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Title: Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence - The Best Speeches Delivered by the Negro from the days of - Slavery to the Present Time
Author: Various
Language: English
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[Illustration: Frederick Douglass]





Copyright, 1914, by ROBERT JOHN NELSON

Printed in the United States of America



It seems eminently fitting and proper in this year, the fiftieth
anniversary of the Proclamation of Emancipation that the Negro should
give pause and look around him at the things which he has done, those
which he might have done, and those which he intends to do. We pause,
just at the beginning of another half century, taking stock of past
achievements, present conditions, future possibilities.

In considering the literary work of the Negro, his pre-eminence in the
field of oratory is striking. Since the early nineteenth century until
the present time, he is found giving eloquent voice to the story of his
wrongs and his proscriptions. Crude though the earlier efforts may be,
there is a certain grim eloquence in them that is touching, there must
be, because of the intensity of feeling behind the words.

Therefore, it seems appropriate in putting forth a volume commemorating
the birth of the Negro into manhood, to collect some few of the speeches
he made to help win his manhood, his place in the economy of the nation,
his right to stand with his face to the sun. The present volume does not
aim to be a complete collection of Negro Eloquence; it does not even aim
to present the best that the Negro has done on the platform, it merely
aims to present to the public some few of the best speeches made within
the past hundred years. Much of the best is lost; much of it is hidden
away in forgotten places. We have not always appreciated our own work
sufficiently to preserve it, and thus much valuable material is wasted.
Sometimes it has been difficult to obtain good speeches from those who
are living because of their innate modesty, either in not desiring to
appear in print, or in having thought so little of their efforts as to
have lost them.

The Editor is conscious that many names not in the table of contents
will suggest themselves to the most casual reader, but the omissions are
not intentional nor yet of ignorance always, but due to the difficulty
of procuring the matter in time for the publication of the volume before
the golden year shall have closed.

In collecting and arranging the matter, for the volume, I am deeply
indebted first to the living contributors who were so gracious and
generous in their responses to the request for their help, and to the
relatives of those who have passed into silence, for the loan of
valuable books and manuscripts. I cannot adequately express my gratitude
to Mr. John E. Bruce and Mr. Arthur A. Schomburg, President and
Secretary of the Negro Society for Historical Research, for advice,
suggestion, and best of all, for help in lending priceless books and
manuscripts and for aid in copying therefrom.

Again, we repeat, this volume is not a complete anthology; not the final
word in Negro eloquence of to-day, nor yet a collection of all the best;
it is merely a suggestion, a guide-post, pointing the way to a fuller
work, a slight memorial of the birth-year of the race.


_October, 1913._



The People of Hayti and a Plan of Emigration                          13

Toussaint L'Ouverture and the Haytian Revolution                      19

Liberia: Its Struggles and Its Promises                               33

What to the Slave is the Fourth of July                               41
On the Unveiling of the Lincoln Monument                             133

Should Colored Men be Subject to the Pains and Penalties
of the Fugitive Slave Law?                                            49

Young Men to the Front                                                63

The Civil Rights Bill                                                 67

Civil Rights and Social Equality                                      89

On the Occasion of Taking His Seat in the French
Academy                                                               95

Centennial Anniversary of the Pennsylvania Abolition
Society                                                               97

Centennial Anniversary of the Pennsylvania Abolition
Society                                                              101

A Memorial Discourse                                                 107

Crispus Attucks                                                      125

Address During Presidential Campaign of 1880                         151

The Black Woman of the South                                         159

An Open Letter to the Educational League of Georgia                  173

In the Wake of the Coming Ages                                       177

At the Opening of the Cotton States and International
Exposition, Atlanta                                                  181
Robert Gould Shaw                                                    205

The Negro as a Soldier                                               187

The Limitless Possibilities of the Negro Race                        211

The Party of Freedom and the Freedmen                                219

The Teaching of History                                              227

A Defense of the Negro Race                                          233

The Negro's Part in the Redemption of Africa                         243

A Plea for Industrial Opportunity                                    251

An Appeal to Our Brother in White                                    257

The Political Outlook for Africa                                     263

The Duty and Responsibility of the Anglo-Saxon                       265

The Army as a Trained Force                                          277

The Sunday-School and Church as a Solution of the Negro
Problem                                                              291

William Lloyd Garrison                                               305

Abraham Lincoln                                                      321

Abraham Lincoln and Fifty Years of Freedom                           337

On the Presentation of a Loving Cup to Senator Foraker               337

Equality of Rights for All Citizens                                  347

Is the Game Worth the Candle?                                        357

Some Elements Necessary to Race Development                          367

The Two Seals                                                        379

A Solution of the Race Problem                                       389

The Social Bearings of the Fifth Commandment                         397

Life's Morn                                                          403

Abraham Lincoln                                                      409

David Livingstone                                                    425

Education for Manhood                                                445

On Making a Life                                                     455

Emancipation and Racial Advancement                                  461

The Future of the Negro Church                                       475

The Negro Lawyer                                                     483

The Training of Negroes for Social Reform                            491



[Note 1: Extracts from an address delivered at the American
Convention for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery and Improving the
Condition of the African Race, Philadelphia, Pa., December 11, 1818.]

_Respected Gentlemen and Friends_:

At a period so momentous as the present, when the friends of abolition
and emancipation, as well as those whom observation and experience might
teach us to beware to whom we should apply the endearing appellations,
are professedly concerned for the establishment of an Asylum for those
Free Persons of Color, who may be disposed to remove to it, and for such
persons as shall hereafter be emancipated from slavery, a careful
examination of this subject is imposed upon us.

So large a number of abolitionists, convened from different sections of
the country, is at all times and under any circumstances, an interesting
spectacle to the eye of the philanthropist, how doubly delightful then
is it, to me, whose interests and feelings so largely partake in the
object you have in view, to behold this convention engaged in solemn
deliberation upon those subjects employed to promote the improvement of
the condition of the African race.

* * * * *

Assembled as this convention is, for the promotion and extension of its
beneficent and humane views and principles, I would respectfully beg
leave to lay before it a few remarks upon the character, condition, and
wants of the afflicted and divided people of Hayti, as they, and that
island, may be connected with plans for the emigration of the free
people of color of the United States.

God in the mysterious operation of his providence has seen fit to permit
the most astonishing changes to transpire upon that naturally beautiful
and (as to soil and productions) astonishingly luxuriant island.

The abominable principles, both of action and belief, which pervaded
France during the long series of vicissitudes which until recently she
has experienced, extended to Hayti, or Santo Domingo have undoubtedly
had an extensive influence upon the character, sentiments, and feelings
of all descriptions of its present inhabitants.

This magnificent and extensive island which has by travellers and
historians been often denominated the "paradise of the New World," seems
from its situation, extent, climate, and fertility peculiarly suited to
become an object of interest and attention to the many distinguished and
enlightened philanthropists whom God has been graciously pleased to
inspire with a zeal for the promotion of the best interests of the
descendants of Africa. The recent proceedings in several of the slave
States toward the free population of color in those States seem to
render it highly probable that that oppressed class of the community
will soon be obliged to flee to the free States for protection. If the
two rival Governments of Hayti were consolidated into one well-balanced
pacific power, there are many hundred of the free people in the New
England and Middle States who would be glad to repair there immediately
to settle, and believing that the period has arrived, when many zealous
friends to abolition and emancipation are of opinion that it is time for
them to act in relation to an asylum for such persons as shall be
emancipated from slavery, or for such portion of the free colored
population at present existing in the United States, as shall feel
disposed to emigrate, and being aware that the authorities of Hayti are
themselves desirous of receiving emigrants from this country, are among
the considerations which have induced me to lay this subject before the

The present spirit of rivalry which exists between the two chiefs in the
French part of the island, and the consequent belligerent aspect and
character of the country, may at first sight appear somewhat
discouraging to the beneficent views and labors of the friends of peace;
but these I am inclined to think are by no means to be considered as
insurmountable barriers against the benevolent exertions of those
Christian philanthropists whose sincere and hearty desire it is to
reunite and pacify them.

There seems to be no probability of their ever being reconciled to each
other without the philanthropic interposition and mediation of those who
have the welfare of the African race at heart. And where, in the whole
circle of practical Christian philanthropy and active beneficence, is
there so ample a field for the exertion of those heaven-born virtues as
in that hitherto distracted region? In those unhappy divisions which
exist in Hayti is strikingly exemplified the saying which is written in
the sacred oracles, "that when men forsake the true worship and service
of the only true God, and bow down to images of silver, and gold, and
four-footed beasts and creeping things, and become contentious with each
other," says the inspired writer, "in such a state of things trust ye
not a friend, put ye not confidence in a guide; keep the doors of thy
mouth from her that lieth in thy bosom; for there the son dishonoreth
the father, and the daughter riseth up against her mother, the
daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law, and a man's enemies shall be
those of his own house."

Had the venerable prophet in the foregoing predictions alluded expressly
and entirely to the actual moral, political, and above all, to the
religious character and condition of the Haytians, he could scarcely
have given a more correct description of it.

For there is scarcely a family whose members are not separated from each
other, and arrayed under the banners of the rival chiefs, in virtual
hostility against each other. In many instances the husband is with
Henry, and the wife and children with Boyer, and there are other
instances in which the heads of the family are with Boyer, and the other
members with Henry.

Let it be distinctly remembered, that these divided and distressed
individuals are not permitted to hold any intercourse with each other;
so that it is only when some very extraordinary occurrence transpires,
that persons in the different sections of the country receive any kind
of information from their nearest relatives and friends.

"Blessed are the peacemakers," is the language of that celestial
law-giver, who taught as never man taught; and his religion uniformly
assures the obedient recipients of his spirit, that they shall be
rewarded according to the extent, fidelity, and sincerity of their works
of piety and beneficence.

And if, according to the magnitude of the object in all its political,
benevolent, humane, and Christian relations, the quantum of recompense
is to be awarded and apprised to the just, to how large a share of the
benediction of our blessed Savior to the promoters of peace shall those
be authorized to expect who may be made the instruments of the
pacification and reunion of the Haytian people? Surely the blessings of
thousands who are, as it were, ready to perish, must inevitably come
upon them.

When I reflect that it was in this city that the first abolition society
that was formed in the world was established, I am strongly encouraged
to hope, that here also there may originate a plan, which shall be the
means of restoring many of our fellow beings to the embraces of their
families and friends, and place that whole country upon the basis of
unanimity and perpetual peace.

If the American Convention should in their wisdom think it expedient to
adopt measures for attempting to affect a pacification of the Haytians,
it is most heartily believed, that their benevolent views would be
hailed and concurred in with alacrity and delight by the English

It is moreover believed that a concern so stupendous in its relations,
and bearing upon the cause of universal abolition and emancipation, and
to the consequent improvement and elevation of the African race, would
tend to awaken an active and a universally deep and active interest in
the minds of that numerous host of abolitionists in Great Britain, whom
we trust have the best interests of the descendants of Africa deeply at



[Note 2: Extracts from a lecture delivered at the Stuyvesant
Institute, New York, for the benefit of the Colored Orphan Asylum,
February 26, 1841.]

_Ladies and Gentlemen:_

Whilst the orgies of the French revolution thrust forward a being whose
path was by rivers of blood, the horrors of Santo Domingo produced one
who was pre-eminently a peacemaker--TOUSSAINT L'OUVERTURE.

In estimating the character of Toussaint L'Ouverture, regard must be
paid, not to the enlightened age in which he lived, but to the rank in
society from which he sprang--a rank which must be classed with a remote
and elementary age of mankind.

Born forty-seven years before the commencement of the revolt, he had
reached the prime of manhood, a slave, with a soul uncontaminated by the
degradation which surrounded him. Living in a state of society where
worse than polygamy was actually urged, we find him at this period
faithful to one wife--the wife of his youth--and the father of an
interesting family. Linked with such tender ties, and enlightened with
some degree of education, which his indulgent master, M. Bayou, had
given him, he fulfilled, up to the moment of the revolt, the duties of
a Christian man in slavery.

At the time of the insurrection--in which he took no part--he continued
in the peaceable discharge of his duties as coachman; and when the
insurgents approached the estate whereon he lived, he accomplished the
flight of M. Bayou, whose kind treatment (part of this kindness was
teaching this slave to read and write) he repaid by forwarding to him
produce for his maintenance while in exile in these United States.

Having thus faithfully acquitted himself as a slave, he turned towards
the higher destinies which awaited him as a freeman. With a mind stored
with patient reflection upon the biographies of men, the most eminent in
civil and military affairs; and deeply versed in the history of the most
remarkable revolutions that had yet occurred amongst mankind, he entered
the army of the insurgents under Jean François. This chief rapidly
promoted him to the offices of physician to the forces, aid-de-camp, and
colonel. Jean François, in alliance with the Spaniards, maintained war
at this time for the cause of royalty.

Whilst serving under this chief, Toussaint beheld another civil war
agitating the French colony. On one side, the French Commissioners, who
had acknowledged the emancipation of the slaves, maintained war for the
Republic; on the other side, the old noblesse, or planters, fought under
the royal banner, having called in the aid of the British forces in
order to re-establish slavery and the ancient regime.

In this conflict, unmindful of their solemn oaths against the decree of
the 15th of May, 1791, the whites of both parties, including the
planters, hesitated not to fight in the same ranks, shoulder to
shoulder, with the blacks. Caste was forgotten in the struggle for

At this juncture Jean François, accompanied by his principal officers,
and possessed of all the honors and emoluments of a captain-general in
the service of his Catholic Majesty, retired to Spain, leaving Toussaint
at liberty to choose his party. Almost immediately joining that standard
which acknowledged and battled for equal rights to all men, he soon
rendered signal service to the Commissioners, by driving the Spaniards
from the northern, and by holding the British at bay in the eastern part
of the island. For these services he was raised to the rank of general
by the French commander at Porte-aux-Paix, General Laveaux, a promotion
which he soon repaid by saving that veteran's life under the following
circumstances: Villate, a mulatto general, envious of the honors
bestowed on Toussaint, treacherously imprisoned General Laveaux in Cape
François. Immediately upon hearing this fact, Toussaint hastened to the
Cape at the head of 10,000 men and liberated his benefactor. And, at the
very moment of his liberation, a commission arrived from France
appointing General Laveaux Governor of the Colony; his first official
act was to proclaim Toussaint his lieutenant. "This is the black," said
Laveaux, "predicted by Raynal, and who is destined to avenge the
outrages committed against his whole race." A remark soon verified, for
on his attainment of the supreme power, Toussaint avenged those
injuries--by forgiveness!

As an acknowledgment for his eminent services against the British, and
against the mulattoes, who, inflamed with all the bitterness of _caste_,
had maintained a sanguinary war under their great leader Rigaud, in the
southern part of the colony, the Commissioners invested Toussaint with
the office and dignity of general-in-chief of Santo Domingo.

From that moment began the full development of the vast and versatile
genius of this extraordinary man. Standing amid the terrible, because
hostile, fragments of two revolutions, harassed by the rapacious greed
of commissioners upon commissioners, who, successively dispatched from
France, hid beneath a republican exterior a longing after the spoils;
with an army in the field accustomed by five years' experience to all
the license of civil war, Toussaint, with a giant hand, seized the reins
of government, reduced these conflicting elements to harmony and order,
and raised the colony to nearly its former prosperity, his lofty
intellect always delighting to effect its object rather by the tangled
mazes of diplomacy than by the strong arm of physical force, yet
maintaining a steadfast and unimpeached adherence to truth, his word,
and his honor.

General Maitland, commander of the British forces, finding the reduction
of the island to be utterly hopeless, signed a treaty with Toussaint for
the evacuation of all the posts which he held. "Toussaint then paid him
a visit, and was received with military honors. After partaking of a
grand entertainment, he was presented by General Maitland, in the name
of His Majesty, with a splendid service of plate, and put in possession
of the government-house which had been built and furnished by the

* * * * *

Buonaparte, on becoming First Consul, sent out the confirmation of
Toussaint as commander-in-chief, who, with views infinitely beyond the
short-sighted and selfish vision of the Commissioners, proclaimed a
general amnesty to the planters who had fled during the revolutions,
earnestly invited their return to the possession of their estates, and,
with a delicate regard to their feelings, decreed that the epithet
"emigrant" should not be applied to them. Many of the planters accepted
the invitation, and returned to the peaceful possession of their

In regard to the army of Toussaint, General Lacroix, one of the planters
who returned, affirms "that never was a European army subjected to a
more rigid discipline than that which was observed by the troops of
Toussaint." Yet this army was converted by the commander-in-chief into
industrious laborers, by the simple expedient of _paying them for their
labor_. "When he restored many of the planters to their estates, there
was no restoration of their former property in human beings. No human
being was to be bought or sold. Severe tasks, flagellations, and scanty
food were no longer to be endured. The planters were obliged to employ
their laborers on the footing of hired servants." "And under this
system," says Lacroix, "the colony advanced, as if by enchantment
towards its ancient splendor; cultivation was extended with such
rapidity that every day made its progress more perceptible. All
appeared to be happy, and regarded Toussaint as their guardian angel. In
making a tour of the island, he was hailed by the blacks with universal
joy, nor was he less a favorite of the whites."

Toussaint, having effected a bloodless conquest of the Spanish
territory, had now become commander of the entire island. Performing all
the executive duties, he made laws to suit the exigency of the times.
His Egeria was temperance accompanied with a constant activity of body
and mind.

The best proof of the entire success of his government is contained in
the comparative views of the exports of the island, before the
revolutions, and during the administration of Toussaint. Bear in mind
that, "before the revolution there were 450,000 slave laborers working
with a capital in the shape of buildings, mills, fixtures, and
implements, which had been accumulating during a century. Under
Toussaint there were 290,000 free laborers, many of them just from the
army or the mountains, working on plantations that had undergone the
devastation of insurrection and a seven years' war."

* * * * *

In consequence of the almost entire cessation of official communication
with France, and for other reasons equally good, Toussaint thought it
necessary for the public welfare to frame a new constitution for the
government of the island. With the aid of M. Pascal, Abbe Moliere, and
Marinit, he drew up a constitution, and submitted the same to a General
Assembly convened from every district, and by that assembly the
constitution was adopted. It was subsequently promulgated in the name
of the people. And, on the 1st of July, 1801, the island was declared to
be an independent State, in which _all men_, without regard to
complexion or creed, possessed _equal rights_.

This proceeding was subsequently sanctioned by Napoleon Buonaparte,
whilst First Consul. In a letter to Toussaint, he says, "We have
conceived for you esteem, and we wish to recognize and proclaim the
great services you have rendered the French people. If their colors fly
on Santo Domingo, it is to you and your brave blacks that we owe it.
Called by your talents and the force of circumstances to the chief
command, you have terminated the civil war, put a stop to the
persecutions of some ferocious men, and restored to honor the religion
and the worship of God, from whom all things come. The situation in
which you were placed, surrounded on all sides by enemies, and without
the mother country being able to succor or sustain you, has rendered
legitimate the articles of that constitution."

Although Toussaint enforced the duties of religion, he entirely severed
the connection between Church and State. He rigidly enforced all the
duties of morality, and would not suffer in his presence even the
approach to indecency of dress or manner. "Modesty," said he, "is the
defense of woman."

The chief, nay the idol of an army of 100,000 well-trained and
acclimated troops ready to march or sail where he wist, Toussaint
refrained from raising the standard of liberty in any one of the
neighboring island, at a time when, had he been fired with what men
term ambition, he could easily have revolutionized the entire
archipelago of the west. But his thoughts were bent on conquest of
another kind; he was determined to overthrow an _error_ which designing
and interested men had craftily instilled into the civilized world,--a
belief in the natural inferiority of the Negro race. It was the glory
and the warrantable boast of Toussaint that he had been the instrument
of demonstrating that, even with the worst odds against them, this race
is entirely capable of achieving liberty and of self-government. He did
more: by abolishing caste he proved the artificial nature of such
distinctions, and further demonstrated that even slavery cannot unfit
men for the full exercise of all the functions which belong to free

"Some situations of trust were filled by free Negroes and mulattoes, who
had been in respectable circumstances under the old Government; but
others were occupied by Negroes, and even by Africans, who had recently
emerged from the lowest condition of slavery."

But the bright and happy state of things which the genius of Toussaint
had almost created out of elements the most discordant was doomed to be
of short duration. For the dark spirit of Napoleon, glutted, but not
satiated with the glory banquet afforded at the expense of Europe and
Africa, seized upon this, the most beautiful and happy of the
Hesperides, as the next victim of its remorseless rapacity.

With the double intention of getting rid of the republican army, and
reducing back to slavery the island of Hayti, he sent out his
brother-in-law, General Leclerc, with 26 ships of war and 25,000 men.

Like Leonidas at Thermopylæ, or the Bruce at Bannockburn, Toussaint
determined to defend from thraldom his sea-girt isle, made sacred to
liberty by the baptism of blood.

On the 28th of January, 1802, Leclerc arrived off the bay of Samana,
from the promontory of which Toussaint, in anxious alarm, beheld for the
first time in his life so large an armament. "We must all perish," said
he, "all France has come to Santo Domingo!" But this despondency passed
away in a moment, and then this man, who had been a kindly-treated
slave, prepared to oppose to the last that system which he now
considered worse than death.

It is impossible, after so long a tax on your patience, to enter on a
detailed narration of the conflict which ensued. The hour of trial
served only to develop and ennoble the character of Toussaint, who rose,
with misfortune, above the allurements of rank and wealth which were
offered as the price of his submission; and the very ties of parental
love he yielded to the loftier sentiment of patriotism.

On the 2d of February, a division of Leclerc's army, commanded by
General Rochambeau, an old planter, landed at Fort Dauphin, and
ruthlessly murdered many of the inhabitants (freedmen) who, unarmed, had
been led by curiosity to the beach, in order to witness the
disembarkation of the troops.

Christophe, one of the generals of Toussaint, commanding at Cape
François, having resisted the menaces and the flattery of Leclerc,
reduced that ill-fated town to ashes, and retired with his troops into
the mountains, carrying with him 2,000 of the white inhabitants of the
Cape, who were protected from injury during the fierce war which ensued.

Having full possession of the plain of the Cape, Leclerc, with a
proclamation of liberty in his hand, in March following re-established
slavery with all its former cruelties.

This treacherous movement thickened the ranks of Toussaint, who
thenceforward so vigorously pressed his opponent, that as a last resort,
Leclerc broke the shackles of the slave, and proclaimed "Liberty and
equality to all the inhabitants of Santo Domingo."

This proclamation terminated the conflict for the time. Christophe and
Dessalines, general officers, and at length Toussaint himself,
capitulated, and, giving up the command of the island to Leclerc, he
retired, at the suggestion of that officer, to enjoy rest and the sweet
endearments of his family circle, on one of his estates near Gonaives.
At this place he had remained about one month, when, without any
adequate cause, Leclerc caused him to be seized, and to be placed on
board of a ship of war, in which he was conveyed to France, where,
without trial or condemnation, he was imprisoned in a loathsome and
unhealthy dungeon. Unaccustomed to the chill and damp of this
prison-house, the aged frame of Toussaint gave way, and he died.

In this meagre outline of his life I have presented simply facts,
gleaned, for the most part, from the unwilling testimony of his foes,
and therefore resting on good authority. The highest encomium on his
character is contained in the fact that Napoleon believed that by
capturing him he would be able to re-enslave Hayti; and even this
encomium is, if possible, rendered higher by the circumstances which
afterward transpired, which showed that his principles were so
thoroughly disseminated among his brethren, that, without the presence
of Toussaint, they achieved that liberty which he had taught them so
rightly to estimate.

The capture of Toussaint spread like wild-fire through the island, and
his principal officers again took the field. A fierce and sanguinary war
ensued, in which the French gratuitously inflicted the most awful
cruelties on their prisoners, many of whom having been hunted with
bloodhounds, were carried in ships to some distance from the shore,
murdered in cold blood, and cast into the sea; their corpses were thrown
by the waves back upon the beach, and filled the air with pestilence, by
which the French troops perished in large numbers. Leclerc having
perished by pestilence, his successor, Rochambeau, when the conquest of
the island was beyond possibility, became the cruel perpetrator of these
bloody deeds.

Thus it will be perceived that treachery and massacre were begun on the
side of the French. I place emphasis on these facts in order to endeavor
to disabuse the public mind of an attempt to attribute to emancipation
the acts of retaliation resorted to by the Haytians in _imitation_ of
what the enlightened French had taught them. In two daily papers of this
city there were published, a year since, a series of articles entitled
the "Massacres of Santo Domingo."

The "massacres" are not attributable to emancipation, for we have proved
otherwise in regard to the first of them. The other occurred in 1804,
twelve years after the slaves had disenthralled themselves. Fearful as
the latter may have been, it did not equal the atrocities previously
committed on the Haytians by the French. And the massacre was restricted
to the white French inhabitants, whom Dessalines, the Robespierre of the
island, suspected of an attempt to bring back slavery, with the aid of a
French force yet hovering in the neighborhood.

And if we search for the cause of this massacre, we may trace it to the
following source: Nations which are pleased to term themselves civilized
have one sort of faith which they hold to one another, and another sort
which they entertain towards people less advanced in refinement. The
faith which they entertain towards the latter is, very often, treachery,
in the vocabulary of the civilized. It was treachery towards Toussaint
that caused the massacre of Santo Domingo; it was treachery towards
Osceola that brought bloodhounds into Florida!

General Rochambeau, with the remnant of the French army, having been
reduced to the dread necessity of striving "to appease the calls of
hunger by feeding on horses, mules, and the very dogs that had been
employed in hunting down and devouring the Negroes," evacuated the
island in the autumn of 1803, and Hayti thenceforward became an
independent State.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I have now laid before you a concise view of the
revolutions of Hayti in the relation of cause and effect; and I trust
you will now think, that, so far from being scenes of indiscriminate
massacre from which we should turn our eyes in horror, these revolutions
constitute an epoch worthy of the anxious study of every American

Among the many lessons that may be drawn from this portion of history is
one not unconnected with the present occasion. From causes to which I
need not give a name, there is gradually creeping into our otherwise
prosperous state the incongruous and undermining influence of _caste_.
One of the local manifestations of this unrepublican sentiment is, that
while 800 children, chiefly of foreign parents, are educated and taught
trades at the expense of all the citizens, colored children are excluded
from these privileges.

With the view to obviate the evils of such an unreasonable proscription,
a few ladies of this city, by their untiring exertions, have organized
an "Asylum for Colored Orphans." Their zeal in this cause is infinitely
beyond all praise of mine, for their deeds of mercy are smiled on by Him
who has declared, that "Whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these
little ones a cup of cold water, shall in no wise lose her reward." Were
any further argument needed to urge them on in their blessed work, I
would point out to them the revolutions of Hayti, where, in the midst of
the orgies and incantations of civil war, there appeared, as a spirit of
peace, the patriot, the father, the benefactor of mankind--Toussaint
L'Ouverture, a freedman, who had been taught to read while in slavery!



_Senator at Monrovia, Liberia_

[Note 3: A speech delivered in 1846, on the anniversary of the
founding of the Republic of Liberia.]

As far back towards the infancy of our race as history and tradition are
able to conduct us, we have found the custom everywhere prevailing among
mankind, to mark by some striking exhibition, those events which were
important and interesting, either in their immediate bearing or in their
remote consequences upon the destiny of those among whom they occurred.
These events are epochs in the history of man; they mark the rise and
fall of kingdoms and of dynasties; they record the movements of the
human mind, and the influence of those movements upon the destinies of
the race; and whilst they frequently disclose to us the sad and
sickening spectacle of innocence bending under the yoke of injustice,
and of weakness robbed and despoiled by the hand of an unscrupulous
oppression, they occasionally display, as a theme for admiring
contemplation, the sublime spectacle of the human mind, roused by a
concurrence of circumstances, to vigorous advances in the career of

The utility of thus marking the progress of time--of recording the
occurrence of events, and of holding up remarkable personages to the
contemplation of mankind--is too obvious to need remark. It arises from
the instincts of mankind, the irrepressible spirit of emulation, and the
ardent longings after immortality; and this restless passion to
perpetuate their existence which they find it impossible to suppress,
impels them to secure the admiration of succeeding generations in the
performance of deeds, by which, although dead, they may yet speak. In
commemorating events thus powerful in forming the manners and sentiments
of mankind, and in rousing them to strenuous exertion and to high and
sustained emulation, it is obvious that such, and such only, should be
selected as virtue and humanity would approve; and that, if any of an
opposite character be held up, they should be displayed only as beacons,
or as towering Pharos throwing a strong but lurid light to mark the
melancholy grave of mad ambition, and to warn the inexperienced voyager
of the existing danger.

Thanks to the improved and humanized spirit--or should I not rather say,
the chastened and pacific civilization of the age in which we
live?--that laurels gathered upon the field of mortal strife, and
bedewed with the tears of the widow and the orphan, are regarded now,
not with admiration, but with horror; that the armed warrior, reeking in
the gore of murdered thousands, who, in the age that is just passing
away, would have been hailed with noisy acclamation by the senseless
crowd, is now regarded only as the savage commissioner of an unsparing
oppression, or at best, as the ghostly executioner of an unpitying
justice. He who would embalm his name in the grateful remembrance of
coming generations; he who would secure for himself a niche in the
temple of undying fame; he who would hew out for himself a monument of
which his country may boast; he who would entail upon heirs a name which
they may be proud to wear, must seek some other field than that of
battle as the theatre of his exploits.

We have not yet numbered twenty-six years since he who is the oldest
colonist amongst us was the inhabitant--not the citizen--of a country,
and that, too, the country of his birth, where the prevailing sentiment
is, that he and his race are incapacitated by an inherent defect in
their mental constitution, to enjoy that greatest of all blessings, and
to exercise that greatest of all rights, bestowed by a beneficent God
upon his rational creatures, namely, the government of themselves by
themselves. Acting upon this opinion, an opinion as false as it is
foul--acting upon this opinion, as upon a self-evident proposition,
those who held it proceeded with a fiendish consistency to deny the
rights of citizens to those whom they had declared incapable of
performing the duties of citizens. It is not necessary, and therefore I
will not disgust you with the hideous picture of that state of things
which followed upon the prevalence of this blasphemous theory. The bare
mention that such an opinion prevailed would be sufficient to call up in
the mind, even of those who had never witnessed its operation, images of
the most sickening and revolting character. Under the iron reign of this
crushing sentiment, most of us who are assembled here to-day drew our
first breath, and sighed away the years of our youth. No hope cheered
us; no noble object looming in the dim and distant future kindled our
ambition. Oppression--cold, cheerless oppression, like the dreary region
of eternal winter,--chilled every noble passion and fettered and
paralyzed every arm. And if among the oppressed millions there were
found here and there one in whose bosom the last glimmer of a generous
passion was not yet extinguished--one, who, from the midst of inglorious
slumberers in the deep degradation around him, would lift up his voice
and demand those rights which the God of nature hath bestowed in equal
gift upon all His rational creatures, he was met at once, by those who
had at first denied and then enforced, with the stern reply that for him
and for all his race, liberty and expatriation are inseparable.

Dreadful as the alternative was, fearful as was the experiment now
proposed to be tried, there were hearts equal to the task; hearts which
quailed not at the dangers which loomed and frowned in the distance, but
calm, cool, and fixed in their purpose, prepared to meet them with the
watchword, "Give me liberty or give me death."

Passing by intermediate events, which, did the time allow, it would be
interesting to notice, we hasten to the grand event--the era of our
separate existence, when the American flag first flung out its graceful
folds to the breeze on the heights of Mesurado, and the pilgrims,
relying upon the protection of Heaven and the moral grandeur of their
cause, took solemn possession of the land in the name of Virtue,
Humanity, and Religion.

It would discover an unpardonable apathy were we to pass on without
pausing a moment to reflect upon the emotions which heaved the bosoms of
the pilgrims, when they stood for the first time where we now stand.
What a prospect spread out before them! They stood in the midst of an
ancient wilderness, rank and compacted with the growth of a thousand
years, unthinned and unreclaimed by a single stroke of the woodman's
axe. Few and far between might be found inconsiderable openings, where
the ignorant native erected his rude habitation, or savage as his
patrimonial wilderness, celebrated his bloody rites, and presented his
votive gifts to demons. The rainy season--that terrible ordeal of
foreign constitutions--was about setting in; the lurid lightning shot
its fiery bolts into the forest around them, the thunder muttered its
angry tones over their head, and the frail tenements, the best which
their circumstances could afford, to shield them from a scorching sun by
day and drenching rains at night, had not yet been completed. To suppose
that at this time, when all things above and around them seemed to
combine their influence against them; to suppose they did not perceive
the full danger and magnitude of the enterprise they had embarked in,
would be to suppose, not that they were heroes, but that they had lost
the sensibility of men. True courage is equally remote from blind
recklessness and unmanning timidity; and true heroism does not consist
in insensibility to danger. He is a hero who calmly meets, and
fearlessly grapples with the dangers which duty and honor forbid him to
decline. The pilgrims rose to a full perception of all the circumstances
of their condition. But when they looked back to that country from
which they had come, and remembered the degradations in that house of
bondage out of which they had been so fortunate as to escape, they
bethought themselves; and, recollecting the high satisfaction with which
they knew success would gladden their hearts, the rich inheritance they
would entail upon their children, and the powerful aid it would lend to
the cause of universal humanity, they yielded to the noble inspiration
and girded them to the battle either for doing or for suffering.

Let it not be supposed, because I have laid universal humanity under a
tribute of gratitude to the founders of Liberia, that I have attached to
their humble achievements too important an influence in that grand
system of agencies which is now at work, renovating human society, and
purifying and enlarging the sources of its enjoyment. In the system of
that Almighty Being, without whose notice not a sparrow falls to the

    "Who sees, with equal eye as God of all,
    A hero perish, or a sparrow fall,
    Atoms or systems into ruin hurled,
    And now a bubble-burst, and now a world."

"Righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people."
All attempts to correct the depravity of man, to stay the headlong
propensity to vice, to abate the madness of ambition, will be found
deplorably inefficient, unless we apply the restrictions and the
tremendous sanctions of religion. A profound regard and deference for
religion, a constant recognition of our dependence upon God, and of our
obligation and accountability to Him; an ever-present, ever-pressing
sense of His universal and all-controlling providence, this, and only
this, can give energy to the arm of law, cool the raging fever of the
passions, and abate the lofty pretensions of mad ambition. In
prosperity, let us bring out our thank-offering, and present it with
cheerful hearts in orderly, virtuous, and religious conduct. In
adversity, let us consider, confess our sins, and abase ourselves before
the throne of God. In danger, let us go to Him, whose prerogative it is
to deliver; let us go to Him, with the humility and confidence which a
deep conviction that the battle is not to the strong nor the race to the
swift, is calculated to inspire.

Fellow citizens! we stand now on ground never occupied by a people
before. However insignificant we may regard ourselves, the eyes of
Europe and America are upon us, as a germ, destined to burst from its
enclosure in the earth, unfold its petals to the genial air, rise to the
height and swell to the dimensions of the full-grown tree, or
(inglorious fate) to shrivel, to die, and to be buried in oblivion.
Rise, fellow citizens, rise to a clear and full perception of your
tremendous responsibilities! Upon you, rely upon it, depends in a
measure you can hardly conceive the future destiny of your race.
You--you are to give the answer, whether the African race is doomed to
unterminable degradation, a hideous blot on the fair face of Creation, a
libel upon the dignity of human nature, or whether it is capable to take
an honorable rank amongst the great family of nations! The friends of
the colony are trembling: The enemies of the colored man are hoping.
Say, fellow citizens, will you palsy the hands of your friends and
sicken their hearts, and gladden the souls of your enemies, by a base
refusal to enter upon a career of glory which is now opening so
propitiously before you? The genius of universal emancipation, bending
from her lofty seat, invites you to accept the wreath of national
independence. The voice of your friends, swelling upon the breeze, cries
to you from afar--Raise your standard! Assert your independence! throw
out your banners to the wind! And will the descendants of the mighty
Pharaohs, that awed the world; will the sons of him who drove back the
serried legions of Rome and laid siege to the "eternal city"--will they,
the achievements of whose fathers are yet the wonder and admiration of
the world--will they refuse the proffered boon? Never! never!! never!!!
Shades of the mighty dead! spirits of departed great ones! inspire us,
animate us to the task; nerve us for the battle! Pour into our bosom a
portion of that ardor and patriotism which bore you on to battle, to
victory, and to conquest. Shall Liberia live? Yes; in the generous
emotions now swelling in your bosom; in the high and noble purpose--now
fixing itself in your mind, and referring into the unyieldingness of
indomitable principle, we hear the inspiring response--Liberia shall
live before God and before the nations of the earth!

The night is passing away; the dusky shades are fleeing and even now

    "Jocund day stands tiptoe
    On the misty mountain top."



[Note 4: Extract from an oration delivered by Frederick Douglass at
Rochester, N. Y., July 5, 1852.]

FREDERICK DOUGLASS, _the greatest of Negro orators, though born and
reared a slave, attained great eminence in the world. After a successful
career as lecturer and editor and author, he held successively the
positions of Secretary to the Santo Domingo Commission, 1871;
Presidential Elector for the State of New York, 1872; United States
Marshal for the District of Columbia, 1876-81; Recorder of Deeds for the
District, 1881-86; Minister to Hayti, 1889-91._

_Fellow Citizens:_

Pardon me, and allow me to ask, why am I called upon to speak here
to-day? What have I or those I represent to do with your national
independence? Are the great principles of political freedom and of
natural justice, embodied in that Declaration of Independence, extended
to us? and am I, therefore, called upon to bring our humble offering to
the national altar, and to confess the benefits, and express devout
gratitude for the blessings resulting from your independence to us?

Would to God, both for your sakes and ours, that an affirmative answer
could be truthfully returned to these questions. Then would my task be
light, and my burden easy and delightful. For who is there so cold that
a nation's sympathy could not warm him? Who so obdurate and dead to the
claims of gratitude, that would not thankfully acknowledge such
priceless benefits? Who so stolid and selfish that would not give his
voice to swell the halleluiahs of a nation's jubilee, when the chains of
servitude had been torn from his limbs? I am not that man. In a case
like that, the dumb might eloquently speak, and the "lame man leap like
a hart."

But such is not the state of the case. I say it with a sad sense of
disparity between us. I am not included within the pale of this glorious
anniversary! Your high independence only reveals the immeasurable
distance between us. The blessings in which you this day rejoice are not
enjoyed in common. The rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity,
and independence bequeathed by your fathers is shared by you, not by me.
The sunlight that brought life and healing to you has brought stripes
and death to me. This Fourth of July is _yours_, not _mine_. _You_ may
rejoice, _I_ must mourn. To drag a man in fetters into the grand
illuminated temple of liberty, and call upon him to join you in joyous
anthems, were inhuman mockery and sacrilegious irony. Do you mean,
citizens, to mock me, by asking me to speak today? If so, there is a
parallel to your conduct. And let me warn you, that it is dangerous to
copy the example of a nation whose crimes, towering up to heaven, were
thrown down by the breath of the Almighty, burying that nation in
irrecoverable ruin. I can to-day take up the lament of a peeled and
woe-smitten people.

"By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down. Yes! We wept when we
remembered Zion. We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst
thereof. For there they that carried us away captive, required of us a
song; and they who wasted us, required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one
of the songs of Zion. How can we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?
If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning. If
I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth."

Fellow citizens, above your national, tumultuous joy, I hear the
mournful wail of millions, whose chains, heavy and grievous yesterday,
are to-day rendered more intolerable by the jubilant shouts that reach
them. If I do forget, if I do not remember those bleeding children of
sorrow this day, "may my right hand forget her cunning, and may my
tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth!" To forget them, to pass lightly
over their wrongs, and to chime in with the popular theme, would be
treason most scandalous and shocking, and would make me a reproach
before God and the world. My subject, then, fellow citizens, is
"American Slavery." I shall see this day and its popular characteristics
from the slave's point of view. Standing here, identified with the
American bondman, making his wrongs mine, I do not hesitate to declare,
with all my soul, that the character and conduct of this nation never
looked blacker to me than on this Fourth of July. Whether we turn to the
declarations of the past, or to the professions of the present, the
conduct of the nation seems equally hideous and revolting. America is
false to the past, false to the present, and solemnly binds herself to
be false to the future. Standing with God and the crushed and bleeding
slave on this occasion, I will, in the name of humanity, which is
outraged, in the name of liberty, which is fettered, in the name of the
Constitution and the Bible, which are disregarded and trampled upon,
dare to call in question and to denounce, with all the emphasis I can
command, everything that serves to perpetuate slavery--the great sin and
shame of America! "I will not equivocate; I will not excuse;" I will use
the severest language I can command, and yet not one word shall escape
me that any man, whose judgment is not blinded by prejudice, or who is
not at heart a slave-holder, shall not confess to be right and just.

But I fancy I hear some one of my audience say it is just in this
circumstance that you and your brother abolitionists fail to make a
favorable impression on the public mind. Would you argue more and
denounce less, would you persuade more and rebuke less, your cause would
be much more likely to succeed. But, I submit, where all is plain there
is nothing to be argued. What point in the anti-slavery creed would you
have me argue? On what branch of the subject do the people of this
country need light? Must I undertake to prove that the slave is a man?
That point is conceded already. Nobody doubts it. The slave-holders
themselves acknowledge it in the enactment of laws for their government.
They acknowledge it when they punish disobedience on the part of the
slave. There are seventy-two crimes in the State of Virginia, which, if
committed by a black man (no matter how ignorant he be), subject him to
the punishment of death; while only two of these same crimes will
subject a white man to like punishment. What is this but the
acknowledgment that the slave is a moral, intellectual, and responsible
being? The manhood of the slave is conceded. It is admitted in the fact
that Southern statute-books are covered with enactments, forbidding,
under severe fines and penalties, the teaching of the slave to read or
write. When you can point to any such laws in reference to the beasts of
the field, then I may consent to argue the manhood of the slave. When
the dogs in your streets, when the fowls of the air, when the cattle on
your hills, when the fish of the sea, and the reptiles that crawl, shall
be unable to distinguish the slave from a brute, then will I argue with
you that the slave is a man!

For the present it is enough to affirm the equal manhood of the Negro
race. Is it not astonishing that, while we are plowing, planting, and
reaping, using all kinds of mechanical tools, erecting houses,
constructing bridges, building ships, working in metals of brass, iron,
copper, silver, and gold; that while we are reading, writing, and
cyphering, acting as clerks, merchants, and secretaries, having among us
lawyers, doctors, ministers, poets, authors, editors, orators, and
teachers; that while we are engaged in all manner of enterprises common
to other men--digging gold in California, capturing the whale in the
Pacific, feeding sheep and cattle on the hillside, living, moving,
acting, thinking, planning, living in families as husbands, wives, and
children, and above all, confessing and worshiping the Christian God,
and looking hopefully for life and immortality beyond the grave--we are
called upon to prove that we are men?

Would you have me argue that man is entitled to liberty? That he is the
rightful owner of his own body? You have already declared it. Must I
argue the wrongfulness of slavery? Is that a question for republicans?
Is it to be settled by the rules of logic and argumentation, as a matter
beset with great difficulty, involving a doubtful application of the
principle of justice, hard to be understood? How should I look to-day in
the presence of Americans, dividing and subdividing a discourse, to show
that men have a natural right to freedom, speaking of it relatively and
positively, negatively and affirmatively? To do so would be to make
myself ridiculous, and to offer an insult to your understanding. There
is not a man beneath the canopy of heaven who does not know that slavery
is wrong _for him_.

What! Am I to argue that it is wrong to make men brutes, to rob them of
their liberty, to work them without wages, to keep them ignorant of
their relations to their fellow men, to beat them with sticks, to flay
their flesh with the lash, to load their limbs with irons, to hunt them
with dogs, to sell them at auction, to sunder their families, to knock
out their teeth, to burn their flesh, to starve them into obedience and
submission to their masters? Must I argue that a system thus marked with
blood and stained with pollution is wrong? No; I will not. I have better
employment for my time and strength that such arguments would imply.

What, then, remains to be argued? Is it that slavery is not divine; that
God did not establish it; that our doctors of divinity are mistaken?
There is blasphemy in the thought. That which is inhuman cannot be
divine. Who can reason on such a proposition? They that can, may; I
cannot. The time for such argument is past.

At a time like this, scorching irony, not convincing argument, is
needed. Oh! had I the ability, and could I reach the nation's ear, I
would to-day pour out a fiery streak of biting ridicule, blasting
reproach, withering sarcasm, and stern rebuke. For it is not light that
is needed, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need
the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake. The feeling of the nation
must be quickened; the conscience of the nation must be roused; the
propriety of the nation must be startled; the hypocrisy of the nation
must be exposed; and its crimes against God and man must be denounced.

What to the American slave is your Fourth of July? I answer, a day that
reveals to him, more than all other days of the year, the gross
injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him your
celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty an unholy license; your
national greatness, swelling vanity; your sounds of rejoicing are empty
and heartless; your denunciations of tyrants, brass-fronted impudence;
your shouts of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and
hymns, your sermons and thanksgivings, with all your religious parade
and solemnity, are to him mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and
hypocrisy--a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation
of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practises more
shocking and bloody than are the people of these United States at this
very hour.

Go where you may, search where you will, roam through all the monarchies
and despotisms of the Old World, travel through South America, search
out every abuse and when you have found the last, lay your facts by the
side of the every-day practises of this nation, and you will say with me
that, for revolting barbarity and shameless hypocrisy, America reigns
without a rival.



     CHARLES H. LANGSTON, _a native of Ohio, was the first to counsel
     resistance to the Fugitive Slave Act, and lost no opportunity
     himself to disobey it. He was found guilty of violating the law in
     rescuing John Price, an alleged fugitive from service in Kentucky.
     This speech is his answer to the question of the judge why the
     sentence should not be pronounced upon him. He was sentenced to one
     hundred and twenty days' imprisonment, and fined $100.00 and costs,
     amounting to $872.72._

[Note 5: Speech of Charles H. Langston before the United States
District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, May 12, 1859.
Delivered when about to be sentenced for rescuing a man from slavery.]

After a trial of twenty-three days in the United States District Court
for the Northern District of Ohio, Hiram V. Willson presiding, and at a
cost to the United States Government of more than two thousand dollars,
C. H. Langston was found guilty of violating the Fugitive Slave Law, by
rescuing John Price, an alleged fugitive from service in Kentucky, from
the custody of one, Anderson Jennings, at Wellington, on the 13th day of
September, 1858.

Mr. Langston was sentenced to twenty days' imprisonment in the jail of
Cuyahoga county, and also to pay a fine of one hundred dollars and a
portion of the costs of prosecution, amounting to nine hundred and
seventy-two dollars and seventy cents.


Fine and bill of costs as copied from the Journal of the Court:

Fine                          $100.00
Clerk's fees                    32.10
Marshal's fees                  30.40
United States' witnesses       131.10
Docket fees                     20.00
Total                         $972.70

On the morning of the 12th of May, 1859, C. H. Langston was brought into
court to receive his sentence.

The judge, having entered the "oyez, oyez" of the crier, announced the
opening of the court, and the rattling of the gavel of the bailiff soon
brought the immense crowd to silence. The business then proceeded as

THE COURT.--Mr. Langston, you will stand up, sir.

Mr. Langston arose.

THE COURT.--You have been tried, Mr. Langston, by a jury, and convicted
of a violation of the criminal laws of the United States. Have you or
your counsel anything to say why the sentence of the law should not be
pronounced upon you?

MR. LANGSTON.--I am for the first time in my life before a court of
justice, charged with the violation of law, and am now about to be
sentenced. But before receiving that sentence I propose to say one or
two words in regard to the mitigation of that sentence, if it may be so
construed. I can not, of course, and do not expect that what I may say
will in any way change your predetermined line of action. I ask no such
favor at your hands.

I know that the courts of this country, that the laws of this country,
that the governmental machinery of this country are so constituted as to
oppress and outrage colored men, men of my complexion. I cannot then, of
course, expect, judging from the past history of the country, any mercy
from the laws, from the Constitution, or from the courts of the country.

Some days prior to the 13th of September, 1858, happening to be in
Oberlin on a visit, I found the country round about there, and the
village itself, filled with alarming rumors as to the fact that
slave-catchers, kidnappers, and Negro stealers were lying hidden and
skulking about, awaiting some opportunity to get their bloody hands on
some helpless creature, to drag him back,--or for the first time,--into
helpless and lifelong bondage.

These reports becoming current all over that neighborhood, old men and
innocent women and children became exceedingly alarmed for their safety.
It was not uncommon to hear mothers say that they dare not send their
children to school, for fear that they would be caught up and carried
off by the way. Some of these people had become free by long and patient
toil at night, after working the long, long day for cruel masters, and
thus at length getting money enough to buy their liberty.

Others had become free by means of the good will of their masters. And
there were others who had become free--to their everlasting honor, I say
it--by the intensest exercise of their own God-given powers;--by
escaping from the plantations of their masters, eluding the
blood-thirsty patrols and sentinels so thickly scattered all along their
path, outrunning blood-hounds and horses, swimming rivers and fording
swamps, and reaching at last, through incredible difficulties, what
they, in their delusion, supposed to be free soil. These three classes
were in Oberlin, trembling alike for their safety because they well knew
their fate should these men-hunters get their hands on them.

In the midst of such excitement, the 13th day of September was ushered
in--a day ever memorable in the history of Oberlin, and I presume also,
in the history of this court. These men-hunters had, by lying devices,
decoyed into a place, where they could get their hands on him--I will
not say a slave, for I do not know that--but a _man_, _a brother_, who
had the right to his liberty under the laws of God, under the laws of
nature, and under the Declaration of American Independence.

In the midst of all this excitement the news came to us like a flash of
lightning that an actual seizure under and by means of fraudulent
pretenses, had been made! Being identified with that man by color, by
race, by manhood, by sympathies, such as God has implanted in us all, I
felt it my duty to go and do what I could towards liberating him. I had
been taught by my Revolutionary father--and I say this with all due
respect to him--and by his honored associates, that the fundamental
doctrine of this Government was, that _all_ men have a right to life and
liberty, and coming from the Old Dominion I had brought into Ohio these
sentiments deeply impressed upon my heart. I went to Wellington, and
hearing from the parties themselves by what authority the boy was held
in custody, I conceived from what little knowledge I had of law that
they had no right to hold him. And as your Honor has repeatedly laid
down the law in this court, a man is free until he is proven to be
legally restrained of his liberty. I believed that upon that principle
of law those men were bound to take their prisoner before the very first
magistrate they found and there establish the facts set forth in their
warrant, and that until they did this every man should presume that
their claim was unfounded, and to institute such proceedings for the
purpose of securing an investigation as they might find warranted by the
laws of this State.

Now, sir, if that is not the plain common sense and correct view of the
law, then I have been misled, both by your Honor and by the prevalent
received opinion. It is said that they had a warrant. Why then, should
they not establish its validity before the proper officers? And I stand
here to-day, sir, to say that with an exception, of which I shall soon
speak, _to procure such a lawful investigation of the authority under
which they claimed to act, was the part I took in that day's
proceedings, and the only part_. I supposed it to be my duty as a
citizen of Ohio--excuse me for saying that, sir,--as an _outlaw of the
United States_, (much sensation) to do what I could to secure at least
this form of justice to my brother, whose liberty was at
peril.--_Whatever more than that has been sworn to on this trial, as act
of mine, is false, ridiculously false._ When I found these men refusing
to go, according to the law, as I apprehended it, and subject their
claim to an official inspection, and that nothing short of a _habeas
corpus_ would oblige such an inspection, I was willing to go even thus
far, supposing in that county a sheriff might, perhaps, be found with
nerve enough to serve it. In this again, I failed. Nothing then was left
to me, nothing to the boy in custody, but the confirmation of my first
belief that the pretended authority was worthless, and the employment of
those means of liberation which belong to us. With regard to the part I
took in the forcible rescue, which followed, I have nothing to say,
further than I have already said. The evidence is before you. It is
alleged that I said "_We_ will have him anyhow." _This I NEVER said._ I
did say to Mr. Lowe, what I honestly believe to be the truth, that the
crowd was very much excited, many of them averse to longer delay and
bent upon a rescue at all hazards; and that he being an old acquaintance
and friend of mine, I was anxious to extricate him from the dangerous
position he occupied, and therefore advised Jennings to give the boy up.
Further than this I did not say, either to him or to anyone else.

The law under which I am arraigned is an unjust one, one made to crush
the colored man, and one that outrages every feeling of humanity, as
well as every rule of Right.

With its constitutionality I have nothing to do; about that I know but
little and care much less. But suppose it is constitutional, what then?
To tell me a law is constitutional which robs me of my _liberty_ is
simply ridiculous. I would curse the constitution that authorized the
enactment of such a law; I would trample the provisions of such a law
under my feet and defy its pains and penalties. I would respect and obey
such an inhuman law no more than OUR revolutionary fathers did the
odious and absurd doctrine that kings and tyrants reign and rule by
divine _right_. But it has often been said by learned and good men that
this law is unconstitutional. I remember the excitement that prevailed
throughout all the free States when it was passed; I remember, too, how
often it has been said by individuals, conventions, legislatures, and
even _Judges_ that it is not only unconstitutional, but that it never
could be, never should be, and never was meant to be enforced. I had
always believed, until the contrary appeared in the actual institution
of proceedings, that the provisions of this odious statute would never
be enforced within the bounds of this State.

But I have another reason to offer why I should not be sentenced, and
one that I think pertinent to the case. The common law of England--and
you will excuse me for referring to that, since I am not a lawyer, but a
private man--was that every man should be tried by a jury of men
occupying the same political and legal status _with himself_. Lords
should be tried before a jury of lords; peers of the realm should be
tried before peers of the realm; vassals before vassals. And even "where
an _alien_ was indicted, the jury _shall be demenietate_, or _half
foreigners_"; and a jury thus constituted were sworn "well and truly to
try and true deliverance make between the sovereign lord, the king, and
the prisoner whom they have in charge; and a true verdict to give
according to the evidence and without prejudice." The Constitution of
the United States guarantees--not merely to its citizens, but to _all
persons_--a trial before an impartial jury. I have had no such trial.

The colored man is oppressed by certain universal and deeply fixed
prejudices. Those jurors are well known to have shared largely in these
prejudices, and I therefore consider that they were neither impartial,
nor were they a jury of my peers. Politically and legally they are not
my equals. They have aided to form a State constitution which denies to
colored men citizenship, and under that constitution laws have been
enacted withholding from us many of our most valuable rights. These
unjust laws exclude colored men from the jury box and force us to be
tried in every case by jurors, not only filled with prejudices against
us, but far above us politically and legally, made so both by the
statute laws and by the Constitution. The prejudices which white people
have against colored men grow out of the fact that we have, as a people,
_consented_ for two hundred years to be _slaves_ of the whites. We have
been scourged, crushed, and cruelly oppressed, and have submitted to it
all tamely, meekly, peaceably; I mean, as a people, with rare individual
exceptions,--and to-day you see us thus meekly submitting to the
penalties of an infamous law. Now the Americans have this feeling, and
it is an honorable one, that they will respect those who rebel at
oppression, but despise those who tamely submit to outrage and wrong;
and while our people as a people submit, they will as a people be
despised. Why, they will hardly meet on terms of equality with us in a
whiskey shop, in a car, at a table, or even at the altar of God, so
thorough and hearty a contempt have they for those who _lie still_ under
the heel of the oppressor. The jury came into the box with that feeling.
They knew that they had that feeling, and so the Court knows now, and
knew then. The gentlemen who prosecuted me, the Court itself, and even
the counsel who defended me, have that feeling.

I was tried by a jury which was prejudiced; before a Court that was
prejudiced; prosecuted by an officer who was prejudiced, and defended,
though ably, by counsel who were prejudiced. And therefore it is, your
Honor, that I urge by all that is good and great in manhood, that I
should not be subjected to the pains and penalties of this oppressive
law, when I have not been tried, either by a jury of my peers, according
to the principles of the common law, or by an impartial jury according
to the Constitution of the United States.

One more word, sir, and I have done. I went to Wellington, knowing that
colored men have no rights in the United States which white men are
bound to respect; that the Courts had so decided; that Congress had so
enacted; that the people had so decreed.

There is not a spot in this wide country, not even by the altars of God,
nor in the shadow of the shafts that tell the imperishable fame and
glory of the heroes of the Revolution; no, nor in the old Philadelphia
Hall, where any colored man may dare to ask mercy of a white man. Let me
stand in that Hall and tell a United States marshal that my father was a
Revolutionary soldier; that he served under Lafayette, and fought
through the whole war, and that he fought for my freedom as much as for
his own; and he would sneer at me, and clutch me with his bloody
fingers, and say he has a _right_ to make me a slave! and when I appeal
to Congress, they say he has a right to make me a slave, and when I
appeal to your Honor, _your Honor_ says he has a right to make me a
slave. And if any man, white or black, seeks an investigation of that
claim, he makes himself amenable to the pains and penalties of the
BOUND TO RESPECT. (Great applause.) I, going to Wellington with the full
knowledge of all this, knew that if that man was taken to Columbus he
was hopelessly gone, no matter whether he had ever been in slavery
before or not. I knew that I was in the same situation myself, and that
by the decision of your Honor, if any man whatever were to claim me as
his slave and seize me, and my brother, being a lawyer, should seek to
get out a writ of _habeas corpus_ to expose the falsity of the claim, he
would be thrust into prison under one provision of the Fugitive Slave
Law, for interfering with the man claiming to be in pursuit of a
fugitive, and I, by the perjury of a solitary wretch, would by another
of its provisions be helplessly doomed to lifelong bondage, without the
possibility of escape.

Some may say that there is no danger of free persons being seized and
carried off as slaves. No one need labor under such a delusion. Sir,
_four_ of the eight persons who were first carried back under the act of
1850 were afterwards proved to be _free men_. They were free persons,
but wholly at the mercy of the oath of one man. And but last Sabbath
afternoon a letter came to me from a gentleman in St. Louis informing me
that a young lady, who was formerly under my instructions at Columbus, a
free person, is now lying in jail at that place, claimed as the slave of
some wretch who never saw her before, and waiting for testimony of
relatives at Columbus to establish her freedom. I could stand here by
the hour and relate such instances. In the very nature of the case, they
must be constantly occurring. A letter was not long since found upon the
person of a counterfeiter, when arrested, addressed to him by some
Southern gentleman, in which the writer says:

"Go among the niggers, find out their marks and scars; make good
descriptions and send to me, and I'll find masters for 'em."

That is the way men are carried _back_ to slavery.

But in view of all the facts, I say that, if ever again a man is seized
near me, and is about to be carried southward as a slave before any
legal investigation has been had, I shall hold it to be my duty, as I
held it that day, to secure for him, if possible, a legal inquiry into
the character of the claim by which he is held. And I go farther; I say
that if it is adjudged illegal to procure even such an investigation,
then we are thrown back upon those last defenses of our rights which
cannot be taken from us, and which God gave us that we need not be
slaves. I ask your Honor, while I say this, to place yourself in my
situation, and you will say with me that, if your brother, if your
friend, if your wife, if your child, had been seized by men who claimed
them as fugitives, and the law of the land forbade you to ask any
investigation, and precluded the possibility of any legal protection or
redress--then you will say with me that you would not only demand the
protection of the law, but you would call in your neighbors and your
friends, and would ask them to say with you, that, these, your friends,
_could not_ be taken into slavery.

And now, I thank you for this leniency, this indulgence, in giving a man
unjustly condemned, by a tribunal before which he is declared to have no
rights, the privilege of speaking in his own behalf. I know that it will
do nothing toward mitigating your sentence, but it is a privilege to be
allowed to speak, and I thank you for it. I shall submit to the penalty,
be it what it may. But I stand up here to say that if for doing what I
did on that day at Wellington, I am to go to jail for six months, and
pay a fine of a thousand dollars, according to the Fugitive Slave Law,
and if such is the protection the laws of this country afford me, I must
take upon myself the responsibility of self-protection; when I come to
be claimed by some perjured wretch as his slave, I shall never be taken
into slavery. And in that trying hour, I would have others do to me, as
I would call upon my friends to help me; as I would call upon you, your
Honor, to help me, as I would call upon you (to the District Attorney)
to help me, and upon you (to Judge Bliss), and you (his counsel) _so
help me God_! I stand here to say that I will do all I can for any man
thus seized and held, though the inevitable penalty of six months'
imprisonment and one thousand dollars fine for each offense hang over
me! We have all a common humanity, and that humanity will, if rightly
exercised, compel us to aid each other when our rights are invaded. The
man who can see a fellow man wronged and outraged without assisting him
must have lost all the manly feelings of his nature. You would all
assist any man under such circumstances; your manhood would require it;
and no matter what the laws might be, you would honor yourself for doing
it, while your friends and your children to all generations would honor
you for doing it, and every good and honest man would say you had done
_right_! (Great and prolonged applause, in spite of the efforts of the
Court and marshal.)

Judge Willson remarked: Mr. Langston, you do the Court injustice in
supposing the remarks were called out as a mere idle form, or would not
get a respectful consideration from the Court.

It is not the duty of the Court to make the laws--that is left to other
tribunals; but our duty, under an official oath, is to administer the
laws, good or bad, as we find them.

I find many mitigating circumstances in your case, and the sentence will
therefore be, that you pay a fine of one hundred dollars and the costs
of suit, and be imprisoned in jail for twenty days, and it shall be the
duty of the Marshal to see the imprisonment carried out in this or some
other county jail in this district.



RICHARD T. GREENER, _as far as is known, was the first Negro to be
graduated from Harvard University with the degree of Bachelor of Arts.
He received the degree of LL.D. both from Howard University and from
Liberia College, Monrovia, of which he was the dean for some time. In
1897 he was appointed United States Consul to Vladivostok, and served
through the Russian-Japanese War. While in this official capacity he was
decorated by the Chinese Government with the order of the "Double
Dragon," the only Negro ever so honored._

The adage which was once so common, if not so thoroughly axiomatic as to
gain universal credence--"Old men for council and young men for
war"--assumes additional notoriety to-day, when the old men are
quarreling in the council chamber and the young men are kept outside the
door. While the young men are willing to allow much to the school of
experience, many of them are the followers of Locke, and believe in the
doctrine of innate ideas. They believe, to continue the comparison, that
experience and wisdom do not always spring from length of years, nor
does ignorance appertain to youth as a necessity. They dare assert that,
as there are those who would never be men, lived they to be as old as
Methuselah, so there are some whose minds are as well filled, whose
judgments are as mature at twenty-five and eight, and their energy as
decisive as though they were in their tenth lustrum. Conscious of this
fact, it is the absurdity of folly for the young colored men of the
country to sit idly by and see the grandest opportunities slipping away,
the best cases lost by default because of the lack of energy displayed
by many of our so-called leaders who have been longer on the field. With
some very few exceptions, honorable as they are rare, they have done
well for their day and generation; but with regard to the needs and
policy of the Negroes of the present hour they are as innocent as babes.
Men for the most part of excellent temper and good working capacity,
they lack that which is the handmaid and often the indispensable
auxiliary of knowledge and all effective work--judgment. Unconscious
puppets often, they dance to unseen music, moved themselves by hidden

The convention was the favorite resort of the leading Negro of ten years
ago. He convened and resolved, resolved and unconvened--read his own
speeches, was delighted with his own frothy rhetoric, and really
imagined himself a great man. He talked eloquently then, it must be
granted, because he spoke of his wrongs; but when the war overturned the
edifice of slavery "Othello's occupation" was "gone," indeed. The number
who have survived and held their own under the new order of things may
be counted upon one hand. They survive through that grand old law so
much combated but ever true--the survival of the fittest. They alone
give character and reputation to the Negro. They make for him a fame
which begets respect where his wrongs only excited pity. The field is
comparatively clear now some of the older hacks have fallen by the way
or lie spavined at the roadside. The question is, Will the young men of
color throughout the country resolve to begin now to take part in public
affairs, asserting their claim wherever it is denied, maintaining it
wherever contested, and show that the young may be safe in counsel as
well as good for war?

There are some who arrogate to themselves wisdom because of their years,
just as some equally absurd people think they are wise because they
never went to a high school or an academy--men, Heaven save the mark!
who pride themselves on having never slaked their thirst at the fount of
knowledge. It is not our purpose to disparage age. We remember what
Cicero has written, so delightfully, of its pleasures; what Cephalus and
Socrates thought of it in the Republic. We look "toward sunset" with
reverence and respect; but it is with a reverence that makes us
conscious of our own duty. The young men are now studying, working,
some, alas! idling away their time who ought to be the active, earnest
men in the next Presidential campaign; young men who are to control the
destinies of the race. Many of them are of marked ability and decidedly
energetic in character. Not so fluent, perhaps, as their fathers, they
are more thoughtful. They are found throughout the country. We feel
that, if like Roderick Dhu, we should put the whistle to our lips and
blow a stirring blast, they would spring up in every part of the country
ready with voice, pen, or muscle to do their share in any honorable
work. In spirit we do this, as young men ourselves, willing to blow a
blast which, would that the young men of the country would hear and
heed! Young men, to the front! Young men, rouse yourselves! Take the
opportunities; make them where they are denied! "Quit you like men; be

_Young men, to the front!_



_Representative from South Carolina_

[Note 6: Extracts from a speech delivered in the House of
Representatives, January 6, 1874.]

_Mr. Speaker:_

While I am sincerely grateful for this high mark of courtesy that has
been accorded to me by this House, it is a matter of regret to me that
it is necessary at this day that I should rise in the presence of an
American Congress to advocate a bill which simply asserts equal rights
and equal public privileges for all classes of American citizens. I
regret, sir, that the dark hue of my skin may lend a color to the
imputation that I am controlled by motives personal to myself in my
advocacy of this great measure of national justice. Sir, the motive that
impels me is restricted by no such narrow boundary, but is as broad as
your Constitution. I advocate it, sir, because it is right. The bill,
however, not only appeals to your justice, but it demands a response
from your gratitude.

In the events that led to the achievement of American independence the
Negro was not an inactive or unconcerned spectator. He bore his part
bravely upon many battlefields, although uncheered by that certain hope
of political elevation which victory would secure to the white man. The
tall granite shaft, which a grateful State has reared above its sons who
fell in defending Fort Griswold against the attack of Benedict Arnold,
bears the name of Jordan, Freeman, and other brave men of the African
race, who there cemented with their blood the corner-stone of the
Republic. In the State which I have the honor in part to represent
(South Carolina) the rifle of the black man rang out against the troops
of the British Crown in the darkest days of the American Revolution.
Said General Greene, who has been justly termed the "Washington of the
North," in a letter written by him to Alexander Hamilton, on the 10th of
January, 1781, from the vicinity of Camden, South Carolina: "There is no
such thing as national character or national sentiment. The inhabitants
are numerous, but they would be rather formidable abroad than at home.
There is a great spirit of enterprise among the black people, and those
that come out as volunteers are not a little formidable to the enemy."

At the battle of New Orleans under the immortal Jackson, a colored
regiment held the extreme right of the American line unflinchingly, and
drove back the British column that pressed upon them at the point of the
bayonet. So marked was their valor on that occasion that it evoked from
their great commander the warmest encomiums, as will be seen from his
dispatch announcing the brilliant victory.

As the gentleman from Kentucky (Mr. Beck), who seems to be the leading
exponent on this floor of the party that is arrayed against the
principle of this bill, has been pleased, in season and out of season,
to cast odium upon the Negro and to vaunt the chivalry of his State, I
may be pardoned for calling attention to another portion of the same
dispatch. Referring to the various regiments under his command, and
their conduct on that field which terminated the second war of American
Independence, General Jackson says. "At the very moment when the entire
discomfiture of the enemy was looked for with a confidence amounting to
certainty, the Kentucky reinforcements, in whom so much reliance had
been placed, ingloriously fled."

In quoting this indisputable piece of history, I do so only by way of
admonition and not to question the well-attested gallantly of the true
Kentuckian, and to the gentleman that it would be well that he should
not flaunt his heraldry so proudly while he bears this bar-sinister on
the military escutcheon of his State--a State which answered the call of
the Republic in 1861, when treason thundered at the very gates of the
Capital, by coldly declaring her neutrality in the impending struggle.
The Negro, true to that patriotism and love of country that have ever
marked and characterized his history on this continent, came to the aid
of the Government in its efforts to maintain the Constitution. To that
Government he now appeals; that Constitution he now invokes for
protection against outrage and unjust prejudices founded upon caste.

But, sir, we are told by the distinguished gentleman from Georgia (Mr.
Stephens) that Congress has no power under the Constitution to pass such
a law, and that the passage of such an act is in direct contravention
of the rights of the States. I cannot assent to any such proposition.
The Constitution of a free government ought always to be construed in
favor of human rights. Indeed, the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth
amendments, in positive words, invest Congress with the power to protect
the citizen in his civil and political rights. Now, sir, what are civil
rights? Rights natural, modified by civil society. Mr. Lieber says: "By
civil liberty is meant, not only the absence of individual restraint,
but liberty within the social system and political organism--a
combination of principles, and laws which acknowledge, protect, and
favor the dignity of man * * * civil liberty is the result of man's two
fold character as an individual and social being, so soon as both are
equally respected."[7]

[Note 7: Lieber on Civil Liberty, page 25.]

Alexander Hamilton, the right-hand man of Washington in the perilous
days of the then infant Republic; the great interpreter and expounder of
the Constitution, says: "Natural liberty is the gift of a beneficent
Creator to the whole human race; civil liberty is founded on it, civil
liberty is only natural liberty modified and secured by civil

[Note 8: Hamilton's History of the American Republic, Vol. I, page

* * * * *

Are we then, sir, with the amendments to our constitution staring us in
the face; with these grand truths of history before our eyes; with
innumerable wrongs daily inflicted upon five million citizens demanding
redress, to commit this question to the diversity of legislation? In the
words of Hamilton--"Is it the interest of the Government to sacrifice
individual rights to the preservation of the rights of an artificial
being called the States? There can be no truer principle than this, that
every individual of the community at large has an equal right to the
protection of Government. Can this be a free Government if partial
distinctions are tolerated or maintained?"

The rights contended for in this bill are among "the sacred rights of
mankind, which are not to be rummaged for among old parchments or musty
records; they are written as with a sunbeam in the whole volume of human
nature, by the hand of the Divinity itself, and can never be erased or
obscured by mortal power."

But the Slaughter-house cases!--The Slaughter-house cases!

The honorable gentleman from Kentucky, always swift to sustain the
failing and dishonored cause of proscription, rushes forward and flaunts
in our faces the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in
the Slaughter-house cases, and in that act he has been willingly aided
by the gentleman from Georgia. Hitherto, in the contests which have
marked the progress of the cause of equal civil rights, our opponents
have appealed sometimes to custom, sometimes to prejudice, more often to
pride of race, but they have never sought to shield themselves behind
the Supreme Court. But now for the first time, we are told that we are
barred by a decision of that court, from which there is no appeal. If
this be true we must stay our hands. The cause of equal civil rights
must pause at the command of a power whose edicts must be obeyed till
the fundamental law of our country is changed.

Has the honorable gentleman from Kentucky considered well the claim he
now advances? If it were not disrespectful I would ask, has he ever read
the decision which he now tells us is an insuperable barrier to the
adoption of this great measure of justice?

In the consideration of this subject, has not the judgment of the
gentleman from Georgia been warped by the ghost of the dead doctrines of
States-rights? Has he been altogether free from prejudices engendered by
long training in that school of politics that well-nigh destroyed this

Mr. Speaker, I venture to say here in the presence of the gentleman from
Kentucky, and the gentleman from Georgia, and in the presence of the
whole country, that there is not a line or word, not a thought or dictum
even, in the decision of the Supreme Court in the great Slaughter-house
cases, which casts a shadow of doubt on the right of Congress to pass
the pending bill, or to adopt such other legislation as it may judge
proper and necessary to secure perfect equality before the law to every
citizen of the Republic. Sir, I protest against the dishonor now cast
upon our Supreme Court by both the gentleman from Kentucky and the
gentleman from Georgia. In other days, when the whole country was bowing
beneath the yoke of slavery, when press, pulpit, platform, Congress and
courts felt the fatal power of the slave oligarchy, I remember a
decision of that court which no American now reads without shame and
humiliation. But those days are past; the Supreme Court of to-day is a
tribunal as true to freedom as any department of this Government, and I
am honored with the opportunity of repelling a deep disgrace which the
gentleman from Kentucky, backed and sustained as he is by the gentleman
from Georgia, seeks to put upon it.

* * * * *

The amendments in the Slaughter-house cases one and all, are thus
declared to have as their all-pervading design and ends the security of
the recently enslaved race, not only their nominal freedom, but their
complete protection from those who had formerly exercised unlimited
dominion over them. It is in this broad light that all these amendments
must be read, the purpose to secure the perfect equality before the law
of all citizens of the United States. What you give to one class you
must give to all, what you deny to one class you shall deny to all,
unless in the exercise of the common and universal police power of the
State, you find it needful to confer exclusive privileges on certain
citizens, to be held and exercised still for the common good of all.

Such are the doctrines of the Slaughter-house cases--doctrines worthy of
the Republic, worthy of the age, worthy of the great tribunal which thus
loftily and impressively enunciates them. Do they--I put it to any man,
be he lawyer or not; I put it to the gentleman from Georgia--do they
give color even to the claim that this Congress may not now legislate
against a plain discrimination made by State laws or State customs
against that very race for whose complete freedom and protection these
great amendments were elaborated and adopted? Is it pretended, I ask the
honorable gentleman from Kentucky or the honorable gentleman from
Georgia--is it pretended anywhere that the evils of which we complain,
our exclusion from the public inn, from the saloon and table of the
steamboat, from the sleeping-coach on the railway, from the right of
sepulture in the public burial-ground, are an exercise of the police
power of the State? Is such oppression and injustice nothing but the
exercise by the State of the right to make regulations for the health,
comfort, and security of all her citizens? Is it merely enacting that
one man shall so use his own as not to injure anothers? Is the colored
race to be assimilated to an unwholesome trade or to combustible
materials, to be interdicted, to be shut up within prescribed limits?
Let the gentleman from Kentucky or the gentleman from Georgia answer.
Let the country know to what extent even the audacious prejudice of the
gentleman from Kentucky will drive him, and how far even the gentleman
from Georgia will permit himself to be led captive by the unrighteous
teachings of a false political faith.

