Viewing page 2 of 4

[[double line top border]]
[[3 columns]]
[[column 1]]
86
[[column 2]]
THE LIBERATOR
[[column 3]]
MAY 29
[[thin double line border, 6 columns]]
[[column 1]]
and little nations and men. If it be objected, that, as some personal vices, becoming deep seated and inveterate, cannot be abandoned immediately without extreme danger, and must therefore be gradually dropped, so this great evil must be abolished by slow degrees--that the immediate emancipation of the Southern slaves would be not only perilous to the country, but, above all, dangerous [[??]] ruinous to them--that they must be prepared first by education and instruction in the industrial arts--it is my sufficient reply, that the act of emancipation is essentially in the  will. The emancipation is, to all intents and purposes, achieved when there is a deliberate, manful, Christian determination to emancipate. This determination may be instantaneous, though its workings be slow. A man may be a slave to the habit of inebriety to such a degree that the immediate and total abstinence from all kinds of intoxicating liquors would be fatal to his constitution and his sanity. Let us grant it, for the sake of argument; still, if he ever means to reform at all, his will to reform, and to reform immediately, must be full, thorough, instantaneous, unswerving. He must see the full enormity of his offence; he must dread and abhor it, and must resolve, with all the energy of his soul, to do his very utmost to release himself from it. This done, the deed is virtually done, though months may elapse before it be entirely executed. The same principle holds good in the emancipation of slaves. It is very obvious to me, at least, that there must be preparation for it. But to say that, is only to say that the act must be a complex and comprehensive one, and not simple and individual; an act embracing  many acts, and no bare solitary, isolated transaction. It may be so; but the beginning, middle and end of the whole is done when the purpose to undertake is clearly and decisively taken up. We wish to see some manifestations of such a purpose fairly formed, vigorously conceived, grounded on Christian principle, resolute to accomplish to the fullest extent all that the laws of justice and mercy require, sternly bent upon bearing all things and enduring all things, for the sake of achieving the triumphant result. this sense, certainly, immediate emancipation presents no financial or political impossibilities. In this sense, every one must accept it, and urge the necessity of it, who is at all interesting in the freedom of the African race. I am not recommending now any plan of gradual emancipation, such as Mr. Jefferson suggested in Virginia, and Mr. Clay brought forward in Kentucky--plans which mediated the abolition of slavery just as fast as might be consistent with the comfort and convenience of the salve-owners--plans which were not proposed in the spirit of broad humanity, nor urged in the temper of a stern self-sacrifice. The principle of immediate emancipation demands self-sacrifice, and is founded upon humanity; it does not consult the convenience and comfort of the slave-owners, but, allowing that the accomplishment of the work may be slow, asserts that the end to be accomplished should be just and generous, that the determination to accomplish should be swift and energetic. Such, as I understand it, is the doctrine of immediate emancipation--a doctrine which has been misunderstood, misapprehended, abused and maligned, but which follows inevitably from the moral axioms with which the anti-slavery people start.

3. One other doctrine has been steadily avowed by the moral foes of slavery, which has been, if possible, still more obnoxious to the American mind. They insist that there shall be 'No Union with Slaveholders.'  This position is taken in the belief that such Union can only protect and strengthen the institution of slavery; that, instead of enabling us to act with more effect upon the Southern conscience, in which case it ought to be preserved, it fatally involves us in Southern guilt, pledges our aid in the slaveholder's behalf, and makes us the serviceable tools to execute his de-[[several words obscured]] together by this Union we can [[several words obscured by fold in original document]] verted by him to his slavery. Not for the sake of shirking responsibility, not with a view to save trouble, not with a pharisaical disposition to fling off people whom we ought to redeem, nor even with the design of shaking from their immaculate shoes the dust of complicity with unrighteous laws and usages for which they are not in the least responsible, is the doctrine, 'No Union with Slaveholders,' proclaimed; but because there is a belief that, while the Union is fast and close, the interests of the slave cannot be reached, nor the cause of his deliverance promoted. And this belief is not a fanatical notion, but a calm, deliberate conviction, grounded upon a large survey of facts, justified by the confessions of the more respectable presses both North and South, and confirmed by the attitude and character of the government.

But, allowing the truth of all this, it may fairly be asked, how is this dissolution of the Union to be brought to pass? It is one of those transactions that are easier talked about than done. A vast deal of thinking, arguing, teaching, persuading, converting, must precede an event like that. Imagine what a spiritual process must be passed through before a single State like Massachusetts could form and carry out the resolution of withdrawing itself from the remaining States. What are to be free States, and what not? Where is the dividing line to be drawn? Upon what terms, with what understanding, in what spirit is the separation to be executed? Before these questions can be answered, before they can be seriously entertained, the whole community must experience a radical change of heart. When it shall have experienced such a change from selfish greed to humane sentiments, from Mammon to the Lord, the thing is done, the way will be opened, the obstacles will be removed, the transaction will become the simplest possible.

