Encouraging Words.


No person is so superficial as not to see that, whether we will or not, the Negro has come to stay.  He is becoming even more and more an element in the sum of those experiences which we call our national life.

The Negro has our language, dress, civil customs, religion, domestic and social life, and in the main our vices.  He is a voter, law-maker, executive, educator, freeholder, priest, and head of a Christian household.  He has reached high proficiency in many branches of leering, and is skilled in all the arts with which we are acquainted.  In a vast number of cases, through crime it is granted, he is bone of our bone and flesh of our flesh.  He is less a ward than a citizen, and hardily more a pupil than instructor.  His absolute severance from fatherland, — his history, his tenacity of life and of race characteristics, yet, while retaining race characteristics, his greedy absorption the best elements of civilization, — his poverty and possibilities, awakening our sympathies and challenging our benevolent enterprise, — his tenacious hold upon our soil, our customs and our hearts, — these and many things beside indicate that he has come to stimulate, to lift us to a higher form of evangelical enterprise than that exhibited hitherto by any people. —President E. A. Merrell, Ripon College[2]


Column with advertisements Peoples Advocate,  02-07-1880


[1] Peoples Advocate,  02-07-1880. Washington, District of Columbia. Page 1.

The People’s Advocate, an African American newspaper, bears the motto, “Principles, not men, but men as the representatives of principles.” It  was published on February 14, 1880, in Washington, D.C. John Wesley Cromwell is identified on the top left of the page as the “Editor and Proprietor” of the newspaper, which was established in Alexandria in 1876 and, within two years, moved to Washington, D.C. [http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/media_player?mets_filename=evr7547mets.xml]


[2] Dr. Edward H. Merrell, a graduate of Oberlin College and Oberlin Theological Seminary, was appointed president at the June, 1876, meeting of the board of trustees. His affiliation with the College, however, dated from 1862, when he was appointed principal of the preparatory department and professor of languages. During his sixteen-year tenure as president, the College grew dramatically. A new chemistry laboratory made it possible to discard the obsolete method of exclusive textbook-lecture instruction; East Hall was expanded to twice its original size; the College acquired its first athletic field; and the original $50,000 endowment was multiplied several times. Although he retired as president in 1892, he remained on the faculty until his death in 1910, and all of his seven children attended Ripon College. [http://www.ripon.edu/library/archives/ripon-college-presidents/]