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Scripto | Transcribe Page
Minutes of the First Colored Convention, held in the City of Portland, October 6, 1841.
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Griffin of Gardiner, Mrs. A. Jackson, of Brunswick, Mrs. Taylor and Mrs. E. Spencer, of Portland.
On motion of Mr. Niles, seconded by C. Pierre, that we adjourn to meet in this place at 2 o'clock this afternoon.
Adjourned with prayer by the president.
Wednesday afternoon, met according to the hour of adjournment. Prayer by Mr. J. Dickson. Minutes of the morning session read and accepted.
The following resolution was then offered by J. Meyers.
Resolved, That this convention recommend to our people throughout this state, that they give their support to the paper called the Colored American, printed in New York city; the editor of which is laboring to convince the world that universal freedom is necessary to the enjoyment of universal happiness.
A letter was then handed in, and read, which was from Mr. Thomas Cole, of Boston. The following is the letter:
Boston, Sept. 30, 1841.
To Messrs. John W. Lewis, Amos. N. Freeman, Abram W. Niles, Committee:
Gentlemen-I received your letter some time since, inviting me to attend a Convention to be held by the colored citizens of Portland, on the 6th of Oct. proximum, to take into consideration, subjects of deep interest, which concern your highest and best good. A press of engagements has precluded an earlier reply, and I am only able to offer for your consideration, such reflections as have been snatched amid the hurried hours of business.
I sincerely regret that I shall be deprived of meeting with you, I am aware that the occasion is worthy of the choicest efforts of the most talented men among us, (I have no doubt you will have them,) to meet the demands of the occasion.You meet not for the purposes of empty pageant, nor yet for rejoicing; but to deliberate upon the most successful means of carrying forward this all-important work, the elevation and enfranchisement of colored Americans. You meet to give each other the right hand of fellowship, and to devise means for your moral political and social advancement. The subjects which you have chosen for your deliberation, are 1. Education. 2. Temperance. 3. Moral Reform. 4. Agriculture. 5. Mechanical pursuits. 6. The position we as a people ought to take at this important crisis.
Education teaches us how to foster the eergies of the mind. Yet how many among colored Americans have become useless from a want of cultivation. Here then, must the remedy be applied. Just in proportion to the freedom and the energy with which the intellectual faculties are developed, do a people advance m the attainment of rights and the enjoyment of social happiness.
We ought to establish more well regulated lyceums and literary associations with libraries of judicious books. We do not attempt self education, that education which is the best of all, and the only education that is of much use, and which ev
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