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REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON THE EDUCATION OF
COLORED PEOPLE OF THE SOUTH. To the Yearly Meeting :
The Committee to consider and report upon the condition of the Colored People in the Southern States have held four meetings during the year, and have endeavored to give due attention to the duties indicated by the minute of their appointment, with especial reference to the encouragement and aid of education among these people. The Women's Branch of the Yearly Meeting having appropriated to the use of the Committee last year the sum of $500, it was divided proportionately between the schools at Aiken and Mt. Pleasant, S. C. These schools, the former being in charge of Martha Schofield, a member of this Yearly Meeting, and the latter having been established originally by members of our Society in this city and vicinity, have appeared to the Committee as worthy of such help as we might be able to afford in the general direction of our appointment.
Besides the sum received from the Women's Yearly Meeting treasury, members of the Committee, acting as individuals, have exerted themselves to secure and forward private subscriptions for the aid of the two schools; and there has also been maintained in operation during the year, the voluntary organization, “The Association of Friends to Promote the Education of the Colored People of the South,” composed of Friends interested in the work,
including most, if not all, the members of this Committee, and which was formed in consequence of the fact that this Committee did not have at its disposal, except in the case of the one appropriation already named, any funds with which to aid schools.
Without entering into details, the Committee desire to convey to the Yearly Meeting their strong apprehension of the continued need for help from those able to bestow it to the work of educating and training the colored people in the South. This work is still very far behind its need. The public schools for the colored people are in all respects inadequate. They are too few, they are too distant from many children, they are kept open but a small part of the year, and they have comparatively few competent teachers. But even if these defects were remedied, there would still exist that great work, now so evidently demanded, of moral and industrial training which must, for years to come, be specially encouraged by those who desire to see the colored people increase in the virtues of order, sobriety, industry, and truth.
The Committee have not entailed any charge whatever on the Yearly Meeting. They feel it right to state that the annual cost of maintaining the schools named above, in excess of their own income from pupils, and which has been borne by private subscriptions from persons interested in them, is something over $4,000. Of this sum, it is probable that nearly one-half might be expected to be collected within the limits of this Yearly Meeting. We recommend, therefore, that as a measure of assistance in the raising of
this amount, and also as an evidence of the interest of Friends as a body in this field of practical Christian labor, there be appropriated from the general fund of the Yearly Meeting the sum of $500.
If Friends shall feel it right to afford · help, there would seem to be a particular fitness in doing so. From the days of George Fox they have been among those who felt drawn to aid the unfortunate Africans, and now that their shackles have fallen, and the help they require is that which we can render so naturally, so freely, and so consistently with the truth we profess, it would seem to be indicated to us to be firm in maintaining an active and earnest relation to the work. If the Yearly Meeting should take this view, and should feel concerned to continue a Conimittee on this subject, it would be desirable that the minute on the subject should express the concern somewhat more at large than that under which we have been acting,-indicating the purpose of extending suitable aid and encouragement to the education and industrial and moral training of the colored people in the Southern States.
GEO. L. MARIS. Philadelphia, Fifth Month 15th, 1888.
NAMES AND ADDRESSES OF THE COMMITTEE TO PROMOTE THE EDUCATION OF THE COLORED PEOPLE OF THE SOUTH. Samuel S. Ash .
1717 Vine st., Phila. Elizabeth J. Acton Salem, N. J. George T. Atkinson
. Mullica Hill, N. J.