Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books

The Anti-Slavery Examiner, Omnibus by American Anti-Slavery Society

Part 2 out of 52

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 6.2 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

Or shall we not rather say with the prophet, "the zeal of the Lord of
Hosts _will_ perform this?" Yes, his promises are sure, and amen in
Christ Jesus, that he will assemble her that halteth, and gather her
that is driven out, and her that is afflicted.

But I will now say a few words on the subject of Abolitionism. Doubtless
you have all heard Anti-Slavery Societies denounced as insurrectionary
and mischievous, fanatical and dangerous. It has been said they publish
the most abominable untruths, and that they are endeavoring to excite
rebellions at the South. Have you believed these reports, my friends?
have _you_ also been deceived by these false assertions? Listen to me,
then, whilst I endeavor to wipe from the fair character of Abolitionism
such unfounded accusations. You know that _I_ am a Southerner; you know
that my dearest relatives are now in a slave State. Can you for a moment
believe I would prove so recreant to the feelings of a daughter and a
sister, as to join a society which was seeking to overthrow slavery by
falsehood, bloodshed, and murder? I appeal to you who have known and
loved me in days that are passed, can _you_ believe it? No! my friends.
As a Carolinian, I was peculiarly jealous of any movements on this
subject; and before I would join an Anti-Slavery Society, I took the
precaution of becoming acquainted with some of the leading
Abolitionists, of reading their publications and attending their
meetings, at which I heard addresses both from colored and white men;
and it was not until I was fully convinced that their principles were
_entirely pacific_, and their efforts _only moral_, that I gave my name
as a member to the Female Anti-Slavery Society of Philadelphia. Since
that time, I have regularly taken the Liberator, and read many
Anti-Slavery pamphlets and papers and books, and can assure you I
_never_ have seen a single insurrectionary paragraph, and never read any
account of cruelty which I could not believe. Southerners may deny the
truth of these accounts, but why do they not _prove_ them to be false.
Their violent expressions of horror at such accounts being believed,
_may_ deceive some, but they cannot deceive _me_, for I lived too long
in the midst of slavery, not to know what slavery is. When _I_ speak of
this system, "I speak that I do know," and I am not at all afraid to
assert, that Anti-Slavery publications have _not_ overdrawn the
monstrous features of slavery at all. And many a Southerner _knows_ this
as well as I do. A lady in North Carolina remarked to a friend of mine,
about eighteen months since, "Northerners know nothing at all about
slavery; they think it is perpetual bondage only; but of the _depth of
degradation_ that word involves, they have no conception; if they had,
_they would never cease_ their efforts until so _horrible_ a system was
overthrown." She did not know how faithfully some Northern men and
Northern women had studied this subject; how diligently they had
searched out the cause of "him who had none to help him," and how
fearlessly they had told the story of the negro's wrongs. Yes,
Northerners know _every_ thing about slavery now. This monster of
iniquity has been unveiled to the world, her frightful features
unmasked, and soon, very soon will she be regarded with no more
complacency by the American republic than is the idol of Juggernaut,
rolling its bloody wheels over the crushed bodies of its prostrate
Victims.

But you will probably ask, if Anti-Slavery societies are not
insurrectionary, why do Northerners tell us they are? Why, I would ask
you in return, did Northern senators and Northern representatives give
their votes, at the last sitting of congress, to the admission of
Arkansas Territory as a state? Take those men, one by one, and ask them
in their parlours, do you _approve of slavery?_ ask them on _Northern_
ground, where they will speak the truth, and I doubt not _every man_ of
them will tell you, _no!_ Why then, I ask, did _they_ give their votes
to enlarge the mouth of that grave which has already destroyed its tens
of thousands? All our enemies tell _us_ they are as much anti-slavery as
we are. Yes, my friends, thousands who are helping you to bind the
fetters of slavery on the negro, despise you in their hearts for doing
it; they rejoice that such an institution has not been entailed upon
them. Why then, I would ask, do _they_ lend you their help? I will tell
you, "they love _the praise of men more_ than the praise of God." The
Abolition cause has not yet become so popular as to induce them to
believe, that by advocating it in congress, they shall sit still more
securely in their seats there, and like the _chief rulers_ in the days
of our Saviour, though many believed on him, yet they did _not_ confess
him, lest they should _be put out of the synagogue_; John xii, 42, 43.
Or perhaps like Pilate, thinking they could prevail nothing, and fearing
a tumult, they determined to release Barabbas and surrender the just
man, the poor innocent slave to be stripped of his rights and scourged.
In vain will such men try to wash their hands, and say, with the Roman
governor, "I am innocent of the blood of this just person." Northern
American statesmen are no more innocent of the crime of slavery, than
Pilate was of the murder of Jesus, or Saul of that of Stephen. These are
high charges, but I appeal to _their hearts_; I appeal to public opinion
ten years from now. Slavery then is a national sin.

But you will say, a great many other Northerners tell us so, who can
have no political motives. The interests of the North, you must know, my
friends, are very closely combined with those of the South. The Northern
merchants and manufacturers are making _their_ fortunes out of the
_produce of slave labor_; the grocer is selling your rice and sugar; how
then can these men bear a testimony against slavery without condemning
themselves? But there is another reason, the North is most dreadfully
afraid of Amalgamation. She is alarmed at the very idea of a thing so
monstrous, as she thinks. And lest this consequence _might_ flow from
emancipation, she is determined to resist all efforts at emancipation
without expatriation. It is not because _she approves of slavery_, or
believes it to be "the corner stone of our republic," for she is as much
_anti-slavery_ as we are; but amalgamation is too horrible to think of.
Now I would ask _you_, is it right, is it generous, to refuse the
colored people in this country the advantages of education and the
privilege, or rather the _right_, to follow honest trades and callings
merely because they are colored? The same prejudice exists here against
our colored brethren that existed against the Gentiles in Judea. Great
numbers cannot bear the idea of equality, and fearing lest, if they had
the same advantages we enjoy, they would become as intelligent, as
moral, as religious, and as respectable and wealthy, they are determined
to keep them as low as they possibly can. Is this doing as they would be
done by? Is this loving their neighbor _as themselves_? Oh! that _such_
opposers of Abolitionism would put their souls in the stead of the free
colored man's and obey the apostolic injunction, to "remember them that
are in bonds _as bound with them_." I will leave you to judge whether
the fear of amalgamation ought to induce men to oppose anti-slavery
efforts, when _they_ believe _slavery_ to be _sinful_. Prejudice against
color, is the most powerful enemy we have to fight with at the North.

You need not be surprised, then, at all, at what is said _against_
Abolitionists by the North, for they are wielding a two-edged sword,
which even here, cuts through the _cords of caste_, on the one side, and
the _bonds of interest_ on the other. They are only sharing the fate of
other reformers, abused and reviled whilst they are in the minority; but
they are neither angry nor discouraged by the invective which has been
heaped upon them by slaveholders at the South and their apologists at
the North. They know that when George Fox and William Edmundson were
laboring in behalf of the negroes in the West Indies in 1671 that the
very _same_ slanders were propogated against them, which are _now_
circulated against Abolitionists. Although it was well known that Fox
was the founder of a religious sect which repudiated _all_ war, and
_all_ violence, yet _even he_ was accused of "endeavoring to excite the
slaves to insurrection and of teaching the negroes to cut their master's
throats." And these two men who had their feet shod with the preparation
of the Gospel of Peace, were actually compelled to draw up a formal
declaration that _they were not_ trying to raise a rebellion in
Barbadoes. It is also worthy of remark that these Reformers did not at
this time see the necessity of emancipation under seven years, and their
principal efforts were exerted to persuade the planters of the necessity
of instructing their slaves; but the slaveholder saw then, just what the
slaveholder sees now, that an _enlightened_ population _never_ can be a
_slave_ population, and therefore they passed a law, that negroes should
not even attend the meetings of Friends. Abolitionists know that the
life of Clarkson was sought by slavetraders; and that even Wilberforce
was denounced on the floor of Parliament as a fanatic and a hypocrite by
the present King of England, the very man who, in 1834, set his seal to
that instrument which burst the fetters of eight hundred thousand slaves
in his West India colonies. They know that the first Quaker who bore a
_faithful_ testimony against the sin of slavery was cut off from
religious fellowship with that society. That Quaker was a _woman_. On
her deathbed she sent for the committee who dealt with her--she told
them, the near approach of death had not altered her sentiments on the
subject of slavery and waving her hand towards a very fertile and
beautiful portion of country which lay stretched before her window, she
said with great solemnity, "Friends, the time will come when there will
not be friends enough in all this district to hold one meeting for
worship, and this garden will be turned into a wilderness."

The aged friend, who with tears in his eyes, related this interesting
circumstance to me, remarked, that at that time there were seven
meetings of friends in that part of Virginia, but that when he was there
ten years ago, not a single meeting was held, and the country was
literally a desolation. Soon after her decease, John Woolman began his
labors in our society, and instead of disowning a member for testifying
_against_ slavery, they have for fifty-two years positively forbidden
their members to hold slaves.

Abolitionists understand the slaveholding spirit too well to be
surprised at any thing that has yet happened at the South or the North;
they know that the greater the sin is, which is exposed, the more
violent will be the efforts to blacken the character and impugn the
motives of those who are engaged in bringing to light the hidden things
of darkness. They understand the work of Reform too well to be driven
back by the furious waves of opposition, which are only foaming out
their own shame. They have stood "the world's dread laugh," when only
twelve men formed the first Anti-Slavery Society in Boston in 1831. They
have faced and refuted the calumnies of their enemies, and proved
themselves to be emphatically _peace men_ by _never resisting_ the
violence of mobs, even when driven by them from the temple of God, and
dragged by an infuriated crowd through the streets of the emporium of
New-England, or subjected by _slaveholders_ to the pain of corporal
punishment. "None of these things move them;" and, by the grace of God,
they are determined to persevere in this work of faith and labor of
love: they mean to pray, and preach, and write, and print, until slavery
is completely overthrown, until Babylon is taken up and cast into the
sea, to "be found no more at all." They mean to petition Congress year
after year, until the seat of our government is cleansed from the sinful
traffic of "slaves and the souls of men." Although that august assembly
may be like the unjust judge who "feared not God neither regarded man,"
yet it must yield just as he did, from the power of importunity. Like
the unjust judge, Congress _must_ redress the wrongs of the widow, lest
by the continual coming up of petitions, it be wearied. This will be
striking the dagger into the very heart of the monster, and once 'tis
done, he must soon expire.

Abolitionists have been accused of abusing their Southern brethren. Did
the prophet Isaiah _abuse_ the Jews when he addressed to them the
cutting reproofs contained in the first chapter of his prophecies, and
ended by telling them, they would be _ashamed_ of the oaks they had
desired, and _confounded_ for the garden they had chosen? Did John the
Baptist _abuse_ the Jews when he called them "_a generation of vipers_,"
and warned them "to bring forth fruits meet for repentance?" Did Peter
abuse the Jews when he told them they were the _murderers_ of the Lord
of Glory? Did Paul abuse the Roman Governor when he reasoned before him
of righteousness, temperance, and judgment, so as to send conviction
home to his guilty heart, and cause him to tremble in view of the crimes
he was living in? Surely not. No man will now accuse the prophets and
apostles of _abuse_, but what have Abolitionists done more than they? No
doubt the Jews thought the prophets and apostles in their day, just as
harsh and uncharitable as slaveholders now, think Abolitionists; if they
did not, why did they beat, and stone, and kill them?

Great fault has been found with the prints which have been employed to
expose slavery at the North, but my friends, how could this be done so
effectually in any other way? Until the pictures of the slave's
sufferings were drawn and held up to public gaze, no Northerner had any
idea of the cruelty of the system, it never entered their minds that
such abominations could exist in Christian, Republican America; they
never suspected that many of the _gentlemen_ and _ladies_ who came from
the South to spend the summer months in travelling among them, were
petty tyrants at home. And those who had lived at the South, and came to
reside at the North, were too _ashamed of slavery_ even to speak of it;
the language of their hearts was, "tell it _not_ in Gath, publish it
_not_ in the streets of Askelon;" they saw no use in uncovering the
loathsome body to popular sight, and in hopeless despair, wept in secret
places over the sins of oppression. To such hidden mourners the
formation of Anti-Slavery Societies was as life from the dead, the first
beams of hope which gleamed through the dark clouds of despondency and
grief. Prints were made use of to effect the abolition of the
Inquisition in Spain, and Clarkson employed them when he was laboring to
break up the Slave trade, and English Abolitionists used them just as we
are now doing. They are powerful appeals and have invariably done the
work they were designed to do, and we cannot consent to abandon the use
of these until the _realities_ no longer exist.

