Black Emigration movements - Foreign Support and Opposition, 1787-1865

document collections

GREAT BRITAIN'S SIERRA LEONE COLONY:  DESTINATION AND MODEL FOR EARLY EMIGRATION MOVEMENTS, 1787-1830

The first collection demonstrates that Great Britain's free black settlement in Sierra Leone, established in 1787, substantially influenced three overlapping groups of American black emigration advocates.  The first group included prominent antislavery Americans like Samuel Hopkins and John Jay.  Their correspondence with Sierra Leone's sponsoring philanthropists - like Granville Sharp, John Erskine and Zachary Macaulay - indicated a desire to send free blacks to Sierra Leone for two purposes:  to free them from the yoke of American racism and to support a broader missionary effort to Christianize and uplift the people of Africa.  The included document from Thomas Jefferson, “'African Colonization'; Letter from Thomas Jefferson to J. L______" (1811) establishes that the idea of black emigration to Sierra Leone had influenced the federal government as well.  Leading the second group was Paul Cuffe, a black American merchant who, unlike Hopkins and Jay, gained formal approval from Sierra Leone's leaders to relocate black Americans to the colony.  The main British sponsor of his project was William Allen.  The details and challenges of Cuffe's collaboration with Sierra Leone appear in a set of documents that spans 1809 to 1816.  See, for example, "Paul Cuffe’s Initial Attempts to Collaborate with the Sierra Leone Colony" (1809), A Brief Account of the Settlement and Present Situation of the Colony of Sierra Leone by Paul Cuffe (1812) and "Correspondence between Paul Cuffe and William Allen" (1815-16).  The American Colonization Society (ACS), established in 1816, was the hub of the third group of emigration advocates.  The ACS drew inspiration from Cuffe's efforts and, as evidenced by the included documents, used Sierra Leone as a model for the free black colony the ACS established in Liberia in the early 1820s.  See, for example, the "Opening Article of the African Repository of the American Colonization Society (ACS)" (1825).

BRITISH OPPOSITION TO THE AMERICAN COLONIZATION SOCIETY (ACS) AND LIBERIA, 1830-1865

The second collection illustrates the aggressive campaign against the American Colonization Society (ACS) waged by British antislavery advocates during the 1830s and beyond.  Foremost among these critics were Charles Stuart, George Thompson and James Cropper.  The publications and speeches of these men supported the sustained attack against the ACS initiated by American black antislavery leaders during the late 1810s and joined by leaders of the American Anti-Slavery Society (AASS), like William Lloyd Garrison, during the 1830s.  Notable documents included are Stuart’s Remarks on the Colony of Liberia and the American Colonization Society (1832), Cropper’s The Extinction of the American Colonization Society (1834) and “Speech by George Thompson to the New-England Anti-Slavery Society” (1834).  These publications catalyzed a number of responses from ACS members and supporters.  Several are included in this library, such as Leonard Bacon’s Review of Pamphlets on Slavery and Colonization (1833) and ACS officer Ralph Gurley’s “Remarks on the Principles of the American Colonization Society” (1834), a direct response to Cropper’s The Extinction of the American Colonization Society.  Many British anti-ACS writings also appeared in Garrison's newspaper The Liberator.  One of the most important was a document that came to be known as the "Wilberforce Protest."  It was a letter from several British antislavery leaders, the most famous of whom was William Wilberforce, that characterized the ACS's belief that colonization could ultimately facilitate emancipation as "delusive."

BRITISH SUPPORT FOR THE AMERICAN COLONIZATION SOCIETY (ACS) AND LIBERIA, 1830-1865

The third collection mainly contains letters of encouragement from British individuals who continued to see merit in the American Colonization Society's (ACS) efforts after 1830.  The most active supporter was Thomas Hodgkin, who from the early 1830s to the late 1840s persistently defended the ACS in speeches, publications and correspondence.  Two notable publications of his included in this collection are An Inquiry into the Merits of the American Colonization Society (1833) and his speech "To the American Delegates to the Anti-Slavery Convention, Held in London, June 1840."  Interestingly, during the 1840s and 1850s, the ACS also received supportive communications from several British West Indian colonies, including Barbados, Antigua and Jamaica.  The documents from Barbados and Antigua indicate that a portion of the black population of these islands saw benefit in immigrating to Liberia, even though the British government had abolished slavery during the 1830s:  refer to the "Letter from the Barbados Colonization Society to his Excellency President Roberts, President of the Republic of Liberia" (1848) and the "Letter from Robert Wood" (1850).  The "Letter from Henry Clay to Thomas Hankey (British)" (1851) demonstrates Great Britain's desire to facilitate black emigration from America to Jamaica.

LIBERIA'S INFLUENCE ON BLACK EMIGRATION, 1825-1865

The fourth collection records Liberia's significant and varied influence on the American slavery debate during the territory's decades as a colony of the American Colonization Society (ACS) and, to a larger degree, after its declaration of independence in 1847.  During the earlier period, which commenced in 1822 with the arrival of the first immigrants, Liberia's condition and progress served as important points of reference in the multi-decade emigration debate between the ACS and more “radical” antislavery organizations like the American Anti-Slavery Society (AASS) and, after 1840, the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society (AFASS).   Each side published firsthand accounts and news reports that supported its respective stance.  On the pro-emigration side of the debate, the African Repository, the official journal of the ACS, served as the primary medium.  See, for example, the "Address of the Colonists to the Free People of Colour in the U.S." (1827), "Letters from Colonists [Eliza Hatter and Andrew Green]" (1832), "Latest from Liberia" (1836), "Letter from R. McDowall (American doctor who lived in Liberia for four years) to the Editor of the Christian Statesman" (1838), "Late Despatches from Liberia"  (1842) and "Liberia. Considerations for the Approaching Annual Meeting of the Society'" (1844).  On the anti-emigration side of the debate, The Liberator and The Colored American published many relevant articles.  See, for instance, "Letters from James Temple (Liberian emigrant)" (1834), "Letter from a Baptist Missionary in Liberia" (1836), "Letter from Louis Richmond (Liberian emigrant) to Lewis Tappan" (1838) and "Dismal Prospects of Liberia" (1842), all published in The Liberator, and  "Article in The Colored American:  'Resolutions of the People of Cleveland, on the Subject of African Colonization'" (1839).

After 1847, Liberian influence continued to affect the emigration debate but the frequency of negative American publications declined and the tone of black responses became more complex.  One important factor in this trend was that many within the antislavery community had come to see the ACS as less effective and influential.  Of considerable importance as well was the fact that national independence had, for some, cast Liberia in a more favorable light.(1)  Black antislavery leaders like Martin Delany and Henry Highland Garnet came to see Liberia as an important symbol of the black race’s equivalent capacity for self-government and self-improvement.  See, for example, Henry Highland Garnet's "Article in The North Star: 'Colonization and Emigration'" (1849) and Martin Delany's "Article in The North Star:  'Liberia'" (1849).  The latter document also provides insights into the reservations that antislavery advocates who had long opposed emigration had regarding this shift in attitude.  During this time period, Liberia's symbolic influence increased as pan-Africanist sentiment grew within the black communities of the United States and the broader Atlantic region.(2)  In addition to the documents from Garnet and Delany, see the "Letter from the Barbados Colonization Society to his Excellency President Roberts, President of the Republic of Liberia" (1848), the "Letter from Robert Wood (Antiguan)" (1850) and the "Article in the African Repository:  'African Colonization, by a Man of Color'" (1851) by Augustus Washington.  These trends, along with anti-black legislation like the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law, encouraged black support for African emigration during the 1850s and 1860s and, interestingly, brought some black antislavery advocates into an odd cooperative relationship with the ACS, an institution they had persistently vilified.  Martin Delany's visit to Liberia in 1861, recorded in "Discussion of Liberia in Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party" (1861), illustrates this phenomenon.  Despite his considerable dislike for the ACS and the ACS's ongoing connections to Liberia, he chose to visit Liberia in 1861 and published a favorable account of his experiences.

During the 1850s and 1860s, significant support for black emigration came from two individuals who had immigrated to Liberia in the early 1850s:  Alexander Crummell and Edward Blyden.  These prominent Liberians promoted black emigration through speeches and publications that utilized substantive amounts of pan-Africanist and Christian rhetoric.  See, for example, "Hope for Africa. A Discourse, Delivered in the Presbyterian Church, Seventh Avenue, New York" (1861) by Blyden and The Future of Africa (1862) by Crummell.  In spite of these events and trends, some within the antislavery movement continued to oppose black emigration and tried to counteract the promotional influence coming from Liberia.  "Frederick Douglass's Review of The Future of Africa (1862) supports this observation.

INTERPRETIVE NOTE:  When analyzing the documents in this collection, especially those which present favorable views of Liberian emigration, it is important to keep in mind that Liberia was subordinate to the ACS up through 1846 and retained connections to the institution after its independence in 1847.  It is likely that this relationship influenced the content of many of these documents, though to what extent is difficult to determine.

HAITI'S INFLUENCE ON BLACK EMIGRATION, 1815-1865

The fifth collection documents two periods of time during which the Haitian government actively promoted the emigration of free blacks from the United States to Haiti:  the late 1810s through the mid 1820s and the mid 1850s through the mid 1860s.  With respect to the earlier period, this collection includes two emigration invitations.  The first, published in 1818, was informal and appeared in an article in Niles' Weekly Register:  refer to “Excerpt of Letter from Secretary General of Haiti in Niles' Weekly Register: ‘People of Color.’”  The second, communicated in 1824, garnered more attention and was recorded in “Three Articles in Niles' Weekly Register on Emigration to Haiti” and Correspondence Relative to the Emigration to Hayti.  The latter invitation was promoted in the United States by ACS official Loring Dewey, although according to the second 1824 document, Dewey was operating outside of his ACS function in filling the role of Haitian liaison (see Dewey's note at the bottom of page 8).  Several thousand free blacks accepted Haiti's offer and emigrated between 1824 and 1826.  During the 1850s and 1860s, the Haitian government reemerged as an active proponent of American black emigration.  Two of this movement’s main promoters were American James Theodore Holly and James Redpath, a Scottish immigrant to the United States who became the Haitian government's official emigration representative.  As part of their efforts, Holly and Redpath respectively published A Vindication of the Capacity of the Negro Race for Self-Government, and Civilized Progress (1857) and A Guide to Hayti (1861), both included in this collection.  During the early 1860s, the Haitian government also advertised its emigration invitation in Douglass' Monthly:  refer to the “Recurring Advertisement from the Haitian Government Encouraging Emigration in Douglass' Monthly” (1862).  Once again a portion of the American free black population accepted Haiti's offer and emigrated.(3)  This event, as well as the emigration wave of the 1820s, contrasted with the black community's general opposition to emigration during the antebellum period. 

