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Vivisection in America. Cobbe, Frances Power, 1822–1904.
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THAT the subject of Vivisection is one of importance and interest, especially at the present day, in view of its surprising increase during the past ten years, is attested by the fact that the letters to the undersigned herein reproduced are written by representative men and women of universal fame, and in many cases of widely diverse views.

When persons of the exalted character of Rev. Dr. Bartol; Dr. Berdoe, of England; Dr. Blackwood; United States Senator Blair; Rev. Dr. Phillips Brooks; United States Senator Chandler; Miss Frances Power Cobbe; Miss Fanny Davenport; United States Senator Dawes; Rev. Dr. Morgan Dix; United States Senator Dolph; Mr. William Lloyd Garrison; Col. Robert G. Intersoll; Mme. Ouida; Mme. Adelina Patti; Signor Salvini; Mr. Denman Thompson; Baron von Weber, of Germany; and a large number of others, whose letters it would be impossible to publish for want of space,—people illustrious in their various walks of life, and who are far from being “sentimentalists,”—are willing to place themselves on record as opposed to this frightful practice (and nearly all even unqualifiedly advocating its absolute prohibition), we may well pause to question the utility and propriety of Vivisection.

The undersigned, who has made a careful study of the subject during more than fifteen years, and who has derived the knowledge he possesses of the matter from the works of the vivisectors themselves, and not from the page: 4 writings of their opponents,—so that, if he be partisan, his partisanship must be on the side of the former, in whose interest he originally worked until he ascertained the truth—has no hesitation in positively stating that it has not only not been productive of good, but that it has proved a most prolific source of error; and none have been more ready to admit this than many of the great vivisectors. It is said that Majendie, the “Prince of Torturers,” when ill, persistently refused to be attended by any physician who had drawn his conclusions from a source so certain to lead to error as Vivisection.

It has been abundantly proven by the experience of the Victoria Street Society of England that no possible restrictive law, so-called, will be of the slightest benefit.

About fourteen years ago, after long and conscientious labor, a number of prominent philanthropists, chief among whom was, I believe, my friend Miss Frances Power Cobbe, succeeded in having a restrictive law enacted by Parliament, which at the time promised much. The results were embodied in a pamphlet published about two years ago, called “Twelve Years' Trial of the Vivisection Act.” It was therein shown not only that the practice of Vivisection had not been diminished, but that it had flourished more than ever before, under the so-called restrictive act, which was valuable to the vivisectors, principally by being an absolute shield and bulwark to all who complied with the provisions which “restricted,” the principal clause of which required them to take out licenses before vivisecting.

“It was not till nearly four years' experience of parliamentary action on the subject, and of very arduous and painful study, that the program of restriction was finally abandoned by the originators of the movement.” No restrictive act which human ingenuity may devise can afford sufficient protection to animals delivered over to a vivisection. Some opponents of vivisection fondly imagine that page: 5 they can devise such provisions; but it can be unhesitatingly asserted that no one who understands the purposes and methods of vivisectional research can believe that such provisions are possible. They fall back on the old fallacy of anæsthletics; of this it is sufficient to quote the famous words of Dr. Hoggan: “Anæsthetics” (by the delusions which humane people indulge about them) “have proved the greatest curse to vivisectible animals.”

There can be absolutely no line drawn by the Legislature between the use of vivisection and its worst abuses; and “whenever the abuses of a practice are very great, and. they cannot be separated from the use, then the use itself must be forbidden,” according to a well-recognized principle of legislation.

Perhaps the greatest of all incentives to vivisection is the honor (?) and distinction obtained among the vivisectors by the published accounts of their exploits. So long as it is permitted under a restrictive law, so long such publications (with due care in alleging the use of anæsthetics, and compliance with other provisions of law) may safely go on. But if it be forbidden unconditionally, then, and then only, this great incentive to the practice will cease to exist.

Rather than cause the enactment of a restrictive law in the United States, the best-informed opponents of Vivisection would defer all legislation on the subject until, through continued agitation, by the introduction of bills for its total suppression in the State legislatures and in Congress, and in every other possible way, the time shall arrive when the approach of civilization will make it possible for such bills to become laws; which laws, in a civilized age, there would never be occasion to invoke.

