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Reconstruction Meeting in Raleigh !
FIBST DAYS PROCEEDINGS ! ! The Loyal Republicans of the State of both Races in Council It! HARMONY AND ENTHUSIASM ! ! ! ! The First Step to " the Music of the Union"!!!!! The hour ot 12 M., Wednesday, the 27tli inst., having arrived, the delegates were sum moned to attend at the Common's Hall in the Capitol building by the ringing of the bell. The indefatigable Secretary to the pre vious meeting, Mr. W. Ii. Richardson, hav ing obtained permission to use the Hall, which by his efforts was also tastefully deco rated with national banners, draped upon the galleries and over the Speaker's stand, above which place was extended this motto, in large letters, "UNION, LIBERTY, EQUALITY." Among these banners was that of the 1st N. C. Union Volunteers, which had been borne triumphantly throughout fourteen bat tles, and now reposes in peace and beauty, an honored relic of the past, dear to the heart of every true North-Carolinian. The galleries soon became densely packed with colored people, who maintained the most perfect order and decorum during the whole proceedings, and who evinced unusual interest in the deliberations of the honorable body. The lobbies beneath were also crow tied to their utmost capacity by both whites and blacks, who pressed far into the main aisle, seeking positions tor the purpose of hearing what was said and seeing what was to be done. The delegates having been seated for the most part, many being compelled to stand for lack of chairs ; Mr. C: L. Harris, of Rutherford, as Chair man of the meeting of loyal members of the Legislature, called them to order, when lion. Alfred Dockery, of Richmond, was nominated for temporary chairman, and unanimously elected. Hon. R. P. Dick, of Guilford, (white,') and J. II. Harris, (colored) of Wake, were delega ted to conduct the Speaker to the Chair, which being done, Mr. Dockery proceeded to address the Convention in his usual forcible and eloquent manner, as follows : He said although he would not make a set speech as presiding officer of this meeting, he begged leave to submit a few remarks. We recognize, gentlemen, in this assembly a large number of the most intelligent and trusty Union men of the State, coming to gether from the sea-shore to the mountains for the purpose of consulting as to the most efficient method of co-operating with the general government, in building up a loyal State government here, and checking the downward course of events. We desire to restore North-Carolina to her full relations to her sisters in the American Union. Let others sneer and ridicule as they may. AVe regard the movement as patriotic in the highest degree (applause.) To be a member of such a body, convened for such a purpose, is an honor to any man. To be selected as its presiding officer is a distinguished honor, gentlemen, for which I tender to you my highest sppprcciation (ap plause.) After four years of war, after the most gi gantic rebellion known in the annals of man kind, the rebel armies surrendered to the victorious forces of the general government. As a consequence the legitimate and consti tutional authorities of that government de clared all civil government in the rebel States suspended. The conquerors were in full pow er. They remain so, and now, although we have had sessions of the Legislature anil Con vention, we find all the work of reconstruc tion, upon our part at least, yet to be done. The important question now is, how shall we do it ? Look to the recent acts of Con gress. They arc our text-books, the guides . to lead us back into the Union. Carry out their wholesome requirements, gentlemen, in letter and spirit, not merely assubmissionists but acceptors in good faith, by passing laws just and proper in every particular ; let this be done, and the work is accomplished. When the new constitution is in formation, great care should be taken to guard it against insidious attacks from within and without. No door, which can be closed against such assaults, should be left open. Otherwise the disaffected and evil-disposed will enter the citadel. Without any desire to excite or agitate parties at present, no one will deny that we have been ruined by party combinations in the past. To prevent the recurrence of sim ilar disastrous events, let us sustain the acts of Congress; and keep a sufficient num ber of the leaders of the rebellion out of of fice to do so successfully. For, gentlemen, the experience of the past and present warns us against reposing further con fidence in them. Let us beware then, for i the reconstruction of our State government I is not intended for this generation alone, but i for all time to come 1 And when we see ev idences of genuine repentance, and they bring forth the true fruits of that repentance by word and deed, we will all unite to fling the mantle of the past over their errors, but not until then. The work which we have to perform, gen tlemen, is of great magnitude. But were it possible to communicate with the dead, the spirit of Washington would applaud it, and encourage us to persevere. Then let our mot to fe " no North, no South, no East, no West!" (applause,) and that other sentiment from the lips of a great and patriotic states man, ' Liberty and Union, now and forever one, and inseparable J" (Prolonged ap plause.) On motion of W. W. Holden, Dr. H. J. Menninger of Craven, (white) and J. S. Leary, of Cumberland, (col.,) were.chosen temporary Secretaries. The roll was then called and the follow ing delegates answered to their names: Alamance. J)r. J. W. McCauley, J. B. HcMurray, J. W. Hardin, W. A. .Dunn, (whites,) aud Wyatt Outlaw, Guilford Sel lars, Henderson Hassell, Charles Moore, (col ored.) Beaufort. D. M. Carter, S. T. Carxow, (whites.) Greene. Win. Conner, D. E. Best, (coL) Guilford. R. P. Dick, J.Hiatt, (whites;) H. Unthanks, L. Gibson, M. Alston, (col.) Halifax.. Jas. A. Reid, N. B. Martin, (whites.) Harnett. J. M. Turner, Aaron Thomas, J. a. Harrington, (whites.) Ilenderton. A. H. Jones, (white.) Hertford. L. W. Boofl. C. Moore, (col.) Iredell. H. Verner, (white.) Johnston. B. R. Hinnant, Dr. J. T. Leach, (whites.) Jonet. Dr. J. T. Leach proxy. Lenoir. R. W. King, (white.) Martin. S. W. Watts, J. J. Martin, (whites.) Mecklenburg, E. Fullings, (white,) Rich. Smith, J. Davidson, (colored.) Montgomery. A- Jordan, (white.) Moore. W. B. Richardson, A. Walden, J. Barrett, (whites;) M. McCloud, B. Rieves, (colored.) Nah. A. B. Baines, (white.) New Hanover. Maj. J. L. Rhodes, J. H. Neff. (whites;) G. W. Price, G. P. Romke, E. Miller, colored. Bertie. Chas. Harrell, Blount Pew, col. Cabarrus. W. M. Coleman, white. Carteret. Dr. M. F. Arendell, J. C. Cod ner, whites; Francis Gibble, colored. Caswell. Turner Patilo, colored. Chatham Silas Burns, Wm. T. Gunter, whites ; T. Taylor, R. Ramsay, Henry Smith, colored. Craven. C. R. Thomas, D. Heaton, H. J. Menninger, whites ; Jno. R. Goode, G. R. Green, C. J. Brown, colored. Cumberland. E. L. Pemberton, J. R. Lee, whites ; J. W. Hood, James Bowman, J. S. Leary, colored. J Davidson. W. F. Henderson, n Adams, N. Chandler, George Riley, whites and Richard Heir, colored. - Davie. Jesse Green, white. Edgecombe. W. II. Knapp, John Norfket, white. Forsyth. E. B. Teague, Dr. J. L. Johnson, whites. Franklin. John E. Thomas, white. Gaston. D. A. Jenkins, Dr. W. Sloan, whites; and James Rhyne, colored. Granville. John Peed, Dr. E. Grissom, (whites.) Northampton. Jno. B. Odom, (white) ; J. II. Longford, B. H. Jones, (colored.) Orange. 