American reactions to these two emigration waves varied.  From the ACS's perspective, although Haitian emigration offered some validation of the idea that free blacks were interested in leaving the country,(4) it also represented a competitive movement that could diminish interest in its efforts.  This helps explain why the African Repository periodically disparaged Haiti or offered unfavorable comparisons of it relative to Liberia.  See, for example, "Intelligence. Report from Hayti" (1829), "Colonization in Canada and Hayti, Compared to Colonization in Liberia" (1832), "The Commonwealth of Liberia" (1840) and “Two articles in the African Repository that Compare Haiti and Liberia as Emigration Destinations” (1861).  Within the free black community, the movement that took place during the 1850s and 1860s seemed to have a more significant influence than that of the 1820s.  The fact that a substantial portion of the 1820s emigrants did not ultimately remain in Haiti (5) suggests that this event did little to affirm for the black community the idea of improving one’s station in life through emigration.  More importantly, however, the latter movement coincided with a shift in attitude within the black community toward emigration and with the active promotion of emigration by black antislavery leaders like Martin Delany, Henry Highland Garnet and James Theodore Holly.  Nevertheless, the second stage of Haitian emigration did provoke negative responses within the black community and from antislavery leaders like William Lloyd Garrison.  See, for example, "Article in Douglass' Monthly:  'Haytian Emigration Again"' by John Jones (1859), “Letter on Haytien Emigration” by William Lloyd Garrison (1861) and “Account of the 1863 Anti-Colonization Meeting in New York” (1863). 

The most interesting reactions came from Frederick Douglass who, despite his longstanding opposition to black emigration, articulated perspectives on Haitian emigration that had more nuances than might have been expected.  In a series of articles published in Douglass' Monthly during 1861, he acknowledged Haiti's importance as a symbol of black self-government and sympathized with American free blacks who wanted to flee the constraints of American racism.  Refer to "Emigration to Hayti," “Letter to the Editor of Douglass' Monthly regarding Haitian Emigration, with a Response,” "A Trip to Hayti" and "The Haytian Emigration Movement."  It is important to note that in the last of this series, he offered strong criticism of the tactics and rhetoric used to promote this movement.  Further evidence of his complex feelings can be found in his decisions to publish "Cotton and Hayti," an article that asserts that black emigration to Haiti could "aid in the overthrow of slavery," (it's not clear who wrote the editorial) and to print a strong endorsement of Haitian emigration written by Garnet and Holly entitled "The Colored People and Hayti" (1861).

COMPETING AGAINST AMERICAN COTTON:  BLACK EMIGRANT LABOR AS AN ANTISLAVERY WEAPON, 1850-1865

The sixth collection illustrates an interesting convergence of foreign influence, black emigration and the antislavery movement that occurred during the 15 years preceding the Civil War.  At this time, a small group of American antislavery advocates garnered foreign support for a plan that would combat slavery through the cultivation of foreign cotton in Africa, Haiti or another comparable foreign geography.  Their goals were to diminish the profitability of American cotton production and motivate Southern slaveholders to seek wealth in industries that did not rely on slave labor.  In doing this, they hoped to diminish the strength of Southern objections to abolition and to lessen the North's willingness to concede to these objections.  The success of this plan rested on finding a large piece of suitable land - the included documents favor territories in Africa or Haiti - and producing comparable cotton at a lower cost than that which prevailed in the United States.  Furthermore, it required a large emigrant labor force, thus making this idea attractive to black antislavery leaders like Martin Delany and Henry Highland Garnet who favored emigration but wanted to continue the fight against slavery after their departures.  Detailed explanations of this antislavery strategy and its foreign support appear in Benjamin Coates's Cotton Cultivation in Africa (1858), “Expedition to Africa, to Promote the Cultivation of Cotton and other Products of Slave Labour, by Emigrants from America” (1859), a British advertisement, "Discussion of British Support for Black Emigration in Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party" (1861) and "Article in Douglass' Monthly:  'Cotton and Hayti'" (1861).  Alexander Crummell's The Future of Africa (1862) demonstrates that support for this idea came from Liberia as well.

COLLABORATION BETWEEN AMERICAN BLACK EMIGRATIONISTS AND BRITISH PHILANTHROPISTS, 1855-1865

The seventh collection overlaps substantially with the sixth because, in addition to supporting foreign cotton production, the emigration movements led by Martin Delany and Henry Highland Garnet sought financial support from Great Britain.  In addition to the three duplicated documents - “Expedition to Africa, to Promote the Cultivation of Cotton and other Products of Slave Labour, by Emigrants from America” (1859), a British advertisement and "Discussion of British Support for Black Emigration in Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party" (1861) - it includes two documents from Garnet's trip to Great Britain in 1861:  the "Letter from Henry Highland Garnet in London to Henry Wilson" and “Speech by Henry Highland Garnet Delivered at the Music Hall, Birmingham England October 15, 1861."

