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The passage of the constitutional amendment, abolishing slavery, was celebrated in this town on Thursday, by the ringing of bells and a mass meeting in Washington Hall, in the evening. At the mass meeting, Hon. George Grennell was chosen President; Henry W. Clapp, N.E. Russell, Ansel Phelps, David Aiken, Richard E. Field, Matthew Chapman, Theodore Leonard, Lewis Merriam, Alfred R. Field, Samuel H. Reed, Almon Brainard, Frederick G. Smith, Lewis Smead, Rufus Howland, Hervey C. Newton and Salem Rich, Vice Presidents; S. S. Eastman, C. C. Conant, H. A. Buddington and Noah S. Wells, Secretaries. The Hall was well filled and and speeches were made by George Grennell, Whiting Griswold, D.W. Alvord, Rev. A. Dean, Ansel Phelps, Rev. D. H. Rogan and Charles Munn. Col. Munn wished to have it understood that he had always been a democrat and an anti slavery man. H. S. Ford's choir of singers were present and sung the "National Hymn" and "America" in an excellent style. On taking the chair, Judge Grennell said, substantially-

Citizens:- It is a sight worthy the admiration of angels and men, to see a great people rushing to their halls of Liberty and Temples of God to signalize great events for freedom and humanity. We are here, not delegated by choice; no. we are here, moved and awakened by that divine spirit that forms all of our best and noblest purposes; a voluntary impulse brings us together; but a rational impulse. Chosen? premeditated? No, no; the process were too slow. The fire that glows and burns in our hearts is impatient of repression. Abraham Lincoln presents a new claim to the reverence of his countrymen. We stand here to rejoice and shout onward the begun march of true liberty for the white and the black race- freedom eternal to the slave! How impatiently have we waited and prayed for that act of Congress, sanctioned by our noble and brave President, in amendment of the Constitution- abolishing the deadly plague of slavery from the Republican land! It is done; - so far so good;- will you respond? Will you anticipate the action of your Legislature? Yes, with cheers and shouts of joy and confidence. The act will be consummated, citizens. Where do we gather to hail this glorious measure, to put the stamp of reprobation on slavery? We come spontaneously to this great hall, baptized to the name of Washington- the Father of his country. He, an anti slavery man, if now on earth, wou'd do what Abraham Lincoln has done. Let us congratulate one another, our country and our whole American people, on this greatest measure of the age.

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The 13th amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which abolished slavery, was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864. This account from the Greenfield, Massachusetts, Gazette and Courier newspaper reports on the celebration in Greenfield upon its passage. The celebration included ringing the church bells and a large meeting in Washington Hall. The Gazette & Courier was the newspaper in Greenfield, Massachusetts, from July 20, 1841 until June 24, 1932. Before 1841 the newspaper's name changed quite frequently, with Gazette a frequent part of the title.


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"The News from Home. Greenfield Items" excerpt on the passage of the Constitution Amendment fr. the Gazette & Courier newspaper

publisher   Greenfield Gazette and Courier
date   Feb 16, 1865
location   Greenfield, Massachusetts
height   9.0"
width   3.5"
process/materials   printed paper, ink
item type   Periodicals/Newspaper
accession #   #L05.136

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See Also...

"How the news of the Constitutional Amendment was received" article from the Gazette and Courier newspaper

"Amendment of the Constitution the Only Way to Kill Slavery" article from Gazette and Courier newspaper

"Constitutional Amendments" article from the Gazette and Courier newspaper

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