Men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less. The Revolution
Women's participation in all the major reform movements may be traced through an abundance of material in the division, chiefly
from the nineteenth century, in a variety of formats, including magazines and newspapers, books, pamphlets, scrapbooks, and
broadsides, many of which complement collections of personal papers held in the Manuscript Division.
Playing a significant role in the antislavery movement, women developed skills and expertise that they would apply to other
reform efforts. Lydia Maria Child's Appeal in Favor of That Class of Americans Called Africans (Boston: Allen and Ticknor, 1833; E449.C53)
not only presents the first comprehensive synthesis of facts and arguments refuting myths of black intellectual inferiority
but also is credited with bringing many women into the antislavery movement and broadening the male leadership.
Angelina Grimké (1805-1879), who had freed her slaves and left the South, became an abolitionist lecturer and organizer.
Her Appeal to the Christian Women of the South (New York, American Anti-Slavery Society, 1836; E185 .A254 G:117 Afr Am Pam) is extremely rare because so many of the copies were destroyed by Southern postmasters.
Anti-slavery fair, [ca. 1835]. Printed Ephemera Collection; Portfolio 248, Folder 7. Rare Book and Special Collections Division.
Women's innovative organizational efforts can be followed in reports of the Proceedings of the Anti-Slavery Convention of American Women (Philadelphia: 1837-39: E449.A621/E449.A6234/ E449.A6235) , an early attempt at interracial cooperation. Maria Weston Chapman (1806-1885), who was active in the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery
Society and American Anti-Slavery Society, organized antislavery fairs and edited the first successful antislavery annual
book, The Liberty Bell (Boston: American Anti-Slavery Society, 1839-58; E449.L69) , to raise funds for the cause.