NEGATIVE AMERICAN REACTIONS TO SPECIFIC FOREIGN PUBLICATIONS OR SPEECHES, 1830-1865

The eighth collection primarily contains editorials and pamphlets that defended the American Colonization Society (ACS) during the 1830s and early 1840s against the wave of British criticism.  Many of these documents were published in the African Repository.  The collection includes direct responses to Charles Stuart's "Prejudice Vincible" (1833) and James Cropper's The Extinction of the American Colonization Society (1834) and two rebuttals to the "Wilberforce Protest," one of which was written by a British citizen.  It also incorporates Leonard Bacon's Review of Pamphlets on Slavery and Colonization (1833), an influential document that addresses multiple anti-colonization tracts written by British antislavery figures.  In addition, the collection also includes two documents that oppose black emigration.  The first is an article from The Colored American entitled "Thomas Hodgkin and Colonization" (1839).  Thomas Hodgkin was one of the most active and perseverant British supporters of the ACS.  The second is Frederick Douglass's review of Alexander Crummell's The Future of Africa (1862).  In it, Douglass discourages his readers from accepting Crummell's invitation to immigrate to Liberia because, in Douglass's opinion, their manpower is needed to support activist efforts in the United States on behalf of the black population.

 

Document Collections

Great Britain's Sierra Leone Colony: Destination and Model for Early Emigration Movements, 1787-1830

Letter from Samuel Hopkins to Moses Brown - 1787

Letter from Granville Sharp (British) to John Jay - 1789

Correspondence between Samuel Hopkins and Granville Sharp (British) - 1789

Letter from Samuel Hopkins to John Erskine (British) - 1789

Addendum to a published sermon called “A Discourse on the Slave Trade” by Samuel Hopkins - 1793; mentions Sierra Leone as evidence of the practicability of black emigration

Letters from Zachary Macaulay (British) to Samuel Hopkins - 1795-6; responds to ongoing petitions from emigrationists in Rhode Island to come to Sierra Leone

Paul Cuffe’s Initial Attempts to Collaborate with the Sierra Leone Colony - 1809

“African Colonization”; Letter from Thomas Jefferson to J. L______ (Excerpt) - 1811 (1817 publication); mentions conversations he had with British antislavery advocates, through Rufus King, regarding Sierra Leone as a destination

A Brief Account of the Settlement and Present Situation of the Colony of Sierra Leone by Paul Cuffe - 1812

Letter from Paul Cuffe to William Allen (British) - 1813

Paul Cuffe’s Petition to the U.S. Congress - 1813

Article about Congressional Debate over Paul Cuffe’s Petition: “Friday, March 18” - 1814

Thoughts on the Colonization of Free Blacks by Robert Finley - 1815 (1834 publication); acknowledges the influence of Sierra Leone

Correspondence between Paul Cuffe and William Allen (British) - 1815-16; reveals challenges encountered by Paul Cuffe in collaborating with the African Institution and Sierra Leone

“Free People of Color. Report on Colonizing the Free People of Color of the United States, House of Representatives, Feb. 11” - 1817; articulates Congress’s approval to relocate American free blacks to Sierra Leone

Excerpts from Three Letters from Ebenezer Burgess and Samuel Mills in London to the American Colonization Society (ACS) - 1817-1818

Niles' Weekly Register Article that Provides Excerpts from a Meeting of the African Institution (British): “The Slave Trade” - 1822, compliments Great Britain's efforts in Sierra Leone

Opening Article of the African Repository of the American Colonization Society (ACS) – 1825; discusses Sierra Leone and Great Britain as major influences


British Opposition to the American Colonization Society (ACS), 1830-1865

Article in The Liberator: “A Voice from England! American Colonization Society…Liberia” by Charles Stuart (British) - 1831

Remarks on the Colony of Liberia and the American Colonization Society by Charles Stuart (British) – 1832

Letter from Joseph Phillips (British) to William Lloyd Garrison - 1832; criticizes the American Colonization Society (ACS) and Elliott Cresson, an ACS agent who was in Great Britain promoting the society

British Protest against the American Colonization Society (ACS) published in The Liberator: “American Colonization Society” - 1833; also known as the "Wilberforce Protest"

REACTION: Response to the "Wilberforce Protest" published in the African Repository: “The Protest” – 1833

Speech of Daniel O’Connell (Irish) at the Great Anti-Colonization Meeting held at Exeter Hall, London Published in The Liberator - 1833

Summary of William Lloyd Garrison’s Trip to Great Britain - 1833; Garrison traveled to oppose the American Colonization Society's (ACS) promotional efforts, led by Elliott Cresson

Editorial in The Liberator: "Prejudice Vincible" by Charles Stuart (British) - 1833

REACTION: Response to the Charles Stuart’s (British) "Prejudice Vincible" in the African Repository: “Defence of the Colonization Society” – 1833

REACTION: Review of Pamphlets on Slavery and Colonization by Leonard Bacon - 1833; responds to some of the published British criticism of the American Colonization Society (ACS)

REACTION: "Answer to the Wilberforce Protest" by Henry Duncan (British?) published in the African Repository - 1834

Speech by George Thompson (British) to the New-England Anti-Slavery Society - 1834; affirms British support for the fight against the American Colonization Society (ACS)

