LAKE MOHONK CONFERENCE

 

October 2, 1889

Lake Mohonk, New York

 

Ladies and Gentlemen – The circumstances are such that I cannot attempt to speak with you at any length. In judgment, in heart, and in conscience, I am with you in your work. It has been fitly said that this great nation cannot afford to do the smallest injustice to the humblest of its people. To prevent this, to prevent the continuance of the injustice that has been from the beginning, in the dealing of ourselves and of our fathers, with those who own this vast territory that has made us a nation so fortunate, so rich, and so powerful; any attempt to change the current of injustice that began with the first white man on this continent and has lasted till to-day; any attempt to change that current and to deal, not merely in the spirit of the Golden Rule, but in the spirit of simple justice with these people-must command the sympathy and the aid of all reflecting and all good people. I will not attempt to say more; but so gratified am I with what I have seen of the methods and of the spirit of the Mohonk Conference that I cannot but hope the day may soon come when that other weaker race, not of a quarter of a million, but of six millions, shall have some such annual assembly as this to consider its condition and to aid it to rise to the full stature of true American citizenship.