Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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MOTT, James, philanthropist, born in North Hempstead, L. I., 20 June, 1788; died in Brooklyn, New York, 26 January, 1868. At nineteen he became a teacher in a Friends' boarding-school in Dutchess county, New York He removed to New York city, and in 1810 to Philadelphia, and became a partner of his wife's father in mercanthe business, in which he continued more than forty years, retiring with a competency. He was a participant in the movement against slavery and one of the earliest friends of William L. Garrison. In 1833 he aided in organizing in Philadelphia the National anti-slavery society, and in 1840 was a delegate from the Pennsylvania society to attend the World's anti-slavery convention at London, where he was among those who ineffectually urged the admission of the female delegates from the Pennsylvania and other societies. In 1848 he presided over the first Woman's rights national convention, at Seneca Falls, New York He was a member of the Society of Friends, and in later life aided in maturing the plans of government and instruction for the Friends' college at Swarthmore, near Philadelphia. He published "Three Months in Great Britain."--His wife, Lucretia, reformer, born on the island of Nantucket, Massachusetts, 3 January, 1793 ; died near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 11 November, 1880, was descended through her father. Captain Thomas Coffin, from one of the original purchasers of the island. When she was eleven years old her parents removed to Boston, Massachusetts She was educated in the school where Mr. Mort was teaching, and became a teacher there at the age of fifteen. In 1809 she joined her parents, who had removed to Philadelphia, where she married in 1811. In 1817 she took charge of a small school in Philadelphia, and in 1818 appeared in the ministry of the Friends, and soon became noted for the clearness, refinement, and eloquence of her discourses. In the division of the society, in 1827, she adhered to the Hicksite branch. She early became interested in the movement against slavery, and remained one of its most prominent and persistent advocates until the emancipation. In 1833 she assisted in the formation at Philadelphia of the American anti-slavery society, though, owing to the ideas then accepted as to the activities of women, she did not sign the declaration that was adopted. Later, for a time, she was active in the formation of female anti-slavery organizations. In 1840 she went to London as a delegate from the American anti-slavery society to the World's anti-slavery convention, but it was there decided to admit no women. She was received, however, with cordiality, formed acquaintance with those most active in the movement in Great Britain, and made various addresses. The action of the convention in excluding women excited indignation, and led to the establishment of woman's rights journals in England and France, and to the movement in the United States, in which Mrs. Mott took an active part. She was one of the four women that called the convention at Seneca Falls, New York, in 1848, and subsequently devoted part of her efforts to the agitation for improving the legal and political status of women. She held frequent meetings with the colored people, in whose welfare and advancement she felt deep interest, and was for several years president of the Pennsylvania peace society. In the exercise of her "gift" as a minister, she made journeys through New England, New York, Pennsylvania, and into Maryland, Virginia, Ohio, and Indiana, where she did not refrain from denouncing slavery. She was actively interested in the Free religious associations formed in Boston about 1868, and in the Woman's medical college in Philadelphia. See her " Life," with that of her husband, edited by her granddaughter, Anna Davis Hallowell (Boston, 1884).
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