There is another phase of the subject as yet but little thought of. There is no argument in favor of Vivisection which does not apply more completely, more forcibly, to men than to animals. If the inferior is justly sacrificed to the page: 6 higher, the legality of the surrender to scientific torture of idiots, criminals, those incurably diseased, and, indeed, all ignorant and brutalized men, including vivisectors, is beyond question. The lives of these are valueless to society, when they are not, as they usually are, noxious to it. At present vivisectors are timid and hypocritical. They sigh that the “rat or two” that they ask in their love for humanity is grudgingly bestowed; but they do not mention so freely the hundreds of experiments in which they keep animals skinned, with nerves laid bare, irritated with electricity and in every possible way, cut open their living bodies, roast, crucify, boil, subject them to experiments causing the most excruciating agony in the most sensitive nerves—and the greater the suffering the greater the “joyful excitement” with which they inflict it. They already say among themselves that no true results can be reached without human subjects.

“French and Italian physiologists outrival each other in their relations of their wanton and exultant ingenuity in producing unnatural agony and watching its helpless struggles,” says “Ouida,” to whom the writer is indebted for many of the facts herein appearing. “That these men do not immediately give themselves the greater luxury of human victims is due only to their timidity before public opinion. I fail to see any logical refusal that can be made them when they shall demand it.” When Majendie, operating for cataract, plunged his needle to the bottom of his patient's eye, that he might observe the effect of mechanical irritation of the retina upon unexpectant nerves, he showed how greatly the zeal of the vivisector may impair the conscientiousness of the medical adviser, and, above all, the sympathy of man for man. No wonder that vivisectors refuse to be attended, when ill, by vivisectors!

Liberty in Vivisection, physiologists themselves, in Germany, France, and Italy, say, has produced abuses. In page: 7 America, says Dr. Leffingwell, it has led to the repetition, for demonstration, of Majendie's extreme barbarities,—barbarities which have been condemned by every leading physiologist of England, in which country a careful study of mortality statistics shows that in no case has Vivisection lessened the fatality of a single disease beyond what it was thirty-five years ago.

In ten years Prof. Schiff vivisected fourteen thousand (14,000) dogs; it is estimated that of other animals he vivisected seventy thousand (70,000); and ten years ago he was regularly calling for ten dogs a week. At that time, in Lyons, dogs were becoming scarce, and it was proposed to breed them for the purpose of Vivisection.

Mr. Murdock, a most able veterinary surgeon, in a work published by him, gives an account of a visit to a French laboratory as follows: “Here lay six or seven living horses, fixed by every mechanical device by the head and feet to pillars, while the students were engaged in performing different operations. The sight was truly horrible! The operations had begun early in the forenoon, it now being three o'clock... The poor wretches had ceased being able to make any violent struggles; but the deep heaving of the panting chest, and the horrid look of the eyes, when such were yet left in the head, the head itself being lashed to a pillar, was harrowing beyond endurance.

“The students had begun their day's work in the least vital parts of the animals. The trunks were there, but they had lost their tails, hoofs, ears, etc.; and the operators were now engaged in the more important operations, such as tying the arteries, trepanning the cranium, cutting down upon the sensitive parts,—as we were informed, on expressing our horror, that they might see the retraction of the muscles by pinching and irritating the various nerves.

“One animal had a side of the head, including the eye page: 8 and ear, completely dissected; and other students were laying open and cauterizing the hock of the same animal.”

Mr. Rogers adds to this:—

“The number of horses operated on is six, twice a week; sixty-four operations are performed on each horse, and four or five generally die before half the operations are completed; and, as it takes two days to go through the list, the remaining one or two poor animals are left alive, half-mangled, until the next morning, only to be subjected to additional tortures.

“Among the operations which I remember, were firing in every part where it could or could not be required operation for removing the lateral cartilages, which involves tearing off the quarters of the hoof with pincers; operation for stone, in which a stone is put into the bladder and afterwards removed; operation for hernia nicking, removal of the ears, eyes, etc.

“The effect of all this on the minds of the students may be inferred fromn the sang froid of a student who was firing a horse's nose, as he said, for pastime.

“A little bay mare, worn out in the service of man, one of eight, on a certain operation day, having unfortunately retained life throughout the fiendish ordeal, and looking like nothing ever made by the hand of God,—with loins ripped open, skin torn and ploughed by red-hot irons, riddled by setons, tendons severed, hoofless, sightless, and defenceless, was exultingly reared [Baron von Weber says, ‘amid laughter’] on her bleeding feet just when gasping for breath and dying, to show what dexterity had done in completing its work before death took place.”

Is it surprising that the late Henry Bergh considered that this unfitted “the physician for the intimate and tender relations of friend and adviser,” and made him “hence more to be dreaded than disease itself”?

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Below follows a letter similar to those sent to a number of prominent persons:

BOSTON, Mass., March 20, 1890. TO ...

Permit me, at the suggestion of my friend, Mr. George T. Angell, President of the Mass. Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, to respectfully) direct your attention to the subject matter of this pamphlet, which I take the liberty of forwarding you, and to beg the favor of its thoughtful perusal at your hands.

If the most cruel and unjustifiable exercise imaginable of the power possessed by the strong to oppress the weak can move your heart to pity, the case as herein presented surely cannot fail to do so, for it faithfully portrays those cruelties, terrible even beyond mortal conception, to which defenceless animals are daily subjected in the United States, at the hands of merciless vivisectors—in other words, animals are dissected alive, usually without the use of anæsthetics, for the supposed (but illusory) gain to science.

Being about to issue at my own expense (and, I may add, wholly without the possibility of pecuniary emolument resulting therefrom, or even reimbursement), a very large edition of the pamphlet, “Vivisection in America,” I beg of you most earnestly to forward to me your written endorsement and approval of its purpose, that I may, with your kind permission, print the same in connection with words of commendation from other representative persons, in a preface to the new edition.

By so doing you will materially advance the cause of Humanity, and incur the profound and lasting gratitude of all lovers of Justice.

Permit me, my dear Sir, to subscribe myself,

Yours truly,


No. 18 Richfield Street.
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In reply to this, the letters printed below (with the exception of the first) have been received in the order in which they are printed:—

From the late Henry Bergh, founder, and for nearly twenty-two years president, of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals:—

Sept. 2, 1880. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq.:

Dear Sir,—Your favor is received, in relation to vivisection. After long and patient investigation of the subject, and in view of the action of the people of several European states—recommending the total abolition of the hideous practice—I last winter asked to be heard by the Legislature of New York upon the propriety of its entire prohibition. A memorial prepared by me was presented simultaneously and read in both houses, and referred to a joint committee. That committee appointed the assembly chamber for a hearing; and, having previously made myself master of my subject, I laid bare the awful features of it.

The Herald and other papers next day testified to the thoroughness of the manner in which it was treated; but the bill afterwards presented was rejected by Senate and Assembly.

This I expected, as I never contemplated doing more than to exhibit to the people the barbarities which are going on in their midst in the insulted name of Science! reserving for a future occasion more practical and positive results.

I have now prepared a printed circular to all our agents throughout the State, instructing them to obtain as many signatures as possible, which at the proper time I shall present to the Legislature, in support of a second application for a law suppressing the dreadful tortures. I may fail again, but I propose to fight this question out on this line, if it takes all the rest of my life!

I believe that these scientific cruelties surpass all other wrongs inflicted on the lower animals—collectively.

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To perpetuate them it is first necessary to render the heart as tough and as insensible as India-rubber, which process, I hold, unfits the physician for the intimate and tender relations of friend and adviser, and hence more to be dreaded than disease itself.

The article to which you allude, in the Scribner monthly, I saw, and has been the cause of much public writing in rejoinder, both on my part, and that of scientific men.

