Showing posts with label Thompson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Thompson. Show all posts

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Andover NH Pictures

From Andover NH History History of the town of Andover New Hampshire, 1751-1906  
The Illustrated Laconian. History and industries of Laconia, N.H. Descriptive of the city and its manufacturing and business interests, Proceedings of New Hampshire Historical Society



Carey House, Proctor Academy, c. 1915

Monday, July 28, 2014

William Lloyd Garrison Mob Boston 1835

The lock which was used to secure Garrison in a prison, for his protection from men who wanted to lynch him, during the October, 1835 mob action.

From The Liberator Files 1831-1865

A Moment in Abolition History

A view by Horace Seldon

Often history records an event which later is seen as a crucial “moment”, filled with meaning beyond the specific time, place and personalities involved. Such a time happened in London, in June, 1840. In another place I’ve written about the international significance of that time, when Garrison and other men from New England refused to participate in an international anti-slavery convention, because women delegates had been denied recognition. The effect on the movement became significant as a “watershed moment”.

In Boston, in 1835, a similarly significant “moment” occurred, once again with William Lloyd Garrison at the center, this time encountered by an angry “mob”. To tell the story I will rely on Garrison’s own words, on the historical accounts of Henry Mayer, and of Garrison’s sons, Wendell Phillips Garrison, and Francis Jackson Garrison. Any particular “moment” has a historical context, and the year 1835, is a time which Garrison himself called a “reign of terror”, threatening individual abolitionists and the movement itself. See Papers to Garrison Mob by Lyman

On the left is Wendell Phillips, son of the City of Boston’s first mayor, eloquent Abolition speaker; Garrison in the middle; on the right, George Thompson, English Abolition leader, close collaborator with Garrison. The Garrisons named two of their sons after Phillips and Thompson. Photo from Rare Book Room Boston Public Library

In New England in premonition of “terror”, late 1834 saw the destruction of Prudence Crandall’s school in Canterbury, Connecticut. She had opened her school for young black women, and that act enflamed a hatred that warned abolitionists of the depth of what previously Garrison had called the “mountains of ice” which needed to be melted. Then came the hot hatred of 1835. In Charleston, South Carolina, a post office was seized by a crowd of people who seized mailbags full of anti-slavery pamphlets; the fire which burned the literature became the scene of the hanging of effigies of Arthur Tappan and Garrison. In Nashville, Amos Dresser, a young man who had joined abolitionist protests at Lane Seminary, was publicly assailed and lashed twenty times in the public market.

Prudence Crandall (September 3, 1803 - January 28, 1890), a schoolteacher raised as a Quaker, stirred controversy with her education of African-American girls in Canterbury, Connecticut. Her private school, opened in the fall of 1831,was boycotted when she admitted a 17-year-old African-American female student in the autumn of 1833; resulting in what is widely regarded as the first integrated classroom in the United States. She is Connecticut's official State Heroine.

In Canaan, New Hampshire, voters of the town assembled in town meeting, and acted to appoint a committee to oversee the physical removal from the town of Noyes Academy. That Academy had been started to educate young black children, under leadership which included one of Garrison’s devotees, David Child. Also in New Hampshire, in that same year, in a church in Northfield, George Storrs, was lifted from his knees while offering an anti-slavery prayer, and thrown out of the church! This “reign of terror” became very real for Boston, and for Garrison.

George Thompson, strong abolitionist leader from England, had come to the United States in the previous year, and was still touring the country in 1835. His speeches brought strength to the movement here, but he was under constant threat wherever he appeared. At an August speech in Boston abolitionist women had cleverly maneuvered him away from a threatening crowd. In the same month, a stone meant for Thompson, was thrown through a window, where he was speaking, in Lynn. Slaveholder hatred and fear took radical form. Subscriptions to a fund for procuring the heads of Garrison, Thompson, and Tappan, were invited to be made through a bookstore in Norfolk, Virginia. The Richmond Enquirer urged that these “wanton fanatics” be “put down forever”, and warned the North against interference with the right of slavery. Some Northern commercial interests, threatened with the loss of Southern patronage, or the destruction of Southern branches, responded by bringing pressure against abolitionists in Boston.