11. J. W. McCau'.ey, (white,) Caldwell Wilson, (colored.) Pasquotanl. C. C. Pool, (white.) Person. Br. C. H. Jordan, (white.) Polk. N. B. Hampton, (white.) Randolph. J. Ashworth, M. Bobbins, (white) ; Thos. Potter, (colored.) It chmond. Alfred Dockery, Dr. Hadle.C, (w.iites.) Rowan. S. II. Wilcy.J. J. Helper, (whites.) Robeson. Jas. Sinclair, (white.) Rockingham. Thos. Settle, (white.) Rutherford. G. W. Logan, N. Scoggin. C. L. Harris, (whites) ; V. Michaelcolored.) Slanly. L. C. Morton, (white.) Utokes. A. II. Joyce, W. Estes, J. J. Mar tin, (whites.) Surry. Saml. Forkncr, (white.) Wake.W. W. Holden, W. R. Richard son, J. C. L. Harris, J. F. Taylor, W. D. Jones, Jefferson Fisher, R. K. Ferrell, J. W. Holden, B. S. D. Williams, Jacob Sorrel!, C. J. Rogers. David Peed, A. L. Davis, B. T. Strickland, J. J. Overby, (whites) ; and Jas. Henry Harris, G. W. Brodie, W. Warwick, J. R. Caswell, II. B. Lockett, F. S. Pierson, Jr., Ransom Avery, (colored.) Washington. J. A. Melson, (white.) Warren. D. R. Goodloe, (white) ; Wm. Cawthorne, John Hyman, A. Berges, col. Wayne. Jno. Robinson, T. A. Deans, C. II. llrogden, whites ; J.E. OTIara, col. Wilkes. C. J. Cowlet, Capt. J. Q. A. Bry an, whites. Wilson. G. W. Stanton white. Yadkin. T. M. Vestal, white. Yancey. C. L. Harris, proxy. Mitchell. C. L. Harris, do. Washington City, D. C. Dr. R. J. Powell, B. S. Hedrick, whites. When the name ot C. J. Rogers, of Wake, was presented Mr. Jas. F. Taylor objected. He saiil that he did so purely on political grounds. It was well known that Mr. Rog ers had opposed the Howard Amendment, and that he had not acted with the loyal members of the Legislature of this State of which he was a member. Sir. Taylor held that there must be some line of distinction drawn, and according to his view of the matter, Mr. Rogers did not come up to the standard ho could not pass muster in this body. Mr. Rogers replied that his opposition to the IToward or Constitutional Amendment could not be denied, but he had said that he opposed that amendment because it was not a finality. Had it been a finality laid down by Congress, he should have supported it. Mr. Rogers said he would submit to the ac tion of the Convention. Hon. D. R. Goodloe said that he did not think this was a time to repel any one, who desired to come forward and aid in the work of reconstruction. Let us all comply with the terms of Congress in good faith, without increasing enmity or cherishing a prescript ive feeling. Mr. Grissom, of Granville, defended Mr. Rogers. That gentleman, said he, stood firm in the dark hours of the rebellion, and the memory of his good service then should not now be forgotten. Mr. Taylor said that if Mr. Rogers would give his assent publicly to to the platform and resolutions of this Convention to be laid down, and avow himself a member of the great Republican party, he would withdraw his objections. Mr. Rogers eompljing, the objections were withdrawn, when On motion of Mr. Grissom a committee on credentials was raised, consisting of Messrs. Grissom, Cowles, Henderson, and Jenkins, whites ; and Messrs. Harris, Goode, and Smith, colored. The committee retired, when Mr. Dick, of Guilford, moved that a com mittee ofeight tour of each race be ap pointed to designate officers for the perma nent organization of the Convention. Mr. Watts, of Martin, said that the com mittee on credentials should report before a permanent organization was effected, or steps taken in that direction. He did not know whether objection would be made to his presence or not, or to any one else ; but he could say for himself that he was a true loy alist, oue that had come up out ot much tribulation. But lie desired this committee to report so that all might pass muster. If any one doubted him, he could refer to gen tlemen on this floor, who would vouch for him, that he stood by the flag of his coun try and defended it against domestic traitors from the beginning of the rebellion to the present hour. Mr. Settle thought that Mr. Watts had mis apprehended the intention of the committee. It was not to raise further objection to any one, but to consider the question involved iu the case of Mr. Rogers. Mr. Dick regretted that such an issue was before the Convention. He was here with out credentials from any meeting of his fel low-citizens, but he was a Union man, and lie presumed that was enough. (Applause.) He came here as such to aid in the work of restoration, and also to be present a partici pant in this Convention when it should sol emnly resolve to fling to the breeze the lustrous banner of the Republican party, resolved to conquer or die beneath its folds 1 (Great ap plause.) What inquisitorial committee should now be called upon to sit upon the fitness of delegates, come hither for that patriotic pur pose ? Let us all here pledge ourselves to stand by the Union of the States, and its great defender, the Republican party of the Nation, and that was enough (applause) such credentials could pass muster in this meeting victoriously. (Applause.) Dr. J. T. Leach, of Johnston, concurred with Mr. Dick. He desired to act from the present, on the basis of Union, Liberty, Eqtjalitt, (cheers,) which motto was written above the speaker's stand ; and we might add to that, he said, that other memorable senti ment, " the Union, the constitution and the enforcement of the laws !" (Great applause.) We came here to harmonize and start anew. Let every true patriot, without regard to race or color, assist in this work of restoration. He wished to reach the promised land of rest, where peace, prosperity and plenty would again smile upoo us. In order to do this we must have one purpose in view, strict com pliance with the lavs of Congress. There is no use to cavil about terms. They have been laid down we must accept them he advis ed all to do so as cheerfully as he did, and the labors would be light .in comparison to past sufferings, and the future measures of Congress which threaten the Southern peo ple. Should we go back, he for one would find a hearty welcome he knew in his father's home by the Potomac. ' There wouZd be re joicing when the prodigal returned, ancl the fatted calf should be killed. He could see nothing humiliating in these terms, mate than in many other things in the past now almost forgotten. Indeed, our sins have been great in comparison to their punishment. The motion of Mr. Dick was adopted after some further remarks by Messrs. Kino-, Carter and Goodloe. The President