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Minutes of the State Convention, of the Colored Citizens of the State of Michigan, Held in the City of Detroit on the 26th and 27th of October, 1843 for the Purpose of Considering Their Moral & Political Condition, as Citizens of the State.

1843MI.9.pdf

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and political privileges and that any act or measure of Government, calculated to create distinctions in political rights, is hostile to this principle, and shall ever receive our entire opposition.

Resolved, That we believe in the principles avowed by the fathers of the Revolution of 1776, and for which they shed their blood, and that by these principles we are willing to have our civil and political rights determined.

Resolved, That we are fully sensible of the benefits of general education and freedom of opinion in all matters civil and religious, that by every means in our power, we will extend the benefits of education to the colored children of this city and State, and will wage war against tyranny in every form, whether emanating from a crowned head abroad, or an overbearing aristocracy at home.

Resolved, That we, the colored citizens of Michigan, claim the name and rights of American citizens; that we find ourselves at home in a land professing civil and religious liberty, and yet we are most unjustly debarred of any voice in making those laws, to which we and our property subject.

Resolved, That we will whisper in the ears of our white brethren, that the time is not far distant when they can no longer stifle in us that spirit of liberty which burst forth from the bosom of their ancestors and led them to bleed and die in its defence.

Resolved, That the colored citizens in every part of this State, be requested and urged to petition the Legislature of this State, year after year, until they extend to us those political rights and privileges which as American citizens we have a right to demand at their hands.

G. B. Blanks of Marshall offered the following resolutions through the business committee, which were unanimously adopted:

Resolved, That this Convention holds in remembrance, the name of Jabez M. Fitch, late of Marshall, State of Michigan, deceased, who exemplified in his practice, the sincerity of his professions in the cause of human rights--gave freely, of not only his money, but was willing to sacrifice (what most men prize more dearly,) his personal popularity, in his efforts to promote the welfare of his fellow beings.

Resolved, That while we reverence the names of Wilberforce2 and Clarkson, 3 as the great champions in the cause of human liberty, we also appreciate the efforts of those among us in Michigan, who, actuated by the same good spirit, are willing to be called Abolitionists, despite the sneers and the ridicule of men, who profess to believe that "all men are born free and equal, and possessed of certain inalienable rights," but who, by their conduct, give the lie to their professions.

Resolved, That in the self-denying life and martyr death of Lovejoy,4 we have the gratifying assurance that American Abolitionists are to be found who prove their faith by their works, and who are willing, if need be, to sacrifice worldly goods, and life itself, in the cause of the oppressed slave; and as the blood of the martyrs has heretofore proved to be the seed of the church, we trust the day is not far distant when the blood of Lovejoy may cry from the ground, and the millions now in slavery shall shout their jubilee song of deliverance from the bondage which oppresses them.

The following resolution of R. Gordon, after being supported by himself and others, was unanimously adopted.

Resolved, That our Government was instituted to mete out equal justice to all mankind; hence the tax on northern men to support slaveholders, is unjust, and therefore they having the largest proportion of representation should secure to themselves their lost rights, and show to the slave-holders that they will no longer submit to dough-faceism.5

The following resolution of H. Bibb, was ably supported by himself and others, and adopted.

Resolved, That we, the colored citizens of Michigan, be united in sentiment and action and never to consent to emigrate or be colonized from this, our native soil, while there exists one drop of African blood in bondage in these United States.

The following resolutions were offered through the business committee, by A. Derrick, and after being ably supported were adopted:


Resolved, That indolence is the parent of vice; it is a fact that cannot be denied, that the want of mental and manual employment often proves the

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