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Genealogy Historical Memoir of The Pennsylvania Society Pa

This book is titled

AN HISTORICAL MEMOIR OF THE PENNSYLVANIA SOCIETY, FOR PROMOTING THE ABOLITION OF SLAVERY; RELIEF OF FREE NEGROES UNLAWFULLY HELD IN BONDAGE, AND FOR
IMPROVING THE CONDITION OF THE AFRICAN RACE.

COMPILED FROM THE MINUTES OF THE SOCIETY AND OTHER OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS, BY
EDWARD NEEDLES.

It is useful for genealogical/historical research. See below for an excerpt from the table of contents:

CHAPTER I.—Origin of Slavery. Introduction of African slaves into America. Abolition of slavery commenced. Brief notice of its progress among
the "Friends." Kidnapping of free negroes—Leads to an association for
their protection.

CHAPTER II—1775.
Society for the relief of free negroes, unlawfully held in bondage"—Preamble to the Constitution—Hold four meetings—Prevented from continuing their labours publicly, by the occurrence of the revolutionary war. Interregnum of eight years. Notice of celebrated writers
who early espoused the cause of abolition. Stand made by Coke, first bishop of the Methodists in America against slavery

CHAPTER III.—1779.
Measures tending to legislative proceedings upon the subject of slavery. Bill introduced into the House of Representatives of Pennsylvania for the "gradual abolition of slavery." Yeas and nays upon its being engrossed. 1780. Final passage of the law; yeas and nays. Protest of dissentients.

CHAPTER IV.—1784.
"Society for the relief of free negroes unlawfully held in bondage," organized. Brief notice of its operations from that time to 1787.
The Society increases in usefulness and in public favour. Great accession
of numbers. Committee appointed to revise the Constitution. 1787. The
new Constitution adopted. Title of the Society changed. B. Franklin
elected first President under the new organization. Copies of the Constitution
sent to the Governors of the different States—to T. Clarkson, and other
eminent abolitionists. Memorial to the Convention to altar the Constitution
of the United States, upon the subject of the slave-trade ; adopted. Letter
from the London Committee for abolishing the slave-trade. Answer to that
letter. ........ 26

CHAPTER V.- -1788.
Vessels still fitted out for the slave-trade. Application to the Legislature by petition. Supplement to the law of 1780 passed. American captives in Algiers ; measures for their relief. Correspondence with Rhode Island respecting infractions of the law against the slave-trade. Notice of
frequent addresses to abolition Societies in this country and in England— to Governors and legislative bodies. 1789. The Society chartered by Act of Assembly. 1790. Memorial to Congress upon the subject of the slavery
of the Africans; signed by the President; Extract from it. Systematic measures adopted for promoting the improvement of the condition of the coloured people. Death of B. Franklin, President of the Society; resolution on the occasion. Operation of the Society not limited to Pennsylvania.

CHAPTER VI.—1791.
Attempt made to alter the law so as to allow slaves to beheld in Pennsylvania on certain conditions; effectually defeated by the Society. Memorial to Congress upon the slave-trade. Similar memorials from several States. Society formed in New Jersey. 1793. French emigrants from the West Indies petition for the alteration of the abolition law,
to allow them to hold their slaves; opposed and defeated. First notice of a
school for coloured children. Proposition from the New York Society for a Convention of delegates from all. the abolition Societies in the United* States to meet at Philadelphia; acceded to. A meeting of this Convention 1st mo.
1794. Question—'- Whether slavery, under any modification whatever, is
not inconsistent with the Constitution of this State ;" tried and decided in the
negative. ""----- 38

CHAPTER VII — 1796.
Bill to prevent the trade in slaves being carried on, and about to be laid before Congress. Committee to assist in its progress. New York merchants engaged in supplying the West India islands with
slaves; committee on the subject. Address to the Convention for 1797.
Voluminous minutes of the Acting Committee alluded to. Two brigs seized
and condemned by a jury in the District Court of the United States for Pennsylvania; hand cuffs, neck yokes, &c , found on board. Wilmington Society
about to suspend. Committee to visit and sustain them. Vessels fitted out for West India ports for the slave-trade. 1799. Bill pending the Legislature
for the total abolition of the slave-trade ; failed of success. Two American vessels with many black people on board captured. Destitute condition
of blacks ; committee to afford them assistance and protection; 126 of
them placed out. Committee to promote greater regularity of deportment
amongst the coloured people ; report. Advice upon the subject of religion
and morals. Committee to attend their places of worship; an address to be
read. Visit to coloured families. Report of their number, &c. 1801. Bill
before the Senate of Pennsylvania injurious and oppressive to the blacks,
Interesting memorial upon the subject adopted. - - 43

CHAPTER VIII—1803.
The venerable James Pemberton, President of the society for thirteen years, asks to be excused from further service. Dr. Benj. Rush elected President in his place ; R. Patterson and T. Parker, Vice Presidents. 1804. Special meeting in relation to a bill entitled, "An Act for
the abolition of slavery," being before the Senate of Pennsylvania. Memorial
upon the subject. 1804. Case of the ship Rufus, suspected of being fitted out from this port for the slave-trade.

CHAPTER IX.—1805.
Twenty-five years after the passage of the " act for the gradual abolition of slavery. Labours of the Society less arduous subsequent to that event. Symptoms of decline in energy. Slaveholding domination increasing. Extracts from the address to the Convention for 1806, in relation
to these topics. Convention to meet triennially. 1809. Difficulties in
the way of the Society again adverted to. Extracts from the address, showing
the ideas held at that time in relation to the apathy then sensibly felt to
prevail in the Society. Law passed by Congress prohibiting the foreign slavetiade. Abolition Society in Kentucky. Proposition to erect a school house for colored children. Completed in 1813. 54

CHAPTER X.—1811.
Memorial to the Legislature upon the subject of kidnapping.1813. Special meeting in relation to the trade in slaves carried on by American citizens under foreign flags. Memorial to Congress upon the subject. Extraordinary petition to the legislature for divers severe and oppressive measures against the people of colour; interesting memorial upon the occasion. Death of Dr. Benjamin Rush, President of the Society ; resolutions upon the occasion. Dr. Caspar Wistar elected in his place. Schools under care of the Society, and the building named after Thomas Clarkson, of London. 1816. Committee appointed to assist the Acting Committee in detecting kidnappers who decoy free people away from home under false pretences. Proposition to petition the legislature of the State for amendments
to the laws relative to the people of colour. Memorial to Congress in relation
to the same subject. Address to the American Convention ; regret expressed
at the small number of active members. Report of the labours of the


Acting Committee. Important decision of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. "The Apprenticeship Committee" appointed as part of the Committee for improving the condition of coloured people—final report.
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