then appointed Messrs. t A. Jenkins, John Robinson, H. Adams, E. B. Teague, whites ; and G. W. Brodie, H. B. Lockett, Jas. Bowman and John Hyman, colored the committee on permanent or ganization. Mr. Grissom from the committee on cred entials reported that all the delegates present were duly qualified. Mr. Goodloe said he thought it injudicious to complicate the work of reconstruction by attempting now to form permanent political parties. He was a Republican, ami had been from the organization of that party in 1855. He had assisted in the formation of the first Republican Association in the City of Wash-, ington ; and he was now a member of the National Union Committee. But he was not willing to repel any man from our ranks who was willing to accept in good faith the conditions of reconstruction, by requiring him to adopt a party name which had here tofore been so odious to the Southern people, and to the great majority of this Convention. Let us inscribe on our party banners the noble words over your head, Mr. Chairmnn, Liberty, Union, Equality, and welcome all who are willing to join with us, without re gard to past records. This is all that the act of Congress requires, and it is all that it is needed. Mr. Settle said that the Convention fully appreciated the suggestions of the gentle man, but we were now Republicans, and for the future that party name was the choice of the loyalists of North-Carolina, without regard to race or color. Mr. Hedrick, of Washington City, said that he agreed with Mr. Goodloe. He fa vored the name of Union party, and said that was its proper designation in the Northern States. There had been a Repub lican party of which he was a member before the war, but upon the opening of the rebel lion that name had been dropped and the word Union substituted. The word Union is still used, said Mr. II., and he fa vored its adoption by this Convention. There were only two parties, ho continued, in this country at present, the Union and the Democratic or Copperhead faction. Mr. Goodloe begged to interrupt the gen tleman in order to give the reason of his statement, that during the war the name Republican was in many States dropped, and the name Union substituted. It was because the Republicans felt their inability to carry those States without the aid of the war Democrats; and it was therefore found expedient to leave the name Republican in abeyance, and enter upon the canvass under the common name of Unionists. But before the election took place the Democrats were willing to be called Republicans and black Republicans. Mr. Hedrick said that he must still insist that the Union party existed in name and organization. Therefore, it was the proper name. It was used here, and all could act under it. He wished all the people to do something in the work of reconstruction will ingly ami according to their ability. But if any were disposed to be balky horses, he desired to tell them that they must get out of the way, for the wagon was going on to its destination. Mr. Sloan thought the discussion out of order. He said that the name Republican was satisfactory to himself and this Conven tion he hoped, cheers for the member well know that that party preserved the country from destruction. Continued applause. Mr. Jenkins, chairman of the committee on permanent organization, reported that the committee had agreed upon officers for the Convention and asked leave to report, which being granted, He announced the name of Hon. A. n. Jones, of Henderson county, for President, and Messrs. D. Heaton, of Craven, and Dr. O. P. Hadley, of Richmond, Vice Presidents on the part of the whites ; and Messrs. J. II. Harris, of Wake, and J. R. Goode. of Craven, Vice Presidents on the part of the colored people; and Dr. II. J. Menninger. of Craven, white and J. E. O'Hara, of Wayne, colored for Secretaries. The report was unanimously adopted, when Messrs. Sloan of Gaston and Harris of Wake, were appointed to conduct the Presi dent to the Chair. The other officers being seated, Mr. Jones addressed the Convention as follows : My Republican Fei.low-Citizens: We have now arrived at the period from which we can see the end of the mightiest rebellion whivh the civilized world lias ever known. North-Carolina lias, lv her own voluntary action, debarred her self of the benefits of a benign government, under which she had lived for eighty years, and now lor the first time the general government has seen tit to allow tier the opportunity again to unite hcrselt in all her full relations that her insane folly destroyed the 20th day of May, 1MU. To-day we have met together for the first time, irrespective of races, for the purpose of consult ing and conferring one with the other, as to the most speedy and prompt mode to carry out theacts of Congress towards a reconstruction. By the act of the 3'Jth Congress, passed on the 2nd day of March, and by a subsequent supplemental net of the 40th Congress, passed on the tfird of March, the loyal people of North-Carolina, if they so elect, can become a part of the national sister hood of States, comprising the great American Republic. Let us cordially respond to this call. Let us unite our hearts and hands in assisting and abetting those who have been appointed to con trol and supervise the accomplishment of this happy consummation. (Applause.) Thank God ! the sun of a brighter day has burst through the thunder clouds ot war that has deluged our com.try in fratricidal blood. The rays of that sun now'gild the Star-Spangled Banner of freedom throughout this" broad land. Thank God ! that every American citizen can now exclaim, that he belongs to but one glorious and united country that but one banner floats in the breeze from tiie Atlantic to the Pacific from the mighty lakes of the North to the suuny shores of the Mexican gulf. (Applause.) Mr. Settle moved that a committee of twenty be appointed by the President, ten of each race, to draft resolutions, and to whom should be referred all matters pertain ing to reconstruction, after being read, with out debate. Mr. Chapin, ot Guilford, said that he was opposed to this gag-law. He desired free dom of speech upon all occasions and sub jects brought before this Convention. Mr. Sloan explained that his motion gagged no one, but was ' intended for the acceleration of public business. Unless some system was adopted, we might spend our most precious time on irrelevant matters. As for himself, were the attempt made here and carried out to seal any man's lips, white or black, he would take his hat anl leave the hall. Mr. Chapin said that he deemed it his duty to express the opinion that the occupa tion of this Convention was gone, the passage of the supplementary bill having superseded all necessity for action on the part of the people towards restoration. We had noth ing to do with, parties or platforms. Ten or fifteen gentlemen about Raleigh might get together and call a Convention, but did it represent the people ? He entered his pro test against further