Anti-Slavery Speeches: Context and Commentary

A Collaborative Project of Thayer Academy's Speechmaking in American History class
Winter 2014

What elements of style and content characterize the anti-slavery addresses of prominent 19th abolitionists? Using the "ten steps to a great speech" identified by William Safire in his original preface, titled "An Introductory Address," to Lend Me Your Ears: Great Speeches in History, we will provide commentary on a selection of anti-slavery speeches. Further, we will seek out contemporary observations and reactions (context) to these speeches and other links that provide insight into the speeches, the speakers, and the anti-slavery cause. Our selected speeches are:

Charles Sumner, "The Crime against Kansas"

William Lloyd Garrison, "No Compromise with the Evils of Slavery"

Angelina Grimké, Address at Pennsylvania Hall

Abraham Lincoln, "A House Divided"

Frederick Douglass, "All Men Are Created Equal"

Charles H. Langston, "Should Colored Men Be Subject to the Pains and Penalties of the Fugitive Slave Law?"