American Abolitionists and Antislavery Activists:
Conscience of the Nation

Updated February 14, 2017










l to r: Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison, Wendell Phillips




Anti-Slavery Political Leaders




Founding Fathers and Early Political Leaders Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

ADAMS, John, 1735-1826, statesman, founding father, second President of the United States, opponent of slavery, father of U.S. President John Quincy Adams.

 

BASSETT, Richard, 1745-1815, founding father, political leader, lawyer, jurist, Revolutionary War soldier.  Delegate to the Continental Convention of 1787.  Governor of Delaware and senior U.S. Senator from Delaware during First Congress.  Strong advocate of anti-slavery cause.  Freed his slaves.

 

BOUDINOT, Elias, 1740-1821, New Jersey, philanthropist, lawyer, Revolutionary statesman, U.S. Congressman, opponent of slavery.  Trustee of Princeton.  Former president of the Congress of Confederation.  Secretary of Foreign Affairs.  Supported right to petition Congress against slavery.

 

BURR, Aaron, 1756-1836, Newark, New Jersey, soldier, statesman, antislavery activist.  Vice President of the United States under Thomas Jefferson. 

 

CARROLL, Charles, 1737-1832, Carrollton, Maryland, founding father, signer of the Declaration of Independence.  President of the American Colonization Society (ACS).  Head of the Baltimore auxiliary of the ACS.

 

CHASE, Samuel, 1741-1811, Maryland, founding father, jurist.

 

CUSHING, William, 1732-1810, lawyer, jurist, opponent of slavery, member of the Constitutional Convention of Massachusetts, Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Court, First Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, appointed by George Washington, Acting Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, 1794.  Wrote in the case Commonwealth v. Jennings, 1783, which abolished slavery in the state of Massachusetts.  Cushing wrote:  “As to the doctrine of slavery and the right of Christians to hold Africans in perpetual servitude, and sell and treat them as we do our horses and cattle, that… has been heretofore countenanced by the Province Laws… a different idea has taken place with the people of America more favorable to the natural rights of mankind, and to that natural, innate desire of Liberty, with which Heaven… has inspired all the human race.  And upon this ground our Constitution of Government, by which the people of this Commonwealth have solemnly bound themselves, sets out with declaring that all men are born free and equal—and that every subject is entitled to liberty, and to have it guarded by the laws, as well as life and property—in short is totally repugnant to the idea of being born slaves… the idea of slavery is inconsistent with our own conduct and constitution; and there can be no such thing as perpetual servitude of a rational creature, unless his liberty is forfeited by some criminal conduct or given up by personal consent or contract.”

 

DICKINSON, John, 1732-1808, founding father, statesman, political pamphleteer, Congressman from Delaware, opponent of slavery and slave trade.

 

ELLERY, William, 1727-1820, founding father, signer of the Declarartion of Independence.  Supported Rufus King in trying to abolishi slavery in the country. 

 

ELLSWORTH, Oliver, 1745-1807, founding father, jurist, lawyer, political leader, opponent of slavery.  Was a drafter of the United States Constitution.  United States Senator from Connecticut, 1789-1796.  Third Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, 1796-1800.  Ellsworth argued before the Continental Convention against the foreign slave trade.  In order to gain Southern support for the passage of the Constitution, he endorsed the Three-Fifths Compromise on the Enumeration of Slaves.

 

FEW, William, 1748-1828, soldier, statesman, political leader, founding father.  Representative of Georgia at the Constitutional Convention.  U.S. Senator.  Soldier in the Revolutionary War.

 

FRANKLIN, Benjamin, 1706-1790, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, statesman, inventor, diplomat, lawyer, publisher, author, philosopher, opponent of slavery. President of the Pennsylvania Abolition Society, 1787-1790.  Franklin wrote: “The unhappy man, who has long been treated as a brute animal, too frequently sinks beneath the common standard of the human species.  The galling chains that bind his body do also fetter his intellectual faculties, and impair the social affectations of his heart.  Accustomed to move like a mere machine, by the will of a master, reflection is suspended; he has not the power of choice; and reason and conscience have but little influence over his conduct, because he is chiefly governed by the passion of fear.  He is poor and friendless; perhaps worn out by extreme labor, age, and disease.  Attention to emancipated blacks, it is therefore to be hoped, will become a branch of our national policy; but, as far as we contribute to promote this emancipation, so far that attention is evidently a serious duty incumbent on us, and which we mean to discharge to the best of our judgment and abilities.  To instruct, to advise, to qualify those who have been restored to freedom, for the exercise and enjoyment of civil liberty; to promote in them habits of industry; to furnish them with employments suited to their age, sex, talents, and other circumstances; and to procure their children an education calculated for their future situation in life,--these are the great outlines of our annexed plan, which we have adopted, and which we conceive will essentially promote the public good, and the happiness of these our hitherto too much neglected fellow creatures.”

 

GERRY, Elbridge, 1744-1814, Massachusetts, statesman, founding father.  Member of the Constitutional Convention.  U.S. Congressman.  Supported and encouraged rights of citizens to petition Congress for redress of grievances against slavery.

 

HAMILTON, Alexander, 1757-1804, founding father, statesman, first Secretary of the Treasury, anti-slavery activist, second President of the New York Society for Promoting the Manumission of Slaves, founded in 1785.

 

HENRY, Patrick, 1736-1799, Virginia, statesman, founding father, opponent of slavery.  Henry wrote in 1773: “I am drawn along by the general inconvenience of living without them [slaves].  I will not, I can not justify it.  However culpable my conduct, I will so far pay my devoir to virtue, as to own the excellence and rectitude of her precepts, and to lament my own want of conformity to them.”

 

HOPKINS, Stephen, 1707-1785, Rhode Island, founding father, political leader, signer of the Declaration of Independence.  Hopkins was a slaveholder.  He manumitted several of his slaves, but not all, during his lifetime.  In 1774, as a Rhode Island Assemblyman, he introduced a bill prohibiting importing slaves into the colony, which was passed.  This was one of the earliest anti-slavery laws enacted in the United States.  Hopkins was a practicing Quaker.

 

JAY, John, 1745-1829, New York, lawyer, statesman, founding father, diplomat, anti-slavery leader.  President of the Continental Congress.  First Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.  Governor of the State of New York, 1795-1801.  New York State’s leading opponent of slavery.  Founder and president of the New York Society for Promoting the Manumission of Slaves and Protecting such of them as Have Been Liberated, founded 1785.  Attempted to end slavery in 1777 and 1785.  In 1799, he signed into law the Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery, which eventually freed all the slaves in New York.  This act was arguably the most comprehensive and largest emancipation in North America before the Civil War. 

 

JEFFERSON, Thomas, 1743-1826, Virginia, statesman, writer, inventor, member of the Continental Congress, primary author of the Declaration of Independence, President of the United States, 1801-1809, Vice President of the United States, 1797-1801.  Although Thomas Jefferson owned slaves himself and never freed his slaves during his lifetime, he tried to prevent the Constitution from legally authorizing slavery in the United States; he always opposed slavery in theory, if not in practice.  Jefferson wrote:  “The abolition of domestic slavery is the great object of desire in those colonies where it was, unhappily, introduced in their infant state.  But previous to the enfranchisement of the slaves we have, it is necessary to exclude all further importations from Africa.” He also wrote:  “The whole commerce between master and slave is a perpetual exercise of the most boisterous passions, the most unremitting despotism on the one part, and degrading submissions on the other.  Our children see this, and learn to imitate it; for man is an imitative animal… The parent storms, the child looks on, catches the lineaments of wrath, puts on the same airs in the circle of smaller slaves, gives a loose to the worst of passions, and thus nursed, educated, and daily exercised in tyranny, cannot but be stamped by it with odious peculiarities.”  Jefferson’s ambivalence with regard to slavery is summed up by words he wrote to a friend in 1802:  “We have the wolf by the ear, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let him go.  Justice is on one scale, and slef-preservation is on the other.”  (See Special Category)   

 

KING, Rufus, 1775-1827, Massachusetts, statesman, founding father, lawyer, diplomat, soldier, early opponent of slavery.  Member of the Constitutional Convention, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  U.S. Congressional Representative and U.S. Senator.  Wrote clause in Northwest Ordinance excluding slavery from Northwest Territories.  It stated, in part, “that there should be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in any of the states,” and that this should “remain a fundamental principle of the Constitution…”  As a Senator in 1819, he opposed the admission of Missouri as a slave state.  King entered proposals in the Senate to abolish slavery.  His son was anti-slavery activist John Alsop King. 

 

LAURENS, Henry, 1724-1792, statesman, South Carolina, opponent of slavery.

 

MADISON, James, 1751-1836, Virginia, founding father.  Fourth President of the United States.  American Colonization Society, President, 1833-37.

 

MARTIN, Luther, c. 1748-1826, Maryland, founding father, lawyer, opponent of slavery.  First Attorney General in the State of Maryland, Member of the Continental Congress, and Member of the Federal Convention.  Said of slavery that it is “inconsistent with the principles of the Revolution and dishonorable to the American character.”

 

MASON, George, 1725-1792, statesman.  Virginia Constitutionalist.  Slaveholder who himself opposed slavery on moral grounds.  Authored the Virginia Declaration of Rights.  Opposed the U.S. Constitution because of the stand on the issue of slavery.  Mason wrote: “Slavery discourages arts and manufactures. The poor despise labor when performed by slaves.  They [slaves] prevent the immigration of whites, who really enrich and strengthen a country.  They produce a pernicious effect on manners.  Every master of slaves is born a petty tyrant.  They bring the judgment of heaven on a country.”  Mason did not sign the U.S. Constitution and stated during the Virginia Ratifying Convention debate: “Under the royal government, this evil was looked upon as a great oppression, and was one of the great causes of our separation from Great Britain.  Its exclusion has been a principal object of this state and most of the states in the Union.  The augmentation of slaves weakens the states; and such a trade is diabolical in itself and disgraceful to mankind… As much as I value a union of all the states, I would not admit the Southern States into the Union unless they agree to the discontinuance of this disgraceful trade, because it would bring weakness, and not strength, to the Union.”

 

MORRIS, Gouverneur, 1752-1816, Pennsylvania, statesman, diplomat, founding father, opponent of slavery.  He called slavery a “nefarious institution… the curse of Heaven on the state where it prevailed…a defiance of the most sacred laws of humanity.” Working with John Jay, Morris tried to abolish slavery in the State of New York. 

 

OTIS, James, 1725-1783, statesman, founding father, Otis wrote in The Rights of the British Colonist Asserted and Proved: “The Colonists are by the law of nature free born, as indeed all men are, white or black”

 

PAYNE, Thomas

 

RANDOLPH, Edmund Jennings, 1753-1813, founding father, lawyer.  Governor of Virginia.  Second United States Secretary of State.  First United States Attorney General.  As a delegate from Virginia to the Continental Convention, Randolph wrote and introduced the Virginia Plan, which strongly opposed the importation of slaves. 

 

RUSH, Dr. Benjamin, 1746-1813, Pennsylvania, founding father of the United States, physician, author, humanitarian, educator, opponent of slavery.  Wrote “An Address to the Inhabitants of the British Settlements in America Upon Slave Keeping,” an anti-slavery pamphlet published in 1773.  Secretary and member of the Pennsylvania Abolition Society, 1787.  Rush wrote: “Slavery is so foreign to the human mind, that the moral faculties, as well as those of the understanding are debased, and rendered torpid by it.  All of the vices which are charged upon the negroes in the southern colonies and West Indies… are the genuine offspring of slavery, and serve as an argument to prove they [African Americans] were not intended by Providence for it.”

 

SHERMAN, Roger, 1721-1793, founding father, opponent of slavery. Signer of the Articles of Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution.  Sherman opposed a tax on slaves because it would imply that they were property and not human beings. 

 

TUCKER, St. George, 1752-1827, Williamsburg, Virginia, jurist, professor of law at William and Mary University, opponent of slavery, slaveholder.  Author of five-volume edition, Blackstone’s Commentaries (1803), and Dissertation on Slavery, with a Proposition for its Gradual Abolition in Virginia (1796).  Advocate for gradual abolition of slavery.