proceedings in that di rection. Mr. Settle replied, saying that if we can here put forward a platform on which all can unite, he was in favor of doing so. It was no matter how we came together we are here from all parts of the State. And we are here also trying to form a party to reconstruct the Union. It was a patriotic work, worthy of our earnest endeavors, and ho trusted that no one was disposed to re tard the effort. Mr. Logan said that a difference having arisen as to what should be done by this Convention, he would explain the reasons that actuated the callers thereof, of whom he vfis one. It was called to perfect a plan to reorganize the State government, under the Sherman bill to do all that was necessary in that direction. Fortunately the passage of the supplemental bill has relieved ns of the preparation of tha machinery of recon struction. But -we af bound to act under that supplemental bill, and we are here to organize for that puq)ose. : The motion of Mr. Settle was adopted without further debate. Mr. Samuel Wilson was elected Door keeper. Dr. C. H. Jordan, of Person, said there were members here with resolutions and propositions aside from the matter of recon struction, and ho hoped a committee would be raised to consider such things. The President then announced the follow ing gentlemen a committee on resolutions, &c, to wit : Messrs. Thos. Settle, B. S. Hed rick, D. M. Carter, R. P. Dick, E. Grissom, C. L. Harris, Alfred Dockery, C. R. Thomas, J. W. Holden, John B. Odom, white, and Messrs. Jas. Bowman, J. S. Leary, J. W. Hood, G. W. Brodie, W. M. Cawthorn, E. Miller, J. R. Caswell, II. B. Lockett, W. R. Smith aud II. Unthanks, colored. On motion it was ordered that in the offi cial written proceedings of this Convention hereafter no distinction of color should be known. On motion of Dr. R. J. Powell, the Presi dent was requested to make arrangements to have the deliberations of this Convention opened with prayer. The parliamentary rules in usage by the House of Commons were then adopted for the government of this body. The Convention then adjourned until 7 o'clock, P. M. EVENING SESSION. The Convention was called to order pur suant to adjournment, the President occupy ing the Chair. Prayer by Rev. Mr. nood, colored dele gate from Cumberland. The minutes of the morning session were read and approved. Mr. C. L. Harris presented the proceed ings of a Union meeting in Yancey County, whereat he was appointed proxy for that County. His name was ordered to be so enrolled. The names of several delegates, included in the above list, were presented and ac cepted. A communication from Mr. A. W. Tour gee, Editor of the Greensboro' Register, was read, expressing regret at his unavoidable absence, but also setting forth his reasons for not approving of the assembling of this Convention or transaction of business by it as constituted. Mr. Settle offered the following letter from W. Morgan Powell, Esq., which was ordered to be read : " Gkove Hilj., Warren County, N. C, March 20th, 1S07. To the Loyal Union citizens of the State to assemble in Balciyh on the 27th instant. I regret very much that circumstances render it inconvenient lor me to meet you, on the day named, to consult in regard to the best mode of reconstruction ; but having the utmost coutidence in any decision that yon may make, therefore, I, as a member of your body, will cheerfully concur with you in whatever it liiay be. I have ever been an avowed Union man, from the commencement of the rebellion up to this time, and expressed myself to at nil times. And I cannot say that there was another open Union man in this county Warren. It was with dilli culty that one could escape with his life and ex press himself in favor of the Union, or for Holden and the Maiultird durinr the rebellion. But I did both all the time, aud was threatened with mob law and violence in various ways in and out of the county (hanging, &c.) I opposed seces sion in every way I could, but it cost me fifty thousand dollars. So much lor secession. With the highest regards, etc. WM. MORGAN POWELL." The following letter from Tod R. Caldwell, Esq., was also read : " Morgamos, N. C, 22d March, 1807. COL.. C. L. llAKltIS My Dear Sir : I had hoped that it would be possible for me to meet my friends in Raleigh on the :27th instant, but the condition of uiy wounds, of which I apprised you some weeks siuce, pre vents my attendance. I beg, however, to assure our friends through you that though absent in person 1 will be "present with them in spirit. I trust your conference will redound to the lasting advantage of onr good old mother, and have the effect of speedily restoring us to our lost estate in the Union, and that such measures will be de vised ns will forever prevent those persons, who sought to destroy the best government ever vouchsafed by God toman, from again participat ing iu the management of our political affairs, until they shall have heartily repented of their sins, turned from the error of their ways and given unmistakable evidence of a clongc of heart and determination to demean themselves us loyal men for the future. To bring about results so desir able is worthy of the best efforts of our best men, and I here pledge my feeble aid in the laudable enterprise Hoping that your gathering may be large, fraternal and harmonious, in all things, I subscribe myself your hearty co-laborer in a good cause, TOD R. CALDWELL." After these various communications were read, Mr. W. F. Henderson, of Davidson, proceeded to address the Convention. He said that it had assembled to take into consideration the condition of the country. Let it mature everything and proceed with deliberation. If it complies with the act of Congress in all respects, no difficulties could intervene to hinder the return of the State. There are but two parties in this country, said he, the Republican party, and the anti Republican. The former is the friend of the government, the latter is against it. Let us act with the Republican party with the friends of the Union, (applause.) Two years have elapsed since the surren der. At that time, wc were nearer reconstruc tion than we .now are. Why is this so ? Be cause the rebels were then humble, and only wished to save their lives. But when leniency was exercised, the secessionists took the reins in their own hands and controlled things their own way. We wont eat any more dirt, said they. But now they must cat it by the bushel. Applause. They must stand back let loyal men rule, and the old State will be so restored to the Union of our fathers. I repeat, let us act with Congress. I have proclaimed it on the stump in Western Carolina, I proclaim it here to-night that I am for Congress and opposed to Andrew Johnson and secession 1 Great applause. He attempted to resurrect the Democratic party from the foul grave of se cession, and I am opposed to him. What we now need among Union men Republi cans of the South, is a long pull, and n strong pull all together, leaving Andyjjohnson and