John Albion Andrew, 1818—1867

[Mentioned in Poems, Pref., p vi]

John Albion Andrew won lasting fame as governor of Massachusetts during the Civil War. His entrance into politics did not come until after twenty years of law practice, but immediately upon his election to the Massachusetts House of Representatives, he manifested his ability in debate and his power as a speaker.

Andrew was born in South Windham, Maine, and took his liberal arts degree at Bowdoin College, where Longfellow was one of his teachers. Andrew was poet of his class and always loved poetry. At Bowdoin he heard the English abolitionist, George Thompson, and ever after he was an abolitionist himself. He believed it possible to hate slavery without hating the slave owner and advocated procuring freedom through constitutional means rather than through violence.

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Signs of the Times
February 8, 1958
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