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Minutes and Proceedings of the First Annual Convention of the People of Colour, held by adjournments in the city of Philadelphia, from the sixth to the eleventh of June, inclusive, 1831.
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remove these prejudices, which are the actual causes of our ignorance, that we have appealed to our friends in support of the contemplated Institution.
The Convention has not been unmindful of the operations of the American Colonization Society, and it would respectfully suggest to that august body of learning, talent, and worth, that, in our humble opinion, strengthened, too, by the opinions of eminent men in this country, as well as in Europe, that they are pursuing the direct road to perpetuate slavery, with all its unchristianlike concomitants, in this boasted land of freedom; and, as citizens and men whose best blood is sapped to gain popularity for that Institution, we would, in the most feeling manner, beg of them to desist : or, if we must be sacrificed to their philanthrophy, we would rather die at home. Many of our fathers, and some of us, have fought and bled for the liberty, independence, and peace which you now enjoy ; and, surely, it would be ungenerous and unfeeling in you to deny us an humble and quiet grave in that country which gave us birth!
In conclusion, the Convention would remind our brethren that knowledge is power, and to that end, we call on you to sustain and support, by all honourable, energetic, and necessary means, those presses which are devoted to our instruction and elevation, to foster and encourage the mechanical arts and sciences among our brethren, to encourage simplicity, neatness, temperance, and economy in our habits, taking due care always to give the preference to the production of freemen wherever it can be had. Of the utility of a General Fund, the Convention believes there can exist but one sentiment, and that is for a speedy establishment of the same. Finally, we trust our brethren will pay due care to take such measures as will ensure a general and equal representation in the next Convention.
Junius C. Morel,
William Whipper, } Publishing Committee.
Dr. Belfast Burton,
Junius C. Morel,
Wm. Whipper, } Philadelphia.
John Peck, Carlisle, Pa.
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