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1856 "The Nature and Power of the Slave States" Imprint by Josiah Quincy re: Power the Slave States over the Free States

June 5, 1856-Dated, "The Nature and Power of the Slave States" Imprint, by Josiah Quincy III (1772-1864), of Quincy, Massachusetts, Very Fine.

This is an original imprint fully titled, "Address Illustrative of the The Nature and Power of the Slave States, and the Duties of the Free States", 5.75" x 9", 32 pages, Choice Very Fine. Original paper covers intact. Minor edge chipping to front cover. Address speaks to the power the Slave States had and the timidity of the Free States. Josiah Quincy III was a U.S. educator and political figure. He was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Mayor of Boston, and President of Harvard University. The historic "Quincy Market" in downtown Boston is named in his honor.

Additional Information:

Josiah Quincy III - In 1798 Quincy was appointed Boston Town Orator by the Board of Selectmen, and in 1800 he was elected to the School Committee. Quincy became a leader of the Federalist party in Massachusetts, was an unsuccessful candidate for the United States House of Representatives in 1800, and served in the Massachusetts Senate in 1804"5. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1803.

From 1805 to 1813, he was a member of the United States House of Representatives where he was one of the small Federalist minority.

He attempted to secure the exemption of fishing vessels from the Embargo Act, urged the strengthening of the United States Navy, and vigorously opposed the admittance of Louisiana as a state in 1811. In this last matter he stated as his "deliberate opinion, that if this bill passes, the bonds of this Union are virtually dissolved; that the States that compose it are free from their moral obligations; and that, as it will be the right of all, so it will be the duty of some, to prepare definitely for a separation, amicably if they can, violently if they must." This was probably the first assertion of the right of secession on the floor of Congress. Quincy left Congress because he saw that the Federalist opposition was useless. In 1812, Quincy was a founding member of the American Antiquarian Society.

Josiah Quincy, oil on canvas, Gilbert Stuart, 1824"1825. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

After leaving Congress, Quincy was a member of the Massachusetts Senate until 1820. In 1821"22 he was a member and speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Quincy resigned from the legislature to become judge of the municipal court of Boston.

Quincy was a candidate for Mayor of Boston in Boston's first election under a city charter, held on April 8, 1822. The votes of this first election were evenly split between Quincy and Harrison Gray Otis, with a few votes to others. Neither Quincy nor Otis had a majority, so neither was elected. They both withdrew their candidacies, and John Phillips was elected Boston's first mayor.

In 1823 Quincy was elected as the second mayor of Boston; he served six-one year terms from 1823 to 1828. During his terms as mayor Quincy Market was built, the fire and police departments were reorganized, and the city's care of the poor was systematized.

From 1829 to 1845, he was President of Harvard University, of which he had been an overseer since 1810, when the board was reorganized. At a time when college presidents were chosen for their intellectual achievements, Quincy's past experience as a politician and not an academic made him an unusual choice. He has been called "the great organizer of the university." He gave an elective (or "voluntary") system an elaborate trial; introduced a system of marking (on the scale of 8) on which college rank and honors, formerly rather carelessly assigned, were based; first used courts of law to punish students who destroyed or damaged college property; and helped to reform the finances of the university.

During his term Dane Hall (for law) was dedicated, Gore Hall was built, and the Astronomical Observatory was equipped. Quincy House, one of the university's twelve upperclass residential houses, is named for him.

In 1856 Quincy gave an address concerning the then upcoming American presidential election. Quincy endorsed the Republican candidate, John C. Fremont, and denounced how "for more than fifty years, the Slave States have subjugated the Free States." This speech is cited in "Negro President": Jefferson and the Slave Power, by Garry Wills.

His last years were spent principally on his farm in Quincy, Massachusetts, where he died on July 1, 1864
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