OHS home

Ohio Historical Society / The African American Experience in Ohio, 1850-1920








PreviousPrevious Item Description Next Next
Proceedings, Held in the City of Columbus, January 16-18, 1856

maniacs, are turned into the streets to die, as     warrior in his burnished armor to the conflict
has been done in the metropolis of your State.      against Error and Oppression.  On earth's
In your public schools, too, needless and inju-     broad arena--through Time's revolving cycles
rious distinctions are made.  The duty of the       --this warfare has been continuous; and now
State is the same to all her children.  None are    here, in this most brilliant star in the galaxy of
so insignificant as to be forgotten; none so        nations, where Christianity and and civiliza-
important as to be prefered before others. The      tion, with their inestimable accompaniments
interests of the State demand that all should be    and proclivities, have taken their abode and
educated alike.                                     add their benign light to her stellate brightness
  In conclusion, we will call your attention to     --bands of her offspring, in very truth her
the duties incumbent on you as legislators--to      own, despised, persecuted and crushed, as-
pass such laws as will increase the happiness,      semble in scattered fragments to take the oath
prosperity and security of the people of the        of fealty to Freedom, and swear eternal enmity
State; to remove all just causes of distatisfac-    to Oppression; to enter into a bond sacred and
tion.                                               inviolable, ever to wage interminable intellec-
  Many may indulge the hope that the colored        tual and moral war against the demon, and to
population is destined to pass away from your       demand the restoration of their birthright,
midst and so refuse our prayer.  But the hope       Liberty--kindred of Deity.  Nor is the path to
is a delusion.  We are a part of the American       victory strewn with flowers; obstacles formi-
people, and we and our posterity will forever       dable, and apparently insurmountable, arise
be a constituent part of your population.  If       ominously before even the most hopeful and
we are deprived of education, of equal politi-      ardent.
cal privileges, still subjected to the same de-       As the Alpine avalanche sweeps tumultuous-
pressing influences under which we now suffer.      ly adown the mountain,overwhelming the pea-
the natural consequences will follow; and the       sant and his habitation, so the conglomeration
State, for her planting of injustice, will realp    of hatred and prejudice against our race,
her harvest of sorrow and crime.  She will          brought together by perceptible accumulation,
contain within her limits a discontented popu-      augmented and fostered by religion and science
lation--dissatisfied, estranged--ready to wel-      united, sweeps with seeming irresistible pow-
come any revolution or invasion as a relief, for    er toward us, menacing complete annihilation.
they can lose nothing and gain much.  A con-        But, should these things exercise a retarding
trary course of policy will enable us to keep       influence upon our progressive efforts?  Let
step with our white fellow citizens in the          American religion teach adoration to the demon
march of improvement, disaffection will cease,      Slavery, whom it denominates God: at the
and our noble State stand securely defended         end, the book of record will show its falsity or
by the loving hearts of all her sons.               truth.   Let scientific research produce elabo-
  In behalf of the State Convention of colored      rate expositions of the inferiority and mental
men-         PETER H. CLARK,  Cha'n.                idiosyncrasy of the colored race; one truth,
  Charles Langston,                                 the only essential truth, is uncontrovertible:--
  Charles A. Yancey,                                The Omnipotent, Omniscient God's glorious
  D Jenkins,                                        autograph--the seal of angels--is written on
  John Williams,                                    our brows, that immortal characteristic of
  Solomon Grimes,   Committee.                      Divinity--the rational, mysterious and in-
  Anderson Flinn,                                   explicable soul, animates our frames.
  John M. Langston,                                   Then press on!  Manhood's prerogatives are
  John J. Gaines,                                   yours by Almighty fiat.  These prerogatives
  L D Taylor,                                       American Republicanism, disregarding equity,
  The memorial was received and read, and           humanity, and the fundamental principles of
referred to a select committee consisting of the    her national superstructure, has rendered  a
following gentlemen: Messrs. Canfield, Brown,       nonentity,while on her flag's transparencies and
and Taylor of Geauga.                               triumphal arches, stood beautifully those great,
       The following address was presented by Wm.   noble words: Liberty and Independence--Free
      Government--Church and State!  And still
Harris, in behalf of the Ladies' Anti-Slavery       they stand exponents of American character--
Society of Delaware:                                her escutcheon wafts them on its star-spangled
                     DELAWABE, OHIO, 1855.          surface, to every clime--each ship load of emi-
                                                    grants from monarchical Europe, shout the
To the Convention of Disfranchised Citizens o       words synonyma with Americans, their first
  Ohio:                                             paen in "the land of the free."  Briery moun-
  GENTLEMEN:--Convened as you are in the            tain, sparkling river, glassy lake, give back
Capital City of our State -- a State great in       the echoes, soft and clear as if the melody was
wealth, power, and political influence, an avow-    borrowed from the harps of angels.   But
ed devotee of Freedom, and a constituent part       strange incongruity!  As the song of Freedom
of a Christian Democratic Confederacy -- to         verberates and reverberates through the north-
concoct measures for obtaining those rights and     ern hills, and the lingering symphony quivers
immunities of which unjust legislation has de       on the still air and then sinks away into silence,
prived you, we offer this testimonial of our        a low deep wail, heavy with anguish and des-
sympathy and interest in the cause in which         pair, rises from the southern plains, and the
you are engaged--a cause fraught with infinite      clank of chains on human limbs mingles with
importance--and also express our earnest hope       the mournful cadence
that such determination and invincible courage        What to the toiling millions there, is this
may be evinced by you in assembly as are            boasted liberty?  What to us is this organic
requisite to meet the exigencies of the times.      body-this ideal reduced to reality-this institu-
  Truth, Justice and Mercy, marshaling their        tion of the land?--a phantom, shadowy and in-
forces, sound the tocsin which summons the          distinct -- a disembodied form, impalpable to


Download High Resolution TIFF Image
PreviousPrevious Item Description Next Next

OHS Archives/Library Pamphlet Collection

Proceedings, Held in the City of Columbus, January 16-18, 1856


http://www.ohiohistory.org || Last modified
Ohio History Center 800 E. 17th Ave. Columbus, OH 43211 © 1996-2011 All Rights Reserved.