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may become probable by supernatural interference! The Almighty has no attribute which can take side with us in such a contest. But it is impossible to be temperate and to pursue this subject through the various considerations of policy, of morals, of history, natural and civil. We must be contented to hope they will force their way

into every one's mind. I think a change already perceptible, since the origin of the present revolution. The spirit of the master is abating, that of the slave is rising from the dust, his condition mollifying, the way I hope preparing, under the auspices of heaven, for a total emancipation, and that this is disposed, in the order of events, to be with the consent of the masters, rather than by their extirpation.-Notes on Virginia.

What an incomprehensible machine is man? Who can endure toil, famine, stripes, imprisonment, and death itself, in vindication of his own liberty, and the next moment be deaf to all those motives whose power supported him through his trial, and inflict on his fellow men a bondage, one hour of which is fraught with more misery than ages

of that which he rose in rebellion to oppose. But we must wait with patience the workings of an overruling Providence, and hope that that is preparing the deliverance of these our suffering brethren. When the measure of their tears shall be full—when their tears shall have involved heaven itself in darkness—doubtless a God of justice will awaken to their distress, and by diffusing a light and liberality among their oppressors, or, at length by his exterminating thunder manifest his attention to things of this world, and that they are not left to the guidance of blind fatality. lbid.

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PARIS, August 7, 1785. SIR, Your favor of July 2d came duly to hand. The concern you therein express as to the effect of your pamphlet in America, induces me to trouble you with some observations on that subject. From my acquaintance with that country, I think I am able to judge with some degree of certainty of the manner in which it will have been received. Southward of the Chesapeake, it will find but few readers concurring with it in sentiment on the subject of slavery. From the mouth to the head of the Chesapeake, the bulk of the people will approve it in theory, and it will find a respectable minority ready to adopt it in practice. A minority, which for weight and worth of character, preponderates against the greater number who have not the courage to divest their families of a property, which, however, keeps their consciences' uneasy. Northward of the Chesapeake, you may find here and there an opponent to your doctine, as you may find here and there a robber and a murderer; but in no greater number Jń that part of America there being but few slaves, they can easily disencumber themselves of them; and emancipation is put into such a train that, in a few years, there will be no slaves northward of Mary

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land. In Maryland, I do not find such a disposition to begin the redress of this enormity as in Virginia. This is the next state to which we may turn our eyes for the interesting spectacle of justice in conflict with avarice and oppression; a conflict wherein the sacred side is gaining daily recruits from the influx into office of young men grown and growing up: these have sucked in the principles of liberty, as it were with their mother's milk, and it is to them I look with anxiety to turn the fate of this question. Be not, therefore, discouraged what you have written will do a great deal of good; and could you still trouble yourself with our welfare, no man is more able to give aid to the laboring side.—The College of William and Mary, in Williamsburgh, since the remodelling of its plan, is the place where are collected together all the young men of Virginia, under preparation for public life. They are there undera the direction (most of them) of a Mr Wythe, one of the most virtuous of characters, and whose sentiments on the subject of slavery are unequivocal. I am satisfied, if you could resolve to address an exhortation to those young men, with all that eloquence of which you are master, that its influence on the future decision of this important question would be great, perhaps decisive. Thus, you see, that so far from thinking you have cause to repent of what you have done, I wish you to do more, and wish it on an assurance of its effect. The information I have received from America of the reception of your pamphlet in the different states, agrees with the expectation I had formed.




MONTICELLO, August 25, 1814. DEAR SIR, Your favor of July 31st was duly received, and was read with peculiar pleasure. The sentiments breathed through the whole, do honor to both the head and heart of the writer. Mine, on the subject of the slavery of negroes, have long since been in possession of the public, and time has only served to give them stronger root. The love of justice and the love of country plead equally the cause of these people; and it is a moral reproach to us that they should have pleaded it so long in vain, and should have produced not a single effort,—nay, I fear, not much serious willingness to relieve them and ourselves from our present condition of moral and political reprobation. From those of the former generation, who were in the fulness of age when I came into public life, which was while our controversy with England was on paper only, I soon saw that nothing was to be hoped. Nursed and educated in the daily habit of seeing the degraded condition, both bodily and mental, of those unfortunate beings, but not reflecting that that degradation was very much the work of themselves and their fathers, few minds have yet doubted but that they were as legitimate subjects of property as their horses or cattle. The quiet and monotonous course of colonial life had been disturbed

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by no alarm, and little reflection on the value of liberty. And when an alarm was taken at an enterprise of their own, it was not easy to carry them to the whole length of the principles which they invoked for themselves. In the first or second session of the legislature, after I became a member, I drew to this subject the attention of Colonel Bland, one of the oldest, ablest, and most respected members, and he undertook to move for certain moderate extensions of the protection of the laws to these people. I seconded his motion, and as a younger member, was more spared in the debate ; but he was denounced as an enemy to his country, and was treated with the greatest indecorum. From an early stage of our Revolution, other and more distant duties were assigned to me; so that from that time till my return from Europe in 1789, and, I may say, till I returned to reside at home in 1809, I had little opportunity of knowing the progress of public sentiment here on this subject. I had always hoped that the younger generation, receiving their early impressions after the flame of liberty. had been kindled in every breast, and had become as it were the vital spirit of every American, in the generous temperament of youth, analogous to the motion of their blood, and above the suggestions of avarice, would have sympathized with oppression wherever found, and proved their love of liberty beyond their own share of it. But my intercourse with them, since my return, has not been sufficient to ascertain that they have made towards this point the progress I had hoped.--Your solitary, but welcome voice, is the first which has brought this sound to my ear; and I have considered the general silence which prevails on this subject as indicating an apathy unfavorable to every hope. Yet the hour of emancipation is advancing in the march of time.