We say, therefore, of disunion, as we said of immediate emancipation, that it must be a spiritual process before it can become an actual fact. It must begin, and ay, be completed, in the mind, and be all carried through potentially, before there can be the least approach towards a realization of it. To break away from the compact mechanically is quite impossible. The nation has no will or wish to execute the articles. But we may break off internally, with no [[several words obscured by fold]] in passing from [[several words obscured by fold]] understand it, is the meaning of Disunion. It is the separation of our interior selves from all sympathy with the slaveholding temper and projects; it is the disengaging our minds, radically and utterly, from the ideas, principles, prejudices and passions which sustain the institution of slavery; it is the withholding of our approval from the laws, local or organic, upon which such institutions must rest; it is the absolute 'coming out' from the ruling spirit of this age of savage money-getting and a barbarous contempt of man as man. This essentially and really is Disunion; not merely the breaking up of external relations, but the deliberate divorcement of minds that cannot thing, feel, hope, love, labor together. If our people would but endeavor to bring about a disunion like this, with other disunion, the liberal dissolution of the Union, would follow when it was time for it to come, and it would follow peaceably, as a matter of course. That this radical disunion does not exist to a considerable extent, and is in some degree felt, is openly confessed, not only in speeches and newspaper articles, but in criminations [sic] and recriminations, in wordy quarrels and bowie-knife brawls--in a general sense of uneasiness that amounts to a suppressed war--in a conflict of interests,  that must work down deeper and deeper until it becomes a conflict of principles. The North is beginning to see that the South is divided from it by its theory of government, its views of labor, its ideas respecting the social state of man, its notions of human rights and duties. It is the righteous work of good haters of slavery to open a gulf broader and more fathomless than this; to beget a conviction that there is and can be no fellowship between light and darkness, no union between Christianity [[fold obscures multiple words]] , nothing but absolute repulsion [[words obscured]] that believe man was made in God's image, a being to be enlightened, uplifted, blest, and minds that believe that man is an animal, to be worked, despised, and beaten.

If we are ever to exert any saving influence upon the slave-owners themselves--if we are ever to convince them of their mistake, or bring them to a conviction in harmony with our own--it is our duty to let them see that we cherish a conviction now that is hostile to their own. The day conquers the night, not by merging into it, as mild twilight, but by gathering all its most refulgent rays, and pouring in its shafts of light with constantly increasing vividness and force. And they who hope to overcome the ignorance and moral darkness wherein slavery shrouds itself must make it a solemn duty to withdraw themselves from its shadow with all possible speed, to stand, like the Angel of the Apocalypse, in the very noonday sun of Christian thought and feeling, and thus neutralize and expel the miasma that is breeding below. In no malignant temper need this be done, in no temper of party animosity towards the slaveholder, in no spirit of bitter human hate towards men who have inherited such a dreadful curse, and been educated into the infatuation of believing it to be a blessing. We may extend towards them all the allowances of a just and reasonable charity. But for all that, we must cherish in our own hearts a spirit that cannot live and breathe in the same atmosphere with them.

As to the Union, it is nothing more than a political catch-word. It answers in America to the word Loyalty in a monarchical government, a phrase that contains no substantial meaning that is applied by the most unscrupulous tories to the most infamous kings, and which dupes thick-headed people into the idea that they are patriots, when they are nothing but flunkeys. It may describe the mechanical junction of opposites as well as the free harmony of things congenial. I think it is recorded of the Etruscan King Mezentius, whom Virgil speaks of in the AEnead, that he used to punish his enemies by lashing them face to face with a corpse; and there the close-locked pair stood, day by day, the corpse gaining no vitality from the lusty body of its partner, but continually breathing its own taint into the heaving lungs of health, till the bright blood changed to black poison and the elastic frame became a lump of clay. There was such a case of indissoluble union. God save us from such a Union as that!

If it is objected to the anti-slavery people that they have contributed nothing tot he solution of the problem which they have been the chief agents in starting, that their function is only to furnish stimulants and not wisdom, it may be fairly answered that the solution will come when the problem shall have been set before the whole country with sufficient distinctness; that wisdom will not be wanting when incentives to its exercise shall have become strong enough. Where there is a will, there is a way: and, unhappily, the will is lacking yet. We are far yet from having touched the country's conscience, or moved its heart. When that shall be done, if it ever is to be done, the statesman will appear who will be adequate to express the moral convictions of the people in national laws and relationships; who, with the furnaces glowing in full blast below, and the winds of heaven blowing fresh above, will be able to guide the ship of Empire through the stormiest sea in safety.
[[line]]

Mr. PILLSBURY rose and offered the following resolutions:--

Resolved, That in John P. Hale of New Hampshire, Nathaniel P. Banks and Henry Wilson of Massachusetts, and the New York Tribune, we recognize full and fair exponents and representatives of the ac- [[words obscured]] a slaveholder for the Presidency, and that he would do the same again; and another, that he would today trust the interests of the country to a 'Palmetto man,' (meaning a South Carolinian,) and then adds, 'I would in Gold's name say, give us a Palmetto man always, forever, because wherever there is a Palmetto man, there is always a will'; another said in the Senate of the United States that the Republican party is pre-eminently the party of States Rights, and the other also declared to the Senate and to the South, that the Republican party is emphatically the party of the Union, and that, were it in power, ever Disunionist should die a traitor's death and leave a traitor's name in the history of the Republic; therefore,

Resolved, That until these men repent of these declarations, or the party repudiate these measures and brand them as they deserve, we shall hold the party and its leaders as really more dangerous to the cause of liberty and humanity than any party ever formed since the foundation of the government.

