Digital Commonwealth

Letter from James Miller M'Kim, Anti-Slavery Office, Phil[adelphi]a, [Penn.], to Maria Weston Chapman, Nov. 19th, [1857]

Item Information

Holograph, signed.
James Miller M'Kim tells with indignation about Lippincott's editions of the Bible and the prayer book in which the frontispiece, Ary Scheffer's Christus Consolator, has the figure of the black slave in chains is left out. The publisher "is said to have had the sanction, if not the advice, of a distinguished prelate in the Episcopal Church; a thing by no means incredible." M'Kim cites cases of truckling to southern prejudice on the part of the American Sunday School Union and the American Tract Society. M'Kim hopes that Maria Weston Chapman will send Mr. Scheffer both the Bible and the prayer book. M'Kim again declines to write for the Liberty Bell. M'Kim explains that he cannot write of the late slave insurrections in the south because there has been none. M'Kim said: "The last that occurred was that of Nat Turner in Southampton, Va., twenty six years ago." He explains that the slaves' hope for the election of Colonel Fremont was roused by the politicians who accused him of favoring abolition. There were record breaking numbers of slaves' escapes. "Flight not fight is the slaves' ultima ratio." Fifty passed through the hands of "our vigilance committee" in the last fortnight. M'Kim tells of some heroic instances of escape. The escaping slaves "are aided by free men & free white men. Nine out of ten of all who came to us are brought or aided hither by southern men." He refers to (Hinton Rowan Helper) the author of The Impending Crisis of the South.
The greater part of this letter was printed in the Liberty Bell for 1858, p.325-327, under the title, "The Slave's Ultima Ratio. Letter."
Call #:
Ms.A.9.2 v.32, p.99