With regard to those white men, who, it was said, did try to raise an
insurrection in Mississippi a year ago, and who were stated to be
Abolitionists, none of them were proved to be members of Anti-Slavery
Societies, and it must remain a matter of great doubt whether, even they
were guilty of the crimes alledged against them, because when any
community is thrown into such a panic as to inflict Lynch law upon
accused persons, they cannot be supposed to be capable of judging with
calmness and impartiality. _We know_ that the papers of which the
Charleston mail was robbed, were _not_ insurrectionary, and that they
were _not_ sent to the colored people as was reported. _We know_ that
Amos Dresser was _no insurrectionist_ though he was accused of being so,
and on this false accusation was publicly whipped in Nashville in the
midst of a crowd of infuriated _slaveholders_. Was that young man
disgraced by this infliction of corporal punishment? No more than was
the great apostle of the Gentiles who five times received forty stripes,
save one. Like him, he might have said, "henceforth I bear in my body
the marks of the Lord Jesus," for it was for the _truth's sake, he
suffered_, as much as did the Apostle Paul. Are Nelson, and Garrett, and
Williams, and other Abolitionists who have recently been banished from
Missouri, insurrectionists? _We know_ they are _not_, whatever
slaveholders may choose to call them. The spirit which now asperses the
character of the Abolitionists, is the _very same_ which dressed up the
Christians of Spain in the skins of wild beasts and pictures of devils
when they were led to execution as heretics. Before we condemn
individuals, it is necessary, even in a wicked community, to accuse them
of some crime; hence, when Jezebel wished to compass the death of
Naboth, men of Belial were suborned to bear _false_ witness against him,
and so it was with Stephen, and so it ever has been, and ever will be,
as long as there is any virtue to suffer on the rack, or the gallows.
_False_ witnesses must appear against Abolitionists before they can be
condemned.

I will now say a few words on George Thompson's mission to this country.
This Philanthropist was accused of being a foreign emissary. Were La
Fayette, and Steuben, and De Kalb, foreign emissaries when they came
over to America to fight against the tories, who preferred submitting to
what was termed, "the yoke of servitude," rather than bursting the
fetters which bound them to the mother country? _They_ came with _carnal
weapons_ to engage in _bloody_ conflict against American citizens, and
yet, where do their names stand on the page of History. Among the
honorable, or the low? Thompson came here to war against the giant sin
of slavery, _not_ with the sword and the pistol, but with the smooth
stones of oratory taken from the pure waters of the river of Truth. His
splendid talents and commanding eloquence rendered him a powerful
coadjutor in the Anti-Slavery cause, and in order to neutralize the
effects of these upon his auditors, and rob the poor slave of the
benefits of his labors, his character was defamed, his life was sought,
and he at last driven from our Republic, as a fugitive. But was
_Thompson_ disgraced by all this mean and contemptible and wicked
chicanery and malice? No more than was Paul, when in consequence of a
vision he had seen at Troas, he went over to Macedonia to help the
Christians there, and was beaten and imprisoned, because he cast out a
spirit of divination from a young damsel which had brought much gain to
her masters. Paul was as much a _foreign emissary_ in the Roman colony
of Philippi, as George Thompson was in America, and it was because he
was a _Jew_, and taught customs it was not lawful for them to receive or
observe, being Romans, that the Apostle was thus treated.

It was said, Thompson was a felon, who had fled to this country to
escape transportation to New Holland. Look at him now pouring the
thundering strains of his eloquence, upon crowded audiences in Great
Britain, and see in this a triumphant vindication of his character. And
have the slaveholder, and his obsequious apologist, gained any thing by
all their violence and falsehood? No! for the stone which struck Goliath
of Gath, had already been thrown from the sling. The giant of slavery
who had so proudly defied the armies of the living God, had received his
death-blow before he left our shores. But what is George Thompson doing
there? Is he not now laboring there, as effectually to abolish American
slavery as though he trod our own soil, and lectured to New York or
Boston assemblies? What is he doing there, but constructing a stupendous
dam, which will turn the overwhelming tide of public opinion over the
wheels of that machinery which Abolitionists are working here. He is now
lecturing to _Britons_ on _American Slavery_, to the _subjects_ of a
_King_, on the abject condition of the _slaves of a Republic_. He is
telling them of that mighty confederacy of petty tyrants which extends
ever thirteen States of our Union. He is telling them of the munificent
rewards offered by slaveholders, for the heads of the most distinguished
advocates for freedom in this country. He is moving the British Churches
to send out to the churches of America the most solemn appeals,
reproving, rebuking, and exhorting them with all long suffering and
patience to abandon the sin of slavery immediately. Where then I ask,
will the name of George Thompson stand on the page of History? Among the
honorable, or the base?

What can I say more, my friends, to induce _you_ to set your hands, and
heads, and hearts, to this great work of justice and mercy. Perhaps you
have feared the consequences of immediate Emancipation, and been
frightened by all those dreadful prophecies of rebellion, bloodshed and
murder, which have been uttered. "Let no man deceive you;" they are the
predictions of that same "lying spirit" which spoke through the four
thousand prophets of old, to Ahab king of Israel, urging him on to
destruction. _Slavery_ may produce these horrible scenes if it is
continued five years longer, but Emancipation _never will_.

I can prove the _safety_ of immediate Emancipation by history. In St.
Domingo in 1793 six hundred thousand slaves were set free in a white
population of forty-two thousand. That Island "marched as by enchantment
towards its ancient splendor", cultivation prospered, every day produced
perceptible proofs of its progress, and the negroes all continued
quietly to work on the different plantations, until in 1802, France
determined to reduce these liberated slaves again to bondage. It was at
_this time_ that all those dreadful scenes of cruelty occurred, which we
so often _unjustly_ hear spoken of, as the effects of Abolition. They
were occasioned _not_ by Emancipation, but by the base attempt to fasten
the chains of slavery on the limbs of liberated slaves.

In Guadaloupe eighty-five thousand slaves were freed in a white
population of thirteen thousand. The same prosperous effects followed
manumission here, that had attended it in Hayti, every thing was quiet
until Buonaparte sent out a fleet to reduce these negroes again to
slavery, and in 1802 this institution was re-established in that Island.
In 1834, when Great Britain determined to liberate the slaves in her
West India colonies, and proposed the apprenticeship system; the
planters of Bermuda and Antigua, after having joined the other planters
in their representations of the bloody consequences of Emancipation, in
order if possible to hold back the hand which was offering the boon of
freedom to the poor negro; as soon as they found such falsehoods were
utterly disregarded, and Abolition must take place, came forward
voluntarily, and asked for the compensation which was due to them,
saying, _they preferred immediate emancipation_, and were not afraid of
any insurrection. And how is it with these islands now? They are
decidedly more prosperous than any of those in which the apprenticeship
system was adopted, and England is now trying to abolish that system, so
fully convinced is she that immediate Emancipation is the _safest_ and
the best plan.

And why not try it in the Southern States, if it _never_ has occasioned
rebellion; if _not a drop of blood_ has ever been shed in consequence of
it, though it has been so often tried, why should we suppose it would
produce such disastrous consequences now? "Be not deceived then, God is
not mocked," by such false excuses for not doing justly and loving
mercy. There is nothing to fear from immediate Emancipation, but _every
thing_ from the continuance of slavery.

Sisters in Christ, I have done. As a Southerner, I have felt it was my
duty to address you. I have endeavoured to set before you the exceeding
sinfulness of slavery, and to point you to the example of those noble
women who have been raised up in the church to effect great revolutions,
and to suffer for the truth's sake. I have appealed to your sympathies
as women, to your sense of duty as _Christian women_>. I have attempted
to vindicate the Abolitionists, to prove the entire safety of immediate
Emancipation, and to plead the cause of the poor and oppressed. I have
done--I have sowed the seeds of truth, but I well know, that even if an
Apollos were to follow in my steps to water them, "_God only_ can give
the increase." To Him then who is able to prosper the work of his
servant's hand, I commend this Appeal in fervent prayer, that as he
"hath _chosen the weak things of the world_, to confound the things
which are mighty," so He may cause His blessing, to descend and carry
conviction to the hearts of many Lydias through these speaking pages.
Farewell.--Count me not your "enemy because I have told you the truth,"
but believe me in unfeigned affection,

Your sympathizing Friend,

ANGELINA E. GRIMKE.

Published by the American Anti-Slavery Society, corner of Spruce and
Nassau Streets.

THE ANTI-SLAVERY EXAMINER.

* * * * *

VOL. I. SEPTEMBER, 1836. No. 2.

* * * * *

APPEAL

TO THE

CHRISTIAN WOMEN OF THE SOUTH,

BY A.E. GRIMKE REVISED AND CORRECTED.

"Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not within
thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house more than all
the Jews. For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time,
then shalt there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews
from another place: but thou and thy father's house shall be
destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom
for such a time as this. And Esther bade them return Mordecai
this answer:--and so will I go in unto the king, which is not
according to law, and _if I perish, I perish_."

Esther IV. 13-16.

RESPECTED FRIENDS,

It is because I feel a deep and tender interest in your present and
eternal welfare that I am willing thus publicly to address you. Some of
you have loved me as a relative, and some have felt bound to me in
Christian sympathy, and Gospel fellowship; and even when compelled by a
strong sense of duty, to break those outward bonds of union which bound
us together as members of the same community, and members of the same
religious denomination, you were generous enough to give me credit, for
sincerity as a Christian, though you believed I had been most strangely
deceived. I thanked you then for your kindness, and I ask you _now_, for
the sake of former confidence, and former friendship, to read the
following pages in the spirit of calm investigation and fervent prayer.
It is because you have known me, that I write thus unto you.

But there are other Christian women scattered over the Southern States,
of whom a very large number have never seen me, and never heard my name,
and feel _no_ personal interest whatever in _me_. But I feel an interest
in _you_, as branches of the same vine from whose root I daily draw the
principle of spiritual vitality--Yes! Sisters in Christ I feel an
interest in _you_, and often has the secret prayer arisen on your
behalf, Lord "open thou their eyes that they may see wondrous things out
of thy Law"--It is then, because I _do feel_ and _do pray_ for you, that
I thus address you upon a subject about which of all others, perhaps you
would rather not hear any thing; but, "would to God ye could bear with
me a little in my folly, and indeed bear with me, for I am jealous over
you with godly jealousy." Be not afraid then to read my appeal; it is
_not_ written in the heat of passion or prejudice, but in that solemn
calmness which is the result of conviction and duty. It is true, I am
going to tell you unwelcome truths, but I mean to speak these _truths in
love_, and remember Solomon says, "faithful are the _wounds_ of a
friend." I do not believe the time has yet come when _Christian women_
"will not endure sound doctrine," even on the subject of Slavery, if it
is spoken to them in tenderness and love, therefore I now address _you_.

* * * * *

POSTAGE.--This periodical contains four and a half sheets. Postage under
100 miles, 6 3-4 cents; over 100 miles, 11 1-4 cents.

_PLEASE READ AND CIRCULATE._

* * * * *

To all of you then, known or unknown, relatives or strangers, (for you
are all _one_ in Christ,) I would speak. I have felt for you at this
time, when unwelcome light is pouring in upon the world on the subject
of slavery; light which even Christians would exclude, if they could,
from our country, or at any rate from the southern portion of it,
saying, as its rays strike the rock bound coasts of New England and
scatter their warmth and radiance over her hills and valleys, and from
thence travel onward over the Palisades of the Hudson, and down the soft
flowing waters of the Delaware and gild the waves of the Potomac,
"hitherto shalt thou come and no further;" I know that even professors
of His name who has been emphatically called the "Light of the world"
would, if they could, build a wall of adamant around the Southern States
whose top might reach unto heaven, in order to shut out the light which
is bounding from mountain to mountain and from the hills to the plains
and valleys beneath, through the vast extent of our Northern States. But
believe me, when I tell you, their attempts will be as utterly fruitless
as were the efforts of the builders of Babel; and why? Because moral,
like natural light, is so extremely subtle in its nature as to overleap
all human barriers, and laugh at the puny efforts of man to control it.
All the excuses and palliations of this system must inevitably be swept
away, just as other "refuges of lies" have been, by the irresistible
torrent of a rectified public opinion. "The _supporters_ of the slave
system," says Jonathan Dymond in his admirable work on the Principles of
Morality, "will _hereafter_ be regarded with the _same_ public feeling,
as he who was an advocate for the slave trade _now_ is." It will be, and
that very soon, clearly perceived and fully acknowledged by all the
virtuous and the candid, that in _principle_ it is as sinful to hold a
human being in bondage who has been born in Carolina, as one who has
been born in Africa. All that sophistry of argument which has been
employed to prove, that although it is sinful to send to Africa to
procure men and women as slaves, who have never been in slavery, that
still, it is not sinful to keep those in bondage who have come down by
inheritance, will be utterly overthrown. We must come back to the good
old doctrine of our forefathers who declared to the world, "this self
evident truth that _all_ men are created equal, and that they have
certain _inalienable_ rights among which are life, _liberty_, and the
pursuit of happiness." It is even a greater absurdity to suppose a man
can be legally born a slave under _our free Republican_ Government, than
under the petty despotisms of barbarian Africa. If then, we have no
right to enslave an African, surely we can have none to enslave an
American; if it is a self evident truth that _all_ men, every where and
of every color are born equal, and have an _inalienable right to
liberty_, then it is equally true that _no_ man can be born a slave, and
no man can ever _rightfully_ be reduced to _involuntary_ bondage and
held as a slave, however fair may be the claim of his master or mistress
through wills and title-deeds.