If we are to be likened in legal view to "unwholesome trades," to "large
and offensive collections of animals" to "noxious slaughter-houses," to
"the offal and stench which attend on certain manufactures" let it be
avowed. If that is still the doctrine of the political party, to which
the gentlemen belong, let it be put upon record. If State laws which
deny us the common rights and privileges of other citizens, upon no
possible or conceivable ground save one of prejudice, or of "taste" as
the gentleman from Texas termed it, and as I suppose the gentlemen will
prefer to call it, are to be placed under the protection of a decision
which affirms the right of a State to regulate the police power of her
great cities, then the decision is in conflict with the bill before us.
No man will dare maintain such a doctrine. It is as shocking to the
legal mind as it is offensive to the heart and conscience of all who
love justice or respect manhood. I am astonished that the gentleman from
Kentucky or the gentleman from Georgia should have been so grossly
misled as to rise here and assert that the decision of the Supreme Court
in these cases was a denial to Congress of the power to legislate
against discriminations on account of race, color, or previous
conditions of servitude because that Court has decided that exclusive
privileges conferred for the common protection of the lives and health
of the whole community are not in violation of the recent amendments.
The only ground upon which the grant of exclusive privileges to a
portion of the community is ever defended is that the substantial good
of all is promoted; that in truth it is for the welfare of the whole
community that certain persons should alone pursue certain occupations.
It is not the special benefit conferred on the few that moves the
legislature, but the ultimate and real benefit of all, even of those who
are denied the right to pursue those specified occupations. Does the
gentleman from Kentucky say that my good is promoted when I am excluded
from the public inn? Is the health or safety of the community promoted?
Doubtless his prejudice is gratified. Doubtless his democratic instincts
are pleased; but will he or his able coadjutor say that such exclusion
is a lawful exercise of the police power of the State, or that it is not
a denial to me of the equal protection of the laws? They will not so

But each of these gentlemen quote at some length from the decision of
the court to show that the court recognizes a difference between
citizenship of the United States and citizenship of the States. That is
true and no man here who supports this bill questions or overlooks the
difference. There are privileges and immunities which belong to me as a
citizen of the United States, and there are other privileges and
immunities which belong to me as a citizen of my State. The former are
under the protection of the Constitution and laws of the United States,
and the latter are under the protection of the Constitution and laws of
my State. But what of that? Are the rights which I now claim--the right
to enjoy the common public conveniences of travel on public highways, of
rest and refreshment at public inns, of education in public schools, of
burial in public cemeteries--rights which I hold as a citizen of the
United States or of my State? Or, to state the question more exactly, is
not the denial of such privileges to me a denial to me of the equal
protection of the laws? For it is under this clause of the fourteenth
amendment that we place the present bill, no State shall "deny to any
person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." No
matter, therefore, whether his rights are held under the United States
or under his particular State he is equally protected by this amendment.
He is always and everywhere entitled to the equal protection of the
laws. All discrimination is forbidden; and while the rights of citizens
of a State as such are not defined or conferred by the Constitution of
the United States, yet all discrimination, all denial of equality before
the law, all denial of equal protection of the laws whether State or
national laws, is forbidden.

The distinction between the two kinds of citizenship is clear, and the
Supreme Court has clearly pointed out this distinction, but it has
nowhere written a word or line which denies to Congress the power to
prevent a denial of equality of rights whether those rights exist by
virtue of citizenship of the United States or of a State. Let honorable
members mark well this distinction. There are rights which are conferred
on us by the United States. There are other rights conferred on us by
the states of which we are individually the citizens. The fourteenth
amendment does not forbid a state to deny to all its citizens any of
those rights which the state itself has conferred with certain
exceptions which are pointed out in the decision which we are examining.
What it does forbid is inequality, is discrimination or, to use the
words of the amendment itself, is the denial "to any person within its
jurisdiction, the equal protection of the laws." If a State denies to me
rights which are common to all her other citizens, she violates this
amendment, unless she can show, as was shown in the Slaughter-house
cases, that she does it in the legitimate exercise of her police power.
If she abridges the rights of all her citizens equally, unless those
rights are specifically guarded by the Constitution of the United
States, she does not violate this amendment. This is not to put the
rights which I hold by virtue of my citizenship of South Carolina under
the protection of the national Government; it is not to blot out or
overlook in the slightest particular the distinction between rights held
under the United States and rights held under the States; but it seeks
to secure equality to prevent discrimination, to confer as complete and
ample protection on the humblest as on the highest.

The gentleman from Kentucky, in the course of the speech to which I am
now replying, made a reference to the State of Massachusetts which
betrays again the confusion which exists in his mind on this precise
point. He tells us that Massachusetts excludes from the ballot-box all
who cannot read and write, and points to that fact as the exercise of a
right which this bill would abridge or impair. The honorable gentleman
from Massachusetts (Mr. Dawes) answered him truly and well, but I submit
that he did not make the best reply, why did he not ask the gentleman
from Kentucky if Massachusetts had ever discriminated against any of her
citizens on account of color, or race, or previous condition of
servitude? When did Massachusetts sully her proud record by placing on
her statute-book any law which admitted to the ballot the white man and
shut out the black man. She has never done it; she will not do it; she
cannot do it so long as we have a Supreme Court which reads the
Constitution of our country with the eyes of Justice; nor can
Massachusetts or Kentucky deny to any man on account of his race,
color, or previous condition of servitude, that perfect equality of
protection under the laws so long as Congress shall exercise the power
to enforce by appropriate legislation the great and unquestionable
securities embodied in the fourteenth amendment to the Constitution.

* * * * *

Now, sir, having spoken of the prohibition imposed by Massachusetts, I
may be pardoned for a slight inquiry as to the effect of this
prohibition. First, it did not in any way abridge or curtail the
exercise of the suffrage by any person who enjoyed such right. Nor did
it discriminate against the illiterate native and the illiterate
foreigner. Being enacted for the good of the entire commonwealth, like
all just laws, its obligations fell equally and impartially on all its
citizens. And as a justification for such a measure, it is a fact too
well known almost for mention here that Massachusetts had, from the
beginning of her history, recognized the inestimable value of an
educated ballot, by not only maintaining a system of free schools, but
also enforcing an attendance thereupon, as one of the safeguards for the
preservation of a real republican form of government. Recurring then,
sir, to the possible contingency alluded to by the gentleman from
Kentucky, should the State of Kentucky, having first established a
system of common schools whose doors shall swing open freely to all, as
contemplated by the provisions of this bill, adopt a provision similar
to that of Massachusetts, no one would have cause justly to complain.
And if in the coming years the result of such legislation should produce
a constituency rivaling that of the Old Bay State, no one would be more
highly gratified than I. Mr. Speaker, I have neither the time nor the
inclination to notice the many illogical and forced conclusions, the
numerous transfers of terms, or the vulgar insinuations which further
encumber the argument of the gentleman from Kentucky. Reason and
argument are worse than wasted upon those who meet every demand for
political and civil liberty by such ribaldry as this--extracted from the
speech of the gentleman from Kentucky: "I suppose there are gentlemen on
this floor who would arrest, imprison, and fine a young woman in any
State of the South if she were to refuse to marry a Negro man on account
of color, race, or previous condition of servitude, in the event of his
making her a proposal of marriage, and her refusing on that ground. That
would be depriving him of a right he had under the amendment, and
Congress would be asked to take it up and say, 'This insolent white
woman must be taught to know that it is a misdemeanor to deny a man
marriage because of race, color, or previous condition of servitude,'
and Congress will be urged to say after a while that that sort of thing
must be put a stop to, and your conventions of colored men will come
here asking you to enforce that right."

Now, sir, recurring to the venerable and distinguished gentleman from
Georgia (Mr. Stephens) who has added his remonstrance against the
passage of this bill, permit me to say that I share in the feeling of
high personal regard for that gentleman which pervades this House. His
years, his ability, and his long experience in public affairs entitle
him to the measure of consideration which has been accorded to him on
this floor. But in this discussion I cannot and will not forget that the
welfare and rights of my whole race in this country are involved. When,
therefore, the honorable gentleman from Georgia lends his voice and
influence to defeat this measure, I do not shrink from saying that it is
not from him that the American House of Representatives should take
lessons in matters touching human rights or the joint relations of the
State and national governments. While the honorable gentleman contented
himself with harmless speculations in his study, or in the columns of a
newspaper, we might well smile at the impotence of his efforts to turn
back the advancing tide of opinion and progress; but, when he comes
again upon this national arena, and throws himself with all his power
and influence across the path which leads to the full enfranchisement of
my race, I meet him only as an adversary; nor shall age or any other
consideration restrain me from saying that he now offers this Government
which he has done his utmost to destroy, a very poor return for its
magnanimous treatment, to come here and seek to continue, by the
assertion of doctrines obnoxious to the true principles of our
Government, the burdens and oppressions which rest upon five millions of
his countrymen who never failed to lift their earnest prayers for the
success of this Government when the gentleman was seeking to break up
the union of these States and to blot the American Republic from the
galaxy of nations.

Sir, it is scarcely twelve years since that gentleman shocked the
civilized world by announcing the birth of a government which rested on
human slavery as its corner-stone. The progress of events has swept away
that pseudo-government which rested on greed, pride, and tyranny; and
the race whom he then ruthlessly spurned and trampled on is here to meet
him in debate, and to demand that the rights which are enjoyed by its
former oppressors--who vainly sought to overthrow a Government which
they could not prostitute to the base uses of slavery--shall be accorded
to those who even in the darkness of slavery kept their allegiance true
to freedom and the Union. Sir, the gentleman from Georgia has learned
much since 1861; but he is still a laggard. Let him put away entirely
the false and fatal theories which have so greatly marred an otherwise
enviable record. Let him accept, in its fullness and beneficence, the
great doctrine that American citizenship carries with it every civil and
political right which manhood can confer. Let him lend his influence
with all his masterly ability, to complete the proud structure of
legislation which makes this nation worthy of the great declaration
which heralded its birth and he will have done that which will most
nearly redeem his reputation in the eyes of the world, and best
vindicate the wisdom of that policy which has permitted him to regain
his seat upon this floor.

To the diatribe of the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Harris) who spoke
yesterday, and who so far transcended the limits of decency and
propriety as to announce upon this floor that his remarks were addressed
to white men alone, I shall have no word of reply. Let him feel that a
Negro was not only too magnanimous to smite him in his weakness, but was
even charitable enough to grant him the mercy of his silence. I shall,
sir, leave to others less charitable the unenviable and fatiguing task
of sifting out of that mass of chaff the few grains of sense that may,
perchance deserve notice. Assuring the gentleman that the Negro in this
country aims at a higher degree of intellect than that exhibited by him
in this debate, I cheerfully commend him to the commiseration of all
intelligent men the world over--black men as well as white men.

Sir, equality before the law is now the broad, universal, glorious rule
and mandate of the Republic. No State can violate that. Kentucky and
Georgia may crowd their statute-books with retrograde and barbarous
legislation; they may rejoice in the odious eminence of their consistent
hostility to all the great steps of human progress which have marked our
national history since slavery tore down the stars and stripes on Fort
Sumter; but, if Congress shall do its duty, if Congress shall enforce
the great guarantees which the Supreme Court has declared to be the one
pervading purpose of all the recent amendments, then their unwise and
unenlightened conduct will fall with the same weight upon the gentlemen
from those States who now lend their influence to defeat this bill, as
upon the poorest slave who once had no rights which the honorable
gentlemen were bound to respect.

But, sir, not only does the decision in the Slaughter-house cases
contain nothing which suggests a doubt of the power of Congress to pass
the pending bill, but it contains an express recognition and affirmance
of such power. I quote from page 81 of the volume: "Nor shall any State
deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the

In the light of the history of these amendments, and the pervading
purpose of them which we have already discussed, it is not difficult to
give a meaning to this clause. The existence of laws in the States where
the newly emancipated Negroes resided, which discriminated with gross
injustice and hardship against them as a class, was the evil to be
remedied by this clause, and by it such laws are forbidden.

If, however, the States did not conform their views to its requirements,
then, by the fifth section of the article of amendment, Congress was
authorized to enforce it by suitable legislation. We doubt very much
whether any action of a State not directed by way of discrimination
against the Negroes as a class, or on account of their race, will ever
be held to come within the purview of this provision. It is so clearly a
provision for that race and that emergency, that a strong case would be
necessary for its application to any other. But as it is a State that is
to be dealt with, and not alone the validity of its laws, we may safely
leave that matter until Congress shall have exercised its power, or some
case of State oppression, by denial of equal justice in its courts,
shall have claimed a decision at our hands.

No language could convey a more complete assertion of the power of
Congress over the subject embraced in the present bill than is here
expressed. If the States do not conform to the requirements of this
clause, if they continue to deny to any person within their jurisdiction
the equal protection of the laws, or as the Supreme Court had said "deny
equal justice in its Courts" then Congress is here said to have power to
enforce the Constitutional guarantee by appropriate legislation. That is
the power which this bill now seeks to put in exercise.

It proposes to enforce the Constitutional guarantee against inequality
and discrimination by appropriate legislation. It does not seek to
confer new rights, nor to place rights conferred by State citizenship
under the protection of the United States, but simply to prevent and
forbid inequality and discrimination on account of race, color, or
previous condition of servitude. Never was there a bill which appealed
for support more strongly to that sense of justice and fair play which
has been said, and in the main with justice, to be a characteristic of
the Anglo-Saxon race. The Constitution warrants it; the Supreme Court
sanctions it; justice demands it.

Sir, I have replied to the extent of my ability to the arguments which
have been presented by the opponents of this measure. I have replied
also to some of the legal propositions advanced by gentlemen on the
other side; and now that I am about to conclude, I am deeply sensible of
the imperfect manner in which I have performed the task. Technically,
this bill is to decide upon the civil status of the colored American
citizen; a point disputed at the very formation of our present form of
government, when by a short-sighted policy, a policy repugnant to true
republican government, one Negro counted as three-fifth of a man. The
logical result of this mistake of the framers of the Constitution
strengthened the cancer of slavery, which finally spread its poisonous
tentacles over the southern portion of the body politic. To arrest its
growth and save the nation we have passed through the harrowing
operation of intestine war, dreaded at all times, resorted to at the
last extremity, like the surgeon's knife, but absolutely necessary to
extirpate the disease which threatened with the life of the nation the
overthrow of civil and political liberty on this continent. In that dire
extremity the members of the race which I have the honor in part to
represent--the race which pleads for justice at your hands
to-day,--forgetful of their inhuman and brutalizing servitude at the
South, their degradation and ostracism at the North, flew willingly and
gallantly to the support of the national Government.

Their sufferings, assistance, privations, and trials in the swamps and
in the rice-fields, their valor on the land and on the sea, form a part
of the ever-glorious record which makes up the history of a nation
preserved, and might, should I urge the claim, incline you to respect
and guarantee their rights and privileges as citizens of our common
Republic. But I remember that valor, devotion, and loyalty are not
always rewarded according to their just deserts, and that after the
battle some who have borne the brunt of the fray may, through neglect
or contempt, be assigned to a subordinate place, while the enemies in
war may be preferred to the sufferers.

The results of the war, as seen in reconstruction, have settled forever
the political status of my race. The passage of this bill will determine
the civil status, not only of the Negro, but of any other class of
citizens who may feel themselves discriminated against. It will form the
cap-stone of that temple of liberty, begun on this continent under
discouraging circumstances, carried on in spite of the sneers of
monarchists and the cavils of pretended friends of freedom, until at
last it stands, in all its beautiful symmetry and proportions, a
building the grandest which the world has ever seen, realizing the most
sanguine expectations and the highest hopes of those who, in the name of
equal, impartial, and universal liberty, laid the foundation-stone.

The Holy Scriptures tell us of an humble handmaiden who long,
faithfully, and patiently gleaned in the rich fields of her wealthy
kinsman, and we are told further that at last, in spite of her humble
antecedents she found favor in his sight. For over two centuries our
race has "reaped down your fields," the cries and woes which we have
uttered have "entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth" and we are
at last politically free. The last vestiture only is needed--civil
rights. Having gained this, we may, with hearts overflowing with
gratitude and thankful that our prayer has been answered, repeat the
prayer of Ruth: "Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from
following after thee; for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou
lodgest, I will lodge; thy people shall be my people, and thy God my
God; where thou diest I will die, and there will I be buried; the Lord
do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me."



[Note 9: A speech delivered in the House of Representatives,
February 3, 1875.]

The House having under consideration the civil-rights bill, Mr. Lynch

_Mr. Speaker:_

I will now endeavor to answer the arguments of those who have been
contending that the passage of this bill is an effort to bring about
social equality between the races. That the passage of this bill can in
any manner affect the social status of any one seems to me to be absurd
and ridiculous. I have never believed for a moment that social equality
could be brought about even between persons of the same race. I have
always believed that social distinctions existed among white people the
same as among colored people. But those who contend that the passage of
this bill will have a tendency to bring about social equality between
the races virtually and substantially admit that there are no social
distinctions among white people whatever, but that all white persons,
regardless of their moral character, are the social equals of each
other; for if by conferring upon colored people the same rights and
privileges that are now exercised and enjoyed by whites indiscriminately
will result in bringing about social equality between the races, then
the same process of reasoning must necessarily bring us to the
conclusion that there are no social distinctions among whites, because
all white persons, regardless of their social standing, are permitted to
enjoy these rights. See then how unreasonable, unjust, and false is the
assertion that social equality is involved in this legislation. I cannot
believe that gentlemen on the other side of the House mean what they say
when they admit as they do that the immoral, the ignorant, and the
degraded of their own race are the social equals of themselves and their
families. If they do, then I can only assure them that they do not put
as high an estimate upon their own social standing as respectable and
intelligent colored people place upon theirs; for there are hundreds and
thousands of white people of both sexes whom I know to be the social
inferiors of respectable and intelligent colored people. I can then
assure that portion of my Democratic friends on the other side of the
House whom I regard as my social inferiors that if at any time I should
meet any one of you at a hotel and occupy a seat at the same table with
you, or the same seat in a car with you, do not think that I have
thereby accepted you as my social equal. Not at all. But if any one
should attempt to discriminate against you for no other reason than
because you are identified with a particular race or religious sect, I
would regard it as an outrage; as a violation of the principles of
republicanism; and I would be in favor of protecting you in the exercise
and enjoyment of your rights by suitable and appropriate legislation.

No, Mr. Speaker, it is not social rights that we desire. We have enough
of that already. What we ask is protection in the enjoyment of _public_
rights. Rights which are or should be accorded to every citizen alike.
Under our present system of race distinctions a white woman of a
questionable social standing, yea, I may say, of an admitted immoral
character, can go to any public place or upon any public conveyance and
be the recipient of the same treatment, the same courtesy, and the same
respect that is usually accorded to the most refined and virtuous; but
let an intelligent, modest, refined colored lady present herself and ask
that the same privileges be accorded to her that have just been accorded
to her social inferior of the white race, and in nine cases out of ten,
except in certain portions of the country, she will not only be refused,
but insulted for making the request.

Mr. Speaker, I ask the members of this House in all candor, is this
right? I appeal to your sensitive feelings as husbands, fathers, and
brothers, is this just? You who have affectionate companions, attractive
daughters, and loving sisters, is this just? If you have any of the
ingredients of manhood in your composition you will answer the question
most emphatically, No! What a sad commentary upon our system of
government, our religion, and our civilization! Think of it for a
moment; here am I, a member of your honorable body, representing one of
the largest and wealthiest districts in the State of Mississippi, and
possibly in the South; a district composed of persons of different
races, religions, and nationalities and yet, when I leave my home to
come to the capital of the nation, to take part in the deliberations of
the House and to participate with you in making laws for the government
of this great Republic, in coming through the God-forsaken States of
Kentucky and Tennessee, if I come by the way of Louisville or
Chattanooga, I am treated, not as an American citizen, but as a brute.
Forced to occupy a filthy smoking-car both night and day, with
drunkards, gamblers, and criminals; and for what? Not that I am unable
or unwilling to pay my way; not that I am obnoxious in my personal
appearance or disrespectful in my conduct; but simply because I happen
to be of a darker complexion. If this treatment was confined to persons
of our own sex we could possibly afford to endure it. But such is not
the case. Our wives and our daughters, our sisters and our mothers, are
subjected to the same insults and to the same uncivilized treatment. You
may ask why we do not institute civil suits in the State courts. What a
farce! Talk about instituting a civil-rights suit in the State courts of
Kentucky, for instance, where decision of the judge is virtually
rendered before he enters the court-house, and the verdict of the jury
substantially rendered before it is impaneled. The only moments of my
life when I am necessarily compelled to question my loyalty to my
Government or my devotion to the flag of my country is when I read of
outrages having been committed upon innocent colored people and the
perpetrators go unwhipped of justice, and when I leave my home to go

Mr. Speaker, if this unjust discrimination is to be longer tolerated by
the American people, which I do not, cannot, and will not believe until
I am forced to do so, then I can only say with sorrow and regret that
our boasted civilization is a fraud; our republican institutions a
failure; our social system a disgrace; and our religion a complete
hypocrisy. But I have an abiding confidence--(though I must confess that
that confidence was seriously shaken a little over two months ago)--but
still I have an abiding confidence in the patriotism of this people, in
their devotion to the cause of human rights, and in the stability of our
republican institutions. I hope that I will not be deceived. I love the
land that gave me birth; I love the Stars and Stripes. This country is
where I intend to live, where I expect to die. To preserve the honor of
the national flag and to maintain perpetually the Union of the States
hundreds, and I may say thousands, of noble, brave, and true-hearted
colored men have fought, bled, and died. And now, Mr. Speaker, I ask,
can it be possible that that flag under which they fought is to be a
shield and a protection to all races and classes of persons except the
colored race? God forbid!

* * * * *

In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I say to the Republican members of the House
that the passage of this bill is expected of you. If any of our
Democratic friends will vote for it, we will be agreeably surprised. But
if Republicans should vote against it, we will be sorely disappointed;
it will be to us a source of deep mortification as well as profound
regret. We will feel as though we are deserted in the house of our
friends. But I have no fears whatever in this respect. You have stood by
the colored people of this country when it was more unpopular to do so
than it is to pass this bill. You have fulfilled every promise thus far,
and I have no reason to believe that you will not fulfill this one. Then
give us this bill. The white man's government Negro-hating democracy
will, in my judgment, soon pass out of existence. The progressive spirit
of the American people will not much longer tolerate the existence of an
organization that lives upon the passions and prejudices of the hour.

I appeal to all the members of the House--Republicans and Democrats,
conservatives and liberals--to join with us in the passage of this bill,
which has its object the protection of human rights. And when every man,
woman, and child can feel and know that his, her, and their rights are
fully protected by the strong arm of a generous and grateful Republic,
then we can all truthfully say that this beautiful land of ours, over
which the "Star-Spangled Banner" so triumphantly waves, is, in truth and
in fact, the "land of the free and the home of the brave."


_The following public tribute was paid to his father by the younger
Dumas on the occasion of taking his seat in the French Academy (February
11, 1875)._

[Note 10: From "The Life of A. Dumas," by Arthur E. Davidson, (p.

"The fact," said he, "that so many men superior to me have had to knock
many times at your door before it was opened to them would fill me with
pride, did I not know the real reason of your sympathy. In order to
reach my place among you, gentlemen, I have employed magical spells, I
have used witchcraft. Standing on my own merits alone I should not have
dared to face your judgment, but I knew that a good genius--that is the
right word--was fighting on my behalf, and that you were determined to
offer no defense. I have sheltered myself under a name which you would
have wished long ago to honor in itself, and which you are now able to
honor only in me. Believe me, gentlemen, it is with the greatest modesty
that I come to-day to accept a reward which has been so easily granted
to me only because it was reserved for another. I cannot--I may
not--receive it except in trust; allow me then, at once and publicly, to
make restitution of it to the man who, unhappily, can no longer receive
it himself. Thus you will be granting me the highest honor which I can
covet, and the only one _to which_ I have any real right."



[Note 11: Philadelphia, Wednesday, April 14, 1875.]

_Ladies and Gentlemen:_

The history of this Association, owing to its objects and achievements,
sweep in an interest that is not confined to any class: an interest that
is not confined to any people, and whose scope and consequences cannot
be foretold by human inspiration. It affects the emancipation of a whole
race; and in that it touches the progress and character of all who are
brought in contact with that race, the forms of government over the
world and the world's progress in all departments. There was a recent
time in American history when no man, in all its length and breadth,
could read the Declaration of Independence and say that he possessed all
of his civil and political liberties. Garrison could not speak in New
Orleans, nor could the silver-tongued Phillips address an audience south
of Mason and Dixon's line. Nor was it expedient for John C. Calhoun to
address his arguments in Independence Hall, or for Davis and Yulee and
Mason to propound theirs in Faneuil Hall. Speech was itself in thrall,
and bound to the section in which it found voice. When Garrison and
Phillips had been invited to speak in Cincinnati, they were counseled by
their friends not to do so. There was danger that the mobs of Covington
and Cincinnati would assassinate them publicly; and it is notorious that
the opposing arguments that reached Washington from the North and from
the South advanced no further in either direction. This impugned and
belied the very freedom declared in the Declaration and Constitution;
and made both the mockery of Europe. The contradiction is reconciled;
the taunt is silenced; speech is legally free and protected over all the
Union, and the Pennsylvania Abolition Society has done more than any
other agency--more than all other agencies combined--to vitalize the
Constitution and give being to the Declaration. This society fought for
the glowing assertion of all the centuries: That men are born free and
equal, and are endowed with inalienable right to life, liberty, and the
pursuit of happiness. It kept the contrast between the declaration and
its practise in a clear light. It repeated the assertion and reasserted
it. It argued the justice with the very facts and reasons that had been
presented to the Congress by whom the Declaration was framed.
Undisturbed by ridicule, unchecked by hostility, undaunted by
persecution, it has kept the law in the van of the fight; sustained it
by reserves of humane reason; by appeals to national strength and
welfare, and growth, and influence, and wealth; it disseminated the
truth in churches, at the polls, in lyceums, by the press; it was
unanswerable because its claim was founded in equity, and recognized in
religion, and had ineradicable place in the great muniment of national
being. It appealed to the individual conscience as well as to pride,
patriotism, piety, and interest, and it won, and now celebrates a
victory immeasurably greater than that of Yorktown or Waterloo or
Marathon. Those were the victories of nation over nation, or at the
utmost of a principle of limited application. We celebrate the
successful battle of the grandest principle in human organization; that
is confined to no race, limited to no country, cramped by no
restriction, but is as broad as the world, as applicable as humanity
itself and as enduring as time. The sentiment which elected Abraham
Lincoln was contained in an address delivered before the Pennsylvania
Abolition Society by Benjamin Rush, one of its earliest and most honored
members. It was: "Freedom and slavery cannot long exist together!"

Ladies and Gentlemen of the Abolition Society, those who see the
American citizens of African descent one hundred years hence will be
proud of them, and convinced that the great century struggle that won
their enfranchisement was worth infinitely more than it cost. We are now
leaving politics. We have gained through them the rights and
opportunities they conferred, that could be secured in no other way. We
are devoting ourselves to learning and industry; the attainment of
wealth and manufacture of character. We shall never leave our home.
There are but two facts to be recognized. We are here. The white race is
here. Both share the same rights; make and obey the same laws; struggle
for progress under the same conditions. The logical conclusion of our
birthright and of our proclaimed and perfected equality before the law
is that we shall remain, and remaining strive with equal advantages with
our white fellow citizens for our own good and the nation's welfare.



FRANCES ELLEN WATKINS HARPER _was a distinguished anti-slavery lecturer,
writer and poet, born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1825, of free parents.
After the close of the Civil War she went South and worked as a teacher
and lecturer, but later returned to Philadelphia, where she devoted her
time to lecturing and writing for the temperance cause, having charge,
for a number of years, of the W. C. T. U. work among Negroes. "Iola
Leroy, or the Shadows Uplifted," is her best-known work, besides which
she published a number of small books of verses._

[Note 12: Philadelphia, Wednesday, April 14, 1875.]

_Ladies and Gentlemen:_

The great problem to be solved by the American people, if I understand
it, is this: Whether or not there is strength enough in democracy,
virtue enough in our civilization, and power enough in our religion to
have mercy and deal justly with four millions of people but lately
translated from the old oligarchy of slavery to the new commonwealth of
freedom; and upon the right solution of this question depends in a large
measure the future strength, progress, and durability of our nation. The
most important question before us colored people is not simply what the
Democratic party may do against us or the Republican party do for us;
but what are we going to do for ourselves? What shall we do towards
developing our character, adding our quota to the civilization and
strength of the country, diversifying our industry, and practising those
lordly virtues that conquer success, and turn the world's dread laugh
into admiring recognition? The white race has yet work to do in making
practical the political axiom of equal rights, and the Christian idea of
human brotherhood; but while I lift mine eyes to the future I would not
ungratefully ignore the past. One hundred years ago and Africa was the
privileged hunting-ground of Europe and America, and the flag of
different nations hung a sign of death on the coasts of Congo and
Guinea, and for years unbroken silence had hung around the horrors of
the African slave-trade. Since then Great Britain and other nations have
wiped the bloody traffic from their hands, and shaken the gory
merchandise from their fingers, and the brand of piracy has been placed
upon the African slave-trade. Less than fifty years ago mob violence
belched out its wrath against the men who dared to arraign the
slaveholder before the bar of conscience and Christendom. Instead of
golden showers upon his head, he who garrisoned the front had a halter
around his neck. Since, if I may borrow the idea, the nation has caught
the old inspiration from his lips and written it in the new organic
world. Less than twenty-five years ago slavery clasped hands with King
Cotton, and said slavery fights and cotton conquers for American
slavery. Since then slavery is dead, the colored man has exchanged the
fetters on his wrist for the ballot in his hand. Freedom is king, and
Cotton a subject.

It may not seem to be a gracious thing to mingle complaint in a season
of general rejoicing. It may appear like the ancient Egyptians seating a
corpse at their festal board to avenge the Americans for their
shortcomings when so much has been accomplished. And yet with all the
victories and triumphs which freedom and justice have won in this
country, I do not believe there is another civilized nation under Heaven
where there are half so many people who have been brutally and
shamefully murdered, with or without impunity, as in this Republic
within the last ten years. And who cares? Where is the public opinion
that has scorched with red-hot indignation the cowardly murderers of
Vicksburg and Louisiana? Sheridan lifts up the vail from Southern
society, and behind it is the smell of blood, and our bones scattered at
the grave's mouth; murdered people; a White League with its "covenant of
death and agreement with hell." And who cares? What city pauses one hour
to drop a pitying tear over these mangled corpses, or has forged against
the perpetrator one thunderbolt of furious protest? But let there be a
supposed or real invasion of Southern rights by our soldiers, and our
great commercial emporium will rally its forces from the old man in his
classic shades, to clasp hands with "dead rabbits" and "plug-uglies" in
protesting against military interference. What we need to-day in the
onward march of humanity is a public sentiment in favor of common
justice and simple mercy. We have a civilization which has produced
grand and magnificent results, diffused knowledge, overthrown slavery,
made constant conquests over nature, and built up a wonderful material
prosperity. But two things are wanting in American civilization--a
keener and deeper, broader and tenderer sense of justice--a sense of
humanity, which shall crystallize into the life of the nation the
sentiment that justice, simple justice, is the right, not simply of the
strong and powerful, but of the weakest and feeblest of all God's
children; a deeper and broader humanity, which will teach men to look
upon their feeble brethren not as vermin to be crushed out, or beasts of
burden to be bridled and bitted, but as the children of the living God;
of that God whom we may earnestly hope is in perfect wisdom and in
perfect love working for the best good of all. Ethnologists may differ
about the origin of the human race. Huxley may search for it in
protoplasms, and Darwin send for the missing links, but there is one
thing of which we may rest assured,--that we all come from the living
God and that He is the common Father. The nation that has no reverence
for man is also lacking in reverence for God and needs to be instructed.

As fellow citizens, leaving out all humanitarian views--as a mere matter
of political economy it is better to have the colored race a living
force animated and strengthened by self-reliance and self-respect, than
a stagnant mass, degraded and self-condemned. Instead of the North
relaxing its efforts to diffuse education in the South, it behooves us
for our national life, to throw into the South all the healthful
reconstructing influences we can command. Our work in this country is
grandly constructive. Some races have come into this world and
overthrown and destroyed. But if it is glory to destroy, it is
happiness to save; and Oh! what a noble work there is before our nation!
Where is there a young man who would consent to lead an aimless life
when there are such glorious opportunities before him? Before our young
men is another battle--not a battle of flashing swords and clashing
steel--but a moral warfare, a battle against ignorance, poverty, and low
social condition. In physical warfare the keenest swords may be blunted
and the loudest batteries hushed; but in the great conflict of moral and
spiritual progress your weapons shall be brighter for their service and
better for their use. In fighting truly and nobly for others you win the
victory for yourselves.

Give power and significance to your own life, and in the great work of
upbuilding there is room for woman's work and woman's heart. Oh, that
our hearts were alive and our vision quickened, to see the grandeur of
the work that lies before. We have some culture among us, but I think
our culture lacks enthusiasm. We need a deep earnestness and a lofty
unselfishness to round out our lives. It is the inner life that develops
the outer, and if we are in earnest the precious things lie all around
our feet, and we need not waste our strength in striving after the dim
and unattainable. Women, in your golden youth; mother, binding around
your heart all the precious ties of life,--let no magnificence of
culture, or amplitude of fortune, or refinement of sensibilities, repel
you from helping the weaker and less favored. If you have ampler gifts,
hold them as larger opportunities with which you can benefit others. Oh,
it is better to feel that the weaker and feebler our race the closer we
will cling to them, than it is to isolate ourselves from them in
selfish, or careless unconcern, saying there is a lion without. Inviting
you to this work I do not promise you fair sailing and unclouded skies.
You may meet with coolness where you expect sympathy; disappointment
where you feel sure of success; isolation and loneliness instead of
heart-support and co-operation. But if your lives are based and built
upon these divine certitudes, which are the only enduring strength of
humanity, then whatever defeat and discomfiture may overshadow your
plans or frustrate your schemes, for a life that is in harmony with God
and sympathy for man there is no such word as fail. And in conclusion,
permit me to say, let no misfortunes crush you; no hostility of enemies
or failure of friends discourage you. Apparent failure may hold in its
rough shell the germs of a success that will blossom in time, and bear
fruit throughout eternity. What seemed to be a failure around the Cross
of Calvary and in the garden has been the grandest recorded success.



HENRY HIGHLAND GARNET, _who at the time of the delivery of this speech
was in charge of the Fifteenth Street Presbyterian Church in Washington,
D. C., was one of the foremost figures in the great anti-slavery
movement in New York. He was the first colored man to speak in the
National Capitol._

     Matthew xxiii-4. "For they bind heavy burdens, and grievous to be
     borne, and lay them on men's shoulders, but they themselves will
     not move them with one of their fingers."

[Note 13: Delivered in the Hall of the House of Representatives,
Washington, D. C., at the request of the Chaplain, Rev. William H.

In this chapter, of which my text is a sentence, the Lord Jesus
addressed his disciples, and the multitude that hung spell-bound upon
the words that fell from his lips. He admonished them to beware of the
religion of the Scribes and Pharisees, which was distinguished for great
professions, while it succeeded in urging them to do but a little, or
nothing that accorded with the law of righteousness.

In theory they were right; but their practices were inconsistent and
wrong. They were learned in the law of Moses, and in the traditions of
their fathers, but the principles of righteousness failed to affect
their hearts. They knew their duty but did it not. The demands which
they made upon others proved that they themselves knew what things men
ought to do. In condemning others they pronounced themselves guilty.
They demanded that others should be just, merciful, pure, peaceable, and
righteous. But they were unjust, impure, unmerciful--they hated and
wronged a portion of their fellowmen, and waged a continual war against
the government of God.

* * * * *

Such was their conduct in the Church and in the State. We have modern
Scribes and Pharisees, who are faithful to their prototypes of ancient

With sincere respect and reverence for the instruction, and the warning
given by our Lord, and in humble dependence upon him for his assistance,
I shall speak this morning of the Scribes and Pharisees of our times who
rule the State. In discharging this duty, I shall keep my eyes upon the
picture which is painted so faithfully and life-like by the hand of the

Allow me to describe them. They are intelligent and well-informed, and
can never say, either before an earthly tribunal or at the bar of God,
"We knew not of ourselves what was right." They are acquainted with the
principles of the law of nations. They are proficient in the knowledge
of Constitutional law. They are teachers of common law, and frame and
execute statute law. They acknowledge that there is a just and impartial
God, and are not altogether unacquainted with the law of Christian love
and kindness. They claim for themselves the broadest freedom. Boastfully
they tell us that they have received from the court of heaven the Magna
Charta of human rights that was handed down through the clouds, and
amid the lightnings of Sinai, and given again by the Son of God on the
Mount of Beatitudes, while the glory of the Father shone around him.
They tell us that from the Declaration of Independence and the
Constitution they have obtained a guaranty of their political freedom,
and from the Bible they derive their claim to all the blessings of
religious liberty. With just pride they tell us that they are descended
from the Pilgrims, who threw themselves upon the bosom of the
treacherous sea, and braved storms and tempests, that they might find in
a strange land, and among savages, free homes, where they might build
their altars that should blaze with acceptable sacrifice unto God. Yes!
they boast that their fathers heroically turned away from the precious
light of Eastern civilization, and taking their lamps with oil in their
vessels, joyfully went forth to illuminate this land, that then dwelt in
the darkness of the valley of the shadow of death. With hearts
strengthened by faith they spread out their standard to the winds of
heaven, near Plymouth rock; and whether it was stiffened in the sleet
and frosts of winter, or floated on the breeze of summer, it ever bore
the motto, "Freedom to worship God."

But others, their fellow-men, equal before the Almighty, and made by him
of the same blood, and glowing with immortality, they doom to life-long
servitude and chains. Yes, they stand in the most sacred places on
earth, and beneath the gaze of the piercing eye of Jehovah, the
universal Father of all men, and declare, "that the best possible
condition of the Negro is slavery."

In the name of the Triune God I denounce the sentiment as unrighteous
beyond measure, and the holy and the just of the whole earth say in
regard to it, Anathema-maranatha.

What is slavery? Too well do I know what it is. I will present to you a
bird's-eye view of it; and it shall be no fancy picture, but one that is
sketched by painful experience. I was born among the cherished
institutions of slavery. My earliest recollections of parents, friends,
and the home of my childhood are clouded with its wrongs. The first
sight that met my eyes was a Christian mother enslaved by professed
Christians, but, thank God, now a saint in heaven. The first sounds that
startled my ear, and sent a shudder through my soul, were the cracking
of the whip and the clanking of chains. These sad memories mar the
beauties of my native shores, and darken all the slave-land, which, but
for the reign of despotism, had been a paradise. But those shores are
fairer now. The mists have left my native valleys, and the clouds have
rolled away from the hills, and Maryland, the unhonored grave of my
fathers, is now the free home of their liberated and happier children.

Let us view this demon, which the people have worshiped as a God. Come
forth, thou grim monster, that thou mayest be critically examined! There
he stands. Behold him, one and all. Its work is to chattelize man; to
hold property in human beings. Great God! I would as soon attempt to
enslave Gabriel or Michael as to enslave a man made in the image of God,
and for whom Christ died. Slavery is snatching man from the high place
to which he was lifted by the hand of God, and dragging him down to the
level of the brute creation, where he is made to be the companion of the
horse and the fellow of the ox.

It tears the crown of glory from his head, and as far as possible
obliterates the image of God that is in him. Slavery preys upon man, and
man only. A brute cannot be made a slave. Why? Because a brute has not
reason, faith, nor an undying spirit, nor conscience. It does not look
forward to the future with joy or fear, nor reflect upon the past with
satisfaction or regret. But who in this vast assembly, who in all this
broad land, will say that the poorest and most unhappy brother in chains
and servitude has not every one of these high endowments? Who denies it?
Is there one? If so, let him speak. There is not one; no, not one.

But slavery attempts to make a man a brute. It treats him as a beast.
Its terrible work is not finished until the ruined victim of its lusts,
and pride, and avarice, and hatred, is reduced so low that with tearful
eyes and feeble voice he faintly cries, "I am happy and contented--I
love this condition."

    "Proud Nimrod first the bloody chase began,
    A mighty hunter he; his prey was man."

The caged lion may cease to roar, and try no longer the strength of the
bars of his prison, and lie with his head between his mighty paws and
snuff the polluted air as though he heeded not. But is he contented?
Does he not instinctively long for the freedom of the forest and the
plain? Yes, he is a lion still. Our poor and forlorn brother whom thou
hast labelled "slave," is also a man. He may be unfortunate, weak,
helpless, and despised, and hated, nevertheless he is a man. His God and
thine has stamped on his forehead his title to his inalienable rights in
characters that can be read by every intelligent being. Pitiless storms
of outrage may have beaten upon his defenseless head and he may have
descended through ages of oppression, yet he is a man. God made him
such, and his brother cannot unmake him. Woe, woe to him who attempts to
commit the accursed crime.

Slavery commenced its dreadful work in kidnapping unoffending men in a
foreign and distant land, and in piracy on the seas. The plunderers were
not the followers of Mahomet, nor the devotees of Hindooism, nor
benighted pagans, nor idolaters, but people called Christians, and thus
the ruthless traders in the souls and bodies of men fastened upon
Christianity a crime and stain at the sight of which it shudders and

It is guilty of the most heinous iniquities ever perpetrated upon
helpless women and innocent children. Go to the shores of the land of my
forefathers, poor bleeding Africa, which, although she has been
bereaved, and robbed for centuries, is nevertheless beloved by all her
worthy descendants wherever dispersed. Behold a single scene that there
meets your eyes. Turn not away neither from shame, pity, nor
indifference, but look and see the beginning of this cherished and
petted institution. Behold a hundred youthful mothers seated on the
ground, dropping their tears upon the hot sands, and filling the air
with their lamentations.

Why do they weep? Ah, Lord God, thou knowest! Their babes have been
torn from their bosoms and cast upon the plains to die of hunger, or to
be devoured by hyenas or jackals. The little innocents would die on the
"Middle Passage," or suffocate between the decks of the floating
slave-pen, freighted and packed with unparalleled human woe, and the
slavers in mercy have cast them out to perish on their native shores.
Such is the beginning, and no less wicked is the end of that system
which Scribes and Pharisees in the Church and the State pronounce to be
just, humane, benevolent and Christian. If such are the deeds of mercy
wrought by angels, then tell me what works of iniquity there remain for
devils to do?

* * * * *

It is the highly concentrated essence of all conceivable wickedness.
Theft, robbery, pollution, unbridled passion, incest, cruelty,
cold-blooded murder, blasphemy, and defiance of the laws of God. It
teaches children to disregard parental authority. It tears down the
marriage altar, and tramples its sacred ashes under its feet. It creates
and nourishes polygamy. It feeds and pampers its hateful handmaid,

It has divided our national councils. It has engendered deadly strife
between brethren. It has wasted the treasure of the Commonwealth, and
the lives of thousands of brave men, and driven troops of helpless women
and children into yawning tombs. It has caused the bloodiest civil war
recorded in the book of time. It has shorn this nation of its locks of
strength that was rising as a young lion in the Western world. It has
offered us as a sacrifice to the jealousy and cupidity of tyrants,
despots, and adventurers of foreign countries. It has opened a door
through which a usurper, a perjured, but a powerful prince, might
stealthily enter and build an empire on the golden borders of our
southwestern frontier, and which is but a stepping-stone to further and
unlimited conquests on this continent. It has desolated the fairest
portions of our land, "until the wolf long since driven back by the
march of civilization returns after the lapse of a hundred years and
howls amidst its ruins."

It seals up the Bible, and mutilates its sacred truths, and flies into
the face of the Almighty, and impiously asks, "Who art thou that I
should obey thee?" Such are the outlines of this fearful national sin;
and yet the condition to which it reduces man, it is affirmed, is the
best that can possibly be devised for him.

When inconsistencies similar in character, and no more glaring, passed
beneath the eye of the Son of God, no wonder he broke forth in language
of vehement denunciation. Ye Scribes, Pharisees, and hypocrites! Ye
blind guides! Ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he
is made ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. Ye
are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful without,
but within are full of dead men's bones, and all uncleanness!

Let us here take up the golden rule, and adopt the self-application mode
of reasoning to those who hold these erroneous views. Come, gird up thy
loins and answer like a man, if thou canst. Is slavery, as it is seen in
its origin, continuance, and end the best possible condition for thee?
Oh, no! Wilt thou bear that burden on thy shoulders, which thou
wouldest lay upon thy fellow-man? No. Wilt thou bear a part of it, or
remove a little of its weight with one of thy fingers? The sharp and
indignant answer is no, no! Then how, and when, and where, shall we
apply to thee the golden rule, which says, "Therefore all things that ye
would that others should do to you, do ye even so unto them, for this is
the law and the prophets."

Let us have the testimony of the wise and great of ancient and modern

    "Sages who wrote and warriors who bled."

Plato declared that "Slavery is a system of complete injustice."

Socrates wrote that "Slavery is a system of outrage and robbery."

Cyrus said, "To fight in order not to be a slave is noble."

If Cyrus had lived in our land a few years ago he would have been
arrested for using incendiary language, and for inciting servile
insurrection, and the royal fanatic would have been hanged on a gallows
higher than Haman. But every man is fanatical when his soul is warmed by
the generous fires of liberty. Is it then truly noble to fight in order
not to be a slave? The Chief Magistrate of the nation, and our rulers,
and all truly patriotic men think so; and so think legions of black men,
who for a season were scorned and rejected, but who came quickly and
cheerfully when they were at last invited, bearing a heavy burden of
proscriptions upon their shoulders, and having faith in God, and in
their generous fellow-countrymen, they went forth to fight a double
battle. The foes of their country were before them, while the enemies of
freedom and of their race surrounded them.

Augustine, Constantine, Ignatius, Polycarp, Maximus, and the most
illustrious lights of the ancient church denounced the sin of

Thomas Jefferson said at a period of his life, when his judgment was
matured, and his experience was ripe, "There is preparing, I hope, under
the auspices of heaven, a way for a total emancipation."

The sainted Washington said, near the close of his moral career, and
when the light of eternity was beaming upon him, "It is among my first
wishes to see some plan adopted by which slavery in this country shall
be abolished by law. I know of but one way by which this can be done,
and that is by legislative action, and so far as my vote can go, it
shall not be wanting."

The other day, when the light of Liberty streamed through this marble
pile, and the hearts of the noble band of patriotic statesmen leaped for
joy, and this our national capitol shook from foundation to dome with
the shouts of a ransomed people, then methinks the spirits of
Washington, Jefferson, the Jays, the Adamses, and Franklin, and
Lafayette, and Giddings, and Lovejoy, and those of all the mighty, and
glorious dead, remembered by history, because they were faithful to
truth, justice, and liberty, were hovering over the august assembly.
Though unseen by mortal eyes, doubtless they joined the angelic choir,
and said, Amen.

Pope Leo X. testifies, "That not only does the Christian religion, but
nature herself, cry out against a state of slavery."

Patrick Henry said, "We should transmit to posterity our abhorrence of
slavery." So also thought the Thirty-Eighth Congress.

Lafayette proclaimed these words: "Slavery is a dark spot on the face of
the nation." God be praised, that stain will soon be wiped out.

Jonathan Edwards declared "that to hold a man in slavery is to be every
day guilty of robbery, or of man stealing."

Rev. Dr. William Ellery Channing, in a Letter on the Annexation of Texas
in 1837, writes as follows: "The evil of slavery speaks for itself. To
state is to condemn the institution. The choice which every freeman
makes of death for his child and for every thing he loves in preference
to slavery shows what it is. * * * "Every principle of our government
and religion condemns slavery. The spirit of our age condemns it. The
decree of the civilized world has gone out against it."

* * * * *

Moses, the greatest of all lawgivers and legislators, said, while his
face was yet radiant with the light of Sinai: "Whoso stealeth a man, and
selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be put to
death." The destroying angel has gone forth through this land to execute
the fearful penalties of God's broken law.

The representatives of the nation have bowed with reverence to the
Divine edict, and laid the axe at the root of the tree, and thus saved
succeeding generations from the guilt of oppression, and from the wrath
of God.

Statesmen, jurists, and philosophers, most renowned for learning, and
most profound in every department of science and literature, have
testified against slavery; while oratory has brought its costliest,
golden treasures, and laid them on the altar of God and of freedom, it
has aimed its fiercest lightning and loudest thunder at the strongholds
of tyranny, injustice, and despotism.

From the days of Balak to those of Isaiah and Jeremiah, up to the times
of Paul, and through every age of the Christian Church, the sons of
thunder have denounced the abominable thing. The heroes who stood in the
shining ranks of the hosts of the friends of human progress, from Cicero
to Chatham, and Burke, Sharp, Wilberforce, and Thomas Clarkson, and
Curran, assaulted the citadel of despotism. The orators and statesmen of
our own land, whether they belong to the past, or to the present age,
will live and shine in the annals of history, in proportion as they have
dedicated their genius and talents to the defence of Justice and man's
God-given rights.

All the poets who live in sacred and profane history have charmed the
world with their most enchanting strains, when they have tuned their
lyres to the praise of Liberty. When the muses can no longer decorate
her altars with their garlands, then they hang their harps upon the
willows and weep.

From Moses to Terence and Homer, from thence to Milton and Cowper,
Thomson and Thomas Campbell, and on to the days of our own bards, our
Bryants, Longfellows, Whittiers, Morrises, and Bokers, all have
presented their best gifts to the interests and rights of man.

Every good principle, and every great and noble power, have been made
the subjects of the inspired verse, and the songs of poets. But who of
them has attempted to immortalize slavery? You will search in vain the
annals of the world to find an instance. Should any attempt the
sacrilegious work, his genius would fall to the earth as if smitten by
the lightning of heaven. Should he lift his hand to write a line in its
praise, or defence, the ink would freeze on the point of his pen.

Could we array in one line, representatives of all the families of men,
beginning with those lowest in the scale of being, and should we put to
them the question, Is it right and desirable that you should be reduced
to the condition of slaves, to be registered with chattels, to have your
persons, and your lives, and the products of your labor, subjected to
the will and the interests of others? Is it right and just that the
persons of your wives and children should be at the disposal of others,
and be yielded to them for the purpose of pampering their lusts and
greed of gain? Is it right to lay heavy burdens on other men's shoulders
which you would not remove with one of your fingers? From the rude
savage and barbarian the negative response would come, increasing in
power and significance as it rolled up the line. And when those should
reply, whose minds and hearts are illuminated with the highest
civilization and with the spirit of Christianity, the answer deep-toned
and prolonged would thunder forth, no, no!

With all the moral attributes of God on our side, cheered as we are by
the voices of universal human nature,--in view of the best interests of
the present and future generations--animated with the noble desire to
furnish the nations of the earth with a worthy example, let the verdict
of death which has been brought in against slavery, by the Thirty-Eighth
Congress, be affirmed and executed by the people. Let the gigantic
monster perish. Yes, perish now, and perish forever!

It is often asked when and where will the demands of the reformers of
this and coming ages end? It is a fair question, and I will answer.

When all unjust and heavy burdens shall be removed from every man in the
land. When all invidious and proscriptive distinctions shall be blotted
out from our laws, whether they be constitutional, statute, or municipal
laws. When emancipation shall be followed by enfranchisement, and all
men holding allegiance to the government shall enjoy every right of
American citizenship. When our brave and gallant soldiers shall have
justice done unto them. When the men who endure the sufferings and
perils of the battle-field in the defence of their country, and in order
to keep our rulers in their places, shall enjoy the well-earned
privilege of voting for them. When in the army and navy, and in every
legitimate and honorable occupation, promotion shall smile upon merit
without the slightest regard to the complexion of a man's face. When
there shall be no more class-legislation, and no more trouble
concerning the black man and his rights, than there is in regard to
other American citizens. When, in every respect, he shall be equal
before the law, and shall be left to make his own way in the social
walks of life.

We ask, and only ask, that when our poor frail barks are launched on
life's ocean--

    "Bound on a voyage of awful length
      And dangers little known,"

that, in common with others, we may be furnished with rudder, helm, and
sails, and charts, and compass. Give us good pilots to conduct us to the
open seas; lift no false lights along the dangerous coasts, and if it
shall please God to send us propitious winds, or fearful gales, we shall
survive or perish as our energies or neglect shall determine. We ask no
special favors, but we plead for justice. While we scorn unmanly
dependence; in the name of God, the universal Father, we demand the
right to live, and labor, and to enjoy the fruits of our toil. The good
work which God has assigned for the ages to come, will be finished, when
our national literature shall be so purified as to reflect a faithful
and a just light upon the character and social habits of our race, and
the brush, and pencil, and chisel, and lyre of art, shall refuse to lend
their aid to scoff at the afflictions of the poor, or to caricature, or
ridicule a long-suffering people. When caste and prejudice in Christian
churches shall be utterly destroyed, and shall be regarded as totally
unworthy of Christians, and at variance with the principles of the
gospel. When the blessings of the Christian religion, and of sound,
religious education, shall be freely offered to all, then, and not till
then, shall the effectual labors of God's people and God's instruments

If slavery has been destroyed merely from _necessity_, let every class
be enfranchised at the dictation of _justice_. Then we shall have a
Constitution that shall be reverenced by all: rulers who shall be
honored, and revered, and a Union that shall be sincerely loved by a
brave and patriotic people, and which can never be severed.

Great sacrifices have been made by the people; yet, greater still are
demanded ere atonement can be made for our national sins. Eternal
justice holds heavy mortgages against us, and will require the payment
of the last farthing. We have involved ourselves in the sin of
unrighteous gain, stimulated by luxury, and pride, and the love of power
and oppression; and prosperity and peace can be purchased only by blood,
and with tears of repentance. We have paid some of the fearful
installments, but there are other heavy obligations to be met.

The great day of the nation's judgment has come, and who shall be able
to stand? Even we, whose ancestors have suffered the afflictions which
are inseparable from a condition of slavery, for the period of two
centuries and a half, now pity our land and weep with those who weep.

Upon the total and complete destruction of this accursed sin depends the
safety and perpetuity of our Republic and its excellent institutions.

Let slavery die. It has had a long and fair trial. God himself has
pleaded against it. The enlightened nations of the earth have condemned
it. Its death warrant is signed by God and man. Do not commute its
sentence. Give it no respite, but let it be ignominiously executed.

Honorable Senators and Representatives! Illustrious rulers of this great
nation! I cannot refrain this day from invoking upon you, in God's name,
the blessings of millions who were ready to perish, but to whom a new
and better life has been opened by your humanity, justice, and
patriotism. You have said, "Let the Constitution of the country be so
amended that slavery and involuntary servitude shall no longer exist in
the United States, except in punishment for crime." Surely, an act so
sublime could not escape Divine notice; and doubtless the deed has been
recorded in the archives of heaven. Volumes may be appropriated to your
praise and renown in the history of the world. Genius and art may
perpetuate the glorious act on canvass and in marble, but certain and
more lasting monuments in commemoration of your decision are already
erected in the hearts and memories of a grateful people.

The nation has begun its exodus from worse than Egyptian bondage; and I
beseech you that you say to the people, "that they go forward." With the
assurance of God's favor in all things done in obedience to his
righteous will, and guided by day and by night by the pillars of cloud
and fire, let us not pause until we have reached the other and safe side
of the stormy and crimson sea. Let freemen and patriots mete out
complete and equal justice to all men, and thus prove to mankind the
superiority of our Democratic, Republican Government.

Favored men, and honored of God as his instruments, speedily finish the
work which he has given you to do. Emancipate, enfranchise, educate, and
give the blessings of the gospel to every American citizen.

Then before us a path of prosperity will open, and upon us will descend
the mercies and favors of God. Then shall the people of other countries,
who are standing tip-toe on the shores of every ocean, earnestly looking
to see the end of this amazing conflict, behold a Republic that is
sufficiently strong to outlive the ruin and desolations of civil war,
having the magnanimity to do justice to the poorest and weakest of her
citizens. Thus shall we give to the world the form of a model Republic,
founded on the principles of justice, and humanity, and Christianity, in
which the burdens of war and the blessings of peace are equally borne
and enjoyed by all.



GEORGE L. RUFFIN _(1834-1885) the first Negro judge to be appointed in
Massachusetts, graduated in Law from Harvard, 1869. He served in the
legislature of Massachusetts two terms, and in the Boston Council two

[Note 14: Extracts from an address delivered before the Banneker
Literary Club, of Boston, Mass., on the occasion of the commemoration of
the "Boston Massacre," March 7, 1876.]

The fifth of March, 1770, had been a cold day, and a slight fall of snow
had covered the ground, but at nine o'clock at night it was clear and
cold, not a cloud to be seen in the sky, and the moon was shining
brightly. A British guard was patrolling the streets with clanking
swords and overbearing swagger. A sentry was stationed in Dock Square. A
party of young men, four in number, came out of a house in Cornhill. One
of the soldiers was whirling his sword about his head, striking fire
with it; the sentry challenged one of the four young men; there was no
good blood between them, and it took but little to start a disturbance.
An apprentice boy cried out to one of the guards, "You haven't paid my
master for dressing your hair!" A soldier said, "Where are the d---- d
Yankee boogers, I'll kill them!" A boy's head was split, there was more
quarrelling between the young men and the guard, great noise and
confusion; a vast concourse of excited people soon collected; cries of
"Kill them!" "Drive them out!" "They have no business here!" were
heard; some citizens were knocked down, as also were some soldiers.
Generally speaking, the soldiers got the worst of it; they were
reinforced, but steadily the infuriated citizens drove them back until
they were forced to take refuge in the Custom-House, upon the steps of
which they were pelted with snowballs and pieces of ice.

By this time the whole town was aroused; exaggerated accounts of the
event in Dock Square flew like wild-fire all over the settlement; the
people turned out _en masse_ in the streets and, to add to the general
din, the bells of the town were rung. The regiment which held the town
at that time was the 29th. Captain Preston seemed to have been in
command. He was sent for, went to the Custom-House, learned what had
occurred, and at once put troops in motion. On they came up King Street,
now State Street, with fixed bayonets, clearing everything before them
as they came. They had nearly reached the head of King Street, when they
met with opposition. A body of citizens had been formed nearby, and came
pushing violently through the street then called Cornhill, around into
King Street. They were armed only with clubs, sticks, and pieces of ice,
but on they came. Nothing daunted, they went up to the points of the
soldiers' bayonets. The long pent-up feeling of resentment against a
foreign soldiery was finding a vent. This was the time and the
opportunity to teach tyrants that freemen can at least strike back,
though for the time they strike in vain.

At the head of this body of citizens was a stalwart colored man, Crispus
Attucks. He was the leading spirit of their body, and their spokesman.
They pressed the British sorely on all sides, making the best use of
their rude arms, crying, "They dare not strike!" "Let us drive them
out!" The soldiers stood firm; the reach of their long bayonets
protected them from any serious injury for a while.

From time to time Attucks' voice could be heard urging his companions
on. Said he, "The way to get rid of these soldiers is to attack the main
guard; strike at the root! This is the nest!" At that time some one gave
the order to fire. Captain Preston said he did not; at any rate the
order was given. The soldiers fired. It was a death dealing volley. Of
the citizens three lay dead, two mortally wounded, and a number more or
less injured. Crispus Attucks, James Caldwell, and Samuel Gray were
killed outright. Attucks fell, his face to the foe, with two bullets in
his breast.

That night closed an eventful day. The first martyr-blood had reddened
the streets of Boston, and the commencement of the downfall of British
rule in America had set in. Said Daniel Webster, "From that moment we
may date the severance of the British Empire. The patriotic fires
kindled in the breasts of those earnest and true men, upon whose necks
the British yoke never sat easily, never were quenched after that
massacre, until the invader had been driven from the land and
independence had been achieved. The sight of the blood of their comrades
in King Street quickened their impulses, and hastened the day for a
more general outbreak, which we now call the Revolutionary War." This
was no mob, as some have been disposed to call it. They had not the low
and groveling spirit which usually incites mobs. This was resistance to
tyranny; this was striking for homes and firesides; this was the noblest
work which a patriot can ever perform. As well call Lexington a mob and
Bunker Hill a mob. I prefer to call this skirmish in King Street on the
5th of March, 1770, as Anson Burlingame called it, "The dawn of the

About that time the American people set out to found a government to be
dedicated to Freedom, which was to remain an asylum to the oppressed of
all lands forever. The central idea of this government was to be
Liberty, and a declaration was made by them to the world that all men
are created free and equal, and have the right to life, liberty, and the
pursuit of happiness. This was the government to be established in the
land which had been fought for and won in the sacrifice of the blood of
both black and white men. Did they do it? Did they intend to do it? Did
they believe in and intend to carry out this magnificent declaration of
principles--a declaration which startled the crowned heads of Europe and
sent a thrill of delight to the hearts of the lovers of liberty through
Christendom? No, they did not do it, neither did they intend to do it!
This manifesto of July 4, 1776, was a fraud and a deception; it was the
boldest falsification known to history; it was a sham and a lie. Instead
of establishing freedom, they built, fostered and perpetuated slavery;
instead of equality, they gave us inequality; instead of life, liberty,
and the pursuit of happiness, they gave us death, bondage, and misery;
instead of rearing on these shores a beautiful temple to Liberty, they
made a foul den for slavery; and this country, which should have been
the garden-spot of the world, covered with a prosperous and happy
population of freemen, was, under the guidance of traitors to Liberty,
made the prison-house of slaves, and betrayed in the house of her
friends. The Goddess of Liberty, for nearly one hundred years after the
establishment of our Government, sat in chains.

Attucks was in feelings, sympathies, and in all other respects,
essentially an American, and so were the other colored patriots of the
Revolution, and why shouldn't they be? They were born and bred here, and
knew no other country; as was true of their fathers. They had been here
as long as the Puritans. They came here the same year, 1620; in fact,
had been here a little longer, for while Plymouth Rock was only reached
in December of that year, the blacks were at Jamestown in the early
spring. In every difficulty with the mother country, the colored men
took sides with the colonists, and on every battle-field, when danger
was to be met, they were found shoulder to shoulder with the rest of the
Republicans, sharing the burden of war. At Lexington, where the farmers
hastily seized their muskets and gathered on the plain, and at the
bridge, to resist with the sacrifice of their lives the approach of the
British forces, Prince Estabrook, "Negro man" as the _Salem Gazette_ of
that day called him, rallied with his neighbors and comrades in arms,
and fell on the field, a wounded man, fighting the foe. He, like
Attucks, was both of and with the people. Their cause was his cause,
their home was his home, their fight was his fight. At Bunker Hill, a
few months later, we know there was a goodly number of colored men;
history has saved to us the names of some of them; how many there were
whose names were not recorded, of course, we cannot now tell. Andover
sent Tites Coburn, Alexander Ames, and Barzilai Low; Plymouth sent Cato
Howe, and Peter Salem immortalized his name by leveling the piece in
that battle which laid low Major Pitcairn. It is fair to presume that
other towns, like Andover, sent in the ranks of their volunteers colored
Americans. In the town of Raynham, within forty miles of Boston, there
is now a settlement of colored people who have been there for three or
four generations, the founder of which, Toby Gilmore, was an old
Revolutionary veteran who had served his country faithfully. Stoughton
Corner contributed Quack Matrick to the ranks of the Revolutionary
soldiers; Lancaster sent Job Lewis, East Bridgewater Prince Richards. So
did many other towns and States in this Commonwealth. Rhode Island
raised a regiment which did signal service at Red Bank in completely
routing the Hessian force under Colonel Donop, but it was not in
distinctively colored regiments or companies that colored men chiefly
fought in the Revolution; it was in the ranks of any and all regiments,
and by the side of their white companions in arms they were mainly to be

Attucks was born not a great way from Boston, at Farmingham, where his
brothers and sisters lived for a long time. At some time during his life
he was a slave; whether he was a slave at the time of the occurrence of
the events I am now relating is not so clear. One of the witnesses at
the trial of the soldiers testified that Attucks "belonged to New
Providence, and was here on his way to North Carolina." I am inclined to
think that at this time, in 1770, he was in the possession of his
liberty, having got it in the same manner that very many slaves since
obtained their freedom, by giving "leg-bail." Nearly twenty years before
he had run away from his master, as appears from an advertisement in the
_Boston Gazette_ of November 20, 1750. From this advertisement it would
appear that at the time of the engagement in King Street, Attucks was
about 47 years of age, a powerful man, and an ugly foe to encounter.
Twenty years of freedom, and moving from one part of the country to the
other as far away as North Carolina, must have enlarged his views and
given him the spirit of a free man. That he partook of the spirit which
animated those of his countrymen who would throw off the British yoke is
shown by the language used by him on this memorable occasion. "Let us
drive out the rebels; they have no business here!" said he, and they
re-echoed them. These words are full of meaning; they tell the story of
the Revolution.

One hundred and six years have passed away. King Street and Royal
Exchange Lane have lost their names. Cornhill has lost its identity. The
King's collectors no longer gather at the Custom-House, and epauletted
British officers no longer lounge away winter evenings in the
reading-room of Concert Hall; that once stately pile is no more. One
hundred and six years ago, George the Third was king, and these colonies
were British dependencies. Since that time marvelous changes have been
made in the world's history. Probably never before have so many and so
great changes taken place in the same space of time. Slavery then
existed in Massachusetts, as it did in the other colonies. It grew to
huge proportions, and dominated all other interests in the land, and for
years brought shame and disgrace upon us.

But our country now stands redeemed, disenthralled. The promises of 1776
are now realized. The immortal heroes of that age did not die in vain.
We have now, thanks to the Author of All Good, a free country, a
Republic of imperial proportions, a domain as extensive and a government
as powerful as that of the nations of antiquity, or of the present time,
and better than all over all this broad land there does not walk a
slave. In this centennial anniversary of the nation's existence it is
quite in order to suggest, and I do suggest that a monument be erected
to the memory of the first martyr of the Revolution--Crispus Attucks.



[Note 15: Oration delivered by Frederick Douglass on the occasion of
the unveiling of the Freedmen's Monument, in memory of Abraham Lincoln,
in Lincoln Park, Washington, D. C., April 14, 1876.]

_Friends and Fellow Citizens:_

I warmly congratulate you upon the highly interesting object which has
caused you to assemble in such numbers and spirit as you have to-day.
This occasion is, in some respects, remarkable. Wise and thoughtful men
of our race, who shall come after us and study the lesson of our history
in the United States; who shall survey the long and dreary spaces over
which we have traveled; who shall count the links in the great chain of
events by which we have reached our present position, will make a note
of this occasion; they will think of it and speak of it with a sense of
manly pride and complacency.

I congratulate you, also, upon the very favorable circumstances in which
we meet to-day. They are high, inspiring, and uncommon. They lend grace,
glory, and significance to the object for which we have met. Nowhere
else in this great country, with its uncounted towns and cities,
unlimited wealth, and immeasurable territory extending from sea to sea,
could conditions be found more favorable to the success of this occasion
than at this place.

We stand to-day at the national center to perform something like a
national act--an act which is to go into history; and we are here where
every pulsation of the national heart can be heard, felt, and
reciprocated. A thousand wires, fed with thought and winged with
lightning, put us in instantaneous communication with the loyal and true
men over this country.

Few facts could better illustrate the vast and wonderful change which
has taken place in our condition as a people than the fact of our
assembling here for the purpose we have to-day. Harmless, beautiful,
proper, and praiseworthy as this demonstration is, I cannot forget that
no such demonstration would have been tolerated here twenty years ago.
The spirit of slavery and barbarism, which still lingers to blight and
destroy in some dark and distant parts of our country, would have made
our assembling here the signal and excuse for opening upon us the
flood-gates of wrath and violence. That we are here in peace to-day is a
compliment and a credit to American civilization, and a prophecy of
still greater enlightenment and progress in the future. I refer to the
past, not in malice, but simply to place more distinctly in front the
gratifying and glorious change which has come both to our white fellow
citizens and ourselves, and to congratulate all upon the contrast
between now and then; the new dispensation of freedom with its thousand
blessings to both races, and the old dispensation of slavery with its
ten thousand evils to both races--white and black. In view, then, of the
past, the present, and the future, with the long and dark history of our
bondage behind us, and with liberty, progress, and enlightenment before
us, I again congratulate you upon this auspicious day and hour.

Friends and fellow citizens, the story of our presence here is soon and
easily told. We are here in the District of Columbia, here in the City
of Washington, the most luminous point of American territory, a city
recently transformed and made beautiful in its body and in its spirit;
we are here, in the place where the ablest and best men of the country
are sent to devise the policy, enact the laws, and shape the destiny of
the Republic; we are here, with the stately pillars and majestic dome of
the Capitol of the nation looking down upon us; we are here, with the
broad earth freshly adorned with the foliage and flowers of spring for
our church, and all races, colors, and conditions of men for our
congregation--in a word, we are here to express, as best we may, by
appropriate forms and ceremonies, our grateful sense of the vast, high,
and pre-eminent services rendered to ourselves, to our race, to our
country, and to the whole world by Abraham Lincoln.

The sentiment that brings us here to-day is one of the noblest that can
stir and thrill the human heart. It has crowned and made glorious the
high places of all civilized nations with the grandest and most enduring
works of art, designed to illustrate the characters and perpetuate the
memories of great public men. It is the sentiment, which from year to
year adorns with fragrant and beautiful flowers the graves of our loyal,
brave, and patriotic soldiers who fell in defense of the Union and
Liberty. It is the sentiment of gratitude and appreciation, which often,
in the presence of many who hear me, has filled yonder heights of
Arlington with the eloquence of eulogy and the sublime enthusiasm of
poetry and song; a sentiment which can never die while the Republic

For the first time in the history of our people, and in the history of
the whole American people, we join in this high worship, and march
conspicuously in the line of this time-honored custom. First things are
always interesting, and this is one of our first things. It is the first
time that, in this form and manner, we have sought to do honor to an
American great man, however deserving and illustrious. I commend the
fact to notice; let it be told in every part of the Republic; let men of
all parties and opinions hear it; let those who despise us, not less
than those who respect us, know that now and here, in the spirit of
liberty, loyalty, and gratitude, let it be known everywhere, and by
everybody who takes an interest in human progress and in the
amelioration of the condition of mankind, that, in the presence and with
the approval of the members of the American House of Representatives,
reflecting the general sentiment of the country; that in the presence of
that august body, the American Senate, representing the highest
intelligence and the calmest judgment in the country; in the presence of
the Supreme Court and Chief Justice of the United States, to whose
decisions we all patriotically bow; in the presence and under the
steady eye of the honored and trusted President of the United States,
with the members of his wise and patriotic Cabinet, we, the colored
people, newly emancipated and rejoicing in our blood-bought freedom,
near the close of the first century in the life of this Republic, have
now and here unveiled, set apart, and dedicated a monument of enduring
granite and bronze, in every line, feature, and figure of which the men
of this generation may read, and those of after-coming generations may
read, something of the exalted character and great works of Abraham
Lincoln, the first martyr President of the United States.

Fellow citizens, in what we have said and done today, and in what we may
say and do hereafter, we disclaim everything like arrogance and
assumption. We claim for ourselves no superior devotion to the
character, history, and memory of the illustrious name whose monument we
have here dedicated to-day. We fully comprehend the relations of Abraham
Lincoln, both to ourselves and to the white people of the United States.
Truth is proper and beautiful at all times and in all places, and it is
never more proper and beautiful in any case than when speaking of a
great public man whose example is likely to be commended for honor and
imitation long after his departure to the solemn shades--the silent
continents of eternity. It must be admitted, truth compels me to admit,
even here in the presence of the monument we have erected to his memory,
Abraham Lincoln was not, in the fullest sense of the word, either our
man or our model. In his interests, in his associations, in his habits
of thought, and in his prejudices, he was a white man.

He was pre-eminently the white man's President, entirely devoted to the
welfare of the white man. He was ready and willing at any time during
the first years of his administration to deny, postpone, and sacrifice
the rights of humanity in the colored people to promote the welfare of
the white people of this country. In all his education and feeling he
was an American of the Americans. He came into the Presidential chair
upon one principle alone, namely, opposition to the extension of
slavery. His arguments in furtherance of this policy had their motive
and mainspring in his patriotic devotion to the interests of his own
race. To protect, defend, and perpetuate slavery in the States where it
existed Abraham Lincoln was not less ready than any other President to
draw the sword of the nation. He was ready to execute all the supposed
constitutional guarantees of the United States Constitution in favor of
the slave system anywhere inside of the slave States. He was willing to
pursue, re-capture, and send back the fugitive slave to his master, and
to suppress a slave rising for liberty, though his guilty master were
already in arms against the Government. The race to which we belong was
not the special object of his consideration. Knowing this, I concede to
you, my white fellow citizens, a pre-eminence in this worship at once
full and supreme. First, midst, and last, you and yours were the objects
of his deepest affection and his most earnest solicitude. You are the
children of Abraham Lincoln. We are at best, only his step-children;
children by adoption, children by force of circumstances and necessity.
To you it especially belongs to sound his praises, to preserve and
perpetuate his memory, to multiply his statues, to hang his pictures
high upon your walls, and commend his example, for to you he was a great
and glorious friend and benefactor. Instead of supplanting you at this
altar, we would exhort you to build high his monuments; let them be of
the most costly material, of the most cunning workmanship; let their
forms be symmetrical, beautiful, and perfect; let their bases be upon
solid rocks, and their summits lean against the unchanging blue,
overhanging sky, and let them endure forever! But while, in the
abundance of your wealth, and in the fullness of your just and patriotic
devotion, you do all this, we entreat you to despise not the humble
offering we this day unveil to view; for while Abraham Lincoln saved for
you a country, he delivered us from a bondage, according to Jefferson,
one hour of which was worse than ages of the oppression your fathers
rose in rebellion to oppose.

Fellow citizens, ours is no new-born zeal and devotion--merely a thing
of the moment. The name of Abraham Lincoln was near and dear to our
hearts in the darkest and most perilous hours of the Republic. We were
no more ashamed of him when shrouded in clouds of darkness, of doubt and
defeat, than when we saw him crowned with victory, honor, and glory. Our
faith in him was often taxed and strained to the uttermost, but it never
failed. When he tarried long in the mountains; when he strangely told us
that we were the cause of the war; when he still more strangely told us
to leave the land in which we were born; when he refused to employ our
arms in defense of the Union; when, after accepting our services as
colored soldiers, he refused to retaliate our murder and torture as
colored prisoners; when he told us he would save the Union, if he could,
with slavery; when he revoked the Proclamation of Emancipation of
General Fremont; when he refused to remove the popular Commander of the
Army of the Potomac, in the days of its inaction and defeat, who was
more zealous in his efforts to protect slavery than to suppress
rebellion; when we saw all this and more, we were at times grieved,
stunned, and greatly bewildered, but our hearts believed, while they
ached and bled. Nor was this, at that time, a blind and unreasoning
superstition. Despite the mist and haze that surround him; despite the
tumult, the hurry, and confusion of the hour, we were able to take a
comprehensive view of Abraham Lincoln, and to make reasonable allowance
for the circumstances of his position. We saw him, measured him, and
estimated him; not by stray utterances to injudicious and tedious
delegations, who often tried his patience; not by isolated facts, torn
from their connection; not by partial and imperfect glimpses caught at
inopportune moments; but by a broad survey, in the light of the stern
logic of great events, and in view of that divinity which "shapes our
ends, rough hew them as we will," we came to the conclusion that the
hour and the man of our redemption had somehow met in the person of
Abraham Lincoln. It mattered little to us what language he might employ
on special occasions; it mattered little to us when we fully knew him,
whether he was swift or slow in his movements; it was enough for us that
Abraham Lincoln was at the head of a great movement, and was in living
and earnest sympathy with that movement, which, in the nature of things,
must go on until slavery should be utterly and forever abolished in the
United States.

