Autobiography: Memories and Experiences of Moncure Daniel Conway - Vol. 2

By Moncure Daniel Conway | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XIX.

Unitarians and Slavery--Rabbi Wise--The Abbé Miel--Free Lances of the Pulpit--Literary Studies--Evolution--Darwin's work--Emerson in Cincinnati--Edward Everett--My Marriage--Robert Collyer --The Woman Movement--Chess--Paul Morphy.

THERE appeared to me no cloud on the horizon when I found myself in Cincinnati with an anti--slavery congregation. Everywhere were signs of increasing anti-slavery sentiment. The Conference of Western Unitarian Churches ( 1858) passed a resolution that the cause of the slave was moral and religious, rightly belonging to our pulpits. But two of the societies were in slave States, that of the Rev. Mr. Heywood of Louisville, and that of the veteran Dr. Elliot of St. Louis, men of New England birth. Notwithstanding the moderation of our resolution, we had the sorrow of seeing Dr. Elliot and his strong delegation file solemnly out, never to return.

This action of the conference, reversing a timid resolution of three years before, was a relief to me. It had always been a burden to preach about slavery, and it was now less necessary to deal much with the subject. The incident was widely discussed in the papers, and the Cincinnati Enquirer (anti-Republican) described me as an ambitious agitator. I said to my people that inhumanity in man or nation must always prove a demon of unrest. A legend on which twenty-three years later I published a volume then first arose before me as a prophecy: "That fable of the Wandering Jew shall be a dread reality to the heart which knowingly drives from its threshold the Christ who falls there in the form of those who now bear the cross of wrong and oppression, and toil up the weary hills of life to their continual crucifixion."

About that time a little recrudescence of prejudice against Jews occurred in connection with an organisation called the Cincinnati Zouave Guard, against which I protested in the papers; and I even attacked Shakespeare on account of the

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Autobiography: Memories and Experiences of Moncure Daniel Conway - Vol. 2
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Dedication and Preface. vii
  • Chapter I 1
  • Chapter II 9
  • Chapter III 19
  • Chapter IV 32
  • Chapter V 43
  • Chapter VI 52
  • Chapter VII 58
  • Chapter IX 86
  • Chapter X 101
  • Chapter XI 112
  • Chapter XII 126
  • Chapter XIII 139
  • Chapter XIV 156
  • Chapter XV 165
  • Chapter XVI 179
  • Chapter XVII 196
  • Chapter XVIII 222
  • Chapter XIX 243
  • Chapter XX 259
  • Chapter XXI 281
  • Chapter XXII 302
  • Chapter XXIII 324
  • Chapter XXIV 345
  • Chapter XXV 351
  • Chapter XVII 362
  • Chapter XXVII 387
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