George Thompson, at age 47, in 1850-1851. United Kingdom abolitionist, close friend and ally to Garrison, after meeting in London, in 1833

One Boston newspaper, the Commercial Gazette, responded to an announcement of an August 14 annual meeting of the Boston Female Anti-Slavery Society, and predicted resistance. “This resistance will not come from a rabble, but from men of property and standing, who have a large interest at stake in this community…” The paper warned ladies to keep away, and threatened that if Thompson were to appear, he would be lynched.

Faneuil Hall was denied for abolitionist meetings, but on August 21, the same Hall was filled with those who wanted to “protect the rights of the South”. Harrison Gray Otis, retired Mayor, was a featured organizer-speaker for that crowded meeting. Otis spoke of the intent of abolitionists to create auxiliary societies in “every state and municipality”, asserting that this proved them to be “imminently dangerous” and “hostile to the spirit and letter of the constitution”. In the same period Samuel May had a speech broken up in Haverhill, and John Greenleaf Whittier was pelted with eggs in Concord. The Garrison family was frightened by a gallows which was planted on the doorstep of their home, on Brighton Street.

The postponed meeting of the Boston Female Anti-Slavery Society, was announced for three o-clock on Wednesday afternoon, October 21st. It was to be held at 46 Washington Street, in a hall at the Anti-Slavery office. The Commercial Gazette reported on the indignation among business men who thought that “women ought to be engaged in some better business than that of stirring up strife between the South and the North on this matter of slavery… they ought to be at home, attending to their domestic concerns …”

Believing that George Thompson was to speak, anti-abolition forces distributed handbills which urged people to “snake out” Thompson, and offered a one hundred dollar prize for the first to lay violent hands on him. It hoped that Thompson would “be brought to the tar-kettle before dark”. These warnings were widely distributed to insurance offices, hotels, reading rooms, from State Street to the North end. Fearful merchants petitioned Mayor Lyman to prevent the meeting. Photo from Caren Collection

On the day of the meeting, a crowd had gathered along Washington Street, and in the vicinity of City Hall. Hisses, sarcastic cheers, racial epithets were accompanied by demands for “Thompson”. The crowd was assured by the Mayor, who had arrived, that Thompson was not in the building. Word spread soon that Garrison was there. He had come from his home on Brighton Street, where he had hosted a dinner for John Vashon, a leader of the Pittsburgh colored community; he was accompanied by Charles Burleigh, abolitionist from Connecticut. Garrison, after consulting with the women leaders of the meeting, retired into the Anti-Slavery office, separated from the gathering by a partition. (See Letters to John Vashon--Garrison)

The birth of John Bathan Vashon in 1792 is celebrated on this date. He was a Black seaman, businessman and abolitionist. 

The President of the Society, Mary Parker, proceeded with the business of the meeting, with the customary prayers and reading of Scripture. She was interrupted by the Mayor bursting into the room, requesting that the ladies abandon the meeting and go home. A conference between Parker, Maria Chapman, and the Mayor resulted in the decision by the ladies to adjourn the meeting and reconvene at the Chapman home at 11 West Street.

The story then becomes one of a remarkably dignified walk by the women, black and white, arm in arm, six blocks down Washington Street, through an angry mob, still resolute in determination to continue their meeting. It is also the story of a portion of the mob gaining access to the building, grabbing Garrison, and his final release from the crowd by “two burly Irishmen not know as abolitionists”. He was then rushed by constables, into a carriage, and taken to the Leveret Street jail for safety overnight. John Vashon visited Garrison the next morning, where he was in prison, and gave him a hat to replace the one which had been “cut in pieces by the knives of men of propoerty and standing”.

History most often gives emphasis to the threat to Garrison, who was indeed nearly lynched, and could have been killed by some in the mob. Here I want to lift up the courage of the women who walked through that mob, undeterred in the immediate purpose of their meeting, or the overarching purpose of abolition. Here also it is appropriate to some who were present that day who were led to become dedicated abolitionists.

