THE CRUSADE AGAINST SLAVERY: 1830-60 by Louis Filler


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The obvious result of years of research, this latest volume in the Harper ""American Nation"" series presents a detailed, readable and well-documented study of the growth and crystallization of pre-Civil War anti-slavery sentiment in America. Stressing the fact that not all anti-slavery adherents were abolitionists, the author writes of the beginnings of the anti-slavery movement after the Revolution, of efforts to end the slave trade, and of the impetus given slavery by the cotton-gin, which by making slavery profitable in cotton-growing states forced the South to defend it and brought a corresponding increase in anti-slavery sentiment in the North. In the 1830's under the slave-owning Jackson the movement turned to one for abolition and became the hub of all reform movements in that era of reform. Men such as the Quaker, Benjamin Lundy, and the fiery William Lloyd Garrison preached abolition; Northern efforts to enforce anti-Negro and Fugitive Slave Laws brought adherents to the cause; and in Rhode Island Prudence Crandall was sent to prison for teaching Negro children. Men were kidnapped from Northern states and sent to Southern prisons for aiding fugitive slaves, presses of abolition papers were burned, in Illinois an abolitionist, Lovejoy, was lynched, but the fight continued, to explode in 1860 in John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry. Well written and carefully annotated, this fine book should stand as the definitive study of a complicated subject. A book for scholars, not laymen, its bibliography alone will make it an invaluable work of reference for both teachers and students.

Publisher: Harper