But after all, it may be said, our fathers were certainly mistaken, for
the Bible sanctions Slavery, and that is the highest authority. Now the
Bible is my ultimate appeal in all matters of faith and practice, and it
is to _this test_ I am anxious to bring the subject at issue between us.
Let us then begin with Adam and examine the charter of privileges which
was given to him. "Have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the
fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the
earth." In the eighth Psalm we have a still fuller description of this
charter which through Adam was given to all mankind. "Thou madest him to
have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things
under his feet. All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field,
the fowl of the air, the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through
the paths of the seas." And after the flood when this charter of human
rights was renewed, we find _no additional_ power vested in man. "And
the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the
earth, and every fowl of the air, and upon all that moveth upon the
earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea, into your hand are they
delivered." In this charter, although the different kinds of
_irrational_ beings are so particularly enumerated, and supreme dominion
over _all of them_ is granted, yet _man_ is _never_ vested with this
dominion _over his fellow man_; he was never told that any of the human
species were put _under his feet_; it was only _all things_, and man,
who was created in the image of his Maker, _never_ can properly be
termed a _thing_, though the laws of Slave States do call him "a chattel
personal;" _Man_ then, I assert _never_ was put _under the feet of man_,
by that first charter of human right, which was given by God, to the
Fathers of the Antediluvian and Postdiluvian worlds, therefore this
doctrine of equality is based on the Bible.

But it may be argued, that in the very chapter of Genesis from which I
have last quoted, will be found the curse pronounced upon Canaan, by
which his posterity was consigned to servitude under his brothers Shem
and Japheth. I know this prophecy was uttered, and was most fearfully
and wonderfully fulfilled, through the immediate descendants of Canaan,
i.e. the Canaanites, and I do not know but it has been through all the
children of Ham, but I do know that prophecy does _not_ tell us what
_ought to be_, but what actually does take place, ages after it has been
delivered, and that if we justify America for enslaving the children of
Africa, we must also justify Egypt for reducing the children of Israel
to bondage, for the latter was foretold as explicitly as the former. I
am well aware that prophecy has often been urged as an excuse for
Slavery, but be not deceived, the fulfilment of prophecy will _not cover
one sin_ in the awful day of account. Hear what our Saviour says on this
subject; "it must needs be that offences come, but _woe unto that man
through whom they come_"--Witness some fulfilment of this declaration in
the tremendous destruction of Jerusalem, occasioned by that most
nefarious of all crimes the crucifixion of the Son of God. Did the fact
of that event having been foretold, exculpate the Jews from sin in
perpetrating it; No--for hear what the Apostle Peter says to them on
this subject, "Him being delivered by the determinate counsel and
foreknowledge of God, _ye_ have taken, and by _wicked_ hands have
crucified and slain." Other striking instances might be adduced, but
these will suffice.

But it has been urged that the patriarchs held slaves, and therefore,
slavery is right. Do you really believe that patriarchal servitude was
like American slavery? Can you believe it? If so, read the history of
these primitive fathers of the church and be undeceived. Look at
Abraham, though so great a man, going to the herd himself and fetching a
calf from thence and serving it up with his own hands, for the
entertainment of his guests. Look at Sarah, that princess as her name
signifies, baking cakes upon the hearth. If the servants they had were
like Southern slaves, would they have performed such comparatively
menial offices for themselves? Hear too the plaintive lamentation of
Abraham when he feared he should have no son to bear his name down to
posterity. "Behold thou hast given me no seed, &c., one born in my house
is _mine_ heir." From this it appears that one of his _servants_ was to
inherit his immense estate. Is this like Southern slavery? I leave it to
your own good sense and candor to decide. Besides, such was the footing
upon which Abraham was with _his_ servants, that he trusted them with
arms. Are slaveholders willing to put swords and pistols into the hands
of their slaves? He was as a father among his servants; what are
planters and masters generally among theirs? When the institution of
circumcision was established, Abraham was commanded thus; "He that is
eight days old shall be circumcised among you, _every_ man-child in your
generations; he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any
stranger which is not of thy seed." And to render this command with
regard to his _servants_ still more impressive it is repeated in the
very next verse; and herein we may perceive the great care which was
taken by God to guard the _rights of servants_ even under this "dark
dispensation." What too was the testimony given to the faithfulness of
this eminent patriarch. "For I know him that he will command his
children and his _household_ after him, and they shall keep the way of
the Lord to do justice and judgment." Now my dear friends many of you
believe that circumcision has been superseded by baptism in the Church;
_Are you_ careful to have _all_ that are born in your house or bought
with money of any stranger, baptized? Are _you_ as faithful as Abraham
to command _your household_ to _keep the way of the Lord?_ I leave it to
your own consciences to decide. Was patriarchal servitude then like
American Slavery?

But I shall be told, God sanctioned Slavery, yea commanded Slavery under
the Jewish Dispensation. Let us examine this subject calmly and
prayerfully. I admit that a species of _servitude_ was permitted to the
Jews, but in studying the subject I have been struck with wonder and
admiration at perceiving how carefully the servant was guarded from
violence, injustice, and wrong. I will first inform you how these
servants became servants, for I think this a very important part of our
subject. From consulting Horne, Calmet, and the Bible, I find there were
six different ways by which the Hebrews became servants legally.

1. A Hebrew, whose father was still alive, and who on that account had
not inherited his patrimonial estate, might sell himself, i.e., his
services, for six years, in which case _he_ received the purchase money
_himself_. Ex. xxi, 2.

2. A father might sell his children as servants, i.e., his _daughters_,
in which circumstance it was understood the daughter was to be the wife
or daughter-in-law of the man who bought her, and the _father_ received
the price. In other words, Jewish women were sold as _white women_ were
in the first settlement of Virginia--as _wives, not_ as slaves. Ex. xxi,
7-11.

3. Thieves not able to make restitution for their thefts, were sold for
the benefit of the injured person. Ex. xxii, 3.

4. They might be born in servitude. Ex. xxi, 4.

5. If reduced to extreme poverty, a Hebrew might sell himself; but in
such a case he was to serve, not as a bondsman, whose term of service
was only six years, nor was he to serve as a hired servant, who received
his wages every evening, nor yet as a sojourner or temporary resident in
the family, but he was to serve his master until the year of Jubilee[A].
Lev. xxv, 39, 40.

[Footnote A: If the reader will leave out the italicised words--But and
And, in the 40th verse--he will find that I am fully authorized in the
meaning I have attached to it. But and And are _not_ in the original
Hebrew; have been introduced by the translators, and entirely destroy
the true sense of the passage.]

6. If a Hebrew had sold himself to a rich Gentile, he might be redeemed
by one of his brethren at any time the money was offered; and he who
redeemed him, was _not_ to take advantage of the favor thus conferred,
and rule over him with rigor. Lev. xxv, 47-55.

Before going into an examination of the laws by which these servants
were protected, I would just ask whether American slaves have become
slaves in any of the ways in which the Hebrews became servants. Did they
sell themselves into slavery and receive the purchase money into their
own hands? No! No! Did they steal the property of another, and were they
sold to make restitution for their crimes? No! Did their present
masters, as an act of kindness, redeem them from some heathen tyrant to
whom _they had sold themselves_ in the dark hour of adversity? No! Were
they born in slavery? No! No! Not according to _Jewish Law_, for the
servants who were born in servitude among them, were born of parents who
had _sold themselves_: Ex. xxi, 4; Lev. xxv, 39, 40. Were the female
slaves of the South sold by their fathers? How shall I answer this
question? Thousands and tens of thousands never were, _their_ fathers
_never_ have received the poor compensation of silver or gold for the
tears and toils, the suffering, and anguish, and hopeless bondage of
_their_ daughters. They labor day by day, and year by year, side by
side, in the same field, if haply their daughters are permitted to
remain on the same plantation with them, instead of being, as they often
are, separated from their parents and sold into distant states, never
again to meet on earth. But do the _fathers of the South ever sell their
daughters?_ My heart beats, and my hand trembles, as I write the awful
affirmative, Yes! The fathers of this Christian land often sell their
daughters, _not_ as Jewish parents did, to be the wives and
daughters-in-law of the men who buy them, but to be the abject slaves of
petty tyrants and irresponsible masters. Is it not so, my friends? I
leave it to your own candor to corroborate my assertion. Southern slaves
then have _not_ become slaves in any of the six different ways in which
Hebrews became servants, and I hesitate not to say that American masters
_cannot_ according to _Jewish law_ substantiate their claim to the men,
women, or children they now hold in bondage.

But there was one way in which a Jew might illegally be reduced to
servitude; it was this, he might be _stolen_ and afterwards sold as a
slave, as was Joseph. To guard most effectually against this dreadful
crime of manstealing, God enacted this severe law. "He that stealeth a
man and selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be
put to death." And again, "If a man be found stealing any of his
brethren of the children of Israel, and maketh merchandise of him, or
selleth him; then _that thief shall die_; and thou shalt put away evil
from among you." Deut. xxiv, 7. As I have tried American Slavery by
_legal_ Hebrew servitude, and found, (to your surprise, perhaps,) that
Jewish law cannot justify the slaveholder's claim, let us now try it by
_illegal_ Hebrew bondage. Have the Southern slaves then been stolen? If
they did not sell themselves into bondage; if they were not sold as
thieves; if they were not redeemed from a heathen master to whom _they
had sold themselves;_ if they were not born in servitude according to
Hebrew law; and if the females were not sold by their fathers as wives
and daughters-in-law to those who purchased them; then what shall we say
of them? what can we say of them? but that according _to Hebrew Law they
have been stolen._

But I shall be told that the Jews had other servants who were absolute
slaves. Let us look a little into this also. They had other servants who
were procured from the heathen.

Bondmen and bondmaids might be bought of the heathen round about them.
Lev. xxv, 44.

I will now try the right of the southern planter by the claims of Hebrew
masters to their _heathen_ servants. Were the southern slaves bought
from the heathen? No! For surely, no one will _now_ vindicate the
slave-trade so far as to assert that slaves were bought from the heathen
who were obtained by that system of piracy. The only excuse for holding
southern slaves is that they were born in slavery, but we have seen that
they were _not_ born in servitude as Jewish servants were, and that the
children of heathen servants were not legally subjected to bondage, even
under the Mosaic Law. How then have the slaves of the South been
obtained?

I will next proceed to an examination of those laws which were enacted
in order to protect the Hebrew and the Heathen servant; for I wish you
to understand that _both_ were protected by Him, of whom it is said "his
mercies are over _all_ his works." I will first speak of those which
secured the rights of Hebrew servants. This code was headed thus:

1. Thou shalt _not_ rule over him with _rigor_, but shalt fear thy God.

2. If thou buy a Hebrew servant, six years shall he serve, and in the
seventh year he shall go out free for nothing. Ex. xxi, 2. And when thou
sendest him out free from thee, thou shalt not let him go away empty:
Thou shalt furnish him _liberally_ out of thy flock and out of thy
floor, and out of thy wine-press: of that wherewith the Lord thy God
hath blessed thee, shalt thou give unto him. Deut. xv, 13, 14.

3. If he come in by himself, he shall go out by himself; if he were
married, then his wife shall go out with him. Ex. xxi, 3.

4. If his master have given him a wife, and she have borne him sons and
daughters, the wife and her children shall be his master's, and he shall
go out by himself. Ex. xxi, 4.

5. If the servant shall plainly say, I love my master, my wife, and my
children; I will not go out free; then his master shall bring him unto
the Judges, and he shall bring him to the door, or unto the door-post,
and his master shall bore his ear through with an awl, and he shall
serve him _for ever_. Ex. xxi, 5, 6.

6. If a man smite the eye of his servant, or the eye of his maid, that
it perish, he shall let him go _free_ for his eye's sake. And if he
smite out his man servant's tooth or his maid servant's tooth, he shall
let him go _free_ for his tooth's sake. Ex. xxi, 26, 27.

7. On the Sabbath, rest was secured to servants by the fourth
commandment. Ex. xx, 10.

8. Servants were permitted to unite with their masters three times in
every year in celebrating the Passover, the feast of Weeks, and the
feast of Tabernacles; every male throughout the land was to appear
before the Lord at Jerusalem with a gift; here the bond and the free
stood on common ground. Deut. xvi.

9. If a man smite his servant or his maid with a rod, and he die under
his hand, he shall be surely punished. Notwithstanding, if he continue a
day or two, he shall not be punished, for he is his money. Ex. xxi, 20,
21.