Article in The Liberator: "Review. The American Colonization Society Further Unravelled by Charles Stuart (British)" - 1834; includes a direct response to pro-colonization publications of Thomas Hodgkin (British)

Excerpt from The Extinction of the American Colonization Society by James Cropper (British) - 1834 (originally published in 1833 in Great Britain)

REACTION: “Remarks on the Principles of the American Colonization Society” by Reverend Ralph Gurley – 1834; includes a response to James Cropper’s (British) The Extinction of the American Colonization Society

Debate between George Thompson (British) and Ralph Gurley regarding the American Colonization Society (ACS) - 1835

Discussion on American slavery, between George Thompson [British]..., and Rev. Robert J. Breckinridge - 1836; Breckinridge traveled to Great Britain in answer to a challenge from George Thompson

REACTION: Letter from Robert Breckenridge to Reverend Wardlaw (British) - 1836; Breckenridge responds to a speech in which Wardlaw praises George Thompson's (British) performance in his debate with Breckinridge

Letter from Charles Stuart (British) to the Editor of the New York Observer - 1836; Stuart responds to the newspaper's publication of Robert Breckinridge’s Letter to Reverend Wardlaw (British)

Article in The Liberator: "Thomas Clarkson’s [British] Renunciation of the American Colonization Society" - 1840

Article in The Colored American: "The African Civilization Society and the American Colonization Society. from Sir Thomas Powell Buxton [British], Baronet, to the Rev. R.R. Gurley, Secretary of the American Colonization Society" - 1840

REACTION: Letter to the Hon. Henry Clay, President of the American Colonization Society, and, Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton (British) by Ralph Gurley - 1841

Letter from Robert Johnston (Irish) to an American Methodist - 1841; criticizes the American Methodist Church for continuing to support colonization and condemns the Maryland Colonization Society’s willingness to support forced emigration

Excerpt from The Two-Fold Slavery of the United States with a Plan for Self-Emancipation by Marshall Hall (British) – 1854; asserts that the efforts of the American Colonization Society (ACS) are impractical and misguided

 

BRITISH Support for the American Colonization Society (ACS) and Liberia, 1830-1865

“Important Debate in Congress on Colonization” in The Liberator – 1831; discusses a British petition to Congress regarding colonization

Article in the African Repository: "Letter of the Venerable Thomas Clarkson, on Colonization" by Thomas Clarkson (British) - 1832

An Inquiry into the Merits of the American Colonization Society by Thomas Hodgkin (British) - 1833

“A Vindication of the American Colonization Society and the Colony of Liberia (Excerpt)” by J. Bevans (British) – 1833

“To The American Delegates to the Anti-Slavery Convention, Held in London, June 1840” by Thomas Hodgkin (British) - 1840

REACTION: Article in The Colored American: "Thomas Hodgkin [British] and Colonization" - 1840

Mission to England, in Behalf of the American Colonization Society by Ralph Gurley - 1841; describes Gurley's largely unsuccessful attempt to regain British support for the American Colonization Society (ACS)

Letter from Great Britain to the African Repository - 1843; expresses support for the American Colonization Society's (ACS) efforts in Liberia and regret that Great Britain and the ACS have had a contentious relationship

Letter from British Naval Officer to the Governor of Liberia: "Commander Jones's Letter" – 1845

Letter from Martin Tupper (British) to Elliott Cresson - 1848

Letter from Thomas Hodgkin (British) to Elliott Cresson - 1848

Letter from the Barbados Colonization Society to his Excellency President Roberts, President of the Republic of Liberia - 1848

Article in the African Repository:  “Recognition of the Republic of Liberia by France and England" - 1849

Letter from Gerald Ralston in London to Elliott Cresson - 1849

Letter from Robert Wood (Antiguan) - 1850

Letter from Henry Clay to Thomas Hankey (British) - 1851; discusses Great Britain’s desire to facilitate the emigration to Jamaica

Article in the African Repository: "Letter from President Roberts" - 1852; includes two letters from President Roberts of Liberia describing his favorable reception in Great Britain and France


Liberia’s Influence on Black Emigration, 1825-1865

History of the American Colony in Liberia, from December 1821 to 1823 by Jehudi Ashmun (white Liberian official) - 1826; describes the challenges encountered by the first group of colonists and praises their strength of character

"Address of the Colonists to the Free People of Colour in the U.S." - 1827; strong endorsement of Liberia and emigration written by recent Liberian emigrants

Letter from Theophilus Blumhardt (Swiss) to the American Colonization Society (ACS) - 1828

Article in the African Repository: "Swiss Mission to Liberia" - 1829; provides information on the missionary efforts led by Theophilus Blumhardt (Swiss)

Article in the African Repository: "John Russwurm's [Liberian emigrant] Letter" - 1830; includes excerpts from his letter to "a young man of colour, now preparing himself for missionary efforts in Africa"

Article in The Liberator: “A Voice from England! American Colonization Society…Liberia” by Charles Stuart (British) - 1831

Remarks on the Colony of Liberia and the American Colonization Society by Charles Stuart (British) – 1832

Article in the African Repository: "Letters from Colonists [Eliza Hatter and Andrew Green]" - 1832; letters from ex-slaves to their former master that offer positive accounts of Liberia

Article in the African Repository:  "Colonization in Canada and Hayti, Compared to Colonization in Liberia" - 1832; argues in favor of Liberia and asserts that Haitian emigration has largely stopped and that many emigrants have returned

