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History of Negro Citizenship
702                CHURCH REVIEW

completely it had outlawed the Negro, how' absolutely
he was at her mercy and how little that mercy meant,
proceeded to visit him with a series of outrages almost
without parallel in modern history. Within a year
after the surrender at Appomattox, it was estimated
that a thousand colored people and many white Union-
ists had been murdered in the South without even the
slightest attempt at prosecuting the murderers.
  But the crowning outrage was the massacre at New
Orleans, July 30, 1866. The occasion was the re-assemb-
ling of the Convention which gave the State of Louisi-
ana its free Constitution in 1864.  Its enemies charged
it with an intention to enfranchise the negro. But it
must be borne in mind that this convention was com-
posed wholly of loyal white citizens and that its propo-
sitions could not become law till ratified by the white
voters of the State. The riot which ensued when the
Convention assembled, in magnitude and cruelty, is
probably without a parallel in the history of the United
States. General Sheridan, then in command of the
Department, but absent at the time, said it was so un-
necessary and atrocious as to compel him to call it
"murder." Old citizens of New Orleans recall the
occasion with terror; official investigation proved the
complicity of Mayor Monroe and other officers of the
city government beyond a doubt.
  Fortunately this event turned out to be one of those
occasions in which God makes the wrath of man to
praise him. The great loyal North had been watching
the course of events with rare patience, yet with a grow-
ing solicitude. Under the policy of President Johnson
they had seen the task of restoring the seceded States to
the federal union entrusted to the authors of secession;
they had been asked- to believe that those who had shat-
tered Southern society in the interest of slavery, were
the proper persons to reconstruct it in the interest of
freedom. This experiment, the like of which is not
found in history or romance, had been fairly and fully


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African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, Vol. 15, Num. 3

History of Negro Citizenship


Volume:  15
Issue Number:  03
Page Number:  689
Date:  01/1899


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