their opinions and stood up for the inspiration of the Bible. They were (considering merely their adversaries) very unequal to the task, yet they served as rallying-points to the disorderly elements in the galleries —notably the divinity students from the adjacent Trinity College. These, as Mr. Garrison testified—
attempted to break up the meeting by stamping, shouting,37 yelling, groaning, grunting, hissing, mocking, cursing, whistling, making indecent and insulting expressions, on one occasion turning off the gas and extinguishing the lights, so that the meeting was for some time compelled to suspend its proceedings, and behaving throughout like a troop of demons let loose from the pit. Every appeal to their sense of propriety, to their  self-respect, was met derisively and with shouts of laughter. Even the Sabbath—their holy Sabbath—was no restraint on their38 rowdyism, so that it became necessary for the Mayor to be in attendance with a constabulary force. In the evening, so protracted and outrageous was their interruption, that an attempt was made to arrest one or two of the leading rioters, when a scene ensued that baffles description. The officers were violently assaulted, blows were freely interchanged, knives were drawn, and sword-canes were menacingly flourished, and it was not till two arrests had been made, with great difficulty, that anything like order was restored. And this was the best defence of the plenary inspiration of the Bible that pious, evangelical Hartford had to make on the occasion! After the adjournment, the theological ruffians (some of them the sons of Southern men-stealers and cradle-plunderers) gathered around the doors and took possession of the staircase, uttering foul language and insulting various persons; but the especial object of their murderous spite was “ Garrison! Garrison!” —and they vociferously exclaimed, “Where is Garrison?” “Bring him out!” “Put a halter about his neck!” —etc., etc.39 But we passed through them, unattended, and fortunately without injury—probably not being distinctly recognized.Strange to say, however, the worst and grossest of the interruptions were directed against a woman, Mrs. Ernestine L. Rose, of great dignity of carriage and of unusual40 ability. Mr. Garrison himself had escaped, even on Sunday evening, with slight discourtesy. “Notwithstanding the pointedness and cutting character of many of the remarks of Mr. Garrison,” Proceedings Hartford Bible Convention, p. 365. says the official report, ‘addressed more particularly to the turbulent, they were listened to with marked attention throughout, demonstrations of any kind being but very few.’ Argumentatively considered, they were not as weighty or, perhaps, as ‘dangerous’ (from the clerical point of view) as Joseph Barker's, who, as an ex-clergyman, had some advantages in a technical discussion. The pith of Mr. Garrison's speech lay in the resolutions with which he introduced it, and which incidentally attest the influence of his antislavery  experience on the development of his theological beliefs:
1st.—Resolved, That the doctrine of the American church41 and priesthood, that the Bible is the Word of God; that whatever it contains was given by Divine inspiration; and that it is the only rule of faith and practice, is self-evidently absurd, exceedingly injurious both to the intellect and soul, highly pernicious in its application, and a stumbling-block in the way of human redemption.42 2d.—Resolved, That this doctrine has too long been held as a potent weapon in the hands of time-serving commentators and designing priests, to beat down the rising spirit of religious liberty, and to discourage scientific development—to subserve the interests of blind guides and false teachers, and to fill all Christendom with contention and strife; and, therefore, the time has come to declare its untruthfulness, and to unmask those who are guilty of this imposture. 3d.—Resolved, That “the Word of God is not bound” either within the lids of any book, or by any ecclesiastical edict; but, like its Divine Author, was before all books, and is everywhere present, and from everlasting to everlasting—ever enunciating the same law, and requiring the same obedience, being “quick43 and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword” --the Bible itself being witness. 4th.—Resolved, That it is a secondary question as to when, where, or by whom the books of the Old and New Testaments were written; but the primary and all-important question is, What do they teach and command? And in order to ascertain this, they are to be as freely examined, and as readily accepted or rejected, as any other books, according as they are found worthless or valuable. 5th.—Resolved, That it is the climax of audacity and impiety for this nation to pretend to receive the Bible as the inspired Word of God, and then to make it a penal offence to give it to any of the millions who are held as chattel slaves on its soil, thus conspiring to make them miserable here and hereafter. 6th.—Resolved, That, judging them by their course of action toward all the reforms of the age, and their position in society,  the clergy of this country, as a body, would as readily burn the Bible to-morrow if public sentiment overwhelmingly demanded it, and persecution and loss of character should be the result of disobedience, as to-day they are found earnest in their endorsement of the plenary inspiration of that book, in accordance with public sentiment.Three other resolutions—exhibiting the impossibility of the Bible's being a consistent and unchanging rule of faith and practice, and the multifarious conflicting interpretations of it in the strife of ages, and the worthlessness of a profession of faith in it as a clew to character —were offered by Mr. Garrison on the last day. A single extract from his remarks on the first set, just cited in full, is all that we can indulge in—for its personal and prophetic bearing:
Sir, I know well the cost of an appearance in a Convention44 of this kind. I anticipate all that will be said, maliciously and opprobriously, on both sides the Atlantic, in regard to the resolutions which I have read in your hearing, and to my45 participancy in your proceedings. Already I hear the outcry of “Infidel! Infidel! Infidel!” on the part of those occupants of the pulpit who, while they are strong in their “coward's castle,” never dare to make their appearance on a free platform before the people. I know, moreover, it will be said that this is another evidence of the infidel character of the anti-slavery movement. I know that the American Anti-Slavery Society will, by the bigoted and pharisaical, by the designing and wicked, be held responsible for the sentiments I may utter on this occasion. Shall I, therefore, be dumb? Will it indeed injure the cause of the slave, so dear to my heart, for me to express my thoughts conscientiously about the Bible? I do not believe it. Have I any right to speak on any other subject than American slavery? or am I morally bound to give it my undivided attention? Why, sir, no freedom of speech or inquiry is conceded to me in this land. Am I not vehemently told, both at the North and at the South, that I have no right to meddle with the question of slavery? And my right to speak on any other subject, in opposition to public opinion, is equally denied to me; not, it is true, by the strong arm of Government, but by the cowardly and tyrannical in spirit. Now I stand here, not as an abolitionist, not to represent  the anti-slavery cause, but simply as a man, uttering my own thoughts, on my own responsibility; and, therefore, whoever shall avail himself of my presence here to make me odious as the advocate of the slave, or to subject any anti-slavery body to reproach on that account, will reveal himself in his true character—that of a bigot, a hypocrite, or a falsifier.Those who care may read the outpourings of the press, both secular and religious, on the ‘Infidel Convention,’ as grouped in the Liberator. The mob, as usual, found46 there its justification; and frightened editors even talked47 of securing legislative prohibition of such gatherings in the State of Connecticut, in view of the announcement48 that another Bible Convention would be held in January, 1854. An excursion to Flushing, Long Island, in August, to take part in the celebration of West India emancipation49 under the management of the New York City Anti-Slavery Society,50 broke for a moment Mr. Garrison's summer rest. By the end of the same month, he was on his way to New York to share in an extraordinary series of meetings crowded into a single week. In May a so-called World's Temperance Convention had been held in that city, under the customary clerical auspices, and, though51 consenting at first to admit certificated delegates from the Women's State Temperance Society, was convulsed by a motion to place one of them on the business committee. A hearing was refused to the women themselves, and they were finally excluded, as not contemplated in the call. A secession accordingly took place, led by the Rev. T. W. Higginson of Worcester, Mass. A fall meeting having been arranged for the same misnamed Convention, on September 6, 7, a counter Whole World's Temperance Convention was projected for September 1, 2, and Mr. Garrison was naturally among the signers of52 the latter call. He took a very subordinate part in the53  proceedings, in which the women were of right conspicuous. Few of the clergy were visible, and no dignitaries. On the next evening (Saturday), he witnessed the54 performance of Uncle Tom's Cabin at the National Theatre. On Sunday morning, he listened to a sermon delivered to a55 great audience in Metropolitan Hall by Miss Antoinette56 L. Brown.57 In the afternoon, he spoke in the same place58 before the New York City Anti-Slavery Society, and attended without addressing the evening meeting, towards the close of which, during the speeches of Lucy Stone, who ‘never acquitted herself better,’ and Lucretia Mott, the rowdyism led by the redoubtable Rynders became so rampant that the session was cut short. But ‘we are all in fine spirits,’ wrote Mr. Garrison to his wife. The59 programme for Monday was a meeting at the Tabernacle in60 aid of the Women's State Temperance Society; for61 Tuesday and Wednesday, a Woman's Rights Convention in62 the Tabernacle, parallel with the bastard World's63 Temperance Convention at Metropolitan Hall. The woman's rights movement, an outgrowth of the anti-slavery agitation, now first began to succeed to the obloquy, malevolence, and vulgar indignities which the earlier reform had drawn upon itself. All this had