From these laws we learn, that one class of Hebrew men servants were
bound to serve their masters _only six_ years, unless their attachment
to their employers, their wives and children, should induce them to wish
to remain in servitude, in which case, in order to prevent the
possibility of deception on the part of the master, the servant was
first taken before the magistrate, where he openly declared his
intention of continuing in his master's service, (probably a public
register was kept of such,) he was then conducted to the door of the
house, (in warm climates doors are thrown open.) and _there_ his ear was
_publicly_ bored, and by submitting to this operation, he testified his
willingness to serve him in subserviency to the law of God; for let it
be remembered, that the door-post was covered with the precepts of that
law. Deut. vi, 9. xi, 20: _for ever_, i.e., during his life, for Jewish
Rabbins, who must have understood Jewish _slavery_ (as it is called),
"affirm that servants were set free at the death of their masters, and
did _not_ descend to their heirs;" or that he was to serve him until the
year of Jubilee, when _all_ servants were set at liberty. The other
class, when they first sold themselves, agreed to remain until the year
of Jubilee. To protect servants from violence, it was ordained, that if
a master struck out the tooth or destroyed the eye of a servant, that
servant immediately became _free_, for such an act of violence evidently
showed he was unfit to possess the power of a master, and therefore that
power was taken from him. All servants enjoyed the rest of the Sabbath,
and partook of the privileges and festivities of the three great Jewish
Feasts; and if a servant died under the infliction of chastisement, his
master was surely to be punished. As a tooth for a tooth and life for
life was the Jewish law, of course he was punished with death. I know
that great stress has been laid upon the following verse:
"Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not be punished,
for he is his money."

Slaveholders, and the apologists of slavery, have eagerly seized upon
this little passage of Scripture, and held it up as the masters' Magna
Charta, by which they were licensed by God himself to commit the
greatest outrages upon the defenceless victims of their oppression. But,
my friends, was it designed to be so? If our Heavenly Father would
protect by law the _eye_ and the _tooth_ of a Hebrew servant, can we for
a moment believe that he would abandon that same servant to the brutal
rage of a master who would destroy even life itself? Let us then examine
this passage with the help of the context. In the 18th and 19th verses
we have a law which was made for _freemen_ who strove together. Here we
find, that if one man smote another, so that he died not, but only kept
his bed from being disabled, and he rose again and walked abroad upon
his staff, then _he_ was to be paid for the loss of his time, and all
the expenses of his sickness were to be borne by the man who smote him.
The freeman's time was _his own_, and therefore he was to be remunerated
for the loss of it. But _not_ so with the _servant_, whose time was, as
it were, _the money of his master_, because he had already paid for it:
If he continued a day or two after being struck, to keep his bed in
consequence of any wound received, then his lost time was _not_ to be
paid for, because it was _not his own_, but his master's, who had
already paid him for it. The loss of his time was the _master's loss_,
and _not_ the servant's. This explanation is confirmed by the fact, that
the Hebrew word translated continue, means "to stand still;" _i.e._, to
be unable to go out about his master's work.

Here then we find this stronghold of slavery completely demolished.
Instead of its being a license to inflict such chastisement upon a
servant as to cause even death itself, it is in fact a law merely to
provide that a man should not be required to pay his servant twice over
for his time. It is altogether an unfounded assumption on the part of
the slaveholder, that this servant _died_ after a day or two; the text
does not say so, and I contend that he _got well_ after a day or two,
just as the man mentioned in the 19th verse recovered from the effects
of the blows he received. The cases are completely parallel, and the
first law throws great light on the second. This explanation is far more
consonant with the character of God, and were it not that our vision has
been so completely darkened by the existence of slavery in our country,
we never could so far have dishonored Him as to have supposed that He
sanctioned the murder of a servant; although slaveholding legislators
might legalize the killing of a slave in _four_ different
ways.--(_Stroud's Sketch of Slave Laws_.)

But I pass on now to the consideration of how the _female_ Jewish
servants were protected by _law_.

1. If she please not her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then
shall he let her be redeemed: to sell her unto another nation he shall
have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her.

2. If he have betrothed her unto his son, he shall deal with her after
the manner of daughters.

3. If he take him another wife, her food, her raiment, and her duty of
marriage, shall he not diminish.

4. If he do not these three unto her, then shall she go out _free_
without money.

On these laws I will give you Calmet's remarks; "A father could not sell
his daughter as a slave, according to the Rabbins, until she was at the
age of puberty, and unless he were reduced to the utmost indigence.
Besides, when a master bought an Israelitish girl, it was _always_ with
the presumption that he would take her to wife. Hence Moses adds, 'if
she please not her master, and he does not think fit to marry her, he
shall set her at liberty,' or according to the Hebrew, 'he shall let her
be redeemed.' 'To sell her to another nation he shall have no power,
seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her;' as to the engagement
implied, at least of taking her to wife. 'If he have betrothed her unto
his son, he shall deal with her after the manner of daughters;' i.e., he
shall take care that his son uses her as his wife, that he does not
despise or maltreat her. If he make his son marry another wife, he shall
give her her dowry, her clothes, and compensation for her virginity; if
he does none of these three, she shall _go out free_ without money."
Thus were the _rights of female servants carefully secured by law_ under
the Jewish Dispensation; and now I would ask, are the rights of female
slaves at the South thus secured? Are _they_ sold only as wives and
daughters-in-law, and when not treated as such, are they allowed to _go
out free?_ No! They have _all_ not only been illegally obtained as
servants according to Hebrew law, but they are also illegally _held_ in
bondage. Masters at the South and West have all forfeited their claims,
(_if they ever had any,_) to their female slaves.

We come now to examine the case of those servants who were "of the
heathen round about;" Were _they_ left entirely unprotected by law?
Horne, in speaking of the law, "Thou shalt not rule over him with rigor,
but shalt fear thy God," remarks, "this law, Lev. xxv, 43, it is true,
speaks expressly of slaves who were of Hebrew descent; but as _alien
born_ slaves were ingrafted into the Hebrew Church by circumcision,
_there is no doubt_ but that it applied to _all_ slaves:" if so, then we
may reasonably suppose that the other protective laws extended to them
also; and that the only difference between Hebrew and Heathen servants
lay in this, that the former served but six years, unless they chose to
remain longer, and were always freed at the death of their masters;
whereas, the latter served until the year of Jubilee, though that might
include a period of forty-nine years,--and were left from father to son.

There are, however, two other laws which I have not yet noticed. The one
effectually prevented _all involuntary_ servitude, and the other
completely abolished Jewish servitude every fifty years. They were
equally operative upon the Heathen and the Hebrew.

1. "Thou shalt _not_ deliver unto his master the servant that is escaped
from his master unto thee. He shall dwell with thee, even among you, in
that place which he shall choose, in one of thy gates where it liketh
him best: thou shalt _not_ oppress him." Deut. xxiii, 15, 16.

2. "And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim _Liberty_
throughout _all_ the land, unto _all_ the inhabitants thereof; it shall
be a jubilee unto you." Lev. xxv, 10.

Here, then, we see that by this first law, the _door of Freedom was
opened wide to every servant who_ had any cause whatever for complaint;
if he was unhappy with his master, all he had to do was to leave him,
and _no man_ had a right to deliver him back to him again, and not only
so, but the absconded servant was to _choose_ where he should live, and
no Jew was permitted to oppress him. He left his master just as our
Northern servants leave us; we have no power to compel them to remain
with us, and no man has any right to oppress them; they go and dwell in
that place where it chooseth them, and live just where they like. Is it
so at the South? Is the poor runaway slave protected _by law_ from the
violence of that master whose oppression and cruelty has driven him from
his plantation or his house? No! no! Even the free states of the North
are compelled to deliver unto his master the servant that is escaped
from his master into them. By _human_ law, under the _Christian
Dispensation_, in the _nineteenth century we_ are commanded to do, what
_God_ more than _three thousand_ years ago, under the _Mosaic
Dispensation_, _positively commanded_ the Jews _not_ to do. In the wide
domain even of our free states, there is not _one_ city of refuge for
the poor runaway fugitive; not one spot upon which he can stand and say,
I am a free man--I am protected in my rights as a _man_, by the strong
arm of the law; no! _not one_. How long the North will thus shake hands
with the South in sin, I know not. How long she will stand by like the
persecutor Saul, _consenting_ unto the death of Stephen, and keeping the
raiment of them that slew him. I know not; but one thing I do know, the
_guilt of the North_ is increasing in a tremendous ratio as light is
pouring in upon her on the subject and the sin of slavery. As the sun of
righteousness climbs higher and higher in the moral heavens, she will
stand still more and more abashed as the query is thundered down into
her ear, "_Who_ hath required _this_ at thy hand?" It will be found _no_
excuse then that the Constitution of our country required that _persons
bound to service_ escaping from their masters should be delivered up; no
more excuse than was the reason which Adam assigned for eating the
forbidden fruit. _He was condemned and punished because_ he hearkened to
the voice of _his wife_, rather than to the command of his Maker; and
_we_ shall assuredly be condemned and punished for obeying _Man_ rather
than _God_, if we do not speedily repent and bring forth fruits meet for
repentance. Yea, are we not receiving chastisement even _now_?

But by the second of these laws a still more astonishing fact is
disclosed. If the first effectually prevented _all involuntary
servitude_, the last absolutely forbade even _voluntary servitude being
perpetual_. On the great day of atonement every fiftieth year the
Jubilee trumpet was sounded throughout the land of Judea, and _Liberty_
was proclaimed to _all_ the inhabitants thereof. I will not say that the
servants' _chains_ fell off and their _manacles_ were burst, for there
is no evidence that Jewish servants _ever_ felt the weight of iron
chains, and collars, and handcuffs; but I do say that even the man who
had voluntarily sold himself and the _heathen_ who had been sold to a
Hebrew master, were set free, the one as well as the other. This law was
evidently designed to prevent the oppression of the poor, and the
possibility of such a thing as _perpetual servitude_ existing among
them.

Where, then, I would ask, is the warrant, the justification, or the
palliation of American Slavery from Hebrew servitude? How many of the
southern slaves would now be in bondage according to the laws of Moses;
Not one. You may observe that I have carefully avoided using the term
_slavery_ when speaking of Jewish servitude; and simply for this reason,
that _no such thing_ existed among that people; the word translated
servant does _not_ mean _slave_, it is the same that is applied to
Abraham, to Moses, to Elisha and the prophets generally. _Slavery_ then
_never_ existed under the Jewish Dispensation at all, and I cannot but
regard it as an aspersion on the character of Him who is "glorious in
Holiness" for any one to assert that "_God sanctioned, yea commanded
slavery_ under the old dispensation." I would fain lift my feeble voice
to vindicate Jehovah's character from so foul a slander. If slaveholders
are determined to hold slaves as long as they can, let them not dare to
say that the God of mercy and of truth _ever_ sanctioned such a system
of cruelty and wrong. It is blasphemy against Him.

We have seen that the code of laws framed by Moses with regard to
servants was designed to _protect them_ as _men and women_, to secure to
them their _rights_ as _human beings_, to guard them from oppression and
defend them from violence of every kind. Let us now turn to the Slave
laws of the South and West and examine them too. I will give you the
substance only, because I fear I shall trespass too much on your time,
were I to quote them at length.

1. _Slavery_ is hereditary and perpetual, to the last moment of the
slave's earthly existence, and to all his descendants to the latest
posterity.

2. The labor of the slave is compulsory and uncompensated; while the
kind of labor, the amount of toil, the time allowed for rest, are
dictated solely by the master. No bargain is made, no wages given. A
pure despotism governs the human brute; and even his covering and
provender, both as to quantity and quality, depend entirely on the
master's discretion[A].

[Footnote A: There are laws in some of the slave states, limiting the
labor which the master may require of the slave to fourteen hours daily.
In some of the states there are laws requiring the masters to furnish a
certain amount of food and clothing, as for instance, _one quart_ of
corn per day, or _one peck_ per week, or _one bushel_ per month, and
"_one_ linen shirt and pantaloons for the summer, and a linen shirt and
woolen great coat and pantaloons for the winter," &c. But "still," to
use the language of Judge Stroud "the slave is entirely under the
control of his master.--is unprovided with a protector,--and, especially
as he cannot be a witness or make complaint in any known mode against
his master, the _apparent_ object of these laws may _always_ be
defeated." ED.]

3. The slave being considered a personal chattel may be sold or pledged,
or leased at the will of his master. He may be exchanged for marketable
commodities, or taken in execution for the debts or taxes either of a
living or dead master. Sold at auction, either individually, or in lots
to suit the purchaser, he may remain with his family, or be separated
from them for ever.

4. Slaves can make no contracts and have no _legal_ right to any
property, real or personal. Their own honest earnings and the legacies
of friends belong in point of law to their masters.

5. Neither a slave nor a free colored person can be a witness against
any _white_, or free person, in a court of justice, however atrocious
may have been the crimes they have seen him commit, if such testimony
would be for the benefit of a _slave_; but they may give testimony
_against a fellow slave_, or free colored man, even in cases affecting
life, if the _master_ is to reap the advantage of it.

6. The slave may be punished at his master's discretion--without
trial--without any means of legal redress; whether his offence be real
or imaginary; and the master can transfer the same despotic power to any
person or persons, he may choose to appoint.

7. The slave is not allowed to resist any free man under _any_
circumstances, _his_ only safety consists in the fact that his _owner_
may bring suit and recover the price of his body, in case his life is
taken, or his limbs rendered unfit for labor.

