William Lloyd Garrison Memorial

William Lloyd Garrison Memorial, Boston, public art

Public Art : William Lloyd Garrison Memorial

Sculptor : © Olin Levi Warner (April 9th, 1844 – August 14th, 1896)

Description : A seated bronze statue of William Lloyd Garrison

Date Unveiled: 1886

Funded By : The Garrison Memorial was funded by public subscription

Location : The William Lloyd Garrison Memorial is located on Commonwealth Avenue, between Dartmouth and Exeter Street, Boston, Massachusetts.

Who was William Lloyd Garrison? : William Lloyd Garrison (December 12, 1805 – May 24, 1879) will be best remembered as the editor of the abolitionist newspaper The Liberator and the founder of the American Anti-Slavery Society. Did I also mention he was a great supporter of the women's suffrage movement? William Lloyd Garrison was born in Newburyport, Massachusetts, the son of British immigrants. His mother insisted on calling him by his middle name Lloyd.

At the age of 14 , Garrison began working at the Newburyport Herald as an apprentice compositor and it wasn't long before he was writing articles under the name Aristides.When his apprentisceship was up he and a young printer bought their own (short lived) newspaper, the Free Press.
When Garrison was 25 he joined the Abolition movement, an anti-slavery group who was pushing for the end of the slave trade and also for  granting freedom to slaves.At the time he was working for the Quaker Genius of Universal Emancipation newspaper in Baltimore, Maryland.
Garrison soon found himself in hot water when he wrote an article entitled "The Black List" and accused a Francis Todd, a ship owner, of being involved in the slave trade and that he was using his ship the Francis to transport them from Baltimore to New Orleans. That little libel charge resulted in Garrison being sentenced to 6 months jail because he couldn't afford the fine and court costs.In the end, after 7 weeks in jail, antislavery philanthropist Arthur Tappan bailed him out. Garrison soon exited Baltimore.

In 1831, Garrison returned to New England and founded a weekly anti-slavery newspaper of his own, The Liberator. In the ensuing years he founded several anti slave societies and even traveled to England to stir the anti slavery movement there as well. Trouble began brewing when Garrison allowed women (or should I say a group of feminists) to join the society upsetting some male members. In the end they left to start a rival organization called the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society which absolutely, positively did not admit women.

Throughout his life Garrison defiantly supported the "immediate and complete emancipation of all slaves", a view that more often than not saw him receiving death threats . During an Anti slave Society lecture in Boston Garrison was chased down the streets by an angry mob and was saved in the nick of time from a lynching.

On the 4th of July, 1844, Garrison took a copy of the Constitution and publically set it on fire declaring it as "a Covenant with Death, an Agreement with Hell," for its inclusion of slavery.

After the abolitiion of slavery in the US, Garrison turned his attention to the women's suffrage and of civil rights for blacks.

Trivia :

When William lloyd Garrison died eight abolitionist friends, both white and black, served as his pallbearers.

On December 12th, 2005, his descendants gathered in Boston for the first family reunion in about a century to celebrate Garrison's 200th Birthday.

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