Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    William E. Channing: A Letter on the Annexation of Texas to the United States. London: John Green, 121, Newgate Street. 1837. 8vo. 48 pp. Paper wrappers; disbound. Moderate to heavy age toning. Chip at upper right corner of title page. Very good condition.

    William Ellery Channing, grandson of Declaration Signer William Ellery, was one of the leading figures of the early American Unitarian movement and an ardent abolitionist. Speaking strongly against the annexation of Texas, Channing addresses his letter "To the Honorable Henry Clay," to share his "Thoughts on the evils of a spirit of conquest, and on slavery." Channing argues that the Texas revolution was not justified by grievances against Mexico and that its real causes were land speculation and pro-slavery expansionism. Channing goes on to state that annexation would be disastrous for the Union and would exert a negative influence on the moral sentiments and principles of the nation, by encouraging rampant speculation, by bringing into the confederacy a community whose history and circumstances were adverse to moral order and lawful restraint, by violating national faith, and by proposing immoral and inhuman ends through slavery. Justin H. Smith, in his The Annexation of Texas (New York, 1919), devotes five pages to an analysis of Channing's Letter, saying "it exerted a wonderful influence in the United States, Europe and Mexico and still echoes in current books and in public sentiment." However, Smith claims that Channing was incorrect in believing that the fundamental reasons for the Texas revolution were land speculation and a desire to prevent the abolition of slavery.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2009
    24th-25th Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,257

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 37 days left to consign to the 2019 November 17 Musical Instruments Signature Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    The resulting auction of my property overwhelmed me. I want to thank Tom Slater and the Heritage team for a very satisfactory experience and profitable result with my historical consignment.
    Henry L.,
    Lexington, KY
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2019 July 16 - 18 The Armstrong Family Collection III Space Exploration Signature Auction - Dallas
    2019 July 16 - 18 The Armstrong Family Collection III Space Exploration Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $4,645,206