Mar 21, 2013 - Sale 2308

Sale 2308 - Lot 123

Price Realized: $ 2,880
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 4,000 - $ 6,000
(SLAVERY AND ABOLITION--PERIODICALS.) RUSSELL, GEORGE, OWNER, WRIGHT, ELIZUR, EDITOR The Massachusetts Abolitionist, Volume I, Number 1, February 7, 1839 through Volume I, number 52 for February 13, 1840. [Description.] Boston, 1839-1840

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the complete first year of this important newspaper. The Massachusetts Abolitionist was founded by George Russell and edited by Elizur Wright. Dedicated to the total erasure of slavery, the Abolitionist broke with the Garrisonians over policy issues, and held a more rigid stance, that included emancipation with no compensation for slaveholders. The Abolitionist was probably a little too radical for most and could not compete with the better backed Liberator and the Anti-Slavery Standard. After 1841, Wright changed the name of the paper to The Free American, but to no avail. It was finally absorbed by the Emancipator. Like most anti-slavery periodicals, the Abolitionist printed a good deal of poetry. A lot of the verse generated in opposition to slavery, was truly little more than well-meaning doggerel. However some of the verse found in the pages of the Massachusetts Abolitionist is truly striking. That of Richard Robert Madden is a prime example. The October 21 issue carries a 48 verse poem titled "The Slave Trade Merchant," an attack on S.B. Trist, the American Consul to Cuba who defended the slave traders. Madden (1798-1886) was employed in the British civil service from 1833, first as a justice of the peace in Jamaica, where he was one of six Special Magistrates sent to oversee the eventual liberation of Jamaica's slave population, according to the terms of the Slavery Abolition Act 1833. From 1835 he was Superintendent of the freed Africans in Havana and in 1839 became the investigating officer into the slave trade on the west coast of Africa.