 

SHERMAN, Roger, 1721-1793, founding father, opponent of slavery. Signer of the Articles of Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution.  Sherman opposed a tax on slaves because it would imply that they were property and not human beings. 

 

WILSON, James, 1742-1798, founding father, signer of the Declaration of Independence, opponent of slavery, member of the Pennsylvania Constitutional Ratifying Convention.

 



United States Presidents Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

ADAMS, John, 1735-1826, statesman, founding father, second President of the United States, opponent of slavery, father of U.S. President John Quincy Adams.

 

ADAMS, John Quincy, 1767-1848, Massachusetts, sixth U.S. President (1825-1829), U.S. Congressman (1831-1848), U.S. Secretary of State, lawyer, anti-slavery leader, activist, son of second U.S. President John Adams.  Opposed the Missouri Compromise of 1819, which allowed the expansion of slavery in southern states.  Fought against the “Gag Rule” in Congress, which prevented discussion of the issue of slavery in the U.S. House of Representatives.  The Gag Rule was revoked in 1844.

 

JEFFERSON, Thomas, 1743-1826, Virginia, statesman, writer, inventor, member of the Continental Congress, primary author of the Declaration of Independence, President of the United States, 1801-1809, Vice President of the United States, 1797-1801.  Although Thomas Jefferson owned slaves himself and never freed his slaves during his lifetime, he tried to prevent the Constitution from legally authorizing slavery in the United States; he always opposed slavery in theory, if not in practice.  Jefferson wrote:  “The abolition of domestic slavery is the great object of desire in those colonies where it was, unhappily, introduced in their infant state.  But previous to the enfranchisement of the slaves we have, it is necessary to exclude all further importations from Africa.” He also wrote:  “The whole commerce between master and slave is a perpetual exercise of the most boisterous passions, the most unremitting despotism on the one part, and degrading submissions on the other.  Our children see this, and learn to imitate it; for man is an imitative animal… The parent storms, the child looks on, catches the lineaments of wrath, puts on the same airs in the circle of smaller slaves, gives a loose to the worst of passions, and thus nursed, educated, and daily exercised in tyranny, cannot but be stamped by it with odious peculiarities.”  Jefferson’s ambivalence with regard to slavery is summed up by words he wrote to a friend in 1802:  “We have the wolf by the ear, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let him go.  Justice is on one scale, and slef-preservation is on the other.”  (See Special Category)  

 

LINCOLN, Abraham, 1809-1865, 16th President of the United States (1861-1865), opponent of slavery.  Issued Emancipation Proclamation January 1, 1863, freeing slaves in southern states.  By the end of the Civil War, more than four million slaves were liberated from bondage. 

 



United States Vice Presidents Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

ADAMS, John, 1735-1826, statesman, founding father, second President of the United States, opponent of slavery, father of John Quincy Adams.

 

BURR, Aaron, 1756-1836, Newark, New Jersey, soldier, statesman, antislavery activist.  Vice President of the United States under Thomas Jefferson.

 

COLFAX, Schuyler, 1823-1885, Vice President of the United States, statesman, newspaper editor.  Member of Congress, 1854-1869.  Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  Secretary of State.  Opposed slavery as a Republican Member of Congress. Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

HAMLIN, Hannibal, 1809-1891. Vice President of the United States, 1861-1865, under President Abraham Lincoln.  Congressman from Maine, 1843-1847.  U.S. Senator from Maine, 1848-1857, 1857-1861, and 1869-1881.  Governor of Maine, January-February 1857.  In February 1857, he resigned as Governor of Maine to return to the U.S. Senate.  In 1861, he was elected U.S. Vice President.  Was an adamant opponent of the extension of slavery into the new territories.  Supported the Wilmot Proviso and spoke against the compromise laws of 1850.  Strongly opposed to the Kansas-Nebraska Act.  Early founding member of the Republican Party.  Supported Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation and creation of Black regiments for the Union Army. (Harry Draper Hunt (1969). Hannibal Hamlin of Maine, Lincoln's first Vice-President. Syracuse University Press. ISBN 978-0-8156-2142-3. OCLC 24587.   Charles Eugene Hamlin (1899). The Life and Times of Hannibal Hamlin. Syracuse University Press. OCLC 1559174)

 

JEFFERSON, Thomas, 1743-1826, Virginia, statesman, writer, inventor, member of the Continental Congress, primary author of the Declaration of Independence, President of the United States, 1801-1809, Vice President of the United States, 1797-1801.  Although Thomas Jefferson owned slaves himself and never freed his slaves during his lifetime, he tried to prevent the Constitution from legally authorizing slavery in the United States; he always opposed slavery in theory, if not in practice.  Jefferson wrote:  “The abolition of domestic slavery is the great object of desire in those colonies where it was, unhappily, introduced in their infant state.  But previous to the enfranchisement of the slaves we have, it is necessary to exclude all further importations from Africa.” He also wrote:  “The whole commerce between master and slave is a perpetual exercise of the most boisterous passions, the most unremitting despotism on the one part, and degrading submissions on the other.  Our children see this, and learn to imitate it; for man is an imitative animal… The parent storms, the child looks on, catches the lineaments of wrath, puts on the same airs in the circle of smaller slaves, gives a loose to the worst of passions, and thus nursed, educated, and daily exercised in tyranny, cannot but be stamped by it with odious peculiarities.”  Jefferson’s ambivalence with regard to slavery is summed up by words he wrote to a friend in 1802:  “We have the wolf by the ear, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let him go.  Justice is on one scale, and slef-preservation is on the other.”  (See Special Category)

 



United States Secretaries of State Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

ADAMS, John Quincy, 1767-1848, Massachusetts, sixth U.S. President (1825-1829), U.S. Congressman (1831-1848), U.S. Secretary of State, lawyer, anti-slavery leader, activist, abolitionist, son of second U.S. President John Adams.  Opposed the Missouri Compromise of 1819, which allowed the expansion of slavery in southern states.  Fought against the “Gag Rule” in Congress, which prevented discussion of the issue of slavery in the U.S. House of Representatives.  The Gag Rule was revoked in 1844.  

 

COLFAX, Schuyler, 1823-1885, Vice President of the United States, statesman, newspaper editor.  Member of Congress, 1854-1869.  Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  Secretary of State.  Opposed slavery as a Republican Member of Congress. Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 



United States Senators Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

BALDWIN, Roger Sherman, 1793-1863, New Haven, Connecticut, lawyer, jurist, statesman, U.S. Senator.  Lead counsel, with John Quincy Adams, for the slaves of the Amistad ship.

 

BRADLEY, Stephan Row, 1754-1830, jurist, Member of Congress, U.S. Senator, New Jersey, opposed slavery in U.S. Congress.

 

BRAINERD, Lawrence, 1794-1870, capitalist, statesman, U.S. Senator, member of the Free Soil Party.

 

BROWN, Benjamin Gratz, 1826-1885, lawyer, soldier.  Anti-slavery activist in Missouri legislature from 1852-1859.  Opposed pro-slavery party.  Commanded a regiment and later a brigade of Missouri State Militia.  U.S. Senator 1863-1867, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CHANDLER, Zachariah, 1813-1879, statesman, U.S. Senator 1857-.  Active in Underground Railroad in Detroit area.  Helped organize the Republican Party in 1854.  Introduced Confiscation Bill in Senate, July 1861.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DAGGETT, David, 1764-1851, New Haven, Connecticut, U.S. Senator, jurist, Mayor of New Haven.  Supporter of the American Colonization Society. 

 

DAVENPORT, Franklin, 1755-1832, abolitionist, soldier, New Jersey legislature, U.S. Senator 1789-1799, U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey 1799-1801, member and delegate of the New Jersey Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery, founded 1793, nephew of Benjamin Franklin. 

 

DAVIS, John, 1787-1854, Northborough, Massachusetts, lawyer, statesman, four-term U.S. Congressman, Governor of Massachusetts, U.S. Senator, 1835-1841.  Opposed the war with Mexico and introduction of slavery in U.S. territories.  Supported the Wilmot Proviso and opposed the Compromise Acts of 1850.    

 

DAYTON, William Lewis, 1807-1864, lawyer, statesman, diplomat, U.S. Senator.  Member of the Free Soil Whig Party.  Opposed slavery and its expansion into the new territories.  Opposed the Fugitive Slave bill of 1850.  Supported the admission of California as a free state and the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia.  First vice presidential nominee of Republican Party in 1856, on the ticket with John C. Frémont.  Lost the election to James Buchanan. 

 

DEXTER, Samuel, 1761-1816, lawyer, jurist.  Member of U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts.  U.S. House of Representatives, 1793-1795.  U.S. Senator, December 1799-June 1800.  Opposed slavery as member of U.S. House of Representatives.  Secretary of War and Treasury. 

 

DIXON, James, 1814-1873, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Congressman and U.S. Senator representing Connecticut.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

EWING, Thomas, 1789-1871, West Liberty, Ohio, statesman, attorney, Whig U.S. Senator, 1831-1837, from Oho, opposed slavery as a Senator.  Secretary of the Treasury, 1841-1847.  Secretary of the Interior.  Opposed Fugitive Slave Law, Henry Clay’s Compromise Bill, and called for the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia.  Adopted Civil War General William T. Sherman as a boy.   

 

FESSENDEN, William Pitt, 1806-1869, lawyer, statesman, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury.  Elected to Congress in 1840 as a member of the Whig Party opposing slavery.  Moved to repeal rule that excluded anti-slavery petitions before Congress.  Strong leader in Congress opposing slavery.  Elected to the Senate in 1854.  He opposed the Kansas-Nebraska bill as well as the Dred Scott Supreme Court Case.  Co-founder of the Republican Party.  Prominent leader of the anti-slavery faction of the Republican Party in the U.S. Senate.  As U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FEW, William, 1748-1828, soldier, statesman, political leader, founding father, abolitionist.  Representative of Georgia at the Constitutional Convention.  U.S. Senator.  Soldier in the Revolutionary War.    

 

FINDLAY, William, 1741-1821, member of U.S. Congress, elected 1791-1799 and 1803-1817, Pennsylvania, opposed slavery. 

 

FOOT, Solomon, 1802-1866, lawyer, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator.  Opposed war with Mexico.  Opposed slavery and its extension into new territories.  Founding member of the Republican Party.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FOSTER, Lafayette Sabine, 1806-1880, statesman, Connecticut State Representative, Mayor of Norwich, Connecticut, U.S. Senator 1854-?, Republican Party, opposed to slavery.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FRELINGHUYSEN, Theodore, 1787-1862, Franklin, Somerset Co., Newark, New Jersey, attorney, jurist, statesman, opposed slavery.  U.S. Senator, 1829-1836.  Mayor of Newark, New Jersey.  Chancellor of the University of New York.  Whig Vice Presidential candidate.  American Colonization Society, Vice-President, 1833-1841.  Member of the board of the African Education Society.

 

FRÉMONT, John Charles, 1813-1890, California, Army officer, explorer.  In 1856, was first candidate for President from the anti-slavery Republican Party.  Lost to James Buchanan.  Early in his career, he was opposed to slavery and its expansion into new territories and states.  Third military governor of California, 1847. First U.S. Senator from the State of California, 1850-1851.  He was elected as a Free Soil Democrat, and was defeated for reelection principally because of his adamant opposition to slavery.  Frémont supported a free Kansas and was against the provisions of the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law.  On August 30, 1861, Frémont issued an unauthorized proclamation to free slaves owned by secessionists in his Department in Missouri.  Lincoln revoked the proclamation and relieved Frémont of command.  In March 1862, Frémont was given commands in Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky.

 

GILLETT, Francis, 1807-1879, Connecticut, U.S. Senator, co-founder of the Republican Party, anti-slavery advocate.    

 

GOLDSBOROUGH, Robert Henry, 1780-1836, New Easton, Maryland.  Charter founding member of the American Colonization Society in Washington, DC, in 1816.  Democratic U.S. Senator from Maine, 1813-1819, 1835-1836.

 

GRIMES, James Wilson, 1816-1872, statesman, lawyer.  U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Governor of Iowa, 1854-1858.  Supported by Whigs and Free Soil Democrats.  Elected as Republican Senator in 1859.  Re-elected 1865.