secession out of the question ! Laughter and cheering. Not only must we leave Andrew and secession out, but we mutt set aside the latter-day-war-saints also ! Cheering. Especially those obstinate men, who de nounced every friend of Congress as a con temptable mean white man 1 There are those too who started well, were Union men up to the close of the war, who are all wrong now. We must not include them when we count the elect, for they are those who falter be tween the porch and the altar. Let us earrj out the act of Congress in good faith, against Andrew Johnson and secession to the strict letter of the law 1 Great applause. Let us have no bickerings in our camp, but act cheerfully and unitedly. Mr. J. H. Harris moved to lay the letter of Mr. Tourgce on the table, which was carried. Dr. Jordan, of Person, arose to respond to the sentiment of the gentleman from Da vidson, who said we had come here for the good of the people. That was his purpose. Mr. Jordan continued. These are exciting times. When I remember my losses by the war, Sir, including two sons, I can scarcely restrain the emotions of my heart. I can scarcely control my indignation against those who brought this ruin on our coun try. I do not desire, nor will I indulge, in crimination, but those two who brought about this rebellion, thank God, one of thein is now in his prison, I think the most wicked of men. But we must be calm. Let us proceed quietly and determinedly, . for Sir, I say that those who were instrumental in getting up this war, should never hold office. I always opposed the rebellion and favored n jgotiation to put an end to it, and when it ended I rejoiced to learn that Jeff Davit was captured and on his way to For tress Monroe. Sir, I recollected his bastile at Salisbury, where the innocent died with out a trial, ever being accorded them; and when any one expresses sympathy with him. I can scarcely keep my temper. I never committed treason. If sending my boys some provisions and clothing is treason, I did that. They volunteered because of the im pending draft, for conscription had not then been imported from France by that man who, next to Benjamin, hd the lowest in stincts in the world one Wigfall, whom nobody has ever heard of sitice he got over the Mississippi I Cheers. Let us be firm and determined as I hare said and there is nothing to rear. " After some further remarks Mr. Jordan offered the following resolutions : Whereas, In the opinion of this meeting while it is eminently proper and right that the State of North-Carolina should be restored to her former position in the Union, that peace, prosperity and social happiness may return to our people, and whereas we profess to have aud feel a deep in terest in their future welfare and permanent pros perity, and whereas we are painfully impressed with the belief that four-fi ftbs of them are unable to pay taxes and meet their individual indebted ness, under our present collection laws, there fore, Resolved, That in order to avert very great dis tress amongst the people ot the State and avert the sacrifice of the property thereof as to allow the citizens an opportunity of workingout of their indebtedness, we respectfully solicit Gen. Sickles, the military commander of this district to inter pose his authority in arresting an evil so disas trous to the peace, happiness and future pros perity of our citizens by a suspension for a time of the collection laws now in force iu this State. Jtesolvtd, That the President of this meeting ap point a committee of to confer with Gen. Sickles on this subject, which they may do by correspondence or personal interview with the general, or both, as they may deem most expedi ent, iu order to effect the object above specified on all debts contracted before the war and that they report to The resolutions went to the committee. There being nothing ot an important char acter before the Convention, the Hon. Thos. Settle was loudly called upon for a speech. Mr. Settle said that, through loss of sleep and weariness, he was scarcely able to do justice to himself or properly entertain the Convention ; but there wai so much to talk about, that he would proceed to say some thing. The rebels, he said, had time and again spurned the terms offered them by the general government they had especially re fused to adopt the Constitutional Amend ment, which to rebels was the most magnan imous offer in all the history of the world from the conqueror to his fallen foe. But owing to their stubbornness we were here to-day to break dirt and lay the cornerstone of the Republican party in North-Carolina. Applause. The war, he said, was com menced to per n isyite slavery. It went the other way, contrary to the expectations of all the leaders of the rebellion. Therefore, slavery is forever dead in the United States of America. This has been the work of God, and I can say that it is for the best. Great applause. We have been educated up to the true point ot republican liberty we are now willing to see every man clothed upon with all his rights, immunities and fran chises without regard to race or color. Some of the Northern States Ohio is be hind us. We hope she may catch up. Laughter and cheering. With us the old crust of ideas formed by the institution of slavery is broken up in a thousand frag ments. They are floating off passing away, ns everything must pass away not founded upon the eternal rock of justice. Applause. We are called radicals. Why, all great re formers are radicals, they go to the root of the matter. Franklin, Morse, Fulton and Field were accounted radicalsin science. So all great men, who show to the old fogies something new under the sun. Look at the progressmade in this country, in railroads in every kind of improvement. Shall our laws "stand still ? The old ideas were good in their time. But wc live in a new era of revolution, where one month flings a greater flood of light upon the world than fifty years ordina rily. Sir. allow me here to refer to the ad dresses of the colored gentlemen, to whom I listened in committee this evening. Mod crate, intelligent, patriotic in all their views, such utterances would reflect credit upon any man or set of men. We have also agreed in that committeeto unfurl the ban ner of the great Republican party to the breeze 1 Tremendous applause. Without a party of that kind, all our efforts will be wasted. There can be no display of practi cal patriotism until we form a party of true men and exert ourselves for the cause of "Union, Liberty and Equality," systemati cally ! Applause I was a Democrat prior to the war. I en tered that part- fighting for reform for free suffrage among whites. At the opening of the war, I joined the Unioi. party. Since then we have not been able to do much. But to-day I enter this new party battling for reform for free suffrage ! Let us stand fairly and squarely upon that platform. We are now Republicans our banner is to the breeze- let us rally for the conflict. Mr. Grissom, of Granville, asked permis