When, therefore, it shall be asked what we have to do with the memory of
Abraham Lincoln, or what Abraham Lincoln had to do with us, the answer
is ready, full, and complete. Though he loved Cæsar less than Rome,
though the Union was more to him than our freedom or our future, under
his wise and beneficent rule, and by measures approved and vigorously
pressed by him, we saw that the handwriting of ages, in the form of
prejudice and proscription, was rapidly fading away from the face of our
whole country; under his rule, and in due time, about as soon, after
all, as the country could tolerate the strange spectacle, we saw our
brave sons and brothers laying off the rags of bondage, and being
clothed all over in the blue uniforms of the soldiers of the United
States; under his rule, we saw two hundred thousand of our dark and
dusky people responding to the call of Abraham Lincoln, and with muskets
on their shoulders, and eagles on their buttons, timing their high
footsteps to liberty and union under the national flag; under his rule,
we saw the independence of the black Republic of Haiti, the special
object of slave-holding aversion and horror, fully recognized, and her
minister, a colored gentleman, duly received here in the City of
Washington; under his rule, we saw the internal slave-trade, which so
long disgraced the nation, abolished, and slavery abolished in the
District of Columbia; under his rule, we saw, for the first time, the
law enforced against the foreign slave-trade, and the first slave-trader
hanged like any other pirate or murderer; under his rule, assisted by
the greatest captain of our age, and his inspiration, we saw the
Confederate States, based upon the idea that our race must be slaves,
and slaves forever, battered to pieces and scattered to the four winds;
under his rule, and in the fullness of time, we saw Abraham Lincoln,
after giving the slave-holders three months' grace in which to save
their hateful slave system, penning the immortal paper, which, though
special in its language, was general in its principles and effect,
making slavery forever impossible in the United States. Though we waited
long, we saw all this and more.

Can any colored man, or any white man friendly to the freedom of all
men, ever forget the night which followed the first day of January,
1863, when the world was to see if Abraham Lincoln would prove to be as
good as his word? I shall never forget that memorable night, when in a
distant city, I waited and watched at a public meeting, with three
thousand others not less anxious than myself, for the word of
deliverance which we have heard read to-day. Nor shall I ever forget the
outburst of joy and thanksgiving that rent the air when the lightning
brought to us the Emancipation Proclamation. In that happy hour we
forgot all delay, and forgot all tardiness, forgot that the President
had bribed the rebels to lay down their arms by a promise to withhold
the bolt that should smite the slave-system with destruction; and we
were thenceforward willing to allow the President all the latitude of
time, phraseology, and every honorable device that statesmanship might
require for the achievement of a great and beneficent measure of liberty
and progress.

Fellow citizens, there is little necessity on this occasion to speak at
length and critically of this great and good man, and of his high
mission in the world. That ground has been fully occupied and completely
covered both here and elsewhere. The whole field of fact and fancy has
been gleaned and garnered. Any man can say things that are true of
Abraham Lincoln, but no man can say anything that is new of Abraham
Lincoln. His personal traits and public acts are better known to the
American people than are those of any other man of his age. He was a
mystery to no man who saw and heard him. Though high in position, the
humblest could approach him and feel at home in his presence. Though
deep, he was transparent; though strong, he was gentle; though decided
and pronounced in his convictions, he was tolerant towards those who
differed from him, and patient under reproaches. Even those who only
knew him through his public utterances obtained a tolerably clear idea
of his character and personality. The image of the man went out with his
words, and those who read them knew him.

I have said that President Lincoln was a white man and shared the
prejudices common to his countrymen towards the colored race. Looking
back to his times and to the condition of his country, we are compelled
to admit that this unfriendly feeling on his part may safely be set down
as one element of his wonderful success in organizing the loyal American
people for the tremendous conflict before them, and bringing them safely
through that conflict. His great mission was to accomplish two things:
first, to save his country from dismemberment and ruin; and secondly, to
free his country from the great crime of slavery. To do one or the
other, or both, he must have the earnest sympathy and the powerful
co-operation of his loyal fellow countrymen. Without this primary and
essential condition to success his efforts must have been vain and
utterly fruitless. Had he put the abolition of slavery before the
salvation of the Union, he would have inevitably driven from him a
powerful class of American people and rendered resistance to rebellion
impossible. Viewed from the genuine abolition ground, Mr. Lincoln seemed
tardy, cold, dull, and indifferent; but measuring him by the sentiment
of his country, a sentiment he was bound as a statesman to consult, he
was swift, zealous, radical, and determined.

Though Mr. Lincoln shared the prejudices of his white countrymen against
the Negro, it is hardly necessary to say that in his heart of hearts he
loathed and hated slavery.[16] The man who could say "Fondly do we hope,
fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war shall soon pass
away, yet if God wills it continue till all the wealth piled by two
hundred years of bondage shall have been wasted, and each drop of blood
drawn by the lash shall have been paid for by one drawn by the sword,
the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether," gives all
needed proof of his feeling on the subject of slavery. He was willing,
while the South was loyal, that it should have its pound of flesh,
because he thought it was so nominated in the bond; but farther than
this, no earthly power could make him go.

[Note 16: "I am naturally anti-slavery. If slavery is not wrong,
nothing is wrong. I cannot remember when I did not so think and
feel."--Letter of Mr. Lincoln to Mr. Hodges of Kentucky, April 4, 1864.]

Fellow citizens, whatever else in the world may be partial, unjust, and
uncertain, time--time--is impartial, just, and certain in its action. In
the realm of mind, as well as in the realm of matter, it is a great
worker, and often works wonders. The honest and comprehensive statesman,
clearly discerning the needs of his country, and earnestly endeavoring
to do his whole duty, though covered and blistered with reproaches, may
safely leave his course to the silent judgment of time. Few great public
men have ever been the victims of fiercer denunciation than Abraham
Lincoln was during his administration. He was often wounded in the house
of his friends. Reproaches came thick and fast from within and from
without, and from opposite quarters. He was assailed by abolitionists;
he was assailed by slave-holders; he was assailed by the men who were
for peace at any price; he was assailed by those who were for a more
vigorous prosecution of the way; he was assailed for not making the war
an abolition war; and he was most bitterly assailed for making the war
an abolition war.

But now behold the change; the judgment of the present hour is, that
taking him for all in all, measuring the tremendous magnitude of the
work before him, considering the necessary means to ends, and surveying
the end from the beginning, infinite wisdom has seldom sent any man into
the world better fitted for his mission than Abraham Lincoln. His birth,
his training, and his natural endowments, both mental and physical, were
strongly in his favor. Born and reared among the lowly, a stranger to
wealth and luxury, compelled to grapple single-handed with the flintiest
hardships of life, from tender youth to sturdy manhood, he grew strong
in the manly and heroic qualities demanded by the great mission to which
he was called by the votes of his countrymen. The hard condition of his
early life, which would have depressed and broken down weaker men, only
gave greater life, vigor, and buoyancy to the heroic spirit of Abraham
Lincoln. He was ready for any kind and quality of work. What other young
men dreaded in the shape of toil, he took hold of with the utmost

    "A spade, a rake, a hoe,
      A pick-axe, or a bill,
    A hook to reap, a scythe to mow
      A flail, or what you will."

All day long he could split heavy rails in the woods, and half the night
long he could study his English Grammar by the uncertain flare and glare
of the light made by a pine-knot. He was at home on the land with his
axe, with his maul, with gluts, and his wedges; and he was equally at
home on water, with his oars, with his poles, with his planks, and with
his boat-hooks. And whether in his flat-boat on the Mississippi River,
or on the fireside of his frontier cabin, he was a man of work. A son of
toil himself, he was linked in brotherly sympathy with the sons of toil
in every loyal part of the Republic. This very fact gave him tremendous
power with the American people, and materially contributed not only to
selecting him to the Presidency, but in sustaining his administration of
the Government.

Upon his inauguration as President of the United States, an office, even
where assumed under the most favorable conditions, fitted to tax and
strain the largest abilities, Abraham Lincoln was met by a tremendous
crisis. He was called upon, not merely to administer the government, but
to decide in the face of terrible odds, the fate of the Republic.

A formidable rebellion rose in his path before him; the Union was
practically dissolved; his country was torn and rent asunder at the
center. Hostile armies were already organized against the Republic,
armed with the munitions of war which the Republic had provided for its
own defense. The tremendous question for him to decide was whether his
country should survive the crisis and flourish, or be dismembered and
perish. His predecessor in office had already decided the question in
favor of national dismemberment, by denying to it the right of
self-defense and self-preservation--a right which belongs to the meanest

Happily for the country, happily for you and me, the judgment of James
Buchanan, the patrician, was not the judgment of Abraham Lincoln, the
plebeian. He brought his strong common sense, sharpened in the school of
adversity, to bear upon the question. He did not hesitate, he did not
doubt, he did not falter but at once resolved, at whatever peril, at
whatever cost, the Union of the States should be preserved. A patriot
himself, his faith was strong and unwavering in the patriotism of his
countrymen. Timid men said, before Mr. Lincoln's inauguration, that we
had seen the last President of the United States. A voice in influential
quarters said, "Let the Union slide." Some said that a Union maintained
by the sword was worthless. Others said that a rebellion of 8,000,000,
cannot be suppressed; but in the midst of all this tumult and timidity,
and against all this, Abraham Lincoln was clear in his duty, and had an
oath in heaven. He calmly and bravely heard the voice of doubt and fear
all around him; but he had an oath in heaven, and there was not power
enough on earth to make this honest boatman, backwoodsman, and
broad-handed splitter of rails evade or violate that sacred oath. He had
not been schooled in the ethics of slavery; his plain life had favored
his love of truth. He had not been taught that treason and perjury were
the proofs of honor and honesty. His moral training was against his
saying one thing when he meant another. The trust which Abraham Lincoln
had in himself and in the people was surprising and grand, but it was
also enlightened and well-founded. He knew the American people better
than they knew themselves, and his truth was based upon this knowledge.

Fellow citizens, the fourteenth day of April, 1865, of which this is the
eleventh anniversary, is now, and will ever remain a memorable day in
the annals of this Republic. It was on the evening of this day, while a
fierce and sanguinary rebellion was in the last stages of its desolating
power; while its armies were broken and scattered before the invincible
armies of Grant and Sherman; while a great nation, torn and rent by war,
was already beginning to raise to the skies loud anthems of joy at the
dawn of peace, it was startled, amazed, and overwhelmed by the crowning
crime of slavery--the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. It was a new
crime, a pure act of malice. No purpose of the rebellion was to be
served by it. It was the simple gratification of a hell-black spirit of
revenge. But it has done good, after all. It has filled the country with
a deeper abhorrence of slavery and a deep love for the great liberator.

Had Abraham Lincoln died from any of the numerous ills to which flesh is
heir; had he reached that good old age of which his vigorous
constitution and his temperate habits gave promise; had he been
permitted to see the end of his great work; had the solemn curtain of
death come down but gradually--we should still have been smitten with a
heavy grief, and treasured his name lovingly. But dying, as he did die,
by the red hand of violence, killed, assassinated, taken off without
warning, not because of personal hate,--for no man who knew Abraham
Lincoln could hate him--but because of his fidelity to union and
liberty, he is doubly dear to us, and his memory will be precious

Fellow citizens, I end, as I began, with congratulations. We have done a
good work for our race to-day. In doing honor to the memory of our
friend and liberator, we have been doing highest honors to ourselves and
those who come after us; we have been fastening ourselves to a name and
fame imperishable and immortal; we have also been defending ourselves
from a blighting scandal. When now it shall be said that the colored man
is soulless, that he has no appreciation of benefits or benefactors;
when the foul reproach of ingratitude is hurled at us, and it is
attempted to scourge us beyond the range of human brotherhood, we may
calmly point to the monument we have this day erected to the memory of
Abraham Lincoln.



PINKNEY BENTON STEWART PINCHBACK _is one of the most interesting and
picturesque figures in the race. A staunch fighter in the Reconstruction
period in Louisiana, a delegate to many national Republican Conventions;
Ex-Lieutenant-Governor of Louisiana._

[Note 17: Delivered at Indianapolis, Indiana.]

_Mr. President and Fellow Citizens:_

The founders of the Republican party were aggressive men. They believed
in the Declaration of Independence and the great truths it contains; and
their purpose was to make these truths living realities. Possessing the
courage of their convictions and regarding slavery as the arch enemy of
the Republic--the greatest obstruction to its maintenance, advancement
and prosperity,--they proclaimed an eternal war against it and,
marshalling their forces under the banner of freedom and equality before
the law for all men, boldly and defiantly met the enemy at every point
and fairly routed it all along the line. Those men believed in and
relied upon the conscience of the people. To touch and arouse public
conscience and to convince it of the justice of their cause, they felt
was all that was necessary to enlist the people on their side.
Ridiculed, threatened, ostracised, and assaulted, they could not be
turned from their purpose, and their achievements constitute the
grandeur and glory of the Republican party. There were no apologists
for wrong-doers among those men, and there ought to be none in the
Republican party to-day. The South was the great disturbing element
then as it is now; and the causes which rendered it so are, in a
large measure, the same. The people were divided into three
classes--slave-holders, slaves, and poor whites, or "poor white trash"
as the latter were called by the colored people because of their utter
insignificance in that community. Its peculiar condition established in
the large land and slave-owning portion of the people a sort of
privileged class who claimed and exercised the right not only to rule
the South, but the nation; and for many years that class controlled
both. Gorged with wealth and drunk with power, considering themselves
born to command and govern, being undisputed rulers, almost by
inheritance in their States, the Southern politicians naturally became
aggressive, dictatorial, and determined to ruin the country and sever
the Union rather than consent to relinquish power, even though called
upon to do so by constituted methods. Hence it was that, when the people
of the great North and Northwest concluded to assert their rights and
choose a man from among themselves for President, they rebelled and
forced upon the country so far as they were concerned, the most
causeless and unnatural war recorded in history.

I shall not dwell upon the history of the war or attempt to detail its
horrors and sum up its cost. I leave that task to others. If the wounds
made by it have been healed, which I do not concede, far be it from my
purpose to re-open them. My sole reason for referring to the war at all
is to remind the Northern people of some of the agencies employed in its
successful prosecution. When it commenced, the principal labor element
of the South--the source of its production and wealth--was the colored
race. Four millions and a half of these unfortunate people were there,
slaves and property of the men who refused to submit to the will of the
people lawfully expressed through the ballot-box. They were the bone and
sinew of the Confederacy, tilling its fields and producing sustenance
for its armies, while many of the best men of the North were compelled
to abandon Northern fields to shoulder a musket in defense of the Union.
As a war measure and to deprive the South of such a great advantage,
your President, the immortal Lincoln, issued a proclamation in
September, 1862, in which he gave public notice that it was his purpose
to declare the emancipation of the slaves in the States wherein
insurrection existed on January 1, 1863, unless the offenders therein
lay down their arms. That notice, thank God, was disregarded, and the
proclamation of January 1, 1863, proclaiming universal emancipation
followed. Had the requirements of the first proclamation been observed
by the people to whom it was addressed who can doubt what would have
been the fate of the colored people in the South? It is reasonable to
assume, inasmuch as the war was waged to perpetuate the Union and not to
destroy slavery--that they would have remained in hopeless bondage. On
more than one occasion President Lincoln officially declared that he
would save the Union with slavery if he could, and not until it became
manifest that slavery was the mainstay of the Confederacy, and the
prosecution of the war to a successful close would be difficult without
its destruction, did he dare touch it. I do not think that President
Lincoln's hesitancy to act upon the question arose from sympathy with
the accursed institution, for I believe every pulsation of his heart was
honest and pure and that he was an ardent and devoted lover of universal
liberty; but he doubted whether his own people would approve of his
interference with it. Assured by the manner in which the people of the
North received his first proclamation that they appreciated the
necessity of destroying this great aid of the enemy, he went forward
bravely declaring that, "possibly for every drop of blood drawn by the
lash one might have to be drawn by the sword, but if so, as was said
over eighteen hundred years ago, the judgments of the Lord are just and
righteous altogether," and abolished human slavery from the land

That this great act was a Godsend and an immeasurable blessing to the
colored race, I admit, but I declare in the same breath that it was
dictated and performed more in the interest of the white people of the
North and to aid them in conquering the rebellion than from love of or a
disposition to help the Negro. The enfranchisement of the colored race
also sprang from the necessities of the nation. At the close of the war
the Southern States had to be rehabilitated with civil governments and
re-admitted into the Union. The men who had plunged the country into war
and had tried to destroy the Government were about to resume their civil
and political rights, and, through the election of Representatives and
Senators in Congress, regain influence and power in national councils.
Apprehending danger from the enormous power they would possess if
reinstated in absolute control of eleven States, some means had to be
devised to prevent this. A political element, loyal to the Union and the
flag, must be created; and again the ever faithful colored people were
brought into requisition, and without their asking for it, the elective
franchise was conferred upon them. There was no question about the
loyalty of these people, and the supposition that they would be a
valuable political force and form the basis of a loyal political party
in the South was both natural and just, and the wisdom of their
enfranchisement was demonstrated by the establishment of Republican
governments in several of the States, and the sending of mixed
delegations of Republican and Democratic members of Congress therefrom
so long as the laws conferring citizenship upon the colored man were

If the South is to remain politically Democratic as it is to-day, it is
not the fault of the colored people. Their fealty to the North and the
Republican party is without parallel in the world's history. In
Louisiana alone more than five thousand lives attest it. While in nearly
every other Southern State fully as many lie in premature graves,
martyrs to the cause. Considering themselves abandoned and left to the
choice of extermination or the relinquishment of the exercise of their
political rights, they have, in large districts in the South, wisely
preferred the latter. Kept in a constant condition of suspense and dread
by the peculiar methods of conducting canvasses and elections in that
section, who can blame them? It is my firm conviction that no other
people under God's sun, similarly situated, would have done half so
well. The fault is attributable to the vicious practise, which obtains
largely even here in the civilized North, of apologizing for and
condoning crimes committed for political purposes. Men love power
everywhere and Southern Democrats are no exception. On the contrary,
deeming themselves "born to command," as I have already remarked, and
knowing that there is no power to restrain or punish them for crimes
committed upon the poor and defenseless colored citizens, of course they
have pushed them to the wall. The inequality between the two races in
all that constitutes protective forces was such as to render that result
inevitable as soon as Federal protection was withdrawn, and I do not
hesitate to affirm that unless some means are devised to enforce respect
for the rights of the colored citizens of the South, their
enfranchisement will prove a curse instead of a benefit to the country.
Emancipated to cripple the South and enfranchised to strengthen the
North, the colored race was freed and its people made citizens in the
interest of the Republic. Its fundamental law declares them citizens,
and the Fifteenth Amendment expressly states that: "The right of
citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged
by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or
previous condition of servitude." The faith and honor of the Nation are
pledged to the rigid enforcement of the law in this, as in every other
respect, and the interests of the 40,000,000 white people in the
Republic demand it. If the law, both constitutional and statutory,
affecting the rights and privileges of the colored citizens can be
defiantly ignored and disobeyed in eleven States of the Union in a
matter of such grave import as this--a matter involving the very essence
of republican government, _i. e._, the right of the majority to
rule--who can tell where it will end and how long it will be before
elections in all of the States will be armed conflicts, to be decided by
the greatest prowess and dexterity in the use of the bowie knife,
pistol, shot-gun and rifle?

White men of the North, I tell you this practise of controlling
elections in the South by force and fraud is contagious! It spreads with
alarming rapidity and unless eradicated, will overtake and overwhelm you
as it has your friends in the South. It showed its horrid head in Maine,
and came very near wresting that State from a lawful majority. Employed
in the South first to drive Republicans from a few counties, it has
grown from "autumnal outbreaks" into an almost perpetual hurricane and,
gathering force as it goes, has violently seized State after State,
mastered the entire South, and is even now thundering at the gates of
the national Capital. Whether it shall capture it too, and spread its
blighting influence all over the land, is the question _you_ must
answer at the poles in this election.

It was the intention of the great men who founded this Republic that it
should be "A government of the people, for the people, and by the
people"; that its citizens, from the highest to the lowest, should enjoy
perfect equality before the law. To realize this idea the rule of the
majority, to be ascertained through the processes provided by law, was
wisely adopted, and the laws providing for and regulating elections are
respected and obeyed in the Northern, Eastern, and Western States. The
Democracy of the South alone seems privileged to set at defiance the
organic as well as every statutory enactment, national and State,
designed to secure this essential principle of free government. Those
men must be taught that such an exceptional and unhealthy condition of
things will not be tolerated; that the rights of citizens of every
nationality are sacred in the eyes of the law, and their right to vote
for whom they please and have their ballots honestly counted shall not
be denied or abridged with impunity; that the faith of the Nation is
pledged to the defense and maintenance of these obligations, and it will
keep its pledge at whatever cost may be found necessary.



ALEXANDER CRUMMELL, D.D., _an eminent Negro Episcopal clergyman; a
graduate of Oxford University, England; professor in a Liberian College;
rector of St. Luke's in Washington and founder of the Negro Academy._

[Note 18: Address before the "Freedman's Aid Society," Methodist
Episcopal Church, Ocean Grove, N. J., August 15th, 1883.]

It is an age clamorous everywhere for the dignities, the grand
prerogatives, and the glory of woman. There is not a country in Europe
where she has not risen somewhat above the degradation of centuries, and
pleaded successfully for a new position and a higher vocation. As the
result of this new reformation we see her, in our day, seated in the
lecture-rooms of ancient universities, rivaling her brothers in the
fields of literature, the grand creators of ethereal art, the
participants in noble civil franchises, the moving spirit in grand
reformations, and the guide, agent, or assistant in all the noblest
movements for the civilization and regeneration of man.

In these several lines of progress the American woman has run on in
advance of her sisters in every other quarter of the globe. The
advantage, she has received, the rights and prerogatives she has secured
for herself, are unequaled by any other class of women in the world. It
will not be thought amiss, then, that I come here to-day to present to
your consideration the one grand exception to this general superiority
of women, viz., _The black woman of the South_.

* * * * *

The rural or plantation population of the South was made up almost
entirely of people of pure Negro blood. And this brings out also the
other disastrous fact, namely, that this large black population has been
living from the time of their introduction into America, a period of
more than two hundred years, in a state of unlettered rudeness. The
Negro all this time has been an intellectual starveling. This has been
more especially the condition of the black woman of the South. Now and
then a black man has risen above the debased condition of his people.
Various causes would contribute to the advantage of the _men_: the
relation of servants to superior masters; attendance at courts with
them; their presence at political meetings; listening to table-talk
behind their chairs; traveling as valets; the privilege of books and
reading in great houses, and with indulgent masters--all these served to
lift up a black _man_ here and there to something like superiority. But
no such fortune fell to the lot of the plantation woman. The black woman
of the South was left perpetually in a state of hereditary darkness and

* * * * *

In her girlhood all the delicate tenderness of her sex was rudely
outraged. In the field, in the rude cabin, in the press-room, in the
factory, she was thrown into the companionship of coarse and ignorant
men. No chance was given her for delicate reserve or tender modesty.
From her girlhood she was the doomed victim of the grossest passions.
All the virtues of her sex were utterly ignored. If the instinct of
chastity asserted itself, then she had to fight like a tigress for the
ownership and possession of her own person; and, ofttimes, had to suffer
pains and lacerations for her virtuous self-assertion. When she reached
maturity all the tender instincts of her womanhood were ruthlessly
violated. At the age of marriage--always prematurely anticipated under
slavery--she was mated, as the stock of the plantation were mated, _not_
to be the companion of a loved and chosen husband, but to be the breeder
of human cattle, for the field or the auction-block. With that mate she
went out, morning after morning to toil, as a common field-hand. As it
was _his_, so likewise was it her lot to wield the heavy hoe, or to
follow the plow, or to gather in the crops. She was a "hewer of wood and
a drawer of water." She was a common field-hand. She had to keep her
place in the gang from morn till eve, under the burden of a heavy task,
or under the stimulus or the fear of a cruel lash. She was a picker of
cotton. She labored at the sugar-mill and in the tobacco-factory. When,
through weariness or sickness, she has fallen behind her allotted task,
there came, as punishment, the fearful stripes upon her shrinking,
lacerated flesh.

Her home life was of the most degrading nature. She lived in the rudest
huts, and partook of the coarsest food, and dressed in the scantiest
garb, and slept, in multitudinous cabins, upon the hardest boards.

Thus she continued a beast of burden down to the period of those
maternal anxieties which, in ordinary civilized life, give repose,
quiet, and care to expectant mothers. But, under the slave system, few
such relaxations were allowed. And so it came to pass that little
children were ushered into this world under conditions which many
cattle-raisers would not suffer for their flocks or herds. Thus she
became the mother of children. But even then there was for her no
suretyship of motherhood, or training, or control. Her own offspring
were _not_ her own. She and husband and children were all the property
of others. All these sacred ties were constantly snapped and cruelly
sundered. _This_ year she had one husband; and next year, through some
auction sale, she might be separated from him and mated to another.
There was no sanctity of family, no binding tie of marriage, none of the
fine felicities and the endearing affections of home. None of these
things was the lot of Southern black women. Instead thereof, a gross
barbarism which tended to blunt the tender sensibilities, to obliterate
feminine delicacy and womanly shame, came down as her heritage from
generation to generation; and it seems a miracle of providence and grace
that, notwithstanding these terrible circumstances, so much struggling
virtue lingered amid these rude cabins, that so much womanly worth and
sweetness abided in their bosoms, as slave-holders themselves have borne
witness to.

But some of you will ask: "Why bring up these sad memories of the past?
Why distress us with these dead and departed cruelties?" Alas, my
friends, these are not dead things. Remember that

    "The evil that men do lives after them."

The evil of gross and monstrous abominations, the evil of great organic
institutions crop out long after the departure of the institutions
themselves. If you go to Europe you will find not only the roots, but
likewise many of the deadly fruits of the old Feudal system still
surviving in several of its old states and kingdoms. So, too, with
slavery. The eighteen years of freedom have not obliterated all its
deadly marks from either the souls or bodies of the black woman. The
conditions of life, indeed, have been modified since emancipation; but
it still maintains that the black woman is the Pariah woman of this
land! We have, indeed, degraded women, immigrants, from foreign lands.
In their own countries some of them were so low in the social scale that
they were yoked with the cattle to plow the fields. They were rude,
unlettered, coarse, and benighted. But when they reach _this_ land there
comes an end to their degraded condition.

    "They touch our country and their shackles fall."

As soon as they become grafted into the stock of American life they
partake at once of all its large gifts and its noble resources.

Not so with the black woman of the South. Freed, legally she has been;
but the act of emancipation had no talismanic influence to reach to and
alter and transform her degrading social life.

When that proclamation was issued she might have heard the whispered
words in her every hut, "Open, Sesame;" but, so far as her humble
domicile and her degraded person were concerned, there was no invisible
but gracious Genii who, on the instant, could transmute the rudeness of
her hut into instant elegance, and change the crude surroundings of her
home into neatness, taste, and beauty.

The truth is, "Emancipation Day" found her a prostrate and degraded
being; and, although it has brought numerous advantages to her sons, it
has produced but the simplest changes in her social and domestic
condition. She is still the crude, rude, ignorant mother. Remote from
cities, the dweller still in the old plantation hut, neighboring to the
sulky, disaffected master class, who still think her freedom was a
personal robbery of themselves, none of the "fair humanities" have
visited her humble home. The light of knowledge has not fallen upon her
eyes. The fine domesticities which give the charm to family life, and
which, by the refinement and delicacy of womanhood, preserve the
civilization of nations, have not come to _her_. She has still the rude,
coarse labor of men. With her rude husband she still shares the hard
service of a field-hand. Her house, which shelters, perhaps, some six or
eight children, embraces but two rooms. Her furniture is of the rudest
kind. The clothing of the household is scant and of the coarsest
material, has ofttimes the garniture of rags; and for herself and
offspring is marked, not seldom, by the absence of both hats and shoes.
She has rarely been taught to sew, and the field labor of slavery times
has kept her ignorant of the habitudes of neatness, and the requirements
of order. Indeed, coarse food, coarse clothes, coarse living, coarse
manners, coarse companions, coarse surroundings, coarse neighbors, both
black and white, yea, every thing coarse, down to the coarse, ignorant,
senseless religion, which excites her sensibilities and starts her
passions, go to make up the life of the masses of black women in the
hamlets and villages of the rural South.

This is the state of black womanhood. Take the girlhood of this same
region, and it presents the same aspect, save that in large districts
the white man has not forgotten the olden times of slavery and with
indeed the deepest sentimental abhorrence of "amalgamation," still
thinks that the black girl is to be perpetually the victim of his lust!
In the larger towns and in cities our girls in common schools and
academies are receiving superior culture. Of the 15,000 colored school
teachers in the South, more than half are colored young women, educated
since emancipation. But even these girls, as well as their more ignorant
sisters in rude huts, are followed and tempted and insulted by the
ruffianly element of Southern society, who think that black _men_ have
no rights which white men should regard, and black _women_ no virtue
which white men should respect!

And now look at the _vastness_ of this degradation. If I had been
speaking of the population of a city, or a town, or even a village, the
tale would be a sad and melancholy one. But I have brought before you
the condition of millions of women. According to the census of 1880
there were, in the Southern States, 3,327,678 females of all ages of the
African race. Of these there were 674,365 girls between twelve and
twenty, 1,522,696 between twenty and eighty. "These figures," remarks an
observing friend of mine, "are startling!" And when you think that the
masses of these women live in the rural districts; that they grow up in
rudeness and ignorance; that their former masters are using few means to
break up their hereditary degradation, you can easily take in the
pitiful condition of this population, and forecast the inevitable future
to multitudes of females unless a mighty special effort is made for the
improvement of the black womanhood of the South.

I know the practical nature of the American mind, I know how the
question of values intrudes itself into even the domain of philanthropy;
and, hence, I shall not be astonished if the query suggests itself,
whether special interest in the black woman will bring any special
advantage to the American nation.

Let me dwell for a few moments upon this phase of the subject. Possibly
the view I am about suggesting has never before been presented to the
American mind. But, Negro as I am, I shall make no apology for venturing
the claim that the Negress is one of the most interesting of all the
classes of women on the globe. I am speaking of her, not as a perverted
and degraded creature, but in her natural state, with her native
instincts and peculiarities.

Let me repeat just here the words of a wise, observing, tender-hearted
philanthropist, whose name and worth and words have attained celebrity.
It is fully forty years ago since the celebrated Dr. Channing said: "We
are holding in bondage one of the best races of the human family. The
Negro is among the mildest, gentlest of men. He is singularly
susceptible of improvement from abroad.... His nature is affectionate,
easily touched, and hence he is more open to religious improvement than
the white man.... The African carries with him much more than _we_ the
genius of a meek, long-suffering, loving virtue."

I should feel ashamed to allow these words to fall from my lips if it
were not necessary to the lustration of the character of my black
sisters of the South. I do not stand here to-day to plead for the black
_man_. He is a man; and if he is weak he must go the wall. He is a man;
he must fight his own way, and if he is strong in mind and body, he can
take care of himself. But for the mothers, sisters, and daughters of my
race I have a right to speak. And when I think of their sad condition
down South; think, too, that since the day of emancipation hardly any
one has lifted up a voice in their behalf, I feel it a duty and a
privilege to set forth their praises and to extol their excellencies.
For, humble and benighted as she is, the black woman of the South is one
of the queens of womanhood. If there is any other woman on this earth
who in native aboriginal qualities is her superior, I know not where she
is to be found; for, I do say, that in tenderness of feeling, in genuine
native modesty, in large disinterestedness, in sweetness of disposition
and deep humility, in unselfish devotedness, and in warm, motherly
assiduities, the Negro woman is unsurpassed by any other woman on this

The testimony to this effect is almost universal--our enemies themselves
being witnesses. You know how widely and how continuously, for
generations, the Negro has been traduced, ridiculed, derided. Some of
you may remember the journals and the hostile criticisms of Coleridge
and Trollope and Burton, West Indian and African travelers. Very many of
you may remember the philosophical disquisitions of the ethnological
school of 1847, the contemptuous dissertations of Hunt and Gliddon. But
it is worthy of notice in all these cases that the sneer, the contempt,
the bitter gibe, have been invariably leveled against the black
_man_--never against the black woman! On the contrary, _she_ has almost
everywhere been extolled and eulogized. The black man was called a
stupid, thick-lipped, flat-nosed, long-heeled, empty-headed animal; the
link between the baboon and the human being, only fit to be a slave! But
everywhere, even in the domains of slavery, how tenderly has the Negress
been spoken of! She has been the nurse of childhood. To her all the
cares and heart-griefs of youth have been intrusted. Thousands and tens
of thousands in the West Indies and in our Southern States have risen up
and told the tale of her tenderness, of her gentleness, patience, and
affection. No other woman in the world has ever had such tributes to a
high moral nature, sweet, gentle love, and unchanged devotedness. And by
the memory of my own mother and dearest sisters I can declare it to be

Hear the tribute of Michelet: "The Negress, of all others, is the most
loving, the most generating; and this, not only because of her youthful
blood, but we must also admit, for the richness of her heart. She is
loving among the loving, good among the good. (Ask the travelers whom
she has so often saved.) Goodness is creative; it is fruitfulness; it is
the very benediction of a holy act. The fact that woman is so fruitful I
attribute to her treasures of tenderness, to that ocean of goodness
which permeates her heart.... Africa is a woman. Her races are
feminine.... In many of the black tribes of Central Africa the women
rule, and they are as intelligent as they are amiable and kind."

The reference in Michelet to the generosity of the African woman to
travelers brings to mind the incident in Mungo Park's travels, where the
African women fed, nourished, and saved him. The men had driven him
away. They would not even allow him to feed with the cattle; and so,
faint, weary, and despairing, he went to a remote hut and lay down on
the earth to die. One woman, touched with compassion, came to him,
brought him food and milk, and at once he revived. Then he tells us of
the solace and the assiduities of these gentle creatures for his
comfort. I give you his own words: "The rites of hospitality thus
performed toward a stranger in distress, my worthy benefactress,
pointing to the mat, and telling me that I might sleep there without
apprehension, called to the female part of her family which had stood
gazing on me all the while in fixed astonishment, to resume the task of
spinning cotton, in which they continued to employ themselves a great
part of the night. They lightened their labors by songs, one of which
was composed extempore, for I was myself the subject of it. It was sung
by one of the young women, the rest joining in a sort of chime. The air
was sweet and plaintive, and the words, literally translated, were
these: 'The winds roared and the rains fell; the poor white man, faint
and weary, came and sat under our tree. He has no mother to bring him
milk, no wife to grind his corn. Let us pity the white man, no mother
has he,'" etc.

Perhaps I may be pardoned the intrusion, just here, on my own personal
experience. During a residence of nigh twenty years in West Africa, I
saw the beauty and felt the charm of the native female character. I saw
the native woman in her _heathen_ state, and was delighted to see, in
numerous tribes, that extraordinary sweetness, gentleness, docility,
modesty, and especially those maternal solicitudes which make every
African boy both gallant and defender of his mother.

I saw her in her _civilized_ state, in Sierra Leone; saw precisely the
same characteristics, but heightened, dignified, refined, and sanctified
by the training of the schools, the refinements of civilization, and the
graces of Christian sentiment and feeling. Of all the memories of
foreign travel there are none more delightful than those of the families
and the female friends of Freetown.

A French traveler speaks with great admiration of the black ladies of
Hayti. "In the towns," he says, "I met all the charms of civilized life.
The graces of the ladies of Port-au-Prince will never be effaced from my

It was, without doubt, the instant discernment of these fine and tender
qualities which prompted the touching Sonnet of Wordsworth, written in
1802, on the occasion of the cruel exile of Negroes from France by the
French Government:

    "Driven from the soil of France, a female came
      From Calais with us, brilliant in array,
      A Negro woman like a lady gay,
    Yet downcast as a woman fearing blame;
      Meek, destitute, as seemed, of hope or aim
      She sat, from notice turning not away,
    But on all proffered intercourse did lay
      A weight of languid speech--or at the same
    Was silent, motionless in eyes and face.
      Meanwhile those eyes retained their tropic fire
    Which burning independent of the mind,
      Joined with the luster of her rich attire
    To mock the outcast--O ye heavens, be kind!
    And feel, thou earth, for this afflicted race!"

But I must remember that I am to speak not only of the neglects of the
black woman, but also of her needs. And the consideration of her needs
suggests the remedy which should be used for the uplifting of this woman
from a state of brutality and degradation.

* * * * *

Ladies and gentlemen, since the day of emancipation millions of dollars
have been given by the generous Christian people of the North for the
intellectual training of the black race in this land. Colleges and
universities have been built in the South, and hundreds of youth have
been gathered within their walls. The work of your own Church in this
regard has been magnificent and unrivaled, and the results which have
been attained have been grand and elevating to the entire Negro race in
America. The complement to all this generous and ennobling effort is the
elevation of the black woman. Up to this day and time your noble
philanthropy has touched, for the most part, the male population of the
South, given them superiority, and stimulated them to higher
aspirations. But a true civilization can only then be attained when the
life of woman is reached, her whole being permeated by noble ideas, her
fine taste enriched by culture, her tendencies to the beautiful
gratified and developed, her singular and delicate nature lifted up to
its full capacity; and then, when all these qualities are fully matured,
cultivated and sanctified, all their sacred influences shall circle
around ten thousand firesides, and the cabins of the humblest freedmen
shall become the homes of Christian refinement and of domestic elegance
through the influence and the charm of the uplifted and cultivated black
woman of the South!



_Founder of the National Association of Negro Women_

[Note 19: June, 1889.]

_Ladies of the Georgia Educational League:_

The telegram which you sent to Governor Northern to read to his
audience, informing the people of the North of your willingness to
undertake the moral training of the colored children of Georgia, merits
more than a passing notice. It is the first time, we believe, in the
history of the South where a body of representative Southern white women
have shown such interest in the moral welfare of the children of their
former slaves as to be willing to undertake to make them more worthy the
duties and responsibilities of citizenship. True, there have been
individual cases where courageous women have felt their moral
responsibility, and have nobly met it, but one of the saddest things
about the sad condition of affairs in the South has been the utter
indifference which Southern women, who were guarded with unheard of
fidelity during the war, have manifested to the mental and moral welfare
of the children of their faithful slaves, who, in the language of Henry
Grady, placed a black mass of loyalty between them and dishonor. This
was a rare opportunity for you to have shown your gratitude to your
slaves and your interest in their future welfare.

The children would have grown up in utter ignorance had not the North
sent thousands of her noblest daughters to the South on this mission of
heroic love and mercy; and it is worthy of remark of those fair
daughters of the North, that, often eating with Negroes, and in the
earlier days sleeping in their humble cabins, and always surrounded by
thousands of them, there is not one recorded instance where one has been
the victim of violence or insult. If because of the bitterness of your
feelings, of your deep poverty at the close of the war, conditions were
such that you could not do this work yourselves, you might have give a
Christian's welcome to the women who came a thousand miles to do the
work, that, in all gratitude and obligation belonged to you,--but
instead, these women were often persecuted, always they have been
ruthlessly ostracised, even until this day; often they were lonely,
often longed for a word of sympathy, often craved association with their
own race, but for thirty years they have been treated by the Christian
white women of the South,--simply because they were doing your
work,--the work committed to you by your Saviour, when he said,
"Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you
did it unto me,"--with a contempt that would serve to justify a
suspicion that instead of being the most cultured women, the purest,
bravest missionaries in America, they were outcasts and lepers.

But at last a change has come. And so you have "decided to take up the
work of moral and industrial training of the Negroes," as you "have been
doing this work among the whites with splendid results." This is one of
the most hopeful stars that have shot through the darkness of the
Southern sky. What untold blessings might not the educated Christian
women of the South prove to the Negro groping blindly in the darkness of
the swamps and bogs of prejudice for a highway out of servitude,
oppression, ignorance, and immorality!

* * * * *

The leading women of Georgia should not ask Northern charity to do what
they certainly must have the means for making a beginning of themselves.
If your heart is really in this work--and we do not question it--the
very best way for you to atone for your negligence in the past is to
make a start yourselves. Surely if the conditions are as serious as you
represent them to be, your husbands, who are men of large means, who are
able to run great expositions and big peace celebrations, will be
willing to provide you with the means to protect your virtue and that of
your daughters by the moral training you propose to give in the

There is much you might do without the contribution of a dollar from any
pocket, Northern or Southern. On every plantation there are scores, if
not hundreds, of little colored children who could be gathered about
you on a Sabbath afternoon and given many helpful inspiring lessons in
morals and good conduct.

* * * * *

It is a good augury of better days, let us hope, when the intelligent,
broad-minded women of Georgia, spurning the incendiary advice of that
human firebrand who would lynch a thousand Negroes a month, are willing
to join in this great altruistic movement of the age and endeavor to
lift up the degraded and ignorant, rather than to exterminate them. Your
proposition implies that they may be uplifted and further, imports a
tacit confession that if you had done your duty to them at the close of
the war, which both gratitude and prudence should have prompted you to
do, you would not now be confronted with a condition which you feel it
necessary to check, in obedience to the great first law of
nature--self-protection. If you enter upon this work you will doubtless
be criticised by a class of your own people who think you are lowering
your own dignity, but the South has suffered too much already from that
kind of false pride to let it longer keep her recreant to the spirit of
the age.

If, when you have entered upon it, you need the co-operation, either by
advice or other assistance, of the colored women of the North, we beg to
assure you that they will not be lacking,--until then, the earnest hope
goes out that you will bravely face and sternly conquer your former
prejudices and quickly undertake this missionary work which belongs to


BY J. MADISON VANCE, of New Orleans, La.

[Note 20: Extract from an address delivered at the Music Hall,
Boston, Mass., October 4, 1894, before the Seventh Biennial Meeting of
the Grand United Order of Odd Fellows of America.]

In these trying times of peace with tears of blood; these times of
crimes so horrible and fiendish that Christianity bows in supplication
for surcease of sorrow, and the advance of civilization seems in vain;
in these times when the Negro is compared to the brute, and his
mentality limited to the ordinary; in these times when the holy robes of
the Church are used to decry, villify and malign the race; in these
times when the subsidized press of the country loudly proclaims the
Negro's incapacity for government; in these times I turn with pardonable
pride to the Grand United Order of Odd Fellows, an organization the
affairs of which are administered entirely by colored men, an
organization that typifies the possibilities of the race; the
organization whose very existence gives the lie to the damnable
aspersions cast upon us by the enemies of humanity.

This grand organization is but a collection of individuals, and as
individuals we must shape our destiny. The time is past for pleading;
these are days of action. The higher we rise, the sharper will become
the prejudice of color. The laboring white is jealous of the
competition of the blacks. The problem is to be worked out _in the
South_, and largely by ourselves. With all the disadvantages and
proscriptive doctrines that encroach upon us in that Southland, I
honestly believe that this land with all its natural beauties and
advantages, this land below the mountains; this land of passion and
pleasure, of fever and fret, this land famed in history, song, and story
as the "land of Dixie," is the Negro's coming Arcadia. From its lowlands
and marshes will yet come forth the peerless leader, who will not only
point out the way, but will climb the battlements of tolerance and race
prejudice, backed by the march of civilization, and, with his face to
the enemy, fight the battle of common humanity.

The romance of "Emancipation" is fading out. The old slave is rapidly
passing. The mythology of his period is extinct. The Republic has
declared against the "Force Bill." The "Prætorian Guard" is mustered
out, and the sentiment of the times is against paternalism. "Every tub
must stand on its own bottom," and the eloquence of the orator cannot
arrest the trend of the times. A problem is half solved when facts are
apprehended; it is more than half solved when the facts are
comprehended, and practical sense succeeds sentiment.

The Negro confronts destiny. He must be the architect of his own
fortune. He must demonstrate capacity and independence, because
mendicancy is always destructive. The living present calls us away from
the ashes of the dead and buried past. Our hopes are brighter and our
ambitions higher. Let us stand on our own racial pride, and prove our
claim for equality by showing the fruits of thrift, talent, and
frugality. The brotherhood of genius will not refuse the need of merit,
and within the sweep of our constant observations great artists,
musicians, poets, and orators are more than hinted possibilities. We
would be criminals to despair. The Negro is here, and here to stay, and
traveling rapidly in "the wake of coming ages." We know not how far the
goal may still be distant, but at least we think we see it and our most
fervent hope is to approach it more and more nearly--

    "Till each man find his own in all men's good,
    And all men work in noble brotherhood,
    Breaking their mailed fleets and armed towers,
    And ruling by obeying nature's powers,
    And gathering all the fruits of earth and crowned with her flowers."

As the shadows come creeping over the dial of time, the nineteenth
century faces the setting sun; a century replete with the grandest
inventions of modern times, and with a fullness of scientific
investigation beyond the possible conception of man one hundred years
ago. This century has emancipated woman, and like the "Dreamers on the
brow of Parnassus," she is not forgetful of the toilers on other
altitudes within the horizon's rim. She is not blind to the signal
lights, which in their blaze proclaim new knowledge, new power for man,
new triumphs, new glory for the human spirit in its march on chaos and
the dark. Any message of love would be incomplete without her gentle
voice. Her love is her life, white-winged and eternal. Her welcome is
spontaneous, fervid, whole-souled, generous. Her influence is felt
everywhere, throughout the ramifications of our "Order." The wholesome
power of her persuasive counsel is ofttimes needed, and the tender
mercies of her tireless devotion have smoothed away the grim visage of
discontent, brought solace to the fevered brain, and made peaceful that
dreary journey from life to death.

* * * * *

We look out upon our vast army of followers, and glory in our stalwart
band. * * * * * Out of the darkness of the night, imposing in our
numbers, stand we forth, splendid and terrible, in "The Wake of the
Coming Ages." And when we look at all the magnificent fabric we call
civilization, its incalculable material, its wealth, its amazing
mechanical resources, its wonderful scientific discoveries, its
many-sided literature, its sleepless and ubiquitous journalism, its
lovely art, its abounding charities, its awful fears and sublime hopes,
we get a magnificent conception of the possibilities of life, as this
latest of the centuries draws its purple robe about its majestic form
and stands up to die as the old Roman Cæsar stood, in all the
magnificence of its riches, and the plenitude of its power.

But after all, the measure of its value is the character of it



_of Tuskegee Institute_

[Note 21: Atlanta, Georgia, September 18, 1895.]

_Mr. President and Gentlemen of the Board of Directors, and Citizens:_

One-third of the population of the South is of the Negro race. No
enterprise seeking the material, civil, or moral welfare of this section
can disregard this element of our population and reach the highest
success. I but convey to you, Mr. President and Directors, the sentiment
of the masses of my race when I say that in no way have the value and
manhood of the American Negro been more fittingly and generously
recognized than by the managers of this magnificent Exposition at every
stage of its progress. It is a recognition that will do more to cement
the friendship of the two races than any occurrence since the dawn of
our freedom.

Not only this, but the opportunity here afforded will awaken among us a
new era of industrial progress. Ignorant and inexperienced, it is not
strange that in the first years of our new life we began at the top
instead of at the bottom; that a seat in Congress or the State
Legislature was more sought than real estate or industrial skill; that
the political convention or stump-speaking had more attractions than
starting a dairy-farm or truck-garden.

A ship lost at sea for many days suddenly sighted a friendly vessel.
From the mast of the unfortunate vessel was seen a signal: "Water,
water; we die of thirst!" The answer from the friendly vessel at once
came back: "Cast down your bucket where you are." A second time the
signal, "Water, water; send us water!" ran up from the distressed
vessel, and was answered: "Cast down your bucket where you are." And a
third and fourth signal for water was answered: "Cast down your bucket
where you are." The captain of the distressed vessel, at last heeding
the injunction, cast down his bucket, and it came up full of fresh,
sparkling water from the mouth of the Amazon River. To those of my race
who depend on bettering their condition in a foreign land, or who
underestimate the importance of cultivating friendly relations with the
Southern white man, who is their next-door neighbor, I would say: "Cast
down your bucket where you are"--cast it down in making friends in every
manly way of the people of all races by whom we are surrounded.

Cast it down in agriculture, mechanics, in commerce, in domestic
service, and in the professions. And in this connection it is well to
bear in mind that whatever other sins the South may be called to bear,
when it comes to business, pure and simple, it is in the South that the
Negro is given a man's chance in the commercial world, and in nothing
is this Exposition more eloquent than in emphasizing this chance. Our
greatest danger is, that in the great leap from slavery to freedom we
may overlook the fact that the masses of us are to live by the
productions of our hands, and fail to keep in mind that we shall prosper
in proportion as we learn to dignify and glorify common labor and put
brains and skill into the common occupations of life; shall prosper in
proportion as we learn to draw the line between the superficial and the
substantial, the ornamental gewgaws of life and the useful. No race can
prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field
as in writing a poem. It is at the bottom of life we must begin, and not
at the top. Nor should we permit our grievances to overshadow our

To those of the white race who look to the incoming of those of foreign
birth and strange tongue and habits for the prosperity of the South,
were I permitted I would repeat what I say to my own race, "Cast down
your bucket where you are." Cast it down among the 8,000,000 Negroes
whose habits you know, whose fidelity and love you have tested in days
when to have proved treacherous meant the ruin of your firesides. Cast
down your bucket among these people who have, without strikes and labor
wars, tilled your fields, cleared your forests, builded your railroads
and cities, and brought forth treasures from the bowels of the earth and
helped make possible this magnificent representation of the progress of
the South. Casting down your bucket among my people, helping and
encouraging them as you are doing on these grounds, and to education of
head, hand, and heart, you will find that they will buy your surplus
land, make blossom the waste places in your fields, and run your
factories. While doing this, you can be sure in the future, as in the
past, that you and your families will be surrounded by the most patient,
faithful, law-abiding, and unresentful people that the world has seen.
As we have proved our loyalty to you in the past, in nursing your
children, watching by the sick-beds of your mothers and fathers, and
often following them with tear-dimmed eyes to their graves, so in the
future, in our humble way, we shall stand by you with a devotion that no
foreigner can approach, ready to lay down our lives, if need be, in
defense of yours, interlacing our industrial, commercial, civil, and
religious life with yours in a way that shall make the interests of both
races one. In all things that are purely social we can be as separate as
the fingers, yet one as the hand in all things essential to mutual

There is no defense or security for any of us except in the highest
intelligence and development of all. If anywhere there are efforts
tending to curtail the fullest growth of the Negro, let these efforts be
turned into stimulating, encouraging, and making him the most useful and
intelligent citizen. Efforts or means so invested will pay a thousand
per cent. interest. These efforts will be twice blessed--"blessing him
that gives and him that takes."

There is no escape through law of man or God from the inevitable:

    "The laws of changeless justice bind
      Oppressor with oppressed;
    And close as sin and suffering joined
      We march to fate abreast."

Nearly sixteen millions of hands will aid you in pulling the load
upwards, or they will pull against you the load downwards. We shall
constitute one-third and more of the ignorance and crime of the South,
or one-third its intelligence and progress; we shall contribute
one-third to the business and industrial prosperity of the South, or we
shall prove a veritable body of death, stagnating, depressing, retarding
every effort to advance the body politic.

Gentlemen of the Exposition, as we present to you our humble effort at
an exhibition of our progress, you must not expect overmuch. Starting
thirty years ago with ownership here and there in a few quilts and
pumpkins and chickens, remember the path, that has led from these to the
invention and production of agricultural implements, buggies,
steam-engines, newspapers, books, statuary, carving, paintings, the
management of drug stores and banks, has not been trodden without
contact with thorns and thistles. While we take pride in what we exhibit
as a result of our independent efforts, we do not for a moment forget
that our part in this exhibition would fall far short of your
expectations but for the constant help that has come to our educational
life, not only from the Southern States, but especially from Northern
philanthropists, who have made their gifts a constant stream of blessing
and encouragement.

The wisest among my race understand that the agitation of questions of
social equality is the extremest folly, and that progress in the
enjoyment of all the privileges that will come to us must be the result
of severe and constant struggle rather than of artificial forcing. No
race that has anything to contribute to the markets of the world is long
in any degree ostracized. It is important and right that all privileges
of the law be ours, but it is vastly more important that we be prepared
for the exercises of these privileges. The opportunity to earn a dollar
in a factory just now is worth infinitely more than the opportunity to
spend a dollar in an opera-house.

In conclusion, may I repeat that nothing in thirty years has given us
more hope and encouragement, and drawn us so near to you of the white
race, as this opportunity offered by the Exposition; and here bending,
as it were, over the altar that represents the results of the struggles
of your race and mine, both starting practically empty-handed three
decades ago, I pledge that in your effort to work out the great and
intricate problem which God has laid at the doors of the South you shall
have at all times the patient, sympathetic help of my race; only let
this be constantly in the mind that, while from representations in these
buildings of the product of field, of forest, of mine, of factory,
letters, and art, much good will come, yet far above and beyond material
benefits will be that higher good, that let us pray God will come, in a
blotting out of sectional differences and racial animosities and
suspicions, in a determination to administer absolute justice, in a
willing obedience among all classes to the mandates of law. This, this,
coupled with our material prosperity, will bring into our beloved
Southland a new heaven and a new earth.



CHRISTIAN A. FLEETWOOD, _Sergeant-Major, United States Volunteer
Infantry, 1863-1866. Received a Medal of Honor from Congress for
meritorious action in saving the colors at Chapin Farm, September 29,
1864, where he seized them after two color-bearers had been shot down,
and bore them throughout the fight. Also has a General B. F. Butler
Medal for bravery and courage before Richmond._

[Note 22: Delivered at the Negro Congress, at the Cotton States and
International Exposition, Atlanta Ga., November 11 to November 23,

For 1600 years prior to the war between Great Britain and the Colonies,
the pages of history bear no record of the Negro as a soldier. Tracing
his separate history in the Revolutionary War is a task of much
difficulty, for the reason that while individual instances of valor and
patriotism abound, there were so few separate bodies of Negro troops
that no separate record appears to have been made. The simple fact is
that the fathers as a rule enlisted men both for the Army and Navy, just
as now it is only continued by the Navy; that is to say, they were
assigned wherever needed, without regard to race or color. Varner's
Rhode Island Battalion appears to have been the only large aggregation
of Negroes in this war, though Connecticut, New York, and New Hampshire
each furnished one separate company in addition to individuals scattered
through their other organizations, so that ere the close of the war,
there were very few brigades, regiments, or companies in which the
Negro was not in evidence.

The free Negro appears to have gone in from the beginning without
attracting or calling out special comment. Later, as men grew scarcer
and necessity more pressing, slaves were taken in also, and then the
trouble began. Those who held slaves did not care to lose them in this
way. Others who had not did not think it just the thing in a war for
avowed freedom to place an actual slave in the ranks to fight. Some did
not want the Negro, bonded or free, to take part as a soldier in the
struggle. So that in May, 1775, the Massachusetts Committee of Safety
voted that thereafter only free men should be enlisted. In July, General
Gates issued an order prohibiting further enlistments of Negroes, but
saying nothing of those already in the service.

In October a council of war presided over by General Washington,
comprising three major-generals and six brigadier-generals, voted
unanimously against the enlistment of slaves, and by a decided majority
against further enlistments of Negroes. Ten days later in a conference
held at Cambridge, Mass., participated in by General Washington,
Benjamin Franklin, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Lynch, and the deputy
governors of Connecticut and Rhode Island, a similar action was taken.

On the 7th November, 1775, Earl Dundore, commanding the force of His
Majesty the King, issued a proclamation offering freedom and equal pay
to all slaves who would join his armies as soldiers. It did not take the
colonists long to find out their mistake, although General Washington,
in accordance with the expressed will of his officers and of the
Committee of Safety, did on the 17th of November, 1775, issue a
proclamation forbidding the further enlistment of Negroes. Less than two
months later, that is to say on the 30th of December, 1775, he issued a
second proclamation again authorizing the enlistment of free Negroes. He
advised Congress of his action, and stated that he would recall it if so
directed. But he was not. The splendid service rendered by the Negro and
the great and pressing need of men were such, that although the
opposition continued from some sections, it was not thereafter strong
enough to obtain recognition. So the Negroes went and came, much as
other men.

In all the events of the war, from Bunker Hill to Yorktown, they bore an
honorable part. The history of the doings of the armies is their
history, as in everything they took part and did their share. Their
total enlistment was about 3,000 men,--a very fair percentage for the
population of that period. I might instance the killing of Major
Pitcairn, at Bunker Hill, by Peter Salem, and of Major Montgomery, at
Fort Griswold, by Jordan Freeman. The part they took in the capture of
Major-General Prescott at Newport; their gallant defense of Colonel
Greene, their beloved commander, when he was surprised and murdered at
Croton River, May 13, 1781, when it was only after the last of his
faithful guards had been shot and cut down that he was reached; or the
battle of Rhode Island, when a battalion of 400 Negroes withstood three
separate and distinct charges from 1,500 Hessians under Count Donop,
and beat them back with such tremendous loss that Count Donop at once
applied for an exchange, fearing that his men would kill him, if he went
into battle with them again, for having exposed them to such slaughter;
and many other instances that are of record. The letter following,
written December 5, 1775, explains itself:


"The subscribers beg leave to report to your Honorable House (which we
do in justice to the character of so brave a man) that under our own
observation we declare that a Negro man named Salem Poor, of Colonel
Frye's Regiment, Captain Ames' Company, in the late battle at
Charleston, behaved like an experienced officer as well as an excellent
soldier. To set forth particulars of his conduct would be tedious. We
would only beg to say, in the person of this Negro centers a brave and
gallant soldier. The reward due to so great and distinguished a
character we submit to Congress."

This is a splendid and well-attested tribute to a gallant and worthy
Negro. There were many such, but, beyond receiving and reading, no
action was taken thereon by Congress. There is no lack of incidents, and
the temptation to quote many of them is great, but the time allotted me
is too brief for extended mention, and I must bring this branch of my
subject to a close. It is in evidence that while so many Negroes were
offering their lives a willing sacrifice for the country, in some
sections the officers of the Continental forces received their bounty
and pay in Negroes, "grown" and "small," instead of "dollars" and
"cents." Fighting for _liberty_ and taking pay in _slaves_!

When the war was over the free men returned to meet their same
difficulties; the slaves were caught when possible and re-enslaved by
their former masters. In Boston a few years later we find a party of
black patriots of the Revolution mobbed on Boston Common while
celebrating the anniversary of the abolition of the slave-trade.

The captain of a vessel trading along the coast tells of a Negro who had
fought in the war and been distinguished for bravery and soldierly
conduct. He was reclaimed and re-enslaved by his master after the war,
and served him faithfully until old age rendered him useless. The master
then brought the poor old slave to this captain and asked him to take
him along on his trip and try to sell him. The captain hated to sell a
man who had fought for his country, but finally agreed, took the poor
old man to Mobile, and sold him for $100 to a man who put him to
attending a chicken-coop. His former master continued to draw the old
slave's pension as a soldier in the Revolution, until he died.

The War of 1812 was mainly fought upon the water, and in the American
Navy at that time the Negro stood in the ratio of about one to six. We
find record of complaint by Commodore Perry at the beginning because of
the large number of Negroes sent him, but later the highest tribute to
their bravery and efficiency. Captain Shaler, of the armed brig _General
Thompson_, writing of an engagement between his vessel and a British
frigate, says:

"The name of one of my poor fellows who was killed ought to be
registered in the book of fame, and remembered as long as bravery is a
virtue. He was a black man, by name John Johnson. A twenty-four pound
shot struck him in the hip, and took away all the lower part of his
body. In this state the poor brave fellow lay on the deck, and several
times exclaimed to his shipmates: 'Fire away, my boys; nor haul a color
down!' Another black man, by the name of John Davis, who was struck in
much the same manner, repeatedly requested to be thrown overboard,
saying that he was only in the way of the others."

I know of nothing finer in history than these incidents of valor and

As before, the Negro was not universally welcomed to the ranks of the
American Army; but later, continued reverses and a lack of enthusiasm in
enlistments made it necessary to seek his aid, and from Mobile, Ala., on
September 21, 1814, General Jackson issued a stirring call to the free
colored people of Louisiana for aid.

In a remarkably short period, two battalions were raised, under Majors
LaCaste and Savary, which did splendid service in the battle of New
Orleans. New York enrolled two battalions, and sent them to Sacketts
Harbor. Pennsylvania enrolled 2400, and sent them to Gray's Ferry at the
capture of Washington, to prepare for the invading column. Another
battalion also was raised, armed, equipped, and ready to start to the
front, when peace was declared.

In one of the actions of this war, a charging column of the American
Army was repulsed and thrown into great disorder. A Negro private named
Jeffreys, seeing the disaster, sprang upon a horse, and by heroic effort
rallied the troops, led them back upon a second charge, and completely
routed the enemy. He was rewarded by General Jackson with the honorary
title of Major. Under the laws he could not commission him.

When the war was over, this gallant man returned to his home in
Nashville, Tenn., where he lived for years afterward, highly respected
by its citizens of all races.

At the age of seventy years, this black hero was obliged, _in
self-defense_, to strike a white ruffian, who had assaulted him. Under
the laws of the State he was arrested and given nine and thirty lashes
on his bare back. It broke his heart, and Major Jeffreys died.

It seems a little singular that in the tremendous struggle between the
States in 1861-1865, the South should have been the first to take steps
toward the enlistment of Negroes. Yet such is the fact. Two weeks after
the fall of Fort Sumter, the _Charleston Mercury_ records the passing
through Augusta of several companies of the the 3rd and 4th Georgia
Regiment, and of sixteen well-drilled companies _and one Negro company_
from Nashville, Tenn.

_The Memphis Avalanche_ and _The Memphis Appeal_ of May 9, 10, and 11,
1861, gave notice of the appointment by the "Committee of Safety" of a
committee of three persons "to organize a volunteer company composed of
our patriotic freemen of color of the city of Memphis, for the service
of our common defense."

A telegram from New Orleans dated November 23, 1861, notes the review by
Governor Moore of over 28,000 troops, and that one regiment comprised
"_1,400 colored men_." The _New Orleans Picayune_, referring to a review
held February 9, 1862, says: "We must also pay a deserved compliment to
the companies of free colored men, all very well drilled and comfortably

It is a little odd, too, that in the evacuation of New Orleans a little
later, in April, 1862, all of the troops succeeded in getting away
except the Negroes. They "got left."

It is not in our line to speculate upon what would have been the result
of the war had the South kept up this policy, enlisted the freemen, and
emancipated the enlisting slaves and their families. The immense
addition to their fighting force, the quick recognition of them by Great
Britain, to which slavery was the greatest bar, and the fact that the
heart of the Negro was with the South but for slavery, and the case
stands clear. But the primary successes of the South closed its eyes to
its only chance of salvation, while at the same time the eyes of the
North were opened.

In 1865, the South saw, and endeavored to remedy, its error. On March 9,
1865, the Confederate Congress passed a bill, recommended by General
Lee, authorizing the enlistment of 200,000 Negroes; but it was then too

The North came slowly and reluctantly to recognize the Negro as a factor
for good in the war. "This is a white man's war," met the Negroes at
every step of their first efforts to gain admission to the armies of the

To General David Hunter, more than to any other one man, is due the
credit for the successful entry upon the stage of the Negro as a soldier
in this war.

In the spring of 1862, he raised and equipped a regiment of Negroes in
South Carolina, and when the fact because known in Washington and
throughout the country, such a storm was raised about the ears of the
Administration that they gracefully stood aside and left the brave
general to fight his enemies in the front and rear as best he might. He
was quite capable to do both, as it proved.

* * * * *

The beginning of 1863 saw the opening of the doors to the Negro in every
direction. General Lorenzo Thomas went in person to the valley of the
Mississippi to supervise it there. Massachusetts was authorized to fill
its quota with Negroes. The States of Maryland, Missouri, Delaware, and
Tennessee were thrown open by order of the War Department, and all
slaves enlisting therefrom declared free. Ohio, Connecticut,
Pennsylvania, and New York joined the band and sent the stalwart black
boy in blue to the front singing, "Give us a flag, all free, without a
slave." For two years the fierce and determined opposition had kept them
out, but now the bars were down and they came pouring in. Some one said,
"he cared not who made the laws of a people if he could make their
songs." A better exemplification of this would be difficult to find
than is the song written by "Miles O'Reilly" (Colonel Halpine), of the
old 10th Army Corps. I cannot resist the temptation to quote it here.
With General Hunter's letter and this song to quote from, the episode
was closed:

  "Some say it is a burning shame to make the Naygurs fight,
  An' that the trade o' being kilt belongs but to the white;
  But as for me, upon me sowl, so liberal are we here,
  I'll let Sambo be murthered, in place of meself, on every day of the year.
  On every day of the year, boys, and every hour in the day,
  The right to be kilt I'll divide wid him, and divil a word I'll say.

  In battles' wild commotion I shouldn't at all object
  If Sambo's body should stop a ball that was coming for me direct,
  An' the prod of a Southern bayonet; so liberal are we here,
  I'll resign and let Sambo take it, on every day in the year,
  On every day in the year, boys, an' wid none of your nasty pride,
  All right in Southern baynet prod, wid Sambo I'll divide.

  The men who object to Sambo should take his place and fight,
  An' it is betther to have a Naygur's hue, than a liver that's weak an' white,
  Though Sambo's black as the ace of spades, his finger a thryger can pull,
  An' his eye runs straight on the barrel-sight from under its thatch of wool.
  So hear me all, boys, darlin', don't think I'm tipping you chaff,--
  The right to be kilt, I'll divide with him, an' give him the largest half."

It took three years of war to place the enlisted Negro upon the same
ground as the enlisted white man as to pay and emoluments; _perhaps_ six
years of war might have given him shoulder-straps, but the war ended
without authorization of law for that step. At first they were received,
under an act of Congress that allowed each one, without regard to rank,
ten dollars per month, three dollars thereof to be retained for clothing
and equipments. I think it was in May, 1864, when the act was passed
equalizing the pay, but not opening the doors to promotion.

Under an act of the Confederate Congress, making it a crime punishable
with death for any white person to train Negroes or mulattoes to arms,
or aid them in any military enterprise, and devoting the Negro caught
under arms to the tender mercies of the "present or future laws of the
State" in which caught, a large number of _promotions_ were made by the
way of a rope and a tree along the first year of the Negro's service. (I
can even recall one instance as late as April, 1865, though it had been
long before then generally discontinued.)

What the Negro did, how he did it, and where, it would take volumes to
properly record, I can however give but briefest mention to a few of the
many evidences of his fitness for the duties of the war, and his aid to
the cause of the Union.

The first fighting done by organized Negro troops appears to have been
done by Company A, 1st South Carolina Negro Regiment, at St. Helena
Island, November 3 to 10, 1862, while participating in an expedition
along the coast of Georgia and Florida under Lieutenant-Colonel O. T.
Beard, of the 48th New York Infantry, who says in his report:

"The colored men fought with astonishing coolness and bravery. I found
them all I could desire,--more than I had hoped. They behaved
gloriously, and deserve all praise."

The testimony thus inaugurated runs like a cord of gold through the web
and woof of the history of the Negro as a soldier from that date to
their final charge, the last made at Clover Hill, Va., April 9, 1865.

Necessarily the first actions in which the Negro bore a part commanded
most attention. Friends and enemies were looking eagerly to see how they
would acquit themselves, and so it comes to pass that the names of Fort
Wagner, Olustee, Millikens Bend, Port Hudson, and Fort Pillow are as
familiar as Bull Run, Antietam, Shiloh and Gettysburg, and while those
first experiences were mostly severe reverses, they were by that very
fact splendid exemplifiers of the truth that the Negroes could be relied
upon to fight under the most adverse circumstances, against any odds,
and could not be discouraged.

Let us glance for a moment at Port Hudson, La., in May, 1863, assaulted
by General Banks with a force of which the 1st and 2nd Regiments,
Louisiana Native Guards, formed a part. When starting upon their
desperate mission, Colonel Stafford of the 1st Regiment, in turning over
the regimental colors to the color-guard, made a brief and patriotic
address, closing with the words:

"Color-guard: Protect, defend, die for, but do not surrender, these
colors." The gallant flag-sergeant, Plancianos, taking them replied:
"Colonel: I will bring back these colors to you in honor, or report to
God the reason why."

Six times with desperate valor they charged over ground where success
was hopeless, a deep bayou between them and the works of the enemy at
the point of attack rendering it impossible to reach them, yet strange
to say, six times they were ordered forward and six times they went to
useless death, until swept back by the blazing breath of shot and shell
before which nothing living could stand. Here fell the gallant Captain
Cailloux, black as the ace of spades. Refusing to leave the field though
his arm had been shattered by a bullet, he returned to the charge until
killed by a shell.

A soldier limping painfully to the front was halted and asked where he
was going. He replied, "I am shot bad in de leg, and dey want me to go
to de hospital, but I guess I can give 'em a little more yet."

The colors came back, but crimsoned with the blood of the gallant
Plancianos, who reported to God from that bloody field.

Shall we glance from this to Millikens Bend, La., in January, 1863,
garrisoned by the 9th and 11th Louisiana and the 1st Mississippi, all
Negroes, and about 160 of the 23rd Iowa (white), about 1100 fighting men
in all? Attacked by a force of six Confederate regiments, crushed out of
their works by sheer weight of numbers, borne down toward the levee,
fighting every step of the way, hand to hand--clubbed musket, bayonets,
and swords,--from three A. M. to twelve noon, they fought desperately
until a Union gun-boat came to the rescue and shelled the desperate foe
back to the woods, with a total loss to the defenders of 437
men,--two-fifths of their strength.

Shall we turn with sadness to Fort Wagner, S. C., in July, 1863, when
the 54th Massachusetts won its deathless fame, and its grand young
commander, Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, passed into the temple of
immortality? After a march of all day, under a burning sun, and all
night through a tempest of wind and rain, drenched, exhausted, hungry,
they wheeled into line, without a murmur for that awful charge, that
dance of death, the struggle against hopeless odds, and the shattered
remnants were hurled back as from the mouth of hell, leaving the dead
bodies of their young commander and his noble followers to be buried in
a common grave. Its total loss was about one-third of its strength.

Here it was that the gallant flag-sergeant, Carney, though grievously
wounded, bore back his flag to safety, and fell fainting and exhausted
with loss of blood, saying, "Boys, the old flag never touched the
ground!" Or another glance, at ill-starred Olustee, where the gallant
8th United States Colored Troops lost 87 killed of its effective
fighting force, the largest loss in any one colored regiment in any one
action of the war. And so on, by Fort Pillow, which let us pass in
merciful silence, and to Honey Hill, S. C., perhaps the last desperate
fight in the far south, in which the 32nd, 35th, and 102nd United States
Colored Troops and the 54th and 55th Massachusetts Infantry won fresh
and fadeless laurels for splendid fighting against hopeless odds and
insurmountable difficulties, and then to Nashville, Tenn., with its
recorded loss of 84 killed in the effectives of the 13th United States
Colored Troops.

These were all brilliant actions, and they covered the actors with, and
reflected upon the race, a blaze of glory. But it was in the armies of
the James and of the Potomac that the true metal of the Negro as a
soldier rang out its clearest notes amid the tremendous diapasons that
rolled back and forth between the embattled hosts. Here was war indeed,
upon its grandest scale and in all its infinite variety: The tireless
march under burning sun, chilling frosts, and driven tempests; the
lonely vigil of the picket under starless skies, the rush and roar of
countless "hosts to battle driven" in the mad charge and the victorious
shout that pursued the fleeing foe; the grim determination that held its
line of defenses with set teeth, blood-shot eye, and strained muscle,
beating back charge after charge of the foe; the patient labor in trench
and mine, on hill and in valley, swamp and jungle, with disease adding
its horrors to the decimation of shot and shell.

Here the Negro stood in the full glare of the greatest search-light,
part and parcel of the grandest armies ever mustered upon this
continent, competing side by side with the best and bravest of the Union
Army against the flower of the Confederacy, the best and bravest of
Lee's army, and losing nothing in the contrast. Never again while time
lasts will the doubt arise as in 1861, "Will the Negro fight?" As a
problem, it has been solved; as a question, it has been answered; and as
a fact, it is as established as the eternal hills. It was the Negroes
who rang up the curtain upon the last act of the bloody tragedy at
Petersburg, Va., June 15, 1864, and they who rang it down at Clover
Hill, Va., April 9, 1865. They were one of the strong fingers upon the
mighty hand that grasped the giant's throat at Petersburg and never
flexed until the breath went out at Appomattox. In this period it would
take page on page to recount their deeds of valor and their glorious

See them on the 15th of June, 1864, carrying the out-post at Baylor's
field in early morning, and all that long, hot, summer day advancing, a
few yards at a time, then lying down to escape the fire from the works,
but still gradually creeping nearer and nearer, until, just as the sun
went down, they swept like a tornado over the works and started upon a
race for the city, close at the heels of the flying foe, until
mistakenly ordered back. Of this day's experience General Badeau writes:
"No worse strain on the nerves of troops is possible, for it is harder
to remain quiet under cannon fire, even though comparatively harmless,
than to advance against a storm of musketry." General W. F. "Baldy"
Smith, speaking of their conduct, says: "No nobler effort has been put
forth to-day, and no greater success achieved than that of the colored

* * * * *

Or, again, at the terrible mine explosion of July 30, 1864, on the
Petersburg line, and at the fearful slaughter of September 29, 1864, at
New Market Heights and Fort Harrison. On this last date in the Fourth
United States Colored Troops, out of a color-guard of twelve men, but
one came off the field on his own feet. The gallant flag-sergeant,
Hilton, the last to fall, cried out as he went down, "Boys, save the
colors"; and they were saved.