8. Slaves cannot redeem themselves, or obtain a change of masters,
though cruel treatment may have rendered such a change necessary for
their personal safety.

9. The slave is entirely unprotected in his domestic relations.

10. The laws greatly obstruct the manumission of slaves, even where the
master is willing to enfranchise them.

11. The operation of the laws tends to deprive slaves of religious
instruction and consolation.

12. The whole power of the laws is exerted to keep slaves in a state of
the lowest ignorance.

13. There is in this country a monstrous inequality of law and right.
What is a trifling fault in the _white_ man, is considered highly
criminal in the _slave_; the same offences which cost a white man a few
dollars only, are punished in the negro with death.

14. The laws operate most oppressively upon free people of color[A].

[Footnote A: See Mrs. Child's Appeal, Chap. II.]

Shall I ask you now my friends, to draw the _parallel_ between Jewish
_servitude_ and American _slavery_? No! For there is _no likeness_ in
the two systems; I ask you rather to mark the contrast. The laws of
Moses _protected servants_ in their _rights_ as _men and women_, guarded
them from oppression and defended them from wrong. The Code Noir of the
South _robs the slave of all his rights_ as a _man_, reduces him to a
chattel personal, and defends the _master_ in the exercise of the most
unnatural and unwarrantable power over his slave. They each bear the
impress of the hand which formed them. The attributes of justice and
mercy are shadowed out in the Hebrew code; those of injustice and
cruelty, in the Code Noir of America. Truly it was wise in the
slaveholders of the South to declare their slaves to be "chattels
personal;" for before they could be robbed of wages, wives, children,
and friends, it was absolutely necessary to deny they were human beings.
It is wise in them, to keep them in abject ignorance, for the strong man
armed must be bound before we can spoil his house--the powerful
intellect of man must be bound down with the iron chains of nescience
before we can rob him of his rights as a man; we must reduce him to a
_thing_ before we can claim the right to set our feet upon his neck,
because it was only _all things_ which were originally _put under the
feet of man_ by the Almighty and Beneficent Father of all, who has
declared himself to be _no respecter_ of persons, whether red, white or
black.

But some have even said that Jesus Christ did not condemn slavery. To
this I reply that our Holy Redeemer lived and preached among the Jews
only. The laws which Moses had enacted fifteen hundred years previous to
his appearance among them, had never been annulled, and these laws
protected every servant in Palestine. If then He did not condemn Jewish
servitude this does not prove that he would not have condemned such a
monstrous system as that of American _slavery_, if that had existed
among them. But did not Jesus condemn slavery? Let us examine some of
his precepts. "_Whatsoever_ ye would that men should do to you, do _ye
even so to them_." Let every slaveholder apply these queries to his own
heart; Am _I_ willing to be a slave--Am _I_ willing to see my wife the
slave of another--Am _I_ willing to see my mother a slave, or my father,
my sister or my brother? If not, then in holding others as slaves, I am
doing what I would _not_ wish to be done to me or any relative I have;
and thus have I broken this golden rule which was given _me_ to walk by.

But some slaveholders have said, "we were never in bondage to any man,"
and therefore the yoke of bondage would be insufferable to us, but
slaves are accustomed to it, their backs are fitted to the burden. Well,
I am willing to admit that you who have lived in freedom would find
slavery even more oppressive than the poor slave does, but then you may
try this question in another form--Am I willing to reduce _my little
child_ to slavery? You know that _if it is brought up a slave_ it will
never know any contrast, between freedom and bondage, its back will
become fitted to the burden just as the negro child's does--_not by
nature_--but by daily, violent pressure, in the same way that the head
of the Indian child becomes flattened by the boards in which it is
bound. It has been justly remarked that "_God never made a slave_," he
made man upright; his back was _not_ made to carry burdens, nor his neck
to wear a yoke, and the _man_ must be crushed within him, before _his_
back can be _fitted_ to the burden of perpetual slavery; and that his
back is _not_ fitted to it, is manifest by the insurrections that so
often disturb the peace and security of slaveholding countries. Who ever
heard of a rebellion of the beasts of the field; and why not? simply
because _they_ were all placed _under the feet of man_, into whose hand
they were delivered; it was originally designed that they should serve
him, therefore their necks have been formed for the yoke, and their
backs for the burden; but _not so with man_, intellectual, immortal man!
I appeal to you, my friends, as mothers; Are you willing to enslave
_your_ children? You start back with horror and indignation at such a
question. But why, if slavery is _no wrong_ to those upon whom it is
imposed? why, if as has often been said, slaves are happier than their
masters, free from the cares and perplexities of providing for
themselves and their _wanting_? Try yourselves by another of the Divine
precepts, "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself." Can we love a man
_as_ we love _ourselves if we do, and continue to do_ unto him, what we
would not wish any one to do to us? Look, too, at Christ's example, what
does he say of himself, "I came _not_ to be ministered unto, but to
minister." Can you for a moment imagine the meek and lowly, and
compassionate Saviour, _a slaveholder_? Do you not shudder at this
thought as much as at that of his being _a warrior_? But why, if slavery
is not sinful?

Again, it has been said, the Apostle Paul did not condemn slavery, for
he sent Onesimus back to Philemon. I do not think it can be said he sent
him back, for no coercion was made use of. Onesimus was not thrown into
prison and then sent back in chains to his master, as your runaway
slaves often are--this could not possibly have been the case, because
you know Paul as a Jew, was _bound to protect_ the runaway; _he had no
right_ to send _any_ fugitive back to his master. The state of the case
then seems to have been this. Onesimus had been an unprofitable servant
to Philemon and left him--he afterwards became converted under the
Apostle's preaching, and seeing that he had been to blame in his
conduct, and desiring by future fidelity to atone for past error, he
wished to return, and the Apostle gave him the letter we now have as a
recommendation to Philemon, informing him of the conversion of Onesimus,
and entreating him as "Paul the aged" "to receive him, _not_ now as a
_servant_, but _above_ a servant, a _brother beloved_, especially to me,
but how much more unto thee, both in the flesh and in the Lord. If thou
count _me_ therefore as a partner, _receive him as myself_." This, then,
surely cannot be forced into a justification of the practice of
returning runaway slaves back to their masters, to be punished with
cruel beatings and scourgings as they often are. Besides the word
_doulos_ here translated servant, is the same that is made use of in
Matt. xviii, 27. Now it appears that this servant _owed_ his lord ten
thousand talents; he possessed property to a vast amount. And what is
still more surprising, if he was a _slave_, is, that "forasmuch as he
had not to pay, his lord commanded _him_ to be sold, and his wife and
children, and all that he had, and payment to be made." Whoever heard of
a slaveholder selling a _slave_ and his family to pay himself a debt due
to him from a _slave_? What would he gain by it when the slave is
himself his _property_, and his wife and children also? Onesimus could
not, then, have been a _slave_, for slaves do not own their wives or
children; no, not even their own bodies, much less property. But again,
the servitude which the apostle was accustomed to, must have been very
different from American slavery, for he says, "the heir (or son), as
long as he is a child, differeth _nothing from a servant_, though he be
lord of all. But is under _tutors_ and governors until the time
appointed of the father." From this it appears, that the means of
_instruction_ were provided for _servants_ as well as children; and
indeed we know it must have been so among the Jews, because their
servants were not permitted to remain in perpetual bondage, and
therefore it was absolutely necessary they should be prepared to occupy
higher stations in society than those of servants. Is it so at the
South, my friends? Is the daily bread of instruction provided for _your
slaves_? are their minds enlightened, and they gradually prepared to
rise from the grade of menials into that of _free_, independent members
of the state? Let your own statute book, and your own daily experience,
answer these questions.

If this apostle sanctioned _slavery_, why did he exhort masters thus in
his epistle to the Ephesians, "and ye, masters, do the same things unto
them (i.e. perform your duties to your servants as unto Christ, not unto
men) _forbearing threatening_; knowing that your master also is in
heaven, neither is _there respect of persons with him_." And in
Colossians, "Masters give unto your servants that which is _just and
equal_, knowing that ye also have a master in heaven." Let slaveholders
only _obey_ these injunctions of Paul, and I am satisfied slavery would
soon be abolished. If he thought it sinful even to _threaten_ servants,
surely he must have thought it sinful to flog and to beat them with
sticks and paddles; indeed, when delineating the character of a bishop,
he expressly names this as one feature of it, "_no striker_." Let
masters give unto their servants that which is _just_ and _equal_, and
all that vast system of unrequited labor would crumble into ruin. Yes,
and if they once felt they had no right to the _labor_ of their servants
without pay, surely they could not think they had a right to their
wives, their children, and their own bodies. Again, how can it be said
Paul sanctioned slavery, when, as though to put this matter beyond all
doubt, in that black catalogue of sins enumerated in his first epistle
to Timothy, he mentions "_menstealers_," which word may be translated
"_slavedealers_." But you may say, we all despise slavedealers as much
as any one can; they are never admitted into genteel or respectable
society. And why not? Is it not because even you shrink back from the
idea of associating with those who make their fortunes by trading in the
bodies and souls of men, women, and children? whose daily work it is to
break human hearts, by tearing wives from their husbands, and children
from their parents? But why hold slavedealers as despicable, if their
trade is lawful and virtuous? and why despise them more than the
_gentlemen of fortune and standing_ who employ them as _their_ agents?
Why more than the _professors of religion_ who barter their
fellow-professors to them for gold and silver? We do not despise the
land agent, or the physician, or the merchant, and why? Simply because
their processions are virtuous and honorable; and if the trade of
men-jobbers was honorable, you would not despise them either. There is
no difference in _principle_, in _Christian ethics_, between the
despised slavedealer and the _Christian_ who buys slaves from, or sells
slaves to him; indeed, if slaves were not wanted by the respectable, the
wealthy, and the religious in a community, there would be no slaves in
that community, and of course no _slavedealers_. It is then the
_Christians_ and the _honorable men_ and _women_ of the South, who are
the _main pillars_ of this grand temple built to Mammon and to Moloch.
It is the _most enlightened_, in every country who are _most_ to blame
when any public sin is supported by public opinion, hence Isaiah says,
"_When_ the Lord hath performed his whole work upon mount _Zion_ and on
_Jerusalem_, (then) I will punish the fruit of the stout heart of the
king of Assyria, and the glory of his high looks." And was it not so?
Open the historical records of that age, was not Israel carried into
captivity B.C. 721, Judah B.C. 588, and the stout heart of the heathen
monarchy not punished until B.C. 536, fifty-two years _after_ Judah's,
and 185 years, _after_ Israel's captivity, when it was overthrown by
Cyrus, king of Persia? Hence, too, the apostle Peter says, "judgment
must _begin at the house of God_." Surely this would not be the case, if
the _professors of religion_ were not _most worthy_ of blame.

But it may be asked, why are _they_ most culpable? I will tell you, my
friends. It is because sin is imputed to us just in proportion to the
spiritual light we receive. Thus the prophet Amos says, in the name of
Jehovah, "_You only_ have I known of all the families of the earth:
_therefore_ I will punish _you_ for all your iniquities." Hear too the
doctrine of our Lord on this important subject: "The servant who _knew_
his Lord's will and _prepared not_ himself, neither did according to his
will, shall be beaten with _many stripes_:" and why? "For unto
whomsoever _much_ is given, _of him_ shall _much_ be required; and to
whom men have committed _much_, of _him_ they will ask the _more_." Oh!
then that the _Christians_ of the south would ponder these things in
their hearts, and awake to the vast responsibilities which rest _upon
them_ at this important crisis.

I have thus, I think, clearly proved to you seven propositions, viz.:
First, that slavery is contrary to the declaration of our independence.
Second, that it is contrary to the first charter of human rights given
to Adam, and renewed to Noah. Third, that the fact of slavery having
been the subject of prophecy, furnishes _no_ excuse whatever to
slaveholders. Fourth, that no such system existed under the patriarchal
dispensation. Fifth, that _slavery never_ existed under the Jewish
dispensation; but so far otherwise, that every servant was placed under
the _protection of law_, and care taken not only to prevent all
_involuntary_ servitude, but all _voluntary perpetual_ bondage. Sixth,
that slavery in America reduces a _man_ to a _thing_, a "chattel
personal," _robs him_ of _all_ his rights as a _human being_, fetters
both his mind and body, and protects the _master_ in the most unnatural
and unreasonable power, whilst it _throws him out_ of the protection of
law. Seventh, that slavery is contrary to the example and precepts of
our holy and merciful Redeemer, and of his apostles.

But perhaps you will be ready to query, why appeal to _women_ on this
subject? _We_ do not make the laws which perpetuate slavery. _No_
legislative power is vested in _us; we_ can do nothing to overthrow the
system, even if we wished to do so. To this I reply, I know you do not
make the laws, but I also know that _you are the wives and mothers, the
sisters and daughters of those who do_; and if you really suppose _you_
can do nothing to overthrow slavery, you are greatly mistaken. You can
do much in every way: four things I will name. 1st. You can read on this
subject. 2d. You can pray over this subject. 3d. You can speak on this
subject. 4th. You can act on this subject. I have not placed reading
before praying because I regard it more important, but because, in order
to pray right, we must understand what we are praying for; it is only
then we can "pray with the understanding and the spirit also."