sion to introduce Col. Dewecse to the Con vention. He was a federal officer, and he hoped would be welcome by all. Col. Deweese advancing was greeted with applause, lie said that when he came into this Hall to-day, he expected to remain si lent, but what lie had seen and heard im pelled him to express his sentiments of grat ification. This Convention was alive ani mated witli the true spirit, buoyant with hope. I shall go North in a few days. There I expect to meet with distinguished public gentlemen. I can bear glad ti dings with me. I can tell them that North-Carolina is in earnest in this attempt at reconstruction. I was born a Southern man and wear the federal blue. When I vo ted for Fremont in Arkansas, they expelled me from that State. I then owned slaves, which I had inherited, but now thank God they are as free as I am ! Applause. I was ever opposed to that institution. When they sent me away from Arkansas I told therr I would return, and so I did. I went back in 18G3 at the hend of 4,000 cavalry, and when I left that town loyalty was at a premium. What do we behold here to-day ! The practical display of the principles in scribed iu the declaration of independence that all men are created free and equal. What radical could have reasonably expect ed this six years ago ? It is a glorious sight, sir, to us all. And I would say to these col ored gentlemen beware of rebel influence. The men who massacred your brethren at Fort Pillow, New Orleans, and Memphis, who burn your sehool-houscs, and persecute you to-day, would tear down the fabric of these free institutions, which you are to-night engaged in erecting, and re-enact the horrors of Laurel Valley in every county of the State. Beware especially of those who proclaim that they are merely overrun, not subjugated. Gentlemen, the whole North is looking upon you. That people will scrutinize your every action as carefully as does the mother her babe, striving to walk for the first time. I appeal to you to do your whole duty, and ere long the members from North-Carolina will be re-enrolled on the books of the Con gress of the nation. I have some desire to settle in your beautiful State. It will make me a pleasant home, should the principles of free speech and human liberty become the recognised right of every man. I do not care for ridicule and neither do you, but I warn you that in a week or so this Convention will be the best abused set of men in this part of District No. 2. After some further playful remarks, Col. Deweese thanked the audience for their at tention and retired. His speech was fre quently interrupted by cheering and other demonstrations of appreciation for such a well timed and well-worded effort. Let us hope the Colonel may become a citizen of North-Carolina, redeemed and purified. Mr. Jas. Henry Harris, of Wake, colored orator, was next called upon to address the meeting. He said that so many able speeches had already been delivered, that he felt somewhat diffidentiipoff this occasion. But he would venture to speak, and utter the true sentiments of his heart, at this the prou dest moment of his life, when all men meet tree and equal for the first time beneath the dome of the Capitol of the Old North State. What is the real object of this Convention, gentlemen? Why are we here assembled? Not to devise the machinery of reconstruc tion, but to enquire into the best means of working under the supplemental bill, which Congress has enacted for our benefit. To organize for that purpose, is the great object of this Convention. But just here interposes the negro question, which has vexed the minds of the most dis tinguished statesmen of the nation in times past and the present. For two hundred and fifty years the negro and white man lived together as friends such friends as master and slave could be. Now that the negro is frej. all of a sudden the whites and blacks become unacquainted with each other. For the first time they do not know what to do each with the other. Laughter and cheers. How is this ? Why is it that the white man does not know what disposition to make of the negro, or the negro of the white man, after they have lived together in the same country for so many years. I can tell you, gentlemen, it is because they become strangers to each other. Let us get acquainted once more, and all the difficulties will be removed. Applause. But it is said by some that it will never do to enfranchise the coloied man. They desire to see him colonized sent back to the wilds of Africa, beyond the blue waters of the great ocean. How is that,? Has the surface of America contracted grown smaller ? so that there is no room for those, who have lived here for centuries ? Shall we be expatriated for lack of broad acres the acres which our forefathers cleared and have rendered beautiful and fertile ? I ap peal to your reason. Is it possible that such a thing has been seriously considered in this country, where the bones of our an cestors are laid, and around whose altar the warmest affections of our hearts are en twined ? Applause. But let me illustrate the objection to the enfranchisement of the colored man in my feeble way. It reminds me of the young man, who owns a fine horse, which he is in the habit of driving although he is very much afraid of him, so that he cannot con ceal it. Ah, says a friend to him, that is a fine horse of yours, but you seem afraid of him, will you sell him ? No, re plies the young man, I'm afraid of him, but he is valuable and I can't sell him. So they seem to be afraid like the young man of this horse, that if they put us in the po litical harness we will run away with the concern and damage the body politic. Laughter and applause. That is the way they regard us, they are afraid of us but we are not going to fulfil their fears. We are going to work in the political harness with a good will we are going to help to pull the State back into the Union but all we now ask is that the buckles may not be drawn so tight sensation and cheers for we have grown a little corpulent, politically speaking. (Continued applause.) But we have these prejudices to overcome. Yet one moment's candid reflection would be sufficient to remove such wrong impressions, so much indulged. Now let us look at it. What has been the history of our race during the late rebellion ? Can any nation on earth present so grand a record ? With all their wrongs and sufferings upon them, with a knowledge that "their Union friends were battling for their freedom, they staid at the homes of their masters, who weie absent fighting to keep them in sla very, and protected the defenceless females with a wonderful fidelity ! What other peo ple under the canopy of Heaven would have done this thing ? What nobler exhibition of selt-sacrifice can be furnished in tho history of mankiud ? True to their instincts, they continued on the farms, tilling the soil and in doing so, thev raised to themselves a monument high as the Heavens and deep as the great sea ! Prolonged cheering. Wha man