Young Wendell Phillips, son of Boston‘s first Mayor, dated his “conversion” to the abolitionist cause from the day when he witnessed the mob. Henry Ingersoll Bowditch, just returned from medical training in Europe, knowing nothing of Garrison, was also infuriated by the mob’s action against Garrison. He vowed himself an abolitioinst from that moment, and shortly after subscribed to Garrison’s Liberator.

Edmund Quincy, son of the second Mayor, was alerted toward the rights of abolition. His father, Josiah Quincy, then President of the City Council, saw the mob from his office at 27 State Street, rushed to Garrison’s side until he was placed in the carriage and driven off, . Rev. James E. Crawford, later of Nantucket, was walking on State Street and encountered the riotous mob, and “his heart and soul became fully dedicated to the cause of immediate emancipation. Thirty years later, William H. Logan told of how, soon after the mob had left, he had received from Sheriff Parkman, remnants of a pair of pantaloons which had been torn from Garrison. At that same 1855 remembrance of the occasion, William C. Nell reported that a Boston merchant, David Tilden, Esq., “immediately became a subscriber to the Liberator and continued a reader until his death. Reports of several others of the affect of being witness may be suspect, but the affect on Harriett Martineau was widely reported. Martineau, an English teacher, professor, liberator, had been in the country for months, conducting what might be termed a sociological study of slavery. She had interviewed slave owners and abolitionists alike, adhering to her academic style for the most part. On the historic day, she was on her way from Salem to Providence, passing through Boston as the crowd was gathering. Friends, seeing the well-dressed crowd, and knowing it was close to a Post Office, informed her that the crowd was assembled because it was a “busy foreign-post day”. In Providence she heard the factual account. She volunteered her interest and within a few weeks she was a speaker at the Society. In December she visited Garrison in Boston, and became a worthy supporter.

This date, October 21, 1835 is worthy of celebration as a “moment” of gathering strength for the Abolition Movement in the United States. Five years later, in London, came a similarly significant “moment” of strength for abolitionists in the United Kingdom. In that “moment”, a major issue revolved around what some have called the “woman” question.

Public Sentiment at the North Date: Saturday, March 7, 1835  Liberator (Boston, MA) 

 [Boston; Post; Saturday; Garrison; William L. Garrison; Jailor; Wednesday; Deputy; Sheriff; Parkman] Tuesday, October 27, 1835  Salem Gazette (Salem, MA)

Other Reads

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


Charles C Coffin July 26, 1823 – March 2, 1896
By Charles Carleton Coffin
The Bay State Monthly, Volume 3, No. 2 Project Gutenberg

There were few settlers in the Pemigewasset Valley when John Marsh of East Haddam, Connecticut, at the close of the last century, with his wife, Mehitable Percival Marsh, traveling up the valley of the Merrimack, selected the town of Campton, New Hampshire, as their future home. It was a humble home. Around them was the forest with its lofty pines, gigantic oaks, and sturdy elms, to be leveled by the stalwart blows of the vigorous young farmer. The first settlers of the region endured many hardships—toiled early and late, but industry brought its rewards. The forest disappeared; green fields appeared upon the broad intervals and sunny hillsides. A troop of children came to gladden the home. The ninth child of a family of eleven received the name of Sylvester, born September 30, 1803.
The home was located among the foot-hills on the east bank of the Pemigewasset; it looked out upon a wide expanse of meadow lands, and upon mountains as delectable as those seen by the Christian pilgrim from the palace Beautiful in Bunyan's matchless allegory.

