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Slavery! Slavery, pure, absolute, unalloyed-extinguishing the soul, rendering needless all setters of the body, reducing man to the implicit subserviency of the dogNo! there is no ' peculiar institution' under heaven, comparable with this, and has not been since the fall.
Mr. Thompson witnessed this associate procedure; and on his return to his lodgings, took up the question with professional composure, What has the Church to do with slavery?' He made it the theme of his evening lecture. The chapel was full. Many clergymen of the association, and gentlemen of high ecclesiastical and literary rank attended. I wish they had all attended. I wish the entire ministry of New England could have heard that lecture. • What has the Church to do with Slavery?' was the tremendous interrogatory, and would to Heaven the American church could have listened to the mighty reasonings in reply. Could they have been within the reach of that argument, and heard it in the spirit of Christians in seasons of revivals,—the 'incendiary' appeal of George Thompson, that night, would have proved, by the blessing of God, the overthrow, forever, of American Slavery.
At the animated and urgent request of many who were desirous to hear him again, he remained and lectured on Wednesday evening. The chapel was thronged. Very many clergymen attended-more than on the preceding evening. It was as reverend and respectable an auditory as the land could afford. The theme of the lecture was the crime of the abolitionists and the sin of their cause. It was that they pleaded for the black man. It was because he was black. The orator seemed to give full play to his feelings and his genius. His illustration of the two philanthropists in the captive's dungeon at midnight, one demanding of the other, as they came nigh and heard his moan, and the clank of his chain, as he tossed in his restless sleep-that they should rescue him and give him his liberty, and the other, in the true spirit of prudential expediency, questioning of the captive's form, his country, his features, his complexion, and to all these, the reply He is a man, in thundering succession, was overpoweringterrible. I do not remember any thing like its effect upon the auditory. The whole lecture was of grand and lofty
eloquence, realizing to me what I had imagined of the powers of Sheridan or Patrick Henry.
At the close of the lecture, a resolution drawn by Mr. Whittier, and vindicating the claims of Anti-Slavery upon the church, and upon all patriots. and Christians, was offered by Rev. Mr. Curtis of Pittsfield. Rev. Mr. Root of Dover, in the chair. It was seconded-twice read, that it might be distinctly heard, and carried by an almost universal vote—not a hand rising to the contrary call. After this, under impressions that I could not resist, in such terms as I could command, I moved the reverend and learned assembly, that thanks be proffered to our beloved brother Thompson, for his affectionate labors among us, and that the vote be expressed by rising. The motion was answered by a spontaneous, simultaneous, and enthusiastic rising, that seemed to leave no unthanking or unthankful individual in town.
LETTER FROM MARBLEHEAD.
THURSDAY EVENING, Oct. 22, 1835.
My Dear FRIEND
And fellow-laborer in the cause of freedom, for two millions two hundred and fifty thousand American slaves :
Since despatching the few hasty lines which I wrote you on receipt of the news of yesterday's proceedings in Boston, I have yielded to a strong impulse to address you a longer communication, more fully expressive of the views and feelings with which the signs of the times have inspired me. I despair, however, of finding words to express adequately the deep sympathy I cherish with you in the midst of your trials and persecutions, and the feelings of my soul, as I contemplate passing events, and follow out to its ultimate results, the headlong wickedness of this generation. Surely, we can enter somewhat into the experience of the lamenting prophet, when he exclaimed,– Oh that
head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the sins of this people.