Letters from James Temple (Liberian emigrant) Published in The Liberator - 1834

Examination of Thomas C. Brown (Liberian emigrant) - 1834; a lengthy interview conducted by representatives of the American Anti-Slavery Society (AASS) and the American Colonization Society (ACS)

"To the Free Coloured People of the United States" by Beverly Wilson (Liberian emigrant) - 1835; Wilson wrote this positive account of Liberia after living there for a year

Yaradee; A Plea for Africa, being Familiar Conversations on the Subject of Slavery and Colonization by Frederick Freeman - 1836; an endorsement of Liberia and the efforts of the American Colonization Society (ACS), see chapters 21-30

Letter from a Baptist Missionary in Liberia Published in The Liberator - 1836; The Liberator has titled the letter "Starvation and Distress, and the Slave Trade in Liberia"

Article in the African Repository: "Latest from Liberia" - 1836

Articles on Liberia from the African Repository - 1838; contains two endorsements of Liberian progress from other newspapers and a description of native superstition meant to affirm the need for Christian proselytizing

Letter from R. McDowall (American doctor who lived in Liberia for four years) to the Editor of the Christian Statesman - 1838; strongly supports the progress that can be attained if Americans increase their support for the American Colonization Society (ACS)

Letter from Louis Richmond (Liberian emigrant) to Lewis Tappan Published in The Liberator - 1838; presents a very negative view of conditions in Liberia and of the behavior of ACS officials in Liberia

Article in The Colored American: "Resolutions of the People of Cleveland, on the Subject of African Colonization" - 1839; expresses disapproval of colonization and the Liberian colony

A Concise History of the Commencement, Progress and Present Condition of The American Colonies of Liberia by Samuel Wilkeson - 1839; a generally favorable account of Liberian progress intended to counterbalance the effect of anti-colonization publications

Letter from Mr. Hanson (native African educated in Great Britain and now living in Liberia as a missionary) to Elliott Cresson - 1839; encourages the American Colonization Society (ACS) to continue and expand their missionary efforts in Africa

Article in the African Repository: "The Commonwealth of Liberia [contd.]" - 1840; asserts that Liberian emigration offers better opportunities to American free blacks than the British West Indies

Article in the African Repository: "The Commonwealth of Liberia" - 1840; asserts that Liberian citizens have more freedom than those living in Haiti (Santo Domingo)

Article in the African Repository: "Late Despatches from Liberia" 1842; letters from the colonial government affirming progress

"Dismal Prospects of Liberia" (from Liberia Herald) - 1842 (originally published in 1841)

Article in the African Repository:  "Liberia. Considerations for the Approaching Annual Meeting of the Society" - 1844; a history of Liberia that focuses on the colony's commercial prospects and moral character

Letter from British Naval Officer to the Governor of Liberia: "Commander Jones's Letter" – 1845

Letter to the Editor of the National Era from a Southerner - 1847; defends Liberian emigration and expresses optimism regarding Liberian progress

Letter from the Barbados Colonization Society to his Excellency President Roberts, President of the Republic of Liberia - 1848

Article in the African Repository: "Citizens of Liberia in the United States” - 1848; includes comments on speeches gave by Liberians during their American visit

Calumny Refuted by Facts from Liberia. Presented to the Boston Anti-Slavery Bazaar, U.S. by Wilson Armistead - 1848

Liberian Independence: Documents and Correspondence in the African Repository - 1848; includes the Declaration of Independence and Constitution of Liberia

Article in The North Star: “Liberia and the Slave Trade” - 1848; asserts connections between Liberia and the American Colonization Society (ACS) and the slave trade

Article in The North Star: "Liberia" - 1849; presents a negative view of Liberia and its leaders while recognizing the Liberia's symbolic importance and future potential

Article in the African Repository:  “Recognition of the Republic of Liberia by France and England" - 1849

Article in The North Star: "Colonization and Emigration.____H.H. Garnet's Reply to S.S. Ward" - 1849; defends his changing feelings about colonization and emphasizes the importance of Liberia to the antislavery cause

Letter from Robert Wood (Antiguan) - 1850

Letter to Frederick Douglass from Benjamin Coates - 1851; emphasizes the importance of Liberia to the antislavery cause

Letter from George Seymour (Liberian emigrant) to Ralph Pinney of the New York Colonization Society - 1851; calls on free blacks in the United States to immigrate to Liberia and support the "redemption" of Africa

Article in the African Repository: "African Colonization, by a Man of Color" by Augustus Washington - 1851; an endorsement by an American free black of the American Colonization Society (ACS) and the cause of Liberia

Letter from Thomas Rutherford to William McLain, Secretary of the American Colonization Society (ACS) - 1851; cites Liberian progress as a reason to support black emigration

The New Republic by Massachusetts Sabbath School Society - 1851

Article in the African Repository: "Letter from President Roberts" - 1852; includes two letters from President Roberts of Liberia describing his favorable reception in Great Britain and France

The Condition, Elevation, Emigration, and Destiny of the Colored People of the United States (Excerpt) by Martin Delany - 1852; argues that Liberia is still effectively subordinate to the American Colonization Society (ACS)

Land of Hope. Reminiscences of Liberia and Cape Palmas, with Incidents of the Voyage by William Hoyt - 1852