Rev. John Marsh

Copied from the Memorial History of Hartford County
It was a period ante-dating the employment of machinery. Advancement was by brawn, rather than by brains. Three years before the birth of Sylvester Marsh an Englishman, Arthur Scholfield, determined to make America his home. He was a machinist. England was building up her system of manufactures, starting out upon her great career as a manufacturing nation determined to manufacture goods for the civilized world, and especially for the United States. Parliament had enacted a law prohibiting the carrying of machinist's tools out of Great Britain. The young mechanic was compelled to leave his tools behind. He had a retentive memory and active mind; he settled in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and set himself to work to construct a machine for the carding of wool, which at that time was done wholly by hand. The Pittsfield Sun of November 2, 1801, contained an advertisement of the first carding machine constructed in the United States. Thus it read:
"Arthur Scholfield respectfully informs the inhabitants of Pittsfield and the neighboring towns that he has a carding machine, half a mile west of the meeting-house, where they may have their wool carded into rolls for twelve and a half cents per pound; mixed, fifteen cents per pound. If they find the grease and pick the grease in it will be ten cents per pound, and twelve and a half mixed."
The first broadcloth manufactured in the United States was by Scholfield in 1804, the wool being carded in his machine and woven by hand.

In 1808 Scholfield manufactured thirteen yards of black broadcloth, which was presented to James Madison, and from which his inaugural suit was made. A few Merino sheep had been imported from France, and Scholfield, obtaining the wool, and mixing it with the coarse wool of the native sheep, produced what at that time was regarded as cloth of superior fineness. The spinning was wholly by hand.
The time had come for a new departure in household economies. Up to 1809 all spinning was done by women and girls. This same obscure county paper, the Pittsfield Sun, of January 4, 1809, contained an account of a meeting of the citizens of that town to take measures for the advancement of manufactures. The following resolution was passed: "Resolved that the introduction of spinning-jennies, as is practiced in England, into private families is strongly recommended, since one person can manage by hand the operation of a crank that turns twenty-four spindles."
This was the beginning of spinning by machinery in this country. This boy at play—or rather, working—on the hill-side farm of Campton, was in his seventh year. Not till he was nine did the first wheeled vehicle make its appearance in the Pemigewasset valley. Society was in a primitive condition. The only opportunity for education was the district school, two miles distant—where, during the cold and windy winter days, with a fire roaring in the capacious fire-place, he acquired the rudiments of education. A few academies had been established in the State, but there were not many farmer's sons who could afford to pay, at that period, even board and tuition, which in these days would be regarded as but a pittance.
Very early in life this Campton boy learned that Pemigewassett valley, though so beautiful, was but an insignificant part of the world. Intuitively his expanding mind comprehended that the tides and currents of progress were flowing in other directions, and in April, 1823, before he had attained his majority, he bade farewell to his birthplace, made his way to Boston—spending the first night at Concord, New Hampshire, having made forty miles on foot; the second at Amoskeag, the third in Boston, stopping at the grandest hotel of that period in the city—Wildes', on Elm street, where the cost of living was one dollar per day. He had but two dollars and a half, and his stay at the most luxurious hotel in the city of thirty-five thousand inhabitants was necessarily brief. He was a rugged young man, inured to hard labor, and found employment on a farm in Newton, receiving twelve dollars a month. In the fall he was once more in Campton. The succeeding summer found him at work in a brick yard. In 1826 he was back in Boston, doing business as a provision dealer in the newly-erected Quincy market.
But there was a larger sphere for this young man, just entering manhood, than a stall in the market house. In common with multitudes of young men and men in middle age he was turning his thoughts towards the boundless West. Ohio was the bourne for emigrants at that period. Thousands of New Englanders were selecting their homes in the Western Reserve. At Ashtabula the young man from Quincy market began the business of supplying Boston and New York with beef and pork, making his shipments via the Erie Canal.
But there was a farther West, and in the Winter of 1833-4 he proceeded to Chicago, then a village of three hundred inhabitants, and began to supply them, and the company of soldiers garrisoning Fort Dearborn, with fresh beef; hanging up his slaughtered cattle upon a tree standing on the site now occupied by the Court House.
This glance at the condition of society and the mechanic arts during the boyhood of Sylvester Marsh, and this look at the struggling village of Chicago when he was in manhood's prime, enables us to comprehend in some slight degree the mighty trend of events during the life time of a single individual; an advancement unparalleled through all the ages.
For eighteen years, the business begun under the spreading oak upon what is now Court House square, in Chicago, was successfully conducted,—each year assuming larger proportions. He was one of the founders of Chicago, doing his full share in the promotion of every public enterprise. The prominent business men with whom he associated were John H. Kuisie, Baptiste Bounier, Deacon John Wright, Gurdon S. Hubbard, William H. Brown, Dr. Kimberly, Henry Graves, the proprietor of the first Hotel, the Mansion house, the first framed two-story building erected, Francis Sherman, who arrived in Chicago the same year and became subsequent builder of the Sherman House.
Mr. Marsh was the originator of meat packing in Chicago, and invented many of the appliances used in the process—especially the employment of steam.
In common with most of the business men of the country, he suffered loss from the re-action of the speculative fever which swept over the country during the third decade of the century; but the man whose boyhood had been passed on the Campton hills was never cast down by commercial disaster. His entire accumulations were swept away, leaving a legacy of liability; but with undaunted bravery he began once more, and by untiring energy not only paid the last dollar of liability, but accumulated a substantial fortune—engaging in the grain business.
His active mind was ever alert to invent some method for the saving of human muscle by the employment of the forces of nature. He invented the dried-meal process, and "Marsh's Caloric Dried Meal" is still an article of commerce. See Mount Washington Cog Railroad