been foreshadowed in the anti-slavery experience of the64 Grimkes and of Abby Kelley Foster; but the organization of women in behalf of political equality, and the multiplication of them as speakers on public platforms, the ‘intrusion’ of them into the pulpit (as in the case of Miss Brown), renewed and intensified the persecution, in which, as formerly, the clergy took a leading part. The Bible was explicitly adduced to discredit the innovation, and the lowest ridicule was deemed justifiable as an aid to Scriptural anathema. The wearing of the Bloomer costume by some of the advocates of the cause furnished a ready occasion for this sort of opposition. The same journals, religious and secular, that nursed the mob spirit  for the suppression of abolitionism, provoked and fanned65 it for the Woman's Rights Convention at the Tabernacle in this first week of September, 1853. Mrs. Mott presided, and lent to the occasion all the defence that purity of life and charm of person and Quaker dignity could contribute; but in vain. The overruling of the rights of the promoters66 of the Convention and of the vast majority of the audience was unchecked, especially in the evening, although the police made a show of preserving order. Mr. Garrison appears to have spoken twice and to have been heard.67 ‘The land,’ he said,
is beginning to be convulsed. The68 opposition to the movement is assuming a malignant, desperate, and satanic character; every missile of wickedness that can be hurled against it is used. The pulpit is excited, the press is aroused; Church and State are in arms to put down a movement on behalf of justice to one-half of the whole human race. (Laughter and cheers.) The Bible, revered in our land as the inspired Word of God, is, by pulpit interpreters, made directly hostile to what we are endeavoring to obtain as a measure of right and justice; and the cry of infidelity is heard on the right hand and on the left, in order to combine public opinion so as to extinguish the movement. Now, beloved, let us not imagine that any strange thing has happened to us. We are but passing through one of the world's great crises; we, too, in our day, are permitted to contend with spiritual wickedness in high places—with principalities and powers. What reform was ever yet begun and carried on with any reputation in the day thereof? What reform, however glorious and divine, was ever advocated at the outset with rejoicing? And if they have called the Master of the house Beelzebub, how much more them of his household? (Cheers and stamping.) I have been derisively called a “Woman's Rights Man.” I know no such distinction. I claim to be a human Rights man; and wherever there is a human being, I see God-given rights inherent in that being, whatever may be the sex or complexion. To the excellence of the movement God has given witnesses in abundance, on the right hand and on the left. Show me a cause anathematized by the chief priests, the scribes, and the pharisees; which politicians and demagogues endeavor to crush; which reptiles and serpents in human flesh try to spread their  slime over, and hiss down, and I will show you a cause which God loves, and angels contemplate with admiration. Such is our movement.In the intervals of the sessions, he visited the World's Temperance Convention, where Wendell Phillips, a delegate, was endeavoring to obtain a hearing for Antoinette Brown, a fellow-delegate. Here the mob was in the governing body, especially the clerical portion of it, which descended to depths of shamelessness not exceeded by the69 gallery disturbers of the Woman's Rights Convention. ‘I have seen many tumultuous meetings in my day,’ reported70 Mr. Garrison subsequently,
but I think on no occasion have I ever seen anything more disgraceful to our common humanity than when Miss Brown attempted to speak upon the platform of the World's Temperance Convention, in aid of the glorious cause which had brought that Convention together.71 It was an outbreak of passion, contempt, indignation, and every vile emotion of the soul, throwing into the shade almost everything coming from the vilest of the vile that I have ever witnessed on any occasion or under any circumstances; venerable men, claiming to be holy men, the ambassadors of Jesus Christ, losing all self-respect and transforming themselves into the most unmannerly and violent spirits, merely on account of the sex of the individual who wished to address the assembly.On October 3, Mr. Garrison began a tour to the West72 with special reference to Michigan. Cleveland was his first halting-place, for there, on the 6th, 7th, and 8th of the month, the fourth National Woman's Rights Convention was to be held. He served on the business committee and was among the speakers, the nine sessions passing off73 with no sign of popular displeasure, though not without clerical disturbance.74 The first of seven resolutions from his pen read as follows:
Resolved, That the natural rights of one human being are75 those of every other, in all cases equally sacred and inalienable;  hence the boasted “Rights of man,” about which we hear so much, are simply the “Rights of Woman,” of which we hear so little; or, in other words, they are the Rights of Humanity, neither affected by, nor dependent upon, sex or condition.Adrian, Michigan, was reached on October 8.