1. Read then on the subject of slavery. Search the Scriptures daily,
whether the things I have told you are true. Other books and papers
might be a great help to you in this investigation, but they are not
necessary, and it is hardly probable that your Committees of Vigilance
will allow you to have any other. The _Bible_ then is the book I want
you to read in the spirit of inquiry, and the spirit of prayer. Even the
enemies of Abolitionists, acknowledge that their doctrines are drawn
from it. In the great mob in Boston, last autumn, when the books and
papers of the Anti-Slavery Society, were thrown out of the windows of
their office, one individual laid hold of the Bible and was about
tossing it out to the crowd, when another reminded him that it was the
Bible he had in his hand. _"Oh! 'tis all one,"_ he replied, and out went
the sacred volume, along with the rest. We thank him for the
acknowledgment. _Yes, "it is all one,"_ for our books and papers are
mostly commentaries on the Bible, and the Declaration. Read the _Bible_
then; it contains the words of Jesus, and they are spirit and life.
Judge for yourselves whether _he sanctioned_ such a system of oppression
and crime.

2. Pray over this subject. When you have entered into your closets, and
shut to the doors, then pray to your father, who seeth in secret, that
he would open your eyes to see whether slavery is _sinful_, and if it
is, that he would enable you to bear a faithful, open and unshrinking
testimony against it, and to do whatsoever your hands find to do,
leaving the consequences entirely to him, who still says to us whenever
we try to reason away duty from the fear of consequences, _"What is that
to thee, follow thou me."_ Pray also for the poor slave, that he may be
kept patient and submissive under his hard lot, until God is pleased to
open the door of freedom to him without violence or bloodshed. Pray too
for the master that his heart may be softened, and he made willing to
acknowledge, as Joseph's brethren did, "Verily we are guilty concerning
our brother," before he will be compelled to add in consequence of
Divine judgment, "therefore is all this evil come upon us." Pray also
for all your brethren and sisters who are laboring in the righteous
cause of Emancipation in the Northern States, England and the world.
There is great encouragement for prayer in these words of our Lord.
"Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in any name, he will give it to
you"--Pray then without ceasing, in the closet and the social circle.

3. Speak on this subject. It is through the tongue, the pen, and the
press, that truth is principally propagated. Speak then to your
relatives, your friends, your acquaintances on the subject of slavery;
be not afraid if you are conscientiously convinced it is _sinful_, to
say so openly, but calmly, and to let your sentiments be known. If you
are served by the slaves of others, try to ameliorate their condition as
much as possible; never aggravate their faults, and thus add fuel to the
fire of anger already kindled, in a master and mistress's bosom;
remember their extreme ignorance, and consider them as your Heavenly
Father does the _less_ culpable on this account, even when they do wrong
things. Discountenance _all_ cruelty to them, all starvation, all
corporal chastisement; these may brutalize and _break_ their spirits,
but will never bend them to willing, cheerful obedience. If possible,
see that they are comfortably and _seasonably_ fed, whether in the house
or the field; it is unreasonable and cruel to expect slaves to wait for
their breakfast until eleven o'clock, when they rise at five or six. Do
all you can, to induce their owners to clothe them well, and to allow
them many little indulgences which would contribute to their comfort.
Above all, try to persuade your husband, father, brothers and sons, that
_slavery is a crime against God and man_, and that it is a great sin to
keep _human beings_ in such abject ignorance; to deny them the privilege
of learning to read and write. The Catholics are universally condemned,
for denying the Bible to the common people, but, _slaveholders must not_
blame them, for _they_ are doing the _very same thing_, and for the very
same reason, neither of these systems can bear the light which bursts
from the pages of that Holy Book. And lastly, endeavour to inculcate
submission on the part of the slaves, but whilst doing this be faithful
in pleading the cause of the oppressed.

"Will _you_ behold unheeding,
Life's holiest feelings crushed,
Where _woman's_ heart is bleeding,
Shall _woman's_ voice be hushed?"

4. Act on this subject. Some of you _own_ slaves yourselves. If you
believe slavery is _sinful_, set them at liberty, "undo the heavy
burdens and let the oppressed go free." If they wish to remain with you,
pay them wages, if not, let them leave you. Should they remain, teach
them, and have them taught the common branches of an English education;
they have minds, and those minds _ought to be improved_. So precious a
talent as intellect, never was given to be wrapt in a napkin and buried
in the earth. It is the _duty_ of all, as far as they can, to improve
their own mental faculties, because we are commanded to love God with
_all our minds_, as well as with all our hearts, and we commit a great
sin, if we _forbid or prevent_ that cultivation of the mind in others,
which would enable them to perform this duty. Teach your servants, then,
to read, &c., and encourage them to believe it is their _duty_ to learn,
if it were only that they might read the Bible.

But some of you will say, we can neither free our slaves nor teach them
to read, for the laws of our state forbid it. Be not surprised when I
say such wicked laws _ought to be no barrier_ in the way of your duty,
and I appeal to the Bible to prove this position. What was the conduct
of Shiprah and Puah, when the king of Egypt issued his cruel mandate,
with regard to the Hebrew children? "_They_ feared _God_, and did _not_
as the King of Egypt commanded them, but saved the men children alive."
And be it remembered, that it was through _their_ faithfulness that
Moses was preserved. This great and immediate emancipator was indebted
to a _woman_ for his spared life, and he became a blessing to the whole
Jewish nation. Did these _women_ do right in disobeying that monarch?
"_Therefore_ (says the sacred text,) _God dealt well_ with them, and
made them houses" Ex. i. What was the conduct of Shadrach, Meshach, and
Abednego, when Nebuchadnezzar set up a golden image in the plain of
Dura, and commanded all people, nations, and languages, to fall down and
worship it? "Be it known, unto thee, (said these faithful _Jews_) O
king, that _we will not_ serve thy gods, nor worship the image which
thou hast set up." Did these men _do right in disobeying the law_ of
their sovereign? Let their miraculous deliverance from the burning fiery
furnace, answer; Dan. iii. What was the conduct of Daniel, when Darius
made a firm decree that no one should ask a petition of any man or God
for thirty days? Did the prophet cease to pray? No! "When Daniel _knew
that the writing was signed_, he went into his house, and his windows
being _open_ towards Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a
day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime."
Did Daniel do right thus to _break_ the law of his king? Let his
wonderful deliverance out of the mouths of the lions answer; Dan. vii.
Look, too, at the Apostles Peter and John. When the rulers of the Jews,
"_commanded them not_ to speak at all, nor teach in the name of Jesus,"
what did they say? "Whether it be right in the sight of God, to hearken
unto you more than unto God, judge ye." And what did they do? "They
spake the word of God with boldness, and with great power gave the
Apostles witness of the _resurrection_ of the Lord Jesus;" although
_this_ was the very doctrine, for the preaching of which, they had just
been cast into prison, and further threatened. Did these men do right? I
leave _you_ to answer, who now enjoy the benefits of their labors and
sufferings, in that Gospel they dared to preach when positively
commanded _not to teach any more_ in the name of Jesus; Acts iv.

But some of you may say, if we do free our slaves, they will be taken up
and sold, therefore there will be no use in doing it. Peter and John
might just as well have said, we will not preach the gospel, for if we
do, we shall be taken up and put in prison, therefore there will be no
use in our preaching. _Consequences_, my friends, belong no more to
_you_, than they did to these apostles. Duty is ours and events are
God's. If you think slavery is sinful, all _you_ have to do is to set
your slaves at liberty, do all you can to protect them, and in humble
faith and fervent prayer, commend them to your common Father. He can
take care of them; but if for wise purposes he sees fit to allow them to
be sold, this will afford you an opportunity of testifying openly,
wherever you go, against the crime of _manstealing_. Such an act will be
_clear robbery_, and if exposed, might, under the Divine direction, do
the cause of Emancipation more good, than any thing that could happen,
for, "He makes even the wrath of man to praise him, and the remainder of
wrath he will restrain."

I know that this doctrine of obeying _God_, rather than man, will be
considered as dangerous, and heretical by many, but I am not afraid
openly to avow it, because it is the doctrine of the Bible; but I would
not be understood to advocate resistance to any law however oppressive,
if, in obeying it, I was not obliged to commit _sin_. If for instance,
there was a law, which imposed imprisonment or a fine upon me if I
manumitted a slave, I would on no account resist that law, I would set
the slave free, and then go to prison or suffer the penalty. If a law
commands me to _sin I will break it_; if it calls me to _suffer_, I will
let it take its course _unresistingly_. The doctrine of blind obedience
and unqualified submission to _any human_ power, whether civil or
ecclesiastical, is the doctrine of despotism, and ought to have no place
among Republicans and Christians.

But you will perhaps say, such a course of conduct would inevitably
expose us to great suffering. Yes! my christian friends, I believe it
would, but this will _not_ excuse you or any one else for the neglect of
_duty_. If Prophets and Apostles, Martyrs, and Reformers had not been
willing to suffer for the truth's sake, where would the world have been
now? If they had said, we cannot speak the truth, we cannot do what we
believe is right, because the _laws of our country or public opinion are
against us_, where would our holy religion have been now? The Prophets
were stoned, imprisoned, and killed by the Jews. And why? Because they
exposed and openly rebuked public sins; they opposed public opinion; had
they held their peace, they all might have lived in ease and died in
favor with a wicked generation. Why were the Apostles persecuted from
city to city, stoned, incarcerated, beaten, and crucified? Because they
dared to _speak the truth_; to tell the Jews, boldly and fearlessly,
that _they_ were the _murderers_ of the Lord of Glory, and that, however
great a stumbling-block the Cross might be to them, there was no other
name given under heaven by which men could be saved, but the name of
Jesus. Because they declared, even at Athens, the seat of learning and
refinement, the self-evident truth, that "they be no gods that are made
with men's hands", and exposed to the Grecians the foolishness of
worldly wisdom, and the impossibility of salvation but through Christ,
whom they despised on account of the ignominious death he died. Because
at Rome, the proud mistress of the world, they thundered out the terrors
of the law upon that idolatrous, war-making, and slave-holding
community. Why were the martyrs stretched upon the rack, gibbetted and
burnt, the scorn and diversion of a Nero, whilst their tarred and
burning bodies sent up a light which illuminated the Roman capital? Why
were the Waldenses hunted like wild beasts upon the mountains of
Piedmont, and slain with the sword of the Duke of Savoy and the proud
monarch of France? Why were the Presbyterians chased like the partridge
over the highlands of Scotland--the Methodists pumped, and stoned, and
pelted with rotten eggs--the Quakers incarcerated in filthy prisons,
beaten, whipped at the cart's tail, banished and hung? Because they
dared to _speak_ the _truth_, to _break_ the unrighteous _laws_ of their
country, and chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God,
"not accepting deliverance," even under the gallows. Why were Luther and
Calvin persecuted and excommunicated, Cranmer, Ridley, and Latimer
burnt? Because they fearlessly proclaimed the truth, though that truth
was contrary to public opinion, and the authority of Ecclesiastical
councils and conventions. Now all this vast amount of human suffering
might have been saved. All these Prophets and Apostles, Martyrs, and
Reformers, might have lived and died in peace with all men, but
following the example of their great pattern, "they despised the shame,
endured the cross, and are now set down on the right hand of the throne
of God," having received the glorious welcome of "well _done_ good and
faithful servants, enter ye into the joy of your Lord."