Adjourned till 3 o'clock, P.M.
[line]]

At the afternoon session, effective speeches were made by EDMUND QUINCY and WM. WELLS BROWN. Mr. GARRISON then read to the meeting the following resolutions:--

Whereas, evidently pressed and alarmed by the growing anti-slavery spirit of the times, threatening the withdrawal from it of public confidence and support, the American Tract Society, at its annual meeting last year, reluctantly appointed a Special Committee to inquire into and review the proceedings of the Society's Executive Committee, great complaint having been made against them for for refusing to issue a single tract or a single page against American chattel slavery, and also for having expurgated all condemnatory allusions to the 'sum of all villanies' from several foreign works republished by them;

And whereas, that Special Committee, composed largely of eminent Doctors of Divinity, have just made their report, which has been accepted by the Society, and which is characterized by all that is cowardly in spirit, deceptive in statement, and Jesuitical in phraseology, neither criminating the Executive Committee for their past inexcusable conduct, nor admitting that they have done wrong in any instance, [[words obscured]] slavery as a crime, but only vaguely alluding to those moral evils and [[words obscured]] known to promote;'

And, whereas, it is manifestly designed by that report to give neither offence to the slaveholder of the South, nor countenance to the Anti-Slavery movement of the North, but to quiet agitation in the ranks of the friends and patrons of the Tract Society, by administering an opiate prepared with all possible priestly cunning and skill; therefore, 

Resolved, That we renewedly bear our testimony against the American Tract Society as inherently pro-slavery and thoroughly time-serving, and therefore destitute of Christian integrity and common humanity--so that to contribute to its funds, or give it any countenance whatever, is to be guilty of a moral offence of the first magnitude. 

Resolved, That in continuing on its Publishing Committee the Rev. Nehemiah Adams of Boston, the author of that surprisingly audacious and wicked work, entitled 'A South-Side View of Slavery,' the American Tract Society as deepened its guilt and revealed its moral deformity so plainly, that they will henceforth be utterly without excuse who shall continue to bestow their patronage upon it.

Mr. GARRISON said that, as the report of the Society referred to in the resolutions had not been printed for a sufficient length of time to have enabled gentlemen to examine it, he would not call for their adoption at present.

The resolutions offered at the forenoon session, by Mr. PILLSBURY, were laid on the table, after a brief but animated discussion.

A list of Officers for the ensuing year was adopted, and the Society ended its best anniversary. 

[[Column 3]]
N. Y. CITY ANTI-SLAVERY SOCIETY.
[[line]]

The Fourth Anniversary of this Society was held at the City Assembly Rooms, on Wednesday evening, May 13th--SYDNEY HOWARD GAY, Esq., its President, occupying the chair. The attendance was large and highly respectable. Stirring and eloquent speeches were made by CHARLES C. BURLEIGH, ERNESTINE L. ROSE, WENDELL PHILLIPS, FRANCES E. WATKINS, AND WM. LLOYD GARRISON. We have room only for the [[line break]]
SPEECH OF WENDELL PHILLIPS
[[line]]

Mr. CHAIRMAN:

I should be very happy to address the audience, if I had the voice to do so. My tones will be apology enough for not doing it; it would be as painful for you to listen as for me to speak--perhaps far more so. I therefore only fulfil[sic] the advertisement of the morning by coming before you, the living evidence of the truth of this apology. I rejoice to think that we do not need so many words, and that events are preaching for us as loudly as lips, and more so. I believe that a single act is better than a hundred speeches, and I think that any thing in the course of conduct that leads by probability to a collision[[??]] betwixt Northern and Southern action, hastens the anti-slavery triumph by years. To-day I recognize in the action of the Tract Society the opening on[[??]] course of conduct likely to bring the South into collision with Northern religious sentiment. The Tract Society, you know, appointed a Committee to whitewash that Society. They spent a year in the endeavor to do it, did their best, have not succeeded, and in their report, printed to-day, they confess, by implication, all the charges made against that Society, and direct the Publishing Committee in the future to place slavery on the catalogue of war, intemperance, Catholicism, and other moral evils. (Applause.) That is a great triumph. They only peep and mutter; they speak very equivocal words; it is only the flash of twilight. You know the man that tried to extract sunbeams from cucumbers was thought insane; we have done it (laughter and applause): we have got a sunbeam out of the Tract Society; we have got the first twilight confession of duty. Suppose they give to their colporteurs any sort of tract--for instance, the sermon of C.C. Jones, of Georgia, the report of the Synod of Kentucky, or that twenty year old testimony of Mr. Breckinridge--suppose their colporteurs distribute it through the Carolinas; why, the volcano will have an eruption, and the point of the attack will be the Tract Society. Thank God for the day! I believe that even Northern cowardice can be kicked into courage. (Laughter.) I believe that the religion of the Tract Society can be kicked up to the level of my friend Mrs. Rose's infidelity. (Applause.)