 

HALE, John Parker, 1806-1873, New Hampshire, statesman, diplomat, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator.  Member of the anti-slavery Liberty Party.  President of the Free Soil Party, 1852.  Elected to Congress in 1842, he opposed the 21st Rule suppressing anti-slavery petition to Congress.  Refused to support the annexation of Texas in 1845.  Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1846, he was the first distinctively anti-slavery Senator.  Adamantly opposed slavery for his 16 years in office.  In 1851, served as Counsel in the trial of rescued slave Shadrach.  In 1852, he was nominated for President of the United States, representing the Free Soil Party.  As U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HARPER, Robert Goodloe, 1765-1825, Fredericksburg, Virginia, Baltimore, U.S. Senator, lawyer.  Founding officer, Baltimore auxiliary, American Colonization Society (ACS), 1817.  Active advocate and supporter of the colonization movement.  Invented the name “Liberia” for ACS colony.  Father of ACS activist Charles C. Harper.

 

HOWARD, Jacob Merritt, 1805-1871, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Senator from Michigan.  U.S. Congressman 1841-1843.  Founding member of Republican Party in 1854.  Elected in 1862.  Served until March 1871.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HOWE, Timothy Otis, 1816-1883, lawyer, jurist.  Republican U.S. Senator from Wisconsin.  Elected 1861, served until 1879.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery,

 

JOHNSON, Reverdy, 1796-1876, lawyer, diplomat, statesman, U.S. Senator, opposed annexing territories acquired in the war with Mexico.  Strongly opposed the extension of slavery into the new territories.  Ardent supporter of the Union.  Believed that African Americans should be recruited into the Union Army and as a result should gain their emancipation.

 

KING, Preston, 1806-1865, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator, politician.  Son of founding father Rufus King.  Opponent of the extension of slavery into the new territories acquired from Mexico after 1846.  Supporter of the Wilmot Proviso in Congress.  Co-founder of Free Soil Party.  Later organized Republican Party and supported William H. Seward and Thurlow Weed. 

 

KING, Rufus, 1775-1827, Massachusetts, statesman, lawyer, diplomat, soldier, early opponent of slavery.  Member of the Constitutional Convention, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  U.S. Congressional Representative and U.S. Senator.  Wrote clause in Northwest Ordinance excluding slavery from Northwest Territories.  It stated, in part, “that there should be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in any of the states,” and that this should “remain a fundamental principle of the Constitution…”  As a Senator in 1819, he opposed the admission of Missouri as a slave state.  King entered proposals in the Senate to abolish slavery.  His son was anti-slavery activist John Alsop King. 

 

LANE, James Henry, 1814-1866, lawyer, soldier, abolitionist.  U.S. Senator from Kansas and Congressman from Indiana, 1853-1855.  Elected Senator in 1861 and in 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

LOWRIE, Walter, 1784-1868, New York, New York, educator, merchant, religious leader, statesman.  U.S. Senator, western Pennsylvania, 1819-1825, Secretary of the Senate, 1825-1836.  Member of the Executive Committee, American Colonization Society (ACS), Manager, 1834-1837, Vice President, 1836-1841.

 

MORGAN, Edwin Dennison, 1811-1883, merchant, soldier, statesman.  Member of the Whig Party, Anti-Slavery Faction.  Republican U.S. Senator from New York.  Chairman of the Republican National Committee, 1856-1864.  Governor of New York, 1858-1862.  Commissioned Major General of Volunteers, he raised 223,000 troops for the Union Army.  U.S. Senator, 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MORRIL, David Lawrence, 1772-1849, theologian, physician, statesman.  U.S. Congressman and U.S. Senator from New Hampshire.  U.S. Senator from December 1817-March 1823.   Opposed extending slavery into the new territories stated in debate in Congress in 1819: “The states now existing which have thought proper to admit slavery, may retain their slaves as long as they please; but, after the commencement of 1808, Congress may by law prohibit the importation of any more, and restrain those who are then in servitude to the territory or States where they may be found.” 

 

MORRILL, Lot Myrick, 1813-1883, lawyer, temperance advocate, opposed slavery, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, 1876, two-term Republican Governor of Maine, U.S. Senator, 1861-1869.  Joined the Republican Party due to his position against slavery and its expansion into the new territories.  Supported the bill in Congress that emancipated slaves in Washington, DC.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. After the war, he supported higher education for African Americans.  In 1866, he supported voting rights for African Americans in Washington, DC. 

 

MORRIS, Thomas, 1776-1844, Cincinnati, Ohio, Virginia, first abolitionist Senator, 1833, vice president of the Liberty Party, abolitionist, Ohio lawmaker 1806-1830, Chief Justice of the State of Ohio 1830-1833, U.S. Senator 1833-183?.  Executive Committee, American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society (A&FASS), 1840-1844.  Vice President of the American Colonization Society (ACS), 1839-1841.  Fought for right to petition Congress against slavery.

 

PICKNEY, William

 

POMEROY, Samuel Clarke. Republican U.S. Senator from Kansas.  Active in Kansas “Free State” convention of 1859.  U.S. Senator 1861-1873.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

PORTER, Alexander, 1796-1844, St. Martinsville, Louisiana, jurist, U.S. Whig Senator, 1834-1837, 1843-1844. American Colonization Society (ACS), Vice-President, 1834-1841.  President, Louisiana auxiliary of the ACS. 

 

SEWARD, William Henry, 1801-1872, statesman, U.S. Secretary of State under Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson, U.S. Senator from New York, abolitionist, member Anti-Slavery Republican Party.

 

SOUTHARD, Samuel Lewis, 1787-1842, Trenton, New Jersey, attorney.  Whig U.S. Senator, Secretary of the Navy, 1823-1829.  American Colonization Society, Vice-President, 1834-1841.

 

SPEED, James, 1812-1887, Kentucky, lawyer, soldier, statesman, U.S. Attorney General.  Ardent opponent of slavery.  Early friend of Abraham Lincoln.  Emancipation candidate for Kentucky State Constitutional Convention.  Unionist State Senator.  U.S. Attorney General appointed by President Lincoln in 1864, he served until 1866. 

 

SUMNER, Charles, 1811-1874, Massachusetts, statesman, lawyer, writer, editor, educator, abolitionist leader.  U.S. Senator.  Leader of the Radical Republicans in the Senate and of the anti-slavery movement in Massachusetts.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

TEN EYCK, John Conover, 1814-1879, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Senator from New Jersey.  Was a Whig until 1856.  Joined Republican Party in 1856.  Chosen Senator in 1859.  Served until March 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

TRACY, Uriah, 1755-1807, abolitionist, lawyer, political leader, general.  U.S. House of Representatives, Connecticut.  U.S. Senator.  Member of the Connecticut Society for the Promotion of Freedom and Relief of Persons Unlawfully Holden in Bondage, founded c. 1790. 

 

TRUMBULL, Lyman, lawyer, U.S. Senator.  Trumbull was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1854, but was appointed by the state legislature to serve in the U.S. Senate.  He served in the Senate as a member of the Republican Party from 1855 to 1873.  As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Trumbull co-wrote the Thirteenth Amendment.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

UPHAM, William, 1792-1853, Leicester, Massachusetts, lawyer, member of Vermont House of Representatives, Whig U.S. Senator, 1843-1853.  Opposed slavery.  He stated, “Slavery is a crime against humanity and a sore evil in the body politic.”

 

WADE, Benjamin Franklin, 1800-1878, lawyer, jurist, strong and active opponent of slavery.  In 1839, opposed enactment of stronger fugitive slave law, later calling for its repeal.  U.S. Senator, March 1851-1869.  Opposed Kansas-Nebraska Bill of 1854.  Reported bill to abolish slavery in U.S. Territories in 1862.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

WALKER, Isaac P., 1813-1872, lawyer, U.S. Senator, anti-slavery Democrat from Wisconsin. 

 

WALKER, Robert John, 1801-1869, Northumberland, Pennsylvania, statesman, lawyer, United States Senator.  Sustained treaty for suppressing the African slave trade.  Advocate for gradual emancipation and colonization of slaves.  Freed his own slaves.  During Civil War, supported emancipation as a necessity for Union victory.  Strong supporter of the Union.

 

WILLEY, Waitman Thomas, b. 1811, lawyer.  U.S. Senator from Virginia (1861), later West Virginia (1863).  Served in Senate until March 1871.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WILSON, Henry, 1812-1875, statesman, abolitionist leader, statesman.  Massachusetts state senator.  U.S. Senator.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Member, Free Soil Party.  Founder of the Republican Party.  Strong opponent of slavery.  Became abolitionist in 1830s.  Opposed annexation of Texas as a slave state.  Bought and edited Boston Republican newspaper. 

 

WRIGHT, Silas, 1795-1847, statesman, Congressman, U.S. Senator, soldier, favored restriction and abolition of slavery.  Congressman from December 1827 through March 1829, U.S. Senator from 1833 to December 1844, Governor of New York State, 1844-1847. Opposed expansion of slavery into the new territories acquired from Mexico.

 



United States Congressional Representatives Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

ARNOLD, Isaac N., 1815-1885, U.S. Congressman, attorney, abolitionist, anti-slavery activist.  Arnold served two terms in the House of Representatives, 1860-1864.  In 1864, he introduced the first resolution in Congress for a Constitutional amendment to abolish slavery.  Arnold was an early friend of Abraham Lincoln in Illinois.  He also was a delegate to the national Free Soil Convention in 1848.  Arnold also advocated for emancipation of slaves in the territories.  While a Congressman, he defended President Lincoln’s policies.  In February 1864, he introduced a resolution for a Constitutional amendment abolishing slavery, with the following statement: “You can have no permanent peace while slavery lives ..... Your contest with it is to the death. Your implacable enemy now reels and staggers. Strike the decisive blow. You could not if you would, and you ought not if you could, make terms of compromise with slavery." --- (Excerpted from "The Power, Duty, and Necessity of Destroying Slavery in the Rebel States" Speech of Hon. Isaac Newton Arnold of Illinois, delivered in the House of Representatives, January 6, 1864.)  In 1867, he published The History of Abraham Lincoln and the Overthrow of Slavery.  In 1884, he wrote a biography entitled The Life of Lincoln.

 

ASHMUN, George, 1870-1823, Massachusetts, statesman, lawyer, Congressman.

 

BARD, David, U.S. Congressman from Pennsylvania, opposed slavery, proposed a tax on slavery on February 14, 1804.

 

BATES, Edward, 1793-1869, Virginia, statesman, lawyer, Society of Friends, Quaker.  Congressman.  U.S. Attorney General, Lincoln’s cabinet.  Member, Free Labor Party, Missouri.  Anti-slavery activist.

 

BAYARD, James Ashton, 1767-1815, statesman, diplomat, leader of Federalists, member of U.S. Congress from Delaware, opposed slavery as a member of U.S. House of Representatives.

 

BIDWELL, Barnabas, 1763-1833, writer, lawyer, member of the U.S. Congress from Massachusetts, opposed slavery in U.S. House of Representatives

 

BINGHAM, John Armor, 1815-1900, U.S. Congressman, judge advocate, ambassador.  Bingham was a Republican Congressman from Ohio’s 21st District, 1855-1863.  He later served in Ohio’s 16th District from 1865-1873.  During the Civil War, Bingham was a Radical Republican and a strong supporter of Lincoln and the Union.

 

BLACKBURN, William Jasper, b. 1820, newspaper editor, U.S. Congressman, printer, opponent of slavery.  Published Blackburn’s Homer’s Iliad, in Homer, Louisiana.  Published pro-Union paper in the South during the Civil War.  Published editorials against the assault in the Senate against Charles Sumner, who was opposed to slavery.

 

BLEEKER, Harmanus, 1779-1849, Albany, New York, attorney, U.S. congressman.  Founder and officer of the Albany auxiliary of the American Colonization Society.

 

BLISS, Philemon, 1813-1889, lawyer, U.S. congressman, 1854, Chief Justice, Dakota Territory in 1861, elected Supreme Court of Missouri, 1868.  Helped found anti-slavery  Free Soil Party.  Agent of the American Anti-Slavery Society (AASS).

