Results of the Convention.
The Convention to which the foregoing Report was submitted continued its sessions
two days, during which there was a free and full interchange of views. After a careful
consideration of the recommendations of its Committees,it adopted, with entire unanimity,
several important reports, the effect of which, it was believed, would be to promote har-
mony of action among the several Commissions, and give greater unity and efficiency to
all their efforts.
The Work Before Us.
This prospect of increased efficiency is gratifying in its timely appearance. Much as
has been done for the relief of the suffering among the Freed people, a greater work is just
before us. During this year the lines of the Union army, through which the slave only
has to pass to become free, have been more than doubled in extent. In the West they now
extend from Knoxville, Tennessee, to Little Rock, Arkansas, including both banks of the
Mississippi for hundreds of miles. Everyday along this extended line hundreds of those
homeless and dependent ones, beggared by the folly and wickedness of their rebel masters,
are cast upon the care of our Government and the benevolence of the North by that fortune
of war--nay, that providence of God--which favors our country's cause.
The season of sickness and suffering is drawing near. Exposure to the heavy dews,
frosts, and chilly rains of Autumn must produce disease. The dark days of Winter will
soon reach the camps on the Mississippi and in Tennessee, teeming with multitudes of the
old and young, and of women and children. Hundreds of these will be destitute of shelter,
of bedding, and of clothing, only so far as provided for through the contributions sent from
the North. The Government furnishes rations to these people, and provides transportation
for all goods designed for their use; our agents are ready to receive, forward, and Carefully
distribute supplies to those in need; but to the people of the North we must look and
appeal for the means with which to meet these urgent demands, and supplement the
efforts of our Government.
Immediate Effort Necessary.
To be available when most needed the bulk of the supplies should be procured at once.
The experience of last Winter admonishes us that shipments should be made while there
is a good stage of water, and large quantities of goods accumulated at safe depots in
Tennessee and on the Mississippi. At a time when there was fearful suffering in many
camps, and cries for relief were reaching us daily, more than thirty tons of supplies, which
reached us too late for timely shipment, were unavailable--part being ice-bound in the
Ohio, part detained in transitu by the crowded condition of the railroads, and part in our
store-rooms here for want of the means of transportation. Other Associations, with
means of relief in hand, found themselves equally powerless to reach the sufferers. An
earlier movement by the friends in the North might have prevented and would have
mitigated much of that suffering. We therefore urge upon all Auxiliary Societies, and all
others operating through our Commission, the necessity of an immediate and thorough
canvass of their respective localities. We appeal to Ministers of the Gospel and other
leading citizens to organize Auxiliary Societies where none exist, and at once enter upon
this great, good, and urgent work. We also request the co-operation of all such with our
duly-accredited Collecting Agents.
Contributions Most Needed.
1. SUPPLIES. Second-hand clothing, chiefly for women and children, blankets and
bedding, and materials from which these articles may be made--as linseys, jeans, sheetings,
stocking yarn, etc.; cooking utensils, buckets, basins, tin plates and cups, knives, spoons,
etc.; tea, farina, and other articles of food for the sick.
2. MONEY, in liberal sums, to furnish all articles needed not contributed in quantities
equal to the demand; to purchase tools and books; to establish schools, and employ com-
petent and efficient teachers; to pay freight on goods where freight is required; to defray
the expenses of the agents essential to the efficiency and completeness of our work; and to
meet the outlays incidental to an extensive system of benevolence.
Directions For Shipment.
All packages consigned to the General Agent for reshipment to particular points will
be forwarded with the least possible delay. Directions in such cases should be specific,
and the marks on the packages plain. Goods, clothing, etc., received without specific
directions, will be sent to our distributing agents to relieve the most needy points. The
place from which the contributions are forwarded should be marked upon each package,
and a list of the articles contained should be sent to the General Agent by mail. All
packages should be packed with care, in string boxes, with a list of the articles contained
inclosed, and forwarded to LEVI COFFIN, General Agent, Western Freedmen's Aid Commission,
corner Ninth and Walnut Streets, Cincinnati, Ohio. Money should be sent by express or mail to
J. F. LARKIN, Treasurer, Westen Freedmen's Aid Commission, 25 West Third-Street, Cincinnati,
Ohio. Letters upon the business of the Society may be addressed to REV. J. M. WALDEN,
Corresponding Secretary, Cincinnati, Ohio. Direct all letters to Post-Office Box No. 2,529.