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Minutes of the State Convention of the Colored Citizens of Ohio, Convened at Columbus, Jan. 15th, 16th, 17th and 18, 1851.

1851OH.11.pdf

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267

OHIO, 1851

the public Stage Coaches; also of the benefits of Colleges, Academies, and Seminaries; also of the Deaf and Dumb, Blind, and Lunatic Asylums, and Poor Houses,--therefore,

Resolved, That we look upon all those prohibitions as being unjust, and detrimental to the moral, intellectual and political elevation of the Colored people.

3. Whereas, congress has recently passed a bill termed the "Fugitive Slave Law," evincing on its part a determination to degrade us by robbing us of the last vestige of human rights, to wit: Trial by jury, and Writ of Habeas Corpus--those great bulwarks of human freedom, defended by the hero's blood, and patriotic exertions of the wise and good of every age; therefore,

Resolved, That we look upon this bill as being more unjust than any law ever passed before, and look upon those who voted in favor of this fiendish enactment as being more despotic than the pagan edicts of Nero3 or Caligula4--more cruel and Heaven-daring than any law makers that ever legislated, or practiced under heathen jurisprudence, even in the dark night of despotism that enshrouded France during her reign of terror.

4. Resolved, That we look upon the recent Fugitive Slave enactment as a hideous deformity in the garb of law--unconstitutional--opposed to the Institutions of the Free States--an outrage upon humanity--at war with the teachings of Christianity, and its place is first upon the catalogue of disgraceful, and abominable legislations that characterized the tyranny of Charles I., and we would urge upon the people of necessity of its immediate and unconditional repeal.

5. Resolved, That this convention shall instruct each County in the State to send up to each State Convention held in the State hereafter, as correct a statistical list of the population, wealth, moral and literary attainments, agricultural and mechanical pursuits, &c., as can possibly be obtained.

6. Whereas, A combination of efforts is the only efficient way of elevating any people,

Resolved, That this convention recommend to each County to appoint an Agent, whose duty it shall be to have the supervision of the County; to organize as many moral reform, and literary societies as he can, and to call county and other public meetings when circumstances demand it.

7. Resolved, That if the convention would insert a clause providing that every colored man who owned three hundred dollars worth of taxable property shall be entitled to his citizenship, it would be the means of quickly making us an industrious people.

8. Resolved, That the delegates composing this Convention shall be requested to write out a report in as short a form as is expedient, giving the population, wealth and condition of their respective counties.

9. Resolved, That these Reports be published in the Minutes.

10. Resolved, We, as a people, occupy a peculiar position in society, which position subjects us to all manner of menial services,

Resolved, That we recommend our people to give their sons and daughters useful trades, so that they may leave the blacking rooms, horse stables, steamboats, washtubs and other menial employments; and we also recommend our people to put their children under colored mechanics whenever they can find any who are capable of giving such instructions.

11. Whereas, The people from time immemorial assembled in Conventions to make declarations of right, and to consult the best means of improvement, both social and political; and whereas our present condition loudly calls on us for such an assemblage, and such declarations; and whereas we believe that it is in our power to do much towards pulling down the strongholds of prejudice, and toward destroying its accursed and more powerful ally, American Slavery, we do therefore adopt the following Resolutions as our unflinching sentiments:

12. Resolved, That we are deeply interested in the elevation of our people, and will sacrifice our money, give our influence, and lay aside all sectarian and party principles for the accomplishment of our greatest good.

13. Resolved, That we will persevere in our efforts for self elevation. "Elevation!" shall be our motto, and if we perish, we will perish in the conflict.

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