[American Anti-Slavery Society] Williams, R.G..
HUMAN RIGHTS. OUR OBJECT IS LIBERTY FOR ALL; GAINED BY MORAL POWER, AND REGULATED BY IMPARTIAL LAWS. VOL. II, NO. 3.
New York: September, 1836.
Folio.  pp, printed in four columns per page. Tears around edges, creased and with significant toning to the upper front half and extensive foxing throughout.
This rare monthly, an organ of the American Anti-Slavery Society, began in July 1835 and ended with the February 1839 issue. Among other interesting features, the present issue prints a "Form of a Petition for the Abolition of Slavery in the District of Columbia. To The Congress of the United States." Not in Lomazow, Mott, Sabin. OCLC records copies from all the other years, but no copies of this issue.
While there was opposition to slavery in the nation’s capital, the greater forces against slavery came from the outside, through newspapers and petitions. Many petitioned Congress to end slavery in the nation’s capital and the organizing efforts in the District included the Washington Abolition Society which was organized in 1827. But the opposition to ending slavery and the slave trade in the District was such a contested issue that a gag rule instituted in 1836 prohibited a discussion of slavery on the floor of Congress. Though Abolitionists including John Quincy Adams vehemently opposed the gag rule, standard-bearers of slavery in the District fought tirelessly for it. Eventually, in 1848, the House of Representative passed a resolution to prohibit the slave trade in the District of Columbia. Although the resolution did not gain enough traction to end the slave trade in the District, it played an influential role in the congressional debates over slavery and the slave trade. The Compromise of 1850 admitted California in the Union as a free state; the former Mexican territories were admitted as part slaveholding states and part free soilers states; and the slave trade in the District of Columbia was abolished. The 1850 Compromise provided the necessary momentum for the enactment of the District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act of April 16, 1862 that abolished slavery in the Nation’s Capital.
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