I am sensible of the partiality with which you have looked towards me as the person who should undertake this salutary but arduous work. But this, my dear sir, is like bidding old Priam to buckle the armor of Hector, “ trementibus aevo humeris, et inutile ferrum cingi.” No: I have overlived the generation with which mutual labors and perils begat mutual confidence and influence. This enterprise is for the

young; for those who can follow it up, and bear it through to its consummation. It shall have all my prayers; and these are the only weapons of an old man.

It is an encouraging observation, that no good measure was ever proposed which, if duly pursued, failed to prevail in the end. We have proof of this in the history of the endeavors in the British Parliament to suppress that very trade which brought this evil on us. And you will be supported by the religious precept,“ be not weary. in weil doing.” That your success may be as speedy and complete, as it will be honorable and immortal consolation to yourself, I shall as fervently and sincerely pray as I assure you of my great friendship and respect. - Ettin aynidlu



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„When we contemplate our abhorrence of that condition to which the arms and tyranny of Great Britain were exerted to reduce us; when we look back on the variety of dangers to which we have been exposed, and how miraculously, in many instances, our wants have been supplied, and our deliverances wrought, when even hope and human fortitude have become unequal to the conflict: we are unavoidably led to a serious and grateful sense of the manifold blessings which we have undeservedly received from the hand of that Being, from whom every good and perfect gift cometh. Impressed with these ideas, we conceive that it is our duty, and we rejoice that it is in our power, to extend a portion of that freedom to others which has been extended to us, and relieve from that state of thraldom, to which we ourselves were tyrannically doomed, and from which we have now every prospect of being delivered. It is not for us to inquire why, in the creation of mankind, the inhabitants of the different parts of the earth were distinguished by a difference of features and complexion. It is sufficient to know, that all are the work of an Almighty hand. We find in the distribution of the human species, that the most fertile, as well as the most barren parts of the earth, are inhabited by men of different complexions from ours, and from each other; from whence, we may reasonably, as well as religiously infer, that He, who placed them in their various situations, hath extended equally his care and protection to all, and that it becometh not us to counteract his mercies. e esteem it a peculiar blessing, granted to us, that we are this day enabled to add one more step to universal civilization, by removing, as much as possible, the sorrows of those who have lived in undeserved bondage, and from which, by the assumed authority of the kings of Great Britain, no effectual legal relief could be obtained. Weaned by a long course of experience from those narrow prejudices and partialities we had imbibed, we find our hearts enlarged with kindness and benevolence towards men of all conditions and nations; and we conceive ourselves, at this particular period, extraordinarily called upon by the blessing which we have received, to manifest the sincerity of our professions, and to give a substantial proof of our gratitude.

And whereas, the condition of those persons who have heretofore been denominated negro and mulatto slaves, has been attended with circumstances which not only deprived them of the common blessing they were by nature entitled to, but has cast them into the deepest afflictions, by an unnatural separation and sale of husband and wife from each other, and from their children; an injury, the greatness of which, can only be conceived by supposing that we were in the same unhappy case. In justice, therefore, to persons so unhappily circumstanced, and who, having no prospect before them, wherein they may rest their sorrows and their hopes, have no reasonable inducement to render the service to society which they otherwise might, and also, in

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grateful commemoration of our own happy deliverance from that state of unconditional submission, to which we were doomed by the tyranny of Britain. Be it enacted, That no child hereafter born, shall be a slave, &c.



Where Liberty dwells, there is my country. Two other societies were also established in Philadelphia about this period, founded on the principles of the most refined humanity : one " for alleviating the miseries of public prisons,and the other, for promoting the abolition of slavery, the relief of free negroes unlawfully held in bondage, and the improvement of the condition of the African race.—Of each of these, Dr. Franklin was president. He had as early as the year 1772, strongly expressed his abhorrence of the traffic in slaves, as appears by his letter of the 22d August, in that year, to Mr. Anthony Benezet, inserted in the first part of his Private Correspondence.

The following ADDRESS, with a Plan of the latter society, are supposed to have been drawn up by Dr. Franklin. An Address to the public, from the Pennsylvania Society for promot.

ing the Abolition of slavery, and the relief of free negroes unlawfully held in bondage.

It is with peculiar satisfaction, we assure the friends of humanity, that, in prosecuting the design of our association, our endeavors have proved successful, far beyond our most sanguine expectations.

Encouraged by this success, and by the daily progress of that luminous and benign spirit of liberty, which is diffusing itself throughout the world, and bumbly hoping for the continuance of the divine blessing on our labors, we have ventured to make an important addition to our original plan, and do, therefore, earnestly solicit the support and assistance of all, who can feel the tender emotions of sympathy and compassion, or relish the exalted pleasure of benefi


Slavery is such an atrocious debasement of human nature, that its very extirpation, if not performed with solicitous care, may sometimes open a source of serious evils.

The unhappy man, who has long been treated as a brute animal, too frequently sinks beneath the common standard of the human species. The galling chains that bind his body, do also fetter his intellectual faculties, and impair the social affections of his heart. Accustomed to move like a mere machine, by the will of a master, reflection is suspended; he has not the power of choice ; and reason and conscience have but little influence over his conduct, because he

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