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Scripto | Transcribe Page
Minutes and address of the State Convention of the Colored Citizens of Ohio, convened at Columbus, January 10th, 11th, 12th, & 13th, 1849.
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to the resolutions.
Mr. Jenkins was opposed to the resolution, thought there were circumstances under which it would be beneficial' to emigrate.
L. Dow Taylor rose to correct Mr. Jenkins, thought he did not understand the true import of the resolution. Mr. Jenkins did not stand corrected. He said he was in favor of a scheme whereby we all might move out of the United States. He said he thought "there was a great change going on in the minds of the people." He prayed God that it would go on faster. We never can be anything in the United States. Mr. J. said that, two years ago while in the State of New York, he always had the benefit of two seats. Why was it?" said he. So far as he was concerned, he would always be found battling for his people.
J. L. Watson of Cuyahoga, said he was in favor of the resolution, and he was ready and willing to contest every point with any and all of its friends. He said our "Pilgrim Fathers," who first came to this country, were not colonized. "But what was it sir, that brought them here? Their indomitable love of liberty. Their unabated hatred to tyranny, and firm resolve to be freemen." "Go to Liberia," said Mr. W., "become President, Senator, Judge or what not. Come to this country and see how the founders of this scheme will treat you. I hope the resolution will pass."
Mr. Williams thought the resolution ought to be discussed with great care, as it affected not only this State, but every State in the Union. He said that he did not want to look up to the white man for every thing. "We must have a nationality. I am for going any where, so we can be an independent people.
Mr. Depp said he never would favor any scheme of colonization, he believed that God created all men free and equal. We have come here for our rights and our rights we will have. His motto should be, "Fight on, fight ever."
Rev. J. S. Thompson said he was in favor of the resolution. The principle of it was correct. He hoped it would pass.
Mr. J. Mercer Langston, here addressed the Convention as follows:
"Mr. President, I regret exceedingly that this question has been forced upon the Convention. But trusting as we do, in the omnipotence of truth, we are willing and ready to 'battle on and battle ever.' The resolution goes against the emigration of the colored people, free and bond, of the United States. I for one, sir, am willing, dearly as I love my native, land, (a land which will not protect me however,) to leave it, and go wherever I can be free. We have already drank too long the cup of bitterness and woe, and do gentlemen want to drink it any longer? The spirit of our people must be aroused, they must feel and act as men. Let them proclaim from hill-top and alley, the memorable sentence given birth to by a Roman slave, 'Homo sum atque nihil humani a me alienum puto.'" The prejudices, he said, were strong in, this country, against the colored man, and he was fearful that they would remain so. He thought we must have a nationality, before we can become anybody. "Why sir, the very fact of our remaining in this country, is humiliating, virtually acknowledging our inferiority to the white man; I hope sir, that gentlemen, will vote down the Resolution."
Mr. Wilson and several others took part in the discussion, but the being obliged to leave, can not report, what they said.
It was moved by Mr. Williams that the resolution be referred to a committee of three, which was preceded by a motion to have it laid upon the table, which last motion was lost. Mr. Williams' motion then prevailed, and the resolution was referred to a committee consisting of the following gentlemen.' Watson of Cuyahoga, J. Mercer Langston, and William H. Burnham.
The 21st resolution was then read, and discussion was going on when on motion, it was laid on the table, for the purpose of hearing a report from the chairman of the committee on obtaining the Hall of the House of Representatives. Mr. Jenkins then announced that the Hall had been obtained. The was received with three hearty cheers. And on motion of Mr. Jenkins, Messrs J. L. Watson of Cuyahoga and Wm. H. Day were appointed to address the citizens in the Hall of the House, this evening. A resolution then presented and adopted, that the officers of the Convention meet at place at half past six o'clock and march in order to the State House.
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