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Gerrit Smith
Correspondence of Hammond and Frothingham Biographies


Charles A. Hammond was an acquaintance of Gerrit Smith and many of his contemporaries. For a time he served as minister of Smith's Free Church of Peterboro. There are frequent passages in which he quotes from his own conversations with Smith, or from speeches at which he was among the audience. It does not appear that Hammond had access to Smith's papers, and rather that he is paraphrasing Frothingham (who did have access) in his references to Smith's journals and other publications.

Following are four examples that are representative of the correspondence in texts between Frothingham's and Hammond's volumes.


Frothingham (1878) Hammond (1908)
Through his influence at Washington, a custom house was established at Oswego. (Page 32) Through his influence at Washington, a custom house was established at Oswego. (Page 18)
The business agent in Oswego, who was in his service forty three years, cannot recall a single unpleasant passage, or a single unkind word written or spoken to him in all that period of time. (Page 32) His business agent in Oswego, John B. Edwards, with whom the writer formed a very pleasant acquaintance, and who was one of Oswego's first citizens, being president of a bank, and very highly esteemed, declared that while in Mr. Smith's service forty three years, not an unkind word was either spoken or written to him by his great hearted employer. (Page 19)
(Regarding Slavery) The first wave of moral indignation, started in Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina Maryland by Benjamin Lundy, soon reinforced by William Lloyd Garrison, did not reach his quiet village home. (Page 161) The agitation against slavery begun by the Quaker Benjamin Lundy in the Northern slave states, and afterward taken up by William Lloyd Garrison, did not at first reach Peterboro. (Page 25)
(Regarding Smith's portrayal of Andrew Jackson) Mr. Jackson is condemned as the incarnation of the violent, military, usurping spirit so radically inconsistent with republican institutions. (Page 162) Andrew Jackson is condemned as the incarnation of the violent military spirit so radically inconsistent with republican institutions. (Page 26)

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