But you may say we are _women_, how can _our_ hearts endure persecution?
And why not? Have not _women_ arisen in all the dignity and strength of
moral courage to be the leaders of the people, and to bear a faithful
testimony for the truth whenever the providence of God has called them
to do so? Are there no _women_ in that noble army of martyrs who are now
singing the song of Moses and the Lamb? Who led out the women of Israel
from the house of bondage, striking the timbrel, and singing the song of
deliverance on the banks of that sea whose waters stood up like walls of
crystal to open a passage for their escape? It was a _woman_; Miriam,
the prophetess, the sister of Moses and Aaron. Who went up with Barak to
Kadesh to fight against Jabin, King of Canaan, into whose hand Israel
had been sold because of their iniquities? It was a _woman_! Deborah the
wife of Lapidoth, the judge, as well as the prophetess of that
backsliding people; Judges iv, 9. Into whose hands was Sisera, the
captain of Jabin's host delivered? Into the hand of a _woman_. Jael the
wife of Heber! Judges vi, 21. Who dared to _speak the truth_ concerning
those judgments which were coming upon Judea, when Josiah, alarmed at
finding that his people "had not kept the word of the Lord to do after
all that was written in the book of the Law," sent to enquire of the
Lord concerning these things? It was a _woman_. Huldah the prophetess,
the wife of Shallum; 2, Chron. xxxiv, 22. Who was chosen to deliver the
whole Jewish nation from that murderous decree of Persia's King, which
wicked Haman had obtained by calumny and fraud? It was a _woman_; Esther
the Queen; yes, weak and trembling _woman_ was the instrument appointed
by God, to reverse the bloody mandate of the eastern monarch, and save
the _whole visible church_ from destruction. What human voice first
proclaimed to Mary that she should be the mother of our Lord? It was a
_woman_! Elizabeth, the wife of Zacharias; Luke i, 42, 43. Who united
with the good old Simeon in giving thanks publicly in the temple, when
the child, Jesus, was presented there by his parents, "and spake of him
to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem?" It was a _woman_!
Anna the prophetess. Who first proclaimed Christ as the true Messiah in
the streets of Samaria, once the capital of the ten tribes? It was a
_woman_! Who ministered to the Son of God whilst on earth, a despised
and persecuted Reformer, in the humble garb of a carpenter? They were
_women_! Who followed the rejected King of Israel, as his fainting
footsteps trod the road to Calvary? "A great company of people and of
_women_;" and it is remarkable that to _them alone_, he turned and
addressed the pathetic language, "Daughters of Jerusalem weep not for
me, but weep for yourselves and your children." Ah! who sent unto the
Roman Governor when he was set down on the judgment seat, saying unto
him, "Have thou nothing to do with that just man, for I have suffered
many things this day in a dream because of him?" It was a _woman_! the
wife of Pilate. Although "_he knew_ that for envy the Jews had delivered
Christ," yet _he_ consented to surrender the Son of God into the hands
of a brutal soldiery, after having himself scourged his naked body. Had
the _wife_ of Pilate sat upon that judgment seat, what would have been
the result of the trial of this "just person?"

And who last hung round the cross of Jesus on the mountain of Golgotha?
Who first visited the sepulchre early in the morning on the first day of
the week, carrying sweet spices to embalm his precious body, not knowing
that it was incorruptible and could not be holden by the bands of death?
These were _women_! To whom did he _first_ appear after his
resurrection? It was to a _woman_! Mary Magdalene; Mark xvi, 9. Who
gathered with the apostles to wait at Jerusalem, in prayer and
supplication, for "the promise of the Father;" the spiritual blessing of
the Great High Priest of his Church, who had entered, _not_ into the
splendid temple of Solomon, there to offer the blood of bulls, and of
goats, and the smoking censer upon the golden altar, but into Heaven
itself, there to present his intercessions, after having "given himself
for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savor?"
_Women_ were among that holy company; Acts i, 14. And did _women_ wait
in vain? Did those who had ministered to his necessities, followed in
his train, and wept at his crucifixion, wait in vain? No! No! Did the
cloven tongues of fire descend upon the heads of _women_ as well as men?
Yes, my friends, "it sat upon _each one of them_;" Acts ii, 3. _Women_
as well as men were to be living stones in the temple of grace, and
therefore _their_ heads were consecrated by the descent of the Holy
Ghost as well as those of men. Were _women_ recognized as fellow
laborers in the gospel field? They were! Paul says in his epistle to the
Philippians, "help those _women_ who labored with me, in the gospel;"
Phil. iv, 3.

But this is not all. Roman _women_ were burnt at the stake, _their_
delicate limbs were torn joint from joint by the ferocious beasts of the
Ampitheatre, and tossed by the wild bull in his fury, for the diversion
of that idolatrous, warlike, and slaveholding people. Yes, _women_
suffered under the ten persecutions of heathen Rome, with the most
unshrinking constancy and fortitude; not all the entreaties of friends,
nor the claims of new born infancy, nor the cruel threats of enemies
could make _them_ sprinkle one grain of incense upon the altars of Roman
idols. Come now with me to the beautiful valleys of Piedmont. Whose
blood stains the green sward, and decks the wild flowers with colors not
their own, and smokes on the sword of persecuting France? It is
_woman's_, as well as man's? Yes, _women_ were accounted as sheep for
the slaughter, and were cut down as the tender saplings of the wood.

But time would fail me, to tell of all those hundreds and thousands of
_women_, who perished in the Low countries of Holland, when Alva's sword
of vengeance was unsheathed against the Protestants, when the Catholic
Inquisitions of Europe became the merciless executioners of vindictive
wrath, upon those who dared to worship God, instead of bowing down in
unholy adoration before "my Lord God the _Pope_," and when England, too,
burnt her Ann Ascoes at the stake of martyrdom. Suffice it to say, that
the Church, after having been driven from Judea to Rome, and from Rome
to Piedmont, and from Piedmont to England, and from England to Holland,
at last stretched her fainting wings over the dark bosom of the
Atlantic, and found on the shores of a great wilderness, a refuge from
tyranny and oppression--as she thought, but _even here_, (the warm blush
of shame mantles my cheek as I write it,) _even here, woman_ was beaten
and banished, imprisoned, and hung upon the gallows, a trophy to the
Cross. And what, I would ask in conclusion, have _women_ done for the
great and glorious cause of Emancipation? Who wrote that pamphlet which
moved the heart of Wilberforce to pray over the wrongs, and his tongue
to plead the cause of the oppressed African? It was a _woman_, Elizabeth
Heyrick. Who labored assiduously to keep the sufferings of the slave
continually before the British public? They were _women_. And how did
they do it? By their needles, paint brushes and pens, by speaking the
truth, and petitioning Parliament for the abolition of slavery. And what
was the effect of their labors? Read it in the Emancipation bill of
Great Britain. Read it, in the present state of her West India Colonies.
Read it, in the impulse which has been given to the cause of freedom, in
the United States of America. Have English women then done so much for
the negro, and shall American women do nothing? Oh no! Already are there
sixty female Anti-Slavery Societies in operation. These are doing just
what the English women did, telling the story of the colored man's
wrongs, praying for his deliverance, and presenting his kneeling image
constantly before the public eye on bags and needle-books, card-racks,
pen-wipers, pin-cushions, &c. Even the children of the north are
inscribing on their handy work, "May the points of our needles prick the
slaveholder's conscience." Some of the reports of these Societies
exhibit not only considerable talent, but a deep sense of religious
duty, and a determination to persevere through evil as well as good
report, until every scourge, and every shackle, is buried under the feet
of the manumitted slave.

The Ladies' Anti-Slavery Society of Boston was called last fall, to a
severe trial of their faith and constancy. They were mobbed by "the
gentlemen of property and standing," in that city at their anniversary
meeting, and their lives were jeoparded by an infuriated crowd; but
their conduct on that occasion did credit to our sex, and affords a full
assurance that they will _never_ abandon the cause of the slave. The
pamphlet, Right and Wrong in Boston, issued by them in which a
particular account is given of that "mob of broad cloth in broad day,"
does equal credit to the head and the heart of her who wrote it. I wish
my Southern sisters could read it; they would then understand that the
women of the North have engaged in this work from a sense of _religious
duty_, and that nothing will ever induce them to take their hands from
it until it is fully accomplished. They feel no hostility to you, no
bitterness or wrath; they rather sympathize in your trials and
difficulties; but they well know that the first thing to be done to help
you, is to pour in the light of truth on your minds, to urge you to
reflect on, and pray over the subject. This is all _they_ can do for
you, _you_ must work out your own deliverance with fear and trembling,
and with the direction and blessing of God, _you can do it_. Northern
women may labor to produce a correct public opinion at the North, but if
Southern women sit down in listless indifference and criminal idleness,
public opinion cannot be rectified and purified at the South. It is
manifest to every reflecting mind, that slavery must be abolished; the
era in which we live, and the light which is overspreading the whole
world on this subject, clearly show that the time cannot be distant when
it will be done. Now there are only two ways in which it can be
effected, by moral power or physical force, and it is for _you_ to
choose which of these you prefer. Slavery always has, and always will
produce insurrections wherever it exists, because it is a violation of
the natural order of things, and no human power can much longer
perpetuate it. The opposers of abolitionists fully believe this; one of
them remarked to me not long since, there is no doubt there will be a
most terrible overturning at the South in a few years, such cruelty and
wrong, must be visited with Divine vengeance soon. Abolitionists
believe, too, that this must inevitably be the case if you do not
repent, and they are not willing to leave you to perish without
entreating you, to save yourselves from destruction; well may they say
with the apostle, "am I then your enemy because I tell you the truth,"
and warn you to flee from impending judgments.

But why, my dear friends, have I thus been endeavoring to lead you
through the history of more than three thousand years, and to point you
to that great cloud of witnesses who have gone before, "from works to
rewards?" Have I been seeking to magnify the sufferings, and exalt the
character of woman, that she "might have praise of men?" No! no! my
object has been to arouse _you_, as the wives and mothers, the daughters
and sisters, of the South, to a sense of your duty as _women_, and as
Christian women, on that great subject, which has already shaken our
country, from the St. Lawrence and the lakes, to the Gulf of Mexico, and
from the Mississippi to the shores of the Atlantic; _and will continue
mightily to shake it_, until the polluted temple of slavery fall and
crumble into ruin. I would say unto each one of you, "what meanest thou,
O sleeper! arise and call upon thy God, if so be that God will think
upon us that we perish not." Perceive you not that dark cloud of
vengeance which hangs over our boasting Republic? Saw you not the
lightnings of Heaven's wrath, in the flame which leaped from the
Indian's torch to the roof of yonder dwelling, and lighted with its
horrid glare the darkness of midnight? Heard you not the thunders of
Divine anger, as the distant roar of the cannon came rolling onward,
from the Texian country, where Protestant American Rebels are fighting
with Mexican Republicans--for what? For the re-establishment of
_slavery_; yes! of American slavery in the bosom of a Catholic Republic,
where that system of robbery, violence, and wrong, had been legally
abolished for twelve years. Yes! citizens of the United States, after
plundering Mexico of her land, are now engaged in deadly conflict, for
the privilege of fastening chains, and collars, and manacles--upon whom?
upon the subjects of some foreign prince? No! upon native born American
Republican citizens, although the fathers of these very men declared to
the whole world, while struggling to free themselves from the three
penny taxes of an English king, that they believed it to be a
_self-evident_ truth that _all men_ were created equal, and had an
_unalienable right to liberty_.

Well may the poet exclaim in bitter sarcasm,

"The fustian flag that proudly waves
In solemn mockery o'er _a land of slaves_."

Can you not, my friends, understand the signs of the times; do you not
see the sword of retributive justice hanging over the South, or are you
still slumbering at your posts?--Are there no Shiphrahs, no Puahs among
you, who will dare in Christian firmness and Christian meekness, to
refuse to obey the _wicked laws_ which require _woman to enslave, to
degrade and to brutalize woman_? Are there no Miriams, who would rejoice
to lead out the captive daughters of the Southern States to liberty and
light? Are there no Huldahs there who will dare to _speak the truth_
concerning the sins of the people and those judgments, which it requires
no prophet's eye to see, must follow if repentance is not speedily
sought? Is there no Esther among you who will plead for the poor devoted
slave? Read the history of this Persian queen, it is full of
instruction; she at first refused to plead for the Jews; but, hear the
words of Mordecai, "Think not within thyself, that _thou_ shalt escape
in the king's house more than all the Jews, for _if thou altogether
holdest thy peace at this time_, then shall there enlargement and
deliverance arise to the Jews from another place: but _thou and thy
father's house shall be destroyed_." Listen, too, to her magnanimous
reply to this powerful appeal; "_I will_ go in unto the king, which is
_not_ according to law, and if I perish, I perish." Yes! if there were
but _one_ Esther at the South, she _might_ save her country from ruin;
but let the Christian women there arise, as the Christian women of Great
Britain did, in the majesty of moral power, and that salvation is
certain. Let them embody themselves in societies, and send petitions up
to their different legislatures, entreating their husbands, fathers,
brothers and sons, to abolish the institution of slavery; no longer to
subject _woman_ to the scourge and the chain, to mental darkness and
moral degradation; no longer to tear husbands from their wives, and
children from their parents; no longer to make men, women, and children,
work _without wages_; no longer to make their lives bitter in hard
bondage; no longer to reduce _American citizens_ to the abject condition
of _slaves_, of "chattels personal;" no longer to barter the _image of
God_ in human shambles for corruptible things such as silver and gold.

The _women of the South can overthrow_ this horrible system of
oppression and cruelty, licentiousness and wrong. Such appeals to your
legislatures would be irresistible, for there is something in the heart
of man which _will bend under moral suasion_. There is a swift witness
for truth in his bosom, which _will respond to truth_ when it is uttered
with calmness and dignity. If you could obtain but six signatures to
such a petition in only one state, I would say, send up that petition,
and be not in the least discouraged by the scoffs and jeers of the
heartless, or the resolution of the house to lay it on the table. It
will be a great thing if the subject can be introduced into your
legislatures in any way, even by _women_, and _they_ will be the most
likely to introduce it there in the best possible manner, as a matter of
_morals_ and _religion_, not of expediency or politics. You may
petition, too, the different ecclesiastical bodies of the slave states.
Slavery must be attacked with the whole power of truth and the sword of
the spirit. You must take it up on _Christian_ ground, and fight against
it with Christian weapons, whilst your feet are shod with the
preparation of the gospel of peace. And _you are now_ loudly called upon
by the cries of the widow and the orphan, to arise and gird yourselves
for this great moral conflict "with the whole armour of righteousness on
the right hand and on the left."

