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How Did Local Antislavery Women Form National Networks in the Antebellum United States?

Abstract

   Women drew upon and challenged the nation's understandings of woman's proper role to organize and sustain over 200 female antislavery societies between 1832 and 1870. They used correspondence, personal visits, and national conventions to link their local efforts into a national network, creating highly effective petition campaigns and fund-raising fairs. Female abolitionists endured physical violence and public shaming, but they drew strength from their religious convictions and the support of other abolitionist women.

   

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