While on a visit to his native state in 1852, he ascended Mount Washington, accompanied by Rev. A.C. Thompson, pastor of the Eliot Church, Roxbury, and while struggling up the steep ascent, the idea came to him that a railroad to the summit was feasable and that it could be made a profitable enterprise. He obtained a charter for such a road in 1858, but the breaking out of the war postponed action till 1866, when a company was formed and the enterprise successfully inaugurated and completed.
Leaving Chicago he returned to New England, settling in Littleton, New Hampshire, in 1864; removing to Concord, New Hampshire, in 1879, where the closing years of his life were passed.
Mr. Marsh was married, first, April 4, 1844, to Charlotte D. Bates, daughter of James Bates of Munson, Massachusetts. The union was blessed with three children, of whom but one, Mary E. Marsh, survives. She resides in New York. Mrs. Marsh died August 20, 1852, at the age of thirty-six years. She was a woman of the finest mental qualities, highly educated, and very winning in her person and manners.
Mr. Marsh married, second, March 23, 1855, Cornelia H. Hoyt, daughter of Lumas T. Hoyt of St. Albans, Vermont. Three daughters of the five children born of this marriage live and reside with their mother in Concord, New Hampshire. Mr. Marsh died December 30, 1884, in Concord, and was buried in Blossom Hill Cemetery.
Mr. Marsh was to the very last years of his life a public-spirited citizen, entering heartily into any and every scheme which promised advantage to his fellow man. His native State was especially dear to him. He was very fond of his home and of his family. He was a devout Christian, and scrupulous in every business transaction not to mislead his friends by his own sanguine anticipations of success. His faith and energy were such that men yielded respect and confidence to his grandest projects; and capital was always forthcoming to perfect his ideas.
He had a wonderful memory for dates, events, and statistics, always maintaining his interest in current events. Aside from the daily newspapers, his favorite reading was history. The business, prosperity, and future of this country was an interesting theme of conversation with him. In business he not only possessed good judgment, wonderful energy, and enthusiasm, but caution.
He was philosophical in his desire to acquire wealth, knowing its power to further his plans, however comprehensive and far-reaching. Immense wealth was never his aim. He was unselfish, thinking ever of others. He had a strong sense of justice, and desired to do right—not to take advantage of another. He was generous and large in his ideas. He was benevolent, giving of his means in a quiet and unostentatious way. He took a great interest in young men, helping them in their struggles, with advice, encouragement, and pecuniary assistance. Students, teachers, helpless women, colored boys and girls, in early life slaves, came in for a share of his large-hearted bounty, as well as the Church with its many charities and missions.
Mr. Marsh was a consistent Christian gentleman, for many years identified with the Congregational denomination. He was a Free Mason; in politics he was an anti-slavery Whig, and later a Republican. In private life he was a kind, generous, and indulgent husband and father, considerate of those dependent on him, relieving them of every care and anxiety.
He was a typical New Englander, a founder of institutions, a promoter of every enterprise beneficial to society.