While in this manner the divisions of nationalities
CHAP. Lxviii} 1776.
were broken in pieces, the conference, at the instance of Christopher Marshall
, who had been educated among the Friends and had left the society, because he held it right to draw the sword in defence of civil liberty, resolved that the members elected to the convention should be required to declare their faith in God the Father
his eternal Son, and the Holy Spirit
; and in the divine inspiration of the Scriptures.
For this interference he was much censured; but the pure minded mystic would not perceive that he was justifying the exclusiveness of the Catholic
and the Anglican church.
It had not been the intention of the conference to perform administrative acts; yet to repair the grievous neglect of the assembly, they ordered a flying camp of six thousand men to be called out, in conformity to the vote of the continental congress.
One thing more remained; on the afternoon of the twenty fourth, on the report of a committee composed of Mackean, Benjamin Rush of Philadelphia
, and James Smith
of York county
, the conference, with perfect unanimity, all its members giving their voices one by one, pronounced in behalf of themselves and their constituents their willingness to concur in a vote of congress, declaring the United Colonies to be free and independent states; and a copy of their vote, having been signed at the table, was, by Mackean, the president, delivered directly to congress.
Far happier were the people of Maryland
, for they acted with moderation and unanimity; their counsels sprung from a sense of right and from sym pathy with their sister colonies, especially Virginia