It will give me pleasure to confer with you at any time; and with that view I will state that I am usually at these headquarters daily, except about the middle of the day, when, between 12 and 2, I am in the habit of going out on business. I will be glad to see you here, or, if you prefer, will call on you.

With great respect,


From Mme. Adelina Patti:—


Etant très occupès occupés en ce moment, Madame Patti vous prie de l'excuser si elle ne répond par directement à votre intéressante lettre, et me charge de vous de vous dire qu'elle adèhe complètement aux sentiments de réprobation que vous exprimez sur la vivisection et en général sur toute cruanté envers les animaux.

Veuillez agrèer agréer , Monsieur, l'expression de sa considération tres distinguée.

Votre humble serviteur,

A. MORINI, Secretaire.



Being very occupied at this moment, Madame Patti prays you to excuse her if she does not respond directly

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to your interesting letter, and charges me to say to you that she adheres completely to the sentiments of reprobation that you express on vivisection and in general on all cruelty toward animals.

Be good enough to receive, Sir, the expression of her very distinguishled consideration.

Your humble servant,

A. MORINI, Secretary.

From Dr. Blackwood, the eminent physician of Philadelphia:—


Your letter has just been handed to me by my friend Mrs. White, and I answer it at once by saying that I endorse all that you advance concerning the brutalizing effect of vivisection on those who prosecute it and the witnesses alike. Absolutely useless as it has been abundantly proved to be to all thinking and reasoning minds, it needs but the careful investigation of the medical profession at large to bring its members to the conclusion reached by the few who have given this important matter the consideration it deserves. I hope the widespread dissemination of the pamphlet Vivisection in America which you propose so generously sending out, will be the means of starting public investigation, and if it does this, the time will soon come when vivisectors will be relegated to the category of professional criminals, and criminals who deserve the heavy hand of the law to be laid on—and laid on the more because they should, from the pretensions they make, be the protectors, instead of the atrocious torturers, of animals who have not the power to protect themselves. With much regard, I am,

Very sincerely yours,


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From Mr. William Lloyd Garrison:—

March 21, 1890. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq., Boston, Mass.

I have read with painful interest the pamphlet on vivisection which you sent me, and thank you for it.

It seems incredible that men who are working in the interests of mankind can be so cruel and insensible to the sufferings of dumb animals. The contention of the physicians that vivisection has yielded immensely to the knowledge of the human system is by no means made clear, and their claims for alleviating suffering in consequence are to be taken with many grains of allowance. If the verdict of the doctors themselves were unanimous, their case would be a strong one, but with such eminent testimony as that of Dr. Tait against the practice, the question is an open one.

But even though it were demonstrated that medical science had advanced and human suffering been alleviated by the torture of animals, the moral feeling of mankind has yet to be changed before it can accept relief at such a cost. Every feeling of humanity revolts at the experiments as described by the medical men who practise vivisection, and one rises from a perusal of their records with a doubt as to which is the human and which is the brute animal.

I hope your pamphlet will have a wide circulation and an equally wide perusal.

Very sincerely yours,


From Rev. Phillips Brooks:—

233 CLARENDON ST., BOSTON, March 22, 1890. MY DEAR SIR:

I am heartily in sympathy with every wise effort to limit the license of vivisection and to lessen the suffering

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which it involves, and I sincerely hope that your pamphlet may make valuable contribution to these ends.

Yours very truly,



From Senator Dawes, of Massachusetts.

WASHINGTON, D.C., 24th March, 1890.

I have yours of the 20th inst., and also your pamphlet, which I have read with great interest and instruction. I agree with you essentially in the suggestions made.

Yours truly,



From Signor Tommaso Salvini:—

BOSTON, March 25th, 1890. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq.:

Dear Sir,—The spirit that animates the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, of which you are a worthy representative, can only be the inspiration of a kindly heart, and like you I deplore the fact that these creatures, deprived of speech, but not of feeling and affection, are often sacrificed for anatomical experiments and for other researches of modern science. Those who employ such heartless measures say that these are necessary for the good of humanity, but I repeat instead that they are expedients of a barbarous ambition. Pure science should be of general benefit, hurtful to no one, and in my opinion man should be prevented from the employment of such examples, humiliating to the entire human race.