W. L. Garrison to his Wife.To pass the time, on Sunday, October 16, Mr. Garrison92 crossed the Detroit River, and first set foot on Canadian soil at Windsor—a fit place, as it was largely populated  by fugitives from the United States. He walked also to the neighboring Sandwich, likewise a place of refuge from American tyranny, and ‘saw the barracks (formerly occupied by British soldiers) which, winter before last, were opened to shelter the crowd of fugitive slaves then hastening to that spot, to prevent them from perishing.’ Returning to Detroit, he addressed the colored citizens in the evening in one of their three churches, the Methodist, and was warmly received. Adrian was revisited on account of the State Anti-Slavery Convention appointed for October 22, 23, at which a Michigan Anti-Slavery Society was founded.93 Thence began Mr. Garrison's homeward journey by way of Ohio, the kindest of hosts being found in Joshua R.94 Giddings at Jefferson. Boston was reached early in November, but home had once more to be abandoned95 before the close of this restless year. The second decade of the American Anti-Slavery Society called for96 commemoration, in Philadelphia, on December 3 and 4. Mr. Garrison presided, Samuel J. May read once more the Declaration of Sentiments of 1833. Noticeable was the number of women speakers. Not less so was the drift of the remarks towards one topic—the public estimation of the abolitionists as infidels. On this head the following correspondence will be found instructive. Mrs. Stowe had returned in September from97 her foreign tour, during which, if she had been taken under the wing of the Glasgow female sectarian abolitionists, engaged at the very moment in advertising Mr.98 Garrison's infidelity, she had on the other hand been the guest99 of Mrs. Chapman in Paris.
W. L. Garrison to his Wife.
 W. L. Garrison to his Wife.
Harriet Beecher Stowe to W. L. Garrison.The letter to which the last of the above-quoted series is a rejoinder, may be read in full in the Liberator.  We select one passage to which Mrs. Stowe offers no reply:
Harriet Beecher Stowe to W. L. Garrison.
Harriet Beecher Stowe to W. L. Garrison.
Harriet Beecher Stowe to W. L. Garrison.
You say it is on the Bible you ground all your hopes of the113 liberties, not only of the slave, but of the whole human race. How does it happen, then, that, in a nation professing to place as high an estimate upon that volume as yourself, and denouncing as infidels all who do not hold it equally sacred, there are three millions and a half of chattel slaves, who are denied its possession, under severe penalties? Is not slavery sanctioned by the Bible, according to the interpretation of it by the clergy generally, its recognized expounders? What, then, does the cause of bleeding humanity gain by all this veneration for the book? My reliance for the deliverance of the oppressed universally is upon the nature of man, the inherent wrongfulness of oppression, the power of truth, and the omnipotence of God— using every rightful instrumentality to hasten the jubilee.Mrs. Stowe's line of argument will seem, to the readers of the present narrative from the beginning, somewhat anachronistic, as if (which was the truth) proceeding from one who knew nothing of Mr. Garrison's theological evolution, either in its hyperorthodox source or in the causes which led to his spiritual emancipation–such, for example, as are implied in the passage just reproduced. This was not to be learned by a single summer's study of the Liberator. The friendly meeting at Andover cannot be exactly dated, but it probably took place in the second week of December. ‘I was dreadfully afraid of your father,’ Mrs. Stowe has since said to one of Garrison's children;114 but the conference under her roof dispelled that feeling forever. His spirit captivated her as it had done many another of like prejudices. ‘You have,’ she wrote to him on December 12, 1853, ‘a remarkable tact at conversation.’115116