* * * * *

Some ten or more years later, in Congress, in the midst of a speech
advocating the giving of civil rights to the Negro, General Butler said,
referring to this incident:

"There, in a space not wider than the clerk's desk, and three hundred
yards long, lay the dead bodies of 543 of my colored comrades, slain in
the defense of their country, who had laid down their lives to uphold
its flag and its honor, as a willing sacrifice. And as I rode along,
guiding my horse this way and that, lest he should profane with his
hoofs what seemed to me the sacred dead, and as I looked at their
bronzed faces upturned in the shining sun, as if in mute appeal against
the wrongs of the country for which they had given their lives, and
whose flag had been to them a flag of stripes, in which no star of glory
had ever shone for them--feeling I had wronged them in the past, and
believing what was the future duty of my country to them,--I swore to
myself a solemn oath: 'May my right hand forget its cunning, and my
tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, if ever I fail to defend the
rights of the men who have given their blood for me and my country this
day and for their race forever.' And, God helping me, I will keep that

* * * * *

History further repeats itself in the fact that in every war so far
known to this country, the first blood, and, in some cases, the last
also, has been shed by the faithful Negro, and this in spite of all the
years of bondage and oppression, and of wrongs unspeakable. Under the
sun there has nothing been known in the history of any people more
marvellous than these facts!

    Oh, to the living few,
    Comrades, be just, be true.
    Hail them as heroes tried,
    Fight with them side by side;
    Never in field or tent,
    Scorn the Black Regiment.

It is but a little thing to ask, they could ask no less: _be just_; but,
oh, the shame of it for those who need be asked!

There is no need for panegyric, for sounding phrases or rounded periods.
The simple story is eloquent with all that is necessary to make the
heart swell with pride. In the hour allotted me to fill, it is possible
only to indicate in skeleton the worth of the Negro as a soldier. If
this brief sketch should awaken even a few to interest in his
achievements, and one be found willing and fitted to write the history
that is their due, that writer shall achieve immortality.



[Note 23: An address by Booker T. Washington, A. M., delivered on
the occasion of the unveiling of the Robert Gould Shaw Monument, Boston,
Mass., May 31, 1897.]

_Mr. Chairman and Fellow Citizens:_

In this presence, and on this sacred and memorable day, in the deeds and
death of our hero, we recall the old, old story, ever old yet ever new,
that when it was the will of the Father to lift humanity out of
wretchedness and bondage, the precious task was delegated to Him who,
among ten thousand, was altogether lovely, and was willing to make
himself of no reputation that he might save and lift up others.

If that heart could throb and if those lips could speak, what would be
the sentiment and words that Robert Gould Shaw would have us feel and
speak at this hour? He would not have us dwell long on the mistakes, the
injustice, the criticisms of the days

    "Of storm and cloud, of doubt and fears,
    Across the eternal sky must lower;
    Before the glorious noon appears,"

he would have us bind up with his own undying fame and memory and retain
by the side of his monument, the name of John A. Andrews, who, with
prophetic vision and strong arm, helped to make the existence of the
54th Regiment possible; and that of George L. Stearns, who, with hidden
generosity and a great sweet heart, helped to turn the darkest hour into
day, and in doing so, freely gave service, fortune, and life itself to
the cause which this day commemorates. Nor would he have us forget those
brother officers, living and dead, who by their baptism in blood and
fire, in defense of union and freedom, gave us an example of the highest
and purest patriotism.

To you who fought so valiantly in the ranks, the scarred and scattered
remnant of the 54th Regiment, who, with empty sleeve and wanting leg,
have honored this occasion with your presence, to you, your commander is
not dead. Though Boston erected no monument and history recorded no
story, in you and the loyal race which you represent Robert Gould Shaw
would have a monument which time could not wear away.

But an occasion like this is too great, too sacred for mere individual
eulogy. The individual is the instrument, national virtue the end. That
which was 300 years being woven into the warp and woof of our democratic
institutions could not be effaced by a single battle, as magnificent as
was that battle; that which for three centuries had bound master and
slave, yea, North and South, to a body of death, could not be blotted
out by four years of war, could not be atoned for by shot and sword, nor
by blood and tears.

Not many days ago in the heart of the South, in a large gathering of
the people of my race, there were heard from many lips praises and
thanksgiving to God for His goodness in setting them free from physical
slavery. In the midst of that assembly there arose a Southern white man
the former owner of many slaves, gray of hair and with hands which
trembled, and from his quivering lips, there came the words; "My
friends, you forget in your rejoicing that, in setting you free, God was
also good to me and my race in setting us free." But there is a higher
and deeper sense in which both races must be free than that represented
by the bill of sale. The black man who cannot let love and sympathy go
out to the white man is but half free. The white man who would close the
shop or factory against a black man seeking an opportunity to earn an
honest living is but half free. The white man who retards his own
development by opposing a black man is but half free. The full measure
of the fruit of Fort Wagner and all that this monument stands for will
not be realized until every man covered with a black skin shall, by
patience and natural effort, grow to that height in industry, property,
intelligence, and moral responsibility, where no man in all our land
will be tempted to degrade himself by withholding from his black brother
any opportunity which he himself would possess.

Until that time comes this monument will stand for effort, not victory
complete. What these heroic souls of the 54th Regiment began, we must
complete. It must be completed not in malice, not in narrowness; nor
artificial progress, nor in efforts at mere temporary political gain,
nor in abuse of another section or race. Standing as I do to-day in the
home of Garrison and Phillips and Sumner, my heart goes out to those who
wore gray as well as to those clothed in blue; to those who returned
defeated, to destitute homes, to face blasted hopes and a shattered
political and industrial system. To them there can be no prouder reward
for defeat than by a supreme effort to place the Negro on that footing
where he will add material, intellectual, and civil strength to every
department of State.

This work must be completed in public school, industrial school, and
college. The most of it must be completed in the effort of the Negro
himself, in his effort to withstand temptation, to economize, to
exercise thrift, to disregard the superficial for the real--the shadow
for the substance, to be great and yet small, in his effort to be
patient in the laying of a firm foundation, so to grow in skill and
knowledge that he shall place his services in demand by reason of his
intrinsic and superior worth. This is the key that unlocks every door of
opportunity, and all others fail. In this battle of peace the rich and
poor, the black and white, may have a part.

What lesson has this occasion for the future? What of hope, what of
encouragement, what of caution? "Watchman, tell us of the night; what
the signs of promise are." If through me, an humble representative,
nearly ten millions of my people might be permitted to send a message to
Massachusetts, to the survivors of the 54th Regiment, to the committee
whose untiring energy has made this memorial possible, to the family who
gave their only boy that we might have life more abundantly, that
message would be, "Tell them that the sacrifice was not in vain, that
up from the depth of ignorance and poverty, we are coming, and if we
come through oppression out of the struggle, we are gaining strength. By
the way of the school, the well-cultivated field, the skilled hand, the
Christian home, we are coming up; that we propose to invite all who will
to step up and occupy this position with us. Tell them that we are
learning that standing-ground for the race, as for the individual, must
be laid in intelligence, industry, thrift, and property, not as an end,
but as a means to the highest privileges; that we are learning that
neither the conqueror's bullet nor fiat of law could make an ignorant
voter an intelligent voter, could make a dependent man an independent
man, could give one citizen respect for another, a bank account, a foot
of land, or an enlightened fireside. Tell them that, as grateful as we
are to artist and patriotism for placing the figures of Shaw and his
comrades in physical form of beauty and magnificence, that after all,
the real monument, the greater monument, is being slowly but safely
builded among the lowly in the South, in the struggles and sacrifices of
a race to justify all that has been done and suffered for it."

One of the wishes that lay nearest Colonel Shaw's heart was, that his
black troops might be permitted to fight by the side of white soldiers.
Have we not lived to see that wish realized, and will it not be further
realized in the future? Not at Wagner, not with rifle and bayonet, but
on the field of peace, in the battle of industry, in the struggle for
good government, in the lifting up of the lowest to the fullest
opportunities. In this we shall fight by the side of white men, North
and South. And if this be true, as under God's guidance it will, that
old flag, that emblem of progress and security, which brave Sergeant
Carney never permitted to fall on the ground, will still be borne aloft
by Southern soldier and Northern soldier, and, in a more potent and
higher sense, we shall all realize that

    "The slave's chain and the master's alike are broken;
      The one curse of the race held both in tether;
    They are rising, all are rising--
      The black and the white together."



[Note 24: An address delivered before the Tennessee Centennial
Exposition, Nashville, Tenn., June 5, 1897.]

_Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen:_

I sometimes feel that we, as a race, do not fully appreciate the
importance of industrial education. I feel that the day is near at hand
when the physical apparatus of civil education will play a larger part
in the progress of the world than it has hitherto done. In other words,
I firmly believe that the industrial victories are in the future and not
in the past. We have done much and wrought many miracles, but the
miracles are but evidences of possible powers rather than the high-tide
marks of development. In my mind the possibilities of physical and
scientific achievement are limitless, and beyond the compass of human
conception. Look at iron alone. See what has been done with it in the
last fifty years. See what you are able to do with it here in Tennessee.
From it are made things dainty and things dangerous, carriages and
cannon, spatula and spade, sword and pen, wheel, axle and rail, as well
as screw, file, and saw. It is bound around the hull of ships and lifted
into tower and steeple. It is drawn into wire, coiled into springs,
woven into gauze, twisted into rope, and sharpened into needles. It is
stretched into a web, finer by comparison than the gossamer of the
morning along the bed of the ocean, and made to tick out the yesterday
of Europe on the to-day of America. All of this variety of use has been
made out of the stubbornness of metals by the sovereign touch of
industrial and scientific education. There is inexhaustible promise in
this development. It has brought, and is still bringing, the two great
races closer together. These iron veins and arteries which interlock our
cities and confederate our States do much to familiarize each race with
the hopes and aspirations of the other, and to weave their histories
into one harmonious contexture, as telegraphic messages fly
instantaneously across them, and screaming trains rush back and forth
like shuttles upon a mighty loom. When our fullest expectations shall
have been fulfilled, both races will have the freest opportunity for the
development of their varied capabilities, and, through mutual bonds of
interest and affection and mutual bonds of sympathy and purpose, will
rise the unmatched harmonies of a united people to the imperial
accompaniment of two mighty oceans.

It is a peculiar fact that immediately after the abolition of human
slavery the country started upon an unparalleled career of prosperity.
The West, then almost unexplored, began to develop, and has continued to
do so until now it is studded with proud cities, teeming with throbbing
life, growing like the grass of the prairies in spring-time, advancing
like the steam-engine, baffling distance like the telegraph, and
spreading the pulsations of their mighty hearts to the uttermost parts
of the world. There they stand with their echoing marts of trade, their
stately spires of worship and their magnificent institutions of
learning, as free as the encircling air, as independent as the soaring
eagle, and more powerful than the Roman Empire when in the plenitude of
her power. All of this has been accomplished since the energies of men
were unfettered. Thus it may be said that both races started almost
simultaneously on their careers to fulfill the destiny of this great
country among the countries of the world. And as we started together
substantially, we must end together. We started with most unequal
equipment, to be sure, and under conditions as far apart as the sky from
this pavilion, but we have marched to the same music and in the same
direction ever since, with varying fortunes and unequal steps, but with
no steps backward, until to-day we are able to recognize in each other
and be recognized by all mankind as equals in our attachment to the
land, the laws, the institutions, and the flag of our common country.

The responsibility now rests upon you to improve each minute of your
lives in fitting yourselves for a wiser, better and worthier discharge
of the obligations of American citizenship. You may be constrained to
ask, "What shall we do?" or, with Archimedes of old, exclaim "Give me
where to stand and I will move the world." Let me advise you to stand
where you are. That's the place. Act well your part, and you shall have
accomplished all that is expected of you. My friends, a country like
ours is not governed by law, or courts of justice, or judges, however
wise or puissant. It is governed by public sentiment. Once poison it,
and courts are impotent and judges powerless. Therefore we are
responsible, each and all of us, according to our talents and influence,
for the public sentiment of the day. If it is healthy and just, it is we
who have made it so; if it is unhealthy and unjust, it is we who have
made it or permitted it to become so. And what is this all-powerful, but
imperceptible, entity, this potent influence which controls presidents,
cabinets, congresses, courts, judges, juries, the press and--I regret to
say it--the pulpit? What is public sentiment or public opinion? It is
the multiplied, accumulated opinion of all the people. Every word spoken
or written by man or woman goes to make up this great stream of public
opinion, just as every drop of dew or water goes to make up that mighty
river which divides this imperial continent and turns the spindles of
the ten thousand factories which hug its shores. Hence we are all
responsible for our contribution to the public opinion of the day,
whether our contribution be a raindrop or a Niagara. We are responsible
for what we say and what we leave unsaid, for what we do and what we
leave undone, for what we write and what is unwritten. We are
responsible for the errors we have committed and for those we have taken
no part in overthrowing. So, whether we realize it or not, we are
consciously or unconsciously, intentionally or unintentionally, directly
or indirectly, according to our opportunities and our influence,
responsible for the public sentiment which secures or deprives every
citizen of his rights and of the opportunity for the highest
intellectual and industrial development.

I know that it is sometimes said that we have done very little. Be that
as it may. Thirty years is but a brief time compared with the centuries
in which Norman, Saxon, and Dane have been fusing into the English race.
And yet, we have something to remember when great names are counted,
something to show when great deeds are told. At the same time I would
not have you sit supinely down and wait for the millennium. Far from it.
It is said that all things come to him who waits. That is in part true,
but it is only fifty per cent. of the whole truth. All things come to
him who waits, if he hustles while he waits.

You will need not only education and character, but you also need
level-headedness and accuracy of judgment. Acquire intellectuality, but
acquire practicality at the same time. Do not join that large and
constantly increasing class in this country to whom nothing is desirable
but the impossible. Do not indulge in the pastime of throwing stones at
the stars. Learn to be practical, and, whatever you attempt in life,
remember to think out a plan and a policy before you begin the work.
When you are called upon to go out and do battle, stop and reflect, and
see if there is a reasonable probability of your whipping anybody. If
the probability is not apparent, I would advise you to decline the glove
and reserve your lance for a more "convenient season." Martyrdom is very
attractive, especially attractive to vigorous young men, but it "butters
no parsnips." Therefore, cultivate prudence as well as valor, and study
men as well as books; for you will needs be prepared to meet the living
issues of the present; and if you are wise, you will anticipate the
possible exigencies of the future. To do this you will want both courage
and discretion. Learn the proper value of organization and union, and
never cease to remember that an army divided is an army defeated. You
will neither be able to help yourself nor hurt the enemy by firing paper
bullets. You must organize.

To make steam effective you must bind it up in an engine; to make water
serviceable, you must harness it in a mill; to make electricity
manageable, you must mask it in a battery; and to make men useful in
reformatory or remedial work, you must recruit them into an

And to those present who have not enjoyed the advantages of an
education, let me direct a few remarks. You must not believe that you
cannot assist in the work of building character for the race. Every man
or woman who plays his or her part according to the best lights, who
bears a respected name, or bears the proud title of a "good citizen,"
who is industrious, temperate, upright, law-abiding, and devoted to
whatever is lovely and of good report, is unconsciously pleading the
cause of the race before the great tribunal of the civilized world.

To all such we can only render the tribute which history accords to
those who fight as privates in the battles of human progress, with all
the more devotion and fidelity because their names will never be known.
Whenever a man earns the respect of the community in which he resides,
some part of that respect, some breath of that fragrance is reflected
upon the race of which he is a member.

As a race, we have done much, but we must not forget how much more there
is still to do. We have already demonstrated the possession of powers,
but we must now bring forth the fruits of sustained racial achievement.
To some extent we have been given opportunity, but we must not cease to
remember that no race can be given relative rank--it must win equality
of rating for itself. Hence, we must not only acquire education, but
character as well. It is not only necessary that we should speak well,
but it is more necessary that we should speak the truth. We must not
only acquire that culture which is the golden key that unlocks all doors
and unbars all gates, but we must cultivate that straightforwardness of
purpose and unconquerable determination which enables a people to face
conditions "without fear and without reproach."

And so the last suggestion comes which the hour presents. In the work of
race advancement, we need the service and assistance of all true men and
women. We must have the co-operation of all sections and all conditions.
The cotton-fields of Alabama, the sugar-plantations of Louisiana, and
the coal-mines of Tennessee; the great lakes of the North which winter
roofs with ice, and from which drips refreshing coolness through the hot
summer months, from the fisheries and the factories, from wheat-fields
and pine forests, from meadows billowed with golden grain and orchards
bending beneath their burdens of golden fruit, this advance movement
must receive support. The humble laborer following his plow afield must
do his part; the blacksmith at his forge, the lawyer at the bar, the
fisherman on the banks, the man of science putting nature to the
question, all, without distinction and without exception, must
contribute, according to his station and his opportunity, to the
hastening of the day when the Negro shall take his place by the side of
the other great race of men and form that grand spectacle which Tennyson
had in mind when he spoke of "the parliament of man, the federation of
the world."



Wilberforce University, Ohio. Author of "First Lessons in Greek," the
first and only Greek book written by a Negro, largely used as text-book
in both white and Negro schools. Author of a large number of classical
interpretations, and philological pamphlets._

[Note 25: Address delivered at the Lincoln Day Banquet, Dayton,
Ohio, Feb. 11, 1899.]

Slavery has been well called the "perfected curse of the ages." Every
civilization, ancient and modern, has experienced its blighting,
withering effect, and it has cost thrones to learn the lesson that

    "The laws of changeless justice blind
    Oppressor and oppressed";


    "Close as sin and suffering joined,"

these two

    "March to Fate--abreast."

Since the world began, freedom has been at war with all that savored of
servitude. The sentiment of liberty is innate in every human breast.
Freedom of speech and of action--the right of every man to be his own
master--has ever been the inestimable privilege sought, the boon most
craved. For this guerdon men have fought; for this they have even gladly

It was the unquenchable desire for liberty that brought the Pilgrim
Fathers to Plymouth Rock. They knew that all that is highest and noblest
in the human soul is fostered to its greatest development only under the
blazing sunlight of freedom. And it was the same flame burning in the
heart of the young nation planted on these Western shores that led to
the ratification of the sentiment placed by the hand of Thomas Jefferson
in the corner-stone of our American independence: "We hold these truths
to be self-evident--that all men are created free and equal, that they
are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among
them are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Here was heralded
to the nation prophetic freedom for all mankind and for all generations.

However, the years of bondage for Africa's sons and daughters in this
fair land stretched on over a half century more before the issue was
raised. But at last the grasping arms of the gigantic octopus, that was
feeding at the nation's heart, reached out too far, and the combat with
the monster was begun. Then that laurelled champion and leader of
freedom's cause, Charles S. Sumner, laid his hand upon that Declaration
of Independence and declared that the nation was "dedicated to liberty
and the rights of human nature."

I count it the glory of that gifted humanitarian that he gave his
magnificent talents and energies to the organization of a party that
could add to its _amor patriæ_ the larger, broader, nobler love of
freedom for all mankind; and I count it the glory of that party that it
stood for

    "the voice of a people--uprisen, awake";

that it was "born to make men free."

No matter what name has been inscribed on its banner during its
existence of a full half century, the cause that the party of freedom
espoused has given its standard-bearer a right to claim that it, and it
alone, is the legitimate heir to power in this land where the
forefathers sought the liberty the Old World denied. Who dares dispute
the claim? Who dares challenge the assertion? Time and events have
sanctioned it; age has but strengthened it. And to-day, holding as
tenaciously the same principles of truth and justice, the party that,
among the parties of this Republic, alone stands as the synonym of
freedom is the Republican party.

None dare gainsay it. And, among the growing multitudes in this broad
land of ours, none know this better than ten millions of Afro-Americans
who but for its strong arm of power might still be suffering from "Man's
inhumanity to man."

Forget it? The mightiest draughts from Lethe's stream could not blot
from the remembrance of the race the deed of that Republican leader
enthroned upon the seat of government, the deed of the immortal Lincoln,
whose birth we commemorate here to-night, the deed of that second
Abraham who, true to his name as the "father of the faithful," struck
the chains from the Negro's limbs and bade him stand forever free.

But did the great work stop there? No; the fast following amendments to
the Constitution show that the party of freedom never paused; and the
bond forged during the long years of struggle and riveted by
emancipation was indissolubly welded when that party crowned the
freedman with the glorious rights and privileges of citizenship. Ah,
what lamentations loud and long filled the land! What dire predictions
smote the nation's ear! What a multitude of evils imagination turned
loose like a horde of Furies! What a war of opinion raged 'twixt friends
and foes of the race that drew the first full breath of freedom! More
than three decades have passed. Have these dismal prophecies been
fulfilled? No race under the sun has been so patient under calumny,
under oppression, under mob violence; no race has ever shown itself so
free from resentment.

But it has been said the Negro was not worth the struggle. Not worth the
struggle when, at every call to arms in the nation's history, the black
man has nobly responded, whether slave or freeman? Not worth the
struggle when, in the Revolution, on Lake Erie with Perry, at Port
Hudson, at Millikens Bend, in that fearful crater at Petersburg, he shed
his blood freely in the nation's behalf? Not worth the struggle, when he
won his way from spade to epaulet in the defense of the nation's honor?
_The freedmen fathers were neither cowards nor traitors. Nor do the sons
disgrace their sires._

Who saved the Rough Riders from annihilation at Las Guasimas? Who
stormed with unparalleled bravery the heights at El Caney and swept
gallantly foremost in that magnificent charge up San Juan hill?
Comrades, leaders, onlookers--all with one voice have made reply: "The
Negro soldier." Aye; the race has proved its worth, and the whole
country, irrespective of party or section, owes it a debt, not only for
its heroic service on the battle-field in times of national peril, which
was its duty, but for its splendid self-control generally, under the
most harassing situations, under most inexcusable assaults.

No; the faith of the party of freedom in the Negro has not been
unfounded. In all these years the race has been steadily gaining wealth,
education, refinement, places of responsibility and power. It might have
done far more for the lasting good of all concerned, had it learned that
in all things the

    "... Heights are not gained by a single bound,
    But we built the ladder by which we rise,...
    And we mount to its summit round by round."

But the prophecies of the past are far behind us. The world has passed
its verdict on what has been. Mistakes must yield us profit as the
problems of the future confront us. We are to look forward with hope.
And in preparation for that future,

    "The riddling Sphynx puts dim things from our minds,
    And sets us to the questions at our doors."

As the Republican party and the Negro face the coming years, one
question is of equal moment to both. What shall be the mutual relations
in the future? Shall the party of freedom declare at an end its duty
toward the party it made men and citizens? On the other hand, shall the
Negro say: "Indebtedness ceased with our fathers; we are free to make
alliance where we will"?

In view of the blood shed so freely for Republican principles by the
Negro as slave and freeman; in view of the loyalty, the courage, the
patriotism, the strength, and the needs of the race; in view of this
country's prospective broadened domain and the millions of dusky wards
to be added to the nation o'er which the American eagle hovers to-day;
and in view of the principles that inhere in Republicanism, the party of
freedom should find but one answer: "It is and shall be our duty to view
you ever as men and citizens, to see that no chain of our forging
manacles you to lower planes, that no bar is thrown by us across your
pathway up the hill of progress, to help maintain your rights, to throw
the weight of our influence for fair treatment, for the side of law and
order and justice. The Republican party must not forget for a moment the
truth of the argument that Demosthenes once made against Philip with
such striking force,--"_All power is unstable that is founded on
injustice._" This party cannot afford to be less than just. The Negro
should not ask for more.

This duty laid upon itself on the one hand, it becomes incumbent upon
the Negro to reciprocate, and the reciprocation calls for his support of
the party. This should be a support, wise and open-eyed, born of
appreciation and intelligence. It should be a support, steadfast and
loyal, based upon faith in the party's motives and the knowledge that it
has stood and still stands for all that the Negro holds most dear. It
should be a support that frees itself from selfish leaders and ranting
demagogues, that puts aside all mere personal gain, and seeks the good
of the race as a whole that it, too, may be lifted up. And lastly, it
should be a support that looks for no reward but that which comes
because of true worth and ability.

Reciprocity becomes a mutual duty, for there are mutual needs. The
Negro's strength is not to be ignored by the party; but the race cannot
stand alone. It needs alliance with friendly power; and there is no
friend like the tried friend, no party for the freedman like the party
that stands upon the high, broad platform of freedom and human rights,
irrespective of race, or color, or previous condition.

But having said this, I would be false to the race and my own
convictions did I not pause to give the warning that, after all, neither
parties nor politics alone can save the Negro. He needs to make a new
start in his civil and political career. He must pay less attention to
politics and more to business, to industry, to education, to the
building up of a strong and sturdy manhood everywhere--to the
assimilation generally of all that goes to demand the world's respect
and consideration. He must lop off, as so many _incubi_, the
professional Negro office-seeker, the professional Negro office-holder,
and the Negro politician who aspires to lead the race, for the revenue
that is in it. The best men, the wisest, the most unselfish, and above
all, the men of the most profound integrity and uprightness, must take
the helm or retrogression will be the inevitable result. Politics
followed as an end has been the curse of the race. Under it problems
have multiplied, and under it the masses have remained longer than they
should in the lower stages of development. Only in the hands of men of
noble mold, and used only as a _means_ to an end, can politics
accomplish the highest good for all the race.

The Negro can keep all this in view and yet yield loyal support to the
party that set him free.

Let the party of freedom and the freedmen recognize and observe these
duties as reciprocal, and a force may be created, having its basis on
undying principles, that will pave the way for the ultimate success of
the highest aspirations of each--a force that will stretch southward and
westward bearing, wherever Old Glory floats, the promise to the
oppressed: Freedom, equality, prosperity. And though men may apostatize,
this mutual righteous cause shall live to sway for unnumbered years the
fortunes of this grand Republic, for the God who reared the continents
above the seas and peopled them with nations, who gave these nations
freedom of conscience and will, and who has watched their rise and fall
from the dawn of creation, still guides the destinies of races and of
parties, and standeth

    "... within the shadow,
    Keeping watch above his own."



_Surgeon-in-Chief, Frederick Douglass Hospital, Philadelphia, Pa._

[Note 26: From _Howard's American Magazine_.]

Those who are familiar with history will testify that the blacks were a
fundamental element in the civilized races of antiquity, as also of the
primitive races of southern Europe. In fact, all history is pregnant
with traces of the Negro element. The world will ever look with wonder
and amazement upon the marks of ancient culture in the valley of the
Nile, and we may continue to look as far back as records and
inscriptions lend us light, only to find the black man, above all
others, leading in the ancient arts and sciences.

History places the earliest civilization in Egypt. The ruling tribes
among the people were called the Hamites, the "sunburnt race," according
to Dr. Winchell. Says Professor J. Boughton: "The wanderings of these
people since prehistoric history began has not been confined to the
American continent. In Paleolithic times the black man roamed all over
the fairer portions of the Old World; Europe, as well as Asia and
Africa, acknowledged his sway. No white man had, so far, appeared to
dispute his authority in the vine-clad valleys of France or Germany, or
upon the classic hills of Greece or Rome. The black man preceded all
others, and carried Paleolithic culture to its very height."

The history of all the lands has been but the history of succeeding
races; more often, however, by fusion of different racial types and by
the mingling of various tribes and peoples, have been evolved new races,
superior to any of the original types. Greece and Rome, the study of
history will tell you, had their race and social problems.
Inter-marriage at last settled the question. The ethnology of Spain
tells the same story. There is not a nation on the globe of pure ethnic
character. From the ethnic standpoint, the blood of the black race is
everywhere apparent. Ask the Frenchman, the Italian, the Spaniard,
whence comes his dark skin and hair; it surely does not come from the
Aryan blonde. Ethnology alone can give the answer. In considering the
future of our racial problems, it is fitting that we shall recall these
facts of history to know the Negro's past place in the world's annals.

* * * * *

American slavery, the most accursed institution the world has ever
known, did more to degrade the master than the slave, a truth most often
overlooked. It is here I take strong exception to the literal
interpretation of the injunction, "Whosoever will smite thee on the
right cheek, turn to him the other also," and "If any man take away thy
coat, let him have thy cloak also." Not so; but, on the contrary, we
should resist evil with our energy. The tyrant who smites you on one
cheek is only made more of a brute by permitting him to continue in the
practise by smiting you on the other. It is our moral duty, therefore,
to resist him, and not more for our own sake than for his. The
brutalizing influence of slavery upon the master class is the curse of
the Southern States to-day, and has much more to do with the
difficulties of solving the race problems than does the ignorance of the
blacks. The Government is not guiltless in this matter of interpretation
of the scriptural injunction. In the matter of State rights, Southern
election laws, and mob violence, our Government has turned the other
cheek also. What has been the result? Why the tyrants continue to become
more and more brutal, until they are not only running black men out, but
they have recently, at the muzzle of the shot gun, forced their own kith
and kin, men to the manor born, to leave the States. I have no hesitancy
in proclaiming that this brutality is a legacy left us by slavery,
against which we have to contend, making itself felt in the organized
mob and in disregard of constituted authority.

In these days of imperialism and territorial expansion, when there is,
likewise, much discussion on the subject of inferior races, it is
fitting that we should place ourselves aright upon the question of
suffrage and rights of franchise. William Lloyd Garrison, Jr., says:
"Whosoever laments the scope of suffrage, and talks of disfranchising
men on account of ignorance or poverty, has as little comprehension of
the meaning of self-government as a blind man has of the colors of the
rainbow. I declare my belief that we are suffering, not from a too
extended ballot, but from one too limited and unrepresentative. We
enunciate a principle of government, and then deny it in practise. If
experience has established anything, it is that the interest of one
class is never safe in the hands of another. There is no class so poor
or ignorant in a republic that it does not know its own suffering and
needs better than the wealthy or educated classes. By the rule of
justice, it has the same right precisely to give it legal expression.
That expression is bound to come, and it is wiser to have it come
through the ballot-box than through mobs and violence, born of a feeling
of despair and misery." Those States in the South which are passing laws
restricting suffrage, to promote the selfish ends of a class, are sowing
to the wind and will surely reap the whirlwind. In a republican
government, supposed to be ruled by the popular vote, a people's liberty
has practically been taken when the right to vote is denied them. In
such States, personal liberty, the right to testify in courts of law,
the right to hold, buy, and sell real estate, and, in fact, all other
rights, become mere privileges, held at the option of others. People are
no longer free when the rights of franchise have been annulled. Slavery
is truly re-enacted in those States which have succeeded in
disfranchising the Negro.

I have neither patience nor respect for those among us who are truckling
to the prejudice of our enemies by giving credence to the lie that the
ballot was placed in the black man's hand too soon. Lowell was right
when he said: "The right to vote makes a safety-valve of every voter,
and the best way to teach a man to vote is to give him a chance to
practise. It is cheaper in the long run to lift men up than to hold them
down; the ballot in their hands is less dangerous to society than a
sense of wrong in their heads." The so-called Negro domination of the
reconstruction period has no record of misrule such as exists in most of
the Southern States to-day. It is our privilege (an oppressed people,
who know by bitter experience whereof we speak) to give this government
timely warnings as to its duties toward the inhabitants of our newly
acquired territory.

I have no confidence in the Government's ability to ameliorate the race
conflicts of the South through the course recently outlined by the
President of this nation in speeches of flattery and encomiums upon the
dead and living heroes of the Southern Confederacy. This policy of
conciliation was repeatedly attempted before the war, with the results
that the slave influence continued to spread further north and west. It
was proved then, as it ever shall be, that no nation can succeed by
making a compact with the devil. One must tremble for this country's
future when they read upon the statute-books of the Southern States
these diabolical laws against social purity, against the civil and
political rights of our citizens. It is hoped that the coming Congress
will rise to a sense of our impending danger, and see to it that the
strong arm of the Government is brought forward to protect each and
every citizen in his civil and political rights. Until this is done, we
are by no means prepared to add nine millions more of a dark race to
those with which we now have to deal. There are those already high in
the nation's council who predict that the result of our present war[27]
will be a _curse_ instead of a _blessing_, that the nation's incapacity
to deal justly with our recently liberated slaves proves our inability
to deal with nine millions more of untutored and so-called inferior

[Note 27: War with Spain.]

* * * * *

The final conclusion of the whole matter may be forecasted thus: The
Negro element in this country is permanent and indestructible. So great
are the numbers of the Negroes, and so intimate their relations with the
white people, that it is safe to say without fear of contradiction that
the status of the Negro element will determine in a large degree the
future of the white. Let this truth once be learned. Let the thoughtful
people of the nation cease trying to deceive themselves. The inevitable
teachings of history will not be reversed. The blood of these varied
races will finally be mingled until race distinctions will ultimately be
obliterated. The docile nature of the Negro race, his intimate domestic
and other relations with the whites, make this conclusion inevitable.
The two races are complements of each other and cannot be separated.



_Member of Congress from North Carolina_

[Note 28: Extracts from a speech delivered in the House of
Representatives, January 29, 1901.]

_Mr. Chairman:_

I want to enter a plea for the colored man, the colored woman, the
colored boy, and the colored girl of this country. I would not thus
digress from the question at issue and detain the House in a discussion
of the interests of this particular people at this time but for the
constant and the persistent efforts of certain gentlemen upon this floor
to mold and rivet public sentiment against us as a people, and to lose
no opportunity to hold up the unfortunate few, who commit crimes and
depredations and lead lives of infamy and shame, as other races do, as
fair specimens of representatives of the entire colored race. And at no
time, perhaps, during the 56th Congress were these charges and
countercharges, containing, as they do, slanderous statements, more
persistently magnified and pressed upon the attention of the nation than
during the consideration of the recent reapportionment bill, which is
now a law. As stated some days ago on this floor by me, I then sought
diligently to obtain an opportunity to answer some of the statements
made by gentlemen from different States, but the privilege was denied
me; and I therefore must embrace this opportunity to say, out of season,
perhaps, that which I was not permitted to say in season.

In the catalogue of members of Congress in this House perhaps none have
been more persistent in their determination to bring the black man into
disrepute and, with a labored effort, to show that he was unworthy of
the right of citizenship than my colleague from North Carolina, Mr.
Kitchin. During the first session of this Congress, while the
Constitutional amendment was pending in North Carolina, he labored long
and hard to show that the white race was at all times and under all
circumstances superior to the Negro by inheritance if not otherwise, and
the excuse for his party supporting that amendment, which has since been
adopted, was that an illiterate Negro was unfit to participate in making
the laws of a sovereign State and the administration and execution of
them; but an illiterate white man living by his side, with no more or
perhaps not as much property, with no more exalted character, no higher
thoughts of civilization, no more knowledge of the handicraft of
government, had by birth, because he was white, inherited some peculiar
qualification, clear, I presume, only in the mind of the gentleman who
endeavored to impress it upon others, that entitled him to vote, though
he knew nothing whatever of letters. It is true, in my opinion, that men
brood over things at times which they would have exist until they delude
themselves and actually, sometimes honestly, believe that such things do

I would like to call the gentleman's attention to the fact that the
Constitution of the United States forbids the granting of any title of
nobility to any citizen thereof, and while it does not in letters forbid
the inheritance of this superior caste, I believe in the fertile
imagination of the gentleman promulgating it, his position is at least
in conflict with the spirit of that organic law of the land. He insists
and, I believe, has introduced a resolution in this House for the repeal
of the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution.

* * * * *

It would be unfair, however, for me to leave the inference upon the
minds of those who hear me that all of the white people of the State of
North Carolina hold views with Mr. Kitchin and think as he does. Thank
God there are many noble exceptions to the example he sets, that, too,
in the Democratic party; men who have never been afraid that one
uneducated, poor, depressed Negro could put to flight and chase into
degradation two educated, wealthy, thrifty white men. There never has
been, nor ever will be, any Negro domination in that State, and no one
knows it any better than the Democratic party. It is a convenient howl,
however, often resorted to in order to consummate a diabolical purpose
by scaring the weak and gullible whites into support of measures and men
suitable to the demagogue and the ambitious office-seeker, whose craving
for office overshadows and puts to flight all other considerations, fair
or unfair.

As I stated on a former occasion, this young statesman has ample time to
learn better and more useful knowledge than he has exhibited in many of
his speeches upon this floor, and I again plead for him the statute of
youth for the wild and spasmodic notions which he has endeavored to
rivet upon his colleagues and this country. But I regret that Mr.
Kitchin is not alone upon this floor in these peculiar notions advanced.
I refer to another young member of Congress, hailing from the State of
Alabama, Mr. Underwood.

* * * * *

It is an undisputed fact that the Negro vote in the State of Alabama, as
well as most of the other Southern States, has been effectively
suppressed, either one way or the other--in some instances by
constitutional amendment and State legislation, in others by
cold-blooded fraud and intimidation, but whatever the method pursued, it
is not denied, but frankly admitted in the speeches in this House, that
the black vote has been eliminated to a large extent. Then, when some of
us insist that the plain letter of the Constitution of the United
States, which all of us have sworn to support, should be carried out, as
expressed in the second section of the fourteenth amendment thereof.

That section makes the duty of every member of Congress plain, and yet
the gentleman from Alabama [Mr. Underwood] says that the attempt to
enforce this section of the organic law is the throwing down of
fire-brands, and notifies the world that this attempt to execute the
highest law of the land will be retaliated by the South, and the
inference is that the Negro will be even more severely punished than
the horrors through which he has already come.

Let me make it plain: The divine law, as well as most of the State laws,
says, in substance: "He that sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his
blood be shed." A highwayman commits murder, and when the officers of
the law undertake to arrest, try, and punish him commensurate with the
enormity of his crime, he straightens himself up to his full height and
defiantly says to them: "Let me alone; I will not be arrested, I will
not be tried, I'll have none of the execution of your laws, and in the
event you attempt to execute your laws upon me, I will see to it many
more men, women, or children are murdered."

Here's the plain letter of the Constitution, the plain, simple, sworn
duty of every member of Congress; yet these gentlemen from the South say
"Yes, we have violated your Constitution of the nation; we regarded it
as a local necessity; and now, if you undertake to punish us as the
Constitution prescribes, we will see to it that our former deeds of
disloyalty to that instrument, our former acts of disfranchisement and
opposition to the highest law of the land will be repeated manifoldly."

Not content with all that has been done to the black man, not because of
any deeds that he has done, Mr. Underwood advances the startling
information that these people have been thrust upon the whites of the
South, forgetting, perhaps, the horrors of the slave-trade, the
unspeakable horrors of the transit from the shores of Africa by means of
the middle passage to the American clime; the enforced bondage of the
blacks and their descendants for two and a half centuries in the United
States. Now, for the first time perhaps in the history of our lives, the
information comes that these poor, helpless, and in the main inoffensive
people were thrust upon our Southern brethren.

* * * * *

If the gentleman to whom I have referred will pardon me, I would like to
advance the statement that the musty records of 1868, filed away in the
archives of Southern capitols, as to what the Negro was thirty-two years
ago, is not a proper standard by which the Negro living on the threshold
of the twentieth century should be measured. Since that time we have
reduced the illiteracy of the race at least 45 per cent. We have written
and published near 500 books. We have nearly 300 newspapers, 3 of which
are dailies. We have now in practise over 2,000 lawyers and a
corresponding number of doctors. We have accumulated over $12,000,000
worth of school property and about $40,000,000 worth of church property.
We have about 140,000 farms and homes, valued at in the neighborhood of
$750,000,000, and personal property valued at about $170,000,000. We
have raised about $11,000,000 for educational purposes, and the property
per capita for every colored man, woman, and child in the United States
is estimated at $75.

We are operating successfully several banks, commercial enterprises
among our people in the Southland, including 1 silk-mill and 1
cotton-factory. We have 32,000 teachers in the schools of the country;
we have built, with the aid of our friends, about 20,000 churches, and
support 7 colleges, 17 academies, 50 high schools, 5 law schools, 5
medical schools, and 25 theological seminaries. We have over 600,000
acres of land in the South alone. The cotton produced, mainly by black
labor, has increased from 4,669,770 bales in 1860 to 11,235,000 in 1899.
All this we have done under the most adverse circumstances. We have done
it in the face of lynching, burning at the stake, with the humiliation
of "Jim Crow" cars, the disfranchisement of our male citizens, slander
and degradation of our women, with the factories closed against us, no
Negro permitted to be conductor on the railway-cars, whether run through
the streets of our cities or across the prairies of our great country,
no Negro permitted to run as engineer on a locomotive, most of the mines
closed against us. Labor-unions--carpenters, painters, brick-masons,
machinists, hackmen, and those supplying nearly every conceivable
avocation for livelihood have banded themselves together to better their
condition, but, with few exceptions, the black face has been left out.
The Negroes are seldom employed in our mercantile stores. At this we do
not wonder. Some day we hope to have them employed in our own stores.
With all these odds against us, we are forging our way ahead, slowly,
perhaps, but surely. You tie us and then taunt us for a lack of bravery,
but one day we will break the bonds. You may use our labor for two and a
half centuries and then taunt us for our poverty, but let me remind you
we will not always remain poor. You may withhold even the knowledge of
how to read God's word and learn the way from earth to glory and then
taunt us for our ignorance, but we would remind you that there is plenty
of room at the top, and we are climbing.

After enforced debauchery, with the many kindred horrors incident to
slavery, it comes with ill grace from the perpetrators of these deeds to
hold up the shortcomings of some of our race to ridicule and scorn.

"The new man, the slave who has grown out of the ashes of thirty-five
years ago, is inducted into the political and social system, cast into
the arena of manhood, where he constitutes a new element and becomes a
competitor for all its emoluments. He is put upon trial to test his
ability to be counted worthy of freedom, worthy of the elective
franchise; and after thirty-five years of struggling against almost
insurmountable odds, under conditions but little removed from slavery
itself, he asks a fair and just judgment, not of those whose prejudice
has endeavored to forestall, to frustrate his every forward movement,
rather those who have lent a helping hand, that he might demonstrate the
truth of 'the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man.'"

* * * * *

Now, Mr. Chairman, before concluding my remarks I want to submit a brief
recipe for the solution of the so-called American Negro problem. He asks
no special favors, but simply demands that he be given the same chance
for existence, for earning a livelihood, for raising himself in the
scales of manhood and womanhood that are accorded to kindred
nationalities. Treat him as a man; go into his home and learn of his
social conditions; learn of his cares, his troubles, and his hopes for
the future; gain his confidence; open the doors of industry to him; let
the word "Negro," "colored," and "black" be stricken from all the
organizations enumerated in the federation of labor.

Help him to overcome his weaknesses, punish the crime-committing class
by the courts of the land, measure the standard of the race by its best
material, cease to mold prejudicial and unjust public sentiment against
him, and my word for it, he will learn to support, hold up the hands of,
and join in with that political party, that institution, whether secular
or religious, in every community where he lives, which is destined to do
the greatest good for the greatest number. Obliterate race hatred, party
prejudice, and help us to achieve nobler ends, greater results, and
become more satisfactory citizens to our brother in white.

This, Mr. Chairman, is perhaps the Negroes' temporary farewell to the
American Congress; but let me say, Ph[oe]nix-like he will rise up some
day and come again. These parting words are in behalf of an outraged,
heart-broken, bruised, and bleeding, but God-fearing people, faithful,
industrious, loyal people--rising people, full of potential force.

Mr. Chairman, in the trial of Lord Bacon, when the court disturbed the
counsel for the defendant, Sir Walter Raleigh raised himself up to his
full height and, addressing the court, said:

    "Sir, I am pleading for the life of a human being."

The only apology that I have to make for the earnestness with which I
have spoken is that I am pleading for the life, the liberty, the future
happiness, and manhood-suffrage for one-eight of the entire population
of the United States.



_Bishop A. M. E. Church_

[Note 29: Delivered at Cape Town, South Africa, February 1902.]

The land once lying in darkness, but now fast coming to the light, is
claiming the best thought and the best energies of the civilized world.

Africa, on account of a lack of coast indentations, has been the last
among the continents to be penetrated by the beneficent influence of
commerce; and this largely accounts for that long obscurity, during
which it was given the name, the "Dark Continent."

Its situation beneath the line of the Equator has had also something to
do with staying the onward march of civilization from without. The world
learned first to think only of the enervating influence of a torrid sun
upon the inhabitants of the great continent, and this was not inviting
to immigration.

Nations have reached their highest and best development, not by
isolation, but by taking advantage of whatever of good they found among
others. But as the years and centuries have passed, it has dawned upon
the world that Africa enjoys the unique distinction of occupying a place
in three zones, and hence offering the largest variety of climatic
influences that are favorable to life and health.

Abounding in mineral wealth, with millions of acres suitable for
agriculture, and with immense forests of valuable wood; with palm oil,
ivory, and other desirable products, Africa is now being sought by the
world's capital, and is giving rich rewards to combined capital and

But what of her peoples? When as a Christian Church we speak of the
redemption of Africa, we do not refer to her material resources chiefly,
though these are a means to an end. The one supreme thought with us is,
how the millions of her inhabitants may be reached by the light of the
gospel and saved. In their isolated condition, the people have for long
centuries become the victims of customs and habits not in keeping with
the better life which is the result only of Christian civilization. The
customs and habits formed and fixed by centuries cannot be thoroughly
changed by a few years of effort. The success already attained by
missionary enterprise in Africa is not to be measured by the years of
effort it has cost, nor by the amount of money expended. Missionary
records from other fields will fully justify this statement. In all such
work we may expect to have the exemplification of nature's course,
"first the blade, then the ear; after that, the full corn in the ear."

One hundred and sixty-six years have passed since the Moravians, as
pioneer Protestant missionaries began work on the Gold Coast. From 1736
to 1832, much effort was expended by a number of societies on the West
Coast, during which more or less progress was made, accompanied with no
little sacrifice, and a large death-roll of missionaries. But, at this
time the missionary field is no longer confined to any particular
section of Africa. The missionary has followed in the wake of the
explorer and planted his stations. In South Africa the work is most
hopeful. In West Africa, the foothold is permanent; in Central Africa
the work proceeds, and is not likely to stop until every tribe shall
read the story of the Cross in his own dialect.

Those missionaries who have studied the native tongues--of which there
are many--and translated the Bible in the vernacular of various tribes,
have done a work that is of inestimable value. The difficulty of
language, is, after all, the greatest obstacle in evangelistic progress
in Africa. If there were but one tongue to contend with, the work of the
Missionary would be comparatively easy; but there are many tongues. In
my own district in South Africa, we have the Bible in three native
dialects, namely: the Zulu, Bechauna, and the so-called Kaffir. Besides
these, we have the Dutch as well as the English Bible.

So much has been accomplished by missionaries, and at so great a
sacrifice, that it seems quite out of place to suggest a criticism or
complaint, and yet all the Christian workers should be ready to receive
any suggestion that would help them to achieve better results.

In carrying the Gospel to an unenlightened people, there is a strong
temptation to emphasize unduly the commercial element that very
naturally accompanies it. Civilization and evangelization must go hand
in hand, but the greater importance should always be given to the work
of evangelization. In our highest civilization are to be found
objectionable and hurtful elements, and these are likely to be the first
to intrude themselves upon an unsuspecting people.

It is ever to be regretted, that the civilization that opened the way
for the missionary, also gave an opportunity for the introduction of
evils, among which none have wrought greater harm than the introduction
of alcoholic beverages.

To what extent, anyone directly connected with Missionary enterprise has
ever been responsible for such a sad result, we do not know; but it does
seem evident that the idea of pecuniary gain has not always been kept
away from the Missionary field. The acquisition of lands for other than
ecclesiastical purposes, and traffic in native products, offer a great
temptation to the Missionary, some of whom have availed themselves of
these advantages, to the detriment of their legitimate work. It is not
always an easy thing for one to become so forgetful of himself in his
efforts to bless others as to be in his life, and work a perfect
exemplar of the Divine Master, whose Kingdom he seeks to promote, but
whose Kingdom is not of this world.

Professor Drummond, in a speech in 1888, among other important
statements upon foreign missionary works, made the following: "I was
taught to believe that the essential to a missionary was strong faith. I
have since learned that it is more essential for him to have strong
love. I was taught, out there in the missionary field, that he needed to
have great knowledge. I have learned that, more than knowledge even, is
required personal character. I have met men in mission fields in
different parts of the world who could make zealous addresses, at
evangelistic meetings at home, who left for their fields of labor, laden
with testimonials from churches and Sunday-schools, but who became
utterly demoralized within a year's time, because they had not learned
that love is a greater thing than faith. That is a neglected part of a
Missionary's education, it seems to me, and yet it is a most essential
one. I would say that the thing to be certain of in picking out a man
for such a field as Africa, where the strain upon a man's character is
tremendous, and the strain upon his spiritual life owing to the
isolation, is more tremendous, that we must be sure that we are sending
a man of character and heart; morally sound to the core, with a large
and brotherly sympathy for the native." These are the words of Professor
Drummond, and in my opinion he spoke the exact truth; and in making this
quotation, I am glad that it is from such an eminent authority; one who
could have no sinister motives for such utterances. He does not arraign
the missionaries as a whole but frankly states some thing that he had
learned from observation.

The native African, as a rule, is virtuous and honest. The uncivilized
tribes, in striving for the mastery among themselves, commit many acts
that would not be approved by the rules governing modern warfare: deeds
of cruelty, that made the need of the Gospel among them imperative.
But, in their individual lives, free from the exciting influence of war
they have rules and customs governing their home life that are entirely
in keeping with the highest state of Christian civilization. To them,
polygamy is not a sinful practise. Without light beyond that which comes
from their own fireside, they do not see the necessity of breaking away
from a practise that is peculiar to mankind in the earliest stages of
social life. But they hold tenaciously to the rule, that all men and all
women among them must respect the matrimonial customs by which they are
governed. These customs cannot be violated with impunity, and the
penalty for such violations is often death. They are disposed to be true
to their professions, and faithful in what they believe. When they are
persuaded that there is a better life, and induced to embrace it, they
bring with them their characteristic sincerity. How great, then, is the
need of missionaries who will not, by the deplorable example set by
their own unfaithfulness and insincerity, lower the standard of the

The spirit which impels one to work in the foreign field generally
leaves him without a choice as to post of duty. The first thought to him
is: "Lord what wilt Thou have me to do?" And hence the missionary goes
forth without questioning the race variety among which his lot should be
cast. But in this day of systematic method even in Christian effort, and
when missionaries from every race variety are being prepared for the
work, I think it would not be out of place to maintain a closer respect
for the laws of adaptation and fitness.

* * * * *

The religious field, and especially the great continent of Africa, seems
to offer the greatest opportunity for the man of color to do his best
work. As we stand in the open door of a new century, God is calling us
to new duties and responsibilities. The preparation for this work was
through a school of hard experiences, but perhaps the trials were no
harder than those which had been borne by others. We waited long for the
call to take our place among other agencies for the redemption of the
world; and now that it has come, we have no time nor disposition to
brood over past experiences. Our business is now with the exacting
present, and the portentious future, and we must adjust ourselves to the
new situation.

God is calling men of every race and clime to take a part in the world's
redemption and face the responsibilities that come with the unfolding
years. If we are found ready and willing to take our place, then may we
claim the promise of His presence and help: but, if we are found to be
unwilling, and unworthy, the call may not come to us again.

    "Stretch forth thy hand; Jehovah bids thee come
    And claim the promise; thou hast had thy doom,
    If forth in sorrow, weeping, thou hast gone,
    Rejoicing to thy God thou shalt return.

    "Stretch forth thy hand, no longer doubt, arise;
    Look! See the 'signo' in the vaulted skies!
    Greet the new century with faith sublime,
    For God is calling now, this is thy time.

    "Stretch forth thy hand to God, the night is past;
    The morning cometh, thou art free at last.
    No brigands draw thee from thy peaceful home,
    But messengers of love to greet thee come.

    "Stretch forth thy hand to kindred o'er the sea;
    Our cause is one, and brothers still are we.
    Bone of our bone, one destiny we claim;
    Flesh of our flesh, thy God and ours the same.

    "Stretch forth thy hand: "What tho' the heathen rage"
    And fiends of darkness all their wrath engage.
    The hand of God still writes upon the wall,
    "Thy days are numbered; all the proud shall fall."

    "Stretch forth thy hand, nor yet in terror flee;
    Thick darkness but a swaddling-band shall be
    The waves and billows which thy way oppose
    Shall in their bosom bury all thy foes.

    "Stretch forth thy hand to God, 'tis not for thee
    To question aught, nor all his purpose see.
    The hand that led thee through the dreary night
    Does not thy counsel need when comes the light.

    "Stretch forth thy hand; stretch forth thy hand to God;
    Nor falter thou, nor stumble at His word.
    And if in service thou shalt faithful be,
    His promise of salvation thou shalt see."



FANNY MIRIAM JACKSON COPPIN, _the first Negro woman in America to
graduate from college--Oberlin, 1865. From 1837 to 1902, teacher and
principal of the Institute for Colored Youth in Philadelphia._

[Note 30: Delivered at a fair in Philadelphia, held in the interest
of the _Christian Recorder_.]

The great lesson to be taught by this Fair is the value of co-operative
effort to make our cents dollars, and to show us what help there is for
ourselves in ourselves. That the colored people of this country have
enough money to materially alter their financial condition, was clearly
demonstrated by the millions of dollars deposited in the Freedmen's
Bank; that they have the good sense, and the unanimity to use this
power, are now proved by this industrial exhibition and fair.

It strikes me that much of the recent talk about the exodus has
proceeded upon the high-handed assumption that, owing largely to the
credit system of the South, the colored people there are forced to the
alternative, to "curse God, and die," or else "go West." Not a bit of
it. The people of the South, it is true, cannot at this time produce
hundreds of dollars, but they have millions of pennies; and millions of
pennies make tens of thousands of dollars. By clubbing together and
lumping their pennies, a fund might be raised in the cities of the
South that the poorer classes might fall back upon while their crops are
growing; or else, by the opening of co-operative stores, become their
own creditors and so effectually rid themselves of their merciless
extortioners. "Oh, they won't do anything; you can't get them united on
anything!" is frequently expressed. The best way for a man to prove that
he can do a thing is to do it, and that is what we have shown we can do.
This Fair, participated in by twenty four States in the Union, and
gotten up for a purpose which is of no pecuniary benefit to those
concerned in it, effectually silences all slanders about "we won't or we
can't do," and teaches its own instructive and greatly needed lessons of
self-help,--the best help that any man can have, next to God's.

Those in charge, who have completed the arrangement of the Fair, have
studiously avoided preceding it with noisy and demonstrative babblings,
which are so often the vapid precursors of promises as empty as those
who make them; therefore, in some quarters, our Fair has been
overlooked. It is not, we think, a presumptuous interpretation of this
great movement, to say, that the voice of God now seems to utter "Speak
to the people that they go forward." "Go forward" in what respect? Teach
the millions of poor colored laborers of the South how much power they
have in themselves, by co-operation of effort, and by a combination of
their small means, to change the despairing poverty which now drives
them from their homes, and makes them a millstone around the neck of any
community, South or West. Secondly, that we shall go forward in asking
to enter the same employments which other people enter. Within the past
ten years we have made almost no advance in getting our youth into
industrial and business occupations. It is just as hard for instance, to
get a boy into a printing-office now as it was ten years ago. It is
simply astonishing when we consider how many of the common vocations of
life colored people are shut out of. Colored men are not admitted to the
printers' trade-union, nor, with very rare exceptions are they employed
in any city of the United States in a paid capacity as printers or
writers; one of the rare exceptions being the employment of H. Price
Williams, on the _Sunday Press_ of this city. We are not employed as
salesmen or pharmacists, or saleswomen, or bank clerks, or merchants'
clerks, or tradesmen, or mechanics, or telegraph operators, or to any
degree as State or government officials, and I could keep on with the
string of "ors" until to-morrow morning, but the patience of an audience
has its limit.

Slavery made us poor, and its gloomy, malicious shadow tends to keep us
so. I beg to say, kind hearers, that this is not spoken in a spirit of
recrimination. We have no quarrel with our fate, and we leave your
Christianity to yourselves. Our faith is firmly fixed in that "Eternal
Providence," that in its own good time will "justify the ways of God to
man." But, believing that to get the right men into the right places is
a "consummation most devoutly to be wished," it is a matter of serious
concern to us to see our youth with just as decided diversity of talent
as any other people, herded together into but three or four occupations.

It is cruel to make a teacher or a preacher of a man who ought to be a
printer or a blacksmith, and that is exactly the condition we are now
obliged to submit to. The greatest advance that has been made since the
War has been effected by political parties, and it is precisely the
political positions that we think it least desirable our youth should
fill. We have our choice of the professions, it is true, but, as we have
not been endowed with an overwhelming abundance of brains, it is not
probable that we can contribute to the bar a great lawyer except once in
a great while. The same may be said of medicine; nor are we able to tide
over the "starving time," between the reception of a diploma and the
time that a man's profession becomes a paying one.

Being determined to know whether this industrial and business ostracism
lay in ourselves or "in our stars," we have from time to time, knocked,
shaken, and kicked, at these closed doors of employment. A cold,
metallic voice from within replies, "We do not employ colored people."
Ours not to make reply, ours not to question why. Thank heaven, we are
not obliged to do and die; having the preference to do or die, we
naturally prefer to do.

But we cannot help wondering if some ignorant or faithless steward of
God's work and God's money hasn't blundered. It seems necessary that we
should make known to the good men and women who are so solicitous about
our souls, and our minds, that we haven't quite got rid of our bodies
yet, and until we do, we must feed and clothe them; and this attitude of
keeping us out of work forces us back upon charity.

That distinguished thinker, Mr. Henry C. Carey, in his valuable works on
political economy, has shown by the truthful and forceful logic of
history, that the elevation of all peoples to a higher moral and
intellectual plane, and to a fuller investiture of their civil rights,
has always steadily kept pace with the improvement in their physical
condition. Therefore we feel that resolutely and in unmistakable
language, yet in the dignity of moderation, we should strive to make
known to all men the justice of our claims to the same employments as
other's under the same conditions. We do not ask that anyone of our
people shall be put into a position because he is a colored person, but
we do most emphatically ask that he shall not be kept out of a position
because he is a colored person. "An open field and no favors" is all
that is requested. The time was when to put a colored girl or boy behind
a counter would have been to decrease custom; it would have been a tax
upon the employer, and a charity that we were too proud to accept; but
public sentiment has changed. I am satisfied that the employment of a
colored clerk or a colored saleswoman wouldn't even be a "nine days'
wonder." It is easy of accomplishment, and yet it is not. To thoughtless
and headstrong people who meet duty with impertinent dictation I do not
now address myself; but to those who wish the most gracious of all
blessings, a fuller enlightment as to their duty,--to those I beg to
say, think of what is suggested in this appeal.



_Bishop of the A.M.E. Church in Georgia_

[Note 31: From "The Negro and the White Man," 1897.]

Providence, in wisdom, has decreed that the lot of the Negro should be
cast with the white people of America. Condemn as we may the means
through which we were brought here, recount as we may the suffering
through which, as a race, we passed in the years of slavery, yet the
fact remains that today our condition is far in advance of that of the
Negroes who have never left their native Africa. We are planted in the
midst of the highest civilization mankind has ever known, and are
rapidly advancing in knowledge, property, and moral enlightenment. We
might, with all reason, thank God even for slavery, if this were the
only means through which we could arrive at our present progress and

We should indeed count ourselves blest if our white brethren would
always extend to us that kindness, justice, and sympathy which our
services to them in the past should inspire, and our dependence upon
them as the more enlightened and wealthy race should prompt them to

Why should there be prejudice and dislike on the part of the white man
to his colored brother? Is it because he was once a slave, and a slave
must forever wear the marks of degradation? Is there no effacement for
the stigma of slavery--no erasement for this blot of shame? Will our
white brother not remember that it was his hand that forged the links of
that chain and that riveted them around the necks of the people who had
roved for thousands of years in the unrestrained liberty of the
boundless forests in far-away Africa? As well might the seducer blacken
the name and reputation of the fair and spotless maiden he has cruelly
and wantonly seduced. Go far enough back and it is more than probable
that you will find the taint of slavery in your line and its blot upon
your escutcheon. The proud Saxon became the slave to the Norman, and yet
to-day millions are proud to be called Anglo-Saxons.

Will our white brother refuse us his cordial fellowship because of our
ignorance? Ignorance is indeed a great evil and hindrance. The
enlightened and refined cannot find fellowship with the ignorant, the
benighted, the untutored. If this be the line of demarkation, we can and
will remove it. No people ever made more heroic efforts to rise from
ignorance to enlightenment. Forty-three per cent. of the Negro race can
read and write, and with time we can bring our race up to a high degree
of civilization. We are determined, by the help of Providence, and the
strength of our own right arms, to educate our people until the reproach
of ignorance can no longer be brought against us. When we do, will our
white brothers accord that respect which is the due of intelligence and

Does our white brother look with disdain upon us because we are not
cleanly and neat? It is true that the masses of our race have not shown
that regard for personal cleanliness and nicety of dress, which a
wealthy and educated people have the means and the time for. Our people
by the exigencies of their lot, have had to toil and toil in menial
places, the places where drudgery was demanded and where contact with
dust and filth was necessary to the accomplishment of their work. But
even this can be remedied, and cleanliness and neatness can be made a
part of the Negro's education until he can present, as thousands of his
race are now doing, a creditable appearance. Will improvement along
these lines help us to gain the esteem and respectful consideration of
our white brothers? If so, the time is not far distant when this barrier
will be removed. Education will help solve this difficulty as it does
all others, and give to our race that touch of refinement which insures
physical as well as mental soundness.--_mens sana in corpore sano._

But is our moral condition the true reason of our ostracism? Are we
remanded to the back seats and ever held in social dishonor because we
are morally unclean? Would that we could reply by a denial of the
allegation and rightly claim that purity which would be at the
foundation of all respectable social life. But here we ask the
charitable judgment of our white brethren, and point them to the heroic
efforts we have made and are making for the moral elevation of our race.
Even a superficial glance at the social side of the Negro's life will
convince the unprejudiced that progress is being made among the better
classes of our people toward virtuous living. Chastity is being urged
everywhere in the school house, and the church, and the home, for our
women, and honesty and integrity for our men. We can and will lift the
shadow of immorality from the great masses of our race, and demonstrate
to the whole world what religion and education can do for a people. We
are doing it. Among the thoroughly cultured and rightly trained of our
women, virtue is as sacred as life, and among our men of similar
advantages, honor and integrity are prized as highly as among any people
on the globe.

Is our poverty the barrier that divides us from a closer fellowship with
our white brethren? Would wealth cure all the evils of our condition,
and give us the cordial recognition we ask from them? If so, we can
remove even this barrier. Our labor has already created much of the
wealth of the South, and it only needs intelligence to turn it into our
own coffers and make it the possession of our own people. Among the
whites money seems to be the _sesame_ that opens the doors to social
recognition, and converts the shoddy into a man of influence and rank.
Barney Barnato, a London Jew, who began life with a trained donkey,
became at length the "South African diamond king," and then all London
paid homage to this despised son of a hated race. Would money thus
convert our despised people into honorable citizens, give them kindly
recognition at the hands of our white neighbors, and take from them the
stigma which has so long marked them with dishonor and shame? If so, we
can hope to secure even this coveted prize, and claim like Barney
Barnato the respect of mankind.

But if it is none of these things that doom us to ostracism and
degradation, as a people, I ask finally is it our _color_? Alas, if it
be this, we can do nothing to remove the line of separation, unless it
be to wait the slow process of amalgamation which despite our efforts,
the white people of this country seem bound to consummate. If we knew of
any chemical preparation by which we could change the color of our skins
and straighten our hair we might hope to bring about the desired
consummation at once, but alas, there is no catholicon for this ill, no
mystic concoction in all the pharmacies of earth to work this miracle of
color. We must fold our hands in despair and submit to our fate with
heavy hearts.

To be serious, however, I would plead with our white brothers not to
despise us on account of our color. It is the inheritance we received
from God, and it could be no mark of shame or dishonor. "Can the leopard
change his spots or the Ethiopian his skin?" No disgrace can be attached
to physical characteristics which are the result of heredity, and cannot
be removed by any volition or effort. How cruel it is to visit upon the
colored man contempt and dishonor because of the hue of his skin, or the
curling peculiarity of his hair. Let him stand or fall upon his merit.
Let him be respected if he is worthy. Let him be despised if he is

We appeal to our white brothers to accord us simple justice. If we
deserve good treatment give it to us, and do not consider the question
of color any more than you would refuse kindness to a man because he is

All we ask is a fair show in the struggle of life. We have nothing but
the sentiment of kindness for our white brethren. Take us into your
confidence, trust us with responsibility, and above all, show us cordial
kindness. Thus will you link our people to you by the chains of love
which nothing can break, and we will march hand in hand up the steep
pathway of progress.



EDWARD WILMOT BLYDEN, _one of the greatest scholars of the race; native
of St. Thomas, West Indies. Secretary of State of the Republic of
Liberia; sent on diplomatic missions to the interior of Africa, and
reported proceedings before Royal Geographical Society; Minister
Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Liberia at the Court of St. James;
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs; Ambassador to France from
Liberia; Fellow of the American Philological Association; Honorary
Member Athaneum Club. Presented with medal by the Sultan of Turkey in
recognition of his services as Mohammedan Commissioner of Education._

[Note 32: Extracts from a speech made at a banquet given in his
honor by native Africans at Holborn, England, August 15, 1903.]

...Now as to our political relations, the gift of the African does not
lie in the direction of political aggrandizement. His sphere is the
church, the school, the farm, the workshop. With us, the tools are the
proper instruments of the man. This is why our country has been
partitioned among the political agencies of the world--the Japhetic
powers, for they can best do the work to be done in the interest of the
temporal as a basis for the spiritual advancement of humanity. The
African and the Jew are the spiritual races, and to them political
ascendence among the nations of the earth is not promised. It was M.
Renan, the great French agnostic, who said: "The fate of the Jewish
people was not to form a separate nationality; it is a race which always
cherishes a dream of something that transcends nations."

This truth will stand, though we cannot help sympathizing with the
intense and glowing patriotism of Mr. Zangwill as described in the
_Daily News_ the other day. Then as Africans we must sympathize with and
assist the powers that be, as ordained by God, whom He will hold to a
strict account for their proceedings. We cannot alter this arrangement,
whatever our opinion as to the rudeness and ruggedness of the methods by
which the human instruments have arrived at it.

It is a fact. Let us then, to the best of our ability, assist those to
whom has been committed rule over our country. Their task is not an easy
one. They are giving direction to a state of things that must largely
influence the future. As conscientious men, they are often in
perplexity. The actual rulers of British West African Colonies are
to-day an exceptional class of men. And in keeping with the spirit of
the times, and in the critical circumstances in which they labor, they
are doing their best under the guidance of a chief in this country of
large sympathies and a comprehensive grasp of situations.


_of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania_

[Note 33: Extract from an Address delivered before the Eureka
Literary Society at Penbrooke, Pa., December 16, 1904.]

_Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen:_

I am going to speak to you to-night of what your race has contributed
and is contributing to this great stream on whose bosom is borne the
freighted destiny of the human race, and whose currents wash every

More than two and one half centuries of progress and achievement, on
this continent alone, may well vaunt your pride and give you the
resolution which belongs to the children themselves of destiny.

Exult copiously, if you will, over the triumphal march of a great
material civilization, the marvelous expansion of your territory, your
wonderful development of hidden resources, your power and dignity at
home or abroad, but invite not, nor condone that spirit of listless
satiety, nor sink into that national egotism which lets the dagger steal
to the heart of the nation while your reveling conceals the presence of
the foe. For, remember, pomp and splendor, wealth, ease, and power's
pride and heraldry's boast once echoed

    "Through haughty Rome's imperial street."

If American citizenship contains a hope and promise, a wealth, a
blessing, and a content, aye! and immortality and just renown, it lives
to-day in hearts, and not in stones; it lives in feelings and not in
lands; it resides in aspirations and not in coffers, it lives in ideals
and not in vaunt and splendor.

It is yours to fulfill its duties; to meet well its responsibilities; it
is what your fathers builded out of heart and soul, out of love,
compassion, and generous fellowship, and not out of blood and brawn; it
is humanity's own; yours be it to study and repeat, if need be, the
sacrifices of those who planted its first seeds with the sword,
nourished them with their blood and suffering, and with wisdom, blessed
by Heaven, consecrated by heroic sacrifices and sanctified by prayer,
left it to you and to all of us, more wisely fashioned, more glittering
in its prospect and more alluring to our fancy than anything political
wisdom ever offered to human hope.

But in order to know and feel what there is of universal interest which
we have to do, what there is for humanity's glory and weal we have to
preserve; what is the task set to us, as our work in forwarding the
current of human life and liberty, we must look to the past, and learn
what fundamental, essential truths have grown from its toil and
achievement. Many such the American idea of citizenship contains; but of
one let us speak.

The American idea of citizenship and its ideal, its aims, possibilities,
and destiny, had its origin and enshrinement in that Anglo-Saxon spirit
of freedom which has been the peculiar characteristic of a race whose
civil and judicial development in the remotest and darkest days of its
history distanced all rival clans and, from Alfred to William III, from
tribe to Empire, has cherished and sustained a system of civil and
religious liberty, which, intolerant of every form of oppression, has
made the English language the vernacular of liberty.

In the earliest periods of these peoples' history we find the germinal
elements of those great charters of liberty which are to become the
chief corner-stone of free government and mighty guarantees of personal

A philosophical review of the evolution of these early ideas of personal
liberty to their full growth into a free constitutional government would
make an instructive and interesting study; but I lack the learning and
the ability for such disquisitions. I must therefore content myself for
the purpose of unfolding the duties and destinies of American
citizenship, to review but historically, how from simple communities
seeking to free themselves from the rule of individuals or classes, to
govern themselves by law, and make that law supreme in every exigency,
great charters were established and the reign of law instead of the rule
of princes permanently established.

Even in the establishing of their free system of public administration,
the Anglo-Saxon aim and purpose was to secure the most absolute
guarantees of personal security. The liberty of the individual unit of
society secured in the exercise of the largest liberty consistent with
the public welfare, and that liberty protected by the just and
righteous administration of public laws, was the ideal of the
Anglo-Saxon state.

In their religion, philosophy, poetry, oratory, and literature they have
always confessed that oppression was venal and wrong. If selfishness,
greed, or pride have allured them for a while from that royal path of
national rectitude and honor, they have in the final test returned
conquering to their true and higher selves. Their inborn hate of
oppression, their magnanimous and tolerant spirit of freedom gloriously
in the ascendant.

Thus it is that the free institutions of Great Britain and America have
grown and towered in strength, and in their onward march startled the
world by their progress, and appalled the very lips of prophecy by their
bold and daring sweep. They will not stop, for liberty is fearless and
the current of freedom is irresistible.

But in the early Anglo-Saxon Commonwealth, the rights, liberties, and
privileges of the citizen were not as broad and full as we find them
to-day. The spirit of liberty was weak at first, but her demands grew
apace with her strength. Neither by the generosity of princes, nor by
the wisdom of legislation, were the ordinary English rights of free
citizenship enlarged and established. Nor are the first and elemental
principles of free government which we find springing up on English soil
after the conquests, and whose history in the re-establishment of
political liberty we shall trace through countless struggles and
repressions, the original of that divine idea of freedom which it has
been the mission of the Anglo-Saxon race to give to the world.

It is but a part of that great race spirit which the Conqueror could not
conquer; the lingering spirit of freedom which the iron heel of despotic
usurpation could not stamp out, the memory of a lost freedom ranking in
the hearts of men determined to restore in their island home those
ancient rights which no man dared to question in the days of the Saxon,
Edward the Confessor.

The condition of the early Saxon as it was raised by the wisdom and
benevolence of good King Alfred, and as it remained until the end of the
reign of the unfortunate Harold, was that of a freeman, a freeman not
merely in the sense of being his own master, but "he was a living unit
in the State." He held his lands in his own right. He attended the
courts, and entered in their deliberations. He bore arms and, by
authority of law, could use them in his own defense. The animating
principle of Anglo-Saxon government was local sovereignty. Matters from
the smallest to the greatest were vested in the local power.

* * * * *

The establishment, after the granting of the Magna Charta, thus firmly
of the liberties of England has been accomplished by bitter and fierce
struggles; the obstructive forces were strong, but yielded in the end to
the onward sweep of liberty directed by the aggressive spirit of
intelligence, manhood, and humanity. At the end of the sixteenth century
this much had been gained for freedom. The principles of liberty, which
had been constantly acknowledged in written documents or had been
established by precedents and examples (some of which were the remains
of their ancient liberties) had been embodied as a part of the
fundamental law of the land; those local institutions, which a while ago
we found among the free Saxons, and even now pregnant with the seeds of
liberty,--the jury, the right of holding public meetings, of bearing
arms, and finally the Parliament itself had become a part of the common
law of England.

Then came the Reformation and its demand for religious freedom. Against
the claim of a divinely ordained kingly power, the Cavalier was found
ready to revolt. The Puritans writhed under their religious restraint.
The Puritan and the Cavalier joined their cause; political liberty
invoked the aid of Faith, and Faith hallowed and strengthened the
crusade of human liberty. The struggle increased against absolute power,
spiritual and political, now concentrated in kingly hands. Giants they
were who took up the quarrel of liberty in those dark days of civil
strife. Men they were who inherited the blood of the saintly Langton and
of his lordly Barons. Five centuries of heroic strife against oppression
had sanctified the name of Liberty. They were mad with the hatred of
tyranny, and centuries of bitter, heart-rending experience had made them
wise and valorous for the fray. Liberty is now about to win on Saxon
soil, but not there alone, for those of her yeomanry, who were hardiest
for the fight and cherished the broadest liberty, transplanted
themselves now upon this new soil of America and laid the foundation of
a new Empire, which then and forever should be untrammeled by the
conservation of princes and unabashed by the sneers of monarchs. They
rejected primogeniture and the other institutions of the Middle Ages,
and adopted the anti-feudal custom of equal inheritance. They brought
with them the Magna Charta and the Bill of Rights; they threw around
themselves the safeguard of Anglo-Saxon liberty purified and burned by
those years of oppression. They transplanted Saxon England freed from
the dross of Norman rule and feudal aristocracy. Liberty and law are
henceforth to work out the destinies of men. And who contemplating the
manner of men and whence they derived their faith, their hopes and
fears, can quibble about the aims and purposes of the founders of this
Republic? The fathers did not borrow their political ideals from the
juriscounsuls of Rome; not from the free democracy of Greece; nor did
they fuse into their system the feudal aristocratic imperialism of

To govern themselves by law, and secure therewith the largest liberty
with the greatest security of individual rights and property, was their
ideal of statecraft, and this idea, inseparable from the principles they
laid down, must endure while the fabric lasts.

I have told you that the government the fathers planted was Anglo-Saxon
in law; but it was Anglo-Saxon too in religion and spirit. Nothing has
been so conquering in its influence as the Anglo-Saxon spirit; it has
assimilated wherever it has gone, and like the leaven that leaveneth the
whole, homogeneity has followed in its fierce wake of progress with not
a whit lost of its great and fearless impulse of law and freedom.

