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eman. A hall had been erected by the antislavery people and other reformers, and was first opened on May 15, 1838. There was an address by the eminent lawyer, David Paul Brown, and a poem of a hundred and fifty lines by Whittier, whose publishing office was in the building. It was not one of his best poems, and he excluded it from his complete edition; but it was enough, with other things, to call out the gradually increasing wrath of a mob which hooted, yelled, and broke windows. On the third day the president of the Pennsylvania Hall Association called for the intervention of the mayor and sheriff. About sunset the mayor replied that, if the building were vacated and given into his possession, he would disperse the rioters. The keys were given up to him, and he addressed the mob as Fellow-citizens. Deprecating disorder in general terms, he added: There will be no meeting here this evening. The house has been given up to me. The managers had the right to hold the meeting, but
d the curtain was known to very few, it remained a mystery to all except the abolitionists. Underwood's Whittier, pp. 118-20. Garrison wrote of the Concord mob to his brother-in-law, Sept. 12, 1835, Our brother Thompson had a narrow escape from the mob at Concord, and Whittier was pelted with mud and stones, but he escaped bodily damage. Thompson wrote to Garrison, Sept. 15:-- You would have been delighted to have shared our adventures in Concord (?) on the memorable night of the 4th inst. The mirthful and the melancholy were so strangely and equally blended throughout, that I scarcely know which had the advantage, and certainly could not tell the story of our hairbreadth 'scapes without exciting your risibility. However, my escape from the ignorant and murderous rabble that clamoured and thirsted for my blood was very providential, and I desire to feel grateful to Him who I believe watches over our persons and our cause, and will restrain the malice of our foes, or cause
ouse, the doors were protected by chains. In July, 1854, Whittier was invited by Ralph Waldo Emerson and others, to attend a meeting of the friends of freedom in Boston, to form a new party organization, from men from both political folds; this being one of the meetings which led to the formation of the Republican party. His reply, addressed to Emerson ( Amesbury, 3rd 7th month ), was as follows:-- The circular signed by thyself and others, inviting me to meet you at Boston on the 7th inst., has just reached me. If I am able to visit Boston on that day, I shall be glad to comply with the invitation. Your movement I regard as every way timely and expedient. I am quite sure good will come of it, in some way. I have been for some time past engaged in efforts tending to the same object,--the consolidation of the antislavery sentiment of the North. For myself, I am more than willing to take the humblest place in a new organization made up from Whigs, anti-Nebraska Democrats, an
ich was translated several years ago in French by Professor de Felice, of Montauban, and of which there is also an excellent Italian translation made by M. Giovanni Nicolini, Professor of our College at Torre Pellice. There is not a single Vaudois who has received any education who cannot repeat from memory The Vaudois Colporteur in French or in Italian. The members of the Synod of the Vaudois Church assembled to the number of about seventy at a pastoral banquet, on Thursday evening, the 9th inst., and unanimously voted the motion which I had the honour of proposing, viz.: That we should send a very warm Christian fraternal salutation to the author of The Vaudois Colporteur. I was intrusted with the duty of conveying this salutation to you — a duty which I fulfil with joy, expressing at the same time our gratitude to you, and also our wish to receive, if possible, from yourself the original English, which is still unknown to us, of this piece of poetry, which we so justly prize. A
ur assumed superiority to imitate the horror and wide-orbed consternation of Mr. Bumble and his parochial associates, on a similar occasion. Later, when the movement had got farther on, and he was invited to a convention on the subject, held at Newport, R. I., on Aug. 25, 1869, he replied thus explicitly and also wisely:-- Amesbury, Mass., 12th, 8th Month, 1869. I have received thy letter inviting me to attend the Convention in behalf of Woman's Suffrage, at Newport, R. I., on the 25th inst. I do not see how it is possible for me to accept the invitation; and, were I to do so, the state of my health would prevent me from taking such a part in the meeting as would relieve me from the responsibility of seeming to sanction anything in its action which might conflict with my own views of duty or policy. Yet I should do myself great injustice if I did not embrace this occasion to express my general sympathy with the movement. I have seen no good reason why mothers, wives, and dau
January 8th (search for this): chapter 8
