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Elijah P. Lovejoy

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Christian Simon

on 31 October 2013

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Transcript of Elijah P. Lovejoy

2. What methods did the person use to improve American life?
Elijah defended the rights of slaves.
While in St. Louis Lovejoy opened one of the first public schools in the area.
Lovejoy was a writer for the “Observer” which contained many anti-slavery messages which brought awareness to the conditions of many slaves.

3. What success did the individual have in promoting reform?
Through many of his editorials large groups of citizens believed that either freedom would abolish slavery or slavery would abolish freedom. While preaching at Presbyterian Churches he preached that slaves had souls and needed religious educations just as white people did.

4. What details of the person’s work made him or her interesting historical figure?

Since slave owners didn’t like that he was taking the side of the slaves but was not considering himself an abolitionist many white men would threaten Elijah, but even then Lovejoy was adamant in preaching and writing his articles and sermons about slavery.
1. What criticisms of American society did the individual have?
Elijah was against slavery.
Supporter of the Whig party at a time when the Democratic Party was popular.
Opposed dueling and “the evils of alcohol”.
While he wrote for the for the “Observer” it was a Presbyterian paper that was extremely hostile against the Catholic Church and Protestant Churches that did not meet the editors personal standards of theological purity.

5. To what extent was the reformer obsessed with achieving an impractical goal through fanatical or impractical means?
Well I don’t think that he was obsessed, but he wanted to get his points across to the American people. Elijah would spread his messages however he could with or without his printing press. He was threatened to be tarred and feathered if he continued his publications Elijah didn’t care he still continued, so in November of 1835 a proslavery meeting in St. Louis passed a resolution declaring that freedom of press did not include freedom of speech which was a paradox. He just wanted to show people that what they were doing to the slaves was wrong but some people can’t admit when they’re in the wrong
6. What lasting impact did the persons reforms have on American society?
Lovejoy died for freedom of press and freedom of slaves. Elijah helped pave the way for those to fight for what is right even in self-sacrifice. Many people weren’t really thinking about the slave system until after his death. A young rising politician by the name of Abraham Lincoln denounced a mob rule “Let every man remember that to violate the law is to trample on the blood of his father, and tear the character of his own, and his children’s liberty.”
Sources: American Journalists, Author Donald A. Ritchie (Book)

Elijah P. Lovejoy
By: Christian E. Simon
November 9th, 1802 in Albion, Maine -November 7th 1837 in Alton Illinois
Oldest of 9 children of Reverend David Lovejoy and Elizabeth Patee Lovejoy
He learned how to read using the Bible
In 1823 Elijah entered a Baptist-sponsored Waterville College in Maine
Married Celia Ann French.
Became a preacher for a Presbyterian Church in 1833.

Elijah Parish Lovejoy
"a Martyr on the Altar of American Liberty"
Full transcript