Rockport Shows its Support for Equal Rights, 1845

Needless to say, this is not a postcard. Rather, it is a scan of a Dec. 22, 1845, letter signed, “B.F.A. on behalf of The Rockport Social Circle.” The letter was delivered at Faneuil Hall, Boston, to Maria W. Chapman, a prominent American abolitionist who served on the executive committee of the American Anti-Slavery Society from 1839 to 1842 and who was editor of the anti-slavery journal, Non-Resistant.

The letter says:

We embrace this opportunity to show our respect for the Bold Defenders of Equal Rights, and our willingness to assist in the Anti-slavery movement. We should be happy to occupy a humble place in the ‘Old Cradle of Liberty’ but fate decides otherwise; accept then our best wishes that surrounding and awaiting events may lead to a Happy close of 1845; also a happy Welcome to 1846.

Yours, for Justice and Equal Rights
On behalf of
The Rockport Social Circle

The line that begins, We should be happy …” makes it sound as if the writer is expressing regret for the group’s inability to attend an event. Chapman was known for organizing an annual Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Fair to raise money for abolitionist efforts, so perhaps the letter is in reference to one of these.

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