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Hamilton, Thomas(1823–1865) - Journalist, activist, Chronology

african anglo weekly american

Thomas Hamilton was a successful and respected black journalist and antislavery activist during the mid-1800s. His publications the Anglo-African Magazine and the Weekly Anglo-African informed and uplifted black Americans. Periodicals such as these that supported the antislavery movement were crucial to the political and social strategy of blacks. Hamilton’s role as editor, publisher, and activist greatly influenced the actions and reaction of blacks during this difficult period.

Thomas Hamilton was born in New York City on April 26, 1823, and was the youngest of two sons born to William Hamilton, a black abolitionist. His mother’s name and occupation are not known. The elder Hamilton, who was a carpenter by trade, was well known as an activist both on a local and national level. He was one of the original trustees of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion denomination and attended the four national conventions for blacks held annually between 1831 and 1835. When William Hamilton died in 1836, he was eulogized as an active and effective member of organizations who supported moral and intellectual elevation for his people. Thomas Hamilton received a rudimentary education in African Free Schools and the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, but it was the Hamilton household, which was alive with abolitionist ideas and reform press, that made a lasting impression on him. With the death of his father in 1836 Hamilton went to work in 1837 for the Colored American , a local African American weekly. Hamilton was a carrier for the paper, which was read in many black communities in the North. He later worked as a bookkeeper and mail clerk for the religious journal the New York Evangelist ; the official periodical of the American Anti-Slavery Society, the National Anti-Slavery Standard ; and the leading Congregationalist weekly, the Independent .

Chronology

1823

Born in New York City on April 26

1836

Goes to work for the Colored American

1841

Establishes the newspaper People’s Press

1843

Closes the newspaper People’s Press

1844

Marries Catherine Anne Leonard of New York; Leonard dies shortly thereafter

1852

Marries Matilda Ann Africanus of Brooklyn

1859

Publishes the Anglo-African Magazine and the Weekly Anglo-African

1860

Last printing of the Anglo-African Magazine

1861

Sells the paper Weekly Anglo-African to the Haitian Emigration bureau; re-inaugurates Weekly Anglo-African five months later

1865

Dies in Jamaica, Long Island on May 29

Hamilton, William (Donald) [next] [back] Hamilton, Sir William Rowan

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