Liberia; or Mr. Peyton's Experiments by Sarah Hale - 1853

Article in Frederick Douglass' Paper: "Speech of Mr. Miller, of N. Jersey, on the Expediency of Recognizing the Independence of Liberia, Delivered in the U.S. Senate, March 3 1853 (Excerpt)" - 1853

"Political Destiny of the Colored Race, on the American Continent. to the Colored Inhabitants of the United States" by Martin Delany, et al - 1854; asserts that American free blacks can gain equal rights only by emigrating

Proceedings of the National Emigration Convention of Colored People - 1854; full text of the emigration convention organized by Martin Delany and James Theodore Holly, among others

Article in Frederick Douglass' Paper:  "A Dark Picture. Liberia as It Is" by Augustus Washington (Liberian emigrant) - 1854; strong criticism of Liberia that contrasts his 1851 "African Colonization" article

The Looking Glass: Being a True Report of the Life, Travels, and Labors of the Rev. Daniel H. Peterson by Daniel Petersen - 1854

Four Months in Liberia; or, African Colonization Exposed by William Nesbit (Liberian emigrant) - 1855; he asserts that he was misled by the American Colonization Society (ACS) regarding Liberia

"Interesting Correspondence between the Governor of Indiana and the President of Liberia” in the African Repository - 1856

The Duty of a Rising Christian State to Contribute to the World's Well Being and Civilization by Alexander Crummell (Liberian emigrant) - 1857

Liberia as She Is; and the Present Duty of Her Citizens by Edward Blyden (Liberian emigrant from the Caribbean) - 1857

Four Years in Liberia, A Sketch of the Life of the Rev. Samuel Williams...with an Answer to Nesbit's Book by Samuel Williams (Liberian emigrant) - 1857

Cotton Cultivation in Africa by Benjamin Coates - 1858; supports the idea of building a cotton industry in Liberia

Article in the African Repository: "Letter from Augustus Washington [Liberian emigrant]" - 1859; promotes Liberian emigration and seeks financial support for Liberia - contrasts an 1854 criticism

Excerpt in the African Repository of a Speech by President Lincoln: “The President's Message. Liberian Independence” - 1861;

Two articles in the African Repository that Compare Haiti and Liberia as Emigration Destinations - 1861

“Hope for Africa. A Discourse, Delivered in the Presbyterian Church, Seventh Avenue, New York, July 21, 1861” by Edward Blyden (Liberian emigrant from the Caribbean) - 1861

Discussion of Liberia in Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party by Martin Delany (Excerpt) - 1861; describes support provided by Liberia to Delany's expedition and offers a revised, more positive view of Liberian progress

“Address of Rev. Alexander Crummell, at the Anniversary Meeting of the Massachusetts Colonization Society May 29, 1861” by Alexander Crummell (Liberian emigrant) - 1861

Letter from Martin Delany to Douglass' Monthly - 1862; asserts that black leaders in Liberia, not white collaborators, deserve credit for the United States's recent recognition of Liberia as a nation

Liberia's Offering: being Addresses, Sermons, etc. by Edward Blyden (Liberian emigrant from the Caribbean) - 1862

The Future of Africa: Being Addresses, Sermons, etc., etc., Delivered in the Republic of Liberia by Alexander Crummell (Liberian emigrant) - 1862

REACTION: Frederick Douglass’s Review of The Future of Africa in Douglass’ Monthly - 1862


Haiti’s Influence on Black Emigration, 1815-1865

Excerpt of Letter from Secretary General of Haiti in Niles' Weekly Register: “People of Color” – 1818; affirms Haiti's interest in American black emigration

Correspondence Relative to the Emigration to Hayti, of the Free People of Colour, in the United States - 1824; documents the correspondence of Loring Dewey, American Colonization Society (ACS) official, and the Haitian government

Three Articles in Niles' Weekly Register on Emigration to Haiti - 1824

Article in the African Repository: "Intelligence. Report from Hayti" - 1829; discourages emigration to Haiti based on negative accounts of the experiences of some emigrants from the United States

A Brief History of the Island of Hayti by Sarah Tuttle - 1831

Article in the African Repository:  "Colonization in Canada and Hayti, Compared to Colonization in Liberia" - 1832; argues in favor of Liberia and asserts that Haitian emigration has largely stopped and that many emigrants have returned

Article in the African Repository: "The Commonwealth of Liberia" - 1840; asserts that Liberian citizens have more freedom than those living in Haiti (Santo Domingo)

"Political Destiny of the Colored Race, on the American Continent. to the Colored Inhabitants of the United States" by Martin Delany, et al - 1854; asserts that American free blacks can gain equal rights only by emigrating

Proceedings of the National Emigration Convention of Colored People - 1854; full text of the emigration convention organized by Martin Delany and James Theodore Holly, among others

A Vindication of the Capacity of the Negro Race for Self-Government, and Civilized Progress by James Theodore Holly - 1857

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "Haytian Emigration Again" by John Jones - 1859; opposes black emigration to Haiti

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "Cotton and Hayti" - 1861; suggests that black emigration to Haiti could "aid in the overthrow of slavery", though the article does not explicitly advocate emigration

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "Emigration to Hayti" - 1861; opposes black emigration but sympathizes with the desire to emigrate - strongly recommends Haiti over Africa for those who choose to emigrate

