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Back to Africa

Back to Africa : Benjamin Coates and the Colonization Movement in America, 1848-1880 - hardcover

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Benjamin Coates was one of the best-known white supporters of African colonization in nineteenth-century America. A Quaker businessman from Philadelphia and a sometime officer of the Pennsylvania Abolition Society, he was committed to helping black Americans relocate to West Africa. This put him at the center of a discourse with abolitionists at home and abroad, including such leading thinkers as Joseph Jenkins Roberts, Mary Ann Shadd Cary, Henry Highland Garnet, Frederick Douglass, Alexander Crummell, George L. Stearns, and William Coppinger. Creative and restless, cantankerous and charismatic, these men and women dominated the struggle to end slavery and to achieve respect for African Americans. At the heart of the volume is a collection of over 150 recently recovered letters, either written by Coates or addressed to him between 1848 and 1880. Lapsansky and Bacon, who led a team of young scholars that annotated the letters, have provided a far-reaching essay that places them in context. 

Published by Penn State University Press, 2007


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