Address delivered at the African Masonic Hall in Boston, Feb 27, 1833 by Mrs. Maria W. Stewart

April 27, 1833

Long paragraphs from an Address delivered at the African Masonic Hall in Boston,  Feb 27, 1833 by Mrs. Maria W. Stewart

After proclaiming that “we sprung from one of the most learned nations of the whole earth”,  Maria  says:   “But it is no use for us to boast that we sprung from this most learned, and enlightened nation, for this day a thick mist of moral gloom hangs over millions of our race.  Our condition as a people has been low for hundreds of years, and it will continue to be so, unless, by true piety and virtue we strive, to regain that which we have lost.  White Americans, by their prudence, economy, and exertions, have sprung up and become one of the most flourishing nations in the world…….. Whilst our minds are vacant and starving for want of knowledge, theirs are filled to overflowing. Most of our color have been taught to stand in fear of the white man from their earliest infancy, to work as soon as they could walk, and call ‘master’ before they could scarce lisp the word mother.  …..But give the man of color an equal opportunity with the white, from the cradle to manhood, …….and you would discover the dignified  statesman, the man of science, and the philosopher.  But there is no such opportunity for the sons of Africa, and I fear that our powerful ones are fully determined that there never shall be…..O, ye sons of Africa, when will your voices  be heard in our legislative halls, in defiance of your enemies, contending for equal rights and liberty?  …….We have pursued the shadow, they  have obtained the substance; we have performed the labor, they have received the profits; we have planted the vines, they have eaten the fruits of them.”  (G promises that this is to be continued)