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Minutes of the Fifth Annual Convention for the Improvement of the Free People of Colour in the United States; Held by Adjournments, in the Wesley Church, Philadelphia; from the first to the fifth of June, inclusive; 1835.

1835PA 15.pdf

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On motion of J. D. Closson, seconded by Mr. Niger, Resolved, that the committee on publication cause to be printed 2000 copies of the minutes of the Convention, and each delegation be presented with 100 copies gratis. Adopted.

On motion of Mr. Morell, seconded by Mr. J. F. Cook, it was Resolved, that each delegation be a committee to nominate the Vice-Presidents and Corresponding Secretaries for their respective places.

The committee on the exclusion of colored youths from mechanical employment made the following report:

The committee to whom was referred the resolution to point out the most efficient means of promoting a general knowledge of those mechanical arts from the acquirement of which colored youths are excluded, beg leave most respectfully to report:

That their knowledge of the extent of this great barrier to our elevation, beyond the boundaries of the state of Pennsylvania, is very limited. And while they with pleasure acknowledge that there are several trades in this state accessible to colored youths, such as shoe makers, sail makers, carpenters, tailors &c., they regret at the same time, to say, that after acquiring these arts, they are with few exceptions, excluded from any patronage, except that given to them by those with whom they acquire the trade, who are mostly colored men; consequently, the chance of pursuing their respective occupations, is very limited. They also state, that there are many of the most important, lucrative arts, from which they are wholly excluded: such as jewellers, watch makers, machinists, and many others too tedious to mention. And as a remedy for this great evil they would recommend that this Convention instruct the several delegates to enforce on the minds of their constituents the necessity of encouraging manual labour schools, where our youths may acquire the necessary arts, and afterwards become proprietors of establishments, and impart encouragement and instruction to others. They would also have this Convention appeal, through its minutes, to abolitionists throughout the country, who are mechanics, to take colored youths, and teach them their respective trades, and encourage them in their pursuit.

Stephen Smith,

James Cornish,

Francis C. Lippins. } Committee.

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