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The Erie Canal changed New York and American society.  The canal’s success put the Empire State on the cutting edge of American history at a time when Americans were searching for their young nation’s identity and purpose.  New Yorkers felt called upon—not just to better their own lives—but to perfect society.  Many worked to improve public institutions.  Some, unsettled by change, sought comfort in religion, while still others became evangelical crusaders determined to cure the country of its social and political ills.  

Holy Cross Church Pulpit
The Anti-Slavery Alphabet
Gerrit Smith, Abolitionist
Timbuctoo: Gerrit Smith’s Experiment
Down with Abolition
John Brown -
Martyr or Murderer?
Conductors on the Underground Railroad
Frederick Douglass, Abolitionist & Conductor of
the Underground Railroad
Harriet Tubman, Abolitionist & Conductor of
the Underground Railroad
Women's Suffrage: Lucretia Mott, Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony