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Proceedings of the Colored Men's Convention of the State of Michigan, Held in the City of Detroit ,Tuesday and Wednesday, Sept. 12th and 13th, '65, with Accompanying Documents. Also, the Constitution of the Equal Rights League of the State of Michigan.
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BLACK STATE CONVENTIONS
Adrian, September 8th, 1865.
The "Lenawee County Equal Rights League," located in the City of Adrian, to the State Convention of Colored Men, Assembled in the City of Detroit, Send Greeting:
Fellow-Citizens:--Identified with you in all that is embraced in the objects contemplated by the Colored National Convention that assembled in Syracuse October 4th, 1865, permit me through our delegates, (whose appointment and proper credentials are herewith presented,) to assure you of the united and friendly interest felt by each and all of us as brothers working in the common cause of a loyal but oppressed people, determined henceforth to use all legal and peaceful means to secure the ends of a perfect equality before the law, that guarantees to all men the right to "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness."
We pray that the blessing of Almighty God may rest upon your united labors while in convention, and that pursuing calm and deliberate means to ensure the ends proposed by our National League, you may be permitted to realize the momentous interests involved in the questions of the day, and the grand future, rapidly unfolding before the colored people of the United States, unlimited by mere geographical boundaries.
For and on behalf of the "Lenawee County Auxiliary League," to permit me to subscribe myself,
Very respectfully, yours, &c.,
James Fields, President.
LENAWEE COUNTY LEAGUE
RESOLUTIONS ON THE FIFTH RESOLUTION OF THE NATIONAL CONVENTION
The Lenawee County League respectfully beg leave to lay before the members of the Michigan State Equal Rights League when assembled in convention at Detroit, the following views entertained by the majority of the members of the Lenawee County League, together with the why and wherefore they felt impelled to pass the resolution herein contained, founded on the perusal of a resolution contained on the 34th page of the National Convention minutes, and the 5th resolution in relation to the freedmen of the South, and our efforts in their behalf.
The advocates of the freedmen of the South maintain that the nominal freemen of the North and West, by the resolution above alluded to, have renewed their past pledge to labor for the freedmen's elevation by contributing educational facilities at the South, even if the elected franchise at the North be left to a more distant day.
Through the long night of slavery and oppression (say they) that has obscured the moral atmosphere of the colored race on this continent, the nominally free people of the North have strove to identify themselves with the four millions of bondmen and women of the South--resisting manfully pro-slavery pressure at the South, as well as its supple tool, prejudice against color at the North. Now protesting against the passage of oppressive and unjust enactments, both State and National, at the bidding of the slave power.
At times flying before the wrath of pro-slavery mobs; wrought up to frenzy by designing politicians and demagogues for their own base purposes; hunted like the partridge on the mountains, their manhood crushed and humbled in the dust; their homes desolated; the chastity of their wives and daughters violated--nay their very lives sacrificed in the very sanctuary of the living God.
Through all these horrors, and others still untold, have the free people of color passed in their Northern homes, still asserting their undying love for their brethren in Southern bonds, and their fixed resolve to maintain the principle of the universal brotherhood of man, irrespective of color or country, and that come weal or woe, come life or death, to labor and to wait for the entire civil and political liberty of themselves and brethren of the South.
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