can now tolerate unworthy prejudices against our race! So you see, sir, that we understood each other in our old relations ; and if we get tho roughly acquainted in our new, we shall suc ceed as well iu the future as we did in the past. In conclusion allow me to repeat that this is the proudest moment of my life. When I behold these Star-Spangled banners. spreading in beauty above an assemblage of people without regard to race or color, this motto of "Union, Liberty, Equality" earned into practical operation, sir, upon this the first occasion in the State of JNortli-Carolina, my heart swells with emotions, which can scarcely find intelligible utterance! (Cries of go on ! go on ! and loud cheers.) Well, Mr. President and gentlemen I will trespass a while longer on your patience. I hold, sir, that the sin of slavery was a national sin. But I hold, sir, in addition that, we must bury that dead past. Let us sink its memory a thousand fathoms in the ocean of oblivion and look only to the bright future! (Cheering.) Recently I have travelled in the Northern States and consulted with the first gentle men of the nation. One thing is fixed. They have determined to reconstruct these States on a thoroughly loyal basts. They have aided me and sent me here to consoli date my people and organize them. Fer the colored people are a loyal race. They are not too ignorant to be so. Go to any planta tion, wake up the most stupid negro and ask him if he loves liberty, and he nill an swer you, yes ! Cheers. Now do not run the ignorant ticket. I tell you the negro knows enough to distinguish friend and foe. The man who goes on the ignorant platform, will certainly go down ! Applause. The colored people will vote all right for they will stand by the Union and its friends. Mr. President, I have said that the future is bright ! I can see, sir, the beacon sun of liberty rising overthe dissolving storm-cloud of war, gilding the whole nation with the light of its splendor! Cheers. Though the political waters have been disturbed and shaken to the dregs, I can behold the old Ship of State still breasting the billows tri umphantly, her prow pointed homeward over the now subsiding waves of a great commotion, no longer bearing the foul car cass of slavery upon her shining decks, but which, thank God, has been washed over board in the tumult, and sunk forevermore in the fathomlcsswaters 1 Great sensation. I can behold t he Eagle of America, the free bird of the freest government of earth, shed ding from his pinions over every section ot our beloved country, peace, protection and prosperity ! Whence come these visions of a glorious futuxe ? It is the work of God him self, who has resolved that all men shall be free and equal 1 Tremendous applause. At the conclusion of his eloquent address, Mr. Harris xvas invited to the President's seat, and presided for the balance of the evening over the deliberations of the Con vention. Mr. J. W. Hood, colored, of Cumberland, proceeded to address the meeting. He fail ed to perceive the magnanimity of the Con stitutional Amendment, but he could per ceive the greatness of the present bill. An overruling Providence has brought us our freedom, and has conducted the whole af fair. Let us unite with the Republican party. It is the only true party in the country. It is the champion of liberty and it has ordain ed, under God, that when this State be re admitted to the Union, her Constitution shall be absolutely pure, wherein the rights of all should be guaranteed. Applause. The Convention then adjourned to Thurs day morning, 10 o'clock. SECOND DAY'S PROCEEDINGS. Thcbbday, March 28th;i867. The President caller! tli rv order at 10 o'clock. Prayer by Rev. Mr. Hood, of Cumberland. Mr. Knapp, of Edgecombe, then proceeded to address the Convention. He said that he re joiced that the hour for doing even handed jus tice to all men and all races had arrived when every man should have his Just rights accorded to him and maintained. Let as not now fritter away the precious moments, but go ahead. There is no use waiting for Conservatives. Applause. Let them go up. They are in the way of the na tion, and they must get out of it. Let us educate the colored people. Give them all the advanta ges which the whites possess, and with 6neh an even start there can be a fair race. Gov. Worth proposed to colonize them. What humbug! Send nil your laborers away ? What folly! Wc need the colored people hereto retain the capital in the country, which has already come down here from the "North to improve the lands. Mr. Settle, of Rockingham, the chairman of the committee on resolutions reported a series, which were read from the Clerk's desk. They are given iu full, ns passed, below. Mr. Settle, said he would not detain the Con vention by any extended remarks. The resolu tions spoke for themselves. He referred, how ever, especially to that one which seemed to touch the heart of every delegate the resolution in re lation to the Republican party, where we pledge ourselves to the maintenance of its principles. Cheers. That resolution, sir, meets my heartiest approbation,and 1 only hope that hereafter we shall forever keep even step with the great, pnrtv which saved and perpetuated the Union and the Constitution. Prolonged applause. Mr. Dick then took t he floor. He said that the members of this convention were the pioneers in the work of reconstruction the true exponents of the grand ideas of the age, for we find both races here assembled, rising above mere prejudice, and mingling their efforts in godlike majesty of mind for the restoration of the Union. We" are now completing the work of the old revolution we are fulfilling the expectations of all true Re publicans, in re-establishing and perfecting free institutions upou the basis of liberty and cquulit y Tfie speaker here referred to the Congress at Hali fax lie said that its name had come down hi his tory, renowned the world over, because its mem bers cutting loose from the old, but mistaken idea of the world that man was ineupaMe of self government, established a constitution so suited to the development of all the generous impulses of the human heart, that, under its beneficent provisions, the people of our good old State had run a career of prosperity, unsurpassed for its glories, which were those of peace and not of war. He drew a picture of the happiness ol this mtion then iu gloomy words recalled the mem ories of that, disastrous era, when the wail of the mourner was heard in all the land, and the iraunt spectre of famine assailed the threshold of every habitation. When the war ended, he said, in stead of meeting with contumely or receiving harsh terms from the conqueror, he imposed so light a burden, that all were astonished. Under the influence of this kindness, what was done? Anything towards restoring the government up on a stable foundation? No, nothing in renlity. For it is a sad fact that the mass of the Southern people, still led by the pardoned leaders of the rebellion, grew