William Lloyd Garrison: APUSH Historical Figures You Should Know

Picture of William Lloyd Garrison

While preparing for the APUSH exam, there are lots of historical figures you need to review. William Lloyd Garrison is one of these historical figures. He lived during the Civil War. Here are some William Lloyd Garrison APUSH facts you should review for the exam.

Who Was William Lloyd Garrison?

William Lloyd Garrison was an outspoken abolitionist. He published an anti-slavery newspaper called The Liberator. It called for freedom for all slaves immediately. Additionally, he wanted the North to secede from the Union. Thereby, Northerners could separate themselves from the slave-owning South.

The newspaper’s main audience was freed slaves. However, people from around the world read it. William Lloyd Garrison continued to publish the newspaper until the 13th Amendment passed in Congress.

In addition, he founded the American Anti-Slavery Society. The organization had over 250,000 members and 1,350 chapters throughout America. Members worked to emancipate slaves in America and give them equal rights.


William Lloyd Garrison: December 10, 1805 – May 24, 1879
The Liberator: 1831- 1865
American Anti-Slavery Society: 1833-1870

Why Is He Important to Know?

William Lloyd Garrison was the voice of abolitionism. People who were against slavery loved him. But, people who supported slavery hated him. Either way, he worked hard to spread the idea of freedom for all.


  • Arthur Tappan- He co-founded the American Anti-Slavery Society with William Lloyd Garrison.
  • Frederick Douglass- After escaping slavery, Frederick Douglass became one of the leaders of the abolitionist movement. He was also a key leader of the American Anti-Slavery Society.
  • Isaac Knapp- As co-founder of The Liberator, he wrote many editorials for the newspaper.
  • Elizabeth Cady Stanton- Elizabeth Cady Stanton is a well-known woman’s right leader. She met William Lloyd Garrison at the World Anti-Slavery Convention.


  • The 13th Amendment- After Congress passed the 13th Amendment on December 6, 1865, it ended slavery in the United States.
  • American Civil War- The American Civil War lasted from 1861 to 1865. Slave-owners in the South seceded from the Union. This lead to a war between the North and South to reunite the Union and end slavery.
  • Women’s Suffrage Movement- The Women’s Suffrage Movement began in 1848 and ran until women received the right to vote in 1920 with the ratifying of the 19th Amendment.

William Lloyd Garrison APUSH Practice Question 1

The reform William Lloyd Garrison supported was imposed as a result of what?
a. the Emancipation Proclamation
b. the Civil Rights Act of 1818
c. the 14th Amendment
c. the Reconstruction Act

Answer: A. William Lloyd Garrison called for the freedom of all slaves. Therefore, the Emancipation Proclamation helped bring about his cause. Unfortunately, it was years later before all slaves were free.

William Lloyd Garrison APUSH Practice Question 2

William Lloyd Garrison worked to:
a. prevent the growth of slavery in the U.S.
b. return former slaves to Africa.
c. outlaw the slave trade.
d. stop slavery right away.

Answer: D. William Lloyd Garrison believed that slavery was a crime against humanity. As a result, he wanted to end it right away. He felt so strongly about it that he wanted the Northern states to secede from the Union.

William Lloyd Garrison APUSH Practice Question 3

When the American Anti-Slavery Society divided, those that continued to support William Lloyd Garrison:
a. were mainly former slaves living in the Northern states of America.
b. lived in border states, including Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, and Missouri.
c. focused solely on slavery and trying to emancipate slaves right away.
d. supported the idea of giving women the right to vote.

Answer: D. Although all members wanted to free the slaves, some also believed in giving women the right to vote. William Lloyd Garrison led the cause. And, those that agreed with him continued to follow his leadership when the organization became divided.

As you study the American Civil War, don’t forget to consider the possible William Lloyd Garrison APUSH questions you may need to answer. Moreover, work to understand how he helped push the cause of freedom forward and give everyone the right to vote.

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  • Jamie Goodwin

    Jamie graduated from Brigham Young University- Idaho with a degree in English Education. She spent several years teaching and tutoring students at the elementary, high school, and college level. She currently works as a contract writer and curriculum developer for online education courses. In her free time, she enjoys running and spending time with her boys!

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