The Graduate Center - City University of New York

"Expulsion of Negroes and Abolitionists from Tremont Temple, Boston, Massachusetts, on December 3, 1860."

Marking the one-year anniversary of John Brown’s execution, a group of abolitionists held a large public meeting in Boston on December 3, 1860, shortly after Lincoln was elected president. Many of Boston’s wealthy mill owners, merchants, and bankers opposed Lincoln and feared huge business losses if the South seceded. When Frederick Douglass attempted to speak, anti-abolitionists in the audience disrupted the meeting, drawing in the police who forcibly removed the abolitionists from the stage. Winslow Homer’s illustration for the December 15, 1860 Harper’s Weekly was most likely based on a sketch from another artist present at the meeting.

Creator: Winslow Homer

Date: December 15, 1860

Publisher: Harper's Weekly

Source: Boston Public Library