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M-124: Hinton Rowen Helper Collection

DATE: ca. 19th century

CREATOR: Helper, Rowan Hinton (1829-1909) American abolitionist and author.

SCOPE: The collection includes many of the author's own works, annotated in his hand, concerning slavery and racial issues of the day, as well as hundreds of anti-slavery tracts and other treatises and contemporary speeches concerning the illegality of slavery, mostly from the first half of the nineteenth century.

EXTENT:  Approximately 100 volumes, and over 300 pamphlets.

HISTORY: Helper was a southern abolitionist of the 1850s and 1860s, and author of the classic, The Impending Crisis, and other anti-slavery tracts, making him "the most hated man in the South," as he came to be known during those days of strife and conflict for the American nation. The working library of this southern intellectual was bought from a St. Louis bookseller in the late nineteenth century by the Mercantile Library as a lot, recalling the fact that Helper, a failed businessman and railroad promoter after the Civil War, lived briefly in St. Louis at that time.

ACCESS: This collection is available for on-site use only in the Rare Book and Manuscripts Reading Room. Some of the material in Special Collection M-124 may be photocopied, digitally scanned or photographed, subject to condition. For collections marked limited access, researchers are advised to contact the library at least three business days in advance of their visit to submit a request to view the physical material.

Researchers are advised to call ahead concerning changes in hours due to University intersessions and holidays. The St. Louis Mercantile Library is located on levels one and two of the Thomas Jefferson Library building.

In observance of security procedures, certain services may not be available shortly before the daily closing time.

Preferred Citation: When citing the material from this collection, the preferred citation is: From the Special Collections of the St. Louis Mercantile Library at the University of Missouri – St. Louis.