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sembled, empowered the corporation of the city of Washington “to prescribe the terms and conditions upon which free negroes and mulattoes may reside in the city.' On this authority, in May, 1827, that corporation enacted that "every free negro or mu. latto, whether male or female, who may come to the city of Washington to reside, shall within thirty days, exhibit to the Mayor satisfactory evidence of his or her title to freedom to be recorded, and shall enter into bonds, with two freehold sureties, in the penalty of $500, conditioned on his or her good conduct, that they will not become chargeable to the corporation for the space of twelve months”the bond “to be renewed every year for THREE YEARS. On failure of this, he or she must depart, the city or be committed to the workhouse not exceeding twelve months in any ONE imprisonment." " And all negroes found residing in the city after the passage of this act who shall not be able to establish their title to freedom (except such as may be hired) shall be committed to the jail, as abscond. ing slaves."
By this law color is made a crime, which first robs citizens of their constitutional as well as in. alienable rights, and is then taken as evidence that they are slaves; and then to crown all, a large posse of officers, some of them in the pay of govern. ment, are “charged" with the execution of the laws, and “forfeit and pay for every neglect or failure a fine not exceeding twenty dollars.”-City Laws, p. 198.
The result is that free citizens are often arrested, plunged into prison, and then sold for their jail fees as slaves for life. · This nation affords no protection to fugitive
slaves. 8. Because no state in this Union affords protection to any slave who may escape to its limits, for
defence against the cruel hand of the southern oppressor. In every one of the “free states,” as they are called, fugitives from the “vilest slavery that ever saw the sun,” are liable to be seized by any ruthless white monster, and without a trial by jury, or any trial at all, to be dragged off to the South, and reduced again to a state of interminable bondage.
Slave states admitted into the Union. 9. Congress has admitted six slave states into the Union, without imposing any restriction upon the subject of slavery.
Colored foreigners. 10. The laws of the federal government prohibit foreigners who are colored, from becoming naturalized citizens of the United States.
United States' Mail. 11. The laws of the federal government prohi. bit colored Americans from carrying the United States' Mail.
Militia. 12. The same laws prohibit colored Americans from being enrolled in the miltia.
The entire nation responsible. 13. This nation must be considered a slave-holda ing nation, while Congress, composed of Senators and Representatives from all the States in the Union, possesses the power to abolish slavery in its capital, and refuses to exercise it.
The Congress shall have power to exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such district, (not exceeding ten miles square,) as may, by cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of government of the United States.- Constilution U. States, Art. 1. Sec. 8.
The honor and good faith of this nation are pledged
upon this subject. 14. This nation will be considered, by the civil. ized world, a slaveholding nation, while it refuses to redeem its pledge, made in the treaty of Ghent to do all in its power to “ abolish entirely" the traffic in slavery.-- See Chap. xx. page 145.
The following facts may be valuable in estimating the guilt of America in continuing the slavetrade after she became independent.
On the 20th of October, 1774, the delegates of 12 colonies being assembled in congress in Philadel. phia, to devise how they might "obtain redress of the grievances, which threaten destruction to the lives, liberty and property of his Majesty's subjects in North America,” approved and signed an agree. ment of “ Non-Importation, Non-Consumption and Non-Exportation," which they bound themselves and the people of the colonies which they represented, " under the sacred ties of virtue, honor and love of our country," to observe. In this solemn and extraordinary agreement, was the following remarkable clause :
2d Article. WE WILL NEITHER IMPORT NOR PURCHASE ANY SLAVE IMPORTED AFTER THE FIRST DAY OF DECEMBER NEXT, AFTER WHICH TIME WE WILL WHOLLY DISCONTINUE THE SLAVE TRADE, and will neither be concerned in it our. selves, nor will we hire our vessels, nor sell our commodities or manufactures to those who are concerned in it.
Enormous and disgraceful abuses tolerated by this
nation in its capital. The following facts are set forth in the preamble to some resolutions, introduced to the House of Re. presentatives, in 1829, by Mr. Miner, of Pa.
Whereas the laws in respect to slavery within the District have been almost entirely neglected; from which
neglect, for nearly 30 years, have grown numerous and gross corruptions.
Slave dealers gaining confidence from impunity, have made the seat of federal government their head quarters for carrying on the domestic slave trade.
The public prisons have been extensively used, (perverted from the purposes for which they were erected,) for carrying on ihe domestic slave trade.
Officers of the federal government have been employ. ed, and derive emoluments from carrying on the domestic slave trade.
Private and secret prisons exist in the District for carrying on the traffic in human beings.
The trade is not confined to those who are slaves for life; but persons having a limited time to serve, are bought by the slave dealers, and sent where redress is hopeless.
Others are kidnapped and hurried away before they can be rescued.
Instances of death, from the anguish of despair, exhibited in the District, mark the cruelty of this traffic.
Instances of maiming and suicide, executed or attempted, have been exhibited, growing out of this traffic within the District.
Free persons of color coming into the District, are liable to arrest, imprisonment, and sold into slavery for life, for jail fees, if unable, from ignorance, misfortune, or fraud, to prove their freedom.
Advertisements beginning, 'We will give cash for one hundred likely young negroes of both sexes, from eight to twenty-five years old,' contained in the public prints of the city, under the notice of Congress, indicate the openness and extent of the traffic.
Scenes of human beings exposed at pubic vendue are exhibited here, permitted by the laws of the general government.
A grand jury of the District has presented the slave trade as a grievance.
A writer in a public print in the District has set forth that to those who have never seen a spectacle of the kind (exhibited by the slave trade) no description can give an adequate idea of its horrors.'
To such an extent had this trade been carried in 1816, that a member of Congress from Virginia introduced a resolution in the House, ' That a committee be appointed to inquire into the existence of an inhuman and illegat traffic in slaves carried on in and through the District of Columbia, and report whether any, and what measures are necessary for putting a stop to the same.'
CHAPTER X VII.
REASONS FOR DISCUSSING THE SUBJECT
OF SLAVERY AT THE NORTH.
1. Because it is American slavery.
2. Because the North contributes its share towards its support.
(1.) Its money in building prisons in the District of Columbia, where slaves are kept.
(2.) Its representatives and senators in Congress who virtually vote for its continuance.
(3.) Its portion of men, christians and ministers of the gospel, who go to the South and become slaveholders.
3. We are obligated by the United States' laws to deliver up slaves who escape to us for refuge.
4. Because northern blood is liable to be spilt in case of insurrection at the South.
5. Because the slaveholding principle exists at. the North, as really as at the South. The continuance of the system is justified here by Christians and ministers, on the same ground, on which it is justified there, by the slaveholders themselves.
6. We discuss this subject at the North, because as long as slavery exists in this nation our own liberties are insecure. See the case of Dr. Crandall, a citizen of N. York, who was incarcerated in Wash