Quaker Beliefs Influence Abolition

by Justin Lee

How do Quaker Beliefs in Equality contribute to the continuation of American democracy?

The Quakers' belief in equality contributed to the continuation of American democracy in several ways. One way is that Quakers were some of the very first whites to go against slavery because they were also some of the first to realize that slavery was going against their own values of equality. Another contribution is that they were a major part of the Abolition societies such as the underground railroad members that had helped slaves escaped from their masters. The Quakers London Society of Friends wrote a petition to British Parliament against slavery which was signed by over 300 Quakers.

Important Facts

  • equality was one of the Quakers most followed and respected beliefs
  • in 1727 they officially as a whole started to show their disapproval in slavery
  • after they wrote the petition they were not getting much attention because in Britain at the time there was a lot of prejudice against religious dissenters
  • they have also been barred or evicted from representing parliament
  • even though the Quakers believed in equality it doesn't mean that all of them didn't own slaves
  • Those who did were disowned by the Quakers if they were not willing to change
  • The Germantown petition was one of the first ever to go against slavery itself.

Citations

  1. "Quakers (Society of Friends): The Abolition of Slavery Project." Quakers (Society of Friends): The Abolition of Slavery Project. E2BN - East of England Broadband Network and MLA East of England, 2009. Web. 15 Dec. 2014.
  2. "Quaker Protests against Slavery in the 17th Century." Quaker Protests against Slavery in the 17th Century. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Dec. 2014.
  3. "Quakers in the World." - Anti-Slavery. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Dec. 2014."Quakers in the World." - Anti-Slavery. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Dec. 2014.
  4. "Quakers:From Slave Traders to Early Abolitionists." PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 16 Dec. 2014.