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with Slavery. They must resist at all times, and be forearmed against the fatal influence. There is a story of the magnetic mountain which drew out the iron bolts of a ship, though at a great distance. Slavery is such a mountain, and too often draws out the iron bolts of representatives. There is another story of the Norwegian maelström, which, after sucking a ship into its vortex, whirls the victim round and round until it is dashed in pieces. Slavery is such a maelström. Representatives must continue safe and firm, notwithstanding magnetic mountain or maelström. But this can be only by following those principles for which Massachusetts is renowned.
A precious incident in the life of one whom our country has delighted to honor furnishes an example for imitation. When Napoleon, already at the pinnacle of military honor, but lusting for perpetuity of power, caused a vote to be taken on the question, whether he should be First Consul for life, Lafayette, at that time in retirement, and only recently, by his intervention, liberated from the dungeons of Olmütz, deliberately registered his No. Afterwards revisiting our shores, the scene of his youthful devotion to freedom, and receiving on all sides that beautiful homage of thanksgiving which is of itself an all-sufficient answer to the sarcasm that republics are ungrateful, here in Boston, this illustrious Frenchman listened with especial pride to the felicitation addressed to him as "the man who knew so well how to say No." Be this the example for Massachusetts; and may it be among her praises hereafter, that on this occasion she knew so well how to say NO!
EQUAL RIGHTS IN THE LECTURE-ROOM.
LETTER TO THE COMMITTEE OF THE NEW BEDFORD LYCEUM,
After accepting an invitation to lecture before the Lyceum at New Bedford, Mr. Sumner, learning that colored persons were denied membership and equal opportunities with white persons, refused to lecture, as appears in the following Letter, which was published in the papers of the time.
Shortly afterwards the obnoxious rule was rescinded, and Mr. Sumner lectured.
BOSTON, November 29, 1845. Y DEAR SIR, I have received your favor of November 24, asking me to appoint an evening in February or March to lecture before the New Bedford Lyceum, in pursuance of my promise.
On receiving the invitation of your Lyceum, I felt flattered, and, in undertaking to deliver a lecture at some time, to be appointed afterwards, I promised myself peculiar pleasure in an occasion of visiting a town which I had never seen, but whose refined hospitality and liberal spirit, as described to me, awakened my warmest interest.
Since then I have read in the public prints a protest, purporting to be by gentlemen well known to me by reputation, who are members of the Lyceum, and some of them part of its government, from which it appears that in former years tickets of admission were freely sold to colored persons, as to white persons, and that no
objection was made to them as members, but that at the present time tickets are refused to colored persons, and membership is also refused practically, though, by special vote recently adopted, they are allowed to attend the lectures without expense, provided they will sit in the north gallery.
From these facts it appears that the New Bedford Lyceum has undertaken within its jurisdiction to establish a distinction of Caste not recognized before.
One of the cardinal truths of religion and freedom is the Equality and Brotherhood of Man. In the sight of God and of all just institutions the white man can claim no precedence or exclusive privilege from his color. It is the accident of an accident that places a human soul beneath the dark shelter of an African countenance, rather than beneath our colder complexion. Nor can I conceive any application of the divine injunction, Do unto others as you would have them do unto you, more pertinent than to the man who founds a discrimination between his fellow-men on difference of skin.
It is well known that the prejudice of color, which is akin to the stern and selfish spirit that holds a fellow-man in slavery, is peculiar to our country. It does not exist in other civilized countries. In France colored youths at college have gained the highest honors, and been welcomed as if they were white. At the Law School there I have sat with them on the same benches. In Italy I have seen an Abyssinian mingling with monks, and there was no apparent suspicion on either side of anything open to question. All this was Christian so it seemed to me.
In lecturing before a Lyceum which has introduced the prejudice of color among its laws, and thus formal
ly reversed an injunction of highest morals and politics, I might seem to sanction what is most alien to my soul, and join in disobedience to that command which teaches that the children of earth are all of one blood. I cannot do this.
I beg, therefore, to be excused at present from appointing a day to lecture before your Lyceum; and I pray you to lay this letter before the Lyceum, that the ground may be understood on which I deem it my duty to decline the honor of appearing before them.
I hope you will pardon the frankness of this communication, and believe me, my dear Sir,
Very faithfully yours,
To the Chairman of the Committee of the New Bedford Lyceum.
PRISONS AND PRISON DISCIPLINE.*
ARTICLE FROM THE CHRISTIAN EXAMINER, JANUARY, 1846.
T is with a feeling of deference that we welcome pline." Her peculiar labors for humanity, and her renunciation of the refined repose which has such attractions for her sex, to go about doing good, enduring the hardships of travel, the vicissitudes of the chang
1. Remarks on Prisons and Prison Discipline in the United States. By D. L. DIX. Second Edition. Philadelphia. 1845. 8vo. pp. 108.
2. Nineteenth Annual Report of the Board of Managers of the Prison Discipline Society. Boston. 1844. 8vo. pp. 116.
3. Prisons and Prisoners. By JOSEPH ADSHEAD. With Illustrations. London. 1845. 8vo. pp. 320.
4. Report of the Surveyor-General of Prisons on the Construction, Ventilation, and Details of the Pentonville Prison. London. 1844. fol. pp. 30.
5. Revue Pénitentiaire des Institutions Préventives, sous la Direction de M. MOREAU-CHRISTOPHE. Tom. II. Paris. 1845. 8vo. pp. 659.
Par M. LEON FAUCHER.
6. Du Projet de Loi sur la Réforme des Prisons. Paris. 1844. 8vo.
7. Considérations sur la Reclusion Individuelle des Détenus. Par W. H. SURINGAR. Traduit du Hollandais sur la seconde Edition. Précédées d'une Préface, et suivies du Résumé de la Question Pénitentiaire, par L. M. MoREAU-CHRISTOPHE. Paris et Amsterdam. 1843. 8vo. pp. 131.
8. Nordamerikas Sittliche Zustände. (The Moral Condition of North America.) Von Dr. N. H. JULIUS. 2 Bände. Leipzig. 1839. 8vo.
9. Archiv des Criminalrechts, herausgegeben von den Professoren ABEGG, BIRNBAUM, Heffter, MitteRMAIER, WÄCHTER, ZACHARIÄ. (Archives of Criminal Law, edited by Professors ABEGG, etc.) Halle. 1843. 12mo. pp. 597.