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  • 37-BAC 1X1-Wendell Phillips
  • 36. Wendell Phillips - 1

Wendell Phillips

Artist:

Daniel Chester French

Location:

Boylston St. Mall, near Charles St.  

Location

Boylston St. Mall, near Charles St.
United States
42° 21' 9.7056" N, 71° 4' 5.952" W

Neighborhood:

Back Bay

Type:

Sculpture

Year:

1915

Medium:

Stoney Creek Granite

Collection:

City of Boston

Funders:

Unknown

Description:

Boston lawyer and orator Wendell Phillips was inspired to join the abolitionist cause after witnessing William Lloyd Garrison deliver an anti-slavery speech in 1835. On that occasion, he saw not only Garrison’s speech, but also his near lynching at the hands of some outraged listeners. Phillips later abandoned his legal practice to devote himself entirely to abolitionism, and like Garrison, he became known as a particularly eloquent speaker. In 1837, Phillips delivered a passionate speech at Faneuil Hall condemning the murder of the abolitionist minister Elijah Lovejoy. He also advocated for the rights of Native Americans, women, and prisoners. This statue by Daniel Chester French honors Phillips’s commitment to liberation, symbolized by the broken chain clutched in the figure’s left hand. The figure appears as an orator, and his right hand forms a fist, as if to accentuate an important remark.

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