No race has been so domineering, none stronger and with a more exclusive
spirit of caste, none with a more contemptuous dislike of inferiority,
none more violent in prejudice once formed, or dislikes once engendered;
yet doth the spirit and impulse of freedom move majestic "in the
chambers of their soul," raising them finally above those hated
obliquities, conquering their repugnance, enfeebling and vanishing their
hates. Thus one by one grave wrongs inflicted upon weaker races by the
cold, calculating hand of greed have been arrested and blotted out in
the holy names of right. Thus it is, and has been, that nations, sects,
and creeds coming to these shores lose, in the fascination of free
institutions and the august majesty of liberty, the distinctive
qualities of their old allegiance, and thus it is that over a broad land
composed of all nations, sects, and creeds there reigns one grand
homogeneity and a single patriotic impulse of faith and destiny. Few
there are of Americans who can to-day trace even the faintest spark of
their lineage to an English or even a Norman source. Yet the spirit of
the Anglo-Saxon is the presiding genius of our destiny. Its spirit is
the spirit of our law, and its religion is the evangel of our political

Inheritors of this great circumstance of power and rule, need I remind
you that, though you sacrifice your labor and toil, though you may have
brought forth this jewel of liberty regulated by law, you cannot keep it
unless you share it with the world. The evils which in days past men had
to wipe out in tears and blood will arise again and precipitate
convulsions in which liberty may expire.

The very spectacle of seeming grandeur and the outward cast of luxury
and splendor invite the enemies' quest and fans into blood-red heat his
latent ire, while pride, vanity, and hate surround the heart with the
humor of death-breeding slime into which the corroding worm is spawned.

I care nothing for the shell; the fleshy parts are no longer food for
the living, but the pearl contained in this Anglo-Saxon mollusk has for
me an irresistible charm. The pure spirit of its lofty ideals, distilled
from his life and struggles, and living in quickening touch with human
thought and aspiration, like the exaltation which lingers after some
Hosanna chorus; his sublimated actions and deeds, whose swelling flood
of cadence throb with the heart-beat of universal man,--these I love
with inexpressible devotion; these are worth preserving. All else, cast
in the rubbish heap with past delusions.

Mr. Chairman, men are great and small, they roam the vast wilderness of
the stars, and soar the very empyrean of thought and action, and they
fear and crouch and kneel; and in their quaking fears and driveling
doubts seem like puny things crawling on the ground; they are saints and
sinners; sometimes emissaries of light and love, and yet again
harbingers of ill, and sometimes the very Nemesis of hate; but in the
composite elements of their human thinking, throbbing energies of heart
and mind, they are as but a single soul, governed by one law, imbued
with one spirit, hearkening to one voice, touched by the one sympathy,
inspired by one hope, and in trend of aspiration, love and ideal,
impelled by the onward flux of one great life-struggle and purpose.

What, then, are you and I but sentient units in one great evolving
process of life-activity and thought; and yet so circumvolved in that
process that the impulse, which we irradiate from the point of our
single particular seat of energy and feeling, thrills through the vast
spheres of human purpose and endeavor, and raises the standard of truth
or forwards the advance of enlightened order like each rhythmic melody
is gathered in the mightier confluence of chime and strain to swell the
torrent of a mighty symphony.

The work we have to do is not outside, but deep down in the teeming flow
of struggling human souls. Think of them as your other self, and your
own souls will interpret the meaning of their complaints, the quality of
their striving, and the measure of their justice.

You will then behold the race of men as I have beheld them once when my
single soul seemed with sympathy winged and I sat with the lowly outcast
and felt his outrage and his shame; I brooded with him over all his
wrongs; I felt within my breast the poison shaft of hate, and clinched
like him my fist, scowled, and vengeance swore on them who drove my
despair and misery to crime by scoff and rancor and unforgiving hate.

I stood amidst a motley throng and felt my brain bereft of noble
thought; I lived in a squalid home and despised the pity which the
disdainful cast upon my lot; laughed at ribald jests and quaffed the
liquid flame, and the dark-hued nectar which concealed the serpent
beneath its foam; I held my head aloft to seem with pride imbued; I
gibed at fortune's whim and grinned a soulless sneer at my fate to
conceal a deep despair.

I roamed with the savage Indians across the arid plains, stood with them
in lonely worship of the great _Unknown_, and dropped like him a silent
tear for the woodlands gone; the fleet-footed game no longer at his
door; his father's dust, scattered by winds over consecrated and
hallowed battle-plains.

I stood beside the enchanted Nile and wondered at the mystery of the
Sphinx; I felt the lure, the wanderlust of the mysterious arid plains
and laid my body down on the desert sand to sleep, a weapon by my side;
I arose to greet the rising sun and, with "_Allah_" on my tongue, bowed
my head in solemn worship towards Mecca's distant domes.

I wandered through Africa's torrid forest and scorching plains and sat
naked before a bamboo hut; I felt the savage's freedom and his ease; I
learned the songs of birds, the shriek of beasts, the omens of the
moons, and kenned the dread and sacred lore which tradition single
tongue had brought from the ages past and gone.

I walked beside the Ganges' sacred shores, worshiped at the shrine of
mighty gods and felt the spirit of the mighty _All_ vibrate through my
being. I chanted the songs whose authors are forgot, and studied strange
philosophies of sages passed; I starved and hungered on his arid plains;
I felt the whips and scorn of cast; the curse of fated birth and the
iron rule of oppression's heartless greed.

I was slave, and by fortune scorned; I felt the whip cut into my
quivering flesh and my blood rush hot to the gaping wound; I knew the
agony of unrequited toil, and with aching limbs dragged my hopeless body
to my hut, to think, but not to sleep.

I learned to dream and hate, and at Nemesis' bloody altar immolated in
thought and hope the whole detested tribe of human oppressors and cried

And thus I know the bondage which men endure, the realty and the
delusion in what they think and feel; and the subtlety and strength of
those evil forces which color his disposition and becloud his prospect.

And I stand amidst his turbulent fortunes and above the storm and rage
of his contentions and despairs to proclaim the divinity of his soul,
and to herald a new awakening under which his quickened energies will
yet surge forward in mighty waves of better things.

If the Republic is true to the great principles of liberty and justice
which it proclaims; if you have learned the lesson of your own history,
and appropriated the experience coined out of your own struggles, then
will Anglo-Saxon genius and achievement glow like a mighty flame to
light the path of struggling men, and Anglo-Saxon glory light angels to
restore the rights of man.



_Chaplain 25th United States Infantry_

[Note 34: Delivered before General Conference, Chicago, Ill., 1904.]

_Reverend Bishops, and Brethren of the Ministry, and my Brethren of the

I thank the honorable Commission from my heart for the distinguished
favor they have conferred upon me in inviting me to address this august
assembly. Never before, during all my forty years of public life, have I
been granted so majestic a privilege; never before have I ventured to
assume so grave a responsibility; and, I may add, never before have I
felt so keenly my inability to do justice to the occasion.

I am encouraged, however, by the reflection that I am in the house of my
friends, where I may hope for an indulgent hearing, and especially upon
the subject which I have the high honor to bring before you.

The purport of my address is the conservation of life; the development
of physical and moral power as well as of mental alertness; the creation
of bravery and the evolution of that higher and broader
element--courage; the formation of character sturdy enough to upbear a
State, and intelligent enough to direct its government. What I have to
say will be toward the production of a robust and chivalric manhood, the
only proper shelter for a pure and glorious womanhood. Noble women are
the crown of heroic men. None but the brave deserve the fair, and none
but the brave can have them.

For the purpose of illustrating and enforcing these great social,
physical, and moral truths, I have chosen the Army of our country, or
the character and training of the American soldier. In this I do not
depart from Biblical practise. How many hearts have been cheered and
strengthened by the thrilling pictures painted by St. Paul of the
soldiers of his times! How many have in thought beheld his armed hosts
and heard his stirring exhortation: "Fight the good fight of faith!"

We owe our existence as a nation to the men in arms who for eight years
met the force of Great Britain with counter force, and thus cleared the
field for the statesmanship that can make the proverbial two blades of
grass grow. The man with the gun opened the way for the man with the
hoe. We who are here, and the race we represent, owe our deliverance
from chattel slavery to the men in arms who conquered the slaveholders'
Rebellion. It is a sad thought, but nevertheless one too true thus far
in human history, that liberty, man's greatest earthly boon, can be
reached only through a pathway of blood. The Army made good our
declaration of independence; and upon the Army and Navy Lincoln relied
for the efficacy of his plan of emancipation. Abstract right is fair to
look upon, and has furnished the theme for charming essays by such
beautiful writers as Ruskin and Emerson; but right, backed up by
battalions, is the right that prevails. When the men of blood and iron
come, there is no longer time for the song or the essay. It is, "Get in
line or be shot." The days of rhetoricals are over. The eloquence of the
soldier silences all. Even the laws are dumb when the sword is

Is this horrible doctrine? It is only God overthrowing Pharaoh by means
more humane than His fearful plagues, and less destructive than the
billows of that relentless sea over which redeemed Israel so exultingly
sang. No, brethren; the sword of the Lord and of Gideon has not ceased
to be a useful instrument. It is the proper thing for evil doers.

The army is the national sword, and the "powers that be" bear it "not in
vain." It is a fearful engine of destruction, pure and simple. Von
Moltke says: "The immediate aim of the soldier's life is destruction,
and nothing but destruction; and whatever constructions wars result in
are remote and non-military."

An Austrian officer says: "Live and let live is no device for an army.
Contempt for one's own comrades, for the troops of the enemy, and, above
all, fierce contempt for one's own person, are what war demands of every
one. Far better is it for an army to be too savage, too cruel, too
barbarous, than to possess too much sentimentality and human
reasonableness. If the soldier is to be good for anything as a soldier,
he must be exactly the opposite of a reasoning and thinking man. The
measure of goodness in him is his possible use in war. War, and even
peace, require of the soldier absolutely peculiar standards of
morality. The recruit brings with him common moral notions of which he
must seek immediately to get rid. For him, victory--success--must be
everything. The most barbaric tendencies in man come to life again in
war, and for war's uses they are incommensurably good."

Perhaps the greatest of American psychologists, Professor William James,
adds to these remarks: "Consequently the soldier can not train himself
to be too feelingless to all those usual sympathies and respects,
whether for persons or for things that make for conservation. Yet," he
says, "the fact remains that war is a school of strenuous life and
heroism and, being in the line of aboriginal instinct, is the only
school that as yet is universally available."

Emerson says: "War educates the senses, calls into action the will,
perfects the physical constitution, brings men into such swift and close
collision in critical moments that man measures man."

It is not my purpose, however, to glorify war. War to me is horrible
beyond description or conception, and it is for war that armies are
trained; yet the training of an army, like the training of even a
pugilist, is a work of great moral value.

Notwithstanding the fact that the Army gave us our independence, when
the Revolution had succeeded, and the Constitution had been framed, and
the country launched on her career, there was a tendency to forget
Joseph. So strong was the feeling against a standing army that it was
with difficulty that even a nucleus was maintained. The first
legislation on this subject gave us but one battalion of artillery and
one regiment of infantry, the whole consisting of 46 officers and 840
men. In 1814, because of the war with England, the army ran up to
60,000; but the next year fell to 12,000, and continued even below that
number up to 1838, when it again went up to about 12,000. In 1846,
during the Mexican War, it reached about 18,000. When the Civil War
broke out it was about 12,000. There were in the Army, at the time of
the beginning of the Civil War, over 1,000 officers. Two hundred and
eighty-six of these left the service of the United States, and
subsequently served in the Confederate Army. Of these 286, 187 had been
educated at West Point. But so far as I am able to say now, not a single
enlisted man followed the example of these officers.

Beside the staff departments, the Army now consists of 15 regiments of
cavalry, 30 batteries of field artillery, 126 companies of coast
artillery, and 30 regiments of infantry. These different classes are
known as the three arms of the service: Cavalry, artillery, and
infantry. Our whole Army to-day numbers 67,259 men. We are the greatest
nation, with the smallest army. Our Army, however, is capable of rapid
expansion; and, with our National Guard, we need not fear any emergency.
This Army, though so small, is in one sense a trained athlete, ready to
defend the nation's honor and flag. In another sense, it is a vast
practical school, in which the military profession is taught. The
students are not only the 60,000 who are now serving, but the many
thousands also, who come and go. Men enlist for three years, and
although many re-enlist, the Army is constantly receiving recruits, and
constantly discharging trained soldiers. These discharged soldiers are
often found among our best citizens.

The entire corps of over 3,800 officers may be regarded as professors or
instructors, whose duty it is to bring the Army up to a state of
perfection. To this corps of 3,800 commissioned officers must be added,
also, the large number of intelligent non-commissioned officers, who are
assistant instructors of the very highest utility. The work of the Army
consists of study and practice, instruction and drill. It is an
incessant school. There are officers' school, non-commissioned officers'
school, school of the soldier, school of the company, school of the
battalion, post school,--besides drills and lectures without number. The
actual scientific information imparted to the enlisted men is
considerable. To specify only in small part: It includes all methods of
signaling, up to telegraphy; all methods of preserving and preparing
food; all methods of first treatment of wounds; how to estimate
distance, to map a country, to care for property and stock, and the most
thorough knowledge of weapons and warfare. To become a second lieutenant
in the Army, a man must either go through West Point, or have the
equivalent of a college education, especially in mathematics, history,
and law; and have, besides, an accurate knowledge of what is purely
military. And when he is made a second lieutenant and enters upon his
career as an officer, his studies begin afresh. He must study to prepare
himself for subsequent promotions. Failure in this means dismission.
The army officer to-day must be exceedingly thorough and accurate in his

General Corbin says: "Never before in the history of the Army have there
been so many acceptable candidates for promotion as there are at this
time. Never before has the Army been in a higher state of efficiency and
in more perfect accord than it is to-day. Until within a short time, an
officer graduated at the Military Academy at West Point was looked upon
as a man with 'a finished education'; but to-day, and for the last four
years, we accept that education merely as the foundation upon which a
more advanced education is to be built. This theory is in general
practice, and has been so accepted. The service schools at Fort Monroe,
Fort Totten, Fort Riley, Fort Leavenworth, and the War College at
Washington are, in most respects, high-class post-graduate schools. In
addition of this, every post is a school of application, educating
officers and men for the duties now required of them."

What, then, is this training of the army for which the officer must
possess this most accurate, thorough, and scientific education? He is
required to have this education that he may train the soldier up to the
highest point of efficiency. The officer must know, and must be able to
impress the soldier with the fact that he _does_ know. The officer must
have the full _science_ of everything pertaining to the soldier's work,
in order that he may teach the soldier the _art_ of it. The nature of
the training to which the soldier is subjected may be best understood by
considering its end. This, as in all training, is more important than
the method. The primary object of the training is to unify the army and
make it the efficient instrument for executing the nation's will. By
discipline, individual efforts are brought under control of the chief. A
company is well disciplined when, in its movement, its collective soul,
so to speak, is identified with that of its commander. The officer must
have possession of his men, so that when the command is given, an
electric current will seem to pass through the company, and the movement
will, as it were, execute itself. In a well-drilled and well-disciplined
company, the orders do not seem to pass through the intellects of the
men. Without reflection, but simply by concentrated attention, the work
is done. The wills of the men are not only temporarily dislodged, but in
their place is substituted the dominant will of the commander. This is
the psychological end sought; and this condition secures instantaneous
obedience to orders. It is this which brings about those marvels of
execution which occur among disciplined men. Men perform acts in which
neither their personal reason nor even their personal will has any part.

A second end of the training is to habituate the men so firmly in the
performance of certain movements that no emotion can interfere with
their action. Upon the battle-field there is nothing left of the
exercises of the times of peace, but that which has become a habit, or
in a word, an instinct. The soldier must be so trained that he will go
on with his work as long as he has the ability to do so. One has said:
"It must be the aim of the new discipline to make the private soldier
capable of keeping steadfastly in mind for the whole of the day, or
even for several days, and striving with all his might to carry out,
what he has been told by a superior who is no longer present, and who,
for all he may know, is dead."

A third end sought in military training is to render the soldier strong
and agile, so that he can move with rapidity, sustain long marches, and
handle his weapon with dexterity.

* * * * *

Every consideration in feeding, clothing, sheltering, both men and
animals, has but one object,--efficiency. All questions of moral duty,
all ideas of the spiritual or immortal interests, are completely
submerged beneath the ever-present thought of material force. Power must
be had by men, horses, machinery; power, aggressive power, is the
all-pervading and all-controlling thought of the army.

* * * * *

An army is properly an incarnation of the fiend of destruction. Every
part of its legitimate work is to destroy. If it constructs bridges and
builds roads, erects forts and digs trenches, these are all that it may
destroy, or prevent some other incarnation from destroying _it_. Armies
lay waste and destroy. Cornfields, orchards, lawns, life, and treasure
are all prey for the voracious destroyer.

The motive employed in bringing the soldier to the high state of
excellence here described is always that of duty. The word "duty" is
very prominent and very full of meaning in the army. Military duty is
made a moral obligation founded upon patriotism. This sentiment of duty
is the moral force in the army that gives dignity to its obedience. The
army develops, strengthens, and educates this _sense of duty_, until it
becomes supreme. It is this _sense of duty_ which produces endurance to
undergo privations, and leads men to be patient under the greatest
sacrifices. The physical force which we see in the army depends upon the
moral or spiritual which we do not see.

The whole life of the army, its very soul, the breath which animates its
every part, is _preparation for war_. To be _ready for war_ is the
supreme end toward which all its efforts tend. The mechanical parts of
the work are so numerous and various that I can barely outline them
here. There are those exercises which conduce to health and vigor, known
as the setting-up drill. These exercises correct the form of the body
and transform the recruit into a soldier. The constant drills all have
their effect upon the bearing and gait of the men. The extensive system
of calisthenics gives to the body suppleness. All this work is done
under direction, so that obedience and discipline are taught at the same
time with physical culture. Apart from these exercises are _voluntary
athletics_, which are greatly encouraged. It is believed that athletic
exercises, by bettering the bodies of the men, better also their minds;
that, for the welfare of the army, these exercises rank next to training
in shooting. I know you will take pride in the fact that the black
soldiers, both of infantry and cavalry, occupy a place in the very front
rank in all these manly exercises. They are equal to America's best on
the drillground, on the athletic grounds, and on the field of bloody

The practise of cleanliness is enjoined all the time, along with these
exercises. The soldier is taught how to make his bed and to put all his
effects in order, and is then compelled to do it; and thus there is
established within him a love of order. Punctuality, cleanliness, and
order are the soldier's three graces. The hygiene of his body, care of
his arms and equipments, respect for his uniform, are driven into his
inmost soul. Our regiment lived in the midst of cholera, without
suffering from the disease. Hence the army is a great object-lesson of
what care and training can make of men.

But the army in our Republic is of far greater value in a moral sense
than in a physical sense. In these days when authority is departing from
the home, the church, and the school, it is well that it can find refuge
somewhere in the country. The working of the army rests entirely upon
authority. One single will pervades every part of it, although this will
is participated in by thousands. Every subordinate is independent within
limits; but one general will controls all. Respect for authority is
enforced, and thus taught, not in theory alone, but by practice. The
corporal is not the same as a private. The man who holds a commission
from the President represents the high authority of the Republic; and
the true soldier yields him both obedience and respect. Everywhere the
soldier is taught obedience to law. After all that I have said, it is
scarcely necessary to emphasize the fact that the soldier's obedience
becomes voluntary, and that he takes pride in his profession. Hence the
army is a body of men, not moving according to their own wills, not a
deliberative assembly, but a purely executive body, the incarnation of
law and of force. It is silent, but powerful. It does not talk, but
acts; army spells action.

The men who are trained in our Army are not likely to become members of
the lawless element. They have learned too well the lessons of order and
the necessity of subordination. The attitude of the Army upon the vexed
race question is better than that of any other secular institution of
our country. When the Fifth Army Corps returned from Cuba and went into
camp at Montauk Point, broken down as it was by a short but severe
campaign, it gave to the country a fine exhibition of the moral effects
of military training. There was seen the broadest comradeship. The four
black regiments were there, and cordially welcomed by their companions
in arms. In the maneuvers at Fort Riley, no infantry regiment on the
ground was more popular than the 25th; and in contests the men of the
25th proved their mettle by carrying off nearly every medal and trophy
in sight.

"Perhaps the most notable series of events, in the light of the popular
notion of Negro inferiority, were the athletic sports. The first of
these was the baseball game for the championship of the Department of
the Missouri and a silk banner. This contest had gone through the
several organizations, and was finally narrowed down to the 10th Cavalry
and the 25th Infantry. On October 27th, which was set apart as a field
day for athletic sports, the officers of the encampment, many women and
civilians, as well as the soldiers of the regular Army present,
assembled on the athletic grounds at 10.30 A. M. to witness the game. A
most interesting and thoroughly scientific game was played, the 25th
winning in the eleventh inning by a score of 4 to 3. The banner would
have gone to colored soldiers in either case."

We must not expect too much of the army. It is not a church, not a
Sunday-school, not a missionary society. Its code of morals is very
short, very narrow, but it enforces what it has. Its commandments are:

    1. Thou shalt not fail to obey thy superior officer.
    2. Thou shalt not miss any calls sounded out by the
    3. Thou shalt not appear at inspection with anything
    out of order in thy person, clothing, or equipment.
    4. Thou shalt not lie.
    5. Thou shalt not steal.
    6. Thou shalt not leave the post or garrison without

I would say, further, that warfare now requires so much from the man who
carries it on, that it is impossible to unite the general and the
statesman in one person. The army must be purely executive, carrying out
the mandates of the State. The moral and political questions must be
resolved by men of other professions. The soldier has all that he can do
to attend to the exigencies of the battle.

The Army of our Republic has a great moral mission which it is
performing almost unconsciously. It is a most influential witness
against lawlessness. By its own perfect order and obedience to
discipline it gives the force of a powerful example in favor of loyalty
to the Republic and respect for the laws. The best school of loyalty in
the land is the army. Every evening in the camp, to see ten thousand men
stand in respectful attention to our song to the national banner is a
lesson of great moral force. In still another sense our Army is also a
great moral force. When men see what a terrific engine of destruction it
is, the good people rejoice because they know this engine is in safe
hands; and the evil-disposed look on and are enlightened. Fierce
anarchists will stop to count ten, at least, before they begin their
attack upon the government.

Lastly, the Army, by the very aristocracy of its constitution,
contributes much to make effective the doctrines of equality. The black
soldier and the white soldier carry the same arms, eat the same rations,
serve under the same laws, participate in the same experience, wear the
same uniforms, are nursed in the same hospitals, and buried in the same
cemeteries. The Roman Catholic Church, by its priestly aristocracy, has
always been a bulwark against caste. So, in the same manner, the Army of
our Republic, by its aristocracy of commission, has proven itself the
most effectual barrier against the inundating waves of race
discrimination that the country has as yet produced.



_of Richmond, Virginia_

[Note 35: Delivered at the International, Interdenominational
Sunday-school Convention, Massey Hall, Toronto, Canada, June 27, 1905.]

If I were asked to name the most wonderful and far-reaching achievement
of the splendid, all-conquering Anglo-Saxon race, I would ignore the
Pass of Thermopylæ, the immortal six hundred at Balaklava, Trafalgar,
Waterloo, Quebec, Bunker Hill, Yorktown, and Appomattox; I would forget
its marvelous accumulations of wealth; its additions to the literature
of the world, and point to the single fact that it has done the most to
spread the religion of Jesus Christ, as the greatest thing it has
accomplished for the betterment of the human family.

The Jews preserved the idea of a one God, and gave the ethics to
religion--the ten commandements, the Lord's Prayer, and the Sermon on
the Mount; the Greeks contributed philosophy; the Romans, polity; the
Teutons, liberty and breadth of thought; but it remained to the
Anglo-Saxon implicitly to obey the divine command: "Go ye into all the
world, and preach the Gospel to every creature."

If some man would ask me the one act on the part of my own race that
gives to me the greatest hope for the Negro's ultimate elevation to the
heights of civilization and culture, I would not revel in ancient lore
to prove them the pioneers in civilization, nor would I point to their
marvelous progress since Emancipation that has surprised their most
sanguine friends, but I would take the single idea of their unquestioned
acceptance of the dogmas and tenets of the Christian religion as
promulgated by the Anglo-Saxon, as the highest evidence of the future
possibilities of the race.

Ours was indeed a wonderful faith that overleaped the barriers of
ecclesiastical juggling to justify from Holy Writ the iniquitous traffic
in human flesh and blood; forgot the glaring inconsistencies of a
religion that prayed, on Sunday, "Our Father which art in heaven," and
on Monday sold a brother, who, though cut in ebony, was yet the image of
the Divine. The Negro had in very truth,

    "That faith that would not shrink,
      Tho' pressed by every foe;
    That would not tremble on the brink
      Of any earthly woe.
    That faith that shone more bright and clear
      When trials reigned without;
    That, when in danger, knew no fear,
      In darkness felt no doubt."

If it is indeed true that "by faith are ye saved," not only in this
world, but in the world to come, then God will vouchsafe to us a most
abundant salvation.

It is my blessed privilege to-night, while you are pleading for the
"Winning of a generation," and at this special session for "the relation
of the Sunday-school to missions, both home and foreign," to plead for
my people, and my prayer is that God may help me to make my plea
effective. For the people for whom I plead are bone of my bone and flesh
of my flesh. I plead for help for my own bright-eyed boy and girl, and
for all the little black boys and girls in my far-off Southern home.

If the great race problem is to be settled (and it is a problem,
notwithstanding all that has been said to the contrary), it is to be
settled, not in blood and carnage, not by material wealth and
accumulation of lands and houses, not in literary culture nor on the
college campus, not in industrial education, or in the marts of trade,
but by the religion of Him who said, "And I, if I be lifted up, will
draw all men unto Me." These things are resultant factors in the
problem, but the problem itself lies far deeper than these.

Calhoun is reported to have said, "If I could find a Negro who could
master the Greek syntax, I would believe in his possibilities of
development." A comparatively few years have passed away, and a Negro
not only masters the Greek syntax, but writes a Greek grammar accepted
as authority by some of the ablest scholars of the States. But Abbé
Gregori of France published, in the fifteenth century, "Literature of
the Negro," telling of the achievements of Negro writers, scholars,
priests, philosophers, painters, and Roman prelates in Spain, Portugal,
France, Italy, Holland, and Turkey, which prompted Blumenbach to
declare it would be difficult to meet with such in the French Academy;
and yet, literature and learning have not settled the problem. No, the
religion of Jesus Christ is the touchstone to settle all the problems of
human life. More than nineteen hundred years ago, Christ gave solution
when he said, "Ye are brethern," "Love is the fulfilling of the law,"
and "Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to

Is the Negro in any measure deserving of the help for which I plead? The
universal brotherhood, and common instincts of humanity should be
enough. I bring more. Othello, in speaking of Desdemona, says, "She
loved me for the dangers I had passed, I loved her that she did pity
me." If pity and suffering can awaken sympathy, then we boldly claim our
right to the fullest measure of consideration. Two hundred and fifty
years of slavery, with all its attendant evils, is one of our most
potent weapons to enlist sympathy and aid.

I come with no bitterness to North or South. For slavery I acknowledge
all the possible good that came to us from it; the contact with superior
civilization, the knowledge of the true God, the crude preparation for
citizenship, the mastery of some handicraft; yet, slavery had its side
of suffering and degradation. North and South rejoice that it is gone
forever, and yet, many of its evils cling to us, like the Old Man of the
Sea to Sinbad the sailor, and, like Banquo's ghost, they haunt us still.

As I stand here to-night, my mind is carried back to a plantation down
in "Old Virginia." It is the first day of January, 1864. Lincoln's
immortal proclamation is a year old, and yet I see an aunt of mine, the
unacknowledged offspring of her white master, being sent away from the
old homestead to be sold. The proud Anglo-Saxon blood in her veins will
assert itself as she resists with all the power of her being the
attempts of the overseer to ply lash to her fair skin, and for this she
must be sold "Way down Souf." I see her now as she comes down from the
"Great House," chained to twelve others, to be carried to Lumpkin's jail
in Richmond to be put upon the "block." She had been united to a slave
of her choice some two years before, and a little innocent babe had been
born to them. The husband, my mother with the babe in her arms, and
other slaves watch them from the "big gate" as they come down to the
road to go to their destination some twenty miles away. As she saw us,
great tears welled up in her big black eyes; not a word could she utter
as she looked her last sad farewell. She thought of one of the old
slave-songs we used to sing in the cabin prayer-meetings at night as we
turned up the pots and kettles, and filled them up with water to drown
the sound. Being blessed, as is true of most of my race, with a splendid
voice, she raised her eyes, and began to sing:

    "Brethren, fare you well, brethren, fare you well,
    May God Almighty bless you until we meet again."

Singing these touching lines she passed out of sight. More than forty
years have passed, and she and her loved ones have never met again,
unless they have met in the Morning land, where partings are no more.

For the sufferings we have endured, leaving their traces indelibly
stamped upon us, I claim your aid that we may have for our children this
blessed Gospel, the panacea for all human ills.

The Negro has elements in his nature that make him peculiarly
susceptible to religious training. He stands as a monument to
faithfulness to humble duty, one of the highest marks of the
Christ-life. He is humble and faithful, but not from cowardice, in
evidence of which I recall his achievements at Boston, Bunker Hill, New
Orleans, Milikens Bend, Wilson's Landing, and San Juan Hill.

He fought when a slave, some would say, from compulsion, but would he
fight for love of the flag of the Union? God gave him a chance to answer
the question at San Juan Hill. The story is best understood as told to
me by one of the brave 9th Cavalry as he lay wounded at Old Point
Comfort, Va.

* * * * *

Up go the splendid Rough Riders amid shot and shell from enemies
concealed in fields, trees, ditches, and the block-house on the hill.
The galling fire proves too much for them and back they come. A second
and third assault proves equally unavailing. They must have help. Help
arrives, in the form of a colored regiment. See them as they come, black
as the sable plume of midnight, yet irresistible as the terrible
cyclone. As is the custom of my race under excitement of any kind, they
are singing, not

    "My country, 'tis of thee,
    Sweet land of Liberty,
    Of thee I sing,"

though fighting willingly for the land that gave them birth; not, "The
Bonnie blue flag," though they were willing to die for the flag they
loved; they sing a song never heard on battle-field before, "There's a
hot time in the old town to-night." On they come, trampling on the dead
bodies of their comrades; they climb the hill. "To the rear!" is the
command. "To the front!" they cry; and leaderless, with officers far in
the rear, they plant the flag on San Juan Hill, and prove to the world
that Negroes can fight for love of country.

They were faithful to humble duty in the dark days of the South from
1861 to 1865. When Jefferson Davis had called for troops until he had
well-nigh decimated the fair Southland, and even boys, in their devotion
to the cause they loved dearly, were willing to go to the front, my
young master came to my old mistress and asked to be allowed to go.
Calling my Uncle Isaac, my old mistress said to him, "Isaac, go along
with your young Mars Edmund, take good care of him, and bring him home
to me." "I gwy do de bes I kin," was his reply. Off these two went, amid
the tears of the whole plantation, and we heard no more of them for some
time. One night we were startled to hear the dogs howling down in the
pasture-lot, always to the Southern heart a forewarning of death. A few
nights thereafter, my mother heard a tapping on the kitchen window, and,
on going to the door, saw Uncle Isaac standing there--alone. "What in
the world are you doing here?" was the question of my mother. "Whar's
mistis'?" was the interrogative answer. My mother went to call the
mistress, who, white as a sheet repeated the question. "Mistis', I done
de bes' I could." Going a few paces from the door, while the soft
southern moon shone pitilessly through the solemn pines, he brought the
dead body of his young master and laid it tenderly at his mother's feet.
He had brought his dead "massa" on his back a distance of more than
twenty miles from the battle-field, thus faithfully keeping his promise.
Such an act of devotion can never be forgotten while memory holds its
sacred office. Not one case of nameless crime was ever heard in those
days, though the flower of the womanhood of the South was left
practically helpless in the hands of black men in Southern plantations.

    "But as a faithful watch-dog stands and guards with jealous eye,
    He cared for master's wife and child, and at the door would lie,
    To shed his blood in their defense, 'gainst traitors, thieves, and knaves,
    Altho' those masters went to fight to keep them helpless slaves."

Some have claimed that, instead of putting so much money in churches,
the Negro, after the war, should have built mills and factories, and
thus would have advanced more rapidly in civilization; but I rejoice
that he did build churches, and to-day can say that of the three hundred
millions he has accumulated, more than forty millions are in church
property in the sixteen Southern States. This shows his fidelity and
gratitude to God, and that by intuition he had grasped the fundamental
fact that faith and love and morality are greater bulwarks for the
perpetuity of a nation than material wealth; that somehow he was in
accord with God's holy mandate that "man does not live by bread alone."
Guided by a superior wisdom, he first sought the kingdom of heaven, and
it does seem that "all these things" are slowly being added to him.
Education and wealth, unsanctified by the grace of God, are after all,
curses rather than a blessing. We are to rise, not by our strong bodies,
our intellectual powers, or material wealth, although these are
necessary concomitants, but by the virtue, character, and honesty of our
men and women.

We are proud of our 30,000 teachers, 2,000 graduated doctors, 1,000
lawyers, 20,000 ordained ministers, 75,000 business men, 400 patentees,
and 250,000 farms all paid for, as evidences of our possibilities, but
proudest of the fact that nearly three millions of our almost ten
millions of Negroes are professing Christians. It is true that the black
man is not always the best kind of a Christian. He is often rather crude
in worship, with a rather hazy idea of the connection between religion
and morality. A colored man, on making a loud profession of religion,
was asked if he were going to pay a certain debt he had contracted,
remarked, "'Ligun is 'ligun, an' bisnes' is bisnes', an' I aint gwy mix
um," yet I am afraid ours is not the only race that fails to "mix um,"
and he does not have to go far to find others with advantages far
superior to his, who have not reached the delectable mountain. We, like
others, are seeking higher ground, and some have almost reached it.
Thank God we can point to thousands of Negro Christians whose faith is
as strong as that of the prophets of old, and whose lives are as pure
and sweet as the morning dew.

Our greatest curse to-day is the rum-shop, kept far too often by men of
the developed and forward race to filch from us our hard earnings, and
give us shame and misery in return. And a man who would deliberately
debauch and hinder a backward race, struggling for the light, would "rob
the dead, steal the orphan's bread, pillage the palace of the King of
Kings, and clip the angels' pinions while they sing."

Right by the side of this hindrance, especially in the country
districts, is our ignorant, and, in too many cases, venial ministry, for
ignorance is the greatest curse on earth, save sin. The Sunday-school is
destined to be the most potent factor in the removal of this evil. As
our children see the light as revealed in the Sunday-school by the
teachers of God's word, they will demand an intelligent and moral
ministry and will support no other. Let me say to you that there is no
agency doing more in that absolutely necessary and fundamental line than
this God-sent association.

Wherever your missionaries have gone, there have been magical and
positive changes for good, and the elevating power of this work for us
can never be told. God bless the thousands of Sunday-school teachers
whose names may never be known outside their immediate circles, and yet
are doing a work so grand and noble that angels would delight to come
down and bear them company.

There is a beautiful story told in Greek mythology that when Ulysses was
passing in his ship by the Isle of the Sirens, the beautiful sirens
began to play their sweetest music to lure the sailors from their posts
of duty. Ulysses and his sailors stuffed wax in their ears, and lashed
themselves to the masts that they might not be lured away; but, when
Orpheus passed by in the search of the golden fleece and heard the same
sweet songs, he simply took out his harp and played sweeter music, and
not a sailor desired to leave the vessel. The sirens of sin and crime
are doing all in their power to lure us from the highest and best things
in life. Wealth, education, political power are, after all, but wax in
the ears, the ropes that may or may not hold us to the masts of safety;
but that sweeter music of the heart, played on the harp of love by the
fingers of faith will hold us stronger than "hoops of steel." Let the
great Sunday-school movement continue to play for us this sweeter music,
and no sirens can lure us away from truth and right and heaven. The
mission that will be of real help to us will be the mission dictated by
love, for no race is more susceptible to kindness than ours. It must be
undertaken in the spirit of the Master who said, "I call ye not
servants, for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth; but I have
called you friends." The Negro loves his own and is satisfied to be with
them, and yet, the man who would really help him must be a man who has
seen the vision. Peter was unwilling to go to the Gentiles, being an
orthodox Jew, until God put him in a trance upon the house top, let down
the sheet from heaven with all manner of beasts, and bid him rise up,
slay, and eat. Peter strenuously objected, saying, "Lord, I have touched
nothing unclean." But God said, "What I have cleansed, call thou not
unclean." Then Peter said, "I see of a truth that God is no respector of
persons, but has made of one blood all men to dwell upon all the face of
the earth."

I pray, I believe, that you have seen this vision, and in this spirit
have come to help us. Sir Launfal, in searching for the Holy Grail,
found it in ministering to the suffering and diseased at his own door.
Ye who are in search of God's best gift can find it to-day in lifting up
these ten millions of people at your door, broken by slavery, bound by
ignorance, yet groping for the light. If we go down in sin and
ignorance, we can not go alone, but must contaminate and curse millions
unborn. If we go up, as in God's name we will, we will constitute the
brightest star in your crown. What religion has done for others, it will
do for us. See the triumphs of King Emanuel in Africa, Burmah, China,
and the isles of the sea. It was Christianity that liberated four
millions of slaves, and brought them to their better position. Christian
men, North and South, are helping them to-day. We could not rise alone.

* * * * *

Has the Negro made improvement commensurate with the help he has
received from North and South? I believe he has, and that each year
finds him better than the last. Good Dr. Talmage was visiting a
parishioner when a little girl sat on his knee. Seeing his seamed and
wrinkled face, she asked, "Doctor, did God make you?" "Yes," was the
reply. Then, looking at her own sweet, rosy face in a glass opposite,
she asked, "Did God make me, too?" "Yes." "Did God make me after he
made you?" "Yes, my child, why?" Looking again at his face and hers,
she said, "Well. Doctor, God is doing better work these days."

God bless our mothers and fathers; no nobler souls ever lived under such
circumstances; but God has answered their prayers, and with the young
folks will do better work. The convention helps us to help ourselves,
the only true help, and in this the conveners are investing in
soul-power that pays the biggest dividends, and its bonds are always
redeemable at the Bank of Heaven.

In a terrible storm at sea, when all the passengers were trembling with
fear, one little boy stood calm and serene. "Why so calm, my little
man?" asked one. "My father runs this ship," was the reply. I have too
much confidence in what religion has done and too much faith in what it
can do, to be afraid. "God's in his heaven, all's right with the world."
Let each do his part to help on the cause.

    "There is never a rose in all the world
      But makes some green spray sweeter;
    There is never a wind in all the sky
      But makes some bird's wing fleeter;
    There is never a star but brings to earth
      Some silvery radiance tender,
    And never a sunset cloud but helps
      To cheer the sunset's splendor.
    No robin but may cheer some heart,
      Its dawnlight gladness voicing;
    God gives us all some small sweet way
      To set the world rejoicing."

America, I believe, is destined of God to be the land that shall flow
with milk and honey, the King's Highway, when the "ransomed of the Lord
shall return and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their
heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and mourning shall
flee away."

I see gathered upon our fair western plain nations of all the earth. The
Italian is there and thinks of "Italia, fair Italia!" The Frenchman
sings his "Marsellaise." The solid, phlegmatic German sings his "Die
Wacht am Rhein." The Irish sing "Killarney" and "Wearin' the Green"; the
Scotchman his "Blue Bells"; the Englishman, "God save the King!"; the
American, the "Star-spangled Banner." God bless the patriot, but the
ultimate end of all governments is that the Kingdom of Christ may
prevail. One towering Christian man thinks of this, and seeing a black
man standing by without home or country remembers that "all are Christ's
and Christ's is God's." He swings a baton high in air and starts a grand
hallelujah chorus. Forgot is all else as the grand chorus, white and
black, of every age and every clime, sing till heaven's arches ring
again, while angels from the battlements of heaven listen and wave anew
the palm-branches from the trees of paradise, and the angels' choir that
sang on the plains of Bethlehem more than nineteen hundred years ago
join in the grand refrain,

    "All hail the power of Jesus' name,
      Let angels prostrate fall;
    Bring forth the royal diadem,
      And crown him Lord of all."



_Editor A. M. E. Church Review_

[Note 36: Delivered on the occasion of the Citizen's Celebration of
100th Anniversary of the birth of William Lloyd Garrison, held under the
auspices of the Boston Suffrage League, in Faneuil Hall, Boston, Mass.,
U.S.A., Dec. 11, 1905.]

_Friends, Citizens:_

We have assembled here to-night to celebrate the one hundredth birth of
William Lloyd Garrison. Not far from this city he was born. Within the
gates of this city, made famous by some of America's most famous men, he
spent more than two-thirds of his long and eventful career, enriching
its history and adding to the glory of its renown. This place, of all
places, is in keeping with the hour. It is most appropriate that we
should meet in Faneuil Hall, the cradle of American liberty, a spot
hallowed and made sacred by the statesmen, soldiers, orators, scholars,
and reformers who have given expression to burning truths and found a
hearing within these walls. Of all people it is most fitting that the
Negro Americans of Boston should be the ones to take the lead in
demonstrating to their fellow-citizens, and to the world, that his high
character is cherished with affection, and the priceless value of his
unselfish labors in their behalf shall forever be guarded as a sacred

Only succeeding generations and centuries can tell the carrying power of
a man's life. Some men, whose contemporaries thought their title to
enduring fame secure, have not been judged worthy in a later time to
have their names recorded among the makers of history. Some men are
noted, some are distinguished, some are famous,--only a few are great.

The men whose deeds are born to live in history do not appear more than
once or twice in a century. Of the millions of men who toil and strive,
the number is not large whose perceptible influence reaches beyond the
generation in which they lived. It does not take long to call the roll
of honor of any generation, and when this roll is put to the test of the
unprejudiced scrutiny of a century, only a very small and select company
have sufficient carrying power to reach into a second century. When the
roll of the centuries is called, we may mention almost in a single
breath the names which belong to the ages. Abraham and Moses stand out
clearly against the horizon of thirty centuries. St. Paul, from his
Roman prison, in the days of the Cæsars, is still an articulate and
authoritative voice; Savonarola, rising from the ashes of his
funeral-pyre in the streets of Florence, still pleads for civic
righteousness; the sound of Martin Luther's hammer nailing his thesis to
the door of his Wittenberg church continues to echo around the world;
the battle-cry of Cromwell's Ironsides shouting, "The Lord of Hosts!"
still causes the tyrant and the despot to tremble upon their thrones;
out of the fire and blood of the French Revolution, "Liberty and
Equality" survive; Abraham Lincoln comes from the backwoods of Kentucky,
and the prairies of Illinois, to receive the approval of all succeeding
generations of mankind for his Proclamation of Emancipation; John Brown
was hung at Harper's Ferry that his soul might go marching on in the
tread of every Northern regiment that fought for the "Union forever;"
William Lloyd Garrison, mobbed in the streets of Boston for pleading the
cause of the slave, lived to see freedom triumph, and to-night, a
century after his birth, his name is cherished, not only in America, but
around the world, wherever men aspire to individual liberty and personal

William Lloyd Garrison was in earnest. He neither temporized nor
compromised with the enemies of human freedom. He gave up all those
comforts, honors, and rewards which his unusual talents would easily
have won for him in behalf of the cause of freedom which he espoused. He
stood for righteousness with all the rugged strength of a prophet. Like
some Elijah of the Gilead forests, he pleaded with this nation to turn
away from the false gods it had enshrined upon the altars of human
liberty. Like some John the Baptist crying in the wilderness, he called
upon this nation to repent of its sin of human slavery, and to bring
forth the fruits of its repentance in immediate emancipation.

William Lloyd Garrison was born in Newburyport, Mass., Dec. 10, 1805. He
came of very poor and obscure parentage. His father, who was a seafaring
man, early abandoned the family for causes supposed to relate to his
intemperance. The whole career of Garrison was a struggle against
poverty. His educational advantages were limited. He became a printer's
apprentice when quite a lad, and learned the printing trade. When he
launched his paper, _The Liberator_, which was to deal such destructive
blows to slavery, the type was set by his own hands. The motto of _The
Liberator_ was "Our country is the world, our countrymen mankind."

Garrison did not worship the golden calf. His course could not be
changed, nor his opinion influenced by threats of violence or the bribe
of gold. Money could not persuade him to open his mouth against the
truth, or buy his silence from uncompromising denunciation of the wrong.
He put manhood above money, humanity above race, the justice of God
above the justices of the Supreme Court, and conscience above the
Constitution. Because he took his stand upon New Testament righteousness
as taught by Christ, he was regarded as a fanatic in a Christian land.
When he declared that "he determined at every hazard to lift up a
standard of emancipation in the eyes of the nation, within sight of
Bunker Hill and in the birthplace of liberty," he was regarded as a
public enemy, in a nation conceived in liberty and dedicated to freedom!

Garrison drew his arguments from the Bible and the Declaration of
Independence, only to be jeered as a wild enthusiast. He would not
retreat a single inch from the straight path of liberty and justice. He
refused to purchase peace at the price of freedom. He would not drift
with the current of the public opinion of his day. His course was
up-stream; his battle against the tide. He undertook to create a right
public sentiment on the question of freedom, a task as great as it was
difficult. Garrison thundered warnings to arouse the public conscience
before the lightnings of his righteous wrath and the shafts of his
invincible logic wounded the defenders of slavery in all the vulnerable
joints of their armor. He declared: "Let Southern oppressors
tremble--let their secret abettors tremble; let their Northern
apologists tremble; let all the enemies of the persecuted blacks
tremble." For such utterances as these his name throughout the nation
became one of obloquy and reproach.

He was not bound to the slave by the ties of race, but by the bond of
common humanity which he considered a stronger tie. In his struggle for
freedom there was no hope of personal gain; he deliberately chose the
pathway of financial loss and poverty. There were set before his eyes no
prospect of honor, no pathways leading to promotion, no voice of popular
approval, save that of his conscience and his God. His friends and
neighbors looked upon him as one who brought a stigma upon the fair name
of the city in which he lived. The business interests regarded him as an
influence which disturbed and injured the relations of commerce and of
trade; the Church opposed him; the press denounced him; the State
regarded him as an enemy of the established order; the North repudiated
him; the South burned him in effigy. Yet, almost single-handed and
alone, Garrison continued to fight on, declaring that "his reliance for
the deliverance of the oppressed universally is upon the nature of man,
the inherent wrongfulness of oppression, the power of truth, and the
omnipotence of God." After the greatest civil war that ever immersed a
nation in a baptism of blood and tears, Garrison, unlike most reformers,
lived to see the triumph of the cause for which he fought and every
slave not only acknowledged as a free man, but clothed with the dignity
and powers of American citizenship. William Lloyd Garrison has passed
from us, but the monumental character of his work and the influence of
his life shall never perish. While there are wrongs to be righted,
despots to be attacked, oppressors to be overthrown, peace to find and
advocate, and freedom a voice, the name of William Lloyd Garrison will

Those who would honor Garrison and perpetuate his memory and his fame
must meet the problems that confront them with the same courage and in
the same uncompromising spirit that Garrison met the burning questions
of the day. Those who would honor Garrison in one breath, while
compromising our manhood and advocating the surrender of our political
rights in another, not only dishonor his memory, not only trample the
flag of our country with violent and unholy feet, but they spit upon the
grave which holds the sacred dust of this chiefest of the apostles of

The status of the Negro in this country was not settled by emancipation;
the 15th Amendment to the Constitution, which it was confidently
believed would clothe him forever with political influence and power, is
more bitterly opposed to-day than it was a quarter of a century ago.
The place which the Negro is to occupy is still a vital and burning
question. The newspaper press and magazines are full of it; literature
veils its discussion of the theme under the guise of romance; political
campaigns are waged with this question as a paramount issue; it is
written into the national platform of great political parties; it tinges
legislation; it has invaded the domain of dramatic art, until to-day, it
is enacted upon the stage; philanthropy, scholarship, and religion are,
each from their point of view, more industriously engaged in its
solution than they have been in any previous generation. If the life and
labors of Garrison, and the illustrious men and women who stood with
him, have a message for the present, we should seek to interpret its
meaning and lay the lesson to heart.

The scenes have shifted, but the stage is the same; the leading
characters have not changed. We still have with us powerful influences
trying to keep the Negro down by unjust and humiliating legislation and
degrading treatment; while on the other hand, the Negro and his friends
are still contending for the same privileges and opportunities that are
freely accorded to other citizens whose skins do not happen to be black.
We, of this nation, are slow to learn the lessons taught by history; the
passions which feed on prejudice and tyranny can neither be mollified
nor checked by subjection, surrender, or compromise. Self-appointed
representatives of the Negro, his enemies and his would-be friends, are
pointing to many diverse paths, each claiming that the one they have
marked for his feet is the proper one in which he should walk. There is
but one direction in which the Negro should steadfastly look and but one
path, in which he should firmly plant his feet--that is, toward the
realization of complete manhood and equality, and the full justice that
belongs to an American citizen clothed with all of his constitutional

This is a crucial hour for the Negro American; men are seeking to-day to
fix his industrial, political, and social status under freedom as
completely as they did under slavery. As this nation continued unstable,
so long as it rested upon the foundation-stones of slavery so will it
remain insecure as long as one-eighth of its citizens can be openly
shorn of political power, while confessedly they are denied "life,
liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." We have no animosity against the
South or against Southern people. We would see the wounds left by the
War of the Rebellion healed; but we would have them healed so
effectually that they could not be trodden upon and made to bleed afresh
by inhuman barbarities and unjust legislation; we would have the wounds
of this nation bound up by the hands of those who are friendly to the
patient, so that they might not remain a political running sore. We
would have the bitter memories of the war effaced, but they cannot fade
while the spirit of slavery walks before the nation in a new guise. We,
too, would have a reunited country; but we would have the re-union to
include not only white men North and South, but a union so endearing,
because so just, as to embrace all of our fellow-countrymen, regardless
of section or of race.

* * * * *

It is not a man's right, it is his duty to support and defend his family
and his home; he should therefore resist any influence exerted to
prevent him from maintaining his dependants in comfort; while he should
oppose with his life the invader or despoiler of his home. God had
created man with a mind capable of infinite development and growth; it
is not, therefore, a man's right, it is his duty to improve his mind and
to educate his children; he should not, therefore, submit to conditions
which would compel them to grow up in ignorance. Man belongs to society;
it is his duty to make his personal contribution of the best that is
within him to the common good; he can do this only as he is given
opportunity to freely associate with his fellow-man. He should,
therefore, seek to overthrow the artificial social barriers which would
intervene to separate him from realizing the highest and best there are
within him by freedom of association. It is a man's duty to be loyal to
his country and his flag, but when his country becomes a land of
oppression and his flag an emblem of injustice and wrong, it becomes as
much his duty to attack the enemies within the nation as to resist the
foreign invader. Tyrants and tyranny everywhere should be attacked and

This is a period of transition in the relations of the Negro to this
nation. The question which America is trying to answer, and which is
must soon definitely settle, is this: _What kind of Negroes do the
American people want?_ That they must have the Negro in some relation
is no longer a question of serious debate. The Negro is here 10,000,000
strong, and, for weal or woe, he is here to stay--he is here to remain
forever. In the government he is a political factor; in education and in
wealth he is leaping forward with giant strides; he counts his taxable
property by the millions, his educated men and women by the scores of
thousands; in the South he is the backbone of industry; in every phase
of American life his presence may be noted; he is also as thoroughly
imbued with American principles and ideals as any class of people
beneath our flag. When Garrison started his fight for freedom, it was
the prevailing sentiment that the Negro could have no place in this
country save that of a slave, but he has proven himself to be more
valuable as a free man than as a slave. What kind of Negroes do the
American people want? Do they want a voteless Negro in a Republic
founded upon universal suffrage? Do they want a Negro who shall not be
permitted to participate in the government which he must support with
his treasure and defend with his blood? Do they want a Negro who shall
consent to be set apart as forming a distinct industrial class,
permitted to rise no higher than the level of serfs or peasants? Do they
want a Negro who shall accept an inferior social position, not as a
degradation, but as the just operation of the laws of caste based upon
color? Do they want a Negro who will avoid friction between the races by
consenting to occupy the place to which white men may choose to assign
him? What kind of a Negro do the American people want? Do they want a
Negro who will accept the doctrine, that however high he may rise in the
scale of character, wealth, and education, he may never hope to
associate as an equal with white men? Do white men believe that
10,000,000 blacks, after having imbibed the spirit of American
institutions, and having exercised the rights of free men for more than
a generation, will ever accept a place of permanent inferiority in the
Republic? Taught by the Declaration of Independence, sustained by the
Constitution of the United States, enlightened by the education of our
schools, this nation can no more resist the advancing tread of the hosts
of the oncoming blacks than it can bind the stars or halt the resistless
motion of the tide.

The answer which the American people may give to the question proposed
cannot be final. There is another question of greater importance which
must be answered by the Negro, and by the Negro alone: _What kind of an
American does the Negro intend to be?_ The answer to this question he
must seek and find in every field of human activity and endeavor. First,
he must answer it by negation. He does not intend to be an alien in the
land of his birth, nor an outcast in the home of his fathers. He will
not consent to his elimination as a political factor; he will refuse to
camp forever on the borders of the industrial world; as an American he
will consider that his destiny is united by indissoluble bonds with the
destiny of America forever; he will strive less to be a great Negro in
this Republic and more to be an influential and useful American. As
intelligence is one of the chief safeguards of the Republic, he will
educate his children. Knowing that a people cannot perish whose morals
are above reproach, he will ally himself on the side of the forces of
righteousness; having been the object of injustice and wrong, he will be
the foe of anarchy and the advocate of the supremacy of law. As an
American citizen, he will allow no man to protest his title, either at
home or abroad. He will insist more and more, _not only upon voting, but
upon being voted for_, to occupy any position within the gift of the
nation. As an American whose title to citizenship is without a blemish
or flaw, he will resist without compromise every law upon the
statute-books which is aimed at his degradation as a human being and
humiliation as a citizen. He will be no less ambitious and aspiring than
his fellow-countrymen; he will assert himself, not as a Negro, but as a
man; he will beat no retreat in the face of his enemies and opposers;
his gifted sons and daughters, children of genius who may be born to
him, will make their contribution to the progress of humanity on these
shores, accepting nothing but the honors and rewards that belong to
merit. What kind of an American does the Negro intend to be? He intends
to be an American who will never mar the image of God, reproach the
dignity of his manhood, or tarnish the fair title of his citizenship, by
apologizing to men or angels for associating as an equal, with some
other American who does not happen to be black. He will place the love
of country above the love of race; he will consider no task too
difficult, no sacrifice too great, in his effort to emancipate his
country from the un-Christlike feelings of race hatred and the American
bondage of prejudice. There is nothing that injustice so much respects,
that Americans so much admire, and the world so much applauds, as a man
who stands erect like a man, has the courage to speak in the tones of a
man, and to fearlessly act a man's part.

There are two views of the Negro question now at last clearly defined.
One is that the Negro should stoop to conquer; that he should accept in
silence the denial of his political rights; that he should not brave the
displeasure of white men by protesting when he is segregated in
humiliating ways upon the public carriers and in places of public
entertainment; that he may educate his children, buy land, and save
money, but he must not insist upon his children taking their place in
the body politic to which their character and intelligence entitle them;
he must not insist on ruling the land which he owns or farms; he must
have no voice as to how the money he has accumulated is to be expended
through taxation and the various forms of public improvement. There are
others who believe that the Negro owes this nation no apology for his
presence in the United States; that, being black, he is still no less a
man; that he should not yield one syllable of his title to American
citizenship; that he should refuse to be assigned to an inferior plane
by his fellow-countrymen; though foes conspire against him and powerful
friends desert him, he should refuse to abdicate his sovereignty as a
citizen, and to lay down his honor as a man.

If Americans become surfeited with wealth, haughty with the boasting
pride of race superiority, morally corrupt in the high places of honor
and of trust, enervated through the pursuit of pleasure, or the
political bondmen of some strong man plotting to seize the reins of
power, the Negro American will continue his steadfast devotion to the
flag, and the unyielding assertion of his constitutional rights, that
"this government of the people, for the people, and by the people, may
not perish from the earth."

It is so marvelous as to be like a miracle of God, to behold the
transformation that has taken place in the position of the Negro in this
land since William Lloyd Garrison first saw the light a century ago.
When the Negro had no voice, Garrison pleaded his cause; to-night the
descendants of the slave stand in Faneuil Hall, while from ocean to
ocean every foot of American soil is dedicated to freedom. The Negro
American has found his voice; he is able to speak for himself; he stands
upon this famous platform here and thinks it no presumption to declare
that he seeks nothing more, and will be satisfied with nothing less than
the full measure of American citizenship!

I feel inspired to-night. The spirits of the champions of freedom hover
near. High above the stars, Lincoln and Garrison, Sumner and Phillips,
Douglass and Lovejoy, look down to behold their prayers answered, their
labors rewarded, and their prophecies fulfilled. They were patriots; the
true saviors of a nation that esteemed them not. They have left us a
priceless heritage. Is there to be found among us now one who would so
dishonor the memory of these sainted dead; one so lost to love of
country and loyalty to his race, as to offer to sell our birthright for
a mess of pottage? When we were slaves, Garrison labored to make us
free; when our manhood was denied, he proclaimed it. Shall we in the day
of freedom be less loyal to our country and true to ourselves than were
the friends who stood for us in our night of woe? Many victories have
been won for us; there are still greater victories we must win for
ourselves. The proclamation of freedom and the bestowal of citizenship
were not the ultimate goal we started out to reach, they were but the
beginnings of progress. We, of this generation, must so act our part
that, a century hence, our children and our children's children may
honor our memory and be inspired to press on as they receive from us
untarnished the banner of freedom, of manhood, and of equality among

The Negro went aboard the ship of state when she was first launched upon
the uncertain waters of our national existence. He booked as through
passenger until she should reach "the utmost sea-mark of her farthest
sail." When those in command treated him with injustice and brutality,
he did not mutiny or rebel; when placed before the mast as a lookout, he
did not fall asleep at his post. He has helped to keep her from being
wrecked upon the rocks of treachery; he has imperiled his life by
standing manfully to his task while she outrode the fury of a
threatening sea; when the pirate-craft of rebellion bore down upon her
and sought to place the black flag of disunion at her masthead, he was
one of the first to respond when the captain called all hands up on
deck. If the enemies of liberty should ever again attempt to wreck our
ship of state, the Negro American will stand by the guns; he will not
desert her when she is sinking, but with the principles of the
Declaration of Independence nailed to the masthead, with the flag
afloat, he would prefer rather to perish with her than to be numbered
among those who deserted her when assailed by an overwhelming foe. If
she weathers the storms that beat upon her, outsails the enemies that
pursue her, avoids the rocks that threaten her, and anchors at last in
the port of her desired haven, black Americans and white Americans,
locked together in brotherly embrace, will pledge each other to remain
aboard forever on terms of equality, because they shall have learned by
experience that neither one of them can be saved, except they thus abide
in the ship.

For the present our strivings are not in vain. The injustice that leans
upon the arm of oppression for support must fall; truth perverted or
suppressed gains in momentum while it waits; generations may perish, but
humanity will survive; out of the present conflict of opinion and the
differences of race and color that divide, once the tides of immigration
have ceased to flow to our shores, this nation will evolve a people who
shall be one in purpose, one in spirit, one in destiny--a composite
American by the co-mingling of blood.



[Note 37: Speech delivered on the Centenary of his birth, February
12, 1909.]

Since the curtain rang down on the tragedy of Calvary, consummating the
vicarious sacrifice of Jesus of Nazareth, there has been no parallel in
history, sacred or profane, to the deeds of Abraham Lincoln and their
perennial aftermath.

For two hundred years this nation writhed in the pain and anguish of
travail; and as a happy sequel to this long night of suffering, in the
dawn of the nineteenth century, she bore a son who was destined to
awaken a nation's somnolent conscience to a monstrous evil; to lead a
nation through a fierce siege of fratricidal strife; to strike the
shackles of slavery from the limbs of four millions of bondsmen; to fall
a victim to the assassin's bullet; to be enshrined in the hearts of a
grateful nation; and to have an eternal abode in the pantheon of

* * * * *

Abraham Lincoln! What mighty magic is this name! Erstwhile it made the
tyrant tremble on his throne and the hearts of the down-trodden leap for
joy. Now, over the chasm of two score years, it causes the drooping
hopes of freemen to bud anew, and the smoldering embers of their
ambition to leap into flame.

With talismanic power, it swerves the darts of hate and malice aimed at
a defenseless race, so that though they wound, they do not destroy. With
antidotal efficacy, it nullifies the virus of proscription so that it
does not stagnate the blood nor paralyze the limb of an up-treading and
on-going race.

When the nation was rent in twain, Lincoln, the propitiator, counselled
conciliation. When the States of the South sought to secede, Lincoln,
the concatenator, welded them into a solid chain, one and inseparable.
When brother sought the life of brother and father that of son, Lincoln,
the pacificator, advised peace with honor. When the nation was stupefied
with the miasma of human slavery, Lincoln, the alleviator, broke its
horrid spell by diffusing through the fire of war the sweet incense of

The cynic has sneered at the Proclamation of Emancipation. The dogmatist
has called the great Emancipator a compromiser. The scholar, with the
eccentricity peculiar to genius, has solemnly declared that the slaves
were freed purely as a war necessity and not because of any
consideration for the slave. The undergraduate, in imitation of his
erudite tutors, has asserted that the freedmen owe more to the pride of
the haughty Southerner than to the magnanimity of President Lincoln. But
the mists of doubt and misconception have been so dissipated by the
sunlight of history, that we, of this generation, may clearly see the
martyred President as he really was.

* * * * *

All honor to Abraham Lincoln, the performer, not the preacher; the
friend of humanity, the friend of the North, the friend of the South,
the friend of the white man, the friend of the black man; the man whose
heart, like the Christ's, was large enough to bring within the range of
its sensibilities every human being beneath the stars. The man who, when
God's clock struck the hour, swung back on its creaking hinges the door
of opportunity that the slaves might walk over its portals into the army
and into new fields of usefulness in civil life.

One hundred years have rolled into eternity since freedom's greatest
devotee made his advent on this earth. One hundred years, as but a
moment compared with the life of nations; yet, changes in our form of
government, in the interpretation of our laws, in the relation between
the North and the South, in the status of the Negro, have been wrought,
that were beyond the wildest dreams of Lincoln. And wonderful as have
been these changes to our advantage, in the acquisition of property, in
moral and mental development, in the cultivation of sturdy manhood and
womanhood, yet, all these have come to us as a direct result of the
labors of Lincoln, who, with the ken of a prophet and the vision of a
seer, in those dark and turbulent days, wrought more nobly than he knew.

From these prodigious tasks so well performed, I adjure you, my friends,
that you catch inspiration; that you take no backward step in the
future; that you prove worthy heirs and joint heirs to the heritage of
golden opportunities bequeathed you; that you demand every right with
which his labors have endowed you; and that the righteous sentiment of
"Equal and Exact Justice" be emblazoned on a banner and flaunted in the
breezes till every foe of justice is vanquished and right rules supreme.

That you will do this, I doubt not, for in my heart of hearts, I believe
with Henry Clay that "Before you can repress the tendencies to liberty,
or the tendencies to absolute emancipation from every form of serfdom,
you must go back to the era of our independence and muzzle the cannon
which thunders its joyous return; you must penetrate the human soul and
eradicate there the love of liberty." Then, and not till then, can you
stifle the ennobling aspiration of the American Negro for the unabridged
enjoyment of every right guaranteed under the Constitution and the



_Bishop of A. M. E. Zion Church_

[Note 38: Extract from address given at Carnegie Hall, New York,
February 12, 1909.]

The distinguished person whom we pause to honor was not born great, if
to be born great means to be born in a mansion, surrounded at the start
of life with opulence, "dangled on the knee of indulgence and charmed to
sleep by the voice of liveried servants"; if this is the measure of
greatness, then Abraham Lincoln was not born great,--but if to be born
great is to be ushered into the world with embryonic qualities of heart,
elements calculated to unfold into the making of the stature of a
complete man, a manly man, a brave, a God-fearing man--a statesman equal
to the greatest emergency of a nation, then the little fellow of destiny
who made his initial bow to the goddess of light in Hardin County,
Kentucky, February 12, 1809, was born great.

If to achieve greatness is to win the hearts of one's youthful
companions, one's associates in professional life, and to merit the
confidence and genuine love of a nation to the extent of securing its
greatest honors and to perform the mightiest work of a century, then
Abraham Lincoln achieved greatness.

* * * * *

The assertion has been made that President Lincoln was not in favor of
universal freedom. I beg to take issue with this view.

A careful study of this sincere, just, and sympathetic man will serve to
show that from his earliest years he was against slavery. He declared
again and again; "If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong; I cannot
remember when I did not so think and feel."

Back in the thirties this young man clad in homespun was standing in the
slave-mart of New Orleans, watching husbands and wives being separated
forever, and children being doomed never again to look into the faces of
their parents. As the hammer of the auctioneer fell, this young
flat-boatman, with quivering lips, turned to his companion and said: "If
ever I get a chance to hit that thing (slavery), I will hit it hard, by
the Eternal God I will."

In March, 1839, he had placed upon the _House Journal of Illinois_ a
formal protest against pro-slavery resolutions which he could get but
one other member beside himself to sign. Long before he was made
President, in a speech at Charleston, Illinois, he said: "Yes we will
speak for freedom, and against slavery, as long as the Constitution of
our country guarantees free speech, until everywhere on this wide land
the sun shall shine, and the rain shall fall, and the winds shall blow
upon no man who goes forth to unrequited toil."

While in Congress in 1848 he offered a bill to abolish slavery in the
District of Columbia. It was his opinion that Congress had control over
the institution of slavery in the District of Columbia and the
territories, and he evidenced his desire for the freedom of the slaves
by offering a bill to abolish it in the District, and he afterwards
strenuously advocated the elimination of slavery from the territories.

In 1864, about the time of the repeal of the Fugitive Slave Law,
President Lincoln said to some gentlemen from the West: "There have been
men base enough to propose to me to return to slavery our black warriors
of Port Hudson and Olustee, and thus win the respect of the masters they
fought. Should I do so, I should deserve to be damned in time and

Through all the mighty struggle of the Civil War when bowed in sorrow,
and when it was truly said of him "That he was a man of sorrows and
acquainted with grief," he was ever heard to say, "It is my desire that
all men be free."

If President Lincoln were not in favor of the freedom of the slaves, why
did he write the Emancipation Proclamation without the knowledge of his
Cabinet and, when reading it to them, informed them that he did not do
so to have them make any changes, but simply to apprise them of its
contents? I answer, because he saw the time had come, the opportune time
for which he had longed, when he, as President of these United States,
could free the slaves. The South was so certain that it was Mr.
Lincoln's intention to liberate the slaves, that, upon his election as
President, they seceded from the Union. They felt that the institution
which they had struggled so long to maintain was doomed.

His famous letter to Horace Greeley, so diplomatically written, shows
him to be in favor of the emancipation of slaves. Said he; "My paramount
object is to save the Union, and not either to save or destroy slavery.
If I could save the Union without freeing any slaves I would do it; if I
could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could do
it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that. I
shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors, and I shall adopt
new views as fast as they shall appear to be true views. I have here
stated my purpose according to my views of official duty, and I intend
no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men
everywhere could be free."

Had President Lincoln not desired the freedom of the slaves would he
have written this last sentence?

Professor Pickens, of Talladega College, says: "He was a patriot
statesman; although he abhored slavery in his own inclination, he was
wise enough to see that the question of slavery was subordinate to the
immediate object of saving the Union. If slavery is not wrong, nothing
is wrong; he declared as his private opinion; but it was his public duty
and his oath to save the Union, regardless of slavery. His logic and
clear seizure of the main point stood him in good stead against the
over-zealous Abolitionists on the one hand, while on the other hand, as
soon as the interests of Negro freedom and the interests of the Union
coincided, the same unchanged and consistent logic answered those who
assailed him on constitutional grounds."

Mr. Lincoln believed that the Constitution protected slavery in the
States wherein it existed, and his aim was to let it alone where it had
a constitutional right to exist. Not because he thought slavery right,
but because of his respect for the law.

His original position was that, since slavery was protected by the law,
the friends of freedom would have to abide their time and continue to
create sentiment sufficient to change the law and thus overthrow the
iniquitous institution. This is the only interpretation that can be put
upon his doctrine. "The house divided against itself."

Is it reasonable to think that a man so thoughtful and sincere as was
Mr. Lincoln could give a life to the advocacy of the freedom of the
slaves, and in his heart not be in favor of their liberation. Mr.
Lincoln often expressed ideas on the emancipation calculated to
jeopardize his political future, which he would not have done but for
the fact that in his heart of hearts he was committed to the cause of

The slaves hailed him as their savior, which he proved to be by
emancipating 4,000,000 of them, and he will be held in loving
remembrance by Afro-Americans as long as the world shall stand.

It is fitting that we assemble ourselves together on the anniversary of
his birth to honor his memory, and tell of his noble deeds to the rising

President Lincoln was truly a great man; a giant in intellect, a
peerless diplomat, a fearless advocate of the rights of humanity and a
wise ruler. In council he stood head and shoulders above the members of
his Cabinet and other advisers, notwithstanding he was surrounded by
some of the greatest scholars and statesmen of his time.

Allow me to apply to Lincoln the words of Wendell Phillips in his
address "Toussaint L'Ouverture":

"Lincoln was greater than Cæsar; Cæsar fought to further his ambition
and to extend a great empire. Lincoln was an advocate of principle,
justice, and fair play. He was greater than Alexander; Alexander fought
for glory--to conquer all the world, all at the sacrifice of happy homes
and the desolation and ruin of countries. Lincoln sacrificed comfort and
ease to save a nation and liberate an enslaved people. He was greater
than Napoleon; Napoleon made wives to be widows, and children to be
fatherless and homeless, and drenched Europe and Egypt in blood for fame
and the desire to found a greater empire than the Roman dynasty; but
Lincoln perished because he dared to defend an oppressed people."

When the last scarred veteran shall gather around the last campfire and
shall rehearse stories of valor, he will close his tale of sorrow with
the name of Lincoln.

When the last poet shall compose his last poem on America's greatest
struggle,--yea of the victories of Vicksburg, Fort Donaldson, Lookout
Mountain, Gettysburg, Appomattox, Petersburg, and the fall of Richmond,
he will close it by paying a tribute to the memory of the sainted

When the last statesman of the world shall pronounce a farewell anathema
upon the world's oppression, when he shall write the names of those
foremost in the work of emancipation, after he shall have written the
name of Moses,--long ere he reaches the name of Wilberforce or Clarkson,
he shall have written high on the scroll of fame the name of Lincoln.

When the last flag bearing the "Stars and Stripes" shall wave over this
great commonwealth, telling of its glory and tremendous influence, on
the wings of the eagle upon the staff of that flag will be written for
her to bear away on the eternal breezes the name of the immortal
Lincoln,--the savior of his country, the Emancipator of its people.

* * * * *

The dying legacy bequeathed to the American nation by the martyred
Lincoln was a united country and a free people. It gave us a nation
which to-day stands first in the galaxy of the nations of the world--in
character, thought, wealth, and all the qualities which make for the
highest civilizations--a glorious country, whose natural resources stand

All honor to Mr. Lincoln, the nation's Chieftain, the giant of the
conflict, the statesman of the age, the immortal Emancipator; and all
honor to the men who wore the blue, both white and black; and all honor
to the men and women who gave their sons to the cause and furnished the
sinews of war; and all praise be to the God of Heaven who was behind
the conflict controlling all.

If we would properly honor this great and good man we must finish the
work which he so nobly began,--the lifting up of the Negro race to the
highest point of civilization. This can be accomplished; first, by being
good and loyal citizens ourselves, and by teaching our children to be
the same.

The groundwork of our material advancement is industry. As a race we are
generally industrious, but we need to become more skillfully so.
Unskilled labor cannot compete with skilled labor, neither North or
South. In the past you gave us certain positions as the result of
sympathy, not because we could perform the work as skillfully as others.

The sentiment which actuated you to help us was a noble one, but that
kind of sentiment is a thing of the past; now we are required to stand
or fall according to our merits. When goods are to be manufactured,
machines constructed, houses and bridges built, clothing fashioned, or
any sort of work performed, none but skilled workmen are considered;
there are a great number of employers that care but little about the
color of the workmen; with them the question is, Can he do the work?

We must continue the struggle for our civil and political rights. I have
no sympathy with that class of leaders who are advising the Negro to
eschew politics in deference to color prejudice.

Does it make for permanent peace to deny to millions of citizens their
political rights when they are equal to the average electorate in
intelligence and character? Fitness, and not color or previous condition
of servitude, should be the standard of recognition in political
matters. Indeed the Negro should not be denied any civil or political
right on account of his color, and to the extent this is done there is
bound to be disquietude in the nation.

We have already seen that temporizing with slavery at the formation of
the Union resulted in a hundred years of strife and bitterness, and
finally brought on devastation and death. And may we not profit by this
bitter experience? The enlightened American conscience will not tolerate
injustice forever. The same spirit of liberty and fair play which
enveloped the nation in the days of Mr. Lincoln and that was recognized
by his astute mind, clear to his mental vision and so profoundly
appreciated by his keen sense of justice and which he had the courage to
foster against all opposition is abroad in our land to-day, will
ultimately triumph.

Mr. Lincoln was the first to suggest to his party the enfranchisement of
the Negro. He wrote Governor Hahn, of Louisiana, advising that the
ballot should be given to the colored man; said he, "Let in, as for
instance, the very intelligent and especially those who have fought
gallantly in our ranks. They would probably help in some trying time in
the future to keep the jewel of liberty in the family of freedom."

It seems to me right and proper on this memorable day, when the nation
has stopped to consider the work of the man above all others who started
the Negro on his upward way, that we should appeal to the enlightened
conscience of the nation, to unloose further the fetters which bind the
black man, especially the industrial bands placed upon him in the North.
I appeal to the white people of the South, the sentiment-makers of that
section, to create sentiment in favor of law and order, and that they
demand a cessation of lynchings. I appeal to the legislature of the
South to allow the civil and political door of hope to remain open to my
people, and in all things which make for quietness and permanent peace,
let us be brethren.

The Negro should no longer be considered a serf, but a citizen of this
glorious Republic which both white and black alike have done so much to

Mr. Edwin D. Mead, in the _New York Independent_ of January 21, 1909,
says, "Has the country been faithful to Lincoln's memory and task? Has
the evolution of emancipation been pushed with proper persistence and
earnestness? Are we ceasing our discrimination against men because they
are black? It is not a question put by North to South. It is a question
put to Springfield, Illinois, the old home of Lincoln himself, as
directly as to men in Maryland busy with their pitiful disfranchising
chicanery." To the still lingering cry of "black men down" this salutary
Commemoration rings back, the "all men up," whose echoes after forty
years were growing faint in too many American hearts.

