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support of which he shall require no one of them to make a sacrifice of opinion or principle. Its responsibility has been assumed, after the most mature deliberation and reflection, as necessary to preserve the morals of the people, the freedom of the press and the purity of the elective franchise, without which all will unite in saying that the blood and treasure expended by our forefathers in the establishment of our happy system of government will have been vain and fruitless. Under these convictions, he feels that a measure so important to the American people cannot be commenced too soon; and he therefore names the first day of October next, as a period proper for the change of the deposites, or sooner, provided the necessary arrangements with the state banks can be made.
CONSTITUTION OF THE AMERICAN Anti-SLAVERY
This organization was an outgrowth of the New York City Anti-Slavery Society, and was formed at a convention in Philadelphia, December 4, 1833, at which both a constitution and a declaration of sentiments (the latter by William Lloyd Garrison) were adopted. Extracts from text in “Platform of the American Anti-Slavery Society and Its Auxiliaries.” New York: The Society, 1860, pp. 3-4. (See page 76.)
Whereas the Most High God “hath made of one blood all nations of men to dwell on all the face of the earth,” and hath commanded them to love their neighbors as themselves; and whereas, our National Existence is based upon this principle, as recognized in the Declaration of Independence, “that all mankind are created equal, and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”; and whereas, after the lapse of nearly sixty years, since the faith and honor of the American people were pledged to this avowal, before Almighty God and the World, nearly one-sixth part of the nation are held in bondage by their fellow-citizens; and whereas, Slavery is contrary to the principles of natural justice, of our republican form of government, and of the Christian religion, and is destructive of the prosperity of the country, while it is endangering the peace, union, and liberties of the States; and whereas
BENJAMIN LUNDY (Said to have been the first to make anti-slavery addresses. From 1815 until his death in 1839 he continued to speak and to publish journals and pamphlets against slavery)
we believe it the duty and interest of the masters immediately to emancipate their slaves, and that no scheme of expatriation, either voluntary or by compulsion, can remove this great and increasing evil; and whereas, we believe that it is practicable, by appeals to the consciences, hearts, and interests of the people, to awaken a public sentiment throughout the nation that will be opposed to the continuance of Slavery in any part of the Republic, and by effecting the speedy abolition of Slavery, prevent a general convulsion; and whereas, we believe we owe it to the oppressed, to our fellow-citizens who hold slaves, to our whole country, to posterity, and to God, to do all that is lawfully in our power to bring about the extinction of Slavery, we do hereby agree, with a prayerful reliance on the Divine aid, to form ourselves into a society, to be governed by the following Constitution:
ARTICLE I.—This Society shall be called the AMERICAN ANTI-SLAVERY SOCIETY.
ARTICLE II.—The objects of this Society are the entire abolition of Slavery in the United States. While it admits that each State, in which Slavery exists, has, by the Constitution of the United States, the exclusive right to legislate in regard to its abolition in said State, it shall aim to convince all our fellow-citizens, by arguments addressed to their understandings and consciences, that Slaveholding is a heinous crime in the sight of God, and that the duty, safety, and best interests of all concerned, require its immediate abandonment, withcut expatriation. The Society will also endeavor, in a constitutional way, to influence Congress to put an end to the domestic Slave trade, and to abolish Slavery in all those portions of our common country which come under its control, especially in the District of Columbia,-and likewise to prevent the extension of it to any State that may be hereafter admitted to the Union. Article III.—This Society shall aim to elevate the