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Scripto | Transcribe Page
Proceedings of the First State Convention of the Colored Citizens of the State of California. Held at Sacramento Nov. 20th 21st, and 22d, in the Colored Methodist Chuch [sic].
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characters, as a people, shall fully combine the elements of learning, sound morality, and wealth, we shall be free and respected by all.
J. J. Moore, T. M. D. Ward, } Committee.
Report of the Committee appointed to address the Colored Citizens of California, upon the subjects of Agriculture and Mining, and the importance of turning their attention to them:
Brethren: In discharging the duty of addressing you upon these great branches of industry, it is our wish to call your attention to reflect carefully upon them, that a lively interest may be awakened.
The agricultural and mining interests of California are rich and fruitful themes; Heaven has indeed been bounteous in heaping blessings upon our State. The application of intelligent skill and industry, in developing its riches, will make it a second Eden.
In the rapid view we shall take of the subject of Agriculture, we can only touch a few important points, invite your attention to the subject generally, in the hope you may become familiar with the statistics and the practice of this pursuit. Facts are abundant, going to prove that agriculture as a pursuit, is the road to wealth, honor and independence; the time has come when we must become owners and cultivators of the land. The mortifying fact is ever before us that colored people, in the free States especially, are rather the consumers than the producers of the wealth of the soil.
The advantages held out by the General Government, as regards the settlement of the public domain, constitute a cheering and encouraging fact. It has been said, "that we cannot settle upon and become possessors of the public lands upon those terms held forth by the General Government." We have taken pains to ascertain the facts upon this point, and we are proud to inform you that we can find no facts going to show that may not settle upon and lawfully possess portions of Government lands. We would respectfully urge you to use all lawful means to secure for yourselves right and just claims to the ownership of the soil, as a means to usefulness, respectability and wealth.
We would briefly invite your attention to the mining business in California. Mining, like agricultural pursuits, gives those engaged in it, a more honorable position than menial service.
The gold mines of this State must continue for years the source of almost unaccountable wealth. These are open to all; none who are respectable, honest and industrious, are excluded therefrom.
The tide of emigration continues to pour its thousands upon our shores. The time may come when we shall regret that we allowed the golden opportunities to be lost. Hundreds of thousands of acres of mineral lands now unoccupied, in a few years will be worth fortunes, will be sought after, but not obtained.
We have great hopes in the developing and increasing intelligence, energy and enterprise of our people. We urge you again, as opportunities offer, engage in agriculture and mining; honorable employments; they will promote our best interests.
George W. Booth, Alfred J. White, George A. Duvall, Albert Vaniel, Daniel Mahoney, } Committee.
The following Address was prepared by J. H. Townsend, in behalf of the State Executive Committee:
The colored citizens of this Commonwealth, would respectfully represent before you, their state and condition, and they respectfully ask a candid and careful investigation of facts in relation to their true character.
Our population numbers about 6,000 persons, who own capital to the amount of near $3,000,000. This has been accumulated by our own industry, since we migrated to the shores of the Pacific.
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