Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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BRISBANE, William H., clergyman, born about 1803; died in Arena, Wisconsin, in 1878. He inherited a large number of slaves, but became convinced that slavery was wrong, and in 1835 brought thirty-three of them to the north, manumitting" them and aiding them to settle in life. In consequence of this, he was obliged to take rank among the poor men of the country. Making his home in Cincinnati, he became the associate of prominent abolitionists, and a constant worker in their cause. In the early days of the anti-slavery agitation he was among its foremost advocates. In 1855 he removed to Wisconsin, was chief clerk of the state senate in 1857, became pastor of the Baptist church in Madison, and early in the civil war was tax commissioner of South Carolina. In June, 1874, he took an active part in the reunion of the old abolition guards in Chicago.
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