DIED NOVEMBER, 21, 1886; AGED 81.
It is only the simplest truth to say that Mr. Wright was one of the earliest, most talented, most courageous, most indefatigable, most self-sacrificing, and most efficient of that little band of heroes who first compelled the people of this country to look in the face the great question of the abolition of slavery. Faithful and heroic at the outset, he was faithful and heroic to the end. Although it was very easy for him to make a short and pungent speech, he was not given to making long speeches; and therefore never acquired such a reputation for eloquence as did some of his associates. But I think it will be acknowledged that he could put more vim and fire into a paragraph than any of them.
In private life, he was one of the most unselfish, generous, sympathetic, and courageous of men. Ready to do his duty everywhere, as regardless of the smiles, as of the frowns, of what is called "society."
A moral and intellectual hero, he has laid down his arms only with his life.
L. S. [Lysander Spooner]
- Lysander Spooner, “Elizur Wright,” Liberty 3, no. 18 (November 28, 1885): 4.