defiant, neglected the plaiu re quirements of duty, and indulged iu invective and denunciation towards the greatest statesmen of the republic. Therefore, the work of reconstrue tiou remains yet unaccomplished. We have now the terms once more laid down, we know the guarantees necessary to be given for future good behavior, and as a portion ol the people, we'have assembled to express our willingness to carry out the laws ol Congress in word and spirit. Iu or der to do so practically, we have further deter mined to unfurl the brilliant banner of the Re publican party. We shall then be in fraternal concord with the Northern people, and Union, Liberty, Equality become cardinal principles for all ages. Air. Dick paid a glowing tribute to the colored people, their remarkable fidelity and loyalty. The heresy of the past is exploded. We can now Bee that justice and confidence will do more to win their affections, than anything else. Let us now inculcate a feeling of nationality a broad sentiment of patriotism not confined within State lines. The speaker then delivered an elo quent eulogy upon America, and closed amid the applause of the delighted audience. Mr. Dick's speech will appear in full hereaf ter. Rep. Mr. Coleman, of Cabarrus, arose to say that he was glad the line was to be drawn here to day. Let those, who had never bowedtheir knees 10 anal, Keep that line well defined because its obliteration benefitted the sccessiouists, who were now all "Union" men. Let us be called Re publicans, aud devote ourselves to the mainte nance of the piiueiples ol that party. Mr. Cole man referred to bis consistency in the past he told the colored people that lie had ever been their friend, and rejoiced to sec them start in the race even with the white man. He had no fears of the success of their race. For as civili zation started in Egypt upon the banks of African Nile, he thought it would yet be ornamented by the intellects of the dusky sons ol that clinic transplanted to free America. The spe iker was frequently interrupted by bursts of applause. Rev. Geo. W. Brodie of Wake, colored, was loudly called for. He said that he had wished to remain a silent member of this Convention. But being thrown into the battle, as it were, he deemed it his duty to fight. These things are a wonder to me a grand and sublime sight. In the Capitol 01 JNortu-uaroima we are assembled this Con vention of whites and colored. Look at the past history of these races, behold diem in the present. What a wonderful sight for the eyes of all men ! icnecrs. j vv e have moved ahead of all others a step in advance of other people, there is not one who now wishes to so back ! These are the reasons, why these things are a wonder to me 1 L.appiau6e.. lam rejoiced also, sir, at the tone of modera tion observed in those resolutions. With the memory of all our wrongs in the past, the color ed people still desire to send forth loyal princi ples of good will to mankind, appeafing to the honorable sentiments of the human heart. I am glad this is bo. As a colored man, 1 am watched, observed and feared. When I left my home in the South years ago, I went to enjoy the freedom of the British government. But I loved my na tive bouth I knew m my heart that I should yet comeback a freeman. Audi have so returned, thank God. Cheering. Those resolutions also speak of party. The colored people are iu lavor of one party the party that bears on its banner and in its heart the motto of " Union, Liberty, Equality." Give ns that liberty to enjoy ourselves in the highest sense of the term, for it is sweet to us. We love it. Else I may ask you in the language ol Burns, If I'm designed yon lordling's 6lavc, Rir nuiiii-rt'c Ion- iitciimjifl r, - .g. w it y liy was an independent wish S er planted in my mind ? fSensation and great applause.! But we havo adopted the name of Republican. I love that name. I have ever been a republican, aud I can tell my white frieuds that they will love it too, before they get through with it. Laughter and cheers. Continue your course, my friends, aud you will succeed for the colored man will 6taud by his friends. Let me, however, undeceive my white friends. They regret the war we do also because of its sufferings, but we do not regret it as they do, for it brought us liberty ! Let them remember that fact always, and we can never differ ou other points. I have before also said that 1 love my country. We all love it, but the colored man hates its wrongs to him. But we bury the past it is swallowed up in the glory of the present. Great applause. Look at the progress of our people their wouderful civilization. What have we to tear iu competition with the whites, if they give us a fair race We will make good citizens, some of our people statesmen ot renown. I appeal to a Douglas and a Laugston. The slave from the dank swamp and cotton field, to-day delights the most refined audiences in the nation with varied learning and polished oratory, or compet es before the most eiudite gentlemen of the republic, be fore the learned Supreme Court of the United States, in discussions upon the profound matters of constitutional and international law. Sensa tion. We have reason to be proud to thank God, who made Abraham Lincoln an instrument ol our deliverance. Now that the tree of liberty is planted, with its roots watered by such show ers as these, I can Btaud under the pleasant shadow of its branches and cry happy! happy! I Applause. This is a glorious event No modern history records such an event. But going back two thousand years, we can find a parallel in the schools of Greece and Egypt, where the white and black man together quaffed at the fountain of learning Cri. s of that's so. There was no distinction then. And now we have again caught up the graud idea of the ancient republicans aiid disciples of liberty, and this day beholds its re production upon the soil of the new world Cheers. Talk not of our ignorance. I have re ferred to our Douglas and Langrton. The latter is a friend and companion of mine. But there is a Garnett too, a man who In England holds a place second to none in law and theology. Tou issantLe Overture and Hannibal are generals of SSLTfc ?Vh.at does thi8 mean? Why God Slrv n- brain! tov aI1 nlike-the coloris the use our brains, and see where the colored man then stands! Takes colored child, give lira a aTvwheuUC M,,n' a.d.heTw111 improve ts ttnchas rlte chlld- 1 hia 1 8tty buu6e the experi ence of every day ilia strates its truth. T tbhl tT"8,'- ?,n? who,.caIled the rcgro a baboon. I rather thmk he is inclined that wiy himself. 5S? t1" PP'M'M-J We do not fear our i pnd? mysL,f n . as muukas the white man on his color For it i. not men, but meas- P1"!!!8 whicn to-day control; the civilized world. Applause. Gentlemen, I am glad that I nm connected with this Convention. The people among the- whites can say the same. Both whites and blacks, how W"J"ft prepare to work. My people are ready. Ed W.L,1 WB desire the injury of no one, we will applause Ut pa,ty ! li-