Black and white abolitionists in the first half of the nineteenth century waged a biracial assault against slavery. Their efforts proved to be extremely effective. Abolitionists focused attention on slavery and made it difficult to ignore. They heightened the rift that had threatened to destroy the unity of the nation even as early as the Constitutional Convention.
Moses Brown (1738-1836) was an influential opponent of slavery; patron of education, religion and agriculture; and prominent Quaker. He also was a central figure in the birth of the Industrial Revolution, founding what was generally considered to be the first factory in America. In a busy life that spanned 98 years, he was prominent in virtually every aspect of life in his home town of Providence, Rhode Island.