 

BOUDINOT, Elias, 1740-1821, New Jersey, philanthropist, lawyer, Revolutionary statesman, U.S. Congressman, opponent of slavery.  Trustee of Princeton.  Former president of the Congress of Confederation.  Secretary of Foreign Affairs.  Supported right to petition Congress against slavery.

 

BOUTWELL, George Sewall, 1818-1905, Secretary of the U.S. Treasury, 20th Governor of Massachusetts, U.S. Senator and Representative from the State of Massachusetts, abolitionist.  Boutwell was a founding member of the Republican Party.  He was an advocate for African American citizenship and voting rights during the Reconstruction period.  As a Congressman, he voted for the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

 

BRADLEY, Stephan Row, 1754-1830, jurist, Member of Congress, U.S. Senator, New Jersey, opposed slavery in U.S. Congress.

 

BRECKINRIDGE, James, 1763-1833, lawyer, founding officer and charter member of the American Colonization Society in Washington, DC, in 1816.

 

BURLINGAME, Anson, 1820-1870, New Berlin. New York, diplomat, lawyer, orator, Republican United States Congressman.  Anti-slavery activist in the House of Representatives.

 

COLDEN, Cadallader David, 1769-1834, New York, lawyer, soldier, opponent of slavery, 54th Mayor of New York City, U.S. Congressman.  President of the New York Manumission Society (established 1785).

 

COLFAX, Schuyler, Jr., 1823-1865, statesman, political leader, abolitionist.  Colfax was a Congressman from Indiana, 1855-1869, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, 1863-1869.  He was the 17th Vice President of the United States, 1869-1873, under President Ulysses S. Grant.  Throughout his political career, Colfax was a strong opponent of slavery.  In 1862, he was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives.  He was also a strong supporter of President Lincoln and voted for the Thirteenth Amendment, abolishing slavery.

 

CONWAY, Martin Franklin, 1829-1882, U.S. Congressman, diplomat, jurist, abolitionist.  Conway was an advocate for the Free State Anti-Slavery Movement in Kansas.  Conway was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Kansas, and served from 1861 to 1863.  He was strongly opposed to slavery and was known as a Radical Republican in Congress.

 

CORWIN, Thomas, 1794-1865, Lebanon, Ohio, attorney, statesman, diplomat, opposed slavery, U.S. Congressman, Governor of Ohio, U.S. Senator, Secretary of the Treasury.  Director of the American Colonization Society, 1833-1834.

 

CRESWELL, John Angel James, 1828-1891, U.S. Senator, Congressman, Postmaster General of the United States.  Creswell served as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maryland’s 1st District, 1863-1865.  He was an ardent supporter of Abraham Lincoln and the Union cause.  He was a member of the Radical Republicans, and was a strong advocate for the abolition of slavery and for civil rights for African Americans.  He was elected U.S. Senator from Maryland in 1865 and remained in office from 1865-1867.  In 1869, President Grant appointed him as Postmaster General of the United States.

 

DAVENPORT, Franklin, 1755-1832, abolitionist, soldier, New Jersey legislature, U.S. Senator 1789-1799, U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey 1799-1801, member and delegate of the New Jersey Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery, founded 1793, nephew of Benjamin Franklin.

 

DAVIS, Henry Winter, 1817-1865, statesman, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 3rd District of Maryland, 1854, 1856, 1858, 1863-1865.  Anti-slavery activist in Congress.  Supported enlistment of African Americans in Union Army.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DAVIS, John, 1787-1854, Northborough, Massachusetts, lawyer, statesman, four-term U.S. Congressman, Governor of Massachusetts, U.S. Senator, 1835-1841.  Opposed the war with Mexico and introduction of slavery in U.S. territories.  Supported the Wilmot Proviso and opposed the Compromise Acts of 1850.

 

DAVIS, Thomas, 1806-1895, North Providence, Rhode Island, manufacturer, Member of U.S. House of Representatives, 1853-1855, abolitionist, American Anti-Slavery Society, Manager, 1848-52.  Disapproved of the Missouri Compromise.

 

DAVIS, Thomas T., 1810-1872, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1862 and 1864 from Syracuse, New York.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery

 

DEXTER, Samuel, 1761-1816, lawyer, jurist.  Member of U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts.  U.S. House of Representatives, 1793-1795.  U.S. Senator, December 1799-June 1800.  Opposed slavery as member of U.S. House of Representatives.  Secretary of War and Treasury.

 

DICKINSON, John, 1732-1808, founding father, statesman, political pamphleteer, Congressman from Delaware, opponent of slavery and slave trade.

 

ELIOT, Thomas Dawes, 1808-1870, lawyer, U.S. Congressman.  Eliot was an anti-slavery advocate and member of the Free Soil Party.  He was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from 1854-1855 and 1859-1869 representing Massachusetts’ 1st District.  Eliot was a member of the Radical Republican faction in Congress.

 

FARNSWORTH, John Franklin, 1820-1879, U.S. Congressman, Union general, abolitionist.  Farnsworth was a Radical Republican U.S. Congressman who served two terms in Congress from 1857-1861.  He was not reelected for a third term.  At President Lincoln’s direction, Farnsworth was commissioned a Colonel after organizing the 8th Illinois Cavalry.  He became a Brigadier General of Volunteers in December 1862.  In March 1863, he resigned his commission and became a Congressman representing the St. Charles District in Illinois.

 

FENTON, Reuben Eaton, 1819-1885, Carroll Chatauqua County, New York, statesman, lawyer, U.S. Congressman.  Voted against extension of slavery in the Kansas-Nebraska Bill.  Elected Governor in 1864.

 

FESSENDEN, Samuel, 1784-1869, Portland, Maine, lawyer, jurist, soldier, abolitionist.  Vice president, 1833-1839, and founding member of the American Anti-Slavery Society, December 1833.  Leader, active member of the Liberty Party.  Early member of the Republican Party.  Father of Treasury Secretary William Pitt Fessenden and Congressman Samuel Clement Fessenden.

 

FESSENDEN, William Pitt, 1806-1869, lawyer, statesman, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury.  Elected to Congress in 1840 as a member of the Whig Party opposing slavery.  Moved to repeal rule that excluded anti-slavery petitions before Congress.  Strong leader in Congress opposing slavery.  Elected to the Senate in 1854.  He opposed the Kansas-Nebraska bill as well as the Dred Scott Supreme Court Case.  Co-founder of the Republican Party.  Prominent leader of the anti-slavery faction of the Republican Party in the U.S. Senate.  As U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FINDLAY, William, 1741-1821, member of U.S. Congress, elected 1791-1799 and 1803-1817, Pennsylvania, opposed slavery.

 

FOOT, Solomon, 1802-1866, lawyer, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator.  Opposed war with Mexico.  Opposed slavery and its extension into new territories.  Founding member of the Republican Party.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FOSTER, Henry Allen, b. 1800, Cazenovia, New York, U.S. Congressman and Senator.  Vice-President, American Colonization Society, 1838-41.

 

FOWLER, Orin, 1791-1852, Lebanon, Connecticut, clergyman.  Free-Soil U.S. Congressman, temperance activist, strong opponent of slavery. 

 

FULLER, Timothy, 1778-1835, U.S. Congressman, Massachusetts, voted against extension of slavery in 1819.  In the Congressional debates, Congressman Fuller said: “All Europe, the whole civilized world, are spectators of the scene.  Our Declaration of Independence, our Revolution, our State institutions, and, above all, the great principles of our Federal Constitution, are arrayed on one side, and our legislative acts and national measures, the practical specification of our real principles and character, on the other.”

 

GALLOWAY, Samuel, 1811-1872, lawyer, U.S. Congressman, Ohio, opponent of slavery.

 

GARFIELD, James Abram, 1831-1881, statesman, lawyer, Union general, abolitionist.  Lt. Colonel, 42nd Regiment Ohio Volunteers.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio’s 19th District, 1863-1880.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Twentieth President of the United States, March 4, 1881 to September 19, 1881.  Garfield was a strong supporter of the Union and was opposed to slavery.  Garfield was a member of the Radical wing of the Republican Party.  Garfield supported Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.

 

GATES, Seth Merrill, 1800-1877, abolitionist leader, lawyer, newspaper editor, U.S. Congressman, Whig Party, Western New York.  Anti-slavery political leader in House of Representatives. 

 

GERRY, Elbridge, 1744-1814, Massachusetts, statesman, founding father.  Member of the Constitutional Convention.  U.S. Congressman.  Supported and encouraged rights of citizens to petition Congress for redress of grievances against slavery.

 

GIDDINGS, Joshua Reed, 1795-1865, lawyer, statesman, U.S. Congressman, Whig from Ohio, elected in 1838. First abolitionist elected to House of Representatives. Worked to eliminate “gag rule,” which prohibited anti-slavery petitions. Served until 1859.  Leader and founder of the Republican Party. Argued that slavery in territories and District of Columbia was unlawful.  Active in Underground Railroad.  Was censured by the House of Representatives for his opposition to slavery.  Opposed Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 and against further expansion of slavery into the new territories acquired during the Mexican War of 1846.

 

GRINNELL, Josiah Bushnell, 1821-1891, New Haven, Vermont, abolitionist.  Republican Party co-founder.  Theologian.  Founded First Congregational Church, Washington, DC, in 1851.  Founded town of Grinnell, Iowa.  Iowa State Senator, 1856-1860.  Congressman 1863-1867.  Supported radical abolitionist John Brown.  Advocated for use of colored troops in the Union Army.  As Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

HALE, John Parker, 1806-1873, New Hampshire, statesman, diplomat, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator.  Member of the anti-slavery Liberty Party.  President of the Free Soil Party, 1852.  Elected to Congress in 1842, he opposed the 21st Rule suppressing anti-slavery petition to Congress.  Refused to support the annexation of Texas in 1845.  Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1846, he was the first distinctively anti-slavery Senator.  Adamantly opposed slavery for his 16 years in office.  In 1851, served as Counsel in the trial of rescued slave Shadrach.  In 1852, he was nominated for President of the United States, representing the Free Soil Party.  As U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HALE, Salma, 1787-1866, historian, congressman, abolitionist. 

 

HALL, Robert Bernard, 1812-1868, Episcopal clergyman, member of the Massachusetts State Senate, U.S. Congressman, 1855-1859, one of twelve founders of the New England Anti-Slavery Society in Boston in 1832 and the American Anti-Slavery Society in Philadelphia in 1832

 

HASTINGS, Seth, member of the U.S. Congress from Massachusetts, opposed slavery as member of U.S. House of Representatives.

 

HEMPHILL, Joseph, 1770-1842, jurist, Congressman from Pennsylvania.  Opposed extension of slavery into the new territories.  Speaking on the concept of citizenship in relation to slavery, he state in the debate of 1820: “If being a native, and free born, and of parents belonging to no other nation or tribe, does not constitute a citizen in this country, I am at a loss to know in what manner citizenship is acquired by birth… when a foreigner is naturalized, he is only put in the place of a native freeman.  This is the genuine idea of naturalization… But citizenship is rather in the nature of a compact, expressly or tacitly made; it is a political tie, and the mutual obligations are contribution and protection.”

 

HILLHOUSE, James

 

HOWARD, Benjamin Chew, 1791-1872, Maryland, statesman, U.S. Congressman.  Manager of the Maryland Society of the American Colonization Society.

 

JACKSON, William, 1783-1855, Massachusetts, newspaper publisher, abolitionist, temperance activist.  U.S. Congressman, Whig Party.  Vice president, 1833-1836, and founding member of the American Anti-Slavery Society, December 1833.  Founding member, Liberty Party.  President of the American Missionary Society from 1846-1854.

 

JULIAN, George Washington, 1817-1899, Society of Friends, Quaker, statesman, lawyer, radical abolitionist leader from Indiana, vice president of the Free Soil Party, 1852.  Member of U.S. Congress from Indiana, 1850-1851.  Was against the Compromise of 1850 and the Fugitive Slave Act.  Fought in court to prevent fugitive slaves from being returned to their owners.  Joined and supported early Republican Party.  Re-elected to Congress, 1861-1871.  Supported emancipation of slaves.  Husband of Ann Elizabeth Finch, who was likewise opposed to slavery.  After her death in 1860, he married Laura Giddings, daughter of radical abolitionist Joshua Giddings. 

