How did William Lloyd Garrison achieve national prominence?

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rrteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is important to remember that even though he was nationally prominent, William Lloyd Garrison was at no point a mainstream figure. He was on the radical fringe of the abolitionist movement, one which brooked no compromise whatsoever over the issue of slavery. Garrison even sometimes advocated the dissolution of the Union to rid the body politic of the stain of slavery. This being said, Garrison rose to prominence by the publication of The Liberator, his newspaper which remained in publication from 1831 through the Civil War. This paper, while relatively limited in circulation, inspired abolitionists throughout the North, most famously Frederick Douglass. Garrison also engaged in almost constant public speaking tours, lecturing like-minded groups around the North. He also took part in dramatic and provocative acts of protest, famously burning a copy of the Constitution, which he denounced as a "covenant with death." He organized the American Anti-Slavery Society, an organization that gained thousands of members throughout the North. Though he disdained politics, Garrison had become very well known by the time the Civil War broke out. 

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