Douglass Delivers London Reception Speech at Finsbury Chapel
Starting in August 1845, Douglass spent two years in Great Britain and Ireland, where he gave many lectures, mainly in Protestant churches or chapels.
His draw was such that some facilities were "crowded to suffocation"; an example was his hugely popular London Reception Speech, which Douglass delivered at Alexander Fletcher's Finsbury Chapel in May 1846. Douglass remarked that in England he was treated not "as a color, but as a man." He met and befriended the Irish nationalist Daniel O'Connell.
AT FINSBURY CHAPEL, MOORFIELDS, ENGLAND, MAY 12, 1846.
MR. DOUGLASS rose amid loud cheers, and said: I feel exceedingly glad of the opportunity now afforded me of presenting the claims of my brethren in bonds in the United States, to so many in London and from various parts of Britain, who have assembled here on the present occasion.