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whipping now that used to be. I have been so long a time with my master, that I make free to say a word now and then. And when a servant does wrong, I venture to say, “Might it not be as well to change him and hire another, and not whip him?'and he rather takes that way now.” “Well, Thomas, patience and prayer will conquer. The Lord knows what is best, and will provide for you when you are free.”
Patient, ingenious, kind, and brave, perhaps he will never venture to throw off the disability attached to his complexion in the land of his birth, yet he has that about him which would make him an acquisition, as a citizen, to any country.
THE COLONISATION SOCIETY.
WHEN first we heard of this society in England it was hailed with joy, as a wise outlet for the oppressed, and a promising method of introducing civilisation to the western coast of Africa.
Those who had felt the slave-trade the most deeply as a wrong and impediment in every way to that coast, were those who gave to the agents of colonisation the most ardent welcome to England. But in a year or two the prospect was clouded.
The Maryland State Colonisation Society stated broadly at its seventh anniversary, that “abolition is a curse to those it pretends to benefit, and colonisation presents the only practicable plan by which the condition of the coloured population can be ameliorated.” And again, ." That this society hold colonisation to be the antagonist of abolition, and find the best proof of the importance of the former to the states where slavery exists, in the untiring efforts made by the latter to defeat and prostrate it.”* There was then no purpose of benefit to the * Resolutions at the public meeting held at Annapolis, Jan. 23, 1839.
whole coloured family. It seemed a scheme adopted by slave states to rid themselves of a few free negroes who were in too dangerous a proximity to their slaves. We had also hints of evil and turbulent slaves, who were an annoyance at home, receiving the gift of manumission merely that they might be got rid of. We were led to conjecture that several had been placed at Liberia against their own consent; and, as the slaveowners could never contemplate transporting three millions of people across the ocean, we were left in doubt whether the motive, held out to us, of improvement to Africa, and freedom to slaves, was the real one, or whether Liberia was not in fact a mere penal colony, or a safetyvalve, as a receptacle for those who could not be managed at home. The numbers sent were fewer than one would have expected from the active benevolence of Americans, who achieve great things when they are really moved, and never seem to fail in any good design for want of funds. In short, we required to investigate and to be reassured, before we dared heartily to rejoice in the plans of the society.
After many and anxious inquiries, I am happy to come to the conclusion that the motives of the Colonisation Society are purely philanthropic. It has steadily adhered to its one object—that of sending, with their own consent, people of colour to Africa; and out of the accomplishment of this object is rising the good prognosticated. One free colony after another is springing up on those deadly shores, once haunted by the kidnapper and the man-hunter. And the traffickers in human flesh, so stupidly debased, who steeped their souls in horrors, and spent their days in watching and plotting, and their nights in rapine and cruelty, are learning that their fertile soil can enrich them by its varied and bountiful productions, while they possess just rights themselves, and allow them also to their fellow-men.
Although the idea of removing the African race from the American continent by means of Liberia is like baling out the ocean with a bucket, yet the thriving republic, with its rising seaport towns, forms a suitable home for many of them, and exhibits a fine pattern to the uncivilised nations around them. Monrovia was the first settlement, and is the seat of government. But since then Edina is added as a seaport, and, with the new colony of Maryland at Cape Palmas, is included under the general, name of Liberia. Thus the Colonisation Society has an average of forty miles inland, and a coast line of three hundred and fifty miles, secured from the abominable traffic in manand fourteen thousand square miles of territory, protected and ready for the free and peaceful labours of the husbandman.
The Rev. R. R. Gurley, who was sent by government to obtain information in 1850, reports “ the mighty effects wrought on the intellects, hopes, and purposes of the authorities and people of Liberia by the freedom which has ever been theirs upon these
shores, and the high position they have now taken of national independence. Some of the most distinguished men of the republic are among those who went thither in childhood, have received their entire education in its schools, and bear in their manners, their whole deportment, and upon their very aspect, the signs of a just self-respect, of subdued passions, of virtuous resolutions, and of a mature and well-disciplined judgment."*
The laws of Liberia against the slave-trade are full and explicit:-“1. No vessel of their republic is permitted to have intercourse with slave-ships, at sea or elsewhere. 2. No citizen of their republic can be permitted to act as agent for any person engaged in the slave-trade, under penalty of being six months bound to hard labour in irons—no one living there shall enter into the employ of any slavedealer. 3. No vessel engaged in or having connection with the slave-trade shall enter the ports of the republic, and no foreigner residing within its jurisdiction shall have any connexion with that trade." In short, the laws exhibit a determined resolve to keep such pollution far from their rising nation, and furnish a cheering prospect that, by its aid, that baleful source of crime and cruelty will finally be extinguished.
The founders of the society, Samuel J. Mills and Dr Finley, are men whose names are held in honour
* Report to the Senate through the Secretary of State, Daniel Webster. Washington, September 14, 1850.