By the way, in regard to that, let me say, my Christianity is tested by fruits. He is a wise man that knows what he believes. I am not certain that my friend Mrs. Rose (with all due deference, let me say it) knows what she believes, but, by the evidence of fruits, she is an exceedingly good Christian, according to my standard. (Applause.) God grant a wonderful increase of just such infidels in these sixteen States. (Applause.)

Our friend Remond inquired, yesterday, what could be meaner than a Northern doughface. I will tell him. If rumor is to be trusted, Dr. Ross has been a slave, has colored blood in his veins, was emancipated, inherited his master's fortune, and now he is the apologist, in the vilest of language and the most infidel of spirits, of the slave system. He is meaner than the doughface, for a renegade is meaner than all. (Applause.) And they have sent him to the next New School General Assembly. I hope the West, where it meets, will spew him back into Alabama. (Applause.)

I have a word to say to New York. I want your old State to lead the van, three millions strong, in the collision with the Slave Power. You have not been factious enough--not half. You have not had your [[several words obscured by fold]] poet, said of his countrymen, 'If we are slaves, we are rebellious slaves, at least.' I boast the same of Massachusetts. I saw a friend to-day just returned from Carolina; he said they didn't talk of the North down there; they spoke of the South and Massachusetts. (Laughter and applause.) When George the Third got angriest, he named John Hancock and Sam Adams. (Laughter.) The blood has not run out; when Charleston gets maddest, she does not say the North, she says Massachusetts. (Applause.) We have wiped the Northern plume and put it in our crest; we are the worst behaved of the Northern States--thank God for that. (Applause.) I want you to earn, with your wider surface and larger numbers, even a stronger place than Massachusetts. I want you to say, in the face of the nation, the Empire State knows no slave law; no slave-hunter shall ever tread her soil; if the Federal Government undertakes to send its marshal here to take a man on its soil we will strip him naked, and fling him into the sea. (Loud applause.) Do men say that is treason? Treason to what? Treason to the Constitution? Where is it? Go search for it beneath the burning ashes of Lawrence; go make yourself blind seeking for it amid the midnight darkness of the Dred Scott decision. The Constitution is blotted out in the blood of Charles Sumner. (Applause.) I know no Constitution; success to the strongest arm; might makes right today.

I want a collision. The little State of Wisconsin, how nobly she is fighting the battle! The United States officers put Booth in jail; she took him out. They took his presses; she took them back again. Seward, Wilson, Giddings, Sumner rolled into one, don't make one Chief Justice Smith, who defied the United States Court to the utmost. (Applause.) Mahommedans[sic] say that one hour of justice is worth seventy years of prayer. One act is worth a century of eloquence. When Judge Smith flung himself in the face of the United States writ, and declared that it should not run in Wisconsin, he commenced the beginning of the end. But it is a small State, in the gristle, not yet hardened into the bone of manhood. We want the same thing done in New York or Massachusetts. We want a collision; I don't care how it comes; I want the Federal Government divided; I want State sovereignty assumed. Massachusetts is resolving to grant passports to colored men. It is the first assertion of State sovereignty. I want a public opinion, a party--I don't care what its name is--that shall inaugurate a policy of the States that will be up to the times and defy the slave law, no matter where it carries them. We are no longer to be hoodwinked by the mere mystery of the Constitution. The South does all she can, all she must; she never has done any thing that was unnecessary, she never has asked any thing that was not necessary to her safety. She has never done any thing that policy did not dictate; she never will, and she is pledged to every act by the necessity of her position.

I will not detain you longer (cries of 'Go on, go on'); I have not the strength to detain you longer. I hope I shall yet come to New York city at a time when this doctrine of State sovereignty is in full bloom (applause); when Sates will remember their function in the protection of liberty; when not two single ideas, not two individuals, but two organizations, States, will be trustees and champions of the great principle of liberty. Not that I distrust the power of ideas; not that to those men and women into whose faces I look this hour, I would send any despondency by the slightest word, uttered in the smallest circle, by the feeblest voice. O, no; I believe in the power of ideas, and I have twenty years' experience behind me of faith in words.

