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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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in Durham there are two families which own farms estimated to be worth three thousand dollars.
PORTLAND. The number of colored people in this city are about 4 hundred and thirty, of whom one hundred and twenty three are seamen; five hair dressers, two joiners, two cloth dressers, three hack drivers; one established school with about sixty scholars, one private, numbering about twenty; one temperance society numbering one hundred and fifty members; two female societies, numbering thirty four, one Church, (Congregationist) consisting of fifty members, one Sabbath school numbering about fifty six scholars; the whole amount of real estate, supposed to be owned, is about thirteen thousand dollars.
The committee on Anti-Slavery reported as follows:
Your Committee, to whom was referred the subject of Anti-Slavery, report that they have taken the subject into consideration, and are of the opinion that the anti-slavery cause has strong claims on the colored pople of this country and feel that it is the duty of every colored man, woman and child, to co-operate as far as possible with the existing anti-slavery organization, so far as those organizations are anti- slavery.
Your Committee would recommend, that the colored people of Portland, and in every place where there is a sufficient number, to form themselves into a society. But as there is not sufficient time to mature the subject and organize judiciously, we think it inexpedient to form a State Society during this session of the convention.
All of which is respectfully submitted.
J.W. Lewis, J. Hill, Henry C. Huston, Committee.
On motion, Resolved, that the Rev. Mr. Lewis be appointed a Delegate from this Convention, to attend the State Anti-Slavery Convention, to be held in Hallowell some time in February next.
On Motion, Adjourned to meet at 2 o'clock.
Afternoon Session. Met according to adjournment. Prayer by Mr. J. Hill. Minutes of the preceding session read, and approved.
On Motion, Resolved, that we view with righteous indignation, the Spirit of the Clerical body at their meeting held in Baltimore, a few months since; in which it appears, that they would have the colored people driven from this country to the pestilential Climate of Africa; viewing this act, to be the effect of the unholy spirit of prejudice against the colored people, we pledge ourselves to stand by each other, and refuse to leave the land of our birth to gratify our enemies in their selfishness, and hatred towards us.
The Committee on Agriculture, and Mechanical Arts, reported the following—
Your committee, to whom was referred the subject of Agriculture and the Mechanical arts, report that they have attended to the duty assigned them. They have given the matter a careful investigation, and report in favor of the organization of a society. The reasons which have led them to this conclusion are, that the grand secret of the improvement among the white population of this country, is the united effort among them, in associations. Your committee are of the opinion that a few years might materially alter the condition of the colored people of this country, and promote the welfare of the rising generation, if the foundation for action could be judiciously laid. We therefore report a preamble and constitution for the consideration of this meeting. Respeetfully submitted.
J. W. Lewis, Eben Ruby, E. Myres, Committee.
PREAMBLE. Believing that it is the imperious duty of the free colored people of this country no longer to submit quietly to the unholy
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