Flavel Sutliff

Flavel Sutliff (24 June 1811 – 5 Feb. 1843) attorney and abolitionist, was the youngest of the surviving children of Samuel Jr. and Ruth (Granger) Sutliff. He became a lawyer and a member of the Whig Party. Sutliff was a staunch abolitionist, and this hindered his political opportunities. In 1839, he ran for prosecuting attorney and lost. After his father’s death, Sutliff spent most of his time with his mother and resided in Jefferson, Ohio. He never married. Sutliff became partners with abolitionist lawyer and politician Joshua Reed Giddings in 1837, but the arrangement ended within two years. Prior to the split, Sutliff was one of Giddings’s most trusted friends and confidants, and Giddings wrote to him frequently of events in Washington. Sutliff, and his brothers, were long-time supporters of the Whig party, but tensions over the degree of abolitionism caused Sutliff to part ways with the party, at which time he began to take a greater interest in spiritual matters. Sutliff was a strong adherent to the Graham diet following its principles and dietary restrictions so closely that many in his family believed it to be responsible for his early death at the age of 32. George Washington Julian, The Life of Joshua R. Giddings (N.p.: A.C. McClurg and Company, 1892,); James Brewer Steward, Joshua R. Giddings and the Tactics of Radical Politics (Cleveland, OH: Press of Case Western Reserve University, 1970); Charlotte Rodabaugh, “Go-ahead Men: Yankee Westerners Test Masculine Bonds in the Early American Republic,” (PhD diss., West Virginia University, 2011).