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[361] signed by Wilberforce, William Smith, Zachary Macaulay, William Evans, M. P., Samuel Gurney, George Stephen, Suffield, S. Lushington, M. P., Buxton, Cropper, William Allen, and Daniel O'Connell, M. P.1 They expressly rejected the claims of the Society to antislavery support as ‘wholly groundless,’ and its profession of promoting the abolition of slavery as ‘altogether delusive.’ The influence of Liberia on the slave trade would be limited to its petty territory. ‘The only effectual deathblow to that accursed traffic will be the destruction of slavery throughout the world,’ to which they were compelled to say they believed the Colonization Society ‘to be an obstruction.’ Englishmen ought not to be called upon ‘to contribute to the expenses of a colony which, though no doubt comprising some advantages, was formed chiefly to indulge the prejudices of American slaveholders, and which is regarded with aversion by the colored population of the United States.’

Our objections to it are, therefore, briefly these:—While2 we believe its pretexts to be delusive, we are convinced that its real effects are of the most dangerous nature. It takes its root from a cruel prejudice and alienation in the whites of America against the colored people, slave or free. This being its source, the effects are what might be expected: that it fosters and increases the spirit of caste, already so unhappily predominant; that it widens the breach between the two races—exposes the colored people to great practical persecution, in order to force them to emigrate; and finally, is calculated to swallow up and divert that feeling which America, as a Christian and a free country, cannot but entertain, that slavery is alike incompatible with the law of God and with the well-being of man, whether the enslaver or the enslaved.

On these grounds, therefore, and while we acknowledge the Colony of Liberia, or any other colony on the coast of Africa, to be in itself a good thing, we must be understood utterly to repudiate the principles of the American Colonization Society.

1 The fate of this precious document is unknown. A facsimile of the signatures is given in Mrs. Child's “Oasis,” p. 64.

2 Lib. 3.162.

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