Very truly yours,


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From Senator Blair, of New Hampshire:—

March 29, 1890. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq.,
Attorney and Councellor-at-Law, Boston, Mass.:

Dear Sir,—I am in receipt of your pamphlet treating of the barbarities and fiendish cruelties which our Christian civilization practises or permits upon dumb animals. It seems to me that it would be far better that the law should select certain men to die under the knife in the interests of science for humanity in general, just as others are designated for death in battle for the common defence, than that this wholesale and unrestrained indulgence in what is called “vivisection” should be allowed to go on and to increase its needless extravagance of torture.

Your work is in behalf of men as well as of the dumb creatures of God, for no human being can practise these torments habitually without developing the latent savagery of his own nature. No zeal for science can justify it. It would be much better to dissect men alive occasionally for the general welfare, because the attendant phenomena and demonstrations of thle victims, being of our own particular form of animal, would be far more valuable than the result of our observation upon the physical structure illustrated in the agonies unto death of the helpless creatures around us.

I hope that your pamphlet may have universal circulation. It will make us a better people.

Truly yours,


From Senator Chandler, of New Hampshire:—

March 31, 1890. MY DEAR SIR:

Yours of March 28th, with your pamphlet, is at hand. You are doing a noble work with conciseness, decision, and courage.

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I cannot believe it possible that the interests of medical science require the vivisection of animals.

Yours truly,



From Rev. Dr. Morgan Dix, Rector of Trinity Parish, New York:—

NEW YORK, April 1st, 1890. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq.,
Attorney and Counsellor-at-Law,
18 Richfield Street, Boston

My dear Sir,—I acknowledge receipt of your communication of the 20th ulto., together with a copy of your pamplet entitled Vivisection in America. You request me to read that pamphlet. I respectfully decline to do so, as the subject is too horrible for consideration. I have read accounts of the tortures inflicted in the name of Science on the creatures committed to our care or placed in our power by a Divine Providence, and they have made me sick at heart for weeks together. I shall never peruse these frightful statistics again. I have also read what arguments are made in extenuation or recommendation of the practice, and their only effect has been to strengthen my conviction that man is capable of becoming the most barbarous and most merciless of all agents.

I gladly join with any one who protests against the abuse of our power over confiding and intelligent animals.

The lower creation is a deep mystery. There are in it intelligent and sensitive beings with virtues which man may well imitate, and with qualities which inspire affection. God has given us dominion over them and powers which we ought not to abuse; and when I go into His presence I wish to be able to tell Him that I abhor, detest, and protest against the tortures of these poor creatures under the pretence of thereby benefiting our own lordly race.

You may make what use you please of this letter.

I remain, in conclusion,

Respectfully yours,


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From Mr. Denman Thompson:—


I heartily endorse the sentiments against the horrors of vivisection expressed in the pamphlet on Vivisection in America, which you were kind enough to send me. Cruelty to dumb animals is wrong in itself, and the most elaborate scientific plea cannot justify it. I have always been an advocate of scientific progress, but I cannot bring myself to believe in the utility of torturing—in the name of medical science—animals who cannot protest for themselves.

Very truly,


From Senator Dolph, of Oregon:—

April 3d, 1890. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq.,
18 Richfield St., Boston, Mass.

Dear Sir,—I am just in receipt of your favor of the 31st ult.

Also a copy of your pamphlet entitled Vivisection in America, which I have read with interest.

I heartily approve of its purposes, and sympathize with you in the good work you have undertaken.

Yours truly,


From Rev. Dr. C.A. Bartol, of Boston:—


I should only repeat your views in expressing my own. Animals, being our relations, have rights which we are bound to respect.

