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Autographs for Freedom

Autographs for Freedom
Author: Various
Title: Autographs for Freedom
Release Date: 2019-02-18
Type book: Text
Copyright Status: Public domain in the USA.
Date added: 27 March 2019
Count views: 67
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He is not ashamed to call them Brethren.




Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1853, by
in the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the District of




There is, perhaps, little need of detaining the kindreader, even for one moment, in this the vestibule of ourTemple of Liberty, to state the motives and reasons forthe publication of this collection of Anti-slavery testimonies.

The good cause to which the volume is devoted;—theinfluence which must ever be exerted by persons ofexalted character, and high mental endowments;—thefact that society is slow to accept any cause that has notthe baptism of the acknowledged noble and good;—thehappiness arising from making any exertion to amelioratethe condition of the injured race amongst us, will, atonce, suggest reasons and motives for sending forth thisoffering, which, while it shall prove acceptable as a GiftBook, may help to swell the tide of that sentiment that,by the Divine blessing, will sweep away from this otherwisehappy land, the great sin of SLAVERY.

Should this publication be instrumental in casting oneray of hope on the heart of one poor slave, or should itdraw the attention of one person, hitherto uninterested,[vi]to the deep wrongs of the bondman, or cause one sincereand earnest effort to promote emancipation, we believethat the kind contributors, who have generously respondedto our call, not less than the members of our Society,will feel themselves gratified and compensated.

The proceeds of the sale of the “Autographs forFreedom,” will be devoted to the dissemination oflight and truth on the subject of slavery throughout thecountry.

On behalf of “The Rochester Ladies’ Anti-SlaverySociety,”


Rochester, 1852.



Be up and doing,Hon. Wm. H. Seward.1
Caste and Christ,Mrs. H. E. B. Stowe. 4
Letter from the Earl of Carlisle to Mrs. H. B. Stowe,  7
Momma Charlotte,Mrs. C. M. Kirkland.13
A Name,Hon. Horace Mann.18
Letter from Joseph Sturge, 19
Slavery and Polygamy,R. Hildreth.20
The Way,John G. Whittier.23
The Slave and Slave-Owner,Miss Sedgwick. 24
Letter from the Bishop of Oxford,  28
Hide the Outcasts,Rev. William Goodell.29
Can Slaves rightfully resist and fight? Rev. Geo. W. Perkins.33
Death in Life,Ebenezer Button.41
True Reform, Mrs. C. W. H. Dall.43
How Long?J. M. Whitfield.46
Letter from Wilson Armistead, 55
Impromptu Stanzas,J. M. Eells.59
John Murray of Glasgow, James M’Cune Smith. 62
Power of American Example, Lewis Tappan.68
The Gospel as a Remedy for Slavery,Lewis Tappan.71[viii]
Letter from Rev. C. G. Finney, 74
The Slave’s Prayer,Miss C. E. Beecher.75
The Struggle, Hon. Charles Sumner. 77
Work and Wait,Horace Greeley.78
The Great Emancipation, Gerrit Smith.81
Ode,Rev. John Pierpont.82
Passages in the Life of a Slave Woman,Annie Parker.85
Story Telling, 95
The Man-Owner, Rev. E. Buckingham.99
Damascus in 1851,Rev. F. W. Holland.104
Religious, Moral, and Political Duties, Lindley Murray Moore.114
Why Slavery is in the Constitution,James G. Birney.116
The Two Altars, Mrs. H. B. Stowe. 127
Outline of a Man, Rev. R. R. Raymond.148
The Heroic Slave Woman, Rev. S. J. May.161
Kossuth, John Thomas.166
The Heroic Slave,Frederick Douglass.174
A Plea for Free Speech, Prof. J. H. Raymond.240
Placido,Prof. W. G. Allen.256




Can nothing be done for Freedom? Yes,much can be done. Everything can be done.Slavery can be confined within its present bounds.It can be meliorated. It can be, and it must beabolished. The task is as simple as its performancewould be beneficent and as its rewardswould be glorious. It requires only that we followthis plain rule of conduct and course ofactivity, namely, to do, everywhere, and on everyoccasion what we can, and not to neglect norrefuse to do what we can at any time, because atthat precise time and on that particular occasionwe cannot do more. Circumstances define possibilities.When we have done our best to shapethem and to make them propitious, we may restsatisfied that superior wisdom has, nevertheless,[2]controlled them and us, and that it will be satisfiedwith us if we do all the good that shall thenbe found possible.