I was told a story to-day, a temperance story, which will illustrate just as well this point. A mother, on the green hills of Vermont, stood at her garden gate, holding by her right hand a son of sixteen years, mad with love of the sea. 'Edward,' said she, 'they tell me that the great temptation of the seaman's life is 

[[column 4]]

drink; promise me, before you quit your mother's hand, that you never will drink.' Said he--for he told me the story--'I gave her the promise; I went the broad globe over--Calcutta, the Mediterranean, San Francisco, the Cape of Good Hope, and for forty years, whenever I saw a glass filled with sparkling liquor, my mother's form by the garden gate rose up before me, and to-day, at sixty, my lips are innocent of the taste of liquor.' (Applause.) Was not that sweet evidence of the power of a single word? And yet it was but half; for, said he, 'Yesterday, there came into my counting-room a young man of forty, and asked me, "Do you know me?" "No," said I. "I was brought once," said he to my informant, "drunk into your presence on ship board; you were a passenger; the captain kicked me aside; you took me into your berth, kept me there till I had slept off the intoxication, and then you asked me if I had a mother. I said, never that I knew of; I never heard a mother's voice. You told me of yours at the garden gate, and to-day, twenty years later, I am master of one of the finest packets in New York, and I came to ask you to come and see me." (Applause.)

How far back that little candle throws its beam!--that mother's word on the green hill-side of Vermont. God be thanked for the almighty power of a single word! (A voice, 'Amen.') Still, notwithstanding the potency of that, in this epoch of the world of ours, we want to stereotype ideas into statutes; we want the power, whenever we can get it, of organization, to meet the shock of organization. I would have Anti-Slavery take Massachusetts, and put her, like a block, beneath the wheels of the Union, and checkmate it--or, better still, call home William H. Seward from the hopeless minority of the Senate, give him the Empire State for a thunderbolt, and, my word for it, he will annihilate the Carolinas. (Great applause.)
[[double line]]

AMERICAN TRACT SOCIETY

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON INVESTIGATION

The American Tract Society celebrated its 32d anniversary, Wednesday morning, May 13th, at Dr. Hutton's church on Washington Square, in the city of New York.

Chief Justice Williams, of Connecticut, presided, and prayer was offered by Rev. Dr. Spring. 

The Report of the Committee of Investigation was presented by Judge Jessup, prefaced by a few remarks by Hon. Theodore Frelinghuysen, who bore testimony to the willingness with which the officers of the Society had offered facilities to the Committee in the prosecution of its labors. The great interest attached to this Report leads us to give the more important parts of it in full.

REPORT
The Committee appointed at the last annual meeting of the American Tract Society, to examine and review the proceedings of its Executive Committee, respectfully report: [[new paragraph]]
That they have attended to that service, and held several meetings in the months of March, April and May, at the Tract-house in this city.

The Committee entered upon this duty with a deeply felt sense of their need of Divine aid. 

They sought the light of God's spirit; and he who never said to 'the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in fain,' granted, as we trust, a gracious answer.

It is to be remembered, that the Tract Society was founded, not to discuss disputed questions in theology, or morals, or politics, but to spread the truth in its simplicity and purity, as it is held and loved by all evangelical Christians.

It is due to this interesting occasion, to record with devout thankfulness to God, the harmony and Christian confidence that prevailed in the discussion and adoption of the resolutions on the subject of slavery, forming a part of the Report.

And the Committee cherish the hope, that by the divine blessing, their views of the subject will meet the approbation of their Christian friends in all parts of our country.

It should be constantly borne in mind, that the work of faith is not complete without the labor of love and the patience of hope. And who can doubt that with such influences as faith, hope, and charity [[words obscured]] chastened patience that this and all other moral evil shall yield to the promised triumphs of the everlasting Gospel?

The Committee first met on the 17th day of March. They were most cordially welcomed by the Executive Committee and Secretaries of the Society, who proffered all the aid in their power to the Committee in the investigations and examinations which it might be deemed proper to make, and stated that the whole proceedings of the Society in all their varied departments, and all the records and doings of the several committees, would be open to inspection. They also proffered their own personal aid at any and all times when the Committee might desire it.

This Committee had several meetings, and having placed the investigation into the business and financial affairs of the Society in the hands of a sub-committee, are now enabled to give to the Society the results of their deliberations and examinations.

In their conclusions the Committee were unanimous, and although deprived of the personal presence of three of its members, yet the concurrence of two of them in the important parts of the Report was procured.

During all the sittings of the Committee, they were most cheerfully and fully served by the officers of the society with all the facilities for their investigations which were desired.

The Committee had most full and free discussions of the various topics embraced in the Report, and for themselves cannot sufficiently express their gratitude to the Father of lights for leading them to harmonious results.

In relation to publishing upon the subject of slavery, the Committee recommend the adoption of the following resolutions, as marking out the line of discrimination between what the American Tract Society, according to its constitution, may and may not publish:

Resolved, 1. That the American Tract Society was established for a definite purpose, namely, 'to diffuse a knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ as the Redeemer of sinners, and to promote the interests of vital godliness and sound morality, by the circulation of religious tracts calculated to receive the approbation of all evangelical Christians.'

2. That this Society cannot therefore with propriety allow itself to be made a special organ of any one system of religious or moral reform, such as temperance, peace, anti-popery, anti-slavery, &c.; while within its proper sphere, its influence should sustain the cause of truth and righteousness in all their departments.