God speed your cause,


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From Dr. Edward Berdoe, of England:—


I have carefully read the pamphlet which you were good enough to send me, entitled Vivisection in America. There is not a statement therein which I cannot heartily endorse. So far from there being the slightest exaggeration, I can testify from my own knowledge that the atrocious cruelties which you condemn are daily and hourly performed in the physiological laboratories of the world. I do not speak rashly, for I have labored for the past ten years in combating the practices of vivisection in England, and have made it my business to ascertain precisely what is being carried on in medical schools and universities, in the name of the healing art, in America. It seems to me that you can hardly be engaged in a nobler work than in protesting against this great wrong. It strikes a blow at our common humanity and if tolerated by society will inevitably be fatal to its highest interests.

I am, my dear Sir,

Yours very faithfully,


Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England; Licentiate of the Royal College of Edinburgh; Member of the British Medical Association, etc. etc.

Extracts from a personal letter from Miss Frances Power Cobbe, author of “The Scientific Spirit of the Age,” “The Hopes of the Human Race,” “The Peak in Darien,” “Alone to the Alone,” “False Beasts and True,” “The Duties of Woman:”—


I have received the copy of Vivisection in America which you have kindly sent me, and am delighted with the

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handsome reprint. Your introductory letter also is excellent and gives the paper a good American imprimatur. I owe you hearty and grateful thanks for your powerful co-operation in this hard fight.

You will probably have seen the long report in the Worcester Sunday Telegram, of March 9, of the vivisection going on upon a frightful scale at Clark University. The fact to which I wish specially to direct your attention, if by chance you have not seen the paper, is that the poor, wretched dogs to be vivisected are regularly sent to this university from Boston. It seems to me possible that you may be able in Boston to look into this abominable trade.

Ever yours most truly,


From “Ouida:”—

4th April, 1890. MR. PHILIP G. PEABODY:

Dear Sir,—You cannot feel more deeply than I do the horrors of the sacrifices made to so-called science. Were the public everywhere not so apathetic, so selfish, and so ignorant as is unhappily the bulk of every nation, vivisection and all its congeners would be made impossible. The frightful experiments frequently lasting for months on the same creature, are wholly unknown to the chief part of the world, whilst most of those to whom they are known are afraid to seem “behind the age” if they oppose them, or turn their eyes away from what pains and distresses them, stupidly accepting the bland lies of physiologists. Physiology has become a trade—a lucrative pursuit. So long as the nations provide laboratories and salaries, so long will needy men climb by it into comfortable college chairs. The immense difficulty in our way is, 1st, the egotism of human nature, delighted to hope that disease may be banished and death deferred by some discovery; 2d, the dense apathy of it before all pain not inflicted upon itself. If you have in your city the back volumes of the Gentlemen's Magazine you will find an article of mine on vivisection. I forget the year, but think it was '82 or '83. Pray make

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any use of this letter that you choose, and attach my name to any declaration against scientific torture.

Please address only, “Mme. Ouida, Florence.”

Obediently yours,


From Baron von Weber, of Germany, Knight of the Royal Order of Saxony, etc.; President of the Great German League against Scientific Cruelty; Honorary Corresponding Member of the Society for the Protection of Animals from Vivisection:—

DRESDEN, 13th April, 1890. DEAR SIR:

I have read with great interest the valuable book you sent me, and I wish that you may be able to give it a large circulation between the Atlantic and the Pacific then it may be hoped that it shall awake the consciences of many honest people in the United States, and that numerous friends of true humanity will unite to put a stop to the abominable cruelties in the vivisectionist laboratories.

I remain, dear Sir,

Faithfully yours,


From Miss Fanny Davenport:—


My dear Sir,—Much as I wish to write at length on the subject of your pamphlet, I regret I have not the time to spare. However, these few words I will write, hoping they may in a small degree express the feelings I have upon the matter. Cruelty, to my mind, is as black a sin as any other sin so named, and that human creatures can inflict upon the helpless (those creatures sent by God for our use, our comfort, and our needs) such intentional pain, seems almost the capability of a brute. To me those who practise vivisection are no higher in their natures than the brute whom they make to suffer—a poor creature without

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the means of resenting, that cannot speak and cry for mercy, but whose sufferings must be as great as any mortal's. In my humble opinion, such practice should be a punishable offence, and I for one am with “The Society” heart and soul in its object, and if I can in any way further the good work, command me.

