“REPORT OF PROCEEDINGS
FANEUIL HALL MEETING.
ON Tuesday, June 25, 1878, Ezra H. Heywood, of Princeton, Massachusetts, was sentenced, in the United States Circuit Court, to two years’ imprisonment at hard labor in Dedham Jail, and to pay a fine of one hundred dollars, the charge against him being that he had circulated through the mail an obscene pamphlet called “Cupid’s Yokes.” Shortly after his sentence, at one of the Sunday morning conferences which are regularly held at Investigator Hall, Boston, a committee was appointed to make arrangements for holding an indignation meeting. The committee consisted of Henry Damon, A. R. Spinney, Rev. J. M. L. Babcock, Laura Kendrick, J. P. Mendum, and Benj. R. Tucker. A petition was immediately put in circulation by this committee, asking the Boston Aldermen for the use of Faneuil Hall. It received the signatures of prominent and influential citizens, and was readily granted. Accordingly, a call was issued, inviting ‘ all friends of free speech, irrespective of sect or party, to be present at a meeting to be held in Faneuil Hall, on Thursday evening, August 1 (the anniversary of the emancipation of the slaves in the West Indies), at 7 o’clock, to protest against the injury done to the freedom of the press by the recent conviction, sentence, and imprisonment of Ezra H. Heywood.’ The meeting was held at the appointed time, and very largely attended. The audience was intelligent, quiet, orderly, attentive, enthusiastic, and almost unanimous in approval of the object of the meeting. Four thousand five hundred persons were in the hall at once, and it is estimated that six thousand visited it in the course of the evening. Though it was a standing audience, the larger portion of it was held until quarter to eleven.
The meeting was called to order by Benj. R. Tucker, who read the following list of officers selected by the committee of arrangements to conduct the meeting : —
President. — The Hon. Elizur Wright.
Vice-Presidents. — The Hon. Benjamin P. Ware of Marblehead, Charles Mclean of Boston, Elizabeth M. F. Denton of Wellesley, Henry N. Stone of Boston, the Hon. Thomas Robinson of Pawtucket, R. I., Josiah P. Mendum of Melrose, E. M. Chamberlin of Boston, Mrs. M. S. Wetmore of Charlestown, D. B. Morey, William Foster, Jr., of Providence, R. I., Horace Seaver of Boston, James Campbell, Albert P. Ware of Andover, A. R. Spinney of Chelsea, Albert Kendrick of Boston, L. K. Joslin of Providence, R. I., J. Q. A. Clifton of Boston, Henry Appleton of Providence, R. I., Alden Sampson of Charlestown, George A. Bacon, J. A. J. Wilcox of Chelsea, C. W. McLellan of Boston. …”
Proceedings of the Indignation Meeting held at the Faneuil Hall, 1878, pages 3-4