 

KASSON, John Adams, 1822-1910, lawyer, diplomat, anti-slavery activist.  Kasson was a delegate to the Republican national convention in 1860.  He helped draft the Republican Party platform, which included strong anti-slavery planks.  In 1861, President Lincoln appointed Kasson First Assistant U.S. Postmaster General.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Iowa.  Served as a Congressman from 1863-1867, 1873-1877, 1881-1884.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

KELLEY, William Darrah, 1814-1890, lawyer, jurist, abolitionist.  Kelley was a member of the anti-slavery faction of the Democratic Party and later a founding member of the Republican Party.  Kelley was noted for a speech he gave in 1854 against slavery entitled, “Slavery in the Territories.”  This speech was widely read and published.  After the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, Kelley resigned from the Democratic Party and became a founding member of the anti-slavery Republican Party.  He was also a friend of Abraham Lincoln.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.  Elected in 1860.  Called the “Father of the House.”  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Kelley also was a strong advocate for the utilization of African American soldiers in the Union Army.  After the war, he also advocated for suffrage from African Americans and introduced a bill, which became law, giving African Americans the right to vote in the District of Columbia.

 

KING, John Alsop, 1788-1867, statesman, lawyer, soldier, political leader, diplomat, U.S. Congressman, Governor of New York.  He opposed compromises on issues of slavery, especially the Fugitive Slave Law.  Supported admission of California as a free state.  Active in the Whig Party and later founding member of the Republican Party in 1856.  Elected Governor of New York in 1856, serving one term. 

 

KING, Preston, 1806-1865, U.S. Congressman, politician.  Son of founding father Rufus King.  Opponent of the extension of slavery into the new territories acquired from Mexico after 1846.  Supporter of the Wilmot Proviso in Congress.  Co-founder of Free Soil Party.  Later organized Republican Party and supported William H. Seward and Thurlow Weed.

 

KNOWLTON, Ebenezer, 1815-174, Pittsville, New Hampshire, abolitionist, clergyman.  Member of the Maine House of Representatives and the U.S. House of Representatives, 1855-1857.  Early member of the Republican Party.  Lifelong opponent of slavery and temperance activist.  Founder of Bates College in Lewiston, Maine.  Coordinator of Free Will Baptist newspaper, Morning Star.

 

LEE, Richard Bland, 1761-1827, statesman.  Member of the first U.S. Congress.  Brother of Revolutionary War hero Henry Lee.  Charter member of the American Colonization Society in 1816. 

 

LINCOLN, Abraham, 1809-1865, 16th President of the United States (1861-1865), opponent of slavery.  Issued Emancipation Proclamation January 1, 1863, freeing slaves in southern states.  By the end of the Civil War, more than four million slaves were liberated from bondage. 

 

LIVERMORE, Samuel, 1732-1803, New Hampshire, lawyer, statesman.  Member of Congress, U.S. Senator 1785-1805, Chief Justice of the State of New Hampshire.  Voted against Fugitive Slave Act of 1793. 

 

LOVEJOY, Owen, 1811-1864, clergyman, abolitionist, U.S. Congressman.  Illinois Anti-Slavery Society.  Active in Underground Railroad.  Member, Illinois State Legislature.  Brother of anti-slavery newspaper publisher, Elijah Parrish Lovejoy.  Like his brother, Owen Lovejoy was a strong supporter of William Lloyd Garrison.  From 1838 to 1856, Lovejoy helped organize many of the anti-slavery Congregational churches in Illinois.  Lovejoy was then elected to the Illinois State legislature in 1854.  He helped organize the Republican Party in the state.  Lovejoy was a close friend to Lincoln and supported him during his presidency.  Lovejoy was elected to Congress in 1856 and actively supported the abolition of slavery in Congress until his death in 1864.  Lovejoy introduced the bill to end slavery in the District of Columbia.  He also supported the bills prohibiting slavery in the U.S. territories.

 

MANN, Horace, 1796-1859, educator, political leader, social reformer.  U.S. Congressman, Whig Party, from Massachusetts.  Opposed extension of slavery in territories annexed in the Mexican War of 1846.  Said, “I consider no evil as great as slavery...”  Argued against the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850.  Reelected to Congress and served from April 1848 until March 1853.  

 

MARSH, Charles, 1765-1849, Vermont, attorney, U.S. Congressman.  Life member, original charter member, and supporter of the American Colonization Society (ACS).  Officer, Vermont auxiliary of the ACS. 

 

MERCER, Charles Fenton, 1778-1858, Leesburg, Virginia, soldier, political leader, opponent of slavery.  Vice President, American Colonization Society, 1834-1841, Director, 1839-1840, life member.  Called the “American Wilberforce.”  Introduced a bill in the U.S. Congress for the federal government to “make such regulations and arrangements, as he deem expedient, for safeguarding, support and removal of” the Africans in the United States.  $100,000 was appropriated by the bill.  It became the Slave Trade Act of 1819.  It became law on March 4, 1819.

 

MERCER, John Francis, 1759-1821, soldier, statesman, planter.  Delegate to the Continental Congress.  Congressman from Maryland.  Voted against the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793.

 

MILNOR, James, 1773-1844, Pennsylvania, New York, opponent of slavery, lawyer, clergyman.  Member of U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania, 1811-1813.  Milnor was an officer in the Pennsylvania Anti-Slavery Society in 1798.  Member of New York auxiliary of the American Colonization Society.

 

MITCHELL, S. L., Member of Congress from New York.  Opposed slavery as member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

MORRILL, Justin Smith, 1810-1898.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Vermont.  Morrill was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from Vermont’s 2nd District in 1854.  Served as Congressman December 1855-March 1867.  U.S. Senator 1867-1898.  Morrill was one of the founding members of the anti-slavery Republican Party.  He sponsored the Morrill Act, which was also the Land Grant College Act, which was signed into law by Lincoln in 1862.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

MOTT, Richard, 1804-1888, Mamaroneck, New York, abolitionist.  Mayor of Toledo, Ohio.  Anti-slavery Republican U.S. Congressman, 1855-1859.  Brother of James Mott and brother-in-law of Lucretia Mott.

 

NELSON, Hugh, 1768-1836, Virginia, U.S. Congressman, diplomat, jurist.  Vice-President of Richmond, Virginia, auxiliary of the American Colonization Society.  Son of Virginia Governor Thomas Nelson.

 

NICHOLAS, John, 1756(?)-1819, jurist.  Democratic Member of U.S. Congress from Virginia, 1793-1801.  Opposed slavery as Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

NILES, Nathaniel, 1741-1828, lawyer, jurist, theologian.  U.S. Congressman from Vermont, October 1791-March 1795.  Voted against Fugitive Slave Act of 1793.

 

ORTH, Godlove Stein, 1817-1882, lawyer, diplomat.  Member of the anti-slavery faction of the Whig Party.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  U.S. Congressman December 1863-March 1871, December 1873-March 1875.  Voted for Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the Constitution, abolishing slavery, establishing citizenship, due process and equal protections, and establishing voting rights for African Americans.

 

OWEN, Robert Dale, 1801-1877, author, abolitionist, diplomat, reformer.  Member of the American Freedman’s Inquiry Commission and the U.S. War Department, 1863.  Democratic Congressman from Indiana.  Anti-slavery and women’s rights activist.  Strong advocate of wartime emancipation of slaves.  Wrote “The Wrong of Slavery, the Right of Emancipation, and the Future of the African Race” (Philadelphia, 1864), of which Secretary Salmon P. Chace wrote that it “had more effect in deciding the president to make the [Emancipation] Proclamation than all other communications combined.”

 

PAGE, John, 1743-1808, statesman, soldier.  Member of Congress from Virginia.  Served in Congress March 1789-March 1797.  Governor of Virginia, 1802.  Opposed slavery as Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

PALFREY, John Gorham, 1796-1881, author, theologian, educator, opponent of slavery.  Member of Congress from Massachusetts from 1847-1849 (Whig Party).  Early anti-slavery activist.  Palfrey was known as a “Conscience Whig” who adamantly opposed slavery.  He freed 16 slaves whom he inherited from his father, who was a Louisiana plantation owner.  While in Congress, Palfrey was a member of a small group of anti-slavery Congressmen, which included Joshua Giddings, of Ohio, Amos Tuck, of New Hampshire, Daniel Gott, of New York, David Wilmot, of Pennsylvania, and Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois.  In 1848, Palfrey failed to be reelected because of his anti-slavery views.  In 1851, he was an unsuccessful Free Soil candidate for the office of Governor in Massachusetts.

 

PARKER, Jonathan, Member of Congress from Virginia.  Opposed slavery as member of U.S. House of Representatives.

 

PARKER, Josiah, 1751-1810, Virginia, Revolutionary War soldier, politician, Member of the first Congress.  Supported citizens’ right to petition Congress against slavery.  Called slavery “a practice so nefarious.”  Voted against the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793. 

 

PHILLIPS, Stephen Clarendon, 1801-1857, philanthropist.  U.S. Congressman, Whig Party.  Also member of Free Soil Party.

 

PIKE, Frederick Augustus, 1817-1886, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maine.  Member of Congress 1861-1869.  Active in emancipation of slaves.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

QUINCY, Josiah, 1772-1864, statesman.  U.S. Congressman from Massachusetts.  Opposed slavery as Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

RANTOUL, Robert, Jr., 1805-1852, statesman, reformer, lawyer, writer, publisher, industrialist, U.S. Congressman.  Democratic and Free Soil Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Served one term, December 1851-1852.  Strong opponent of slavery and the Fugitive Slave laws.  Opposed extension of slavery into the new territories.  Served as defense counsel for escaped slave Thomas Simms in Massachusetts State Court.

 

ROBERTS, Anthony Ellmaker, 1803-1885, Pennsylvania, abolitionist.  U.S. Marshal.  Two-term Member of Congress from the Ninth District of Pennsylvania, 1855-1859.  Republican leader in Republican Party in Pennsylvania.  Opposed slavery.  Roberts was supported by Congressional leader Thaddeus Stevens. 

 

ROBERTS, Jonathan Manning, 1771-1854, Upper Merion County, Pennsylvania, U.S. Senator, U.S. Congressman, opponent of slavery.  Called for the prohibition of slavery from Missouri in the Senate.

 

ROLLINS, James Sidney, 1812-1888, lawyer, soldier.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri.  After Mexican War (1846), opposed extension of slavery into the new territories.  Served as Congressman July 1861-March 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SACKETT, William Augustus, 1811-1895, New York, lawyer, politician.  Elected to U.S. House of Representatives from New York as a member of the Whig Party.  Served in Congress two terms from 1849-1853.  Opposed extension of slavery into the New territories and the fugitive slave laws.  Early member of the Republican Party. 

 

SEDGWICK, Theodore, 1780-1839, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. Congress from Massachusetts, opposed slavery in Congress.  Advocated Free Trade and temperance reform.

 

SERGEANT, John, 1779-1852, lawyer.  U.S. Congressman from Pennsylvania.  Opposed extension of slavery into the territories.  Stated in Congressional debate of 1819:  “It is to no purpose, to say that the question of slavery is a question of state concern.  It affects the Union, in its interests, its resources, and character, permanently; perhaps forever.  One single State, to gratify the desire of a moment, may do what all the Union cannot undo; may produce an everlasting evil, shame and reproach.  And why?  Because it is a State right…  Sir, you may turn this matter as you will; Missouri, when she becomes a State, grows out of the Constitution; she is formed under the care of Congress, and admitted by Congress; and if she has a right to establish slavery, it is a right derived directly from the Constitution, and conferred upon her through the instrumentality of Congress.”  Further, Sergeant said, “If Missouri be permitted to establish slavery, we shall bring upon ourselves the charges of hypocrisy and insincerity, and upon the Constitution a deep stain, which must impair its lustre, and weaken its title to the public esteem.” 

 

SLADE, William, 1786-1859.  Governor of Vermont.  U.S. Congressman from Vermont (Whig party).  Submitted numerous anti-slavery petitions to Congress, December 1837.