There is every encouragement for you to labor and pray, my friends,
because the abolition of slavery as well as its existence, has been the
theme of prophecy. "Ethiopia (says the Psalmist) shall stretch forth her
hands unto God." And is she not now doing so? Are not the Christian
negroes of the south lifting their hands in prayer for deliverance, just
as the Israelites did when their redemption was drawing nigh? Are they
not sighing and crying by reason of the hard bondage? And think you,
that He, of whom it was said, "and God heard their groaning, and their
cry came up unto him by reason of the hard bondage," think you that his
ear is heavy that he cannot _now_ hear the cries of his suffering
children? Or that He who raised up a Moses, an Aaron, and a Miriam, to
bring them up out of the land of Egypt from the house of bondage, cannot
now, with a high hand and a stretched out arm, rid the poor negroes out
of the hands of their masters? Surely you believe that his arm is _not_
shortened that he cannot save. And would not such a work of mercy
redound to his glory? But another string of the harp of prophecy
vibrates to the song of deliverance: "But they shall sit every man under
his vine, and under his fig-tree, and _none shall make them afraid_; for
the mouth of the Lord of Hosts hath spoken it." The _slave_ never can do
this as long as he is a _slave_; whilst he is a "chattel personal" he
can own _no_ property; but the time _is to come_ when _every_ man is to
sit under _his own_ vine and _his own_ fig-tree, and no domineering
driver, or irresponsible master, or irascible mistress, shall make him
afraid of the chain or the whip. Hear, too, the sweet tones of another
string: "Many shall run to and fro, and _knowledge_ shall be increased."
Slavery is an insurmountable barrier to the increase of knowledge in
every community where it exists; _slavery, then, must be abolished
before_ this prediction can be fulfilled. The last chord I shall touch,
will be this, "They shall _not_ hurt nor destroy in all my holy
mountain."

_Slavery, then, must be overthrown before_ the prophecies can be
accomplished, but how are they to be fulfilled? Will the wheels of the
millennial car be rolled onward by miraculous power? No! God designs to
confer this holy privilege upon _woman_; it is through _their_
instrumentality that the great and glorious work of reforming the world
is to be done. And see you not how the mighty engine of _moral power_ is
dragging in its rear the Bible and peace societies, anti-slavery and
temperance, sabbath schools, moral reform, and missions? or to adopt
another figure, do not these seven philanthropic associations compose
the beautiful tints in that bow of promise which spans the arch of our
moral heaven? Who does not believe, that if these societies were broken
up, their constitutions burnt, and the vast machinery with which they
are laboring to regenerate mankind was stopped, that the black clouds of
vengeance would soon, burst over our world, and every city would witness
the fate of the devoted cities of the plain? Each one of these societies
is walking abroad through the earth scattering the seeds of truth over
the wide field of our world, not with the hundred hands of a Briareus,
but with a hundred thousand.

Another encouragement for you to labor, my friends, is, that you will
have the prayers and co-operation of English and Northern
philanthropists. You will never bend your knees in supplication at the
throne of grace for the overthrow of slavery, without meeting there the
spirits of other Christians, who will mingle their voices with yours, as
the morning or evening sacrifice ascends to God. Yes, the spirit of
prayer and of supplication has been poured out upon many, many hearts;
there are wrestling Jacobs who will not let go of the prophetic promises
of deliverance for the captive, and the opening, of prison doors to them
that are bound. There are Pauls who are saying, in reference to this
subject, "Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?" There are Marys sitting
in the house now, who are ready to arise and go forth in this work as
soon as the message is brought, "the master is come and calleth for
thee." And there are Marthas, too, who have already gone out to meet
Jesus, as he bends his footsteps to their brother's grave, and weeps,
_not_ over the lifeless body of Lazarus bound hand and foot in
grave-clothes, but over the politically and intellectually lifeless
slave, bound hand and foot in the iron chains of oppression and
ignorance. Some may be ready to say, as Martha did, who seemed to expect
nothing but sympathy from Jesus, "Lord, by this time he stinketh, for he
hath been dead four days." She thought it useless to remove the stone
and expose the loathsome body of her brother; she could not believe that
so great a miracle could be wrought, as to raise _that putrified body_
into life; but "Jesus said, take _ye_ away the stone;" and when _they_
had taken away the stone where the dead was laid, and uncovered the body
of Lazarus, then it was that "Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, Father,
I thank thee that thou hast heard me," &c. "And when he had thus spoken,
he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth." Yes, some may be ready
to say of the colored race, how can _they_ ever be raised politically
and intellectually, they have been dead four hundred years? But _we_
have _nothing_ to do with _how_ this is to be done; _our business_ is to
take away the stone which has covered up the dead body of our brother,
to expose the putrid carcass, to show _how_ that body has been bound
with the grave-clothes of heathen ignorance, and his face with the
napkin of prejudice, and having done all it was our duty to do, to stand
by the negro's grave, in humble faith and holy hope, waiting to hear the
life-giving command of "Lazarus, come forth." This is just what
Anti-Slavery Societies are doing; they are taking away the stone from
the mouth of the tomb of slavery, where lies the putrid carcass of our
brother. They want the pure light of heaven to shine into that dark and
gloomy cave; they want all men to see _how_ that dead body has been
bound, _how_ that face has been wrapped in the _napkin of prejudice_;
and shall they wait beside that grave in vain? Is not Jesus still the
resurrection and the life? Did He come to proclaim liberty to the
captive, and the opening of prison doors to them that are bound, in
vain? Did He promise to give beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for
mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness unto
them that mourn in Zion, and will He refuse to beautify the mind, anoint
the head, and throw around the captive negro the mantle of praise for
that spirit of heaviness which has so long bowed him down to the ground?
Or shall we not rather say with the prophet, "the zeal of the Lord of
Hosts _will_ perform this?" Yes, his promises are sure, and amen in
Christ Jesus, that he will assemble her that halteth, and gather her
that is driven out, and her that is afflicted.

But I will now say a few words on the subject of Abolitionism. Doubtless
you have all heard Anti-Slavery Societies denounced as insurrectionary
and mischievous, fanatical and dangerous. It has been said they publish
the most abominable untruths, and that they are endeavoring to excite
rebellions at the South. Have you believed these reports, my friends?
have _you_ also been deceived by these false assertions? Listen to me,
then, whilst I endeavor to wipe from the fair character of Abolitionism
such unfounded accusations. You know that _I_ am a Southerner: your know
that my dearest relatives are now in a slave State. Can you for a moment
believe I would prove so recreant to the feelings of a daughter and a
sister, as to join a society which seeking to overthrow slavery by
falsehood, bloodshed and murder? I appeal to you who have known and
loved me in days that are passed, can _you_ believe it? No! my friends.
As a Carolinian, I was peculiarly jealous of any movements on this
subject; and before I would join an Anti-Slavery Society, I took the
precaution of becoming acquainted with some of the leading
Abolitionists, of reading their publications and attending their
meetings, at which I heard addresses both from colored and white men;
and it was not until I was fully convinced that their principles were
_entirely pacific,_ and their efforts _only moral,_ that I gave my name
as a member to the Female Anti-Slavery Society of Philadelphia. Since
that time, I have regularly taken the Liberator, and read many
Anti-Slavery pamphlets and papers and books, and can assure you I
_never_ have seen a single insurrectionary paragraph, and never read any
account of cruelty which I could not believe. Southerners may deny the
truth of these accounts, but why do they not _prove_ them to be false.
Their violent expressions of horror at such accounts being believed,
_may_ deceive some, but they cannot deceive _me,_ for I lived too long
in the midst of slavery, not to know what slavery is. Such declarations
remind me of an assertion made by a Catholic priest, who said that his
Church had never persecuted Protestants for their religion, when it is
well known that the pages of history are black with the crimes of the
Inquisition. Oh! if the slaves of the South could only write a book, it
would vie, I have no doubt, with the horrible details of Catholic
cruelty. When _I_ speak of this system, "I speak that I do know," and I
am not afraid to assert, that Anti-Slavery publications have _not_
overdrawn the monstrous features of slavery at all. And many a
Southerner _knows_ this as well as I do. A lady in North Carolina
remarked to a friend of mine, about eighteen months since, "Northerners
know nothing at all about slavery; they think it is perpetual bondage
only; but of the _depth of degradation_ that word involves, they have no
conception; if they had, _they would never cease_ their efforts until so
_horrible_ a system was overthrown." She did not, know how faithfully
some Northern men and Northern women had studied this subject; how
diligently they had searched out the cause of "him who had none to help
him," and how fearlessly they had told the story of the negro's wrongs.
Yes, Northerners know _every_ thing about slavery now. This monster of
iniquity has been unveiled to the world, his frightful features
unmasked, and soon, very soon, will he be regarded with no more
complacency by the American republic than is the idol of Juggernaut,
rolling its bloody wheels over the crushed bodies of its prostrate
victims.

But you will probably ask, if Anti-Slavery societies are not
insurrectionary, why do Northerners tell us they are! Why, I would ask
you in return, did Northern senators and Northern representatives give
their votes, at the last sitting of congress, to the admission of
Arkansas Territory as a slave state? Take those men, one by one, and ask
them in their parlours, do you _approve of slavery?_ ask them on
_Northern_ ground, where they will speak the truth, and I doubt not
_every man_ of them will tell you, _no_! Why then, I ask, did _they_
give their votes to enlarge the mouth of that grave which has already
destroyed its tens of thousands! All our enemies tell _us_ they are as
much anti slavery as we are. Yes, my friends, thousands who are helping
you to bind the fetters of slavery on the negro, despise you in their
hearts for doing it; they rejoice that such an institution has not been
entailed upon them. Why then, I would ask, do _they_ lend you their
help? I will tell you, "they love _the praise of men more_ than the
praise of God." The Abolition cause has not yet become so popular as to
induce them to believe, that by advocating it in congress, they shall
sit still more securely in their seats there, and like the _chief
rulers_ in the days of our Saviour, though _many_ believed on him, yet
they did _not_ confess him, lest they should _be put out of the
synagogue_; John xii, 42, 43. Or perhaps like Pilate, thinking they
could prevail nothing, and fearing a tumult, they determined to release
Barabbas and surrender the just man, the poor innocent slave to be
stripped of his rights and scourged. In vain will such men try to wash
their hands, and say, with the Roman governor, "I am innocent of the
blood of this just person." Northern American statesmen are no more
innocent of the crime of slavery, than Pilate was of the murder of
Jesus, or Saul of that of Stephen. These are high charges, but I appeal
to _their hearts_; I appeal to public opinion ten years from now.
Slavery then is a national sin.

But you will say, a great many other Northerners tell us so, who can
have no political motives. The interests of the North, you must know, my
friends, are very closely combined with those of the South. The Northern
merchants and manufacturers are making _their_ fortunes out of the
_produce of slave labor_; the grocer is selling your rice and sugar; how
then can these men bear a testimony against slavery without condemning
themselves? But there is another reason, the North is most dreadfully
afraid of Amalgamation. She is alarmed at the very idea of a thing so
monstrous, as she thinks. And lest this consequence _might_ flow from
emancipation, she is determined to resist all efforts at emancipation
without expatriation. It is not because she _approves of slavery_, or
believes it to be "the corner stone of our republic," for she is as much
_anti-slavery_ as we are; but amalgamation is too horrible to think of.
Now I would ask _you_, is it right, is it generous, to refuse the
colored people in this country the advantages of education and the
privilege, or rather the _right_, to follow honest trades and callings
merely because they are colored? The same prejudice exists here against
our colored brethren that existed against the Gentiles in Judea. Great
numbers cannot bear the idea of equality, and fearing lest, if they had
the same advantages we enjoy, they would become as intelligent, as
moral, as religious, and as respectable and wealthy, they are determined
to keep them as low as they possibly can. Is this doing as they would be
done by? Is this loving their neighbor as _themselves_? Oh! that _such_
opposers of Abolitionism would put their souls in the stead of the free
colored man's and obey the apostolic injunction, to "remember them that
are in bonds _as bound with them_." I will leave you to judge whether
the fear of amalgamation ought to induce men to oppose anti-slavery
efforts, when _they_ believe _slavery_ to be _sinful_. Prejudice against
color, is the most powerful enemy we have to fight with at the North.

You need not be surprised, then, at all, at what is said _against_
Abolitionists by the North, for they are wielding a two-edged sword,
which even here, cuts through the _cords of caste_, on the one side, and
the _bonds of interest_ on the other. They are only sharing the fate of
other reformers, abused and reviled whilst they are in the minority; but
they are neither angry nor discouraged by the invective which has been
heaped upon them by slaveholders at the South and their apologists at
the North. They know that when George Fox and William Edmundson were
laboring in behalf of the negroes in the West Indies in 1671 that the
very _same_ slanders were propogated against them, which are _now_
circulated against Abolitionists. Although it was well known that Fox

Book of the day:
Facebook Google Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Pinterest