But we can, and we must begin deeper andlower than the composition and combination offactions. Wherein do the security and strengthof slavery consist? You answer, in the constitutionof the United States, and in the constitutions andlaws of the slave-holding States. Not at all. Itis in the erroneous sentiments of the Americanpeople. Constitutions and laws can no more riseabove the virtue of the people than the limpidstream can climb above its native spring. Inculcatethe love of freedom and the sacredness of therights of man under the paternal roof. See to it,that they are taught in the schools and in thechurches. Reform your own codes and expurgatethe vestiges of slavery. Reform your ownmanners and customs and rise above the prejudicesof caste. Receive the fugitive who lays hisweary limbs at your door, and defend him as youwould your household gods, for he, not they, haspower to bring down blessings on your hearth.Correct your error that slavery has any constitutionalguarantee that may not be released, andthat ought not to be relinquished. Say to slavery,when it shows its bond and demands its pound offlesh, that if it draws one drop of blood its lifeshall pay the forfeit. Inculcate that the freeStates can exercise the rights of hospitality andhumanity, that Congress knows no finality and[3]can debate, that Congress can at least mediatewith the slave-holding States, that at least futuregenerations may be bought and given up to freedom.Do all this, and inculcate all this, in thespirit of moderation and benevolence, and not ofretaliation and fanaticism, and you will ultimatelybring the parties of this country into a commoncondemnation and even the slave-holding Statesthemselves into a renunciation of slavery, which isnot less necessary for them than for the commonsecurity and welfare. Whenever the public mindshall be prepared, and the public conscience shalldemand the abolition of slavery the way to do itwill open before us, and then mankind will besurprised at the ease with which the greatest ofsocial and political evils can be removed.

William H. Seward.



He is not ashamed to call them brethren.

Ho! thou dark and weary stranger
From the tropic’s palmy strand,
Bowed with toil, with mind benighted,
What wouldst thou upon our land?
Am I not, O man, thy brother?
Spake the stranger patiently,
All that makes thee, man, immortal,
Tell me, dwells it not in me?
I, like thee, have joy, have sorrow,
I, like thee, have love and fear,
I, like thee, have hopes and longings
Far beyond this earthly sphere.
Thou art happy,—I am sorrowing,
Thou art rich, and I am poor;
In the name of our one Father
Do not spurn me from your door.
Thus the dark one spake, imploring,
To each stranger passing nigh,
But each child and man and woman,
Priest and Levite passed him by.
Spurned of men,—despised, rejected,
Spurned from school and church and hall,
Spurned from business and from pleasure,
Sad he stood, apart from all.
Then I saw a form all glorious,
Spotless as the dazzling light,
As He passed, men veiled their faces,
And the earth, as heaven, grew bright.
Spake he to the dusky stranger,
Awe-struck there on bended knee,
Rise! for I have called thee brother,
I am not ashamed of thee.
When I wedded mortal nature
To my Godhead and my throne,
Then I made all mankind sacred,
Sealed all human for mine own.
By Myself, the Lord of ages,
I have sworn to right the wrong,
I have pledged my word, unbroken,
For the weak against the strong.
And upon my gospel banner
I have blazed in light the sign,
He who scorns his lowliest brother,
Never shall have hand of mine.
Hear the word!—who fight for freedom!
Shout it in the battle’s van!
Hope! for bleeding human nature!
Christ the God, is Christ the man!

H. E. B. Stowe.



Andover, July 22, 1852.



London, July 8, 1852.


I should be very sorry indeed to refuse anyrequest addressed to me from “the RochesterLadies’ Anti-Slavery Association.”

At the same time I really should feel at a losswhat to send, but as I am on the point of sendingoff a letter to the authoress of Uncle Tom’s Cabin,I venture to submit a copy of it to those who Ifeel sure must be fond of such a countrywoman.

Your very faithful Servant,


London, July 8, 1852.


I have allowed some time to elapse before Ithanked you for the great honor and kindness youdid me in sending to me, from yourself, a copy ofUncle Tom’s Cabin. I thought it due to the subject[8]of which I perceived that it treated, not tosend a mere acknowledgment, as I confess froma motive of policy I am apt to do, upon the firstarrival of the book. I therefore determined toread, before I wrote.

Having thus read, it is not in the stiff and conventionalform of compliment, still less in thetechnical language of criticism, that I am aboutto speak of your work. I return my deep andsolemn thanks to Almighty God, who has ledand enabled you to write such a book.

I do feel, indeed, the most thorough assurancethat in His good providence such a book cannothave been written in vain. I have long felt thatslavery is by far the topping question of the worldand age we live in, involving all that is mostthrilling in heroism, and most touching in distress,—inshort, the real epic of the universe. Theself-interest of the parties most nearly concernedon the one hand, the apathy and ignorance ofunconcerned observers on the other, have left theseaugust pretensions to drop very much out of sight,and hence my rejoicing that a writer has appearedwho will be read, and must be felt, and that happenwhat may to the transactions of slavery, theywill no longer be suppressed, “carent quia vatesacr.”

I trust that what I have just said was notrequired to show the entire sympathy I entertainwith respect to the main truth and leading scopeof your high argument, but we live in a world only[9]too apt to regard the accessories and accidents ofa subject above its real and vital essence; no onecan know so well as you how much the externalappearance of the negro detracts from the romanceand sentimentality which undoubtedly mightattach to his position and his wrongs, and on thisaccount it does seem to me proportionately importantthat you should have brought to yourportraiture great grace of style, great power oflanguage, a play of humor which relieves andbrightens even the dark depth of the back-groundwhich you were called upon to reveal, a force ofpathos which, to give it the highest praise, does notlay behind even all the dread reality, and, above all,a variety, a discrimination, and a truth in thedelineation of

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