Faithfully yours,


From Col. Robert G. Ingersoll:—

May 27, 1890. PHILIP G. PEABODY, Esq.:
Boston, Mass.

My dear Friend,—Vivisection is the Inquisition—the Hell—of Science. All the cruelty which the human—or rather the inhuman—heart is capable of inflicting, is in this one word. Below this there is no depth. This word lies like a coiled serpent at the bottom of the abyss.

We can excuse, in part, the crimes of passion. We take into consideration the fact that man is liable to be caught by the whirlwind, and that from a brain on fire the soul rushes to a crime. But what excuse can ingenuity form for a man who deliberately—with an unaccelerated pulse with the calmness of John Calvin at the murder of Servetus—seeks, with curious and cunning knives, in the living, quivering flesh of a dog, for all the throbbing nerves of pain? The wretches who commit these infamous crimes pretend that they are working for the good of man that they are actuated by philanthropy; and that their pity for the sufferings of the human race drives out all pity for the animals they slowly torture to death. But those who are incapable of pitying animals are, as a matter of fact, incapable of pitying men. A physician who would cut a living rabbit in pieces—laying bare the nerves, denuding them with knives, pulling them out with forceps—would not hesitate to try experiments with men and women for the gratification of his curiosity.

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To settle some theory, he would trifle with the life of any patient in his power. By the same reasoning he will justify the vivisection of animals and patients. He will say that it is better that a few animals should suffer than that one human being should die; and that it is far better that one patient should die, if through the sacrifice of that one, several may be saved.

Brain without heart is far more dangerous than heart without brain.

Have these scientific assassins discovered anything of value? They may have settled some disputes as to the action of some organ, but have they added to the useful knowledge of the race?

It is not necessary for a man to be a specialist in order to have and express his opinion as to the right or wrong of vivisection. It is not necessary to be a scientist or a naturalist to detest cruelty and to love mercy. Above all the discoveries of the thinkers, above all the inventions of the ingenious, above all the victories won on fields of intellectual conflict, rise human sympathy and a sense of justice.

I know that good for the human race can never be accomplished by torture. I also know that all that has been ascertained by vivisection could have been done by the dissection of the dead, or at least of animals completely and perfectly under the merciful influence of ether. I know that all the torture has been useless. All the agony inflicted has simply hardened the hearts of the criminals, without enlightening their minds.

It may be that the human race might be physically improved if all the sickly and deformed babes were killed, and if all the paupers, liars, drunkards, thieves, villains, and vivisectionists were murdered. All this might, in a few ages, result in the production of a generation of physically perfect men and women; but what would such beings be worth,—men and women healthy and heartless, muscular and cruel—that is to say, intelligent wild beasts?

Never can I be the friend of one who vivisects his fellow-creatures. I do not wish to touch his hand.

When the angel of pity is driven from the heart; when

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the fountain of tears is dry,—the soul becomes a serpent crawling in the dust of a desert.

Thanking you for the good you are doing, and wishing you the greatest success, I remain,

Yours always,


Courteous replies have also been received from United States Senator Plumb, Mr. Charles Dudley Warner, Mr. Herbert Spencer (of England), Mr. George Kennan, United States Senator Allison, Rev. O.B. Frothingham, Mr. James Parton, Hon. Robert C. Winthrop, Ex-Attorney-General and Judge Devens, Rev. Andrew P. Peabody, Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, United States Senator Ingalls, Gen. and Ex-Gov. Benjamin F. Butler, and a large number of others, of which those printed above were all that the undersigned considered advisable to publish with this edition of the pamphlet. Most of those not printed express the warmest sympathy for the Anti-Vivisection cause, but the writers of some of them found it impossible, through extreme preoccupation of time, or from other causes, to comply with the request for written expressions of their sentiments for publication.


It is intended that all profits accruing from the sale of this work shall be donated to one of the Anti-Vivisection societies, or divided between a number of them.

It is requested that all persons, in any part of the United States, who are willing to give either labor, money, or the influence of their names toward the absolute prohibition of Vivisection, will send their names and addresses to the undersigned.


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