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Proceedings of Consultation Convention of 350 leading Colored Men of Georgia. Held in Macon, Georgia, January 25th and 26th, 1888
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MINUTES OF CONSULTATION CONVENTION
WHEREAS, Working convicts in inclement weather, and putting long sentence upon convicts for trivial offenses, is against the letter and spirit of the law, as well as common humanity; therefore be it
Resolved, That we recommend the separation on all county chain-gangs, of male and female convicts, and that they be required to work not more than 10 hours daily; that they be furnished with clothes sufficient to have more frequent changed; that they have some one to preach to them at least once a month.
2. That we recommend that females be confined in some private enclosure and there be required to do such work as is suitable for their sex and that under no circumstance, men and women be allowed to work together.
3. That the president of this body appoint a committee from the different parts of the State to ascertain more fully the workings of the chain-gang.
4. That we appeal to every citizen of Georgia to unite with us in having this great evil corrected.
Signed, J. M. Bunn: Chairman
J.J. Lee, J.W. Williams, E. Brown,
J.D. Donoway, L. Jordan, J.E. Tripp,
Nelson Lowe, M. D Dennard, M. E. DeLaney,
A. A. Mathis, A.A. Gordon, J.B. Davis,
J.S. Mason, G.W. Tally, S.W. West,
Whitman Chapman, Committee.
Maj. S. W. Easley submitted the report of committee on
WHEREAS, Being, very largely, the producing element—bone and sinew, at least,—of the state, the most important of her prosperity and glory, and the class that should be subjected to as few deprivations of the earmarks of freemen as possible, and,
WHEREAS, The law prescribes only intelligence and respectability as the qualifications for the jury services, frowning upon all discrimination, in its sweeping provisions on this subject, that would flow from race, or previous conditions of servitude; and
WHEREAS, Inheriting this privilege, immunity and right, as one of the great foundation rocks upon which our superstructure of government is erected, hence it is our stern duty to insist, as defender of the faith of republican civilization and liberty, to be called to the discharge of this responsibility and service; therefore be in
Resolved, That the colored citizens throughout the State be advised to pass resolutions at their monthly or yearly gathering, urging in a respectful way, the jury commissioners to revisit the list, so as to draw colored tax-payers to the discharge of this great function of citizenship, remembering that republican liberty is the result of ceaseless agitation, and they be admonished to continue the discussion of this righteous cause of remonstrance, until their rights in the premises, are freely accorded and acknowledged.
Signed, J.W. Lyons; Chairman
C. C. Wimbish, P.O. Holt, Ab Watts,
P.W. Wingfield, S. B. Morse, J.W. Upshaw,
Manuel Persons, Henry Rudisell, Wm. Brooks,
Henry Coleman, E.J. Tatum, H.M. Williams,
J.W. Jones, R.S. Lovinggood, G.W. Bently,
S.W. Easly, Committee.
Capt. C. C. Wimbish said the Jury System was as old as civilization itself, and it was quite time the colored man of Georgia were enjoying this privilege to which he was entitled, and that by the proper use of the ballot it would come. To sit on the juried of our country he said, was more important than the privilege of voting. Hundreds of colored men have been sent to the chain-gang, the pentitentiary and to the gallows, not because they were guilty, but because they were tried by juries wholly white and who were controlled rather by their prejudice than by evidence. By denial of the right to sit on the jury the colored man is deprived of the power to protect his life, his home, an the virtue of the race, which is sweeter than life itself. He knew of one case where a colored man was convicted and sent to the peniten-
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