The Black Abolitionist Papers - Vol. 1

By C. Peter Ripley | Go to book overview

29.
Henry Highland Garnet to Samuel Rhoads 5 December 1850

Henry Highland Garnet lectured on free produce and the Fugitive Slave Law at antislavery meetings in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Peckham, Stoke Newington, and London during the late fall of 1850. He also maintained a steady correspondence with free produce co-workers in the United States, including his 5 December letter to Quaker, free produce advocate Samuel Rhoads. By late 1850, Anna Richardson observed that nearly twenty-six British free produce associations had been established "chiefly in consequence of the lectures of H. H. Garnet." Garnet devoted the entire next year to delivering free produce lectures throughout Scotland, England, and Ireland, frequently at meetings arranged by these local associations. Schor, Henry Highland Garnet, 116-18.

HITCHIN, ENGLAND
Dec[ember] 5, 1850

Dear Friend: 1

Since my last letter was written, we have been laboring with unremitting effort in the Free-Labor Cause. We have renewed occasion daily to press on in the name and strength of God. Nothing but light and information on the subject is needed to arouse the whole country to sally forth and to labor in the Anti-Slavery fields.

Among the many bright signs of the times that are appearing, the interest that Capitalists take in the growth of cotton in other countries than America, is not the least important. Allowing their motives to be purely commercial, yet the effect of their movement will be the same upon slavery, and will do the thing that those benevolent people desire who base their efforts upon humane and moral principles.

We have been making an attempt to establish a wholesale warehouse for Free-Labor goods in London, and have every reason to believe that it will be speedily accomplished. Our humble efforts have created an increased demand for Free grown articles and it must continue to increase.

The Fugitive Slave Law 2 still fills the minds of the British people with wonder and amazement. Until America wipes that foul blot from her Statute book, she will have but little or no political influence upon Europe. Every body sneers at her high pretensions to liberty, as they are set off against her practices. The people do not seem disposed to deal in strong epithets to express their disapprobation of this great outrage upon human rights, but they are astonished and grieved to see the country expose its shame and hypocrisy to mankind. It is clearly seen that the measure has a tendency to cause the people to think upon the subject of

-232-

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