in general was never better shown than in his prompt response to the announcement of certain limitations placed by George Peabody on the church built largely by his money in Georgetown, Mass. The facts were first brought to light by the New York Independent on Jan. 16, 1868, by the following statement:-- A Marred Memorial. Mr. George Peabody, the banker, gave money for the erection of the Memorial Church in Georgetown, Mass., the town of his birth. The church was dedicated on the 8th of January, with interesting exercises, one of the striking features of which was the singing of the following hymn, written for the occasion by John G. Whittier. . . . We venture to say that if the poet had known the conditions which the banker saw fit to impose on the Memorial Church, the poem would never have been written, and its author's name would never have been lent to the occasion. A correspondent of the Independent writes: Mr. Peabody says in his letter that the church shall never be use
January 30th (search for this): chapter 8
of the Independent writes: Mr. Peabody says in his letter that the church shall never be used for any lectures, discussions of political subjects, or other matters inconsistent with the gospel. I do not give his precise words, but this is the substance. The church will be deeded to the society on the express condition that neither Liberty nor Temperance, nor any other subject of Reform, shall ever be introduced into the pulpit. Mr. Whittier published a card in the Boston Transcript of Jan. 30, as follows:-- In writing the Hymn for the Memorial Church at Georgetown, the author, as his verses indicate, has sole reference to the tribute of a brother and sister to the memory of a departed mother,--a tribute which seemed and still seems to him, in itself considered, very beautiful and appropriate; but he has since seen, with surprise and sorrow, a letter read at the dedication, imposing certain extraordinary restrictions upon the society which is to occupy the house. It is due
in his soul. Mrs. Fields's Whittier, pp. 50-51. It is an interesting fact that one of the best pictures ever drawn of Whittier in his home life is that drawn by Hayne, the Southern poet, who once visited him. So 'neath the Quaker poet's tranquil roof, From all deep discords of the world aloof, I sit once more and measured converse hold, With him whose nobler thoughts are rhythmic gold; See his deep brows half-puckered in a knot, O'er some hard problem of our mortal lot, Or a dream soft as May winds of the south, Waft a girl's sweetness 'round his firm, set mouth. Or, should he deem wrong threats the public weal, Lo, the whole man seems girt with flashing steel; His glance a sword-thrust and his words of ire, Like thunder tones from some old prophet's lyre. Or by the hearthstone, when the day is done, Mark swiftly lanced a sudden shaft of fun; The short quick laugh, the smartly smitten knees, Are all sure tokens of a mind at ease. God's innocent pensioners in the woodland dim, T
the ground-mole sinks his well; How the robin feeds her young, How the oriole's nest is hung; Where the whitest lilies blow, Where the freshest berries grow, Where the ground-nut trails its vine, Where the wood-grape's clusters shine; And the architectural plans Of gray hornet artisans!-- For, eschewing books and tasks, Nature answers all he asks; Hand in hand with her he walks, Face to face with her he talks, Part and parcel of her joy; Blessings on the barefoot boy! O for boyhood's time of June, Crowding years in one brief moon, When all things I heard or saw Me, their master, waited for! I was rich in flowers and trees, Humming-birds and honey-bees; For my sport the squirrel played, Plied the snouted mole his spade; For my taste the blackberry cone Purpled over hedge and stone; Laughed the brook for my delight, Through the day and through the night Whispering at the garden wall, Talked with me from fall to fall; Mine the sand-rimmed pickerel pond, Mine the walnut slopes beyond, Mi
June 14th (search for this): chapter 9
much in that direction, but I remember an occasion when an emperor once visited him. While Dom Pedro II., formerly emperor of Brazil, was in the United States in 1876, I had the pleasure of meeting him at George Bancroft's house in Newport, R. I., and remember well the desire that he expressed to see Whittier, and the comparative indifference with which he received our conversation on all other subjects. He had, it seems, translated Whittier's Cry of a lost soul into Portuguese. When, on June 14, they met at the Radical Club, at Rev. J. T. Sargent's, on Chestnut Street, the interview was thus described in Mrs. Sargent's record of the club:-- When the emperor arrived, the other guests had already assembled. Sending up his card, his Majesty followed it with the quickness of an enthusiastic schoolboy; and his first question, after somewhat hastily paying his greetings, was for Mr. Whittier. The poet stepped forward to meet his imperial admirer, who would fain have caught him i
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