 

SLOANE, James Renwick Wilson, 1833-1886, clergyman, educator.  President of Richmond College, Ohio, and Geneva College, Ohio. 

 

SMILIE, John, 1741-1812, soldier.  Democratic Member of U.S. Congress from Pennsylvania, opposed slavery in U.S. Congress. 

 

SOUTHARD, Henry, 1749-1842, Member of Congress from New Jersey 1801-1811 and 1815-1821.  Opposed slavery as Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

SPALDING, Rufus Paine, 1798-1886, jurist.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio.  One of the organizers of the Republican Party.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

STEVENS, Thaddeus, 1792-1868, statesman, lawyer, abolitionist leader.  Anti-slavery leader in U.S. House of Representatives.  He represented Pennsylvania’s 8th District from 1849 to 1853.  He was a member of the House from Pennsylvania’s 9th District from March 4, 1859, until his death on August 11, 1868.  As member of Whig Party and leader of the radical Republican Party, urged Lincoln to issue Emancipation Proclamation.  Led fight to pass Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution, abolishing slavery and establishing citizenship, due process and equal protections for African Americans. 

 

STURGES, Jonathan, 1740-1819, lawyer.  U.S. Congressman from Connecticut.  Member of the 1st and 2nd Congress.  Served March 1789-March 1793.  Voted against Fugitive Slave Act of 1793. 

 

SWANWICK, John, Member of U.S. Congress from Pennsylvania.  Opposed slavery in U.S. House of Representatives.

 

SWIFT, Zephaniah, 1759-1823, jurist, U.S. Congressman 1793-1797, anti-slavery activist.

 

TALLMADGE, James, Jr., 1778-1853, lawyer, soldier.  U.S. Congressman, New York.  Introduced legislation in House of Representatives to prohibit slavery in new state of Missouri in 1819.  Challenged Illinois right to statehood with state constitution permitting existence of slavery in the new state.

 

TAPPAN, Mason Weare, 1817-1886, lawyer, soldier.  U.S. Congressman, Free Soil Party, 1855-1861. 

 

TAYLOR, John W., 1784-1854, abolitionist.  Nine term Democratic U.S. Congressman from New York, 1813-1833.  Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Proposed legislation in 1819 to prohibit slavery in Arkansas Territory.  Later organized the Whig and National Republican Parties.  Taylor said during debate: “Our votes this day will determine whether the high destinies of this region, of these generations, shall be fulfilled, or whether we shall defeat them by permitting slavery, with all its baleful consequences, to inherit the wind.”

 

THACHER, George, 1754-1824, jurist.  Delegate from Massachusetts to the Continental Congress 1787-1788.  U.S. Congressman from Massachusetts.  Voted against Fugitive Slave Act of 1793. 

 

TREADWELL, U.S. Congressman from New York, voted against Fugitive Slave Act of 1793.

 

TUCK, Amos, 1810-1879, educator, college trustee, anti-slavery activist.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  In 1842, Tuck was elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives as a Democrat.  Because of his anti-slavery stance, he was ousted from the party.  He was elected as an independent to the 30th U.S. Congress in 1847, serving until 1853, representing New Hampshire’s 1st District.  He was elected to the 31st Congress as a Whig, as a Free Soil candidate, and later to the 32nd Congress as an anti-slavery Whig.  Tuck was an early founding member of the anti-slavery Republican Party.  While in Congress, Tuck was a member of a small group of anti-slavery Congressmen, which included Joshua Giddings, of Ohio, John Palfrey, of Massachusetts, Daniel Gott, of New York, David Wilmot, of Pennsylvania, and Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois.  Tuck was a close personal friend of Abraham Lincoln.  He supported Lincoln’s nomination as President.

 

VARNUM, Joseph Bradley, 1750-1821, soldier, Member of Congress from Massachusetts 1780-1795.  Opposed slavery as Member of U.S. House of Representatives.  U.S. Senator 1811-1817.  Two-term Speaker of House of Representatives 1807-1811.

 

VROOM, Peter Dumont, 1791-1873, Somerville, New Jersey, lawyer, state legislator, Governor of New Jersey, diplomat.  American Colonization Society, Vice-President, 1838-1841.

 

WALKER, Amasa, 1799-1875, Boston, Massachusetts, political economist, abolitionist.  Republican U.S. Congressman from Massachusetts.  Active and vigorous opponent of slavery.  American Anti-Slavery Society (AASS) Manager, 1837-1840, 1840-1841, 1843-1844, Counsellor, Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society, 1840-1841.  Co-founder of Free Soil Party in 1848.  Served in Congress December 1862 through March 1863.

 

WALN, Robert, 1765-1836, businessman, economist.  Member of the U.S. Congress from Pennsylvania.  Served in Congress 1798-1801 in Federalist Party.  Opposed slavery in U.S. House of Representatives. 

 

WASHBURNE, Elihu Benjamin, 1816-1887, statesman, lawyer, ambassador, political leader, anti-slavery activist.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois.  Congressman from December 1853 through March 1869.  Called “Father of the House.”  Washburne was an early member of the Republican Party and a leader of the Radical Republican faction.  He supported racial equality for African Americans.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  He served on the Joint Committee on Reconstruction, which wrote the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  He later served as Minister to France from 1869 to 1877.

 

WENTWORTH, John, 1815-1888, New Hampshire, lawyer, editor, newspaper publisher.  U.S. congressman, 1843-1851, 1853-1855, 1865-1867.  Mayor of Chicago, Illinois, elected in 1857 and 1860.  Anti-slavery advocate.  Early co-founder of an anti-slavery political party that became the Republican Party. 

 

WILMOT, David, 1814-1868, lawyer, jurist, anti-slavery activist, U.S. Congressman, Pennsylvania.  He was an early founder of the Republican Party in Pennsylvania.  Introduced Wilmot Proviso into Congress to exclude slavery in territories acquired from Mexico in 1846-1849.  The Proviso stated:  “Provided, That, as an express and fundamental condition to the acquisition of any territory from the Republic of Mexico by the United States, by virtue of any treaty which may be negotiated between them, and to the use by the Executive of the moneys herein appropriated, neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall ever exist in any part of said territory, except for crime, whereof the party shall first be duly convicted.”  Congressman Wilmot’s writings suggest that one of his motives was to protect White laborers in the new territory.  In a New York speech, Wilmot talked of the end of slavery when he stated, “Keep it within its given limits… and in time it will wear itself out.  Its existence can only be perpetrated by constant expansion…  Slavery has within itself the seeds of its own destruction.”  In 1856, Wilmot attended the Republican national convention and supported John C. Frémont as its presidential candidate.  He was appointed by the Pennsylvania state legislature to serve in the U.S. Senate from 1861-1863.

 



State Governors Who Opposed Slavery

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

Note: list in progress

 

ANDREW, John Albion, 1818-1867, reformer, anti-slavery advocate, Governor of Massachusetts, member Conscience Whig, Free Soil Party, Republican Party.  Supported John Brown in legal defense. 

 

ANTHONY, Henry Bowen, 1815-1884, Republican, statesman, newspaper editor, Governor of Rhode Island, U.S. Senator 1859-1884, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BRANCH, John, 1782-1863, Raleigh, North Carolina, statesman, political leader, Secretary of the Navy, Governor of North Carolina.  President, Raleight auxiliary of the American Colonization Society. 

 

BRYAN, George, 1731-1791, Dublin, Ireland, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, abolitionist leader, legislator, businessman, statesman, jurist.  Introduced abolition bills.  Elected the first Vice President of Pennsylvania (Lieutenant Governor), 1777-1779, Second President (Governor), 1778.

 

CHASE, Salmon Portland, 1808-1873, statesman, Governor of Ohio, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, 1864-1873, abolitionist, member, Liberty Party, Free Soil Party, Anti-Slavery Republican Party.  “A slave is a person held, as property, by legalized force, against natural right.” – Chase.

 

CLARK, Myron Holley, 1806-1892, Governor of New York State.

 

COLES, Edward, 1786-1868, statesman, abolitionist, Governor of Illinois (elected 1822), member American Colonization Society.  Private secretary to President James Madison, 1809-1815.  Manumitted his slaves in 1819.  Worked with fellow abolitionist James Lemen to keep Illinois a free state.  Opposed pro-slavery group in Illinois state legislature.

 

CORWIN, Thomas, 1794-1865, Lebanon, Ohio, attorney, statesman, diplomat, opposed slavery, U.S. Congressman, Governor of Ohio, U.S. Senator, Secretary of the Treasury.  Director of the American Colonization Society, 1833-1834.

 

DAVIS, John, 1787-1854, Northborough, Massachusetts, lawyer, statesman, four-term U.S. Congressman, Governor of Massachusetts, U.S. Senator, 1835-1841.  Opposed the war with Mexico and introduction of slavery in U.S. territories.  Supported the Wilmot Proviso and opposed the Compromise Acts of 1850. 

 

DENNISON, William, 1815-1882, Civil War governor of Ohio, lawyer, founding member of Republican Party, state Senator, opposed admission of Texas and the extension of slavery into the new territories.  Anti-slavery man, supporter of Abraham Lincoln.

 

FENTON, Reuben Eaton, 1819-1885, Carroll Chatauqua County, New York, statesman, lawyer, U.S. Congressman.  Voted against extension of slavery in the Kansas-Nebraska Bill.  Elected Governor in 1864.

 

FINDLAY, William, 1741-1821, member of U.S. Congress, elected 1791-1799 and 1803-1817, Pennsylvania, opposed slavery.

 

GAMBLE, Hamilton Rowan, 1798-1864, lawyer, political leader.  Member of the American Colonization Society. Governor and Secretary of State of Missouri.  Missouri Supreme Court Chief Justice (Whig Party).  Dissented in Missouri Supreme Court decision of “Dred Scott v. Emerson” case, 16th Governor of Missouri, 1861-1864.

 

GEARY, John White, general, statesman, soldier.  Became territorial governor of Kansas on August 18, 1856.  Opposed slavery.  Defended state against pro-slavery “border ruffians” from Missouri.  As Governor, in 1857, he vetoed pro-slavery laws of legislature.

 

GRIMES, James Wilson, 1816-1872, statesman, lawyer.  U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Governor of Iowa, 1854-1858.  Supported by Whigs and Free Soil Democrats.  Elected as Republican Senator in 1859.  Re-elected 1865.

 

JAY, John, 1745-1829, New York, lawyer, statesman, founding father, diplomat, anti-slavery leader.  President of the Continental Congress.  First Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.  Governor of the State of New York, 1795-1801.  New York State’s leading opponent of slavery.  Founder and president of the New York Society for Promoting the Manumission of Slaves and Protecting such of them as Have Been Liberated, founded 1785.  Attempted to end slavery in 1777 and 1785.  In 1799, he signed into law the Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery, which eventually freed all the slaves in New York.  This act was arguably the most comprehensive and largest emancipation in North America before the Civil War. 

 

KILTY, William, 1757-1821, Annapolis, Maryland, Army surgeon, lawyer, jurist, Chancellor (governor) of Maryland.  Member of the Annapolis auxiliary of the American Colonization Society.

 

KING, John Alsop, 1788-1867, statesman, lawyer, soldier, political leader, diplomat, U.S. Congressman, Governor of New York.  He opposed compromises on issues of slavery, especially the Fugitive Slave Law.  Supported admission of California as a free state.  Active in the Whig Party and later founding member of the Republican Party in 1856.  Elected Governor of New York in 1856, serving one term. 

 

KIRKWOOD, Samuel Jordan, 1813-1894, statesman, political leader.  Governor of Iowa, 1860-1864, 1876-1877.  U.S. Senator, 1865-1867, 1877-1881.  Secretary of the Interior, 1881-1882.  Anti-slavery Senator.  Early leader in the Republican Party.  Strong supporter of Abraham Lincoln and the Union. 

 

MERCER, John Francis, 1759-1821, soldier, statesman, planter.  Delegate to the Continental Congress.  Congressman from Maryland.  Voted against the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793.