Had they not grown faint in many, the recent words of Justice Harlan, so
like Lincoln's own, upon the Berea College decision confirming the
Kentucky law that, however, they themselves desired it, and even in
private institutions, a black boy and a white boy may not study together
the rule of three or the law of gravitation, the Golden Rule, or the
Emancipation Proclamation,--would have aroused a vastly profounder and
louder response.

"If the views of the highest court of Kentucky be sound, that
commonwealth may, without infringing on the Constitution of the United
States, forbid the association in the same private school of pupils of
the Anglo-Saxon and Latin races respectively, or pupils of Christian and
Jewish faith respectively. Have we become so inoculated with prejudice
of race that any American government professedly based on the principles
of freedom and charged with the protection of all citizens alike can
make distinctions between such citizens in the manner of their voluntary
meeting for innocent purposes, simply because of their respective races?
If the court be right, then the State may make it a crime for white and
colored persons to frequent the same market-places at the same time or
to appear in an assemblage of citizens convened to consider questions of
a public or political nature, in which all citizens without regard to
race are equally interested; and other illustrations would show the
mischievous, not to say cruel, character of the statute in question, and
how inconsistent such legislation is with the principle of the equality
of citizens before the law."

Mr. Mead further says that Abraham Lincoln was called upon to make his
memorable and mighty protest with reference to a single race. In our
time the problem becomes vastly more complex and pressing.

But, however complex, there is but one way of solving it--the simple,
Christian, fraternal way. It is well for us that the Lincoln centennial
comes to say this to us persuasively and commandingly.



[Note 39: Delivered, in appreciation of his service on behalf of the
members of Companies A, B and C, 25th Infantry, March 6th, 1909, at
Metropolitan A. M. E. Church, Washington, D. C.]

_The Honorable Joseph Benson Foraker, and Colored Citizens:_

A little more than two years ago the country was startled one November
morning by a Presidential order for which there is no precedent in the
history of the government. It was an act not only without precedent,
but, as it appeared at the time to many Americans and as it appears to
them now for that matter, not warranted either by law or justice. The
punishment which that order inflicted on a whole battalion of American
soldiers, without trial of any kind seemed unmerited and cruel in the
highest degree, and a wanton abuse of executive power.

The history of this case is known of all men, thanks and yet again
thanks and love without limit to the illustrious man whom we have met to
honor to-night. For it is now and it must forever remain the history of
the Black Battalion and of Senator Foraker. It is the history of the
most masterly and heroic struggle in defense of the rights and liberties
of the individual citizen against executive usurpation and oppression
which this country has witnessed for a generation.

The act of the President, while it affected the rights of all Americans,
bore with peculiar hardship, with crushing injustice, on the one hundred
and sixty-seven men of the Black Battalion who were discharged from the
Army without honor and on a mere assumption of their guilt in the
"Brownsville" affray.

That act was a sad blow to the colored race of the country likewise, and
fell upon them with cruel surprise. For they are people without many
friends and are hard pressed in this boasted land of the free and home
of the brave. They are hard pressed in every part of the Republic by an
increasing race prejudice, by a bitter colorphobia which forgets that
they are weak, forgets their claim at the hands of a Christian nation to
just and equal treatment to the end that they may do and become as other
men with a race and color different from their own. Blows they are
receiving thick and fast from their enemies whose name is legion, blows
against their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness in
the South and in the North. We are accustomed as a race to such blows.
Cruel as they are and hard to bear, yet they do not take us by surprise.
For we have learned by long and bitter experience to look for them from
a people who loudly proclaim, in season and out, their belief in the
principles of democracy and of Christianity. But when an old friend
turns against us, and strikes too like an ancient enemy, such a blow is
more grievous to bear, and seems crueler than death itself. The blow of
an old friend is always the unkindest blow of all. One is never prepared
for it, and when it falls the wound which it inflicts cuts deeper than
flesh and blood, for the iron of it enters the soul itself. And so it
happened to us, when, two years ago, the cruel wrong of that executive
order was done to our brave boys in blue by the hand of a trusted
friend, the apostle of the "square deal."

Who can describe the shock of that first terrible amazement, the hot
indignation felt by a race at the huge injustice, at the Draconian
severity of that order which expelled from the American Army one hundred
and sixty-seven men without trial of any kind and on a mere suspicion of
their guilt, and which made them forever ineligible to employment
thereafter in any department of the National Government, whether on its
civil, military, or naval side, and the deep consternation which filled
the homes of every colored man in the land--North and South alike? I for
one can not describe those feelings, although I experienced in unison
with the race at the time the amazement, the indignation, and the
consternation which swept us together and caused us to feel and speak
and act as one man under the wrong done us by the hand of an old friend
whose golden words of hope and fair play we had sometime written in
letters of light on the tablets of our hearts. It is no slight matter
for any man, whether he be President or private citizen, so to wound the
sense of right of a whole race, so to shock its faith in the justice
and righteousness of its rulers and government, as that cruel blunder of
the President of the United States produced among the colored people of
the entire country.

We lifted up our voice as the voice of many waters from one end of the
land to the other in loud protest against the wrong, in stern
denunciation of it, and the press of the North came nobly to our
assistance and swelled the volume of our protest and denunciation. But
alas, all this volume of protest and denunciation on the part of the
race and of the press would have passed over the nation and the
Government like a summer storm of wind and rain--so little do our
outcries against injustice and oppression excite the attention and
sympathy of the Republic any more--had there not arisen in the Senate of
the United States a man for the hour, had not God raised him up to
defend his little ones against the slings and arrows of a sleepless
energy, of an almost omnipotent power seated in the highest place of the
Government. It was the genius, the grandeur of soul of a great man who
was able to gather into thunderbolt after thunderbolt all the sense of
outraged justice on the part of race and press, and to hurl them with
marvelous precision and overwhelming might against that cruel executive
order and the hosts of words and messages and other hordes of blood-dyed
epithets which the President marshalled and sent forth from time to time
in defense of his Draconian decree. If there was sleepless energy in the
White House, there was an energy just as sleepless on the floor of the
Senate. The almost omnipotent power wielded for the destruction of the
Black Battalion by the formidable occupant of the executive mansion was
met and matched, ay, overmatched again and again by an omnipotence in
discussion which a just cause and genius as orator, lawyer, and debater
of the first rank could alone have put into the strong right arm of the
brave redresser of a race's wrongs on the floor of the Senate. For more
than two years he carried the case of the Black Battalion in his big and
tireless brain, in his big and gentle heart, as a mother carries under
her bosom her unborn babe. God alone knows what sums of money, what deep
thought and solicitude, what unflagging energy, what unceasing labor, he
spent in his holy and self-imposed task to right the wrongs of those
helpless and persecuted men. In the Senate their case pursued him like a
shadow, and at home it sat with him like a ghost in his library, and
slept for a few hours only when the great brain slept and the generous
heart rested from the pain which was torturing it. Sir, did you know
what love went out to you during those tremendous months of toil and
struggle, and what prayers from the grateful hearts of ten millions of

Yes, he was one man against the whole power of the Administration and
all that that meant. Perhaps we do not fully understand what a colossal
power that was to confront and grapple with. Almost single-handed he met
that power and threw it again and again in the arena of debate. Every
speech he made in behalf of his clients, whether on the floor of the
Senate or outside of that body, was as terrible as an army with banners
to the enemies of the Black Battalion who had now, alas, become his
enemies too, and who were bent on the destruction of both, the defender
and the defended alike. But he did not hesitate or quail before that
power and the danger which threatened his political life. As the battle
thickened and perils gathered fast about his head he fought the fight of
the Black Battalion as few men in the history of the Republic have ever
fought for the weak, for a just cause against organized power and
oppression in the high places of the Government. Senator Foraker was one
man, but Senator Foraker was a host in himself. We know this, but the
enemies of the Black Battalion know it better than we do, for wherever
they appeared on the field of action during those two years, whether
with their sappers and miners or assaulting columns, there they found
him alert, dauntless, invincible--their sappers and miners hoisted with
their own petard, their assaulting columns routed and driven to cover
before the withering, the deadly fire from the flashing cannon of his
facts, his logic, his law, and his eloquence. Sir, God knows that I
would rather have fought the fight which you fought so gloriously than
be a Senator of the United States, day, than be President of the
Republic itself. For it is better to be a brave and just and true man
than to be either Senator or President, or both.

"Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his
friends." This is what Senator Foraker has done for the Black Battalion
and for the principles of law and liberty which underlie their case. He
has given his political life, his seat in the Senate, all the honor and
power which were his had he chosen to defend the order of the
President, discharging those one hundred and sixty-seven men without
trial of any kind from the Army which their valor had helped to make
glorious--instead of the soldiers whom he did not know but whose pitiful
case, whose unjust and cruel punishment, enlisted the sympathy of his
great heart and the masterly labors of his tireless brain. Yes, I
repeat, and do not let it ever be forgotten by us as a race, that
Senator Foraker might to-day be his own successor in the United States
Senate had he chosen to play in the "Brownsville" affair the part of
defender of President Roosevelt's wanton abuse and usurpation of
executive power, instead of taking the side of the Black Battalion and
the fundamental principle of our law and Constitution that each man
accused of crime is entitled to trial before he is condemned and
punished. He chose the side of the weak, of justice, and the
Constitution in this great struggle, and not that of power and the
Administration. This was the sin which brought upon him all the wrath of
that power and of that Administration, but of which all good men and
true absolve and for which they honor him, and for which, besides, a
grateful race enshrines him in its heart of hearts. For he preferred to
suffer affliction with the Black Battalion and to suffer defeat for the
Senatorship rather than enjoy power and office as the price of his
desertion of the cause of those helpless men.

No man can give as much as Senator Foraker has given to a just cause,
give as generously, as unselfishly, gloriously as he has given of his
very self in this "Brownsville" case and lose that which is best
striving for in life. He may lose place in the Government and power as
a political leader. But what are these but the ephemera of man's fevered
existence and strivings here below? "What shadows we are," Burke said on
a memorable occasion in his contest for a seat in Parliament, "and what
shadows we pursue." Office, power, popularity; what are they but shadows
of passing clouds which a breath blows to us and a breath blows from us
again. No man loses anything in reality when he loses such fleeting,
such shadowy possessions. But if for the sake of them he loses truth,
justice, goodness, his love of the right and his hatred of the wrong,
his sympathy for the oppressed, his passion to help God's little ones,
such a man has bartered away his soul, the immortal part of him for a
rood of grass, which to-day flourisheth and to-morrow withereth and is
cast into the oven of all transitory and perishable possessions.

How many men who now hold seats in the United States Senate or the House
of Representatives do we even know the names of? How many of all that
long procession of them who have been passing for more than a century
though those halls of power have we so much as heard the names of? They
have filed through those stately chambers to dusty death and oblivion,
and the places which knew them once know them no more forever. A few
names only are remembered among all the multitude of them, not because
of the places they occupied or the power they wielded, but because while
in those houses they chose the better part--chose not to busy themselves
with shadows, with the things which perish, but seized and held fast to
the eternal verities of justice and freedom and human brotherhood. The
vast majority of them magnified their brief authority and neglected the
opportunity which their offices offered them to link their names and
official lives with some noble movement or measure for the betterment of
their kind, for the lifting up of those who were down, the strengthening
of those who were weak, the succor of those who were hard pressed by
man's inhumanity to man.

It is beautiful to defend those who can not defend themselves, to lift
up the weak, to succor those who are ready to perish. It is heroic,
divine, when the doing so involves peril and sacrifice of self. It is
the essence of the Gospel preached and lived by one who spoke and lived
as never man spoke and lived. It is simple and undefiled Christianity.
Nothing avails to make Senator or President or people Christian but just
this one thing--not race or color or creed, not learning and wealth and
civilization--but kindness to God's poor, to Christ's little ones. Did
you feed them when they were hungry; did you give them to drink when
they were thirsty; did you visit and comfort them when they were in
prison? Those who do these things to the humblest and the blackest of
these little ones of the Republic have done them unto the divine Master,
are in truth His disciples; and those who do them not are not His
followers, whatever may be their profession, but quite the contrary.
They have no part or lot with Him but belong to the evil forces of the
world which are forever opposing the coming of His righteous Kingdom on
earth when all men shall be brothers, when the strong shall everywhere
bear the burdens of the weak.

Inasmuch as William Lloyd Garrison, Charles Sumner, Wendell Phillips,
John Brown, and Abraham Lincoln did it to the least of His little ones
in this Republic, they did it unto Him. They are a goodly company, the
glorious company of the elect of the Republic, its prophets, its
priests, and its kings. And, Sir, inasmuch as you, too, did it to the
Black Battalion in their dire need, you did it unto Christ, and you are
now henceforth and forevermore to enter into the supreme joy of that
supreme service and sacrifice. You lost, Sir, your seat in the Senate,
it is true, but you have won an enduring place in a race's heart, its
enduring love and gratitude, and the plaudit of the divine Master, "Well
done, good and faithful servant," uttered from the lips of all good men
and true the country over.



_I Cor. 16:13. "Watch ye, stand fast in the faith,
quit you like men, be strong."_

[Note 40: A discourse delivered in the Fifteenth Street Presbyterian
Church, Washington, D. C., Sunday, March 7, 1909.]

It has been my custom for many years to speak during the inaugural week
on some phase of the race question. I have done it because usually at
such times there are representatives of our race here from all parts of
the country, and an opportunity is thus afforded of reaching a larger
number than would be possible at any other time. Such occasions, it
seems to me, should be utilized in the interest of the race, in the
discussion of matters pertaining to the race. The inauguration of a
President is an event in which the whole nation is interested, and which
emphasizes the fact of citizenship, as perhaps nothing else does, coming
as it does after the election, and growing out of it. On such occasions
it is well for us, therefore, especially at this juncture of our
history, not to be unmindful of our own citizenship, of our own status
in the body politic.

We have just been celebrating, all over the country, the centennial of
the birth of Abraham Lincoln, our great war President, and this
inauguration coming so soon after, makes it especially a good time to
talk about some of the questions which grew out of the war, and which
were settled by it. And this is what I want to do this morning.

Over forty years ago the great struggle ended, the "irrepressible
conflict" came to a close. It marked an epoch in the history of our
country, and in the history of the black race in this country. Certain
great questions, which had agitated the country for years, were settled,
and settled for all time.

* * * * *

It is now no longer a question as to whether we are a nation, or a
confederation of sovereign and independent States. That question is
settled, and settled once for all by the issue of the War. It is not
likely that any Southern State will ever again attempt to withdraw from
the Union, or to act on the assumption that it has the right to do so.
Even if it is foolish enough to entertain such a view, it will be sure
never again to act upon it. The issue of the War has removed forever
from the field of serious discussion this question of the right of a
State to secede. The ghost of secession will never again arise to
disturb the peace of the Union. The Stars and Stripes, the old flag,
will float, as long as it floats, over all these States, from the
Atlantic to the Pacific, from the Lakes to the Gulf. If the time ever
comes when we shall go to pieces, it will not be from any desire or
disposition on the part of the States to pull apart, but from inward
corruption, from the disregard of right principles, from the spirit of
greed, from the narrowing lust of gold, from losing sight of the fact
that "righteousness exalteth a nation, but that sin is a reproach to
any people." It is here where our real danger lies--not in the secession
of States from the Union, but in the secession of the Union itself from
the great and immutable principles of right, of justice, of fair play
for all regardless of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
The fact that the Union has been saved, that these rebellious States
have been brought back into it, will amount to nothing unless it can be
saved from this still greater peril that threatens it. The secession of
the Southern States in 1860 was a small matter compared with the
secession of the Union itself from the great principles enunciated in
the Declaration of Independence, in the Golden Rule, in the Ten
Commandments, in the Sermon on the Mount. Unless we hold, and hold
firmly to these great fundamental principles of righteousness, of
social, political, and economic wisdom, our Union, as Mr. Garrison
expressed it, will be "only a covenant with death and an agreement with
hell." If it continues to exist it will be a curse, and not a blessing.

Our brave boys in blue, whose bodies lie moldering in the grave, but
whose souls are marching on, settled the question of the Union of the
States. It is for the patriotic men who are living to-day, and those who
are to follow in their footsteps, to deal with this larger and more
important question. It isn't enough that these States are held together,
they must be held together on right principles--principles of justice,
of equity, of fair play, of equality before the law for all alike.
Whether there is patriotism, political wisdom, moral insight and stamina
enough to lead men to forget their differences on minor matters and to
unite their forces for the attainment of this greater and more important
end, remains to be seen. There are so many who are controlled by their
petty prejudices, whose views are so narrow and contracted, that they
seem incapable of appreciating the things of prime importance, the
things that are fundamental in the life of the nation, and upon which
its future peace and prosperity depend. The fear of rebellion is forever
gone. It is not so, however, with regard to the danger of which I am
speaking--the danger of the nation divorcing itself from sound political
and moral principles.

* * * * *

In the scheme of citizenship of our country for years following the
close of the war the Negro had no part; and he had no part because he
was looked upon as an inferior. "Subordination to the superior race is
declared to be his natural and moral condition." His inferiority was
asserted to be a "great physical, philosophical, and moral truth."

And this is exactly the Southern view to-day; and is exactly the
programme to which it is committed. Its whole attitude to-day is in
harmony with the great principle upon which the Southern Confederacy was
founded--the non-recognition of the Negro as an equal in any
respect--socially, civilly, politically. The South holds to this view
just as tenaciously to-day as it did when Mr. Stephens made his Great
Cornerstone Speech in 1861. The Ku Klux Klan, the White Caps, the Red
Shirt Brigade, tissue ballots, the revised constitutions with their
grandfather clauses, Jim Crow Car legislation, the persistent effort of
the South to disfranchise the Negro--all these things have grown out of
the idea that the rightful place of the Negro is that of subordination
to the white man, that he has no rightful place in the body politic.

* * * * *

But I cannot believe that the nation is always going to leave its loyal
black citizens to be despoiled of their civil and political rights by
the men who sought to destroy the Union. A better day is coming, and
coming soon, I trust.

While we are waiting, however, for the nation to come to its
senses--waiting for a revival of the spirit of justice and of true
democracy in the land--it is important for us to remember that much,
very much, will depend upon ourselves. In the passage of Scripture read
in our hearing at the beginning of this discourse, three things we are
exhorted to do, and must do, if we are ever to secure our rights in this
land: We are exhorted to be watchful. "Watch ye," is the exhortation. We
are to be on our guard. "Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty."
There are enemies ever about us and are ever plotting our ruin--enemies
within the race and without it. We have got to live in the consciousness
of this fact. If we assume that all is well, that there is nothing to
fear, and so relax our vigilance, so cease to be watchful, we need not
be surprised if our enemies get the better of us, if we are worsted in
the conflict.

(2) We are exhorted to stand fast in the faith. In the faith we feel
that, as American citizens, we are entitled to the same rights and
privileges as other citizens of the Republic. In this faith we are to
stand, and stand fast. We are not to give it up; we are not to allow
anyone, white or black, friend or foe, to induce us to retreat a single
inch from this position.

(3) We are exhorted to quit ourselves like men, to be strong. And by
this, I understand, is meant that we are to stand up in a manly way for
our rights; that we are to seek by every honorable means the full
enjoyment of our rights. It is still true--

    "Who would be free himself must strike the blow."

And, if we are ever to be free from invidious distinctions in this
country, based upon race, color, previous condition, we have got to be
alive, wide-awake to our own interest. If we are not, we have no right
to expect others to be; we have no right to expect anything but failure,
but defeat. And we deserve defeat if ours is the spirit of indifference,
of unconcern. We are not going to secure our rights in this land without
a struggle. We have got to contend, and contend earnestly, for what
belongs to us. Victory isn't coming in any other way. No silent
acquiescence on our part in the wrongs from which we are suffering,
contrary to law; no giving of ourselves merely to the work of improving
our condition, materially, intellectually morally, spiritually, however
zealously pursued, is going to bring relief. We have got, in addition to
the effort we are making to improve ourselves, to keep up the
agitation, and keep it up until right triumphs and wrong is put down. A
programme of silence on the part of the race is a fool's programme.
Reforms, changes in public sentiment, the righting of wrongs, are never
effected in that way; and our wrongs will never be. A race that sits
quietly down and rests in sweet content in the midst of the wrongs from
which it is suffering is not worth contending for, is not worth saving.

This is not true of this race, however. We are not sitting down in sweet
content, let it be said to our credit. I thank God from the bottom of my
heart for these mutterings of discontent that are heard in all parts of
the land. The fact that we are dissatisfied with present conditions, and
that we are becoming more and more so, shows that we are growing in
manhood, in self-respect, in the qualities that will enable us to win
out in the end. It is our duty to keep up the agitation for our rights,
not only for our sakes, but also for the sake of the nation at large. It
would not only be against our own interest not to do so, but it would be
unpatriotic for us quietly to acquiesce in the present condition of
things, for it is a wrong condition of things. If justice sleeps in this
land, let it not be because we have helped to lull it to sleep by our
silence, our indifference; let it not be from lack of effort on our part
to arouse it from its slumbers. Elijah said to the prophets of Baal,
while they were crying to their god, "Peradventure he sleepeth." And it
may be that he was asleep; but it was not their fault that he continued
asleep, for they kept up a continual uproar about his altar. And so
here, sleeping Justice in this land may go on slumbering, but let us see
to it that it is due to no fault of ours. Even Baalam's ass cried out in
protest when smitten by his brutal master, and God gave him the power to
cry out, endowed him miraculously with speech in which to voice his

It is not necessary for God to work a miracle to enable us to protest
against our wrong; He has already given us the power. Let us see to it
that we use it. If we are wise we will be able to take care of
ourselves. If we are not wise, however, if we adopt the policy of
silence, and if we continue to feel that it is our duty to follow
blindly, slavishly, any one political party, we will receive only such
treatment as is accorded to slaves, and will go on pleading for our
rights in vain. The only wise course for us to pursue is to keep on
agitating, and to cast our votes where they will tell most for the race.
As to what party we affiliate with is a matter of no importance
whatever; the important thing is our rights. And until we recognize that
fact, and act upon it, we will be the football of all political parties.
John Boyle O'Reilly, in speaking on the race question years ago, said:
"If I were a colored man I should use parties as I would a club--to
break down prejudice against my people. I shouldn't talk about being
true to any party, except so far as that party was true to me. Parties
care nothing for you, only to use you. You should use parties; the
highest party you have in this country is your own manhood. That is the
thing in danger from all parties; that is the thing that every colored
man is bound in duty to himself and his children to defend and protect."
And that is good advice. It embodies the highest political wisdom for us
as a people.

The exhortation of the text is, "Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit
you like men, be strong." And this is the message that I bring to you,
who are here this morning, and to the members of our race all over the
country. We must be watchful; we must hold firmly to our faith in our
citizenship, and in our rights as citizens; and we must act the part of
men in the maintenance of those rights. In the end the victory is sure
to be ours. The right is bound, sooner or later, to triumph.

    "Before the monstrous wrong he sits him down--
    One man against a stone-walled city of sin.
    For centuries those walls have been a-building;
    Smooth porphyry, they slope and coldly glass
    The flying storm and wheeling sun.

    "No chinks, no crevice, lets the thinnest arrow in.
    He fights alone, and from the cloudy ramparts
    A thousand evil faces gibe and jeer him.
    Let him lie down and die; what is the right
    And where is justice in a world like this?

    "But by and by earth shakes herself, impatient;
    And down, in one great roar of ruin, crash
    Watch-tower and citadel and battlements.
    When the red dust has cleared, the lonely soldier
    Stands with strange thoughts beneath the friendly stars."

And so, in the end, will it be with this great evil of race prejudice
against which we are contending in this country, if, like the lonely
soldier, we show the same earnestness, the same patient determination,
the same invincible courage. A better day is coming; but we have got to
help to bring it about. It isn't coming independently of our efforts,
and it isn't coming by quietly, timidly, cowardly acquiescing in our



_Founder and President of the National Religious Training School at
Durham, N. C._

[Note 41: An address delivered before the young men of the National
Religious Training School, Durham, N. C.]

_Students and Friends:_

I am not unmindful of the vast opportunity that is mine as I stand
before young men. The opportunity is great, but the responsibility is
greater. It was the thought of the responsibility that decided me to
speak on the subject, "Is the Game Worth the Candle?"; the meaning
simplified being--Is the object pursued worth the price paid for its

Once during an all-night ride en route for Arkansas in the latter part
of the year just closed, I fell into a retrospective mood, and the
scroll of the past years unfolded itself before my memory, and as I
reviewed it and marked the possibilities which had passed with the
years, life took on even a greater aspect than it had already possessed.
I shall not discuss my life, but life with its probabilities and
possibilities of power and achievement; life in its earnestness and life
that is merely drifting with the tide, of no benefit to itself or to

A man's life depends upon his emotions, his aspirations, his

A young man, somebody's son, starts out with the determination that the
world is indebted to him for a good time. "Dollars were made to spend. I
am young, and every man must sow his wild oats and then settle down. I
want to be a 'hail fellow well met' with every one." So he is ever ready
to drink a social glass, to give a pun and to be a "masher on the
girls." With this determination uppermost in his life purpose he starts
out to be a good-timer. Perhaps some mother expects to hear great things
of her boy, some father's hopes are centered in him, but what does that
matter? "I am a good-timer." From one gayety to another, from one glass
to another, from one sin to another, and the good-timer at last is
broken in health, deserted by friends, and left alone to die. Thus the
"man about town" passes off the stage. When you ask some of his friends
about him, the answer is, "Oh, John was all right, but he lived too
fast. I like good time as well as anyone, but I could not keep up with
John." Was the game worth the candle?

Two pictures come before my mind; two cousins, both of them young men.
One started out early in life with the determination of getting along
"easy," shirking work, and looking for a soft snap. His motto was, "The
world owes me a living, and I am going to get mine." He was employed
first by one firm and then by another; if anything that he considered
hard came along, he would pay another fellow to do the work and he "took
things easy." It was not long before no one would hire him. He
continued to hold the idea that the world was indebted to him and
furthermore, he arrogated a belief that what another man had accumulated
he could borrow without his knowledge. He forged another's name, was
detected, and sentenced to the penitentiary and is now wearing the badge
of felony and shame--the convicts' stripes. Young men, the world owes no
man a living, but those who work faithfully and make contributions to
the happiness of mankind and the advancement of civilization. These will
ever be honored and rewarded. Is the game worth the candle?

The other cousin started out with a determination altogether different.
He believed with Lord Brougham, that if he were a bootblack, he would
strive to be the best bootblack in England. He began in a store as a
window-washer, and washed windows so well that they sparkled like
diamonds under the sun. As a clerk, no customer was too insignificant to
be greeted with a smile or pleasant word; no task was too great for him
to attempt. Thus step by step, he advanced, each day bringing new duties
and difficulties but each day also bringing new strength and
determination to master them, and to-day that cousin is a man of wealth
and an honored citizen, blessed too, with a happy home.

Some young men start life with the idea that every dollar made requires
that one dollar and a half shall be spent; in order to be noticed they
must make a big show, give big dinners, carriage drives, and parties,
invite friends to the theatres, and have a "swell" time; must do like
Mr. "So-and-So." They forget in their desire to copy, that Mr.
"So-and-so," their pattern, has already made his fortune; that he began
to save before he began to spend. But no, his name appears often in the
papers and they think also that theirs must. So they begin their
careers. A few years pass. The young men marry; their debts begin to
accumulate and to press them, their countenances are always woe-begone;
where once were smiles, now are frowns, and the homes are pictures of
gloom and shadows. The lesson is plain.

Debt is the greatest burden that can be put upon a man; it makes him
afraid to look honest men in the face. No man can be a leader in the
fullest sense who is burdened by a great debt. If there is any young men
in the audience who is spending more than he is making let him ask
himself the question, Is the game worth the candle?

I know another young man who believed he could be happy by spending
one-third of what he made and saving the other portion. He said to me,
"some day I want to marry and I want to treat my wife better, if
possible, than she was treated at home. I want the respect of my fellow
man, I want to be a leader, and I know I can only do so by saving a part
of what I make." It was my good pleasure, a few weeks ago, to visit the
city where this young man is practising medicine. He carried me over
that town in an automobile, he entertained me in his $5000 home, he
showed me other property which he owned. Ah, my friends, his indeed was
a happy home. Life to him was blessedly real.

Some young men start life with the idea that Sunday school is a place
for children, the church for old people and the Y. M. C. A. a place for
young men with no life. What a wrong idea! Why, the young men who are
alive in all walks of life, and who are in the forward ranks, are found
in these places. The other young men with distorted views of life think
that they must frequent places where the social glass is passed. They do
so; after a while it becomes a necessity, the drink habit grows upon
them; they die drunkards. Do you remember the story of Robert Ferguson
who, better known as the "laureate of Edinburgh," was the poet of
Scottish city-life? His dissipations were great, his tavern and boon
companions hastening him on to a premature and painful death. His reason
gave way. He was sent to an asylum for the insane. After about two
months' confinement he died in his cell. What a sad climax to a
promising career!

Young men, be masters of yourselves. Dare to do the right. Dare to say
No. Have strong faith not only in yourself but faith in the Unseen
Power, who holds the destinies of all in His hands. The world needs you.

A good many young men think that to be great they must go into the broad
fields of politics, waiting for an office, waiting on the changing whims
of men, instead of waiting upon self; waiting for something to turn up
instead of turning up something; going to the Capital "because I helped
to elect someone." "I leave behind me a good job but I have been
promised something better." So the poor fellow starts out to the capital
of the nation, spends what little money he has saved at home, because
he is going to get a job and make barrels of money. The Mecca of his
hopes is reached. He finds himself a little man at the great center of
the nation, the few dollars he brings with him soon melt away; his
friends run when they see him coming because he wants to borrow a
dollar. At home he was a little king, but at the Capital he is a
"would-be statesman seeking a job." Was the game worth the candle?

My friends, good men are needed in politics, men who are safe and tried,
men who will not yield to prejudice or sentiment, but will do the right
as they see the right. God give us such men. Politics for a helpless,
dependent race will never prove a relief or blessing until we have
strong, safe leaders who, losing sight of self and a few
self-constituted leaders, will see the whole people. The race will never
come into its own until we have such a condition.

A young man starts out in life with the determination to fight his way
by physical force to the front ranks. Bruised, disfigured, or killed, he
is forced back even beyond the lines again. A religiously inclined youth
asked his pastor, "Do you think it would be wrong for me to learn the
noble art of self-defense?" "Certainly not," replied the pastor, "I
learned it in youth myself, and I have found it of great value in my
life." "Indeed, sir, did you learn the Old English system or the
Sullivan system?" "Neither; I learned Solomon's system!" replied the
minister. "Yes, you will find it laid down in the first verse of the
fifteenth chapter of Proverbs, 'A soft answer turneth away wrath'; it
is the best system of self-defense I know."

Too many of us starting out on life's journey have a warped ambition.
This ambition is a love of self in the desire that self might gain the
ascendency over our fellows, not that we might be of benefit to
humanity, but that we aim to derive personal gain only. We follow the
standard of this or that man, not because we believe in him or his
policies, but because he is on the successful top round of the ladder
now, so away with principles, away with conscience, away with right,--I
must follow the man who will give most! A sad awakening comes, the idol
tumbles or else turns against you, and you are left like a stranded ship
on some vast ocean, alone, amidst the lashing of the billows and the
roaring of the waves. Remember Cardinal Wolsey's experience. You may
recall these lines,

    "Would that I had served my God
    With half the zeal I served my king,
    He would not in mine old age
    Have left me naked to my enemies."

Was the game worth the candle?

Another young man starts life with a wrong idea regarding city and
country life. Born in the country he is free, his thoughts and ambitions
can feed on a pure atmosphere, but he thinks his conditions and his
surroundings are circumscribed, he longs for the city, with its bigness,
its turmoil, and its conflicts. He leaves the old homestead, the quiet
village, the country people, and hies himself to the city. He forgets to
a large extent the good boy he used to be, in the desire to keep up
with the fashions and to make the people forget that he was once a
country boy. City life, as is often the case, breaks up his youth,
destroys his morals, undermines his character, steals his reputation,
and finally leaves the promising youth a wrecked man. Was the game worth
the candle?

Young men, never be ashamed of the old log-cabin in the country, or the
old bonnet your mother used to wear, or the jean pants your father used
to toil in. I had rather be a poor country boy with limited surroundings
and a pure heart than to be a city man bedecked in the latest fashions
and weighted down with money, having no morals, no character. I had
rather have the religion and faith of my fathers than to have the
highest offices. I had rather have glorious life, pure and lofty, than
to have great riches. Sir Walter Scott was right when he said,

    "Sound, sound the clarion, fill the fife,
      To all the sensual world proclaim:
    One crowded hour of glorious life
      Is worth an age without a name."

Young men, what is the basis of your life and what is its goal? Have you
digged deeply and thrown out all the waste material of follies and vice
and built upon a substantial foundation of honest manhood and sterling
character? If not, you are a failure. However, chords that are broken
may vibrate once more; take up the angled threads again and weave
another pattern. The book that will always be the best and safest guide
for weaving life's pattern is the Bible,--the truest and best friend
any young man can have. If you want oratory, you need not talk about
Demosthenes walking along the shores of Greece with pebbles in his
mouth, nor about that great American orator, Daniel Webster, but if you
turn almost to the beginning of that wonderful Book and listen to the
pleadings of Jacob's sons as they begged for the life of their father,
it will surpass your Demosthenes or Webster in true eloquence. If you
want logic, even though Aristotle may be world famous as the "father of
logic," yet if you listen to the hunch-backed, red faced, crooked nosed,
baldheaded Jew, Saul of Tarsus, you will find his logic stands
unsurpassed in all the ages of the world. The history of four thousand
years and more you will find there. You will discover the beginnings and
the end of things. Reason, with her flickering torch, cannot point to
any such sublime truths as are found in the Bible. Philosophy with her
school stands amazed when confronted with the philosophy of the Bible.
Science, itself the greatest contributor to the happiness of man, having
penetrated the arcana of nature, sunk her shafts into earth's recesses,
measured the heights of its massive pillars to the very pedestal of
primeval granite, tracked the tornadoes, uncurtained the distant
planets, and foretold the coming of the comets and the return of the
eclipses, has never as yet been able to lift up a degraded man and point
him to a higher path. I commend the Bible to you.

No life is great unless that life is good. Each day is a life, and that
day is wasted that is not filled with lofty desire, with actual
achievement, that does not bring us nearer to God, nearer to our
fellow-man and nearer to the things God has created. In such a plan of
life will we find real and lasting happiness. God means every man to be
happy. He sends us no sorrows that have not some recompense.

There are two old Dutch words which have resounded through the world,
"_Neen nimmer_," "No, never." The fleets of Spain heard it, and
understood it fully, when they saw the sinking Dutch ships with the
flags nailed to the shattered mainmast, crying "_Neen nimmer_," which
indicated that they would never surrender.

Will the young men who are to be the leaders, spend their hours in
riotous living? No, never! Will they be false to duty? No, never! Will
they shirk? No, never! Will they be disloyal to self, to home, to
country, and to God? No, never!

I close with an illustration. Croesus was a rich man, a king. One day
Croesus said to Solon, the philosopher, "Do you not think I am a happy
man?" Solon answered, "Alas, I do not know, Croesus; that life is happy
that ends well." A few years later when Croesus had lost his wealth, his
kingdom, and his health, and had been deserted by those who in his days
of glory ran to do his slightest bidding, Croesus in anguish and misery
exclaimed, "Solon, Solon, thou saidst truly that life is well and happy
that ends well."



_Commandant of Cadets, Hampton Institute, Virginia_

[Note 42: An address delivered at the Tuskegee Commencement, May,

_Students, Friends:_

Among the most highly developed races we observe certain dominant
characteristics, certain very essential elements of character, by which
they have so influenced mankind and helped the world that they were
enabled to write their names in history so indelibly as to withstand and
endure the test of time.

Your education, your observation, your occupation, have brought you into
close touch and into personal and vital relations with the fundamental
problems of life. We may call it the truth problem, the labor problem,
the Indian problem, or perhaps the Negro problem. I like to call it the
"Human Race Problem."

The dawn of history breaks upon a world at strife, a universal conflict
of man at war with his brother. The very face of the earth has been dyed
in blood and its surface whitened with human bones in an endeavor to
establish a harmonious and helpful adjustment between man and man. There
can be no interest more fundamental or of greater concern to the human
family than the proper adjustment of man's relations to his brother.

You and I belong to an undeveloped, backward race that is rarely for its
own sake taken into account in the adjustment of man's relation to man,
but is considered largely with reference to the impression which it
makes upon the dominant Anglo-Saxon. The Negro's very existence is
itself somewhat satellitious, and secondary only, to the great white orb
around which he revolves. If by chance any light does appear in the
black man's sphere of operations, it is usually assumed that it is
reflected from his association with his white brother. The black is
generally projected against the white and usually to the disadvantage
and embarrassment of the former. It becomes very easy, therefore, to see
in our minds and hearts what is so apparent in our faces, "Darkness
there and nothing more."

But you must keep in mind that the Negro is a tenth part of a great
cosmopolitan commonwealth; he is a part of a nation to which God has
given many very intricate problems to work out. Who knows but that this
nation is God's great laboratory which is being used by the Creator to
show the rest of the world, what it does not seem thoroughly to
understand, that it is possible for all God's people, even the two most
extreme types, the black and the white, to live together harmoniously
and helpfully?

The question that the American nation must face, and which the Negro as
a part of the nation should soberly and dispassionately consider, is the
mutual, social, civic, and industrial adjustment upon common ground of
two races, differing widely in characteristics and diverse in physical
peculiarities, but alike suspicious and alike jealous, and alike more or
less biased and prejudiced each toward the other. Without doubt the
physical peculiarities of the Negro, which are perhaps the most
superficial of all the distinctions, are nevertheless the most difficult
of adjustment. While I do not believe that a man's color is ever a
disadvantage to him, he is very likely to find it an inconvenience
sometimes, in some places.

We might as well be perfectly frank and perfectly honest with ourselves;
it is not an easy task to adjust the relations of ten millions of people
who, while they may be mature in passion and perhaps in prejudice, are
yet to a large extent children in judgment and in experience, to a race
of people not only mature in civilization, but the principles of whose
government were based upon more or less mature judgment and experience
at the beginning of this nation; and when we take into also account the
wide difference in ethnic types of the two races that are here brought
together, the problem becomes one of the gravest intricacy that has ever
taxed human wisdom and human patience for solution. This situation makes
it necessary for the Negro as a race to grasp firmly two or three
fundamental elements.

The first is _race consciousness_.

The Negro must play essentially the primary part in the solution of this
problem. Since his emancipation he has conclusively demonstrated to most
people that he possesses the same faculties and susceptibilities as the
rest of human mankind; this is the greatest victory the race has
achieved during its years of freedom. Having demonstrated that his
faculties and susceptibilities are capable of the highest development,
it must be true of the black race as it has been true of other races,
that it must go through the same process and work out the same problem
in about the same way as other races have done.

We can and we have profited very much by the examples of progressive
races. This is a wonderful advantage, and we have not been slow to grasp
it. But we must remember that we are subject to the same natural factor
in the solution of this problem, and that it cannot be solved without
considering this factor. The Negro must first of all have a
conscientious pride and absolute faith and belief in himself. He must
not unduly depreciate race distinctions and allow himself to think that,
because out of one blood God created all nations of the earth,
brotherhood is already an accomplished reality. Let us not deceive
ourselves, blighted as we are with a heritage of moral leprosy from our
past history and hard pressed as we are in the economic world by foreign
immigrants and by native prejudice; our one surest haven of refuge is in
ourselves; our one safest means of advance is our belief in and implicit
trust in our own ability and worth. No race that despises itself, that
laughs at and ridicules itself, that wishes to God it were anything else
but itself, can ever be a great people. There is no power under heaven
that can stop the onward march of ten millions of earnest, honest,
inspired, God-fearing, race-loving, and united people.

Secondly, we must have a _high moral ideal_.

With a strong race consciousness and reasonable prudence, a people with
a low, vacillating, and uncertain moral ideal may, for a time, be able
to stem the tide of outraged virtue, but this is merely transitory.
Ultimate destruction and ruin follow absolutely in the wake of moral
degeneracy; this, all history shows;--this, experience teaches. God
visits the iniquities of the fathers upon the children unto the third
and fourth generations. "The judgments of the Lord are true and
righteous all together."

Not long ago I stood in the city of Rome amid its ruined fountains,
crumbling walls, falling aqueducts, ancient palaces, and amphitheatres,
to-day mere relics of ancient history. One is struck with wonder and
amazement at the magnificent civilization which that people was able to
evolve. It does not seem possible that the Roman people, who could so
perfect society in its organic and civic relations and leave to the
world the organic principles which must always lie at the base of all
subsequent social development,--it does not seem possible that such a
people should so decay as to leave hardly a vestige of its original
stock, and that such cities as the Romans erected should so fall as to
leave scarcely one stone upon another. Neither does it seem credible
that a people who could so work out in its philosophical aspect man's
relation to the eternal mystery, and come as near a perfect solution as
is perhaps possible for the human mind to reach, that a people who could
give to the world such literature, such art, such ideals of physical and
intellectual beauty, as did the Greeks, could so utterly perish from
the face of the earth; yet this is the case not only with Rome and
Greece, but with a score or more of nations which were once masters of
the world. The Greeks, Romans, Persians, Egyptians, and even God's
chosen people, allowed corruption and vice to so dwarf their moral sense
that there was, according to the universal law of civilization, nothing
left for them but death and destruction.

It is no reproach to the Negro to say that his history and environment
in this country have well-nigh placed him at the bottom of the moral
scale. This must be remedied, if the Negro is ever to reach his full
status of civilized manhood and womanhood. It must come through the
united efforts of the educated among us. We must be united to stop the
ravages of disease among our people; united to keep black boys from
idleness, vice, gambling, and crime; united to guard the purity of black
womanhood and, I might add, black manhood also. It is not enough to
simply protest that ninety-five out of every hundred Negroes are orderly
and law-abiding. The ninety-five must be banded together to restrain and
suppress the vicious five.

The people must be impressed with the idea that a high moral character
is absolutely essential to the highest development of every race, white
quite as much as black. There is no creature so low and contemptible as
he who does not seek first the approval of his own conscience and his
God; for, after all, how poor is human recognition when you and your God
are aware of your inward integrity of soul! If the Negro will keep
clean hands and a pure heart, he can stand up before all the world and
say, "Doubtless Thou, O Lord, art our Father, though Abraham be ignorant
of us and Israel acknowledge us not."

Thirdly, and lastly, _the Negro needs intelligent industry_.

Slavery taught the Negro many things for which he should be profoundly
thankful--the Christian religion, the English language, and, in a
measure, civilization, which in many aspects may be crude in form, but
these have placed him a thousand years ahead of his African ancestors.

Slavery taught the Negro to work by rule and rote but not by principle
and method. It did not and, perhaps, could not teach him to love and
respect labor, but left him, on the contrary, with the idea that manual
industry was a thing to be despised and gotten rid of, if possible; that
to work with one's hands was a badge of inferiority. A tropical climate
is not conducive to the development of practical energy. Add to the
Negro's natural tendency his unfortunate heritage from slavery, and we
see at once that the race needs especially to be rooted and grounded in
the underlying scientific principles of concrete things. The time when
the world bowed before merely abstract, impractical knowledge has
well-nigh passed; the demand of this age and hour is not so much what a
man knows,--though the world respects and reveres knowledge and always
will, I hope,--what the world wants to know is what a man can do and how
well he can do it.

We must not be misled by high-sounding phrases as to the kind of
education the race should receive, but we should remember that the
education of a people should be conditioned upon their capacity, social
environment, and the probable life which they will lead in the immediate
future. We fully realize that the ignorant must be taught, the poor must
have the gospel, and the vicious must be restrained, but we also realize
that these do not strike the "bed-rock" of a permanent, lasting

If the Negro will add his proportionate contribution to the economic
aspect of the world's civilization, it must be done through intelligent,
well-directed, conscientious, skilled industry. Indeed, the feasible
forms of civilization are nothing but the concrete actualization of
intelligent thought applied to what are sometimes called common things.

The primary sources of wealth are agriculture, mining, manufacturing,
and commerce. These are the lines along which the thoughtful energy of
the black race must be directed. I mean by agriculture, _farming_--the
raising of corn, cotton, peas, and potatoes, pigs, chickens, horses, and

Land may be bought practically anywhere in the South almost at our own
price. Twenty years hence, with the rapidly developing Southern country
and the strenuous efforts to fill it up with foreign immigrants, it will
be difficult, if not impossible, for us to buy land. God gave the
children of Israel the "Land of Canaan" but, Oh, what a life and death
struggle they had to take possession of it and hold on to it. God has
given to the Negro here in this Southern country two of the most
fundamental necessities in his development--_land_ and _labor_. If you
don't possess this land and hold this labor, God will tell you as He has
often told other races--"to move on."

The Creator never meant that this beautiful land should be forever kept
as a great hunting-ground for the Indian to roam in savage bliss, but he
intended that it should be used. The Indian, having for scores of
generations failed to develop this land, God asked the Anglo-Saxon to
take possession and dig out the treasures of wheat, corn, cotton, gold
and silver, coal and iron, and the poor Indian was told "to move on."

The Negro in Africa sits listlessly in the sunshine of barbarous
idleness while the same progressive, indomitable, persevering, white man
is taking possession; the same edict has gone forth to the native
African--he is being told "to move on."

The same God will tell the white man in America and in Africa, if he
does not mete out absolute justice and absolute fairness to his weaker
and less-advantaged brother, black or red or brown, if he cannot do
justly and love mercy, just as he told the patricians of Rome, he will
tell the white man "to move on."

Whatever question there may be about the white man's part in this
situation, there is no doubt about ours. Don't let us delude ourselves
but keep in mind the fact that the man who owns his home and cultivates
his land and lives a decent, self-respecting, useful, and helpful life
is no problem anywhere. We talk about the "color line," but you know
and I know that the blackest Negro in Alabama or Mississippi or Africa
or anywhere else who puts the same amount of skill and energy into his
farming gets as large returns for his labor as the whitest Anglo-Saxon.
The earth yields up her increase as willingly to the skill and
persuasions of the black as of the white husbandman. Wind, wave, heat,
stream, and electricity are absolutely blind forces and see no race
distinction and draw no "color line." The world's market does not care
and it asks no question about the shade of the hand that produces the
commodity, but it does insist that it shall be up to the world's

I thank God for the excellent chance to work that my race had in this
Southern country; the Negro in America has a real, good, healthy job,
and I hope he may always keep it. I am not particular what he does or
where he does it, so he is engaged in honest, useful work. Remember
always that building a house is quite as important as building a poem;
that the science of cooking is as useful to humanity as the science of
music; that the thing most to be desired is a harmonious and helpful
adaptation of all the arts and sciences to the glory of God and the good
of humanity; that whether we labor with muscle or with brain, both need
divine inspiration. Let us consecrate our brain and muscle to the
highest and noblest service, to God, and humanity.

* * * * *

There is no reason why any Negro should become discouraged or morbid. We
believe in God; His providence is mysterious and inscrutible; but his
ways are just and righteous altogether. Suffering and disappointment
have always found their place in divine economy. It took four hundred
years of slavery in Egypt and a sifting process of forty years in the
"Wilderness" to teach Israel to respect their race and to fit them for
entrance into the "Promised Land." The black man has not as yet
thoroughly learned to have the respect for his race that is so necessary
to the making of a great people. I believe the woes that God has sent
him are but the fiery furnace through which he is passing, that is
separating the dross from the pure gold, and is welding the Negroes
together as a great people for a great purpose.

There is every reason for optimism, hopefulness. The Negro never had
more the respect and confidence of his neighbors, black and white, than
he has to-day. Neither has he because of his real worth deserved that
respect more than he does to-day. Could anybody, amid the inspiration of
these grounds and buildings, be discouraged about the future of the
Negro? The race problem in this country, I repeat, is simply a part of
the problem of life. It is the adjustment of man's relation to his
brother, and this adjustment began when Cain slew Abel. Race prejudice
is as much a fact as the law of gravitation, and it is as foolish to
ignore the operation of one as of the other. Mournful complaint and
arrogant criticism are as useless as the crying of a baby against the
fury of a great wind. The path of moral progress, remember, has never
taken a straight line, but I believe that, unless democracy is a failure
and Christianity a mockery, it is entirely feasible and practicable for
the black and white races of America to develop side by side, in peace,
in harmony, and in mutual helpfulness each toward the other; living
together as "brothers in Christ without being brothers-in-law," each
making its contributions to the wealth and culture of our beloved

* * * * *

I close with these lines, from an anonymous poet, on "The Water Lily":

    "O star on the breast of the river,
      O marvel of bloom and grace,
    Did you fall straight down from heaven,
      Out of the sweetest place?
    You are white as the thought of the angel,
      Your heart is steeped in the sun;
    Did you grow in the golden city,
      My pure and radiant one?

    "Nay, nay, I fell not out of heaven;
      None gave me my saintly white;
    It slowly grew in the blackness,
      Down in the dreary night,
    From the ooze of the silent river
      I won my glory and grace;
    While souls fall not, O my poet,
      They _rise_ to the sweetest place."



_Secretary of Howard University_

[Note 43: An address delivered at a banquet given in his honor, May
21, 1912.]

_Mr. Toastmaster and Friends:_

Let me first thank the Committee and you all for your generosity in
tendering me this evidence of good wishes and good will. It is stated in
your invitation, "In honor of George William Cook, Secretary of Howard
University"--a double compliment, at once personal and official. Surely
it is an honor to find so many men of varied occupations and duties
turning aside to spend time and money to express appreciation of one's
character. Dull indeed must the creature be who cannot find gratitude
enough to return thanks; for grateful minds always return thanks. To be
direct I deeply feel the personal and non-official side of the
compliment you pay me, but will you pardon me, gentlemen, if I confess
that to compliment me as Secretary of Howard University touches me in a
tender and vulnerable spot. "I love old Howard," and always have been
and am now anxious to be in the team to tug at the administrative phase
of Howard's movements. Accept then, my sincere thanks.

Now let us then turn aside in sweet communion as brothers to talk about
our alma mater. Let us trace her from foundation to present eminence;
re-affirm our family pledges and form resolutions new. Howard men will
spring up with both money and spirit, not far in the future, when the
mother's cry in want will be met with a generous hand from her sons and
daughters. A little more time for preparation and accumulation; then
will be the time when endowment will precede request for preferment.
When black philanthropists can turn desert spots into oases of learning
and build halls of culture, then will Howard be reaping the reward in
her own harvest and justify her being in the great family of

Though I wax warm in sentiment, I crave your indulgence but for a short
while, for I pledge you my honor, and I say it seriously, that there is
an affection underlying my words that makes Howard but second in love to
my wife and child. She has been a gracious mother to me, supplying my
necessities and defending me in my adversities, for which I have ever
sought with might and main to return loyalty and service. When I am
referred to as a Howard man, I have an uplift in the consciousness of
relationship and fealty to an institution which to honor is but to be

Visible manifestations of thought and idea have ever marked the purposes
of man. Monuments and cities but express precurrent mental objects. God,
in His message to Moses, directed that a tabernacle be built and that it
should be the sign of his pleasure and approbation, a veritable
indwelling of the spirit of God. Living thought can be said to have
habitation. Greek and Roman art, Egyptian architecture, Catholic
grandeur, or Quaker simplicity, all speak some great and noble
soul-moving and world-moving power. Within the temple area was centered
the devotion of the Jew, both political and religious. The Hebrew
theocratic system of government made it so. St. Peter's at Rome, no more
nor less than St. Paul's at London, speaks of God and the mission of His
son. The Mosque of Omar, Saint Sophia at Constantinople, point that
Allah is God and Mohammed is His Prophet; the Taj-Mahal is at once the
emblem and creation of love; the Sistine Chapel teaches the glories and
joys of maternity and God incarnate in man. The Pan-American Building at
Washington, the Carnegie Peace Building at The Hague, teach unity of
mankind, and but heighten the angelic chorus of "Peace and good will to

From yon Virginia hill, a galaxy of institutions may be discerned,
bringing lessons to a listening world. As one may stand on Arlington's
sacred heights, looking about him, he will find the indices in the
graves and monuments there of sacrifice for a national union
"indissoluble and forever"; and as his eyes sweep the horizon, scanning
through mist and sunshine, the emblem and insignia of thought and policy
will block the view. He will see the gold-tipped dome of the Library of
Congress glinting in the light, and know its scintillations but herald
the purpose to keep the light of learning and knowledge bright. Yon
stately Capitol dome interrupts his line of vision but to remind him
that it covers the chancel of legislation, and that representative
government is a fixed and permanent fact. That single towering shaft on
yon Potomac bed speaks of individual and unselfish devotion to a
nation--Washingtonian patriotism, unique in history--and at the same
time reflects the appreciation of a grateful and worshipful people. Hast
thou seen it in its lonely grandeur on a moonlight night? It is well
worth a trip across the ocean to read its message. Sweeping westward,
the eye sees planted on a hill-top Georgetown College, the outward
symbol of tenet and propaganda. Raising the visual angle and dropping
back to the northwest, the white marble walls of the American University
come to view, planted that Methodism with justification by faith might
preach the Gospel for the redemption of man. Turning to the northeast,
the great Catholic University presents itself as a repository and, at
the same time, a vehicle of Catholic love of learning; and in
juxtaposition towers high in alabastine whiteness the Spanish
architecture of the Soldiers Home; though standing mute in immaculate
marble, expressing to the defenders of a country an appreciation of
their patriotism and sacrifice; the _ensemble_ preaching to an active
world. Then, the line of vision is obtruded upon by the stately main
building of Howard University, of her structures the noblest. Observed
from the high palisades or the low bed of the Potomac, that ever-present
object of view from any point of the District is veritably "a city on a
hill that cannot be hid,"--symbolic and typical of her mission. And then
the inquiry comes as to her significance. Why standeth thou there
absorbing space?

Vying in sunshine and moonshine with the Capitol in conspicuous aspect,
the two stand as twin sentinels on opposite ramparts of the Potomac
Valley, overlooking in midnight vigil the slumbering city, each
challenging the attention of the wayfarer. What art thou to justify
thyself to man? What mission hast thou to excuse thy being? What road of
profit? What principle of uplift hast thou to send forth? Thy halls
resound to the murmur of what message from the Divine? What, we ask, is
thy mission? The answer is echoed from the archives: "Consult her
founders; learn of them if thou wouldst know." Therefore, friends, we
turn to the records of Howard University and the declaration of her
founders--her founders, men fresh from the fortunes of war,
battle-scarred and blood-stained, desiring further to perpetuate the
object of their militant victories by the forces of peace and
brotherhood; men who failed to die at Gettysburg, Chancellorsville, and
Lookout Mountain, and continued the fight on this hill; men who, not
satisfied with loosening the shackles of bondage, turned their powers to
driving darkness from human souls, though encased in ebony; men who
wrought under God's hand, and dying dissatisfied that the full fruition
of their labors were not yet come to pass, leaving to survivors and
posterity an unmistaken task and warfare.

Howard has had two seals. The first reading "Equal rights and knowledge
for all"; the second, "For God and the Republic"; the former breathing
the spirit of the Civil War period and the Pauline doctrine declared
before the Areopagus, announced in the preaching and work of Christ and
emphasized by the Declaration of Independence; the latter pregnant with
reverence, piety, and patriotism; the twain compassing man's duty higher
than which human conception is lost. Privileged indeed is one to live
under the ægis of such twin declarations. Fortunate indeed to have the
authorization of official acts blessed by the benediction of such

The preamble to the charter explains comprehensively, though not in
detail, the great purpose of Howard University:

"Section 1. That there be established, and is hereby established in the
District of Columbia, a university for the education of youth in the
liberal arts and sciences, under the name, seal, and title of Howard
University," stated as simple and plain as the decalogue itself.

I glean from the Fourth Annual Report on Schools for Freedmen for July
1, 1867, by J. W. Alvord, then General Superintendent of Schools, Bureau
for Refugees and Abandoned Lands, what I conceive to be the first
catalogue of Howard University, and, if you will bear with me, I will
read the entire catalogue.

"Howard University. A charter has been granted by Congress for the
Howard University, which is to be open to all of both sexes without
discrimination of color. This institution bids fair to do great good.
Its beautiful site, so opportunely and wisely secured, is an earnest of
success. Large and commodious buildings are soon to be erected thereon.
The normal and preparatory departments of the university were opened on
the first of May, under the instruction of Rev. E. F. Williams, an
accomplished scholar and a thorough teacher. At the close of the month
the school numbered thirty-one scholars; it has now increased to about
sixty. Miss Lord, so long a popular teacher of this city, has been
appointed assistant. The grade of this school is low for its name, but
the students are making good advancement."

It may be thought by casual consideration, as was said by eminent men,
that the name was the largest thing about it, but I prefer to disagree
and to say that the purpose as set forth in the charter is the greatest
thing about it. These are the words:

"We urge all friends of the freedmen to increasing confidence and to
look forward with assured expectation to greater things than these. This
people are to be prepared for what is being prepared for them. They are
to become a 'people which in time past were not a people'; and there is
increasing evidence that 'God hath made of one blood all the nations of
men.' Equal endowments substantially, with equal culture, will produce
that equality common to all mankind."

In them we get the quintescence, we get the crystallization, we get the
high purpose, we get the spiritual foundation, of Howard University.

Conceived in prayer, born of the faith and convictions as embodied in
its original seal which reads, "Equal rights and knowledge for all," an
offspring of Plymouth Rock, Howard University is set before you--a cross
between religious fervor and prophetic educational enthusiasm. She is,
then, the essence filtrating from the declaration of Paul at Athens,
that "of one blood hath God created all men to dwell upon earth."

For forty-five years, Howard has been living her life. She has been more
or less doing her work as circumstances allowed and dictated, but now we
ask of you "Watchman, what of the night?" How far has this work been
progressing along the line of basal principles that we find embodied in
all these authoritative extracts? Unfortunate I think it is that the
discussions in the early meetings of the Board of Trustees were not
preserved in stenographic report, for the time will come when the
spiritual history of Howard University must be written as well as its
material history, and then the historian will be at a loss to find the
true afflatus that gave birth to our alma mater, unless we keep it in

The imagination has oft painted Howard University as a temple--a temple
of knowledge,--a temple for the teaching of justice; a temple for the
upbuild of mankind. Let us then hold its form to our imagination, pearly
white as the palaces of the South, straight in its construction as
rectitude, and let us present it to an admiring world, not only for
æsthetic culture but ethical grandeur, religious progress, and political
righteousness; and let us say to all, be he high or low, "who touches a
stone in yon God-given edifice" is guilty of vandalism, is an iconoclast
not at any time to be tolerated. He is tampering with the rights and
privileges of a worthy people and deserves to have visited upon him the
excoriation of a fiery indignation. Howard was created to meet the dire
needs of a meritorious class, and insensible indeed must the man be who
for sentimental or personal reasons or for profit, swerves one degree
from the line of the highest form of education in administration or
instruction. There should be launched upon him the anathema of an
outraged people.

Sound the alarm that no man must hinder the true mission of Howard
University. It were better for him that a millstone were hung about his
neck and that he be cast into the deep. For him there is punishment even
after death in the sure infamy that will attach to his name.

The old motto, "Equal rights and knowledge for all," is a necessary
constituent of the Howard University life and purpose. There can be no
Howard University without equal rights and highest culture for all,
based upon merit and capacity. To be plain, we know of no Negro
education. Political rights and civic privileges are accompaniments of
citizenship and are therefore part of the warp and woof of Howard
University's curricula; the salt and savor without which wherewith will
it be salted? Mathematics has no color; ethics and philosophy are of no
creed or class; culture was not fashioned for race monopoly; knowledge
is in no plan or department an exclusive goal; justice is universal.
Freedom in striving for the acquisition of God's bounty as revealed by
nature is the birthright of all and an inalienable right of all. These
are God-given privileges, and any contravention of them is born of evil
and belongs to the evil powers.

Our privileges have imposed a trust and we are the trustees. Let no man
deceive himself. Whatever the opportunity of approval now for betrayal
of trust bequeathed to us, the time will come for the court of public
opinion to find whom to blame and whom to thank. What the founders
demanded for Howard, we must still demand. What William Clark and Martha
Spaulding by their gifts meant, must still be meant by Howard's
activities. Being justified in the past, it must be maintained in the
future. Then to-night let us re-baptize in Howard spirit and issue the
mandate of loyalty and endeavor.

* * * * *

Let no Howard man ever expatriate himself. Necessity driving him from
Howard, let him consider himself domiciled elsewhere, but his scholastic
citizenship intact in Howard.

We will sing the old song of Howard, though there be other songs
greater. Yale, Cambridge, Oxford, and Leipsic may sing their songs, but,
for me and my house, we will sing "Howard, I love old Howard."

Let us imitate the psalmist: "We will meditate also of all thy work, and
talk of thy doings." We will exalt Howard and delight in her good work.
Where she is weak we will endeavor to strengthen, and where she is
strong we will direct to the uplift of the race. She may be lacking in
equipment; that can be tolerated; but as to principle, she must not be
weak at any point. From stem to stern she must carry the marks of her
purpose, and at mast-head must float the pennant of her seals.

Neither time nor purpose can ever erase the fitness of "Equal rights and
knowledge for all," "For God and the Republic,"--_the two seals_.



J. MILTON WALDRON, D.D., _of Washington, D. C. Noted as having erected
and operated the first Institutional Church among Negroes in America in
Jacksonville, Florida, 1890-1907._

[Note 44: Delivered at Cooper Institute, New York, 1912.]

That fearless, able, and broad-minded author of "The Negro and the Sunny
South"--a book, by the way, every American citizen should read--Samuel
Creed Cross, a white man of West Virginia, takes up an entire chapter in
giving with the briefest comments even a partial list of the crimes
committed by the whites of the South against the Negroes during the
author's recent residence of six months in the section. Last year eighty
or ninety colored persons, some of them women and children, were
murdered, lynched, or burned for "the nameless crime," for murder or
suspected murder, for barn-burning, for insulting white women and
"talking back" to white men, for striking an impudent white lad, for
stealing a white boy's lunch and for no crime at all--unless it be a
crime for a black man to ask Southern men to accord him the rights
guaranteed him by the Constitution.

Within the last twelve months Georgia disfranchised her colored citizens
by a constitutional subterfuge and Florida attempted the same crime. And
within the same period almost every white secular newspaper, and many
of the religious journals, of the South contained in every issue of
their publications abusive and malicious articles concerning the Negro
in which they inflamed the whites against the brother in black and
sought to justify the South in robbing him of his labor, his
self-respect, his franchise, his liberty, and life itself. Many of the
officials of Southern States, including numerous judges and not a few
Christian ministers, helped or sanctioned these Negro-hating editors and
reporters in their despicable onslaught upon the Negro, while tens of
thousands of white business men of the South fattened upon Negro convict
labor and the proceeds of the "order system."

Not satisfied with the wrongs and outrages she has heaped upon the
colored people in her own borders the South is industriously preaching
her wicked doctrine of Negro inferiority, Negro suppression, and Negro
oppression everywhere in the North, East, and West. And yet, in the face
of this terrible record of crime against the liberty, manhood, and
political rights and the life of the colored man which is being
rewritten in the South every day, there are those in high places who
have the temerity to tell us that "The Southern people are the Negro's
best friends," and that the Negro problem is a Southern problem and the
South should be allowed to solve it in her own way without any
interference on the part of the North.

The North and the South together stole the black man from his home in
Africa and enslaved him in this land, and this whole nation has reaped
the benefits of his two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil, and
this whole nation must see to it that the black man is fully
emancipated, enfranchised, thoroughly educated in heart, head, and hand,
and permitted to exercise his rights as a citizen and earn, wherever and
however he can, an honest and sufficient living for himself, his wife,
and children--this the South cannot do alone and unaided.

Nearly three millions of the ten million Negroes in this country live
north of Mason and Dixon's line, and thousands of others are coming
North and going West every month; over four hundred thousand of the
three millions mentioned above live in Washington, Baltimore,
Philadelphia, New York, St. Louis, and Chicago; if the Negro problem was
ever a Southern problem, the colored brother has taken it with him into
the North and the West and made it a national problem.

The life, liberty, and happiness of the black man and of the white man
of this country are so wrapped up together that it is impossible to
oppress the one without eventually oppressing the other. The white man
of the South was cursed by slavery as much almost as the black man whom
he robbed of life, liberty, and virtue. In many parts of the South
to-day the masses of poor white men are no better off in any sphere of
life than the colored people, with the single exception that their faces
are white. The rights and liberties of the common people of this entire
country have grown less secure, and their ballots have steadily
diminished in power, while the colored man has been robbed of his
franchise by the South. The trusts and the favored classes of this
country have seen the rights of millions of loyal black citizens taken
from them by the South in open violation of the Federal Constitution,
and that with the indirect approval of the highest courts of the land.
And these trusts and interests have come to feel that constitutions and
laws are not binding upon them, and that the common people--white and
black--have no rights which they are bound to respect. The South alone
cannot right these gigantic wrongs nor restore to the white people (not
to mention the Negroes) within her own borders the liberties and
privileges guaranteed them by the Constitution of the United States.

In discussing the South's attitude towards the colored man we seek only
to hold up to scorn and contempt the spirit which pervades the majority
of the people who live in that section; and we desire to condemn only
the men of the South who hate their fellow men; we wish to bear
testimony now and here to the truth that there is an undercurrent in the
South which is making for righteousness, and that there are a few noble
and heroic souls in every Southern State who believe that the Negro
ought to be treated as a man and be given all the rights and privileges
accorded any other man. This righteous spirit must, however, be
encouraged and strengthened, and the number of noble and fair-minded men
and women in the South must be greatly augmented, or the battle for
human liberty and the manhood and political rights of both races in that
section will never be won.

We beg to say that all the enemies of human rights in general, and of
the rights of black men in particular, are not in the South; the wrongs
complained of by the Negro in that section are, for the most part, the
same as those bewailed by him in the North, with this difference: the
Northern Negro's right to protest against the wrongs heaped upon him is
less restricted, and, his means of protection and defense are more
numerous in the North than in the South. Already in at least one State
north of Mason and Dixon's line Herculean efforts are being put forth to
disfranchise the colored man by constitutional enactment; the
discrimination against a man on account of his color, and the lynching
of Negroes and the burning of their houses by infuriated mobs of white
men, are not unheard of things in the North and West. Most of the
labor-unions of these sections are still closed to the brother in black,
and most white working-men in the Northern and Western States are
determined that the Negro shall not earn a living in any respectable
calling if they can prevent it. Many of the newspapers North and West
(and a few right here in New York City) often use their columns to
misrepresent and slander the colored man, and it was only last week when
one of the highest courts in the Empire State rendered a decision in
which it justified discrimination against a man on the grounds of his
color and his condition of servitude. Verily, the Negro problem is not a
Southern, but a national problem!

* * * * *

Many solutions for the Negro problem have been proposed, but to our mind
there is one and only one practical and effective answer to the
question. In the first place we claim that the early friends of the
Negro grasped the true solution, which is that his needs and
possibilities are the same as those of the other members of the human
family; that he must be educated not only for industrial efficiency and
for private gain, but to share in the duties and responsibilities of a
free democracy; that he must have equality of rights, for his own sake,
for the sake of the human race, and for the perpetuity of free
institutions. America will not have learned the full lesson of her
system of human slavery until she realizes that a rigid caste system is
inimical to the progress of the human race and to the perpetuity of
democratic government.

In the second place, the Negro must make common cause with the working
class which to-day is organizing and struggling for better social and
economic conditions. The old slave oligarchy maintained its ascendency
largely by fixing a gulf between the Negro slave and the white free
laborer, and the jealousies and animosities of the slave period have
survived to keep apart the Negro and the laboring white man. Powerful
influences are at work even to-day to impress upon the Negro the fact
that he must look to the business men of the South alone for protection
and recognition of his rights, while at the same time these very same
influences inflame the laboring white man against the black man with
fears of social equality and race fusion. The Negro, being a laborer,
must see that the cause of labor is his cause, that his elevation can be
largely achieved by having the sympathy, support, and co-operation of
that growing organization of working men the world over which is working
out the larger problems of human freedom and economic opportunity.

In the third place, wherever in this country the Negro has the
franchise, and where by complying with requirements he can regain it,
let him exercise it faithfully and constantly, but let him do so as an
independent and not as a partisan, for his political salvation in the
future depends upon his voting for men and measures, rather than with
any particular party.

For two hundred and fifty years the black man of America toiled in the
South without pay and without thanks; he cleared her forests, tunneled
her mountains, bridged her streams, built her cottages and palaces,
enriched her fields with his sweat and blood, nursed her children,
protected her women and guarded her homes from the midnight marauder,
the devouring flames, and approaching disease and death. The colored
American willingly and gladly enlisted and fought in every war waged by
this country, from the first conflict with the Indians to the last
battle in Cuba and the Philippines; when enfranchised he voted the
rebellious States back into the Union, and from that day until this he
has, as a race, never used his ballot, unless corrupted or intimidated
by white men, to the detriment of any part of America. When in power in
the South, though for the most part ignorant and just out of slavery and
surrounded by vindictive ex-slave owners and mercenary, corrupted and
corrupting "carpet baggers," he did what his former masters had failed
for centuries to do--he established the free school system, erected
asylums for the insane and indigent poor, purged the statute-books of
disgraceful marriage laws and oppressive and inhuman labor regulations,
revised and improved the penal code, and by many other worthy acts
proved that the heart of the race was, and is, in the right place, and
that whenever the American Negro has been trusted, he has proven himself
trustworthy and manly. And when the colored man is educated, and is
treated with fairness and justice, and is accorded the rights and
privileges which are the birthright of every American citizen, he will
show himself a man among men, and the race problem will vanish as the
mist before the rising sun.



_Vice Principal Manual Training and Industrial School, Bordentown, New

     "Honor thy father and thy mother that thy days may be long in the
     land which the Lord thy God giveth thee."

While obedience to parents is the primary significance of this command,
its widening scope is seen in the comprehensive authority of the father
of the old Hebrew family. He was the ruler and the protector of the
family, and as human society enlarged and much of the original authority
of the parent passed from him, the child was prepared to give honor to
such authority and wisdom as he had recognized in the father. Thus
generically the command may cover the wide range suggested by the
Westminster Assembly: "The Fifth Commandment requireth the preserving
the honor and performing the duties belonging to every one in their
several places and relations as superiors, inferiors or equals." And
this honor idea in the home not only spreads out, but it climbs, and we
may say that as the Hebrew family contained the beginning of government,
all other authorities of this world wind up and out of the home,
ascending in spiral form until the little coil of the domestic circle

* * * * *

Last summer, while seated in a crowded train, my attention was
attracted by a little family group. The heat-worn mother held a baby in
one arm, and the other hand was steadying a toddling boy. She had
repeatedly reproved her half-grown daughter and finally spoke sharply to
her, when the child suddenly lifted the heavy umbrella in her hand and
struck her mother!

These are the facts that impressed me: the unmasked powerlessness of the
mother, the cool unconcern of the father, but above all the apathetic
indifference of the passengers.

The modern family is without discipline, all of the elements in the home
having a tendency to wander from the hearth center. There is the father
whose absence, because of occupational absorption, is lengthened by many
extraneous interests. The mother, too, is receding from the home center
in her misguided enthusiasm for so-called equality in business,
professional, and political life. And the children? As one sad-faced
mother said to me the other day, "They get out of the home so early!"

* * * * *

All the reverence for parents in the world's history, is hallowed by the
lofty example of Jesus in his dutiful subjection to his earthly parents,
and in the marvelous solicitude of his dying words, "Son, behold thy

* * * * *

A great light is thrown on this economic relation of the commandment by
the attitude of the Centurion pleading with the Master for his servant's
life. Here was an employer whose stretched-out arm of authority could be
transformed into a gesture of appeal, for his servant lying sick at
home. Indeed only as the spirit of this commandment makes itself felt in
our business life will the clenched hands of capital and labor relax
from the hilts of their dripping blades and grasp each other with the
warm pressure of brotherly sympathy.

* * * * *

Then there are the mutual relations between the young and the aged. Oh,
for a return in our youth to that ancient bowing deference to old age a
beautiful instance of which Cicero preserves for us. Into the crowded
amphitheatre at Athens, with the multitudes' expectant hush, there
staggered an aged man, who made his tottering progress, beneath tier
after tier of indifferent or averted faces, looking in vain for a place,
until finally he came in front of the section occupied by the
Lacaedemonians, who rose as one man and offered him a seat!

* * * * *

Then there are the superiors and inferiors in wisdom. As we look back
through the mists of years to our student years, there stand out sharply
distinguished the kindly figures of our intellectual fathers. I recall
at this moment that man of infinite reserve behind the desk at Yale,
whose eye could flash with authority and yet kindle with concern at the
sight of the necessity of one of his boys--in Browning's thought, "As
sheathes a film the mother eagle's eye when her bruised eaglet

* * * * *

I need scarcely suggest the obvious pertinence of this command to the
relations of the pastor and his congregation. We cling very jealously
to the term, "Father," as it has been applied to the men of God in the
history of the Church. The picture is beautiful of the Roman Catholic
priest, conscious of the reluctance of her neighbors to bear to the poor
widow the evil news of the sudden death of her only son, walking quietly
up the gravel path, and covering with his healthy hands the two withered
ones as he met her at the doorway, answering her searching inquiry,
"Father?" with an unmistakable inflection of the words, "My child!" That
also of the American Protestant Episcopal bishop, leaving his little
birthday gathering already interrupted for three successive years, and
foregoing a breath of country air, after weary months of toil in the hot
city, to comfort a simple family hovering piteously about a little white
casket:--these are attitudes far more impressive than the ceremonious
exercise of their loftiest ecclesiastical functions.

* * * * *

Many lines of evidence from the side of reason converge on the Biblical
teaching that civil government is a divine institution. Perhaps one of
the most striking features of our later American growth is the colossal
selfishness of our people. The habit of freedom from restraint is fast
hardening into a lawlessness of character.

* * * * *

Listen to some of the palliating expressions with which our legal
atmosphere is permeated: "indiscreet and untactful," "the unwritten
law," "swift justice," "murder a fine art," and remember that these are
the terms that play around that triangle of corrupt judge, dallying
lawyer, and bribed and illiterate jury--all conspiring to "shove by
justice" with technicalities. And what are those sinister figures,
flitting and stalking through the land--the law-maker with his spoils,
the rioter with his rock, the anarchist with his bomb, the assassin
thrusting out his black hand, the lyncher with his battering ram, his
rope and his rifle; these are some of the outside lawless who conspire
with the inside lawless to make a scarecrow of American law, making it
the perch and not the terror of the birds of prey. And who knows how
soon all of these lawless ones may stand up together and, with a
monarch's voice cry, Havoc in the confines of this Republic!