How unutterably affecting is a view of the present aspect of the country! The enslavement of the colored population seems to be but one of a hideous host of evils, threatening in their combined influence, the overthrow of the fairest prospects of this wide republic. Of the abolition of slavery I feel certain. Its doom is sealed. I read it in the holy and inflexible resolves of thousands who are coming up to the contest with the spirit of martyrs, and in the strength, and under the leadership of Jehovah. I read it in the blind fury and unmitigated malignity Southern tyrants and their Northern participants in crime. I read it in the gathering frown, and bursting indignation of Christendom. The consummation of our hopes draws
nigh. The times are pregnant with great events. America must witness another revolution, and the second will be far more illustrious in its results than the first. The second will be a moral revolution. A struggle for higher, holier, more catholic, more patriotic principles : and the weapons of our warfare will not be carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. During the progress of this latter revolution will be witnessed the advent of · Liberty,' in the true sense of that now much abused and perverted name :
O spring to light, auspicious babe, be born.'
While, however, I have no fears respecting the ultimate effectuation of the object so dear to our hearts, I have many fears for the perpetuity of this nation as a Republic —for the continuance of these States as a Union-for the existence of that Constitution, which, properly respected and maintained, would bless the country and the world. These fears do not arise from any tendency to such results in the principles of abolition in themselves considered. Those principles are conservative of the peace, and happiness, and security of the nation; and, if voluntarily acted upon, would heal many of the feuds and animosities which have endangered the integrity of the Union. My fears are founded upon the symptoms every where exhibited, of an approach to mob-supremacy, and consequent anarchy. In every direction I see the minority prostrate before the majority; who, despite of law, the constitution, and natural equity, put their heel upon the neck of the weaker portion, and perpetrate every enormity in the name of ' public opinion. Public OPINION' is at this hour the demon of oppression-harnessing to the ploughshare of ruin, the ignorant and interested opposers of the truth in every section of this heaven-favored, but mob-cursed land. Already the Constitution lies prostrate—an insulted, wounded, impotent form. A thousand hands are daily uplifted to send assassin daggers to its heart.
Look on the pages of the daily press, and say, if traitors to liberty and the Constitution are not seduously schooling a hood-winked multitude to commit a suicidal act upon their own boasted freedom? Count (if they can be counted) the disturban
ces occuring all over the land, and say, is not mob-supremacy the order of the day? Where is the freedom of speech? where the right of association ? where the security of national conveyances ? where the inviolability of personal liberty? where the sanctity of the domestic circle? where the protection of property ? where the prerogatives of the judge ? where the trial by jury? Gone, or fast disappearing. The minority in every place speak, and write and meet, and walk, at the peril of their lives. I speak not now exclusively of the Anti-Abolition mania, which has more recently displayed itself with all its froth and foam, and thirst for spoliation and blood. I have in mind the Anti-Mormanism of Missouri, and its accompa. nying heart-rending persecutions :--the Anti-Anti-Masonic fury, with the ABDUCTION OF MORGAN, and its other grim features of destruction and death :the burning zeal of Anti-Temperance, with its bonfires and effigies, and its innumerable assaults upon persons and property :the Anti-Gambling, and the Anti-Insurrection tragedies of Southern States, with their awful waste of human life, and the frequent sacrifice of the blood of INNOCENT VICTIMS:—but tiine would fail to tell of Anti-Whig, and Anti-Jackson, and Anti-Convent, and Anti-Bank, and Anti-Kean, and Anti-Anderson, and Anti-Graham, and Anti-Joel Parker, and Anti-Cheever, and Anti-Colored School, and Anti-House of Ill-fame riots, with all the other anti-men and anti-women, anti-black, and anti-red, and anti-meat, and anti-drink riots, and mobs, and persecutions, which have distinguished this age and land of Revivals, and Missions, and Bible Societies, and educational operations, and liberty, and independence, and equality. Suffice it to say, that for some years past, all who have dared to act, or think aloud, in opposition to the will of the majority, have held their property and being dependent on the clemency of A MOB. Were I a citizen of this country, and did there seem no escape from such a dreadful state of things—if I did not, on behalf of the righteous and consistent, (for, thank God there are thousands of such, who cease not day nor night to weep and pray for their country,) hope and believe for brighter days and better deeds, I should choose to own the dominion of the darkest despot that ever sealed the lip of truth, or made the soul