George Hogarth Sr.
Their father, George Hogarth Sr. was a prominent figure in abolition movements in Brooklyn.
Preacher and Educator
Hogarth, Sr. was a well respected pastor at the African Methodist Episcopalian Church. In this position, Hogarth, Sr. also engaged in campaigns against alcohol abuse. In 1831, the Brooklyn Temperance ASsociation for People of Color elected him as an officer. In addition to leading a congregation in Brooklyn, he edited the denomination's national publication, The African Methodist Magazine.
From The Liberator, August 6th 1831. Brooklyn, NY, July 28th 1831. Boston, Massachusetts.
In the 1830's he helped found the African School of Brooklyn in Weeksville. The school was closely tied to Hogarth's church, where students often exhibited their work. In a profile of the school (see item to the left), the Long Island Star wrote, "Much praise is due to Mr. H. for his laudable efforts to meliorate the condition of his people." Hogarth was a trustee for the school until leaving in the 1840s to take on a greater role in the AME Church. (In Pursuit of Knowledge by Baumgartner).
Critic of Colonization Schemes
George, Sr. was a leading voice in battling colonization schemes. In the 1830s, the Colonization Society proposed resettling black Americans in Africa. For example, he organized a large meeting in Brooklyn in June 1831. Many African-American leaders saw colonization as a threat to equal rights. At the 1831 meeting, they condemned the American Colonization Society for wanting to "banish our colored population to the deadly clime of Africa." Furthermore, they concluded that colonization schemes were "constantly widenign the breach between the whties and the blacks in this country, and if they should be much longer persisted in, will inevitable lead to a civil war."
Anti-colonization activists, above all else, insisted on their Americanness. Their desire was equal rights and respect in their native land, the United States. They resolved, "We shall be active in our endeavors to convince the members of the Colonization Society, and the public generally, that we are men, that we are brethren, that we are countrymen and fellow-citizens, and demand an equal share of protection from our federal government with any other class of citizens in the community."
(The Liberator: July 2nd 1831)
A Well-Connected Abolitionist
Hogarth attended conventions and corresponded with leading abolitionists of the day. In a letter dated April 14th 1837 from H. Wainwright to W. Lloyd Garrison, for example, Wainwright refers to George Hogarth as their mutual friend.
From The Liberator, June 16th 1837, Hayti. Interesting Epistile. Boston, Massachusetts.
At a meeting of the colored inhabitants of Brooklyn, NY, occuring on April 28th, George Hogarth wrote out the resolutions of this organization in regard to William Lloyd Garrisons mission to England. In these resolutions, a clear stand against slavery is made and even a plea for the English to help improve the station of African-Americans in the United States. Hogarth wrote:
"Resolved , That this meeting earnestly and respectfully solicit the good people of England to contribute to the proposed object, and as humble suppliants, do sincerely and affectionately pray, that the benedictions of a wise and kind Providence may crown all their efforts to meliorate the condition of the sable descendants of Africa, which have ever characterised them as a philanthropic and christian people.
Resolved , That we consider the education of our children as one of the most important obligations laid upon us by the moral Governor of the universe, and that it is one of the most efﬁcient means whereby we may effectually emerge out of the state of moral degradation in which we have lain for ages.
Resolved , That in our opinion the existence of slavery in these United States brings moral reproach upon the whole nation; it paralyzes all the efforts of the philanthropists who would sympathise for suffering humanity, and measurably brings to nought all the good which may be expected to result from our republican institutions.
Resolved , That we consider slavery as one of the greatest sins that mankind can be guilty of; we therefore look at the doctrine of 'expediency ' and 'gradual cessation from slavery ,' as we would the doctrine of gradual cessation from intemperance, murder, or any other crime. The immediate emancipation from slavery and restoration to our inalienable rights in our native country, is what we sincerely pray and long look for from the hand of a beneﬁcent and overruling Providence, and not the being colonized under the vertical sun of Africa.
Resolved, That we return our thanks to WM. LLOYD GARRISON, Esq. for his extensive and unceasing philanthropic exertions in our behalf. We rejoice at his departure
for England, and humbly pray and sincerely hope that the guardian angel may protect him from the dangers of the seas, and in a foreign land, and speedily and safely return him amongst us again.
Resolved , That while our hearts glow with gratitude to the philanthropists in this country for their exertions in our behalf, we are not unmindful of the many efforts made by the friends of liberty and humanity in England, for the bettering the condition of the people of color, and trust that the day is not far distant when their extensive labors shall be crowned with abundant success."
From The Liberator, May 25th 1833. A Voice from Brooklyn. Boston, Massachusetts.
Civil Rights Activist
On December 7th 1840, The Great Mass Meeting of Colored Citizens met at the Baptist Church on Anthony St. to "petition the State Legislature to secure the unrestricted use of the Elective Franchise to all her citizens irrespective of color or condition"
Reverend George Hogarth was one of the main speakers and organizers of this event. He, along with other pastors active in the African American Community of Brooklyn held a number of these meetings, such as another on the 21st of the same month in 1840.
From The Colored American, December 5, 1840, Great Mass Meeting of Colored Citizens At The Baptist Church, Anthony St. New York, New York
From The Colored American, December 19, 1840, Third Great Mass Meeting of Colored Citizens at The Bethel Church Second Street. New York, New York.