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Of the men called Founding Fathers of the United States, Benjamin Rush was the leading voice against slavery.
Rush, however, once owned an enslaved man — William Grubber, whom he later freed. Rush’s evolving abolitionist views were helped along in part by conversations with two other men.
One was Anthony Benezet, a French Quaker who moved to the colonies in the early 18th century and began holding classes for Black children in his home. Benezet helped form the country’s first anti-slavery group, the Pennsylvania Abolition Society.
The other was Granville Sharp, a British abolitionist. He never stepped foot in the colonies, but his work was published here.
Read more about Sharp’s anti-slavery connections in the Headlines of Yore thread below.