The Letters of John Greenleaf Whittier
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Author(s): John Greenleaf Whittier,
ISBN-10: 0674528301
ISBN-13: 9780674528307
Published: 1975
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Pages: 2080
Biography & Autobiography

These letters of a man deeply concerned about his country, directly involved in political action, and torn, as the Civil War approached, by the conflict between his abolitionist zeal and his Quaker pacifism–letters here collected for the first time and many of them hitherto unpublished–shatter the stereotype of Whittier as “the good gray poet.” The many letters to such figures as John Quincy Adams, Charles Sumner, and William Lloyd Garrison form a detailed record of the abolitionist movement from its inception to its merging with the Free Soil party in the 1850s. The first two volumes reproduce all the extant letters from 1828 to 1860, with full annotations. The last volume is selective, excluding several thousand perfunctory items and including only the historically or biographically interesting letters of the last three decades of the poet’s life.

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