3. That in endeavoring to accomplish its high and holy mission, the Society should deal even-handedly, and bear impartial testimony against all forms of fundamental doctrinal error and practical immorality, prevailing in any and every part of our country.

4. That in the judgment of your Committee, the political aspects of slavery lie entirely without the proper sphere of this Society, and cannot be discussed in its publications; but that those moral duties which grow out of the existence of slavery, as well as those moral evils and vices which it is known to promote, and which are condemned in Scripture, and so much deplored by evangelical Christians, undoubtedly do fall within the province of this Society, and can and ought to be discussed in a fraternal and Christian spirit.

5. That whatever considerations in the past may have seemed to recommend to the Publishing Committee the course pursued in its revision of certain works, yet, in the future publican of books and tracts, no alteration or omission of the sentiments of any author should be made; but works not adapted to the design of the Society in their original form, or by a regular and impartial abridgment, should be wholly omitted. ***

The Committee recommend the adoption of the following resolutions:--

Resolved, 7. That we gratefully acknowledge the favor of Divine Providence in the blessing which has rested upon the American Tract Society, in its onward progress of success and prosperity, and the beneficent influence it has exerted upon our country and the world.

8. That we cordially recognize the fidelity and devotedness with which the interests of the Society have been superintended and conducted by the officers and Executive Committee, five of the present members having been among its original founders.

9. That with great confidence in the wisdom of

[[column 5]]

the Executive Committee, we anticipate that their action, in carrying out the principles contained in the previous resolutions, will be such as will tend to promote the widest and best usefulness of this Society throughout our whole country. [[signatures that follow each appear on their own line--breaks are at commas]] THEODORE FRELINGHUYSEN, THOMAS DE WITT, WILLIAM JESSUP, ALBERT BARNES, G. T. BEDELL, JOHN N. McLEOD, JOEL HAWES, RAY PALMER, S. S. SCHMUCKER, JAMES DONALDSON, FRANCIS WAYLAND, MARK HOPKINS, JOHN STONE, M. B. ANDERSON, GEORGE H. STUART. [[new paragraph]]
 New York, May 12, 1857.
[[line]]

CORRESPONDENCE

BETWEEN SENATOR SUMNER AND THE AMERICAN MERCHANTS IN PARIS.
 
Letter to Mr. Sumner.
[[line]]

Paris, April 28, 1857.

Dear Sir--The American merchants residing in Paris, desirous of expressing their high regard and admiration for your noble independence and distinguished services as a Senator of the United States, respectfully invite you to meet them at a public dinner, to be given at such a time during your sojourn in Paris as may be most convenient to yourself.

Though well aware that you are habitually accustomed to decline all similar requests, we earnestly hope you will yield to our wishes.

As citizens of the great Republic, representing many States, and all actively engaged in commercial life, we tender you this tribute as an evidence of our appreciation of your elevated patriotism, unbending integrity, and spotless honor.

With the highest esteem, we have the honor to be your friends and fellow-citizens,

John Munroe, B. G. Wainwright, Elliot C. Cowdin, Samuel P. Holmes, A. P. Montant, Thomas N. Dale, G. F. T. Reed, James W. Tucker, George T. Richards, A. K. P. Cooper, George Milne, C. L. Sharpsteen, Henry Woods, W. Endicott, Jr., John C. Martin, Walter H. Lewis, George L. Todd, David Lane, V. Mumford Moore, J. H. Deming, Jos. D. B. Curis, A. B. Strange.

To this invitation Mr. Sumner returned the following graceful and eloquent reply:
[[line]]

HOTEL, DE LA PAIX, Rue de la Paix,

April 30, 1857.

Gentlemen--I have been honored by your communication of the 28th of April, in which, after referring to my services as Senator of the United Sates, in language which is generous beyond the ordinary experience of political life, you are pleased to invite me, in the name of the American merchants residing in Paris, to a public dinner at such a time as may be most convenient to myself.

The voice of hospitality is pleasant in a strange land. But the hospitality which you offer me is enhanced by the character and number of those who unite in it, among whom I recognize well-known names, which are intimately associated with the commerce of my country in one of its most important outposts. 

But there is one aspect in which your invitation is especially grateful. It is this: If I have been able to do anything not unworthy of your approbation, it is because I have never failed, whether in majorities or minorities, against all obloquy and at every hazard, to uphold those principles of liberty which, just in proportion as they prevail under our Constitution, make us an example to the nations. And since my public course cannot be unknown to you, I am permitted to infer that the public testimony with which you now honor me is offered in some measure to those principles--dearer to me than any personal distinction--with which I am proud to know that my name is associated.

The invitation you send me, coming from such a source, couched in terms so flattering, and possessing such an import, presents a temptation difficult to resist. But I am admonished by the state of my health, which is yet far from its natural vigor, that I must not listen to it except to express my gratitude. In making this excuse, let me fortify myself by the confession that I left home mainly to with-[[several word obscured by wrinkle in paper]] particularly from all public speaking, in the assurance that by such withdrawal, accompanied by that relaxation which is found in a change of pursuit, my convalescence would be completed. The good physician under whose advice I have acted, would not admit that, by crossing the sea, I had been able at once to alter all conditions under which his advice was given.

