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the outside pressure caused the people of the northern col-
onies to see that their political interests--yea, their very
existence, could be best conserved in the relaxation of the
severe censorship exercised over the slaves, which had
driven them to the very verge of successful rebellion.
Massachusetts led the way in this, as proven by her subse-
quent history, in every good cause. Listen to her in the
"The general court conceiving themselves bound by
the first opportunity to bear witness against the heinous
and crying sin of man-stealing, as also to prescribe such
a law for the future as may sufficiently deter all others be-
longing to us to have to do in such vile and odious courses,
justly abhorred by all good and just men, do order that
negro interpreters, with all others unlawfully taken, be by
the first opportunity, at the charge of the country for the
present, sent to their native country, and a letter with them
of the indignation of the court thereabouts, and justice
thereof, desiring our honored governor would please put
this order in execution."
This had a tendency to diminish the importation of
slaves into New England, and to soothe and comfort the
wounded spirit of the colored people in the east.
1770 TO 1812.
It was now 1770. It was evident that the struggle be-
tween the colonies and the mother country was at hand.
English troops were in our harbors, upon our rivers, in
the streets of the seaboard cities. Boston heard the first
gun of the revolution, and gave, as her first martyr, a brave
negro. On the 5th of March, 1770, the British soldiers
marched into King street, known now as State. Their
presence incensed the citizens, and a crowd, led by Crispus
Attucks, a negro, advanced upon the troops. Attucks