Rose Street Meeting, New York City, November 11, 1855
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120 Rose Street Meeting, 1855 13. Unfortunately, LM kept few of her incoming letters (Palmer, xxxi). 14. Emma Robinson Coe (1815–1902), women’s rights lecturer in Michigan and Ohio (Gordon, 1:234; 6:190). 15. Keeler, secretary of the Ohio State Temperance Alliance, offered a resolution disapproving the conduct at the World’s Temperance Convention of Samuel Fenton Cary (1814–1900), a leader of the Ohio temperance movement, and known as “General” for his service as paymaster general of Ohio. Keeler’s resolution also expressed gratitude for Cary’s “self-sacrificing devotion to the cause of Temperance.” At the September Temperance Convention, Cary had offered a resolution that the platform was “not the appropriate sphere of woman.” At the Cleveland convention, Antoinette Brown recounted the refusal of the Temperance Convention to allow her to speak. She read several paragraphs from an Ohio temperance publication written by Cary implying that she had “made an unwomanly entrance into the convention, and upon the platform itself.” Brown further stated, “measures [were] taken to browbeat the convention into receiving Miss Brown” (Lender, Dictionary, 84–86; New York Times, September 7, 1853; Proceedings, 115–16, 146). 16. The convention “almost unanimously” resolved to table Keeler’s resolution, not wishing to “characterize, or endorse, Gen. Cary’s conduct, or that of any other man” (Proceedings, 149). 17. When Edwin H. Nevin (1814–89), Presbyterian clergyman from Cleveland, asked permission to refute assertions from British clergyman Joseph Barker, he encountered several objections, but LM moved that he be allowed to speak. In the ensuing exchange Nevin said, “Only one word has fallen from Woman in this convention, to which I can take exceptions, and that fell from the lips of a lady whom I have venerated from my childhood—it was, that the pulpit was the castle of cowards” (WLG Letters, 4:170–71; Proceedings, 165–66). 18. British clergyman Joseph Barker (1806–75), who had recently moved to the United States, had complained about the “priesthood’s” criticisms of the women’s rights movement . He said these clergymen claimed that the Scriptures were “against the Woman’s Rights Movement,” and further characterized the movement as based on “infidel principles .” Barker concluded that he had “come to regard the term Infidel, as the most honorable that can be given to a man” and that all he had spoken was meant “to subserve the cause of freedom and the elevation of woman.” With “Bible in hand,” Nevins “launched out into an irrelevant eulogium upon ‘his Christ’” and then characterized Barker as “an Infidel from foreign shores, who had come to teach Americans Christianity!” As he concluded his remarks (which were not fully reported), Nevins met with objections both from Barker and WLG (Proceedings, 135–36, 145–46, 165–66; WLG Letters, 4:170–71). 19. When Nevin expressed doubts “as [to] the belief of Mr. Barker, in the doctrines of Christ . . . Mr. Barker repeatedly corrected him, but Dr. Nevin very ingeniously continued to re-affirm them in another shape” (Proceedings, 165–66). 20. In her final address to the convention, Brown stated that she believed that the Bible was God’s “revelation of his will to man,” as opposed to Barker’s opinion that the Bible was not “the special word of God.” She declared that each member had to decide “for himself and herself. The convention is committed to neither” (Proceedings, 150). Rose Street Meeting, New York City, November 11, 1855 Denouncing the still prevailing King and Priestcraft, Mrs. MOTT had the courage to express what many repress, and declare that Protestantism was only a modification, not a thorough reform of a degrading superstition. In glowing terms she claimed to plant her platform where Christ and St. John had erected it for Humanity, but she said she should separate herself from the Priests and Rose Street Meeting, 1855 121 their tools who have degraded that platform into worldly ecclesiastical business establishments. Gathering hope from all the bright features of the progressive symptoms of practical Christianity around us, Mrs. MOTT proved that all the leading reforms of the age—Anti-Slavery, Temperance, and all the benevolent and philanthropic movements of the day—have sprung, not by the dogmas propounded by either the Church of Rome, or England, or any other material organization , but from the individual soul of man, from the Divinity rising within man—from the Divinity of which Christ was the most celestial exemplar. In the course of her address, which, begun in somewhat impassive...