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had imparted to them the mystery of reading, writing, and arithmetic. In this room gathered on the evening of January 6, 1832, fifteen brave and earnest souls. Their names it is well to repeat: They are William Lloyd Garrison, Oliver Johnson, Robert B. Hall, Arnold Buffum, William J. Snelling, John E. Fuller, Moses Thacher, Joshua Coffin, Stillman B. Newcomb, Benjamin C. Bacon, Isaac Knapp, Henry K. Stockton, David Lee Child, Samuel E. Sewall, Ellis Gray Loring. Twelve, the apostolic number, went away from that meeting, the New England Anti-Slavery Society. Just as the little company was about to separate at midnight, the spirit of prophecy fell on Garrison, who said to his followers : “We have met to-night in this obscure schoolhouse ; our numbers are few and our influence limited; but, mark my predictions,
immortal words: “I am in earnest; I will not equivocate : I will not excuse; I will not retreat a single inch; and I wilL BE HEARD.”
Next in point of time and perhaps importance is the building where was formed the first Anti-Slavery Society of the period. The scene of this momentous event was laid in still humbler and obscurer quarters. It was in the schoolroom for colored children (Boston did not then tolerate mixed schools), on the first floor of the African Baptist Church on Smith Court, off Belknap (now Joy) Street. This was the despised negro section of the city, known in the Pro-Slavery slang of the day as “ Vigger Hill." The building still stands there, a small two-story brick meeting-house. In the auditorium in the second story, the oppressed black man had the gospel preached to him every Sunday: while in the big dim room underneath, his children, on week days,
Faneuil Hall shall ere long echo with the Garrison, Phillips, Sumner, Wilson, and principles we have set forth. We shall Burlingame against the barbarism of shake the nation by their mighty power.” slavery and the aggressions of the slave A few years sufficed to justify the young power. And here, when driven from leader's confidence.
Tremont Temple by a Pro-Slavery mob, About this homely old meeting-house Wendell Phillips once led his supporters cluster stirring memories and illustrious and made his speech. Frederick Dougnames. Here in after years thundered lass, who was present, gives in a letter to
Ann Greene Phillips.
FROM THE "LIBERTY BELI," 1815: THE ORIGINAL AN ETCHING BY
J. ANDREWS, FROM A DAGUERROTYPE BY SOUTHWICK.
FROM A SILHOUETTE MADE IN LONDON IN 1841.
escaped the malice and violence of their Street and Cornhill, and the expectation enemies.
that George Thompson, the famous EngThe formation of the New England lish orator and Abolitionist, would address Anti-Slavery Society in 1832 was followed it. That noon an inflammatory handbill by that of the national organization in denouncing “ that infamous foreign scoun1833. From this time the tide of Aboli- drel, Thompson” and offering a purse of tionism rose rapidly to its flood. So also one hundred dollars “to reward the indidid the counter tide of Pro-Slavery oppo- vidual, who shall first lay violent hands” on sition. The consequence was a season of him, was distributed “in the insurance mobs all over the free states. The most offices, the reading-rooms, all along State memorable of the lawless attempts to Street, in the hotels, bar-rooms, and among abolish the Abolition movement in the the mechanics at the North End," and so North occurred in Boston, October 21, scattered about the town. And from 1835. It is known in Anti-Slavery annals every quarter of the town, men gathered as the “ Broadcloth Mob.” The sections to do the deed or to witness the outrages, of the city associated with the Abolition insomuch that between three and four movement, were more than doubled o'clock they were, according to various that day before the sun went down, estimates, from two to five thousand in by the performances of that eminently number. Both sides of Washington and “ respectable and influential ” mob of State Streets in the neighborhood of the “gentlemen of property and standing” Old State House, then used as the City in the community. The immediate occa- Hall and Post Office, were filled with the sion of the riot was the annual meeting spirit of mischief. The multitude lay of the Boston Female Anti-Slavery Society extended like a huge irregular cross. The that afternoon, at their hall in the head darkened in front of the Anti-Slavery building then numbered 46 Washington offices, the foot reached to Joy's BuildStreet, situated midway between State ing; one arm embraced the Old State