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- What Did They Eat? Where Did They Stay?
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- The First National Convention
- The "Conventions" of the Conventions: Political Rituals
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- Equality Before the Law: California Black Convention Activism, 1855-65
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Scripto | Transcribe Page
Proceedings of the Colored State Convention assembled in St. Paul's A. M. E. Church, Lexington, Ky., November 26.
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themselves individual murderers when they can sit on the juries and hang us under the form of law. It would be better thus than openly defying law and terrifying women and children and teaching your own children lessons of blood and unfairness; for these things come back to the roost from whence they sprung; and murder grows in the blood of your race.
"Vice is a monster of so frightful mien,
As, to be hated, needs but to be seen;
Yet, seen too oft, familiar with her face,
We first endure, then pity, then embrace."
There are city charters in which the word "white" appears, contrary to the spirit and letter of the amendment of the United States Constitution. We hereby petition that such a word and all other words as describe one race and proscribe the other, denying us the full rights of a citizen of the Commonwealth, be stricken from said charters. We are kept from civil appointments on the ground that the charters are drawn against our interests. In general terms we hope every word will be stricken from our laws that gives advantage to one citizen over another.
We do respectfully ask that such laws will be made as will permit colored citizens, so desiring, to organize military companies, the same as white citizens. There is no fear of an improper use of arms and accoutrements. We are willing to defend the honor of the State when called on so to do. The martial spirit is common to all men. Playing soldier on the time of peace prepares officers for time of war. the tap of the drum, the toot of the horn, the unfurling of a flag to flame the slumbering fires of patriotism and devotion.
THE JUSTICE OF OUR CAUSE.
We trust that we have given no offense to any one. Our cause is in court and we desire to make a full defense that it fail not for want of advocacy. We pray you to throw down every barrier that keeps us from making the most of ourselves. Do the noblest thing your hearts prompt. The best thing to leave
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