George Washington Slavery Essay

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George Washington owned several books and articles that discussed the abolishment of slavery which were all located in his personal library. Many pieces in the collection had been given to him as gifts, meaning there were personal relationships between Washington and the authors, many of which being from across the Atlantic world. These texts are one of the only few clues available to historians when researching Washington’s view on abolition and the dialogue between authors. Collecting pieces of evidence in Washington’s texts is how François Furstenberg, history professor and author of
Atlantic Slavery, Atlantic Freedom: George Washington, Slavery, and Transatlantic Abolitionist Network, presented this research article. In his thesis,
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However, approximately three years later, Washington seemed to have changed perspectives where he shifted his interest onto emancipation; the pamphlets that were previously overlooked discussed the topic of emancipation, so he then bound and published the pamphlets. In Furstenberg’s article, it was said this could have been an observable development of Washington’s understanding about slavery and freedom. Washington’s bound volume on slavery had multiple pamphlets from foreign authors that were reprinted in the United States; the usage of foreign texts gained attention from the nation’s printers, and according to Furstenberg, this is where the “Atlantic” networking is highlighted among international authors. The transatlantic discussion about slavery and abolition, displayed in Washington’s volume, presents his developed perspectives on the subject. There were six authors mentioned in Furstenberg’s article who seemed to have a role in Washington’s developing view, all being a part of the volume Tracts on Slavery. The first pamphlet in the volume, with the author David A. Cooper, Washington…show more content…
similar thoughts about slavery with the view being that “legislatures should take lead in abolition.” Cooper professed there needed to be action-taking place to abolish slavery, but he noted it needed not to be immediate with the belief that “emancipation would lead to
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