Smith, Gerrit, 1797–1874, American reformer, b. Utica, N.Y. He spent much of his fortune in various reforms, most notably abolition. He was an organizer of the Liberty party and was candidate for governor of New York in 1840. A congressman in 1853, he resigned in 1854. He again ran for governor in 1858. He is thought to have aided John Brown in planning the Harpers Ferry raid.
See biographies by O. B. Frothingham (1878, repr. 1969) and R. V. Harlow (1939, repr. 1972).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
More on Gerrit Smith from Infoplease:
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Social Reformers