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Scripto | Transcribe Page
Proceedings of the Council of the Georgia Equal Rights Association. Assembled at Augusta, Ga. April 4th, 1866. Containing the Address of the President, Captain J. E. Bryant, and Resolutions Adopted by the Council.
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I have received a communication from the Union League of Macon, asking that they may be allowed to unite with The Equal Rights Association, and retain their present organization and constitution. I would recommend that they be invited to unite with us, retaining their organization, providing they adopt the constitution of Subordinate Associations, with the privilege of retaining so much of their present constitution as does not conflict with the constitution of Subordinate Associations.
Associations have been organized in Bibb, Burke, Greene and Richmond counties. Associations have been formed in Richmond county, and one in each of the other counties mentioned. I have received from these Associations $320,90. I have expended $269,21 and now have on hand $51,69. I submit my books to you for inspection, and also the books of Mr Beard, general Agent. I would suggest that the funds belonging to the paper, be kept separate from those of the Association, and that Mr Beard be appointed Treasurer, with the understanding, that he shall give a bond for the faithful performance of his duty, and that he be instructed to deposit in the Freedmans Saving's Bank of Augusta, each week, the money remaining on hand.
It is your constitutional duty to decide in what sum the Treasurer of the State Association shall give a bond for the faithful performance of his duties. I would suggest that he be instructed to deposit all funds that may be intrusted to him, belonging to the Association, in the Freedmen s Saving's Bank of Augusta.
The most important business, that will come before you, will be to devise ways and means for sustaining the Loyal Georgian, the organ of our Association. I have with much difficulty sustained it thus far, and, unless you assist me in raising funds, we shall be obliged to suspend its publication. I have loaned money to the paper from the Treasury of the Association, and have borrowed money upon the credit of the Association. I was obliged to do this or suspend its publication. I ask that you will freely discuss this whole subject, and give me instructions, by which I shall in future be governed. In the absence of instructions, I have done what I considered for the good of the cause.
Gentlemen: I expect that much goodwill result from your deliberations. Important interests have been intrusted to you ; thousands of your people in this State look to you for advice; yours is a noble work, to assist in elevating your race, a race that has been oppressed for centuries But few of them are educated; but few have houses or lands; families have been separated and are to be united. Your work will be to encourage education ; to assist in uniting families, long separated, and in providing good homes for them; but the great work before you is to assist in educating your people and in securing for them equal rights. Northern friends are assisting you, and, I trust, the day is not far distant, when you will have Southern friends, who will unite in this great and good work. To enable you
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