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Address to the Fourth Annual Convention of the Free People of Color of the United States : delivered at the opening of their session in the City of New York, June 2, 1834 by William Hamilton.

1834 New York National Convention Address.6.pdf

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7

appearances the prospect is cheering, in a high degree. Anti-Slavery Societies are forming in every direction.

Next August proclaims the British dominions free from slaves.

These United states are her children, they will soon follow so good an example. Slavery, that Satanic monster, that beast whose mark has been long stamped on the forehead of the nations, shall be chained and cast down into blackness and darkness forever.

Soon, my brethren, shall the judgment be set. Then shall rise in glory and triumph, reason, virtue, kindness and liberty, and take a high exalted stand among the sons of men. Then shall tyranny, cruelty, prejudice and slavery be cast down to the lowest depths of oblivion; yea, be banished from the presence of God, and the glory of his power forever. Oh blessed consummation, and devoutly to be desired!

It is for you, my brethren, to help on in this work of moral improvement. Man is capable of high advances in his reasoning and moral faculties. Man is in the pursuit of happiness. And reason, or experience, which is the parent of reason, tells us that the highest state of morality is the highest state of happiness. Aside from a future day of judgment and retribution, there is always a day of retribution at hand. That society is most miserable that is most immoral--that most happy that is most virtuous. Let me therefore recommend earnestly that you press upon our people the necessity and advantage of a moral reformation. It may not produce an excess of riches, but it will produce a higher state of happiness, and render our circumstances easier.

You, gentlemen, can begin here. By managing this conference in a spirit of good will and true politeness ; by constantly keeping in view and cultivating a spirit of peace, order and harmony, rather than satire, wit, and eloquence ; by putting the best possible construction on each other's language, rather than charging each other with improper motives.

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