But I cannot turn coldly from the opportunity you offer me. My heart overflows with the best wishes for yourselves individually, and also for the commerce which you conduct, mingled with the aspirations that your influence may always add to the welfare and just renown of our country. As American merchants at Paris, you are representatives of the United States on a foreign mission, without diplomatic salary or diplomatic privileges. But it belongs to the felicity of your position that what you do well for yourselves will be well for your country, and, more than any diplomacy, will contribute to strengthen the friendly ties of two powerful nations. Pardon the allusion when I add that you are the daily industrious workmen in that mighty loom, whose frame stands on the coasts of opposite continents; whose threads are Atlantic voyages; whose colors are the various enterprises and activities of a beneficent commerce, and whose well-wrought product is a radiant, speaking tissue--more beautiful to the mind's eye than any fabric of rarest French skill, more marvellous[sic] than any tapestry woven for kings--where every color mingles with every thread in completest harmony and on the grandest scale to display the triumphs and the blessings of peace.

Accept the assurance of the sincere regard with which I have the honor to be, gentlemen, your faithful servant and fellow-citizen,

CHARLES SUMNER

To John Munroe, B. G. Wainwright, Elliot C. Cowdin, Esquires, and others, American merchants at Paris.
[[double line break]]
The Liberator

NO UNION WITH SLAVEHOLDERS.

BOSTON, MAY 29, 1857.

ANNIVERSARY AT NEW YORK---MEETINGS OF PROGRESSIVE FRIENDS.

We have been absent from our post, during the last fortnight, attending a series of highly interesting meetings in furtherance of the cause of Freedom and Progress, held in the city of New York, and at Longwood, Chester county, Pennsylvania; and we have returned invigorated in health and refreshed in spirit by the journey.

What was done at the anniversary of the American Anti-Slavery Society, our readers are already pretty fully apprised. The holding of five public consecutive meetings, (including one by the City A.S. Society auxiliary to the American,) in one of the largest and most gorgeous halls in the country, and each of these numerously attended, is an unprecedented occurrence in the history of the Society, and indicates a change in popular feeling and sentiment, in the great metropolis, as cheering as it is extraordinary. No other Society, however influential or imposing, ventures to go beyond a single meeting--so little interest is felt in the proceedings, in consequence of the absence of all real earnestness and moral intrepidity. The religious anniversaries, so called, are ever respectably dull and common-place, and proceed with mechanical accuracy and stately formality. They give no uneasiness to 'the powers of darkness' or to 'the rulers of this world,' for they take all possible care not to come in conflict with public sentiment, and deal in barren generalities and pious platitudes which even the satanic press records with entire satisfaction. No one attends them with any expectation of being quickened in the soul, or enlightened as to the pressing duties of the age. They are under bonds to keep the peace; hence, our great American Babylon extends to them its annual welcome, in the most fraternal spirit. They do not deign to recognize the 

[[column 6]]

American Anti-Slavery Society (and this is to its credit) as worthy of public countenance or a friendly greeting; yet, where would be the remembrance of the woes, the sufferings, and paramount claims of the fettered and chattelized millions in our land, but for that Society, during Anniversary Week? The American Board of Commissioners' meeting is silent as to their fate; the American Tract Society bears no protest against their enslavement; the American Bible Society leaves them to grope their way down to hell, and is no more concerned on account of their deprivation of 'the word of life' than if they were so many cattle or swine; the American Home Missionary Society is in league with their oppressors; and the American Sunday School Union raises no voice of supplication in their behalf. All these bodies are intent on disseminating 'the gospel' and 'saving souls,' but in a manner equally acceptable to North and South, to time-serving formalists and unscrupulous demagogues, to President Buchanan and Captain Rynders, to the New York Express. Such a gospel is 'another gospel' than what Jesus inaugurated or Paul enforced; such soul-saving is but the augmentation of phariseeism and superstition.

But the pure leaven of Abolitionism is beginning to leaven the whole lump of society. Perhaps on no previous occasion have there been such resolutions adopted, or such speeches made, in respect to thoroughness of principle, boldness of action, and vigor of impeachment, as at the anti-slavery meetings aforesaid; and, throughout the entire proceedings, the audience gave the loudest approbation to the warmest utterances. A solitary hiss in behalf of the Union, and another in support of the Church, were all the opposition that was indicated on the occasion. These are 'signs of the times' as ominous to the enemies as they are cheering to the friends of unadulterated Abolitionism. At this rate, it will not be long at the North before the Union will have 'none so poor to do it reverence,' and the Church be left utterly indefensible.

