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Proceedings of the National Convention of the Colored Men of America: held in Washington, D.C., on January 13, 14, 15, and 16, 1869.

1869 National Convention in Washington DC 40.pdf

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34

the authority vested in me, do hereby proclaim that each and all of the said amendments aforesaid, have become valid to all intents and purposes as a part of the Constitution of the State of Iowa.

In Testimony Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of the State of Iowa. Done at Des Moines, this eighth day of a December, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty. eight, of the independence of the United States the ninety-third, and of the State of Iowa the twenty-second.

SAMUEL MERRILL.

By the Governor:

Ed. Wright, Secretary of State.

December 17, 1868.

Mr. Boston, of Pennsylvania, called attention to the fact that he had submitted a resolution to the Business Committee, on the subject of public schools in Pennsylvania, and of Hon. Thaddeus Stevens's connection therewith; he desired to know why there had been no report on that subject from the Committee.

The Chair stated that the Committee would doubtless report yet upon the subject.

The following was presented, but no action was taken:

Whereas the removal of the Freedmen's Bureau from the Southern States, and especially from the States of Virginia and Mississippi, and Texas, leaves the colored people in those States wholly at the mercy of their enemies, homeless, landless, uneducated, and without clothes, by reason of their not being paid for their labor since they were made free by the Government; therefore be it

Resolved, That a petition be presented to the Congress of the United States by this Convention that. they make some provision for the starving colored people in those States.

SAMUEL F. KELSOE, Virginia,

R. D. Beckly, Virginia,

FIELDS COOK,

THOS. W. STRINGER, Mississippi.

Mr. H. C. Moulson, of New York. submitted the following:

We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they re endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

The present condition of our country tells us plainly that the above words are far from being made effective. A large majority of the citizens of the United States are denied those rights which were given them by their Creator. They are taxed without being represented; they are subject to trials by juries which are not their peers; they they are murdered without having redress, and are taxed to support common schools while their children are denied the privilege of attending those in their respective wards; they are called upon for the military of their country without receiving proper protection of the country, and without any incentives whatever for being commissioned officers. These grievances belie the Declaration of Independence by which the American people profess to be governed. We have been laboring for the last two and a-half centuries to enrich the country, without having received a particle of remuneration. We have been promised our rights, but have not received them. and we do not now counsel any other means than thoughts, words, and the integrity of the Republican party.

We demand all the rights and prerogatives enjoyed by our white fellow-citizens. We have lived here two and a half centuries, and know only this country as our home.

Here we have a few cherished memories and many sad ones; yet our country is dear to us with all her faults.

We demand these as natives of this country. We demand them from our long, unrequited toil. We demand them from our part in the recent rebellion, with which millions more of dollars and thousands more of precious lives would have been expended. We demand them for the safety of the Republican party, with which we shall ally ourselves so long as It continues to battle for righteousness and justice. We demand them as men, children of a common Father.

Whereas the true basis of a democratic republican government is equal and impartial suffrage; therefore, be it

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