Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 65,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Pennington, J.W.C. [Runaway slave]

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC09088 Author/Creator: Pennington, J.W.C. Place Written: s.l. Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 29 April 1851 Pagination: 1

Summary of Content: A runaway slave in his own right, Pennington, while avoiding arrest in Liverpool, England, comments on the situation here in American and a fugitive slave case: "...My constant trouble of mind is the evils now pressing on my nation and people. What the end is to no eye human can forsee...[O]f the termination of the last Boston case - Thomas Sims has been given over to his claimant and has been taken back into Slavery. These cases are enough to break one's heart. It is difficult to see how the enormous evil and crime of Slavery can be carried to a greater extent. The whole land is full of blood...'Lord give us help from trouble'."

People:

Historical Era: National Expansion and Reform, 1815-1860

Keywords/Subjects: Slavery, Runaway Slave, Fugitive Slave Act, African American History, Global History and US Foreign Policy, Slave Life

Sub Era: Slavery & Anti-slavery The Crisis of the 1850's