In the first year of publication of the Liberator, several states took action to suppress its distribution, and actions included threats on Garrison’s life. From Henry Mayer’s biography, All on Fire, here are some of those early actions. In 1831 the town of Georgetown, in the District of Columbia passed a law prohibiting Negroes from taking copies of the paper out of the post office, under penalty of a $20 fine and thirty days in jail; if the fines were not paid, the threat was of being sold into slavery. — In Raleigh, North Carolina, a grand jury indicted Garrison and Knapp for distributing “incendiary matter”. — In Columbia, South Carolina, a vigilance association posted a reward of $1500 for apprehension of any white person distributing the paper. (Garrison quipped that it was “a pretty liberal sum, but we think we are worth more.) — In Georgia, the legislature offered a $5,000 reward for anyone who would arrest Garrison and bring to Georgia for trial.
Be First to Comment