I do not favor recruiting for Massachusetts in that State, and I do not wish to be understood to favor it. But if, by work in Pennsylvania, you can help those fleeing from slavery through that State to reach Massachusetts, where they will be received into all the rights and advantages of our own citizens, I shall be glad. I do not want either to speculate out of the blood or courage of colored men; but I rejoice in having been instrumental in giving them a chance to vindicate their manhood, and to strike a telling blow for their own race, and the freedom of all their posterity. Every race has fought for liberty, and its own progress. The colored race will create its own future, by its own brain, hearts, and hands. If Southern slavery should fall by the crushing of the Rebellion, and colored men have no hand, and play no conspicuous part, in the task, the result would leave the colored man a mere helot; the freedmen a poor, despised, subordinated body of human beings, neither strangers nor citizens, but “contrabands,” who had lost their masters, but not found a country. All the prejudices, jealousies, and political wishes, of narrow, ignorant men and demagogues would have full force, and the black man would be the helpless victim of a policy which would give him no peace short of his own banishment. The day that made a colored man a soldier of the Union, made him a power in the land. It admitted him to all the future of glory, and to all the advantages of honorable fame, which pertained to men who belonged to the category of heroes. No one can ever deny the rights of citizenship in a country to those who have helped to create it or to save it.
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