Letter from James Forten, Philadelphia, [Pennsylvania], to William Lloyd Garrison, 1831 Oct[ober] 20
@ Boston Public Library
DescriptionHolograph, signed.Title devised by cataloger.On verso, the letter is addressed to "Wm. Lloyd Garrison Esqr. Boston (Mass.)" and is postmarked with a brown, circular stamp reading "Phil 21 Oct".James Forten writes to William Lloyd Garrison pleased that Garrison "is still urging onward unintimidated by the many threats of personal violence from the South." He discusses the Southern hatred for the Liberator and how supporters of slavery see the Liberator "as one of the preminent agents, if not the sole cause of the late disturbance" [the slave rebellion led by Nat Turner]. He hopes that the insurrection "will be the means of bringing the evils of slavery more prominently before the public" and then calls the opposition in New Haven to a college for free African-American men "one of the most discreditable things for a free state that I ever heard of." He commends the role Simeon Smith Jocelyn in advocating for the college but regrets that "in that large assemblage ... none was willing to bring odium on themselves by taking the part of the oppressed of their own country, it is only foreign oppression, which calls forth the sympathy of the Americans." After the autograph, Forten shares his opinion of the term "Afric Americans" saying "it is generally disliked, that is by all I have heard express an opinion on the subject." He also tells Garrison about a family of 31 people, from Ohio, of whom 30 died after traveling to Liberia. Forten warns Garrison that American Colonization Society...
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