“Letter on Haytien Emigration” by William Lloyd Garrison - 1861

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "A Trip to Hayti" by Frederick Douglass - 1861; without endorsing Haitian emigration, Douglass acknowledges Haiti's importance to American blacks

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "The Annexation of St. Domingo to Spain, Redpath's Views on the Subject" by James Redpath (British immigrant to the United States) - 1861; dispels rumors that Spain's recent actions in the Dominican

Letter to the Editor of Douglass' Monthly regarding Haitian Emigration, with a Response - 1861

Two articles in the African Repository that Compare Haiti and Liberia as Emigration Destinations - 1861

Excerpt in the African Repository of a Speech by President Lincoln: “The President's Message. Liberian Independence” - 1861;

A Guide to Hayti by James Redpath (British immigrant to the United States) - 1861

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "The Haytian Emigration Movement" - 1861; Douglass criticizes the Haitian emigration movement because he feels its agenda and rhetoric have come to resemble that of the American Colonization Society

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "The Colored People and Hayti" by Henry Highland Garnet, James Theodore Holly, et al – 1861; a strong endorsement of Haitian emigration with an invitation from the Haitian government included in the text

Letter from Martin Delany to Douglass' Monthly - 1862; asserts that black leaders in Liberia, not white collaborators, deserve credit for the United States's recent recognition of Liberia as a nation

Recurring Advertisement from the Haitian Government Encouraging Emigration in Douglass' Monthly - 1862

Account of the 1863 Anti-Colonization Meeting in New York - 1863; affirms black opposition to Haitian emigration in light of the bad experiences of emigrants who recently returned from Haiti


Competing against American Cotton: Black Emigrant Labor as an Antislavery Weapon, 1850-1865

Letter to Frederick Douglass from Benjamin Coates - 1851; emphasizes the importance of Liberia to the antislavery cause

Cotton Cultivation in Africa by Benjamin Coates - 1858; supports the idea of building a cotton industry in Liberia

“Expedition to Africa, to Promote the Cultivation of Cotton and other Products of Slave Labour, by Emigrants from America” - 1859; advertisement in Britain that seeks financial support for American black emigration

Discussion of British Support for Black Emigration in Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party by Martin Delany (Excerpt) - 1861

Article in Douglass' Monthly: "Cotton and Hayti" - 1861; suggests that black emigration to Haiti could "aid in the overthrow of slavery", though the article does not explicitly advocate emigration

The Future of Africa: Being Addresses, Sermons, etc., etc., Delivered in the Republic of Liberia by Alexander Crummell (Liberian emigrant) - 1862

 

Collaboration between American Black Emigrationists and British Philanthropists, 1855-1865

“Expedition to Africa, to Promote the Cultivation of Cotton and other Products of Slave Labour, by Emigrants from America” - 1859; advertisement in Britain that seeks financial support for American black emigration

“Speech by Henry Highland Garnet Delivered at the Music Hall, Birmingham England October 15, 1861” - 1861

Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party by Martin Delany - 1861

Discussion of British Support for Black Emigration in Official Report of the Niger Valley Exploring Party by Martin Delany (Excerpt) - 1861

Letter from Henry Highland Garnet in London to Henry Wilson - 1861


Negative American Reactions to Specific Foreign Publications and Actions, 1830-1865

REACTION: Response to the Charles Stuart’s (British) "Prejudice Vincible" in the African Repository: “Defence of the Colonization Society” – 1833

REACTION: Response to the "Wilberforce Protest" published in the African Repository: “The Protest” – 1833

REACTION: "Answer to the Wilberforce Protest" by Henry Duncan (British?) published in the African Repository - 1834

REACTION: “Remarks on the Principles of the American Colonization Society” by Reverend Ralph Gurley – 1834; includes a response to James Cropper’s (British) The Extinction of the American Colonization Society

REACTION: Letter from Robert Breckenridge to Reverend Wardlaw (British) - 1836; Breckenridge responds to a speech in which Wardlaw praises George Thompson's (British) performance in his debate with Breckinridge

REACTION: Article in The Colored American: "Thomas Hodgkin and Colonization" - 1840

REACTION: Letter to the Hon. Henry Clay, President of the American Colonization Society, and, Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton (British) by Ralph Gurley - 1841

REACTION: Frederick Douglass’s Review of The Future of Africa in Douglass’ Monthly - 1862

 

Footnotes

1 Benjamin Quarles, Black Abolitionists (London, New York: Oxford University Press, 1970), 215-17.

2 For a discussion of antebellum pan-Africanist sentiment, see Floyd John Miller, The Search for a Black Nationality: Black Emigration and Colonization, 1787-1863, Blacks in the New World (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1975), Epilogue.

3 Miller, The Search for a Black Nationality: Black Emigration and Colonization, 1787-1863, chapter 7.

4 See, for example, American Colonization Society., The Ninth Annual Report of the Society for Colonizing the Free People of Colour of the United States (Washington D.C.: Printed by Way and Gideon, 1826), 8; ———, "Mr. Tazewell's Report," in African Repository and Colonial Journal, Volume 4 (Washington D.C.: American Colonization Society, 1829), 336-37.

5 Miller, The Search for a Black Nationality: Black Emigration and Colonization, 1787-1863, 74-82.