But if Garrison, Phillips and Sumner and Mrs Stowe were to be the rhapsodists of the long emancipation struggle, Whittier was its foreordained poet-seer.
Reckless of political expediency, Sumner moved that the Fugitive Slave Act be forthwith repealed; and for more than three hours he denounced it as a violation of the constitution, an affront to the public conscience, and an offence against the divine law.
SIR HENRY JAMES SUMNER MAINE (1822-1888), English comparative jurist and historian, son of Dr James Maine, of Kelso, Roxburghshire, was born on the 15th of August 1822.
In 1862 he succeeded John Bird Sumner as archbishop of Canterbury.
CHARLES RICHARD SUMNER (1790-1874), English bishop, was born at Kenilworth on the 22nd of November 1790, and was educated at Eton and at Trinity College, Cambridge.
A deadlock of more than three months ensued, finally resulting in the election (April 24) of Sumner by a majority of a single vote.
Wished to appoint him canon of Windsor, but the prime minister, Lord Liverpool, objected; Sumner received instead a royal chaplaincy and librarianship, and other preferments quickly followed, till in 1826 he was consecrated bishop of Llandaff and in 1827 bishop of Winchester.
In the impeachment proceedings against Johnson, Sumner was one of the president's most implacable assailants.
That brutal assault cost Sumner three years of heroic struggle to restore his shattered health - years during which Massachusetts loyally re-elected him, in the belief that in the Senate chamber his vacant chair was the most eloquent pleader for free speech and resistance to slavery.
The credit or the blame for imposing equal suffrage rights for negroes upon the Southern states as a condition of Reconstruction must rest with Charles Sumner more than with any other one man Heedless of the teachings of science as to the slow evolution of any race's capacity for self-government, he insisted on putting the ballot forthwith into the hands of even the most ignorant blacks, lest their rights be taken from them by their former masters and the fruits of the war be lost.