 

MORGAN, Edwin Dennison, 1811-1883, merchant, soldier, statesman.  Member of the Whig Party, Anti-Slavery Faction.  Republican U.S. Senator from New York.  Chairman of the Republican National Committee, 1856-1864.  Governor of New York, 1858-1862.  Commissioned Major General of Volunteers, he raised 223,000 troops for the Union Army.  U.S. Senator, 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MORRILL, Anson Peaslee, 1803-1887, anti-slavery governor of Maine, U.S. Congressman, 1861-1863.  Brother of abolitionist Lot Myrick Morrill.  Early founding member of the Republican Party in 1856. 

 

MORRILL, Lot Myrick, 1813-1883, lawyer, temperance advocate, opposed slavery, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, 1876, two-term Republican Governor of Maine, U.S. Senator, 1861-1869.  Joined the Republican Party due to his position against slavery and its expansion into the new territories.  Supported the bill in Congress that emancipated slaves in Washington, DC.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. After the war, he supported higher education for African Americans.  In 1866, he supported voting rights for African Americans in Washington, DC. 

 

MORTON, Oliver Perry, 1823-1877, statesman, lawyer, jurist, anti-slavery activist.  Member of the Republican Party.  U.S. Senator and Governor of Indiana, 1861.

 

POMEROY, Samuel Clarke, 1816-1891, Republican U.S. Senator from Kansas.  Active in Kansas “Free State” convention of 1859.  U.S. Senator 1861-1873.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

RAMSEY, Alexander, b. 1815.  Republican U.S. Senator from Minnesota.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  U.S. Congressman (Whig Party) elected 1842, serving until 1847, from Pennsylvania.  First Territorial Governor of Minnesota, 1849-1853.  Governor of state 1860-1863.  Elected U.S. Senator 1863, serving until 1875.  Appointed Secretary of War in 1879. 

 

RANDALL, Alexander, 1819-1872, Ames, New York, jurist, lawyer, abolitionist.  Sixth Governor of Wisconsin, 1858-1861.  Advocate for Black voting rights.  Raised troops for Union Army.  Postmaster General, 1866-1869. 

 

REEDER, Andrew Horatio, 1807-1864, territorial governor of Kansas Territory, anti-slavery political leader, removed from office by President Franklin Pierce for not enforcing pro-slavery laws; elected territorial representative October 9, 1855.

 

RILEY, Bennet, 1787-1853, soldier, territorial governor of California.

 

ROBINSON, Charles, 1818-1894, territorial governor, Kansas, member Free Soil Anti-Slavery Party, 1855.

 

SPRAGUE, William, b. 1830, Union general.  Governor of Rhode Island, 1860-1863.  Republican U.S. Senator from Rhode Island.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

TOMKINS, Daniel D., 1774-1825, statesman.  Vice President of the United States.  Advocate for the abolishment of slavery in the United States.

 

TOMLINSON, Gideon, 1780-1854, Connecticut, politician, lawyer, U.S. Senator, Congressman, Governor of Connecticut.  Member of the Connecticut Society of the American Colonization Society. 

 



Members of the House of Representatives Who Signed the Thirteenth Amendment

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

 

ALLEY, John B., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ALLISON, William Boyd, 1829-1909, Republican, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives 1863-1871, U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

AMES, Oakes, 1804-1873, manufacturer, businessman, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 2nd Massachusetts District 1862-1873, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ANDERSON, Lucien, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ARNOLD, Isaac Newton, 1815-1884, lawyer, historian, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives 1860-1864, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Republican.  Introduced anti-slavery bill in Congress.  Served as an officer in the Union Army.  Active in Free Soil movement of 1848. Protested Fugitive Slave Law, October 1850. Outspoken opponent of slavery. 

 

ASHLEY, James Mitchell, 1824-1896, Ohio, Underground Railroad activist. Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Adamant opponent of slavery.  Member, Free Soil Party, 1848.  Joined Republican Party in 1854.

 

BAILEY, Joseph, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BALDWIN, Augustus, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BALDWIN, John Denison, 1809-1883, journalist, clergyman, Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives 1863-1867, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Editor of the anti-slavery journal, Republican in Hartford, Connecticut.  Owner, editor of Free-Soil Charter Oak at Hartford, Connecticut.  In 1852 became editor of the Commonwealth in Boston.  Supported negro causes.

 

BAXTER, Porter, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BEAMAN, Fernando, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BLAINE, James Gillespie, 1830-1893, statesman.  Founding member of the Republican Party.  Member of Congress 1862-1880.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BLAIR, Jacob B., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BLOW, Henry Taylor, 1817-1875, statesman, diplomat.  Active in pre-Civil War anti-slavery movement.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1863-1867, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BOUTWELL, George Sewall, 1818-1905, statesman, lawyer.  Helped organize the Republican Party.  Member of Congress, 1862-1868.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senator.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BOYD, Sempronius Hamilton, b. 1828, lawyer, soldier.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Colonel, 24th Missouri Volunteers. 

 

BRANDEGEE, Augustus, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BROOMALL, John M., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BROWN, William G., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CLARK, Ambrose W., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CLARKE, Freeman, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

COBB, Amasa, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

COFFROTH, Alex, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

COLE, Cornelius, b. 1822, lawyer.  Member of the National Republican Committee, 1856-1860.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from California, 1863-1865.  U.S. Senator, 1867-1873.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

COLFAX, Schuyler, 1823-1885, statesman, newspaper editor.  Member of Congress, 1854-1869.  Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  Secretary of State.  Opposed slavery as a Republican Member of Congress. Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CRESWELL, John, 1828, statesman, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maryland, 1863-1865.  U.S. Senator 1865-.  Supported the Union.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DAVIS, Henry Winter, 1817-1865, statesman, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 3rd District of Maryland, 1854, 1856, 1858, 1863-1865.  Anti-slavery activist in Congress.  Supported enlistment of African Americans in Union Army.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DAVIS, Thomas T., 1810-1872, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1862 and 1864 from Syracuse, New York.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DAWES, Henry Laurens, b. 1816, Massachusetts, judge, U.S. Congressman from Massachusetts.  Served in Congress 1857-1873. U.S. Senator 1875-1893.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DEMING, Henry Chapion, 1815-1872, lawyer, soldier.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Connecticut, 1863, 1865.  Colonel, commanding 12th Connecticut Regiment.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DIXON, Nathan Fellows, b. 1833, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Rhode Island.  Member of 38th, 39th, 40th and 41st Congress.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DONNELLY, Ignatius, b. 1831, author.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Minnesota 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DRIGGS, John F., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ECKLEY, Ephraim R., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ELIOT, Thomas Dawes, 1808-1870, lawyer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts, 1854-1855, 1859-1869.  Founder of the Republican Party from Massachusetts.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ENGLISH, James Edward, b. 1812, statesman, businessman.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Connecticut 1861-1865 as War Democrat.  Governor of Connecticut, 1867-1870.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FARNSWORTH, John Franklin, b. 1820, Chicago, Illinois, Union soldier.  Colonel, 8th Illinois Cavalry, later commissioned Brigadier General, 1861-1862.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois, 1857-1861, 1863-1873.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FRANK, Augustus, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

GARFIELD, James Abram, 1831-1881, statesman, lawyer, Union general, abolitionist.  Lt. Colonel, 42nd Regiment Ohio Volunteers.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio’s 19th District, 1863-1880.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Twentieth President of the United States, March 4, 1881 to September 19, 1881.  Garfield was a strong supporter of the Union and was opposed to slavery.  Garfield was a member of the Radical wing of the Republican Party.  Garfield supported Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.

 

GASSON, J., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

GOOCH, Daniel W., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

GRINNELL, Josiah Bushnell, 1821-1891, New Haven, Vermont, abolitionist.  Republican Party co-founder.  Theologian.  Founded First Congregational Church, Washington, DC, in 1851.  Founded town of Grinnell, Iowa.  Iowa State Senator, 1856-1860.  Congressman 1863-1867.  Supported radical abolitionist John Brown.  Advocated for use of colored troops in the Union Army.  As Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

GRISWOLD, John A., 1818-1872, manufacturer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York.  Mayor of Troy, NY, 1850.  Raised regiment for Union Army.  Supervised building of U.S.S. Monitor, the first ironclad Union Navy ship.  Elected U.S. Congressman 1862, served 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HALE, James T., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HERRICK, Anson, 1812-1868, journalist.  Democratic Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Served in Congress December 1863-March 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HIGBY, William, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HOOPER, Samuel, 1808-1875, merchant.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts.  Elected in 1860, served until his death in 1875.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

HOTCHKISS, Giles, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HUBBARD, Asahel W., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HUBBARD, John H., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HULBURD, Calvin T., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HUTCHINS, Wells A., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

INGERSOLL, Ebon C., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

JENCKES, Thomas Allen, 1818-1875, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Rhode Island.  Served as Congressman from 1863-1871.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

KASSON, John Adams, 1822-1910, lawyer, diplomat, anti-slavery activist.  Kasson was a delegate to the Republican national convention in 1860.  He helped draft the Republican Party platform, which included strong anti-slavery planks.  In 1861, President Lincoln appointed Kasson First Assistant U.S. Postmaster General.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Iowa.  Served as a Congressman from 1863-1867, 1873-1877, 1881-1884.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

KELLEY, William Darrah, 1814-1890, lawyer, jurist, abolitionist.  Kelley was a member of the anti-slavery faction of the Democratic Party and later a founding member of the Republican Party.  Kelley was noted for a speech he gave in 1854 against slavery entitled, “Slavery in the Territories.”  This speech was widely read and published.  After the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, Kelley resigned from the Democratic Party and became a founding member of the anti-slavery Republican Party.  He was also a friend of Abraham Lincoln.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.  Elected in 1860.  Called the “Father of the House.”  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Kelley also was a strong advocate for the utilization of African American soldiers in the Union Army.  After the war, he also advocated for suffrage from African Americans and introduced a bill, which became law, giving African Americans the right to vote in the District of Columbia.

 

KELLOGG, Francis W., 1810-1878, Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Served in Congress 1859-1865, 1868-1869.  Raised six regiments of cavalry for the Union Army.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

KELLOGG, Orlando, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

KING, Austin Augustus, 1801-1870, statesman, lawyer, jurist.  Democratic Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri.  Served as Congressman December 1863-March 1865, and as Governor of Missouri.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

KNOX, Samuel, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

LITTLEJOHN, DeWitt C., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

LOAN, Benjamin F., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

LONGYEAR, John Westley, 1820-1875, jurist, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Michigan.  Served in Congress 1863-1867.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MARVIN, James M., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MCALLISTER, Archibald, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MCBRIDE, John R., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MCCLURG, Joseph Washington, b. 1818, lawyer, legislator, soldier.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri.  Served in Congress December 1863-1868.  Elected Governor of Missouri in 1868.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MILLER, Samuel F., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MOORHEAD, James Kennedy, 1806-1884.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  In Congress from December 1859-March, 1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MORRILL, Justin Smith, 1810-1898.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Vermont.  Morrill was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from Vermont’s 2nd District in 1854.  Served as Congressman December 1855-March 1867.  U.S. Senator 1867-1898.  Morrill was one of the founding members of the anti-slavery Republican Party.  He sponsored the Morrill Act, which was also the Land Grant College Act, which was signed into law by Lincoln in 1862.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

MORRIS, Daniel, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MYERS, Amos, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MYERS, Leonard, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

NELSON, Homer A., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

NORTON, Jesse O., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

O’NEILL, Charles, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ODELL, Moses Fowler, 1818-1866, Brooklyn, New York, statesman.  Fusion Democratic, later War Democratic, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York.  Congressman 1861-1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ORTH, Godlove Stoner, 1817-1882, lawyer, diplomat.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  U.S. Congressman December 1863-March 1871, December 1873-March 1875.  Voted for Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the Constitution, abolishing slavery, establishing citizenship, due process and equal protections, and establishing voting rights for African Americans.

 

PATTERSON, James Willis, b. 1823, educator.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Hampshire.  Congressman 1863-1867.  Elected U.S. Senator 1866-1873.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

PERHAM, Sidney, b. 1819.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maine.  Served in Congress 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Governor of Maine 1871-1874. 

