Third class of forerunners and coadjutors, up to 1787, consists of the Quakers and others in America—Yearly meeting for Pennsylvania and the Jerseys takes up the subject in 1696—and continue it till 1787—Other five yearly meetings take similar measures—Quakers, as individuals, also become labourers—William Burling and others—Individuals of other religious denominations take up the cause also—Judge Sewell and others—Union of the Quakers with others in a society for Pennsylvania, in 1774—James Pemberton —Dr. Rush—Similar union of the Quakers with others for New York and other provinces.
The next class of the forerunners and coadjutors, up to the year 1787, will consist, first, of the Quakers in America; and then of others, as they were united to these for the same object.
It may be asked, How the Quakers living there should have become forerunners and coadjutors in the great work now under our consideration. I reply, first, That it was an object for many years with these to do away the Slave-trade as it was carried on in their own ports. But this trade was conducted in part, both before and after the independence of America, by our own countrymen. It was, secondly, an object with these to annihilate slavery in America; and this they have been instruments in accomplishing to a considerable extent. But any abolition of slavery within given boundaries must be a blow to the Slave-trade there. The American Quakers, lastly, living in a land where both the commerce and slavery existed, were in the way of obtaining a number of important facts relative to both, which made for their annihilation; and communicating many of these facts to those in England, who espoused the same cause, they became fellow-labourers with these in producing the event in question.