Alexander McLeod’s stand against slavery

Alexander McLeod (1774-1833)

In the fall of 1800, a call was made on Mr. McLeod to the pastoral charge of the united congregations of the city of New York, and Coldenham, in Orange county, in the same State. Mr. McLeod demurred, on the plea that there were slaveholders among the subscribers to the call. He urged this fact as reason for rejecting the call. The Presbytery now having this subject regularly brought before them, determined at once to purge our section of the church of the great evil of slavery. They enacted that no slaveholder should be allowed the communion of the church. Thus, at Mr. McLeod’s suggestion, the subject was acted upon, even before he became a member of Presbytery, and this inhuman and demoralizing practice was purged from our connection. It is true, it only required to be mentioned, and be regularly brought before the Court. There was no dissenting voice in condemning the nefarious traffic in human flesh. From that period forward, none either practising or abetting slavery in any shape, has been found on the records of our ecclesiastical connection. [Source : Wylie, Samuel Brown, D.D., Memoir of Alexander McLeod, D.D., New York (New York: Charles Scribner, 145 Nassau Street, 1855), page 51.]

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