* * * * *

But we must be conscious of our Heavenly Father behind the earthly type.
This unmistakably is the significance of the Biblical words: "To obey
your parents in the Lord"; "To be obedient unto your masters as unto
Christ"; "To fear God in honoring the face of the old man"; "To be
subject unto rulers as the ministers of God." And this leads us to the
great levelling truth, that we are all equally accountable to our
Heavenly Father, that we are nations and individuals, in the high
thought of Lincoln, "Under God."

* * * * *

This command carries with it the promise of a reward restated by Paul,
"Honor thy father and thy mother that it may be well with thee and that
thou mayest live long on the earth." In fact this is the logic of life.
This retributive justice is bound up in the laws of nature. Plants that
array themselves against these laws wither and die. And higher up in
the animal kingdom, Kipling's verse tells us that this inexorable
sequence prevails:

    "And these are the laws of the Jungle,
      And many and mighty are they;
    But the head and the hoof of the law is,
      And the haunch and the hump is--obey."

And it is true that obedience in a human being conduces to a long and
prosperous life. The beautiful truth is gradually emerging in science
and theology that religion is healthful. As one of my discerning fathers
was often wont to say, "The whole Bible is a text-book of Advanced
Biology, telling men how they may gain the fuller life."

* * * * *

Here and there the obedient die early, you say.--Yes; and this fact
sounds the deeper spiritual import of this promise, for they, sooner
than we, enter upon that eternal life, and pass over into that greener
Canaan, to that inheritance incorruptible and undefiled.

Standing one afternoon in the Gallery of the Louvre in Paris, a vision
of the perfect adjustment of our seemingly conflicting relations to
Cæsar and to God shone forth to me, in the divine gesture of the Master
in Da Vinci's wonderful painting of the Last Supper, where the hand
turned downward lays hold of the things of earth, and the hand turned
upward grips the things which are eternal, both of which obligations are
glorified in those later words of the Saviour spoken out of the agony of
the Cross: "Son, behold thy mother! Father, into thy hands I commend my



_Principal State College for Colored Students, Dover, Delaware_

[Note 45: An address delivered before the Wilmington District
Epworth League Convention.]

"Nature," says one, "is like a woman; in the morning she is fresh from
her bath, at noon she has on her working-dress, and at night she wears
her jewels."

Nature is most charming in the morning. The following extract from "A
Picture of Dawn" is a tribute Edward Everett pays to the morning.

"As we proceeded, the timid approach of the twilight became more
perceptible; the intense blue of the sky began to soften; the smaller
stars, like little children, went first to rest; the sister beams of the
Pleiades soon melted together; but the bright constellations of the west
and north remained unchanged. Steadily the wondrous transfiguration went
on. Hands of angels, hidden from mortal eyes, shifted the scenery of the
heavens; the glories of the night dissolved into the glories of the
dawn. The blue sky now turned more softly gray; the great watch-stars
shut up their holy eyes; the east began to kindle. Faint streaks of
purple soon blushed along the sky; the whole celestial concave was
filled with the inflowing tides of the morning light which came pouring
down from above in one great ocean of radiance; till at length, as we
reached the Blue Hills, a flash of purple fire blazed out from above the
horizon, and turned the dewy teardrops of flower and leaf into rubies
and diamonds. In a few seconds, the everlasting gates of the morning
were thrown wide open, and the lord of day, arrayed in glories too
severe for the gaze of man, began his state."

Nothing but the morning itself is more beautiful than this sublime

The best of the day is the morning. The brain is clearer, the nerves
more steady, the physical powers at their best before the sun reaches
its zenith. Weariness waits for noon, and the wise man chooses the
morning as the period for his most exacting toil.

Of all the year, the spring-time is the fairest. Nature wakes from the
restful sleep of winter. Grasses grow, flowers bloom, trees put forth
their leaves, birds build their nests, and he who hopes for harvest lays
the foundations of his future gain. The whole year is lost to him who
sleeps or idles away the seed-time. Late planting will grow, perhaps, if
excessive heat does not kill the seed or wither the shoot; but before it
comes to fruitage the frosts of autumn will blight it, flower and stem
and root. Man cannot alter God's plan. There is a time to sow and a time
to reap.

Life has its seasons also--its spring-time, its winter; morning, noon,
and night. The Scriptures enjoin us to work while it is called day; for
the night cometh when no man can work. In the parable the rich man who
went on a journey appointed each servant a task. To each of us is
entrusted some treasure; each is commanded to work. To labor is man's
appointed lot. This is his supreme mission in the world. He cannot avoid
it. Even the servant who sought to evade his responsibility went and
_digged_ in the earth.

Resisting the forces which tend to destroy life; surmounting the
obstacles to substantial success; breaking down barriers, commercial,
civil, social, political, and becoming a factor in the best life of his
community--the peer of any in mental and moral qualities, a
representative and an advocate of the principles of justice and
equality--this is the work of a man.

Such efforts do not tax the muscles only. They call forth the energies
of the entire being. Foresight, calculation, enterprise, courage,
self-control; fertility in resources; the ability to recognize and
embrace an opportunity, are all required. The inspiration must come from
above. All the powers of mind and body must be enlisted. Flagging
energies, lashed by an indomitable will, must persevere.

"Life is real and life is earnest" wrote the poet. He who does not take
life seriously has woefully failed to comprehend its significance. Toil,
service, sacrifice--these are the words which tell the true story of a
life. Willingly, it should be, but if not so, then reluctantly man must
toil, serve, sacrifice. For noble ends, it should be, but if not so,
then for base ends, he must toil, serve, sacrifice. With buoyant,
hopeful spirit, or with cheerless, heavy heart; toil, service,
sacrifice is the Divine decree, irrevocable, eternal.

* * * * *

It is my privilege to address the members of the Epworth League but my
thought embraces young people everywhere, especially those of my own

You live. A definite responsibility is thereby placed upon you. Not as a
burden to be borne with sadness, but rather as an act of beneficence has
the Creator called you into being and sent you forth upon your mission
in the world. He sends you to a world full of beauty. Sunshine,
fragrance, and melody are about you. Yet you may not be conscious of it.
Blindness or perverted vision may cloud the sky and fill the earth with
shadows. The clamors of selfish interest or lawless passion may change
the harmony into perpetual discord and din. Evil associations, impure
thoughts, and unholy practises create false ideas of life.

    "Faults in the life breed errors in the brain,
    And these reciprocally those again;
    The mind and conduct mutually imprint,
    And stamp their image in each other's mint."

Yet for him who hath eyes to see, the world is full of beauty. Nor
beauty only; but design is everywhere manifested, revealing the presence
of a supreme Intelligence and immeasurable love in fitting out for man a
perfect habitation. Whatever of wretchedness the world holds is
man-made. It is proof positive of a purpose to make man happy that so
many instruments of pleasure are placed at his hand. Each sense and
organ has its objects of exercise and enjoyment. Every natural
instinct, desire, and appetite is recognized, and its proper, legitimate
indulgence provided for. Blessed are they who find life joyous and who
choose it, not from a fear of death, but for what there is in life--who
can say: "I find death perfectly desirable, but I find life perfectly

You have life and you have youth. You live in life's morn; the
spring-time of your existence is upon you. Quick perceptions, swift and
keen intelligence, strong limbs, rich, pure blood, and a hope that
"springs eternal," are a portion of the heritage of youth. With
faculties unimpaired by age or excesses, you awake to an existence which
shall never end, and begin a destiny which shall be whatever you, by the
use or abuse of those faculties, shall determine.

Hereditary influences count for something. Environment has much to do
with the shaping of a life. Yet a responsibility without evasion rests
upon each individual soul. Not one is saved or lost without his own
voluntary contribution toward that end. It is an awful responsibility,
commensurate with the rewards offered to integrity and fidelity. The
thought that you must stand at the judgment-seat and answer for this
life should impress the most thoughtless with the importance of

Young people are the life-blood of the nation, the pillars of the state.
The future of the world is wrapped up in the lives of its youth. As
these unfold, the pages of history will tell the story of deeds noble
and base. Characters resplendent with jewels and ornaments of virtue
will be held up for the admiration of the world and the emulation of
generations not yet born. Others, thoughtlessly or wilfully ignoring the
plain path of duty, dwarfed, blighted, rejected of God and man, will be
sign-posts marking the road to ruin.

Think not that moderation will escape notice; you cannot slip by with
the crowd. Exceptional instances of vice or virtue attract more
temporary notice; but the thought, tone, and general sentiment of a
community give the inspiration and the impulse to those who outstrip the
masses in the race for the goal of honor or of shame. None so humble but
he has his share in moulding the destiny of the race. At the last, a
just balance will determine your share of praise or blame.

Young people should recognize their own worth and resolve to act a noble
part. "Let no man despise thy youth," says the Word. Despise not thou
thy youth. Fully appreciating your high privilege and your rich estate,
go forth into the world's broad field of battle, determined to make no
misuse of your day of opportunity. Be bold, vigilant, and strong. Be
true to the noblest instincts of your nature and have strong faith in

    "Call up thy noble spirit;
      Rouse all the generous energies of virtue,
    And, with the strength of Heaven-endued man,
      Repel the hideous foe."

    "Manhood, like gold, is tested in the furnace:
      A fire that purifies is fierce and strong;
    Rare statues gain art's ideal of perfection,
      By skilful strokes of chisel, wielded long."



_Assistant Attorney-General of the United States_

[Note 46: Boston, Massachusetts, Wednesday, February 12, 1913.]

_Mr. Speaker and Members of the House of Representatives:_

The power of the House to summons forthwith any citizen of the
Commonwealth has never been resisted; and so by designation of the
Honorable Speaker, in accordance with the order of the House, I am here
in answer to your summons. You have invited me, as a member of the
liberated race, to address you upon this Lincoln's Birthday in
commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.
Words would be futile to express my deep appreciation of this high
honor, however unworthily bestowed. Twice before have I met this
honorable House. I came first as an humble petitioner seeking redress
against discrimination on account of color. You then granted my prayer.
Some years later, I came as a member of this House, the last
representative of my race to sit in this body. You treated me then as a
man and an equal. And now the honors of an invited guest I shall cherish
as long as memory lasts.

To-day is the anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, the preserver
of the Union, the liberator of a race. "The mystic chords of memory,"
stretching from heart to heart of millions of Americans at this hour,
"swell the chorus of thanksgiving" to the Almighty for the life,
character, and service of the great President.

Four brief, crucial years he represented the soul of the Union
struggling for immortality--for perpetuity; in him was the spirit of
liberty struggling for a new birth among the children of men.

"Slavery must die," he said, "that the Union may live."

We have a Union to-day because we have Emancipation; we have
Emancipation because we have a united country. Though nearly fifty years
have elapsed since his martyr death and we see his images everywhere,
yet Lincoln is no mere legendary figure of an heroic age done in colors,
cast in bronze, or sculptured in marble; he is a living, vital force in
American politics and statecraft. The people repeat his wise sayings;
politicians invoke his principles; men of many political stripes profess
to be following in his footsteps. We of this generation can almost see
him in the flesh and blood and hear falling from his lips the sublime
words of Gettysburg, the divine music of the second inaugural and the
immortal Proclamation of Emancipation. We see this man of mighty thews
and sinews, his feet firmly planted in mother earth, his head towering
in the heavens. He lived among men but he walked with God. He was
himself intensely human, but his sense of right, of justice, seemed to
surpass the wisdom of men. A true child of nature, he beheld the races
of men in the raw without the artificial trappings of civilization and
the adventitious circumstances of birth or wealth or place, and could
see no difference in their natural rights.

"The Negro is a man," said he, "my ancient faith tells me that all men
are created equal."

As a man he was brave yet gentle, strong yet tender and sympathetic,
with the intellect of a philosopher, yet with the heart of a little
child. As a statesman he was prudent, wise, sagacious, far-seeing and
true. As President he was firm, magnanimous, merciful, and just. As a
liberator and benefactor of mankind, he has no peer in all human

As Lowell said in his famous commemoration ode, it still must be said:

    "Great captains, with their guns and drums,
      Disturb our judgment for the hour,
    But at last silence comes;
      These are all gone, and, standing like a tower,
    Our children shall behold his fame,
      The kindly-earnest, brave, foreseeing man,
    Sagacious, patient, dreading praise, not blame,
      New birth of our new soil, the first American."

There are only three great charters of freedom among Anglo-Saxon
peoples: the Magna Charta, which the barons wrung from King John at
Runnymede; the Declaration of Independence, which a few colonials threw
at the head of an obstinate king; the Emancipation Proclamation, which
Lincoln cast into the balance for the Union. The Magna Charta gave
freedom to the nobility; the Declaration of Independence brought freedom
down to the plain people; the Proclamation of Abraham Lincoln set free
the under-man, and proclaimed liberty to the slave and the serf
throughout the world.

Massachusetts had no small part in the second great charter of liberty.
This is attested not only by the signatures of Hancock, the Adams's,
Paine, and Gerry to that great document, but here are Boston, Concord,
Lexington, and Bunker Hill, and a thousand memorials of the Revolution
besides. Great indeed as was the part that Massachusetts played in
achieving independence, greater still was her share in the Emancipation
of the slave. Lincoln himself said that Boston had done more to bring on
the war than any other city; and when Emancipation had been achieved he
generously credited the result "to the logic and moral power of Garrison
and the anti-slavery people."

This day, therefore, belongs to Massachusetts. It is a part of her
glorious history. Emancipation was but the triumph of Puritan
principle--the right of each individual to eat his bread out of the
sweat of his own brow or not at all. The history of the abolition of
slavery in America could not be written with Massachusetts left out; the
history of Massachusetts herself, since the Revolution, would be but a
dreary, barren waste without the chapter of her part in the

The House does well to pause in its deliberations to commemorate this
anniversary. In 1837 your predecessors threw open the old Hall of
Representatives to the first meeting of the New England Anti-Slavery
Society. A year later, the legislature adopted resolutions against the
slave-trade, for the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia,
and the prohibition of slavery in the territories.

The fathers early enacted that there should be neither bond slaves nor
villeinage amongst us except captives taken in just wars and those
condemned judicially to serve. When it was attempted to land the first
cargo of slaves upon her soil, the people seized them and sent them back
to their own country and clime. In spite of the prayers and resolutions
and acts of the early fathers, a form of slavery grew up here, but it
was milder than the English villeinage: it resembled apprenticeship
except in the duration. The slave had many of the rights of free men;
the right to marry and the right to testify in court. Either with the
decision of Somerset's case in England or the adoption of the first
Constitution of the Commonwealth, during the Revolution, that
institution passed away forever. The voices of freedom were first raised
here. Whittier, Lowell, and Longfellow sang the songs of Emancipation.
Garrison, Phillips, and Parker were the prophets and disciples of
Lincoln. In the darkest days of slavery, John Quincy Adams held aloft
the torch of liberty and fed its flame with his own intrepid spirit.
Sumner was the scourge of God, the conscience of the state incarnate.

The people of Massachusetts were not only idealists, dreamers, and
molders of public opinion, but when thirty years of agitation had
reached its culmination in the Civil War, Massachusetts sent 150,000 of
her sons to sustain upon the battle-fields of the Republic the ideals
which she had advocated in the Halls of Congress, in the forum and the
market-place. The people of Massachusetts, true to their history and
traditions, have abolished here, so far as laws can do so, every
discrimination between race and color, and every inequality between man
and man.

I have recalled these things for no vainglorious purpose. We should
remind ourselves constantly that we have a history behind us, that we
have a character to sustain. Are we of this generation worthy
descendants of tea spillers and abolitionists? Are we living up to the
traditions of the Commonwealth, to the principles of the fathers in
relation to the treatment of citizens of color? I have observed with
aching heart and agonizing spirit during the last twenty years not only
the growing coldness and indifference on the part of our people to the
fate of the Negro elsewhere; but here in our own city the breaking up of
the old ties of friendship that once existed between people of color and
all classes of citizens, just after Emancipation; the gradual falling
away of that sympathy and support upon which we could always confidently
rely in every crisis. I have watched the spirit of race prejudice raise
its sinister shape in the labor market, in the business house, the
real-estate exchange, in public places, and even in our schools,
colleges, and churches.

I say all this with pain and sorrow. I would be the last to "soil my own
nest" or to utter one word that would reflect in the slightest degree
upon Massachusetts or her people. I love inexpressibly every foot of
Massachusetts soil, from the Berkshires to Essex, from the Capes to the
islands off our southern coast. I have studied her history; I know her
people, and when I have played out the little game with destiny, I want
to rest upon some Massachusetts hillside.

I can never forget the emotions that filled my breast when first I set
foot in Boston just a quarter of a century ago, a Negro lad in search of
education, freedom, and opportunity. As I walked these sacred streets I
lived over the Revolution, I saw them peopled with the mighty men of the
past. I hastened to make my obeisance first to the spot where Attucks
fell, the first martyr of the Revolution. I next looked out upon Bunker
Hill where Peter Salem stood guard over the fallen Warren. I said to
myself "here at last no black man need be ashamed of his race, here he
has made history." And then to scenes of still another period I turned
my gaze. I looked upon the narrow streets where Garrison was mobbed for
my sake. I viewed the place where a few brave men gave Shadrach to
freedom and to fame. The pictured walls of the old "cradle of liberty"
seemed still to echo to the silvery tones of Phillips. The molded face
of Governor Andrew spoke a benediction: "I know not what record of sins
awaits me in that other life, but this I do know, I never despised any
man because he was ignorant, because he was poor or because he was

I felt that here at last was liberty, and here I would make my home.

You say to me, "certainly you can find no fault." I gratefully
acknowledge the debt which I owe the people of Massachusetts, but I
cannot forget my brethren here. I cannot forget my children too, who
were born here and by the blessings of God and your help I will leave to
them and their children a freer and better Massachusetts even than I
have found her.

    "Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty."

I want upon this day to remind Massachusetts of her old ideals of
liberty, justice, equality for all beneath her pure white flag. Laws,
customs, institutions are nothing unless behind them stands a vital,
living, throbbing public sentiment in favor of their enforcement in the
spirit as well as in the letter. My friends, unless we can stay the
rising tide of prejudice; unless we can hark back to our old ideals and
old faiths, our very statues and memorials will some day mock us and cry
shame upon us.

National Emancipation was the culmination of a moral revolution, such as
the world has never seen. It was not as Garrison intended, a peaceful
revolution, the unanimous verdict of an awakened national conscience.
Thirty years of fierce agitation and fiercer politics made an appeal to
arms absolutely certain. A conflict of arms brought on by a conflict of
opinion was bound to be followed by a conflict of opinion, whichever
side won. So for fifty years since Emancipation, there has been more or
less conflict over the Negro and his place in the Republic. The results
of that conflict have in many instances been oppressive and even
disastrous to his freedom. Many things incidental to Emancipation and
vital to complete freedom are unfortunately still in the controversial
stages. The right of the Negro to cast a ballot on the same
qualifications as his other fellow citizens is not yet conceded
everywhere. Public sentiment has not yet caught up with the
Constitution, nor is it in accord with the principles of true democracy.
The right of the Negro to free access to all public places and to exact
similar treatment therein is not universal in this country. He is
segregated by law in some sections; he is segregated by custom in
others. He is subjected to many petty annoyances and injustices and
ofttimes deep humiliation solely on account of his color.

The explanation of this reactionary tendency sometimes given is that the
Negro is only a generation from slavery. It should not be forgotten that
individuals of every other race in history have at some time been held
slaves. The bondage of Israel is to-day only an epic poem. The Greek
Slave adorns simply a niche in some palace of art. The Servii of Rome
instructed the masters of the world. The Anglo-Saxon has not only worn
the Roman and Norman collars, but individuals of that race were sold as
slaves in the West Indies as late as the seventeenth century. White men
have enslaved white men, black men have enslaved black men. The place of
human slavery in the divine economy I do not understand, nor do I defend
it; I am glad that the human race has long since passed that stage in
its development. No race has a right to lord it over another or seek to
degrade it because of a history of servitude; all have passed through
this cruel experience; the history of the black race is a little more
recent, that is all. The fact of slavery, therefore, should not impose
the slightest limitation upon the liberty of the Negro or restriction
upon his rights as a man and citizen.

The one great phase of the race question agitating the country to-day is
that of intermarriage and miscegenation. It is a serious question; it is
a vital question. No one will deny the right of any man to protect his
family stock, or the right of a group to preserve its racial integrity.
The facts show, however, that laws, however stringent, will not
accomplish it. I submit for the serious consideration of the American
people that the only danger of infusion from the Negro side is simply
one thing, and that is summed up in one word "injustice." Why is it that
thousands of colored men and women go over to the other side, "pass" as
we say? It is for no other purpose than to escape the social ostracism
and civic disabilities of the Negro. Why is it that we see so many
pathetic attempts to be white? It is simply to escape injustice. In a
country where every opportunity is open to the white, in business, in
society, in government, and the door shut against or reluctantly opened
to the black, the natural unconscious effort of the black is to get
white. Where black is a badge of an inferior caste position in society,
the natural effort of the black is to find some method of escape. I do
not advocate intermarriage; I do not defend miscegenation. The same
thing is true to-day as it was true in the time of Lincoln. In his
debates with Douglass in 1858, he noted "that among the free States,
those which make the colored man the nearest equal to the white have
proportionally the fewest mulattoes, the least amalgamation."

I submit therefore, that the only sure way to put an end to this
tendency or desire, so far as the Negro is concerned, is to accord him
all his public and political rights and to treat each individual upon
his merits as a man and citizen, according to him such recognition as
his talents, his genius, his services to the community or the state
entitles him. Make black, brown, yellow, the "open sesame" to the same
privileges and the same opportunities as the white, and no one will care
to become white.

Upon this day which commemorates the emancipation of the black and the
larger freedom of the white race, the redemption of the state and the
birth of a new nation, I would bring to you a message not of blackness
and despair but of hope--hope triumphant, hope, that Watts has pictured
as blind with one string to her lyre, that sees not the star just ahead,
but sits supreme at the top of the world.

Emancipation redeemed the precious promises of the Declaration of
Independence. It rid the Republic of its one great inconsistency, a
government of the people resting upon despotism; it rescued the ship of
state from the rocks of slavery and sectionalism, and set her with sails
full and chart and compass true once more upon the broad ocean of
humanity to lead the world to the haven of true human brotherhood. We
have encountered storms and tempests at times; the waves of race
antipathy have run high, and the political exigencies of the hour seem
to overcast the heavens with clouds of darkness and despair, yet I have
never lost faith, because the fathers set her course, and God, the
Master Mariner, has ever been at the helm. "In giving freedom to the
slave we insured freedom to the free." In a country where all men were
free none could be slaves. Emancipation raised labor to its true dignity
and gave a new impetus to industry, commerce, and civilization. Under
free labor men of many climes have come here to help develop the natural
resources of the country, and the nation has entered upon a period of
progress such as the world has never before witnessed in any time or

What of the Negro himself? Has he justified Emancipation? The statistics
of his physical, intellectual, and material progress are known to all.
He has increased his numbers nearly threefold. The Negro population is
to-day nearly three times that of the whole country at the time of the
adoption of the Constitution. It is nearly three times that of New
England in 1860. He has reduced his illiteracy to thirty per cent. He
owns nearly $700,000,000 worth of property including nearly one million
homes. He has shown that his tutelage in American civilization has not
been vain; that he could live under the most trying and oppressive

Three milestones in his progress have been reached and passed:

First: The North and South agree that the abolition of slavery was right
and just.

Second: The people of the North and South agree that every industrial
opportunity shall be given to the Negro.

Third: The right of the Negro to be educated and the duty of the state
to see to it that he has every opportunity for education are
established. Public opinion has settled forever the right of the Negro
to be free to labor and to educate. These three things constitute no
slight advance; they are the fundamental rights of civilization.

The prophecy of Lincoln has been fulfilled, that Emancipation would be
"An Act, which the world will forever applaud and God must forever
bless." Moreover it should not be forgotten, as Bancroft the historian
has said, that "it is in part to the aid of the Negro in freedom that
the country owes its success, in its movement of regeneration--that the
world of mankind owes the continuance of the United States as an example
of a Republic." The American Negro in freedom has brought new prestige
and glory to his country in many ways. Tanner, a Georgia boy, is no
longer a Negro artist, but an American artist whose works adorn the
galleries of the world. Paul Laurence Dunbar, an American poet, who
singing songs of his race, voicing its sorrows and griefs with
unrivalled lyric sweetness and purity, has caught the ear of the world.
The matchless story of Booker Washington, the American educator, is told
in many tongues and in many lands.

The history of the world has no such chapter as the Negro's fifty years
of freedom. _The duty of the hour is to unshackle him and make him
wholly free._ When the Negro is free from the vexatious annoyances of
color and has only the same problems of life as any other men, his
contribution to the general welfare of his country will be greater than
ever before.

Whatever be his present disadvantages and inequalities, one thing is
absolutely certain, that nowhere else in the world does so large a
number of people of African descent enjoy so many rights and privileges
as here in America. God has not placed these 10,000,000 here upon the
American Continent in the American Republic for naught. There must be
some work for them to do. He has given to each race some particular part
to play in our great national drama. I predict that within the next
fifty years all these discriminations, disfranchisements, and
segregation will pass away. Antipathy to color is not natural, and the
fear of ten by eighty millions of people is only a spook of politics, a
ghost summoned to the banquet to frighten the timid and foolish.

I care nothing for the past; I look beyond the present; I see a great
country with her territories stretching from the rising to the setting
sun, with a climate as varied as a tropical day and an Arctic night,
with a soil blessed by the fruits of the earth and nourished by the
waters under it; I see a great country tenanted by untold millions of
happy, healthy human beings; men of every race that God has made out of
one blood to inherit the earth, a great human family, governed by
righteousness and justice, not by greed and fear--in which peace and
happiness shall reign supreme.

Men more and more are beginning to realize that the common origin and
destiny of the human race give to each species the right to occupy the
earth in peace, prosperity, and plenty, and that the duty of each race
is to promote the happiness of all. The movements for social and
industrial justice and the right of the people to rule are world-wide.

The American people are fast losing their provincial character. They are
to-day a great world power with interests and possessions upon every
part of the globe. Their horizon is the world; they are thinking in
terms of the universe, and speaking in the tongues of all men.

With the widening of men's visions they must realize that the basis of
true democracy and human brotherhood is the common origin and destiny of
the human race; that we are all born alike, live alike, and die alike,
that the laws of man's existence make absolutely no distinction.

I wandered recently into Westminster Abbey. I beheld all around me the
images and effigies of the illustrious and the great,--kings, rulers,
statesmen, poets, patriots, explorers, and scientists; I trampled upon
the graves of some; I stood before the tombs of kings, some dead twelve
centuries; there the wisest and merriest of monarchs and the most pious
and dissolute of kings slept side by side. As illustrating the vanity of
triumphs of personal glory, on one side of the Chapel of Henry VII,
rests Mary, Queen of Scots, and almost directly opposite, all that
remains of Elizabeth, her executioner. I stood before the tomb of the
great Napoleon; I wandered through his palaces at Versailles and
Fontainebleau with all of their magnificence and splendor, and I
recalled the period of his power and glory among men, and yet, he too
died. Then I passed a Potter's field and I looked upon the graves of the
unknown, graves of the pauper and the pleb, and I realized that they
were at last equal, those who slept in Valhalla and those who slept in
the common burying-ground, and that they would each and all hear the
first or the second trump of the resurrection "according to the deeds
done in the body and the flesh, according to whether they were good or
evil." In the democracy of death all are equal. Then men, my brothers,
our duty is to make life in human society the same great democracy of
equality of rights, of privileges, of opportunities, for all the
children of men. There is nothing else worth while.

God grant to the American people this larger view of humanity, this
greater conception of human duty. In a movement for democracy, for
social and industrial justice, for the complete Emancipation of the
Negro from the disabilities of color, Massachusetts must now, as in the
past, point the way. If we fail here, with traditions and history such
as are ours behind us, can we succeed elsewhere? The Great Emancipator
speaks to us at this hour and furnishes the solution for all our race
problems. "Let us discard all this quibbling about this man and the
other man, this race and the other race, and the other race being
inferior and therefore must be placed in an inferior position. Let us
discard all these things and unite as one people throughout this land,
until we shall once more stand up declaring that 'all men are created

God grant that the American people, year by year, may grow more like
Lincoln in charity, justice, and righteousness to the end that "the
government of the people, for the people, by the people, shall not
perish from the earth."



[Note 47: Delivered at Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, on the
occasion of the Centenary of the birth of David Livingstone, March 7,

Hamilton Wright Mabie says that the question for each man to settle is
not what he _would_ do if he had means, time, influence, and educational
advantages, but what he _will_ do with the things he has. In all history
there are few men who have answered this question. Among them none have
answered it more effectively than he whom we have gathered to honor
to-night--David Livingstone.

The term "social service," which is on every one's lips now, was as yet
uncoined when David Livingstone was born. But it was none the less true,
that without overmuch prating of the ideal which is held up to the man
of to-day as the only one worth striving for, the sturdy pioneers of
Livingstone's day and ilk realized to the highest the ideal of man's
duty to his fellow-man.

The life of David Livingstone is familiar to all of you. From your
childhood you have known the brief data of his days. He was born in
Lanarkshire, Scotland, March 19, 1813. He began working in a
cotton-factory at the age of ten, and for ten years thence, educated
himself, reading Latin, Greek, and finally pursuing a course of
medicine and theology in which he graduated. In 1840, firmly believing
in his call, he offered his services to the London Missionary Society,
by whom he was ordained, and sent as a medical missionary to South
Africa, where he commenced his labors. In 1849, he discovered Lake
Ngami; in 1852, he explored the Zambezi River. In 1856, he discovered
the wonderful Victoria Falls, and then returned to England, where he was
overwhelmed with honors. In 1857, he published his first book, hardly
realizing that it was an epoch-making volume, and that he had made an
unprecedented contribution alike to literature, science, and religion.
In the same year, he severed his connection with the Missionary society,
believing that he could best work unhampered by its restrictions. He was
appointed British Consul for the East Coast of Africa, and commander of
an expedition to explore Eastern and Central Africa. He discovered the
Lakes Shirwa and Nyassa in 1859; published his second book during a
visit to England, 1864-65. He returned to Africa, started to explore the
interior, and was lost to the world for two years. He re-appeared in
1867, having solved the problem of the sources of the Nile. From then
until 1871, when he was found by Stanley, suffering the most pitiful
privations, his was a record of important discoveries and explorations.
After parting with Stanley in 1872, he continued his explorations, and
died in 1873. His body was interred in Westminster Abbey in 1874.

This is a meagre account of the life of David Livingstone. The romance
and wonder of it do not appear on the surface; the splendor of the
heroic soul is lost in the dry chronology of dates; the marvelous
achievement of self-sacrifice is not visible. Yet the wildest fantasies
of medieval troubadours pale into insignificance when placed side by
side with the life-story of David Livingstone.

What has this modern romance in it for the man of to-day? An infinity of
example, of hope, of the gleam to follow. The most salient thing about
Livingstone's early life is the toil and the privation which he endured
gladly, in order to accomplish that which he had set himself to do.
Listen to his own words in describing the long hours spent in the
cotton-mill. Here he kept up his studies by placing his book on the top
of the machine, so that he could catch sentence after sentence as he
passed his work, learning how completely to abstract his mind from the
noises about him. "Looking back now on that life of toil, I cannot but
feel thankful that it formed such a material part of my early education,
and were it possible, I would like to begin life over again in the same
lowly style, and to pass through the same hardy training."

I wonder how many of the modern men, whose privations in early life in
no wise approached those of our hero look back with gratitude upon their
early days? Are we not prone to excuse and condone our shortcomings,
either of character or of achievement, by murmuring at the hard fate
which deprived us of those advantages which more fortunate brothers and
sisters enjoyed in infancy and youth? Do we not to-day swing too far in
the direction of sickly sentimentality and incline to wrap ourselves,
and those about us, in the deadening cotton-wool of too much care? Were
it not better if a bit more of the leaven of sturdy struggle were
introduced into the life of the present-day youth? Strength of character
and strength of soul will rise to their own, no matter what the
struggles be to force them upward.

In keeping with this studious concentration which is shown in his work
in the cotton-mill, was Livingstone's ideal of thorough preparation for
his work. On his first missionary journey, before penetrating into the
interior, he stopped at a little station, Lepelole, and there for six
months cut himself off from all European society in order to gain an
insight into the habits, ways of thinking, laws, and language of the
natives. To this he ascribed most of his success as a missionary and
explorer, for Livingstone's way was ever the gentle method of those who
comprehend--not the harsh cruelty of those who feel superior to the ones
among whom they work. In a day whose superficiality is only equalled by
the ease with which we gloze over the faults of the unprepared, this bit
of information of Livingstone's preparation comes like a refreshing
reminder that true worth is always worth while.

When Livingstone gave up his purely missionary labors and turned his
life channel into the stream of scientific investigation, the same
thoroughness of preparation is shown. He did not work for immediate
results, attained by shallow touching of the surface, or for hasty
conclusions. His was the close observation and careful and accurate
deductions of the mind trained by science to be patient and await
results. Rather than be inaccurate, he would wait until he knew he was
correct. A quarter of a century after Livingstone died a compatriot of
his, Robert Louis Stevenson, said that among the hardest tasks that life
sets for a man is "to await occasions, and hurry never." Livingstone
learned this thoroughly.

In keeping with the quietness, simplicity, and thoroughness of this
truly great man was the meeting between him and Stanley when that
redoubtable youth found him in the heart of the Dark Continent. Life is
essentially a dramatic thing, for as Carlyle says, "Is not every
deathbed the fifth act of a tragedy?" But I sometimes think that we miss
the drama and poetry of every-day life because it seems so commonplace.
We look abroad and afar for great moments, and great moments pass
unheeded each hour. So to those two--the toil-worn and weary explorer
and the youthful Stanley, full of enthusiasm, albeit dimmed by the
hardships and disappointments of his long search, that moment of first
meeting must have seemed essentially commonplace. There was a wonder in
the encounter, but like all great emotions and great occasions there was
a simplicity, so that the greetings were as commonplace as if occurring
in a crowded street. Thirty years had passed since the explorer had
dedicated himself to the task of making the world know Africa, and he
was an old man, worn-out, bent, frail, and sorrow-stricken. But courage
was unfaltering, faith undimmed, power unabated. Had Stanley been a few
months later, much of his work would have been lost, and his death even
more pitiful than it was--yet he could smile and be patient and

As Stanley phrases it, "Suppose Livingstone, following the custom of
other travellers, had hurried to the coast, after he had discovered Lake
Bangweolo, to tell the news to the geographical world; then had returned
to discover Moero, and run away again, then come back once more to
discover Kamolondo, and to race back again. But no, he not only
discovers the Chambezi, Lake Bangweolo, Luapula River, Lake Moero,
Lualaba River, and Lake Kamolondo, but he still tirelessly urges his
steps forward to put the final completion to the map of the grand
lacustrine river system. Had he followed the example of ordinary
explorers, he would have been running backwards and forwards to tell the
news, instead of exploring, and he might have been able to write a
volume upon the discovery of each lake and earn much money thereby."

This was no negative exploration. It was the hard, earnest labor of
years, self-abnegation, enduring patience, and exalted fortitude, such
as ordinary men fail to exhibit. And he had achieved a wonderful deed.
The finding of the poles, north and south, is no greater feat than his.
For, after all, what is it to humanity that the magnetic pole, north or
south, is a few degrees east or west of a certain point in the frozen
seas and barren ice mountains? What can humanity offer as a reward to
those whose bodies lie under cairns of ice save a barren recognition of
their heroism? What have their lives served, beyond that of examples of
heroism and determination? Bronze tablets will record their deeds, but
no races will arise in future years to call them blessed. Cold marble
will enshrine their memory; but there will be no fair commerce, nor
civilization, nor the thankful prayers of those who have been led to
know God.

In his earlier years of exploration, Livingstone became convinced that
the success of the white missionary in a field like Africa is not to be
reckoned by the tale of doubtful conversions he can send home each year,
that the proper work of such men was that of pioneering, opening up,
starting new ground, leaving native agents to work it out in detail. The
whole of his subsequent career was a carrying out of this idea. It was
the idea of commerce, bringing the virgin country within the reach of
the world, putting the natives in that relation to the rest of humanity
which would most nearly make for their efficiency, if not in their own
generation, at least in the next. Shall we not say that this is the
truest ideal of social service--to plan, not for the present, but for
the future; to be content, not with the barren achievement of
exploration, the satisfaction that comes with the saying, "I am the
first who has trod this soil!" but to be able to say, "Through me,
generations may be helped?"

Says a biographer of Dr. Livingstone, "His work in exploration is marked
by rare precision and by a breadth of observation which will make it
forever a monument to the name of one of the most intrepid travellers of
the nineteenth century. His activity embraced the field of the
geographer, naturalist, benefactor of mankind, and it can justly be
said that his labors were the first to lift the veil from the 'Dark

During the thirty years of his work he explored alone over one-third of
the vast continent; a feat which no single explorer has ever equalled.
But it must be remembered that even though he had severed his connection
with the missionary society that he regarded himself to the last as a
"Pioneer Missionary."

One of the most fascinating subjects of controversy since the time of
Herodotus was the problem of the source of the Nile. Poetry, from the
description of the Garden of Eden and the writings of Ptolemy to the
Kubla Kahn of Coleridge, ran rife over the four fountains out of which
flowed the wonderful river. To Livingstone was reserved the supreme
honor of settling for all time the secret of this most poetic river of
mystery. Long ere this he had been honored with a gold medal from the
Royal Geographical Society. How futile must the bit of metal have seemed
to this dark, silent man, whose mind had grown away from bauble and
tinsel, and who had learned in the silences the real value of the
trinkets of the world.

When he had discovered the Victoria Falls, he had completed in two years
and a half the most remarkable and most fruitful journey on record,
reconstructed the map of Africa, and given the world some of the most
valuable land it ever could possess. The vast commercial fields of ivory
were opened up to trade; the magnificent power of the Victoria Falls
laid bare to the sight of civilized man. We can imagine him standing on
the brink of the thunderous cataract of the Victoria gazing at its
waters as they dashed and roared over the brink of the precipice,

    "--Like stout Cortez--when with eagle eyes
    He stared at the Pacific, and all his men
    Look'd at each other with a wild surmise,
    Silent, upon a peak in Darien."

To this man, who had opened up a continent; who had penetrated not only
into the heart of the forest, but had made himself one with the savages
who were its denizens; who knew and understood them as human beings, and
not as beasts, the slavery trade was, as he expressed it, "the open sore
of Africa." Over and again he voiced his belief that the Negro freeman
was a hundred times more valuable than the slave. He repeatedly enjoined
those who had the fitting out of his expeditions not to send him slaves
to accompany him on his journeys, but freemen, as they were more
trustworthy. He voiced the fundamental truth that he who is his own
master is he who obeys and believes in his master.

The slave trade in Africa was dealt its death-blow by Dr. Livingstone.
Portugal had foisted the shame of centuries upon the Dark Continent, and
openly defied decency and honor. Livingstone's example and his death
acted like an inspiration, filling Africa with an army of explorers and
missionaries, and raising in Europe so powerful a feeling against the
slave trade that it may be considered as having received its death-blow.
Dear to his heart was Lincoln, the Emancipator, an ideal hero whom he
consistently revered. Away to the southwest from Kamolondo is a large
lake which discharges its waters by the important river, Lomami, into
the great Lualaba. To this lake, known as the Chobungo by the natives,
Dr. Livingstone gave the name of Lincoln, in memory of him for whom your
noble institution was named. This was done because of a vivid impression
produced on his mind by hearing a portion of Lincoln's inauguration
speech from an English pulpit, which related to the causes that induced
him to issue the Emancipation Proclamation. To the memory of the man
whom Livingstone revered he has contributed a monument more durable than
brass or stone.

This strange, seemingly almost ascetic man sets before us of to-day an
almost impossible standard of living. One idea mastered him--to give
Africa to the world. His life was a success, as all lives must be which
have a single aim. Life was clear, elemental almost to him, and to the
man whose ambition is a unit; who sees but one goal, shining clearly
ahead, success is inevitable, though it may be masked under the guise of
poverty and hardship. Livingstone had a higher and nobler ambition than
the mere pecuniary sum he might receive, or the plaudits of the
unthinking multitude; he followed the dictates of duty. Never was such a
willing slave to that abstract virtue. His inclination impelled him
home, the fascinations of which it required the sternest resolves to
resist. With every foot of new ground he travelled over, he forged a
chain of sympathy which should hereafter bind all other nations to
Africa. If he were able to complete this chain, a chain of love, by
actual discovery and description of the people and nations that still
lived in darkness, so as to attract the good and charitable of his own
land to bestir themselves for their redemption and salvation--this,
Livingstone would consider an ample reward. "A delirious and fatuous
enterprise, a Quixotic scheme!" some will say. Not so; he builded better
than even he knew or dared hope, and posterity will reap the reward.

The missionary starting out must resolve to bear poverty, suffering,
hardship, and, if need be, to lose his life. The explorer must resolve
to be impervious to exquisite little tortures, to forget comforts, and
be a stranger to luxuries; to lose _his_ life, even, in order that the
world may add another line or dot to its maps. The explorer-missionary
must do all these things, and add to them the zeal for others that shall
illumine his labors, and make him at one with God. David Livingstone had
all these qualities, coupled with the sublime indifference of the truly
great to the mere side issues of life. You and I sit down to our
comfortable meals, sleep in our well-appointed beds, read our Bibles
with perfunctory boredom, and babble an occasional prayer for those who
endure hardships--when we are reminded from the pulpit to do so. When we
read of some awful calamity, such as has blazoned across the pages of
history within the past few weeks, we shudder that men should lay down
their lives in the barren wastes of ice. When we read of the thirty
years of steady suffering which Livingstone endured in the forests of
Africa, the littleness of our own lives comes home to us with awful
realization. You who fear to walk the streets with a coat of last
year's cut, listen to his half whimsical account of how he "came to the
Cape in 1852, with a black coat eleven years out of fashion, and Mrs.
Livingstone and the children half naked." You who shudder at the tale of
a starving child in the papers, and lamely wonder why the law allows
such things, read his recital of the sufferings of his wife and little
ones during the days without water under a tropic sun, and of the
splendid heroism of the mother who did not complain, and the father who
did not dare meet her eye, for fear of the unspoken reproach therein.

He was never in sufficient funds, and what little means he could gather
here and there were often stolen from him, or he found himself cheated
out of what few supplies he could get together to carry on his travels.
Months of delay occurred, and sometimes it seemed that all his labors
and struggles would end in futility; that the world would be little
better for his sufferings; yet that patient, Christian fortitude
sustained him with unfaltering courage through the most distressing
experiences. Disease, weakening, piteous, unromantic, unheroic, wasted
his form; ulcers, sores, horrible and hideous, made his progress slow
and his work sometimes a painful struggle over what many a man would
have deemed impossible barriers. The loss of his wife came to him twelve
years after she had elected to cast in her lot with his, but like Brutus
of old, he could exclaim,

    "With meditating that she must die once,
    I have the patience to endure it now.

Stanley could but marvel at such patience. On that memorable day when
they met, and the younger man gave the doctor his letters, he tells how
"Livingstone kept the letter-bag on his knee, then, presently opened it,
looked at the letters contained there, read one or two of his children's
letters, his face in the meanwhile lighting up. He asked me to tell him
the news, "No, Doctor," said I, "read your letters first, which I am
sure you must be impatient to read." "Ah," said he, "I have waited years
for letters, and I have been taught patience."

To you, of the younger generation, what a marvel, what a world of
meaning in those words--"I have been taught patience." We, who fret and
chafe because the whole world will not bend its will to our puny
strivings, and turn its whole course that we might have our unripe
desires fulfilled, should read and re-read of the man who could wait,
because he knew that time and all eternity would be bent to meet his
desires in time.

Livingstone's is a character that we cannot help but venerate; that
calls forth all one's enthusiasm; that evokes nothing but sincerest
admiration. He was sensitive, but so is any man of a high mind and
generous nature; he was sensitive on the point of being doubted or
criticised by the easy-chair geographers, lolling comfortably in their
clubs and scanning through their monocles the maps which the hard
working travellers had made. He was humble-souled, as are all the truly
great. His gentleness never forsook him; his hopefulness never deserted
him. No harassing anxiety, distraction of mind, long separation from
home and kindred, could make him complain. He thought all would come
out right at last, such faith had he in the goodness of Providence. The
sport of adverse circumstances; the plaything of the miserable slaves,
which were persistently sent him from Zanzibar, baffled and worried,
even almost to the grave; yet he would not desert the charge imposed
upon him. To the stern dictates of duty alone did he sacrifice his home
and ease, the pleasures, refinements, and luxuries of civilized life.
His was the Spartan heroism, the inflexibility of the Roman, the
enduring heroism of the Englishman--never to relinquish his work, though
his heart yearned for home; never to surrender his obligations, until he
could write "Finis" to his work.

Yet who shall say that the years spent alone at the very heart of Nature
had not made him the possessor of that "inward eye," which, as
Wordsworth says, "is the bliss of solitude." For many years he lived in
Africa deprived of books, and yet when Stanley found him, he learned to
his surprise, that Livingstone could still recite whole poems from
Byron, Burns, Tennyson, Longfellow, and other great poets. The reason is
found in the fact that all his life he lived within himself. He lived in
a world in which he revolved inwardly, out of which he awoke only to
attend to his immediate practical necessities. It was a happy inner
world, peopled with his own friends, acquaintances, relatives, readings,
ideas, and associations. Blessed is the man who has found the inner life
more real than the trivial outer one. To him mere external annoyances
are but as the little insects, which he may brush away at will. No man
can be truly great who has not built up for himself a subjective world
into which he may retire at will. The little child absorbed in a
mythical land peopled by fairies and Prince Charmings is nearest to
possessing such an inner life; and we must become as little children. To
some it is a God-given gift; others may acquire it, as Jack London tells
us, by "going into the waste places, and there sitting down with our
souls." There comes then, the overwhelming realization of the charms and
beauties of nature--man is a pygmy, an abstraction, an unreality. This
had come to our hero. Added to the strength of his inner life
Livingstone had the deep sympathy with Nature in all her moods. He
became enthusiastic when he described the beauties of the Moero scenery.
The splendid mountains, tropical vegetation, thundering cataracts, noble
rivers, stirred his soul into poetic expression. His tired spirit
expanded in the presence of the charms of nature. He could never pass
through an African forest, with its solemn stillness and serenity,
without wishing to be buried quietly under the dead leaves where he
would be sure to rest undisturbed. In England, there was no elbow-room,
the graves were often desecrated, and ever since he had buried his wife
in the woods of Shupanga, he had sighed for just such a spot, where his
weary bones would receive the eternal rest they coveted. But even this
last wish was denied him, and the noisy honors and crowded crypt of
Westminster Abbey claimed him, far away from the splendid solitude he
craved. All Africa should have been his tomb. He should never have been
forced to share with hundreds of others a meagre and scant
resting-place. Yet there is food for rejoicing in the knowledge, that
though his body was borne away, his heart was buried by his beloved
natives in the forest.

The study of Dr. Livingstone would not be even superficially complete if
we did not take the religious side of his character into consideration.
By religion, we do not mean the faith he professed, the particular
tenets he believed, the especial catechism he studied, or any
hair-splitting doctrine he might have upheld, but that deeper ethical
side of manhood, without which there can be no true manhood.
Livingstone's religion was not of the theoretical kind, but it was a
constant, earnest, sincere practise. It was neither demonstrative nor
loud, but manifested itself in a quiet, practical way, and was always at
work. It was not aggressive, nor troublesome, nor impertinent. In him,
religion exhibited its loveliest features; it governed his conduct not
only towards his servants, but towards the natives, the bigoted
Mohammedans, and all with whom he came in contact. Without it,
Livingstone, with his ardent temperament, his enthusiasm, his high
spirit and courage, must have become uncompanionable, and a hard master.
Religion had tamed him, and made him a Christian gentleman; the crude
and wilful were refined and subdued; religion had made him the most
companionable of men and indulgent of masters--a man whose society was
pleasurable to a high degree.

If his life held for us no other message than this, it would hold
enough. Unfortunately the youth of to-day is apt to chafe when the
ideal of Christianity and manly religion is held up to him. He thinks of
the religious man as a milksop, a mollycoddle. He cannot associate him
in his mind with the doing of great deeds, the thinking of great
thoughts. His ideal of manhood is the ruthless Man on Horseback, with
too often a disregard of the sacred things of life. Sometimes, if the
youth of to-day thinks at all, he runs riot into ethics, forgetting
that, after all, there could be no ethics without a firm base of
religion. And so he wastes many precious years before he learns that all
the greatest men whom the world has known drew their strength and power
from the unseen and the spiritual.

We have noticed that Livingstone's religion was not aggressive nor
impertinent. Early in his career as a missionary, he recognized the
truth that if he were to exercise any influence on the native Africans,
it would not be by bringing to them an abstraction in place of their own
savage ideals. His influence depended entirely upon persuasion, and by
awakening within their minds the sense of right and wrong. "We never
wished them to do right," he says, "because it would be pleasing to us,
nor think themselves to blame when they did wrong." Worldly affairs, and
temporal benefits with the natives were paramount, so he did not force
abstractions upon them but, with a keen insight into human nature, as
well as into savage human nature, he reached their higher selves through
the more worldly.

His was a pure and tender-hearted nature, full of humanity and sympathy,
modest as a maiden, unconscious of his own greatness, with the
simplicity we have noted before, the simplicity of the truly great. His
soul could be touched to its depths by the atrocities of the Arab
slave-traders, yet he forgot his own sufferings in the desire to make
others immune from suffering. He had but one rule of life, that which he
gave to the Scotch school children, whom he once addressed:

    "Fear God and work hard!"

* * * * *

It is one hundred years since this quiet, high-souled man was given the
world, in the little Scotch village, and yet another hundred may pass
away and still his life will be as a clarion call to the youth of the
world to emulate his manhood. For the world needs men now, as it never
needed them before,

    "Men, high-minded men,
    With powers as far above dull brutes endued
    In forest brake or den, as beasts excel cold rocks and rambles rude."

Such a man was Livingstone, not afraid to be meek in order to be great;
not afraid to "fear God and work hard;" not ashamed to stoop in order
that he might raise others to his high estate. He gave the world a
continent and a conscience; with the lavishness almost of Nature herself
he bestowed cataracts and rivers, lakes and mountains, forests and
valleys, upon his native land. He stirred the soul of the civilized
world to the atrocities of the slave trade, and he made it realize that
humanity may be found even in the breast of a savage. When he laid down
his life in the forest he loved, he laid upon the altar of humanity and
science the costliest and sweetest sacrifice that it had known for many
a weary age.

What message has this life for us to-day, we the commonplace, the
mediocre, the unknown to fame and fortune? Shall we fold our hands when
we read of such heroes and say, "Ah, yes, he could be great, but I? I am
weak and humble, I have not the opportunity?" Who was more humble than
the poor boy spinning in the cotton-mill; who was less constrained by
Fortune's frowns than the humble missionary? His life brings to us the
message of doing well with that little we have.

We cannot all be with Peary at the North Pole, nor die the death of the
hero, Scott, on the frozen Antarctic continent. It is not given to us to
be explorers; it is not given us to be pioneers; we may not discover
vast continents, name great lakes, nor gaze with wonder-stricken eyes
upon the rolling of a mighty unknown river. But to each and all of us
comes the divine opportunity to carve for himself a niche, be it ever so
tiny, in the memories of men. We can heed the admonition of Carlyle, "Be
no longer a Chaos, but a World, or even a Worldkin. Produce! Produce!
Were it but the pitifullest infinitesimal fraction of a Product, produce
it in God's name! 'Tis the utmost thou hast in thee, out with it then!"

The life of service; the life of unselfish giving--this must
Livingstone's life mean to us. Unselfish, ungrudging lavishing of life
and soul, even to the last drop of heart's blood. Service that does not
hesitate because the task seems small, or the waiting weary; service
that does not fear to be of no account in the eyes of the world. Truly,
indeed, might Wordsworth's apostrophe to Milton be ascribed to him:

    "Thy soul was like a star and dwelt apart;
    Thou hadst a voice whose sound was like the sea;
    Pure as the naked heavens, majestic, free,
    So didst thou travel on life's common way
    In cheerful godliness, and yet thy heart
    The lowliest duties on itself did lay."



[Note 48: Reprinted from _Kelly Miller's Monographic Magazine_,
April, 1913.]

We must keep clearly in mind the proposition that the educational
process is always under domination of contemporary opinion. The
education prescribed for any class is likely to be conditioned upon the
presumed relationship of that class to the social body. When woman was
regarded as an inferior creature, whose destiny was to serve as a tool
and plaything of man, she was accorded only such education as would fit
her for this subsidiary function. Any other training was regarded as
unnecessary and mischievous. It is only within comparatively recent
times, when man began to realize the essential human quality and powers
of the female sex, and deemed it not mockery to place her on the same
footing with himself, that the comprehensive education of woman has
become a possibility.

The traditional relation of the American Negro to the society of which
he forms a part is too well known to need extensive treatment in this
connection. The African slave was introduced into this country as a pure
animal instrumentality to perform the rougher work under dominion of his
white lord and master. There was not the remotest thought of his human
personality. No more account was taken of his higher qualities than of
the higher susceptibilities of the lower animals. His mission was
considered to be as purely mechanical as that of the ox which pulls the
plow. Indeed, his human capabilities were emphatically denied. It was
stoutly contended that he did not possess a soul to be saved in the
world to come nor a mind to be enlightened in the world that now is.
Under the dominion of this dogma, education was absolutely forbidden
him. It became a crime even to attempt to educate this _tertium quid_
which was regarded as little more than brute and little less than human.
The white race, in its arrogant conceit, constituted the personalities
and the Negro the instrumentalities. Man may be defined as a
distinction-making animal. He is ever prone to set up barriers between
members of his own species and to deny one part of God's human creatures
the inalienable birthright vouchsafed to all alike. But the process was
entirely logical and consistent with the prevailing philosophy.

The anti-slavery struggle stimulated the moral energy of the American
people in a manner that perhaps has never had a parallel in the history
of vicarious endeavor. "One touch of nature makes the whole world kin."
In dealing with fundamental principles of human rights and human wrongs
involved in the issue of slavery, these moral reformers found that the
Negro was a human being, endowed with heart and mind and conscience like
as themselves; albeit these powers of personality had long been
smothered and imbruted by centuries of suppression and harsh usage.
These philanthropists believed in the essential manhood of the Negro.
This belief was the chief dynamic of their endeavor. Upon this
foundation they not only broke the Negro's chain, but clothed him with
political and civic prerogative as an American citizen. They established
schools and colleges and universities for him because they believed in
his higher susceptibilities. To-day we are almost astounded at the
audacity of their faith. They projected a scheme of education comparable
with the standards set up for the choicest European youth for a race
which had hitherto been submerged below the zero point of intelligence.
These schools and colleges founded and fostered on this basis were the
beginnings of the best that there is in the race and the highest which
it can hope to be.

But, alas, as the passion engendered by the war grew weaker and weaker,
the corresponding belief in the Negro has also declined, and the old
dogma concerning his mission as a human tool has begun to reassert
itself. In certain sections the white race has always claimed that the
Negro should not be encouraged in the development of personality. The
denial of the designation "mister" is suggestive of this disposition.
With them the term "mister" is made to mean a direct designation of
personality. There is no objection to such titles as "doctor,"
"reverend" or "professor," as these connote professional rather than
personal quality.

Our whole educational activities are under the thrall of this retrograde
spirit. We are marking time rather than moving forward. The work is
being carried on rather than up. Our bepuzzled pedagogues are seriously
reflecting over the query, _Cui bono?_--Is it worth while? Few, indeed,
are left who have the intensity of belief and the intrepidity of spirit
to defend the higher pretentions of the Negro without apology or
equivocation. The old form of appeal has become insipid and uninspiring;
the ear has become dull to its dinging. The old blade has become blunt
and needs a new sharpness of point and keenness of edge. Where now is
heard the tocsin call whose key-note a generation ago resounded from the
highlands of Kentucky and Tennessee to the plains of the Carolinas
calling the black youths, whose hopes ran high within their bosoms, to
rise and make for higher things? This clarion note, though still for the
nonce, shall not become a lost chord. Its inspiring tones must again
appeal to the youth to arise to their higher assertion and exertion. If
you wish to reach and inspire the life of the people, the approach must
be made not to the intellectual, nor yet to the feelings, as the final
basis of appeal, but to the manhood that lies back of these. That
education of youth, especially the suppressed class, that does not make
insistent and incessant appeals to the smothered manhood (I had almost
said godhood) within, will prove to be but vanity and vexation of
spirit. What boots a few chapters in Chemistry, or pages in History, or
paragraphs in Philosophy, unless they result in an enlarged appreciation
of one's own manhood? Those who are to stand in the high places of
intellectual, moral, and spiritual leadership of such a people in such a
time as this must be made to feel deep down in their own souls their own
essential manhood. They must believe that they are created in the image
of God and that nothing clothed in human guise is a more faithful
likeness of the original. This must be the dominant note in the
education of the Negro. If the note itself is not new, there must at
least be a newness of emphasis and insistence. The Negro must learn in
school what the white boy absorbs from association and environment. The
American white man in his ordinary state is supremely conscious of his
manhood prerogative. He may be ignorant or poor or vicious; yet he never
forgets that he is a man. But every feature of our civilization is
calculated to impress upon the Negro a sense of his inferiority and to
make him feel and believe that he is good for nothing but to be cast out
and trodden under foot of other men. A race, like an individual, that
compromises its own self-respect, paralyzes and enfeebles its own
energies. The motto which should be engraved upon the conscience of
every American Negro is that which Milton places in the mouth of His
Satanic Majesty: "The mind is its own place and of itself can make a
heaven of hell; a hell of heaven." To inculcate this principle is the
highest mission of the higher education. The old theologians used to
insist upon the freedom of the will, but the demand of the Negro to-day
is for the freedom and independence of his own spirit. Destroy this and
all is lost; preserve it, and though political rights, civil privileges,
industrial opportunities be taken away for the time, they will all be

By the development of manhood on the part of the Negro nothing is
farther from my thought than the inculcation of that pugnacious, defiant
disposition which vents itself in wild ejaculations and impotent
screaming against the evils of society. I mean the full appreciation of
essential human qualities and claims, and the firm, unyielding
determination to press forward to the mark of this calling, and not to
be swerved from its pursuit by doubt, denial, danger, rebuff, ridicule,
insult, and contemptuous treatment. While the Negro may not have it
within his power to resist or overcome these things, he must preserve
the integrity of his own soul.

The higher education of the Negro up to this point has been very largely
under the direction and control of philanthropy. The support has come
almost wholly from that source. The development of this sense of manhood
should be the highest concern of a wise, discriminating philanthropy,
for if this is once developed the Negro will be able to handle his own
situation and relieve his philanthropic friends from further
consideration or concern; but, if he fails to develop this spirit of
manhood, he will be but a drag upon the resources of philanthropy for
all times to come.

The Negro must develop courage and self-confidence. A grasp upon the
principles of knowledge gives the possessor the requisite spirit of
confidence. To the timid, the world is full of mystery manipulated and
controlled by forces and powers beyond their ken to comprehend. But
knowledge convinces us that there is no mystery in civilization. The
railroad, the steamship, and the practical projects that loom so large
to the unreflecting, are but the result of the application of thought to
things. The mechanical powers and forces of Nature are open secrets for
all who will undertake to unravel the mystery. And so it is with
essential and moral principles. The one who will have himself rooted and
grounded in the fundamental principles of things can look with
complacence upon the panorama of the world's progress. The Negro should
plant one foot on the Ten Commandments and the other on the Binomial
Theorem: he can then stand steadfast and immovable, however the rain of
racial wrath may fall or the angry winds of prejudice may blow and beat
upon him.

The educated Negro must learn to state his own case and to plead his own
cause before the bar of public opinion. No people who raise up from out
their midst a cultivated class, who can plead their own cause and state
their own case, will fail of a hearing before the just judgment of

The educated Negro to-day represents the first generation grown to the
fullness of the stature of manhood under the influence and power of
education. They are the first ripened fruit of philanthropy, and by them
alone will the wisdom or folly of that philanthropy be justified. The
hope of the race is focused in them. They are the headlight to direct
the pathway through the dangers and vicissitudes of the wilderness. For
want of vision, the people perish; for want of wise direction, they
stumble and fall. There is no body of men in the world to-day, nor in
the history of the world, who have, or ever have had, greater
responsibilities or more coveted opportunities than devolves upon the
educated Negro to-day. It is, indeed, a privilege to be a Negro of light
and leading in such a time as this. The incidental embarrassments and
disadvantages which for the time being must be endured are not to be
compared with the far more exceeding weight of privileges and glory
which awaits him if he rises to these high demands. For such a privilege
well may he forego the pleasure of civilization for a season.

His world consists of 10,000,000 souls, who have wrapped up in them all
the needs and necessities, powers and possibilities, of human nature;
they contain all the norms of civilization, from its roots to its
florescence. His is the task to develop and vitalize these smothered
faculties and potentialities. His education will prove to be but vanity
and vexation of spirit, unless it ultimates in this task. He is the salt
of the earth, and if the salt lose its savor, wherewith shall it be
salted? If the light within the racial world be darkness, how great is
that darkness?

The highest call of the civilization of the world to-day is to the
educated young men of the belated races. The educated young manhood of
Japan, China, India, Egypt, and Turkey must lift their own people up to
the level of their own high conception. They must partake of the best
things in the civilization of Europe and show them unto their own
people. The task of the educated American Negro is the same as theirs,
intensified, perhaps, by the more difficult and intricate tangle of
circumstances and conditions with which he has to deal.

He cannot afford to sink into slothful satisfaction and enjoy a
tasteless leisure or with inane self-deception hide his head under the
shadows of his wings, like the foolish bird, which thereby hopes to
escape the wrath to come. The white race, through philanthropy, has done
much; but its vicarious task culminated when it developed the first
generation of educated men and women. They must do the rest.

These philanthropists spoke for us when our tongues were tied. They
pleaded our cause when we were speechless; but now our faculties have
been unloosed. We must stand upon our own footing. In buffeting the
tempestuous torrents of the world we must either swim on the surface or
sink out of sight. The greatest gratitude that the beneficiary can show
to the benefactor is, as soon as possible, to do without his
benefaction. The task of race statesmanship and reclamation devolves
upon the educated Negro of this day and generation. Moral energy must be
brought to bear upon the task, whether the Negro be engaged in the
production of wealth or in the more recondite pursuits which minister to
the higher needs of man.

The white race is fast losing faith in the Negro as an efficient and
suitable factor in the equation of our civilization. Curtailment of
political, civil, and religious privilege and opportunity is but the
outward expression of this apostasy. As the white man's faith decreases,
our belief in ourselves must increase. Every Negro in America should
utter this prayer, with his face turned toward the light: "Lord, I
believe in my own inherent manhood; help Thou my unbelief." The educated
Negro must express his manhood in terms of courage, in the active as
well as in the passive voice: courage to do, as well as to endure;
courage to contend for the right while suffering wrong; the courage of
self-belief that is always commensurate with the imposed task. The world
believes in a race that believes in itself; but justly despises the
self-bemeaned. Such is the mark and the high calling to which the
educated Negro of to-day is called. May he rise to the high level of it.
Never was there a field whiter unto harvest; never was there louder cry
for laborers in the vineyard of the Lord.



_Editor Southwestern Christian Advocate, New Orleans, La._

[Note 49: Extracts from Commencement address delivered at Tuskegee
Institute, May 29, 1913.]

I have a story to relate, and at once I want to present to you my
hero,--a hero more inspiring than Achilles of the "Iliad," or Odysseus
of the "Odyssey," or Æneas of the "Æneid."

My hero is not a myth, not a creation of literature, not a tradition,
but not unlike the Grecian hero in that he sprung from the union of a
god and a mortal. My hero is not reckoned among the high and mighty nor
will his name ever be carved on stone or raised on bronze. Neither has
my hero accomplished startling feats. As a hero he may be a paradox.
Inconspicuous, humble in station, modest, hid far away from the
maddening, jealous, curious, bickering, taunting, striving, restless
crowd of life. Too long already I have held him from you. His name? I do
not know. His birthplace? I do not know. His age? I do not know. Is he
living now? Here my ignorance is painful. I do not know. My hero,
however, is an actual man of flesh and blood. I met him but twice in
life, but was so charmed I did not ask his name. His personality
thrilled and he in a measure has become my patron saint. He is not a
hero of large and commanding stature, but a cripple--doubly so. His arms
were palsied and turned in so that he could not use a crutch, his lower
limbs turned in also. He sat in an ordinary cane-bottomed chair and
could easily move himself about by throwing the weight of his body from
one back leg of the chair to the other, lifting the front legs at the
same time. I saw him along the train side at Spartanburg, S. C.

A beggar? No, my young friends, beggars are seldom heroes. He was a
merchant prince. He carried his goods around his neck and shoulders and
in his outer coat pockets. He was selling shoe-strings and pencils. If
you gave him a dime he would insist on your taking one or both of the
articles he had for sale. In his activities he was a fine lesson of the
first requirement of life. He was self-sustaining. By the sweat of his
brow he earned his bread.

Did he complain of his lot? Not a bit of it. His handicap he did not
make nor could undo. He therefore accepted his condition
philosophically; he was self-respecting. He knew his limitations; he
knew what he could do and what he could not do; he was self-knowing.
Knowing his handicap and that it was quite unlike any other man's and
that he needed a means of locomotion, he found it; he had, therefore,
initiative. He leaned not upon the strength of others, but used his own
resources; he was therefore self-reliant. He did not wait for business
to come to him, he put himself in the path of business; he was a
hustler. He saw life through a cheerful lens and kept a stout heart; he
was optimistic. He recognized his own personality apart from the
personalities of the crowded throng through which he passed; he was a
self-contented individual. He had but one life to live and he was making
the most of life. When I left him I crowned him, honored him, and I love
him for his worth as a true man.

    "I like a man who faces what he must,
    With step triumphant and a heart of cheer;
    Who fights the daily battles without fear;
    Nor loses faith in man; but does his best,
    Nor ever murmurs at his humble lot,
    But, with a smile, and words of hope, gives zest
    To every toiler; he alone is great
    Who by a life heroic conquers fate."

When once away from my hero, as I thought of him in my deepest soul, I

"Thou art my chastiser and my inspirator. Thou art simple yet great;
untaught thyself, thou art the teacher of all. Henceforth thou shalt be
my hero and guide. Doubting myself, bemoaning my limitations, depressed
by my failure, ashamed of my achievements, my seeing you has given me a
new interpretation of life. I own you my friend, my life's inspiration
and hero."

There is my hero. You ask his color? What difference does it make? Men
have often refused to recognize worth because of color. But to satisfy
you I will tell you. He is a Negro. Give a seat of honor to my hero.
Gather inspiration and learn from him the lessons of life, if you will.
Here is an individual doubly afflicted, without a word of complaint, or
a fret or whine, depending upon his own initiative and resources, making
the most of life under the circumstances which surround him.

Upon the basis of what has been said, in closing this address to the
graduating Class of 1913 of the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute
I desire to offer a personal word:

In the first place, you will know a year from now, more than you can
realize at this present moment, that this is a commencement. This is not
the climax of your life. It is but the beginning, and however
paradoxical it may seem, you are not at the top of the ladder, you are
at the foot. We are here to applaud you to-day not so much on what you
have already accomplished as to give you a send-off for the strenuous
tasks that lie before you. To be frank with you, young men and young
women, the life in earnest that awaits you without will tax every bit of
your strength. Your moral strength will be drawn upon, as well as your
intellectual resources.

Secondly; had I my way I would have each of you burn your diploma and
never refer to it as an indication of what you are and what you know. Do
not attempt to pass through the world on your diploma or your class
standing. The world cares little for these. I would urge that you prove
to the world what you are by what you can do--that you let your
achievements point to your diploma.

Thirdly; you go forth to-day as a representative of this institution,
mantled with all the sacred honors, prestige, and commendation that this
institution, State, and your admirers can bestow. See to it that you
keep the honors of this hour unsoiled and that you disgrace not the
noble history of your alma mater.

Fourthly; I do not believe that this institution is fostered with the
idea that the few students who gather here from time to time only shall
be reached. I rather suspect that the dollars that come from the State
and generous friends come with the hope that as you have been helped and
lifted to culture and refinement, you in turn will carry culture to
those who may never be permitted to stay in these walls. You are to
carry light into dark places and unto those who sit in darkness. By your
arm of strength you are to lift the poor who are beneath you. And then
your education comes not for self-culture, not for self-enjoyment, not
for self-use, but for the betterment of those who are about you.

Fifthly; you go forth as the embodiment of a new generation. You stand
to-day upon the foundation built by those who have gone before you. They
have wrought well. By their toil and suffering you are blest. You are to
carry your generation one notch higher and thus help the onward march of
the world's progress. Be thou faithful. Lift your eyes heavenward and
aspire to do the best and be the noblest according to God's heritage to
you. There are no chosen depths, no prescribed heights to which you may

    "Honor and shame from no condition rise,
    Act well your part, there all the honor lies."

Make the most of life!



[Note 50: An address delivered upon the invitation of the citizens
of Brownsville, Pa., on the occasion of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the
Emancipation Proclamation and also to celebrate the event of Decoration
Day, May 30, 1913.]

_Mr. Chairman, Members of the Celebration Committee, Ladies and

We are not here to-day in the capacity of the priest performing the
funeral rights over the graves of the dead; neither are we here simply
to offer tribute to their memory, by the time-honored custom of
decorating their graves with the faded tokens of a nation's love and
gratitude; but we are here, ladies and gentlemen, to cheer the hearts of
the living--not by an optimism impossible of realization--but by a
candid and truthful report of the conduct of that legacy of freedom,
which came to us fifty years ago, through the sacrifice and death of the
patriots, living and dead, whose memories are honored to-day all over
this broad land of ours.

The civilized world will watch for the newspaper reports of to-morrow to
learn the sentiments of the American people uttered to-day upon many of
the burning issues before the Congress of the United States, relating to
our domestic and foreign policies. The opportunities, which this day
gives, will be seized by national orators to record their convictions
upon matters of morality, politics, and diplomacy. Japan will listen
with keen, diplomatic interest to every utterance, official or
unofficial, touching the vexing problems involved in the so-called
"Yellow Peril" and in the Anti-Alien Land legislation, which, like
Segregation and the Jimcrowism of the South, have been enacted into laws
discriminating against citizens, not aliens, but citizens of the United
States of America, such as we are.

Many to-day believe that the gravity of these international matters will
force the Decoration Day orators to ignore the Negro question, which, in
some form or other, has been the livest question in American politics
for nearly three centuries. In this belief I think they will be
disappointed, for no question before the American people to-day, whether
national or international, can overshadow the Negro question in America,
and no day as historic as this would be complete in its observance
without some reference to it.

We, therefore, gladly welcome the Japanese, or any other members of the
colored race in the earth, to come and share with us that notoriety
which our presence begets in this country, for no other people on the
face of the globe, so far as the United States is concerned, will be
able to dispossess us from the limelight of public discussion. We have
not only helped, but we have made history in this country. We are
wrapped up in the history of the United States of America, despite the
attempt in certain quarters to deny us a respectful place therein. There
is not a single page, from the period of its colonial existence to its
present standard of greatness and renown, from which we are absent. From
the landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock to the advent of the
Cavaliers at Jamestown; from the stirring periods of the Revolution,
which resulted in the emancipation of the colonists from British
imperialism, to the Rebellion in 1860--resulting in the salvation of the
Federal Union--we have ever and always been a potent factor in the
history of this country.

Our presence here has made this day possible. There would have been no
Decoration Day had the American kidnappers left us in Africa--our
fatherland. The world must, therefore, hear from us upon these special
occasions. So, like other elements of the population, we come to-day to
make our annual report. We come, in company with the others, to review
the past, to study the present, and, if possible, to forecast the
future. In measuring the progress of any successful commercial
enterprise, the mode of procedure is to compare beginnings with
balance-sheets. Commercially speaking, it is to take an inventory. What,
therefore, is true of any commercial enterprise is equally true of races
and individuals. The _modus operandi_ is the same. In fact, we proceed
by comparing beginnings with beginnings; environments with environments,
and the advantages and disadvantages of the past and present. This is
the mode by which the progress of a race or the attainments of an
individual must be measured, and the Negro race offers no exception to
this rule.

It was Wendell Phillips, one of America's greatest statesmen, jurists,
and orators, who said in that marvellous lecture on Toussaint
L'Ouverture--beyond doubt the greatest military genius of the nineteenth
century--that there are two ways by which Anglo-Saxon civilization
measures races. First, by the great men produced by that race; secondly,
by the average merit of the mass of that race. In support of the first
he bravely summoned to his presence, from the regions of the dead, the
immortal Bacon, Shakespeare, Hampden, Hancock, Washington, and Franklin,
offering them as stars, who, in their day, had lent lustre in the galaxy
of history. And with equal pride he gloried in the average merit of
Anglo-Saxon blood, since it first streamed from its German home, in
support of the contention of the second way.

As a race, we shall offer no objection to this principle of judgment. In
fact, we cannot even if we so desired. We shall, therefore, accept it
without any reluctance. We think it is a good principle upon which to
base a judgment. The only consideration we demand, in connection with
it, is that the white American, in his judgment of the Afro-American,
shall strictly observe the rule which the race he represents has set for
itself; that is to say, let him measure our race by the great and useful
men it has produced, since the immortal Abraham Lincoln issued that
Proclamation, whose fiftieth anniversary we celebrate to-day, giving
freedom to four and one-half millions of human beings. Let him measure
us by the average merit of Afro-American blood, since it first streamed
from the land of the Pharaohs, whose wills were inscribed in
hieroglyphics--long before Ph[oe]nicia invented the alphabet; long
before the conquest of Alexander the Great had enabled Eratosthenes and
Appollodorus to construct their synchrony of Egyptian antiquity; long
before the construction of the Pyramids (those silent but eloquent
tributes to the grandeur and majesty of the African intellect) had
proclaimed the immortality of the soul.