Usually, Anniversary Week is very 'catching' as to the weather; but, this year, the two days occupied by the Anti-Slavery Society were bright and beautiful as could have been desired by the most fastidious. Not so fortunate, in this respect, was the Radical Political Abolition Society, which was held subsequently, and which had a driving rain-storm to look in the face. We were not present; but some of our friends who were, and the daily press generally, represent it to have been dull even to tediousness. William Goodell, Beriah Green, and Frederick Douglass were the speakers, whose united aim was to glorify the American Constitution as an anti-slavery instrument in spirit and design, though twenty-four millions of people who annually re-enact and administer the Constitution, laugh their interpretation to scorn. Such attempts to prove that a dead corpse is a living soul may serve a purpose, but they are as 'one beating the air.' An Anti-Slavery Constitution, forsooth!--in virtue of which, since it was put in operation, a slave oligarchy has been provided for in both Houses of Congress; the foreign slave trade was protected for a score of years; fugitive slaves are hunted in every part of the land; and slave insurrections have been repeatedly suppressed by the strong arm of the national government! All this the nation has uniformly recognized and sanctioned as legitimate; all this the national heart towards the colored race has been competent to enforce. What folly, then--what a waste of breath, what a perversion of historical verity, what an unmerited tribute to the spirit of the American people--to insist upon such a false interpretation after its uniform administration, in the same direction, from 1789 to 1857! From all metaphysical hairsplitters and verbal quibblers, deliver us! It is not a question about the possibility of making right wrong, or wrong right, by compact or by legal enactment; for it is not possible to nullify the eternal law by any contrivance whatsoever. But it is a question about the structure of the American Constitution--its recognized provisions and legal obligations--its relations to slavery from its adoption till now; and that question has been settled, beyond all serious doubt or controversy, by the life of the nation under it-- settled that if there ever was such a thing as 'a covenant with death and an agreement with hell,' it is the Constitution of the United States--settled that our fathers 'struck hands with thieves and consented with adulterers,' in an evil hour, taking counsel of their fears on the one hand, and of their selfishness on the other--settled that what was 'conceived in sin, and brought forth in iniquity,' ought to be summarily destroyed in the name of Justice and Humanity.

From New York, we proceeded to Chester County, Pennsylvania, to attend the annual convocation of the Progressive Friends, at Longwood, near old Kennett; and though our anticipations of a large and deeply interesting gathering were highly raised, they were greatly surpassed by the reality. We have never had more unalloyed satisfaction and exquisite enjoyment crowded into the same space of time. On 'first day,' (17th inst.) there must have been at least three thousand people on the ground; for it was estimated by various persons, that there were no less than seven hundred vehicles during the day gathered at the place of meeting! At noon, we counted between five and six hundred, and multitudes more came at afternoon services. They filled the roads in all directions, at a long distance, presenting an extraordinary spectacle, and evincing an interest in the meeting of the most earnest character. The utmost sobriety, the most perfect order, the most respectful attention prevailed throughout; we have never seen anything quite comparable to it. The old, the middle-aged, the young, were all there, blending into oneness of spirit, and animated by the noblest aspirations after Truth and Righteousness. It was like receiving a special benediction to look at their faces,--venerable, manly, womanly, or youthful, as the case might be. Not a fourth part of the vast throng could get into the neat and (for ordinary purposes) commodious meetinghouse; so, while the audience within doors were listening to the address, those without were addressed by others at the same time. The meetings continued during three days--the last two proving exceedingly cold and stormy, and necessarily diminishing the attendance. The best spirit prevailed throughout; the discussions were general, and marked by rare good sense and intelligent discrimination; and the testimonies recorded in relation to slavery, war, intemperance, the use of tobacco, woman's rights, &c., &c., of an uncompromising stamp. The proceedings will be soon officially laid before the public, and will speak for themselves. The hospitality of the friends at Longwood was severely tested, and as cheerfully borne. Our indebtedness to them is great, and, if never repaid, will at least ever be gratefully remembered.


ILLNESS OF MR. THOMPSON. In a letter recently received from Mr. F. W. Chesson, (son-in-law of GEORGE THOMPSON, Esq.,) dated London, April 22, 1857, we regret to find the following intelligence respecting the health of Mr. T., from whom we have not heard directly since his residence in India:--

'Mr. Thompson, I regret to say, has suffered much from the climate of India. During the hot season last year, he endured a very severe attack of bilious fever, which reduced him to a state of lamentable weakness, and compelled him, when he was able to move, to go to Ceylon to recruit his shattered health; and now I fear, from the tone of his recent letter, that he is about to enter again upon another period of sickness. But I hope that, by this time, he has become sufficiently acclimated to ward off the threatened attack. He has resided in Calcutta during the whole period of his absence, and while passing a comparatively quiet and secluded life, he has yet occasionally taken a welcome and prominent part in the literary gatherings of the Hindoo [sic] residents of the city and its suburbs.'
Please note that the language and terminology used in this collection reflects the context and culture of the time of its creation, and may include culturally sensitive information. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution, but is available in its original form to facilitate research. For questions or comments regarding sensitive content, access, and use related to this collection, please contact transcribe@si.edu.