Henry Highland Garnet

Born a slave in Kent County, Maryland, Henry Highland Garnet (1815-82) fled north with his parents in 1824. He attended the African Free School in New York City, the Noyes Academy in Canaan, New Hampshire, and the Oneida Institute in Whitesboro, New York. Garnet was one of the founders of the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society and a stump speaker for the Liberty party. Licensed to preach by the Presbytery of Troy in 1842, Garnet went to Jamaica in 1852 as a missionary of the United Presbyterian Church of Scotland. An early proponent of black emigration to Africa and founder of the African Civilization Society, Garnet also sanctioned slave uprisings in an address before a National Negro Convention in Buffalo, New York, in August 1843. After the Civil War, Garnet was president of Avery College in Pittsburgh and United States minister to Liberia (1881-82). Joel Schor, Henry Highland Garnet: A Voice of Black Radicalism in the Nineteenth Century (Westport, Conn., 1977); Dorothy Sterling, ed., Speak Out in Thunder Tones: Letters and Other Writings by Black Northerners, 1787-1865 (Garden City, N.Y., 1973), 376; Quarles, Black Abolitionists, 68, 185, 216-17, 226-27.

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