Our record in this country, Mr. Chairman, must begin with the
Emancipation period. The Emancipation is our birthday. Mankind,
therefore, in measuring our progress, must, in order to be just, make
Emancipation its starting point. Previous to that period we were like
the earth in its primeval condition, as described by Moses, the great
Lawgiver, in the Book of the Generations; namely, that the "Earth was
without form, and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep." So,
too, were we before the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation; we
were without national form; void of civic rights; and moral and
intellectual darkness covered the minds and souls and spirits of the

What was the condition of the race when the Emancipation Proclamation
was first issued, a half century ago? Commercially speaking, what were
the assets of this race? Had it anything to its credit in the
balance-sheets of human progress, save the evils accruing from a long
period of bondage? The facts will prove that it had nothing to its
credit but the virtues of patience and endurance, under trials and
afflictions, the horrors of which will form one of the darkest chapters
in the history of this country.

The twenty Africans, brought by the slave-traders to Jamestown, in 1620,
representing the introduction of African slavery into the United
States, in two hundred and forty-three years had increased to four and
one-half millions of human souls; and it is fair to presume that an
equal, if not a greater number than this, had perished on account of the
rigors of transmission in crossing the Atlantic Ocean and the
indescribable cruelties of the slave system at home.

The Proclamation of Emancipation found these four and one-half millions
of human beings practically homeless, penniless, and friendless, and
absolutely dependent upon the very same people to whom they were in
bondage for two hundred and forty years, and against whom they had taken
up arms in a civil war. The forty acres of land and two mules, which
were promised by the Federal Government, never materialized. That
promise was like the proverbial pie-crust, made to be broken; and the
descendants of these four and a half millions are to-day entitled, by
every humane consideration, to all the benefits and the equities in the
case. The Federal Government at Washington can only purge itself of this
breach of promise by paying the bill, with legal interest; if not,
according to the legal terms of the agreement (forty acres and two
mules), then in its just equivalents, either by pensioning the survivors
of the slave system--many who are to-day in abject squalor and want--or
by a liberal grant of money to the schools of the land charged with the
educational development of their much proscribed posterity.

What of the race's mental condition at the time of its civic birth?
There were scarcely any at that time who could either read or write
with any degree of proficiency. Not because they were incapable of
learning; not because of any mental inferiority; but because of the
cruel and unjust law prohibiting their education and making it a
criminal offense, not only for the Negro himself, but for any white man
who should undertake to instruct him. Punishment was so severe along
this line that the very sight of a book awed him into fear and fright.
The very existence of such a law was, indeed, an admission of the
educational possibilities of the race. In the year 1863 there were about
twenty members of the race who had received collegiate training.
Mathematically speaking, it took three hundred years to pull twenty
Negroes through the colleges of the land, so great was the combination
against our mental development.

What was our status in the business pursuits and gainful occupations at
that time? The year 1863 is as far back as we desire to go for this
enquiry, when the entire race, with but a few exceptions, were servants,
restricted to menial employment and plantation occupations.

What was the moral status of the race at that period? Here there are two
sides involved in any answer which might be given to this question. The
evidences of unlawful miscegenation present themselves to every traveler
throughout this country, and is in itself a pertinent answer to this
query. Our women have had to fight against indescribable odds in order
to preserve their womanhood from the attacks of moral lepers, who, very
often, were their masters and overseers. Yet, in spite of these
well-known facts, we have produced women among us of pure and good
morals, with unimpeachable reputation for virtue and purity. Sometimes
it is a little amusing to hear the white American expatiate on the
immorality of Negro women. They certainly cannot forget their own record
in their dealings with the helpless Negro women of this country. But
here, we will let the curtain of secrecy fall upon such a scene, while
we shall advance to a higher and nobler plane upon this day when nothing
but good feeling must be allowed a place on the programme.

"Watchman, what of the night?" What tidings does the morning bring, if
any? Has the future nothing in store for America's greatest factors in
her industrial and commercial development?

Let us turn from the past; what of the present? In spite of the
dehumanizing and other efforts to destroy the fecundity of the race, the
twenty Africans of 1620, by the close of the Revolution, had increased
to 650,000, and these 650,000, at the close of the Civil War, had
reached the alarming number of four and one-half millions; and these
four and a half millions, had, according to the last Federal Census,
reached the astonishing number of ten millions or more of native-born
citizens--entitled, though sometimes denied, to every right and
privilege granted by the Constitution of the United States and by the
Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments thereof; the making and sustaining
of which our fathers contributed much of their blood and sacrifice, in
peace, as well as in war.

For we have been present, not only as spectators, but as active
participants in every trying crisis in the history of this nation. In
the beginning of the seventeenth century, when labor troubles threatened
the very life of the infant colony and continuing to the founding of the
Republic--when white men were held in peonage or actual bondage for the
uncanceled financial obligations due to the nobility of Great
Britain--who furnished the labor which solved the vexed problem? Who
furnished the brawn and muscle which cleared the forests, leveled the
hills, tunneled the mountains, bridged the rivers, laid the tracks and
cultivated the fields, until this broad land had become as beautiful as
the lily of the valley and as fragrant as the rose of Sharon?

In 1776, when despotism was enthroned and liberty languished in the
streets of Boston, was it not the blood of a Negro--Crispus
Attucks--which animated the sinking spirit of the Goddess, who was
almost ready to die under the oppression of King George and the
despotism of Cornwallis?

In the Sixties--when Lincoln, despairing of the outcome of the Civil
War, on account of the treachery in his own ranks and repeated reverses
on the battle-field, called for 75,000 volunteers to suppress the
Rebellion in the South--who came to the rescue of the Union? In spite of
the effort of McClellan and his company of 50,000 soldiers, who went to
Richmond to prevent "niggers," as they were called, from enlisting, who
came to the rescue of the Union? Whose blood helped to render the
testament of liberty valid? Ask Port Hudson and Milligan's Bend, and
Fort Wagner, and Fort Pillow, and Pittsburg Landing, how the nearly
200,000 Negro soldiers behaved themselves under the fire of the enemy
on these memorable battlefields--rendered sacred by their patriotic

Who saved the Rough Riders and Colonel Roosevelt in the late
Spanish-American War, when San Juan was illuminated with the fire of
Spanish cannonading? Hark! Methinks I hear the tramp of the black boys
of the 24th and the 25th Cavalry, chanting to the strains of martial
music,--"Glory Hallelujah, we are going to have a hot time in the old
town to-night," as they dashed up the dangerous parapet to defend the
honor of their country, and to keep "Old Glory" from trailing in the

At the close of the Civil War we were without homes, lands, or money.
To-day, according to the last census of the United States, we own
600,000 homes, 20,000,000 acres of farm land, covering an area equal to
the political dominions of the kingdoms of Belgium and Holland. We have
under cultivation 40,000,000 acres of farm lands, including those farms
rented by our people and those owned in fee-simple, and worth
$500,000,000. The gross incomes from the farms conducted by Negroes
amount to $250,000,000 annually. We own 10,000 business establishments,
300 drug stores, and 57 banks.

At the close of the Civil War we were without schools, without men of
letters, without men in the various professions and lucrative avocations
of life. To-day, we have 200 universities, colleges, and schools of
lower grade supported by the race. We have 3,000,000 Negro children
attending these schools and the public schools of the land. We have
written 2,000 books. We edit and conduct 200 periodicals and magazines.
In forty years we have contributed, as levies for school purposes,
$45,000,000. With a membership of 4,000,000 we have 35,000 churches,
valued at $56,000,000, and contribute annually $7,500,000 to their
support. We contribute annually $6,000,000 to secret and benevolent
societies. We have about 40,000 teachers, 1,500 lawyers, 2,500 doctors,
20,000 preachers, and 80,000 business men--Marvellous!--Marvellous!

A race that can produce in fifty years, beginning with nothing, such a
report as this, whose minutest detail is supported by official
statistics, needs no pity, Mr. Chairman. A race that can produce a
Douglass, a Langston, a Hood, a Scott, a Turner, a Harvey Johnson, a
Bruce, a Payne, an Arnett, a Revells, a Price, an Elliott, a Montgomery,
a Bowen, a Mason, a Dunbar, a Du Bois, and last but not least, a Booker
T. Washington--the foremost genius of our vocational and industrial
training--asks not for pity. It only asks for an equal opportunity in
the race of life; it asks not for special legislation to accommodate any
necessity; it simply asks for a just application of existing laws to all
citizens alike, without any reference to race or color or previous
condition of servitude. The representatives of this race, in this year
of Our Lord, 1913, ask the American people to judge them upon the record
of their great and useful men and women which the race has produced in
less than a half century--and upon the average merit of the mass of the
race since the Emancipation Proclamation was issued by the immortal

In concluding this brief summary--for at best it can only be regarded as
a brief summary of the doings of the race--and standing on the threshold
of a new era in politics, in commerce, in religion and in ethics--a new
era in the feeling and temper of the white American towards the
Afro-American, I ask you, ladies and gentlemen, what shall be our
conduct in the future? Watchman, what shall be the forecast?

Mr. Chairman, the forecast is bright--brighter than it has ever been in
any previous period of the race's history in this nation--and I make
this statement in the fullest appreciation of the efforts which are
being made all over this land, by adverse legislation, to weed us out of
politics and other public preferments; to push us into a corner to
ourselves, in both Church and State--a propaganda which has brought
gloom to many of our leaders, producing a pessimism inimical to

But why a pessimistic outlook, Mr. Chairman? Is it possible to deprive
ten million native-born American citizens from the enjoyment of their
rights and privileges, guaranteed alike to all by the Constitution of
the United States? I think not. Such a condition, Mr. Chairman, would be
like an established government with no diplomatic representative at
court. No matter what methods are adopted, some of the representative
men of our race, unexpectedly or otherwise, in the final analysis, will
slip in; if not in the Congress of the United States, then in the
legislatures and in the municipal governments of the State--such, for
example, as Lawyer Bass in Philadelphia, Pa.; Councilman Cummings in
Baltimore; Smith in the legislature of Ohio; Fitzgerald in New Jersey,
and Jackson in Illinois. No arrangement, no matter how planned, can
ultimately defeat this logical result which _patience_ alone will

God and Time, ladies and gentlemen, are important factors in the
solution of these questions. Fifty years are not sufficient to determine
the possibilities of a race. No seer who knew the ancestors of the
Anglo-Saxons as Cæsar knew them, would have foretold such a future as
they now enjoy. This Anglo-Saxon race, whose ancestors worshipped the
mistletoe, offered human sacrifices, and drank wine out of human skulls,
have now become the conquerors and the dominant race on the earth. Their
literature is the cream of the human intellect, and their tongue
promises to become the official lingua of the earth. _God and Time_ have
wrought these things for them, and what God and Time have wrought for
one race, _God and Time_ can accomplish for another race--if that race
remain true to itself and to God.

If you ask me for the ground of my optimism, I reply it is based upon
two things, namely, the ability of the race itself to overcome
difficulties and obstacles, and the over-ruling Providence of God, based
upon His justice and His righteousness. It is hardly possible for this
Negro race to experience any greater difficulties and obstacles in the
future than it has already experienced in the past. It has overcome
every obstacle with heroic courage--from slavery to the present period
of its marvellous success. Without discounting the human efforts of the
race, it has accomplished all of this by an heroic faith in God and in
the justice and righteousness of His character as practised by our
ancestors in the days of their bitterest afflictions--when weakness
characterized the arm of flesh. Personally, I believe in God and in His
justice and righteousness, and I have never lost faith in the benevolent
brotherhood of mankind. I believe that "Right, like God is eternal and
unchangeable; and since Right is Right and God is God, Right must
ultimately prevail; though its final triumph may be retarded by the
operation of wicked devices--nevertheless--it must prevail."



_Secretary Church Extension Society, A. M. E. Church_

[Note 51: Delivered at the Celebration of the Emancipation
Proclamation, Philadelphia, September, 1913.]

There is only one safe way to judge the future of the Negro Church, and
that is by its past. And the past of this Church, despite its
shortcomings, is safe.

To the curious it would seem strange that the Negro Church as such
should exist at all. But in the light of its history, covering almost
the entire history of this Government, its existence has been proved a
necessity, as its records abundantly testify.

Until we had the Negro Church we had nothing of which the race could
boast. We early discovered that it was religious rights which first
opened our eyes to all our rights, but until we were secure in the
enjoyment of our religious liberty, we were not fully aroused to the
importance and value of civil liberty. We had not learned that they were
twin blessings often dearly bought, but of inestimable value.

The Negro Church, therefore, became the basis upon which would be reared
the superstructure of all our subsequent achievements. The men who laid
the foundation for the Negro Church, whether of Methodist, or Baptist,
or Episcopalian, or Presbyterian, or of Congregational predilection,
were wise in their day and generation, and paved the way for the best
work of Negro development ever undertaken in this country. Until we had
the Negro Church, we had not the Negro school, and the one was the
natural forerunner and concomitant of the other, opening up avenues for
the preacher, the teacher, the lawyer, the physician, the editor, the
orator, and the spokesman of and for the race.

* * * * *

The Negro Church has passed the experimental stage. It is no longer in a
stage of incubation. It is an actuality,--an active, aggressive, and
progressive reality. It has thoroughly established its rights to
existence and its indispensability as a religious force and influence.
Our religious fervor may at times appear to be unduly emotional and
lacking in solemnity, but even this is pardonable, and we are reminded
that this is an emotional age, and we must not forget that the great
Penticostal awakening, in the early days of Christianity, provoked a
similar criticism from the unaroused and unaffected unbelievers. The
Negro Church of the future may be less emotional, but if the Church is
to survive and throw off a cold formality which threatens to sap its
very life-blood, it must not get away from its time-honored, deep
spirituality, for without the Spirit the seemingly religious body is
dead. Our Church of the future as well as our Church of the present will
take care that no new dogmas of exotic growth will deprive it of those
eternal verities which constitute the fundamentals of our Christian
faith. These verities of our religion have their foundation in the
teachings of our Great Redeemer himself, who is the very embodiment of
all Truth.

The Negro Church of the future will address itself to the correction of
present-day evils in both Church and State. It will emphasize the
teaching that the highest form of virtue is the purest form of love. It
will demand that men and women, and Christian professors especially,
exemplify in their own lives and habits the religion they make bold to
proclaim. It will insist upon the remedying of great wrongs from which
countless numbers suffer,--whether these wrongs be unfair and unjust
discriminations in public places, on the common thoroughfares, in the
courts and halls of justice, in the Congress, the legislature or the
municipal councils,--everywhere the Church will condemn and protest and
fulminate against these injustices, until they melt away with the
certainty of April snow. The Church of the future will more fully
realize that where great principles are involved, concessions are
dangerous and compromises disastrous.

The future will disclose a Negro Church with men in all its pulpits
equal to the great task which the responsibilities thereof impose. They
will be qualified men from every viewpoint--deeply spiritual, well
trained, pious, influential, impressive, strong. They will lead their
people, and be a part of their life, their indomitable spirit, their
ambitions, their achievements. They will be absolutely trusted and
trustworthy. They will be an inspiration to our youth, to our manhood
and our womanhood. They will speak as one having authority and they
will boldly assert their authority to speak. They will take up where the
fathers left off, and they in their possession of so great an
inheritance of religious fervor and unshrinking faith, will arouse
Christianity from its lethargy, and start as a nation of believers,
arousing, as it were, from its spell of years. They will be as bold as
lions, wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. They will win their way
because the things for which they stand and the gospel which they
preach, will deserve to win. They will not seek so much to impress their
own personality, but their cause, and they will lose themselves in the
cause by magnifying the cause.

* * * * *

The Negro Church of the future will take greater interest in the young
people, will give greater attention to the Sunday-school work, to the
young people's societies, to the Young Men's Christian Association, to
the full development of all the departments of all the churches of
whatever denomination, to the end that the churches will be thoroughly
organized for work, and such work as will lead eventually to the
thorough evangelization of the world. The redemption of Africa, one of
the forward movements of the world to-day, must come largely through the
efforts, the service, and the personal sacrifices of our own churches,
our own ministers and teachers, our own men and women. Once fully
aroused to the importance of the obligation we owe to the land of our
forefathers, we will enter upon the task with all the zest and spirit
of David Livingstone, whose one hundredth anniversary we are celebrating
this year, as we are also celebrating the first half century of our
emancipation from human slavery. Livingstone sacrificed himself in the
heart of Africa in order to give life and light to the aborigines of the
Dark Continent. Our Church of the future must take up the task so
grandly undertaken by him, and cease not until the work he so nobly
began finds its full fruitage in Africa's redemption from heathendom,
superstition, and ignorance, that she may take her place among the
civilized and enlightened people of the world.

* * * * *

The Church of the future will have to do with the life of its
membership. It will take heed to its health, and will teach hygiene and
the laws which safeguard one's health in the home, in the Church, in the
public schools and public places, in the open air and where not. It will
impress the lesson of a sound mind in a sound body, and the great need
of a sound body in order to have a sound mind. It will not fear to
declare in favor of pure athletics as a means of developing the physical
system, which is so essential to sound health and a strong manhood. The
boys and young men will be urged to identify themselves with Young Men's
Christian Associations so as to have advantage of the reading-rooms, the
swimming-pools, the gymnasiums, and other young men's society, thus
eschewing the dens of vice and haunts of infamy which might otherwise
attract them and blight their precious young lives for all time, it may
be. It will take knowledge of human life and its means of existence
everywhere. It will seek to know what the man and woman in the alley as
well as those on the broad thoroughfare are doing,--whether they are
oppressed or distressed in body or in mind, and to go to their relief.
It will discover that man _is_ his brother's keeper, and is largely
responsible for him and must seek to take care of him. The Church, yea,
will come to itself and be shorn of a great part of its pride, when it
fully realizes that its real growth and prosperity are dependent upon
the attention it pays to God's poor and God's neglected. Our churches
will re-echo with the sentiment of that song, "God Will Take Care of
You," but there must be a refreshing application of it, knowing that
caretaking reaches further than ourselves and extends to our neglected
brother, whom we, so oftentimes, have forgotten. If the Church is no
stronger than it is to-day it is due chiefly to the neglect of the
unfortunate _many_ who have been unreached and need to be reached.

The Church of the future must humble its pride, buckle on its armor, and
cease not in its labors until this great army of unreached is reached
and helped, and impressed and convinced and saved. "Go ye into all the
world and preach my Gospel," does not mean to distant people merely, but
to people at home as well, many of whom know as little of the Gospel as
many others in distant Africa. There must be, there will be, a religious
awakening along this line, so that if the people do not go to the
Church, then the Church must go to the people, and there will be
thousands, in the next few years in answer to the question, "Who will
go?" who will answer in language which cannot be misunderstood, "Here
am I, send me."

The Church of the future will have to do with the greater problems of
every day life. It will have to aid in teaching the people life and duty
and how best to meet and battle with these. It will have to impress the
importance of home-getting,--whether in city or on farm,--and the
possessing of these in fee simple, by actual purchase, and we will
become more valuable as citizens as we acquire more in our individual
right in real and personal property.

* * * * *

The Church of the future will urge the starting of savings accounts with
the youth, and the organization of savings banks among our people in all
sections, and the opening, incidentally, of opportunities for our boys
and girls to get in close touch with business life and business habits.
We will thus make the Church an influence, as it has been in the past,
in paving the way for the future financial and substantial importance of
the race. The Negro Church of the future will be less fettered by
denominational lines and possessed of a broader Christian spirit,
recognizing denominational names of course, but laying greater stress on
Christianity, than on any church allegiance. Methodists, Baptists, and
Presbyterians, and Congregationalists, and Episcopalians will
interchange pulpits and preach one Gospel in the name of our common
Lord, Who is in all, and through all and over all. There will be
inter-denominational Sunday-school unions, Church conventions and
conferences, and the ministers and congregations will be in closer
union, praying for the same spiritual power, the same common blessings,
and the removal of the same great evils. Judah will not vex Ephraim, and
Ephraim will not vex Judah. Under the mighty influence of this
commingling and oneness of heart and purpose

    "Error will decay and Truth grow strong
    And right shall rule supreme and conquer wrong."

* * * * *

To Thee! God of our fathers, we render praise and thanksgiving for such
abundant evidence of Thy guiding presence during these fifty years of
freedom and civil liberty. We predict for the future on the basis of our
achievement during the past; and since the Negro Church has been a great
factor in lifting us up and enabling us to see the new light, in spite
of many obstacles, we are confident that by following the same
Omnipotent Hand, that never errs and never fails, we will, in the coming
years, prove that no sacrifice, either in war or in peace, made in our
behalf has been made in vain, and no service rendered us has been
without its subsequent reward. We rejoice, and are glad in our gladness
and rich in our wealth. In the midst of it all, the Negro Church
survives and is steadily moving on.



_Of the Baltimore Bar_

[Note 52: An address at the opening of Howard University Law School,
Washington, D. C., Oct. 1st, 1913.]


The legal profession is without doubt in the lead. Its devotees outrank
all others in service to the government and they come the closest in
personal contact to the individual. This is denied of course, and always
will be denied by men of all other professions, but when the roster of
the world's lawyers who have faithfully and efficiently served humanity
in every conceivable way is pitted against that of the others, the
question is relieved of all doubt. The Negro lawyer is no longer an
experiment. He has been severely tried from within and without, and he
has proved his worth. His place in our economy is fixed. He has
demonstrated his capacity to serve, and to serve well, and for all of
this both the lawyer and the race he is helping to advance are under
lasting obligations to Howard University. She has to her credit more men
who are actively and successfully pursuing their calling than any other
institution of learning in this land.

* * * * *

The Negro race is probably to-day in greater need of consecrated lawyers
than it is of pious priests. The time has come for the lawyer to take
his place in the lead. We are celebrating this year the 50th anniversary
of our emancipation, and, paradoxical though it may be, we appear
further from emancipation to-day than when Lincoln signed his
Emancipation Proclamation, or when Lee surrendered at Appomattox. It is
quite true that we have an immensely larger realty-holding to our
credit, that our financial worth is constantly on the increase, that our
illiteracy is rapidly reaching the vanishing-point, and that in all
matters, spiritual as well as temporal, we seem to have improved, but
the closer we approximate the standard of life and living of the
dominant race, all the harder apparently have we to fight to maintain
our self-respect, and preserve the rights and privileges which the
letter of our American law guarantees. When we were slaves and had
nothing except our muscles, there was no thought of separate-car laws.
When we were ignorant and powerless to think coherently, there were no
efforts at our disfranchisement. When we were poverty-stricken and
satisfied if we might live in the alleys of our great American cities,
there was no thought of segregation, whether in the matter of our
residences, or in that of the employees of our much-heralded republican
government. With every increase in accomplishment, or worth, or demand
for the better things of life, comes the burden of wrongs, injustice,
and rash discrimination. It would be idle here to attempt to recount in
detail the grievances we justly have against the government in city,
state and nation; to do so further than the purpose I have in view would
be but to tell you what you full well know. The Negro race needs a
change of viewpoint; another leadership is an absolute necessity, and I
see no reason why men of our profession should not attain it. For years
we have had in the ascendency the prophets of submission and silence,
and we have been taught to declare for peace when we knew there was no
peace. No other element in our great nation, except that of ourselves is
content with things as they are, accepting without protest every new
injustice, in the vain hope that some day would bring about a change for
the better. We have lulled ourselves to sleep with this fatalism, and
what is the result? We have noted the practical nullification of every
act suggested or inspired by the changing conditions in the lives and
property of freedmen brought about by the Civil War. Disfranchisement in
every Southern State is as fixed and determinate, as the indifference of
the Negroes of those sections, or the practises of all political parties
can make it. Separate, and therefore inferior, accommodations on public
conveyances are the rule, and we have endured these conditions so long
that it would appear almost cruel now to undertake, or to ask a change.
We have noted further, and this is the saddest of all, that our
inactivity in claiming our rights, or our indifference about their
recognition, has not only emboldened our enemies, but it has silenced
our friends.

We have seen with increasing alarm the judicial construction of statutes
and the Constitution itself, which all but vitiate and annul the basis
of our citizenship; we have seen repeated attempts made to discredit the
War amendments to the national Constitution, and some have in all
seriousness gone so far even as to question their constitutionality.
Every student of our common law has always been sure of the right to
private property, and the corollaries thereto, but it is just in the
present year that a court of last resort in a neighboring State, in an
interpretation of one of these new conceptions, a segregation ordinance,
declared that while the one under investigation was invalid, that the
municipality enacting it might under its police powers make provision
for the segregation of the races in the matter of their residences,
schools, churches, and places of public assembly. The law is not a fixed
science; it is more properly growth, a development. What is not regarded
as law to-day may, by the inactivity or indifference of those most
deeply concerned, become the law of the next decade. So we behold to-day
our rights and liberties drifting away from us, and that regarded as the
law which years ago we deemed impossible. What are we to do, you say?
What can we do? The lawyers trained here and in other institutions of
learning must answer these questions, and in finding their answers will
be their opportunity. The adjudication of the conflicting interests of
mankind, the interpretation of our statutes and our common law the
determination of rights and privileges of all men, is a judicial
function. What rights we enjoy to-day have come in the final analysis
from the courts. What rights we find ourselves to-day deprived of, and
which we hope to enjoy to-morrow, must come, if at all, from the same
source. The courts have the last word, and it is to that instrument of
government we must appeal, and to that last word we must look for our
safety, or fear our doom. But courts are not self-acting institutions,
and they are not engaged in academic discussions of abstractions. They
are severely serious. It may be that, like so many Americans, we have
lost faith in the courts, and Heaven knows we have had abundant reason
for so doing, but there's hope. They have too often and too long
listened to the clamors of public opinion, put too much faith and credit
in the utterances of latter-day journalism, coloring their opinions to
suit the one, or to escape the criticism of the other. Under the
pernicious doctrine of public policy and in fortifying that undefined
and indefinable legal notion of police power, courts have wiped aside
Constitutional limitations, and disregarded what the profession at least
had learned to consider as almost fixed precedents of the law, but even
with all these defects admitted, there remains the startling truth that
to these governmental agencies we must look for the righting of our
wrongs and the redress of our grievances. We have shunned the courts too
often in our temporal affairs, fearing, it seems, further adverse
decisions, or waiting a proper adjustment at some other forum. In my own
State it might now be compulsory upon you, or any other decent
self-respecting person of the race, in travelling from here to New York
or elsewhere in the North, to ride in the so-called "Jim-Crow" cars
provided by an indulgent Maryland legislature for Negro patrons of its
railroads, had it not have been for a member of the Faculty of this
institution. William H. H. Hart knew that legislation of that character
was an attempt to restrict interstate traffic, and the Court of Appeals
of Maryland agreed with him. The case of State vs. Hart, reported in 100
Md. at page 595, is a landmark in our Maryland law, and under its
influence "Jim-Crow" cars have almost disappeared from the railroads of
our State. Another distinguished member of the Faculty of Howard
University, but of another department, in travelling over the railroads
in the eastern part of our State last fall, discovered that the
compartments provided by the roads for their colored passengers, in
point of cleanliness, appointment, and convenience, were notably
inferior to those furnished others. He complained to the Public Service
Commission and, after a full hearing, the Commission passed a decree
requiring these railroads to furnish accommodations to its colored
passengers equal in all respects to that furnished others. This is
exactly what the Separate-Car Law provides, but it is exactly what the
railroads had never intended to furnish and, without the complaint of
Professor T. W. Turner, no other course would have been followed. Here
are two, and there are numerous other concrete examples of what may be
accomplished by sane and timely appeals to our judicial tribunals. Our
government has three well defined departments separate and distinct,
each operating in a manner as a check on the other, and all together
working for the common good of the whole. We have resorted generally to
the executive and have been satisfied with its appointment of a few men
to office, and with its passive execution of the laws affecting us. In
recent years we have arisen to the point of seeking legislation in the
defense of our civil rights, and it is hoped that as the years pass more
of this will be done. But in the judicial branch of the government is
where, after all, we must place our reliance. We need a body of trained
lawyers in full sympathy with our community life, eager, anxious, and
capable, prepared at any emergency to present our cause fairly and
intelligently before any tribunal; and with this accomplished, I have
faith in the American people that justice will prevail, and right
triumph over every wrong. I do not mean that the lawyer is to seek such
service by the fomenting of litigation; far from it, but let him be
prepared for it by study and devotion to racial ideals, and when the
hour comes he will be called on to marshal its forces and take charge of
the legal contests of a race. This will never be if he dreams only of
his money, if he thinks only of present material gain, if he counts his
successes in terms of houses and lands. He must be willing to serve for
the sake of the service. The failures in our professional life come
almost wholly from those who had no high ideals of their calling, and no
devotion to the interests of their race or country. Country and race in
this matter are synonymous; you can't serve one without at the same time
serving the other. The lawyer who advocates the protection of the
lives, the property, and the civic welfare of ten millions of Americans
of whatever hue, or origin, is not a racial zealot, but a patriot of the
highest character, and his worth in preserving the nation's ideals is
beyond calculation.

Young men, you who are either about to leave these halls for the active
life of the lawyer, or you who are just beginning the pursuit of your
studies here looking to the same end, I bring you, I hope, no
discouraging note. My aim is to do the contrary. The heavy burdens the
race is bearing in the form of unjust laws and practises, in strained
constructions of statutes, constitutions, and the common law; in the
thousand ways which the ingenuity of the prejudiced find to bar us from
the full enjoyment of American liberty and freedom, these will some day,
along with those of us who are now at the bar, furnish your greatest
opportunity. Your duty then, as now, will be to fortify yourselves with
all the learning which this institution provides, with all that the
libraries in your reach contain, with all that close and intimate
association with others of your profession will secure, with sincere
devotion to the ideals and traditions of our noble profession, and with
no less devotion to the interest of your clients, and a determination
faithfully and loyally and efficiently to serve your race, your nation
and your God.



_Editor and Founder "The Crisis"_

[Note 53: From the New York _Outlook_.]

The responsibility for their own social regeneration ought to be placed
largely upon the shoulders of the Negro people. But such responsibility
must carry with it a grant of power; responsibility without power is a
mockery and a farce. If, therefore, the American people are sincerely
anxious that the Negro shall put forth his best efforts to help himself,
they must see to it that he is not deprived of the freedom and power to
strive. The responsibility for dispelling their own ignorance implies
that the power to overcome ignorance is to be placed in black men's
hands; the lessening of poverty calls for the power of effective work;
and the responsibility for lessening crime calls for control over social
forces which produce crime.

Such social power means, assuredly, the growth of initiative among
Negroes, the spread of independent thought, the expanding consciousness
of manhood; and these things to-day are looked upon by many with
apprehension and distrust. Men openly declare their design to train
these millions as a subject caste, as men to be thought for, but not to
think; to be led, but not to lead themselves.

Those who advocate these things forget that such a solution flings them
squarely on the other horn of the dilemma: such a subject child-race
could never be held accountable for its own misdeeds and shortcomings;
its ignorance would be part of the nation's design, its poverty would
arise partly from the direct oppression of the strong and partly from
thriftlessness which such oppression breeds; and, above all, its crime
would be the legitimate child of that lack of self-respect which caste
systems engender. Such a solution of the Negro problem is not one which
the saner sense of the nation for a moment contemplates; it is utterly
foreign to American institutions, and is unthinkable as a future for any
self-respecting race of men. The sound afterthought of the American
people must come to realize that the responsibility for dispelling
ignorance and poverty, and uprooting crime among Negroes cannot be put
upon their own shoulders unless they are given such independent
leadership in intelligence, skill, and morality as will inevitably lead
to an independent manhood which cannot and will not rest in bonds.

Let me illustrate my meaning particularly in the matter of educating
Negro youth.

The Negro problem, it has often been said, is largely a problem of
ignorance--not simply of illiteracy, but a deeper ignorance of the world
and its ways, of the thought and experience of men; an ignorance of self
and the possibilities of human souls. This can be gotten rid of only by
training; and primarily such training must take the form of that sort of
social leadership which we call education. To apply such leadership to
themselves and to profit by it, means that Negroes would have among
themselves men of careful training and broad culture, as teachers and
teachers of teachers. There are always periods of educational evolution
when it is deemed quite proper for pupils in the fourth reader to teach
those in the third. But such a method, wasteful and ineffective at all
times, is peculiarly dangerous when ignorance is widespread and when
there are few homes and public institutions to supplement the work of
the school. It is, therefore, of crying necessity among Negroes that the
heads of their educational system--the teachers in the normal schools,
the heads of high schools, the principals of public systems, should be
unusually well trained men; men trained not simply in common-school
branches, not simply in the technique of school management and normal
methods, but trained beyond this, broadly and carefully, into the
meaning of the age whose civilization it is their peculiar duty to
interpret to the youth of a new race, to the minds of untrained people.
Such educational leaders should be prepared by long and rigorous courses
of study similar to those which the world over have been designed to
strengthen the intellectual powers, fortify character, and facilitate
the transmission from age to age of the stores of the world's knowledge.

Not all men--indeed, not the majority of men, only the exceptional few
among American Negroes or among any other people--are adapted to this
higher training, as, indeed, only the exceptional few are adapted to
higher training in any line; but the significance of such men is not to
be measured by their numbers, but rather by the numbers of their pupils
and followers who are destined to see the world through their eyes, hear
it through their trained ears, and speak to it through the music of
their words.

Such men, teachers of teachers and leaders of the untaught, Atlanta
University and similar colleges seek to train. We seek to do our work
thoroughly and carefully. We have no predilections or prejudices as to
particular studies or methods, but we do cling to those time-honored
sorts of discipline which the experience of the world has long since
proven to be of especial value. We sift as carefully as possible the
student material which offers itself, and we try by every conscientious
method to give to students who have character and ability such years of
discipline as shall make them stronger, keener, and better for their
peculiar mission. The history of civilization seems to prove that no
group or nation which seeks advancement and true development can despise
or neglect the power of well-trained minds; and this power of
intellectual leadership must be given to the talented tenth among
American Negroes before this race can seriously be asked to assume the
responsibility of dispelling its own ignorance. Upon the
foundation-stone of a few well-equipped Negro colleges of high and
honest standards can be built a proper system of free common schools in
the South for the masses of the Negro people; any attempt to found a
system of public schools on anything less than this--on narrow ideals,
limited or merely technical training--is to call blind leaders for the

The very first step toward the settlement of the Negro problem is the
spread of intelligence. The first step toward wider intelligence is a
free public-school system; and the first and most important step toward
a public-school system is the equipment and adequate support of a
sufficient number of Negro colleges. These are first steps, and they
involve great movements: first, the best of the existent colleges must
not be abandoned to slow atrophy and death, as the tendency is to-day;
secondly, systematic attempt must be made to organize secondary
education. Below the colleges and connected with them must come the
normal and high schools, judiciously distributed and carefully manned.
In no essential particular should this system of common and secondary
schools differ from educational systems the world over. Their chief
function is the quickening and training of human intelligence; they can
do much in the teaching of morals and manners incidentally, but they
cannot and ought not to replace the home as the chief moral teacher;
they can teach valuable lessons as to the meaning of work in the world,
but they cannot replace technical schools and apprenticeship in actual
life, which are the real schools of work. Manual training can and ought
to be used in these schools, but as a means and not as an end--to
quicken intelligence and self-knowledge and not to teach carpentry; just
as arithmetic is used to train minds and not skilled accountants.

Whence, now, is the money coming for this educational system? For the
common schools the support should come from local communities, the State
governments, and the United States Government; for secondary education,
support should come from local and State governments and private
philanthropy; for the colleges, from private philanthropy and the United
States Government. I make no apology for bringing the United States
Government in thus conspicuously. The General Government must give aid
to Southern education if illiteracy and ignorance are to cease
threatening the very foundations of civilization within any reasonable
time. Aid to common school education could be appropriated to the
different States on the basis of illiteracy. The fund could be
administered by State officials, and the results and needs reported upon
by United States educational inspectors under the Bureau of Education.
The States could easily distribute the funds so as to encourage local
taxation and enterprise and not result in pauperizing the communities.
As to higher training, it must be remembered that the cost of a single
battle-ship like the Massachusetts would endow all the distinctively
college work necessary for Negroes during the next half-century; and it
is without doubt true that the unpaid balance from bounties withheld
from Negroes in the Civil War would, with interest, easily supply this

But spread of intelligence alone will not solve the Negro problem. If
this problem is largely a question of ignorance, it is also scarcely
less a problem of poverty. If Negroes are to assume the responsibility
of raising the standards of living among themselves, the power of
intelligent work and leadership toward proper industrial ideals must be
placed in their hands. Economic efficiency depends on intelligence,
skill and thrift. The public school system is designed to furnish the
necessary intelligence for the ordinary worker, the secondary school for
the more gifted workers, and the college for the exceptional few.
Technical knowledge and manual dexterity in learning branches of the
world's work are taught by industrial and trade schools, and such
schools are of prime importance in the training of colored children.
Trade-teaching can not be effectively combined with the work of the
common schools because the primary curriculum is already too crowded,
and thorough common-school training should precede trade-teaching. It
is, however, quite possible to combine some of the work of the secondary
schools with purely technical training, the necessary limitations being
matters of time and cost: _e. g._, the question whether the boy can
afford to stay in school long enough to add parts of a high-school
course to the trade course, and particularly the question whether the
school can afford or ought to afford to give trade training to
high-school students who do not intend to become artisans. A system of
trade-schools, therefore, supported by State and private aid, should be
added to the secondary school system.

An industrial school, however, does not merely teach technique. It is
also a school--a center of moral influence and of mental discipline. As
such it has peculiar problems in securing the proper teaching force. It
demands broadly trained men: the teacher of carpentry must be more than
a carpenter, and the teacher of the domestic arts more than a cook; for
such teachers must instruct, not simply in manual dexterity, but in
mental quickness and moral habits. In other words, they must be teachers
as well as artisans. It thus happens that college-bred men and men from
other higher schools have always been in demand in technical schools. If
the college graduates were to-day withdrawn from the teaching force of
the chief Negro industrial schools, nearly every one of them would have
to close its doors. These facts are forgotten by such advocates of
industrial training as oppose the higher schools. Strong as the argument
for industrial schools is--and its strength is undeniable--its cogency
simply increases the urgency of the plea for higher training-schools and
colleges to furnish broadly educated teachers.

But intelligence and skill alone will not solve the Southern problem of
poverty. With these must go that combination of homely habits and
virtues which we may loosely call thrift. Something of thrift may be
taught in school, more must be taught at home; but both these agencies
are helpless when organized economic society denies to workers the just
rewards of thrift and efficiency. And this has been true of black
laborers in the South from the time of slavery down through the scandal
of the Freedmen's Bank to the peonage and crop-lien system of to-day. If
the Southern Negro is shiftless, it is primarily because over large
areas a shiftless Negro can get on in the world about as well as an
industrious black man. This is not universally true in the South, but it
is true to so large an extent as to discourage striving in precisely
that class of Negroes who most need encouragement. What is the remedy?
Intelligence--not simply the ability to read and write or to sew--but
the intelligence of a society permeated by that larger vision of life
and broader tolerance which are fostered by the college and university.
Not that all men must be college-bred, but that some men, black and
white, must be, to leaven the ideals of the lump. Can any serious
student of the economic South doubt that this to-day is her crying need?

Ignorance and poverty are the vastest of the Negro problems. But to
these later years have added a third--the problem of Negro crime. That a
great problem of social morality must have become eventually the central
problem of emancipation is as clear as day to any student of history. In
its grosser form as a problem of serious crime it is already upon us. Of
course it is false and silly to represent that white women in the South
are in daily danger of black assaulters. On the contrary, white
womanhood in the South is absolutely safe in the hands of ninety-five
per cent. of the black men--ten times safer than black womanhood is in
the hands of white men. Nevertheless, there is a large and dangerous
class of Negro criminals, paupers, and outcasts. The existence and
growth of such a class far from causing surprise, should be recognized
as the natural result of that social disease called the Negro problem;
nearly every untoward circumstance known to human experience has united
to increase Negro crime: the slavery of the past, the sudden
emancipation, the narrowing of economic opportunity, the lawless
environment of wide regions, the stifling of natural ambition, the
curtailment of political privilege, the disregard of the sanctity of
black men's homes, and, above all, a system of treatment for criminals
calculated to breed crime far faster than all other available agencies
could repress it. Such a combination of circumstances is as sure to
increase the numbers of the vicious and outcast as the rain is to wet
the earth. The phenomenon calls for no delicately drawn theories of race
differences; it is a plain case of cause and effect.

But plain as the causes may be, the results are just as deplorable, and
repeatedly to-day the criticism is made that Negroes do not recognize
sufficiently their responsibility in this matter. Such critics forget
how little power to-day Negroes have over their own lower classes.
Before the black murderer who strikes his victim to-day, the average
black man stands far more helpless than the average white, and, too,
suffers ten times more from the effects of the deed. The white man has
political power, accumulated wealth, and knowledge of social forces; the
black man is practically disfranchised, poor, and unable to discriminate
between the criminal and the martyr. The Negro needs the defense of the
ballot, the conserving power of property, and, above all, the ability to
cope intelligently with such vast questions of social regeneration and
moral reform as confront him. If social reform among Negroes be without
organization or trained leadership from within, if the administration of
law is always for the avenging of the white victim and seldom for the
reformation of the black criminal, if ignorant black men misunderstand
the functions of government because they have had no decent
instruction, and intelligent black men are denied a voice in government
because they are black--under such circumstances to hold Negroes
responsible for the suppression of crime among themselves is the
cruelest of mockeries.

On the other hand, a sincere desire among the American people to help
the Negroes undertake their own social regeneration means, first, that
the Negro be given the ballot on the same terms as other men, to protect
him against injustice and to safeguard his interests in the
administration of law; secondly, that through education and social
organization he be trained to work, and save, and earn a decent living.
But these are not all: wealth is not the only thing worth accumulating;
experience and knowledge can be accumulated and handed down, and no
people can be truly rich without them. Can the Negro do without these?
Can this training in work and thrift be truly effective without the
guidance of trained intelligence and deep knowledge--without that same
efficiency which has enabled modern peoples to grapple so successfully
with the problems of the Submerged Tenth? There must surely be among
Negro leaders the philanthropic impulse, the uprightness of character
and strength of purpose, but there must be more than these; philanthropy
and purpose among blacks as well as among whites must be guided and
curbed by knowledge and mental discipline--knowledge of the forces of
civilization that make for survival, ability to organize and guide those
forces, and realization of the true meaning of those broader ideals of
human betterment which may in time bring heaven and earth a little
nearer. This is social power--it is gotten in many ways by experience,
by social contact, by what we loosely call the chances of life. But the
systematic method of acquiring and imparting it is by the training of
youth to thought, power, and knowledge in the school and college. And
that group of people whose mental grasp is by heredity weakest, and
whose knowledge of the past is for historic reasons most imperfect, that
group is the very one which needs above all, for the talented of its
youth, this severe and careful course of training; especially if they
are expected to take immediate part in modern competitive life, if they
are to hasten the slower courses of human development, and if the
responsibility for this is to be in their own hands.

Three things American slavery gave the Negro--the habit of work, the
English language, and the Christian religion; but one priceless thing it
debauched, destroyed, and took from him, and that was the organized
home. For the sake of intelligence and thrift, for the sake of work and
morality, this home-life must be restored and regenerated with newer
ideals. How? The normal method would be by actual contact with a higher
home-life among his neighbors, but this method the social separation of
white and black precludes. A proposed method is by schools of domestic
arts, but, valuable as these are, they are but subsidiary aids to the
establishment of homes; for real homes are primarily centers of ideals
and teaching and only incidentally centers of cooking. The restoration
and raising of home ideals must, then, come from social life among
Negroes themselves; and does that social life need no leadership? It
needs the best possible leadership of pure hearts and trained heads,
the highest leadership of carefully trained men.

Such are the arguments for the Negro college, and such is the work that
Atlanta University and a few similar institutions seek to do. We believe
that a rationally arranged college course of study for men and women
able to pursue it is the best and only method of putting into the world
Negroes with ability to use the social forces of their race so as to
stamp out crime, strengthen the home, eliminate degenerates, and inspire
and encourage the higher tendencies of the race not only in thought and
aspiration but in every-day toil. And we believe this, not simply
because we have argued that such training ought to have these effects,
or merely because we hope for such results in some dim future, but
because already for years we have seen in the work of our graduates
precisely such results as I have mentioned: successful teachers of
teachers, intelligent and upright ministers, skilled physicians,
principals of industrial schools, business men, and above all, makers of
model homes and leaders of social groups, out from which radiate subtle
but tangible forces of uplift and inspiration. The proof of this lies
scattered in every State of the South, and, above all, in the
half-unwilling testimony of men disposed to decry our work.

Between the Negro college and industrial school there are the strongest
grounds for co-operation and unity. It is not a matter of mere emphasis,
for we would be glad to see ten industrial schools to every college. It
is not a fact that there are to-day too few Negro colleges, but rather
that there are too many institutions attempting to do college work. But
the danger lies in the fact that the best of the Negro colleges are
poorly equipped and are to-day losing support and countenance, and that,
unless the nation awakens to its duty, ten years will see the
annihilation of higher Negro training in the South. We need a few
strong, well-equipped Negro colleges, and we need them now, not
to-morrow; unless we can have them and have them decently supported,
Negro education in the South, both common-school and industrial, is
doomed to failure, and the forces of social regeneration will be fatally
weakened, for the college to-day among Negroes is, just as truly as it
was yesterday among whites, the beginning and not the end of human
training, the foundation and not the cap-stone of popular education.

Strange is it not, my brothers, how often in America those great
watchwords of human energy--"Be strong!" "Know thyself!" "Hitch your
wagon to a star!"--how often these die away into dim whispers when we
face these seething millions of black men? And yet do they not belong to
them? Are they not their heritage as well as yours? Can they bear
burdens without strength, know without learning, and aspire without
ideals? Are you afraid to let them try? Fear rather, in this our common
fatherland, lest we live to lose those great watchwords of Liberty and
Opportunity which yonder in the eternal hills their fathers fought with
your fathers to preserve.



Abel, 377

Abolition, Abolitionists, 13, 17, 18, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 144, 145,
328, 412, 420

Abraham, 306, 373

Academy, French, 95, 294 Negro, 159

Achilles, 455

Adams, John Quincy, 116, 412, 413

Advocate, Southwestern Christian, 455

Æneid, 455

Æneas, 455

Africa, 14, 18, 26, 102, 169, 202, 220, 227, 243, 244, 245, 246, 249,
257, 258, 263, 265, 375, 376, 390, 422, 429, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435,
438, 439, 463, 478, 479, 480

Africa, Central, 169, 426 East, 426 East Coast of, 426 South, 426 West,

African, 13, 14, 15, 26, 38, 68, 157, 158, 263, 264, 373, 422, 439, 445,
465, 468

Afro-American, 329, 464, 472

Alabama, 217, 236, 376

Alexander the Great, 330, 464

Alfred the Great, 267, 269

Allah, 381

Alvord, J. W., 384

Amazon River, 182

Amendment, 13th, 70 14th, 70, 76, 79, 468 15th, 70, 155, 310, 469

Ames, Alexander, 130

Ames, Capt., 190

A. M. E. Church, 475

America, 38, 43, 48, 102, 212, 239, 257, 268, 270, 304, 307, 313, 320,
330, 375, 378, 395, 422, 453, 494

America, South, 48

American, 36, 43, 45, 47, 97, 99, 103, 128, 129, 130, 134, 138, 144,
166, 216, 263, 266, 316, 320, 334, 365, 368, 396, 400, 401, 418, 422,
423, 446, 447, 449, 461, 462, 464, 468, 471, 484, 490

American University, 382

Anderson, Charles W., 211

Andover, 130

Andrews, Gov. John A., 196, 415

Anglo-Saxon, 85, 258, 265, 266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 271, 272, 273, 274,
291, 292, 295, 335, 368, 376, 411, 443, 464, 473

Antietam, 198

Appeal, Memphis, 193

Appolodorus, 465

Appomatox, 192, 291, 330, 484

Arab, 442

Arcadia, 178, 198

Archimedes, 213

Arctic, 422

Areopagus, 383

Arkansas, 357

Arlington Heights, 133, 381

Army, American, 192, 193, 339 5th Corps, 288 United States, 277, 281

Aristotle, 365

Arnett, Bishop, 471

Arnold, Benedict, 68

Aryan, 228

Asia, 227

Athaneum Club, 263

Athens, 385, 398

Atlanta, 181, 187

Atlanta University, 494, 503

Atlantic, 348 Ocean, 466

Attucks, Crispus, 125, 127, 129, 130, 131, 132, 415, 469

Augusta, 193

Augustine, 116

Austrian, 279

Avalanche, Memphis, 193


Baal, 353

Babylon, 42

Bacon, Lord, 241, 464

Badeau, General, 192

Balaam, 354

Balak, 118

Balaklava, 291

Baltimore, 101, 391, 483

Bancroft, 421

Bangweolo, Lake, 430

Bank, Freedmen's, 251

Banks, Gen., 198

Banneker Literary Club, 125

Bannockburn, Battle of, 27

Banquo, 294

Baptist, 475, 481

Barnato, Barney, 260, 261

Bass, Harry W., 472

Baylor's Field, 192

Bayou, M., 10, 20

Beard, Gen. O. T., 197

Beatitudes, Mount of, 109

Bechauna, 245

Beck, Mr., 68

Belgium, 470

Berea College, 334

Berkshires, 414

Bethlehem, 204

Bible, 44, 364, 365, 400, 402, 435

Black Battalion, 338, 341, 342, 346

Bliss, Judge, 61

Blue Bells, 304

Blumenbach, 294

Blyden, Edward Wilmot, 263

Boker, 119

Bonaparte, Napoleon, 23, 25, 26, 29, 330, 423

Bordentown, Manual Training and Industrial School, 397

Boston, 127, 130, 131, 177, 191, 296, 305, 412, 415, 469

Boston Common, 191

Boston Council, 125

Boston Gazette, 131

Boston Suffrage League, 305

Boston Massacre, 125

British, 20, 22, 125, 127, 129, 131, 463

Brougham, Lord, 359

Boughton, Prof. J., 227

Bowen, J. W. E., 471

Boyer, 16

Brown, John, 307, 346

Browning, Robert, 399

Brownsville, Pa., 461

Brownsville, Texas, 338, 345

Bruce, Robert, 27

Bruce, B. K., 471

Brutus, 436

Bryant, 118

Buchanan, James, 147

Bull Run, 198

Bunker Hill, 128, 130, 189, 291, 297, 298, 412, 415

Burke, Edmund, 118, 344

Burlingame, Anson, 128

Burmah, 202

Burns, Robert, 338

Burton, 168

Butler, Gen. B. F., 187, 193

Byron, 438


Cæsar, 141, 178, 306, 330, 402, 473

Cailloux, Capt., 199

Cain, 377

Calais, 171

Caldwell, James, 127

Calhoun, John C., 97, 293

California, 45

Calvary, 321

Cambridge University, 149, 388

Camden, 68

Campbell, Thomas, 118

Canaan, 374, 402

Capital, 381

Carey, Henry C., 255

Carlyle, 429, 443

Carnegie Peace Building, 381

Carney, Sergeant, 200, 214, 210

Carolinas, 488

Carolina, North, 131, 233, 234, 235

Carolina, South, 67, 68, 78

Carolina, South Regulars, 197

Carter, W. Justin, 265

Catholic, 381

Catholic University, 382

Cavalier, 270, 463

Cavalry, United States, 9th, 296 10th, 288 25th, 470

Census Federal, 468

Centurion, 398

Cephalus, 65

Chambezi River, 430

Chancellorsville, 383

Channing, Dr., 117, 167

Chapin Farm, 187

Charleston, 190, 326

Chatham, 118

Chattanooga, 92

Chicago, 277, 391

Chinese, 202, 452

Chinese Government, 63

Christian, 121, 373, 440

Christianity, 441, 476, 477, 478

Christian Church, 118

Christophe, 28

Chobungo, 434

Church Extension Society, 475

Cicero, 65, 118, 398

Cincinnati, 98

Civil Liberty, 70

Civil Rights, 70, 71, 77, 89

Civil Rights Bill, 67, 89

Civil War, 193, 281, 348, 349, 383, 468, 469, 470, 496

Clark, William, 388

Clarkson, 118, 331

Clay, Henry, 324

Clover Hill, Va., 184, 198, 202

Coburn, Tites, 130

Coleridge, 168

Coleridge, Samuel T., 432

Colored Orphan Asylum, 19, 31

Colored Soldiers, 140, 141, 209

Colored Troops, U. S., 4th, 192 8th, 200 13th, 191 32d, 200 35th, 200
102d, 200

Columbus, 59

Committee of Safety (Tenn.), 193

Concord, 412

Confederacy, 153, 191, 231, 350

Confederate Army, 281

Confederate Congress, 194, 197

Confederate States, 142

Congregational, 476, 81

Congress, 67, 69, 70, 73, 75, 80, 83, 84, 85, 98, 155, 190, 197, 233,
234, 241, 327, 461 38th, 117, 120 56th, 233

Congo, 102

Connecticut, 187, 195

Constantine, 116

Constantinople, 381

Constitution, 44, 51, 56, 70, 75, 76, 77, 78, 85, 86, 98, 122, 123, 138,
215, 222, 235, 236, 237, 280, 308, 324, 326, 329, 335, 343, 389, 392,
413, 417, 468, 486

Convention, Sunday School, 291

Cook, George William, 379

Cooper Institute, 389

Coppin, Fanny Jackson, 251

Coppin, Levi J., 243

Corbin, Gen., 283

Cornhill, 125, 126, 131

Cornwallis, 469

Cortez, 433

Cotton States and International Exposition, 181, 187

Court of St. James, 263

Court, Dist. of U. S., 49

Court, Supreme, 71, 73, 75, 77, 78, 85, 308

Covington, 98

Cowper, 118

Crisis, The, 491

Croesus, 366

Cromwell, 306

Cross, Samuel Creed, 389

Croton River, 189

Crummell, Alexander, 159

Cuba, 288, 395

Curran, 118

Cummings, Harry, 472

Curtis, James L., 321

Cuyahoga County, 49

Cyrus, 115


Dancy, John C., 475

Dane, 213

Darien, 433

Darwin, 104

Davidson, Arthur E., 95

Davis, 97

Davis, Jefferson, 297

Davis, John, 192

Davis, D. Webster, 291

Dawes, 78

Dauphin, Fort, 27

Da Vinci, 402

Dayton, O., 219

Declaration of Independence, 41, 52, 97, 98, 151, 220, 308, 315, 320,
349, 383, 411, 419

Delaware, 195

Democratic, 90, 93, 94, 101

Demosthenes, 224, 365

Desdemona, 294

Dessalines, 28, 30

Disfranchisement, 389

District of Columbia, 41, 135, 142, 327, 382, 384, 413

Donaldson Fort, 330

Dock Square, 125

Donop, Count, 130, 190

Double Dragon, 63

Douglass, Frederick, 41, 133, 318, 471

Douglass Hospital, 227

Douglass, Stephen A., 418

Dover, Del., State College, 403

Draconian, 339, 340

Drummond, 236, 237

DuBois, W. E. B., 471, 491

Dumas, Alexander, fils, 95

Dunbar, Alice M., 425

Dunbar, Paul Laurence, 421, 471

Dundore, Earl, 188

Durham, N. C., 357

Dutch, 366


East Bridgewater, 130

Edward the Confessor, 269

Edwards, Jonathan, 117

Edinburgh, 361

Egypt, 209, 227, 330, 377, 452

Egyptians, 103, 123, 372, 381, 465

El Caney, 222

Elijah, 307, 353

Elliott, Robert Brown, 67, 471

Elizabeth, Queen, 423

Emancipation, 18, 40, 97, 120, 140, 142, 148, 153, 334, 369, 410, 413,
414, 416, 419, 420, 421, 424, 461, 465, 471, 475, 484

Emancipation Day, 164

Emancipation Proclamation, 140, 142, 153, 285, 319, 335, 409, 410, 411,
412, 434, 461, 465, 466, 471, 484

Emancipator, The Great, 322, 331, 424, 433

Emerson, 278

England, 55, 271, 281, 359, 413, 426, 439

English, 23, 362, 413, 434

Englishman, 204, 238

Ephraim, 482

Episcopal, Protestant, 400

Episcopalian, 476, 481

Epworth League, 403, 406

Eratosthenes, 465

Erie, Lake, 222

Essex, 414

Ethiopian, 261

Estabrook, Prince, 129

Eureka, Literary Society, 265

Europe, 23, 26, 38, 98, 102, 128, 149, 212, 227, 433, 452

Everett, Edward, 403


Faneuil Hall, 98, 305, 318

Federal Government, 466

Federal Union, 463

Ferguson, Robert, 361

Feudal System, 163

Fifteenth Street Presbyterian Church, 347

Fitzgerald, 473

Fleetwood, C. A., 187

Florence, 306

Florida, 30, 197, 389

Fontainebleau, 423

France, 13, 21, 27 171, 228, 263, 293

François, Jean, 20, 21

Franklin, Benjamin, 116, 188, 464

Freedman, Aid Society, 149 Bank, 498 Monument, 133 Schools for, 384

Freeman, Jordan, 68, 189

Fremont, Gen., 140

French, 15, 19, 20, 29, 30, 263

Frenchman, 204, 228

Foraker, Joseph Benson, 337, 338, 342, 343

Force Bill, 178

Frye, Col., 190

Fugitive Slave Law, 49, 58, 59, 60, 327


Gaines, W. J., 257

Ganges River, 275

Garrison, William Lloyd, 97, 98, 198, 208, 228, 307, 308, 310, 311, 314,
318, 319, 346, 349, 412, 413, 415, 416

Garden of Eden, 432

Gates, Gen., 188

General Assembly, 24

George III, 132, 469

Georgetown College, 382

Georgia, 69, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 81, 82, 83, 173, 175, 176, 193, 197,
257, 389

Gerry, 412

German, 204

Germany, 220

Gettysburg, 198, 330, 383

Giddings, 116

Gideon, 279

Gilead, Forest of, 307

Gilmore, Toby, 130

Gliddon, 168

Gold Coast, 244

Golden Rule, 335, 349

Gonaves, 28

Grady, Henry A., 174

Grant, U. S., 149

Gray, Samuel, 127

Gray's Ferry, 192

Great Britain, 18, 102, 187, 268, 469

Great Cornerstone Speech, 350

Greece, 228, 271, 365, 372, 455

Greek, 291, 293, 372, 380, 426

Greek Grammar, 219, 293

Greek Slave, 417

Greeley, Horace, 328

Greene, Col., 189

Greene, Gen., 68

Greener, Richard T., 63

Gregoire, Abbe, 293

Gregory, James Francis, 397

Grimke, Archibald, 337

Grimke, Francis J., 347

Griswold, Fort, 189

Guards, Louisiana Native, 198

Guards, National, 281

Guinea, 102

Guasimas, Las, 222


Hague, The, 381

Hahn, Gov., 333

Hall, Philadelphia, 58

Halpine, Col., 195

Haman, 115

Hamilton, Alexander, 68, 70, 71

Hamilton's History of the American People, 70

Hamites, 227

Hampden, 464

Hampton Institute, 367

Hancock, John, 412, 464

Hardin County, 323

Harlan, Justice, 334

Harper, Frances Ellen Watkins, 101

Harper's Ferry, 307

Harris, 82

Harrison, Benjamin, 188

Harrison, Fort, 192

Harrisburg, Pa., 265

Harold, 251

Hart, William H. H., 488

Harvard, 63, 125

Hawkins, W. Ashbie, 483

Hayti, 13, 14, 15, 25, 29, 31, 32, 141, 170

Haytians, 16, 17, 19, 29, 30, 41

Hebrew, 381, 397

Henry, 16

Henry VII, Chapel of, 423

Henry, Patrick, 117

Herodotus, 432

Hesperides, 26

Hessians, 130, 189

Hilton, Sergeant, 193

Hodges, 144

Holland, 293, 470

Holy Grail, 471

Honey Hill, S. C., 200

Hood, Solomon P., 471

House of Representatives, 81, 133, 233

Howard's American Magazine, 227

Howard University, 63, 379, 380, 382, 383, 384, 385, 386, 387, 388, 483,

Howe, Cato, 130

Hudson, Port, 198, 222, 327, 469

Hunt, 168

Hunter, Gen. David, 194, 195

Huxley, 154


Ignatius, 116

Iliad, 455

Illinois, 307, 326, 334, 473

Independence Hall, 97

Independent, New York, 334

India, 452

Indian, 275, 375, 395

Indianapolis, 151

Infantry, 25th, 289, 337 48th New York, 197

Institute for Colored Youth, 251

Institutional Church, 389

Irish, 204

Israel, 118, 279, 374, 417

Italia, Fair, 204

Italian, 204, 228

Italy, 293


Jacksonville, 389

Jackson, Gen., 68, 69, 192, 193, 473

Jacob, 365

James, William, 280

Jamestown, 129, 463, 465

Japan, 452, 462

Japanese, 462

Japhetic, 263

Jason, William C., 403

Jay, 116

Jefferson, Thomas, 116, 139, 220

Jeffreys, 193

Jennings, Anderson, 49

Jeremiah, 118

Jerusalem, 43

Jews, 260, 263, 291, 301, 372, 383

Jewish, 263, 335

Jim Crow, 239, 351, 462, 488

John the Baptist, 307

John, King, 411

Johnson, Harvey, 471

Johnson, John, 192

Jones, Robert E., 455

Jordan, 68

Joseph, 280

Judah, 482


Kaffir, 245

Kamolondo, 430, 434

Keats, 433

Kentucky, 49, 69, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 78, 79, 83, 92, 307, 325, 334,
335, 448

Killarney, 204

Kipling, 402

Kitchin, 233, 234, 235

Kubla Khan, 432

Ku Klux Klan, 350


Lacaedemonians, 299

Lacroix, Gen., 23

La Caste, 192

Lafayette, 58, 117

Lanarkshire, 425

Lancaster, 130

Langston, Charles H., 49, 61

Langston, John Mercer, 97, 471

Langton, 27

Launfal, Sir, 202

Latin, 335, 426

Laveaux, 21

Leavenworth, Fort, 283

Leclerc, Gen., 27, 28, 29

Lee, Gen. Robt. E., 191, 194, 484

Leipsic, 388

Leo, X, Pope, 117

Leonidas, 27

Lepelole, 428

Leroy, Iola, 101

Lethe, 221

Lewis, Job, 130

Lewis, William H., 409

Lexington, 129, 412

Liberator, The, 308

Liberia, 33, 38, 39, 63, 263

Liberian College, 159

Library of Congress, 381

Lieber, 70

Lincoln, Abraham, 99, 117, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 124, 125, 128, 129,
130, 131, 132, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144, 145, 146, 147,
148, 149, 150, 153, 154, 221, 278, 295, 303, 305, 307, 308, 318, 321,
323, 324, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 335, 336, 346,
347, 401, 409, 410, 411, 413, 418, 421, 424, 434, 464, 469, 471, 484

Lincoln, Lake, 434

Lincoln, Park, 133

Lincoln University, 425

Livingstone, David, 425, 426, 427, 428, 429, 431, 433, 435, 437, 439,
440, 441, 442, 443, 479

Livingstone, Mrs., 436

Locke, 63

Lomami, 434

London, Jack, 439

London Missionary Society, 426

Longfellow, 118, 413, 438

Lookout Mountain, 330, 383

Lord, Miss, 385

Louisiana, 103, 151, 155, 192, 217, 331

Louisville, 92

L'Ouverture, Toussaint, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32,
330, 464

Louvre, 402

Lovejoy, 116, 318

Low, Barzilai, 130

Lowe, 54

Lowell, James Russell, 230, 411, 413

Lualaba River, 430, 434

Luapula River, 430

Lumpkin's Jail, 295

Luther, 306

Lynch, John R., 89

Lynch, Thomas, 188

Lyon, Ernest, 461


Mabie, Hamilton Wright, 425

Magna Charta, 269, 271, 411

Mead, Edwin D., 334, 335

Maine, 157

Maitland, Gen., 22

Marathon, 98

Marinit, 24

Marsellaise, 204

Mary, Queen of Scots, 423

Maryland, 195, 334, 488

Mason, 97, 471

Mason and Dixon's Line, 97, 391, 393

Massachusetts, 78, 79, 125, 132, 195, 205, 206, 208, 409, 412, 413, 414,
415, 416, 424

Massachusetts Committee of Safety, 188, 189

Massachusetts, 54th Regiment of, 190, 196, 197, 198, 206, 207, 208 55th
Regiment of, 200

Massachusetts House of Representatives, 409

Massey Hall, 291

Matrick, Quack, 130

Maximus, 116

McClellan, 469

Mecca, 275, 362

Medal of Honor, 187

Memphis, 194

Mercury, Charleston, 193

Mesurado, 36

Methodism, 382

Methodist, 475, 481

Metropolitan A. M. E. Church, 337

Methusalah, 63

Mexican War, 281

Michelet, 168, 169

Miller, Kelly, 445

Millikin's Bend, 198, 199, 212, 296, 469

Milton, 118, 444, 449

Mississippi, 91, 376 River, 147

Missouri, 195 Department of, 288

Mobile, 191, 192

Moero, 430, 439

Mohammed, 381

Mohammedan, 263

Moliere, Abbe, 24

Monographic Magazine, 445

Monroe, Fort, 283

Monrovia, 33, 63

Montauk Point, 288

Montgomery, 471

Montgomery, Major, 189

Moore, Gov., 194

Moravians, 244

Morris, 118

Moses, 117, 118, 306, 331, 380, 465

Mossell, N. F., 227

Moton, R. R., 367


Nashville, 190, 193, 211

National Association of Negro Women, 173

National Religious Training School, 357

Navy, American, 191

Nemesis, 273, 276

New England, 15, 420

New England Anti-Slavery Society, 412

New Hampshire, 187

New Jerusalem, 473

New Market Heights, 192

New Orleans, 68, 97, 177, 194, 326, 455 Battle of, 296

New York, 19, 187, 192, 195, 391, 393, 488

Newburyport, 307

Newport, 189

Ngami, Lake, 426

Niagara, 213

Nile, 227, 275, 426, 432

Norman, 213, 258, 272, 417

North Pole, 443

Northern, Gov., 173

Nyassa, 426


Oberlin, 51, 52, 241

Ocean Grove, N. J., 159

Odd Fellows, G. U. O., 177

Odysseus, 455

Odyssey, 455

Ohio, 49, 53, 54, 195, 473

Olustee, 198, 200, 327

Omar, Mosque of, 381

O'Reilly, John Boyle, 354

O'Reilly, Miles, 195

Orpheus, 301

Osceola, 30

Othello, 64, 294

Oxford, 159, 388


Pacific Ocean, 45, 348, 433

Paine, 412

Paleolithic, 227

Pan-American Building, 381

Pariah, 153

Paris, 402

Park, Mungo, 169

Parker, Theodore, 413

Parliament, 270, 344

Parnassus, 179

Pascal, M., 24

Pauline, 383

Payne, 471

Peary, 443

Penbrooke, Pa., 265

Pennsylvania, 192, 195, 425

Penticostal, 476

Perry, 191, 222

Persians, 372

Peter, 301, 302

Petersburg, Va., 192, 222, 330

Pharaoh, 39, 279, 464

Pharos, 34

Philadelphia, 13, 391

Philip, 224

Philippines, 395

Phillips, Wendell, 97, 98, 208, 318, 330, 346, 413, 414, 463

Phoenicia, 464

Phoenix, 241

Picayune, New Orleans, 194

Pickens, Prof., 328

Pilgrim Fathers, 220

Pilgrims, 463

Pillow, Fort, 198, 200, 469

Pinchback, P. B. S., 151

Pitcaim, Major, 130, 189

Pittsburg, Landing, 469

Plancianos, 198

Plato, 115

Pleiades, 403

Plymouth, 130

Plymouth Rock, 129, 220, 385, 463

Polycarp, 116

Poor, Salem, 190

Port-au-Paix, 21

Port-au-Prince, 170

Portugal, 293, 433

Potomac, 382

Potomac, Army of the, 140, 191

Potomac, Valley of the, 383

Potter's Field, 423

Prætorian Guard, 178

Presbyterian, 476, 481

Prescott, Maj. Gen., 189

Preston, Capt., 126, 237

Price, 471

Price, John, 49

Proverbs, 362

Providence, New, 131

Ptolemy, 432

Puritan, 129, 270, 412

Pyramids, 465


Quaker, 381

Quebec, 291

Quixotic, 435


Raleigh, Sir Walter, 241

Ransom, R. C., 205

Raynal, 21

Raynham, 130

Rebellion, War of the, 212, 463, 469

Reconstruction, 87

Recorder, Christian, 251

Red Bank, 130

Red Shirt Brigade, 350

Reformation, 270

Renan, M., 263

Representatives, House of, 344

Republic, 151, 287, 290, 314, 352, 388, 401, 418, 419, 469

Revells, 471

Review, A. M. E. Church, 205

Revolution, 58, 131, 222, 280, 468

Revolution, American, 58, 128, 129, 412, 463

Revolution, French, 307

Revolutionary Veteran, 130

Revolutionary War, 187, 191

Rhode Island, 130, 189, Battalion, 187

Richmond, 187, 291, 295, 350, 469

Rigaud, Gen., 22

Riley, Fort, 283, 288

Robespierre, 30

Rochambeau, Gen., 27, 29, 30

Rochester, 41

Roderick Dhu, 65

Roman, 330, 417, 438

Roman Catholic Church, 290, 400

Roman Empire, 213

Romans, 291, 293, 371, 372, 380

Rome, 39, 141, 228, 263, 271, 371, 372, 381, 417

Roosevelt, 343, 470

Rough Riders, 222, 296, 470

Royal Geographical Society, 263, 432

Ruffin, J. St. P., 173

Ruffin, George L., 125

Runnymede, 411

Rush, Benjamin, 99

Ruskin, 278

Russian-Japanese War, 63

Ruth, 87


Sackett's Harbor, 192

Salem Gazette, 129

Salem, Peter, 130, 189, 415

Samana, 27

San Juan, 223, 470

San Juan Hill, 296, 297

Santo Domingo, 16, 19, 22, 25, 27, 28, 30, 41

Saul of Tarsus, 365

Saunders, Prince, 13

Savary, 192

Savonarola, 306

Saxon, 213

Scarborough, W. S., 219, 293

Scotch, 442

Scotchman, 234

Scotland, 425

Scott, Sir Walter, 364, 443

Scottish, 361

Scriptures, 87

Senate, 136, 340, 343, 344

Sermon on the Mount, 291, 349

Servii, 417

Shakespeare, 464

Shaler, Capt., 191

Sharpe, 118

Shaw, Robert Gould, 190, 205, 209

Shepard, J. E., 357

Sheridan, 103

Sherman, 149

Shiloh, 198

Shirwa, Lake, 426

Shupanga, 439

Sierra Leone, 170

Sinbad, 294

Sirens, 300

Sistine Chapel, 381

Slaughter-House Cases, 71, 73, 77, 83


Slave Trade, 13, 15, 20, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 56, 58,
59, 72, 82, 86, 101, 102, 103, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 119,
122, 131, 138, 142, 144, 149, 151, 153, 161, 191, 194, 212, 228, 230,
237, 240, 253, 258, 308, 310, 312, 321, 327, 328, 410, 412, 433, 442,
445, 446, 466, 502

Smith, James McCune, 19

Smith, Harry, 472

Smith, Gen. W. F., 192

Socrates, 66, 115

Soldier's Home, 382

Solomon, 362

Solon, 366

Somerset, 413

Spain, 21, 228, 293, 366

Spaniard, 20, 21, 228

Spanish, 24, 470

Spanish-American War, 470

Spartan, 437

Spartanburg, N. C., 456

Spaulding, Martha, 388

Sphinx, 275

Springfield, 334

St. Helena Island, 197

St. Louis, 59, 391

St. Luke, 149

St. Paul, 278, 306, 385, 401

St. Paul's Cathedral, 381

St. Peter's Cathedral, 381

St. Sophia, 381

St. Thomas, 263

Stafford, 198

Slaughter-House Cases, 71, 73, 77, 83

Star Spangled Banner, 94

States Rights, 72

Stearns, George L., 196

Stephens, 69, 80, 350

Stevenson, R. L., 429

Steward, T. G., 277

Stoughton Corner, 130

Stuyvesant Institute, 19

Sullivan, 362

Sultan, 263

Sumner, Charles, 208, 220, 318, 346

Sumter, Fort, 83, 193

Supreme Court, 136


Taj-Mahal, 381

Talladega College, 328

Talmage, Dr., 304

Tanner, H.O., 421

Teague, Hilary, 33

Tennessee, 92, 195, 217, 448

Tennessee Centennial Exposition, 193, 211

Tennyson, 218, 438

Terence, 110

Teutons, 291

Texas, 75

Texas, Annexation of, 117

Thermopylæ, 27, 291

Thomas, Gen. Lorenzo, 195

Thompson, 118

Toronto, Canada, 291

Totten, Fort, 283

Trafalgar, 291

Trollope, 168

Turkey, 293, 452

Turner, Bishop, 471

Turner, Prof. J. W., 488

Tuskegee, 367, 455, 458


Ulysses, 300

Underwood, 236, 237

Union Army, 191

United States, 14, 15, 48, 56, 57, 73, 76, 77, 85, 137, 462, 470, 496


Valhalla, 423

Vance, J. M., 177

Varner, 187

Versailles, 423

Vicksburg, 103

Victoria Falls, 426, 432

Villate, 21

Virginia, 44, 82, 294, 367, 381

Virginia, West, 389

Vladivostok, 63

Von Moltke, 279


Wacht am Rhein, 204

Wagner, Fort, 198, 199, 209, 469

Waldron, J. M., 389

War College, 283

War Department, 195

War of 1812, 191

Warren, 415

Washington, Booker T., 181, 195, 421, 471

Washington, D. C., 98, 133, 135, 141, 283, 337, 347, 381, 389, 391, 466,

Washington, George, 68, 70, 116, 118, 189, 464

Washingtonian, 382

Water Lily, The, 378

Waterloo, 99, 291

Watts, 419

Wearin' o' the Green, 204

Webster, 127, 365

Wellington, 53, 57, 58, 60

West Indies, 158, 417

Westminster Abbey, 423, 426, 439

Westminster Assembly, 397

West Point, 281, 282, 283

White Caps, 350

White League, 103

White, George H., 233

Whittier, 118, 413

Wilberforce University, 118, 219

William III, 267, 269

Williams, E. F., 384

Williams, H. Price, 253

Willson, Hiram, 49, 61

Wilmington, Del., 403

Wilson's Landing, 296

Winchell, Dr., 227

Wittenberg, 306

Wolsey, Cardinal, 363

Wordsworth, 171, 438, 444


Yale University, 388, 399

Yorktown, 98, 189, 291

Yulee, 97

Y. M. C. A., 361, 478, 479


Zambezi River, 426

Zangwill, Israel, 263

Zanzibar, 438

Zion, 42, 43, 204

Zulu, 245

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence - The Best Speeches Delivered by the Negro from the days of - Slavery to the Present Time" ***

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