 

PIKE, Frederick Augustus, 1817-1886, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maine.  Member of Congress 1861-1869.  Active in emancipation of slaves.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

POMEROY, Theodore Medad, b. 1824, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York.  Re-elected Congressman from March 1861-March 1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

PRICE, Hiram, b. 1814.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Iowa.  Congressman 1863-1869, 1876-1881.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

RANDALL, William H., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

RICE, Alexander Hamilton, b. 1818.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Boston, Massachusetts.  Four term Congressman, December 1859-March 1867.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

RICE, John H., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ROLLINS, Edward Henry, b. 1824.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Hampshire.  Served in Congress July 1861-March 1867.  U.S. Senator 1877-1883.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

ROLLINS, James Sidney, 1812-1888, lawyer, soldier.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri.  After Mexican War (1846), opposed extension of slavery into the new territories.  Served as Congressman July 1861-March 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SCHENCK, Robert Cumming, b. 1809, diplomat, Union general.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Three-term Whig Representative to Congress, December 1843-March 1851.  Re-elected December 1863, 1864, 1866, 1868.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SCOFIELD, Glenni William, b. 1817, lawyer, jurist.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.  Congressman December 1863-March 1875.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SHANNON, Thomas B., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SLOAN, Ithamar C., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SMITH, Green C., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SMITHERS, Nathaniel, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SPALDING, Rufus Paine, 1798-1886, jurist.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio.  One of the organizers of the Republican Party.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

STEELE, John B., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

STEVENS, Thaddeus, 1792-1868, statesman, lawyer, abolitionist leader.  Anti-slavery leader in U.S. House of Representatives.  He represented Pennsylvania’s 8th District from 1849 to 1853.  He was a member of the House from Pennsylvania’s 9th District from March 4, 1859, until his death on August 11, 1868.  As member of Whig Party and leader of the radical Republican Party, urged Lincoln to issue Emancipation Proclamation.  Led fight to pass Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution, abolishing slavery and establishing citizenship, due process and equal protections for African Americans. 

 

THAYER, Martin Russell, b. 1819, jurist.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.  In Congress 1862-1867.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

THOMAS, Francis, 1799-1876, lawyer, statesman.  Opposed slavery in Maryland State Constitutional Convention of 1850.  Governor of Maryland, 1841-1844.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maryland.  In Congress December 1831-March 1841 and 1861-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

TRACY, Henry W., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

UPSON, Charles, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

VAN VALKENBURGH, Robert Bruce, 1821-1888, lawyer, Union colonel.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York.  Member of Congress 1861-1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WASHBURN, William Barrett, 1820-1887, businessman. Reppublican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts.  U.S. Senator.  Served in Congress 1863-1872, and U.S. Senate May 1874-March 1875.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WASHBURNE, Elihu Benjamin, 1816-1887, statesman, lawyer, ambassador, political leader, anti-slavery activist.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois.  Congressman from December 1853 through March 1869.  Called “Father of the House.”  Washburne was an early member of the Republican Party and a leader of the Radical Republican faction.  He supported racial equality for African Americans.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  He served on the Joint Committee on Reconstruction, which wrote the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  He later served as Minister to France from 1869 to 1877.

 

WEBSTER, Edwin H., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WHALEY, Kellian V., Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WHEELER, Ezra, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WILDER, A. Carter, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WILLIAMS, Thomas, 1806-1872, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.  Served as Congressman from December 1863 through 1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WILSON, James F., b. 1838, lawyer.  Ohio State Senator.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio.  Elected to Congress in 1861.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WINDOM, William, b. 1827, lawyer.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Minnesota.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Served in U.S. Congress 1859-1869, U.S. Senate, 1870-1877. 

 

WOODBRIDGE, Frederick Enoch, 1819-1888, lawyer.  Vermont State Senator.  Republican Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Vermont.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Served in U.S. Congress December 1863 to March 1869.

 

WORTHINGTON, Henry, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

YEAMAN, George Helm, b. 1829, lawyer, jurist, diplomat, writer.  Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. Elected to Congress 1862, served until March 1865.

 



Senators Who Signed the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution

 

See entries in alphabetical list (Abolitionists and Anti-Slavery Activists) for biographies.

 

ANTHONY, Henry Bowen, 1815-1884, Republican, statesman, newspaper editor, Governor of Rhode Island, U.S. Senator 1859-1884, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

BROWN, Benjamin Gratz, 1826-1885, lawyer, soldier.  Anti-slavery activist in Missouri legislature from 1852-1859.  Opposed pro-slavery party.  Commanded a regiment and later a brigade of Missouri State Militia.  U.S. Senator 1863-1867, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CHANDLER, Zachariah, 1813-1879, statesman, U.S. Senator 1857-.  Active in Underground Railroad in Detroit area.  Helped organize the Republican Party in 1854.  Introduced Confiscation Bill in Senate, July 1861.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CLARK, Daniel, b. 1809, lawyer, U.S. Senator from New Hampshire, ardent supporter of the Union.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

COLLAMER, Jacob, 1791-1865, lawyer, jurist.  U.S. Senator from Vermont.  U.S. Senator, 1854-1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

CONNESS, John, b. 1821.  Union Republican U.S. Senator from California.  U.S. Senator 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

COWAN, Edgar, 1815-1885, lawyer.  U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania 1861-1867.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DIXON, James, 1814-1873, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Congressman and U.S. Senator representing Connecticut.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

DOOLITTLE, James Rood, b. 1815, lawyer, jurist.  Democratic and Republican U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, 1857-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FESSENDEN, William Pitt, 1806-1869, lawyer, statesman, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury.  Elected to Congress in 1840 as a member of the Whig Party opposing slavery.  Moved to repeal rule that excluded anti-slavery petitions before Congress.  Strong leader in Congress opposing slavery.  Elected to the Senate in 1854.  He opposed the Kansas-Nebraska bill as well as the Dred Scott Supreme Court Case.  Co-founder of the Republican Party.  Prominent leader of the anti-slavery faction of the Republican Party in the U.S. Senate.  As U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FOOT, Solomon, U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

FOSTER, Lafayette Sabine, 1806-1880, statesman, Connecticut State Representative, Mayor of Norwich, Connecticut, U.S. Senator 1854-?, Republican Party, opposed to slavery.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

GRIMES, James Wilson, 1816-1872, statesman, lawyer.  U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Governor of Iowa, 1854-1858.  Supported by Whigs and Free Soil Democrats.  Elected as Republican Senator in 1859.  Re-elected 1865.

 

HALE, John Parker, 1806-1873, New Hampshire, statesman, diplomat, U.S. Congressman, U.S. Senator.  Member of the anti-slavery Liberty Party.  President of the Free Soil Party, 1852.  Elected to Congress in 1842, he opposed the 21st Rule suppressing anti-slavery petition to Congress.  Refused to support the annexation of Texas in 1845.  Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1846, he was the first distinctively anti-slavery Senator.  Adamantly opposed slavery for his 16 years in office.  In 1851, served as Counsel in the trial of rescued slave Shadrach.  In 1852, he was nominated for President of the United States, representing the Free Soil Party.  As U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

HARLAN, James, 1820-1899, statesman.  Whig U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Elected Senator in 1855 representing Iowa.  Re-elected, served until 1865, when appointed Secretary of the Interior by President Lincoln.  Re-elected to Senate in 1866, served until 1873. 

 

HARRIS, Ira, 1802-1875, jurist.  Republican U.S. Senator from New York.  Served as U.S. Senator from 1861-1867.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HENDERSON, John Brooks, b. 1826, lawyer.  U.S. Senator from Missouri.  Appointed Senator in 1863.  Member of the Republican Party.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HOWARD, Jacob Merritt, 1805-1871, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Senator from Michigan.  U.S. Congressman 1841-1843.  Founding member of Republican Party in 1854.  Elected in 1862.  Served until March 1871.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

HOWE, Timothy Otis, 1816-1883, lawyer, jurist.  Republican U.S. Senator from Wisconsin.  Elected 1861, served until 1879.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

JOHNSON, Reverdy, 1796-1876, lawyer, diplomat, statesman, U.S. Senator, opposed annexing territories acquired in the war with Mexico.  Strongly opposed the extension of slavery into the new territories.  Ardent supporter of the Union.  Believed that African Americans should be recruited into the Union Army and as a result should gain their emancipation.

 

LANE, Henry Smith.  U.S. Senator.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

LANE, James Henry, 1814-1866, lawyer, soldier.  U.S. Senator from Kansas.  Elected Senator in 1861 and in 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MORGAN, Edwin Dennison, 1811-1883, merchant, soldier, statesman.  Member of the Whig Party, Anti-Slavery Faction.  Republican U.S. Senator from New York.  Chairman of the Republican National Committee, 1856-1864.  Governor of New York, 1858-1862.  Commissioned Major General of Volunteers, he raised 223,000 troops for the Union Army.  U.S. Senator, 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

MORRILL, Lot Myrick, 1813-1883, lawyer, temperance advocate, opposed slavery, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, 1876, two-term Republican Governor of Maine, U.S. Senator, 1861-1869.  Joined the Republican Party due to his position against slavery and its expansion into the new territories.  Supported the bill in Congress that emancipated slaves in Washington, DC.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. After the war, he supported higher education for African Americans.  In 1866, he supported voting rights for African Americans in Washington, DC.

 

NESMITH, James Willis, 1820-1885, jurist, lawyer.  U.S. Senator from Oregon.  U.S. Senator 1861-1867.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

POMEROY, Samuel Clarke. Republican U.S. Senator from Kansas.  Active in Kansas “Free State” convention of 1859.  U.S. Senator 1861-1873.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

RAMSEY, Alexander, b. 1815.  Republican U.S. Senator from Minnesota.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  U.S. Congressman (Whig Party) elected 1842, serving until 1847, from Pennsylvania.  First Territorial Governor of Minnesota, 1849-1853.  Governor of state 1860-1863.  Elected U.S. Senator 1863, serving until 1875.  Appointed Secretary of War in 1879. 

 

SHERMAN, John, statesman.  Whig U.S. Congressman, 1855.  Republican U.S. Senator.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Brother of Union commander, General William T. Sherman. 

 

SPRAGUE, William, b. 1830, Union general.  Governor of Rhode Island, 1860-1863.  Republican U.S. Senator from Rhode Island.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

SUMNER, Charles, 1811-1861, statesman, lawyer, writer, editor, educator, abolitionist leader.  U.S. Senator, voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

TEN EYCK, John Conover, 1814-1879, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Senator from New Jersey.  Was a Whig until 1856.  Joined Republican Party in 1856.  Chosen Senator in 1859.  Served until March 1865.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

TRUMBULL, Lyman, lawyer, U.S. Senator.  Trumbull was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1854, but was appointed by the state legislature to serve in the U.S. Senate.  He served in the Senate as a member of the Republican Party from 1855 to 1873.  As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Trumbull co-wrote the Thirteenth Amendment.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

VAN WINKLE, Peter G., 1808-1872.  U.S. Senator from newly-formed State of West Virginia.  Served as Senator 1863-1869.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WADE, Benjamin Franklin, 1800-1878, lawyer, jurist, strong and active opponent of slavery.  In 1839, opposed enactment of stronger fugitive slave law, later calling for its repeal.  U.S. Senator, March 1851-1869.  Opposed Kansas-Nebraska Bill of 1854.  Reported bill to abolish slavery in U.S. Territories in 1862.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery. 

 

WILKINSON, Morton Smith, b. 1819, lawyer.  Republican U.S. Senator from Minnesota.  U.S. Senator from 1859-1865.  U.S. Congressman from March 1869-March 1871.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WILLEY, Waitman Thomas, b. 1811, lawyer.  U.S. Senator from Virginia (1861), later West Virginia (1863).  Served in Senate until March 1871.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.

 

WILSON, Henry, 1812-1875, statesman, abolitionist leader, statesman.  Massachusetts state senator.  U.S. Senator.  Voted for Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery.  Member, Free Soil Party.  Founder of the Republican Party.  Strong opponent of slavery.  Became abolitionist in 1830s.  Opposed annexation of Texas as a slave state.  Bought and edited Boston Republican newspaper.