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consciences of the members. In 1696 they advised against “bringing in any more negroes.” Chester Quarterly Meeting sent in numerous memorials requesting positive action, but many wealthy Friends were slaveholders, and many saw no evil in the established system, no doubt leniently interpreted among them, and save general exhortation against slave-dealing, the Yearly Meeting could not be brought to a definite position till 1758. That year saw two memorable minutes adopted with substantial unanimity; one required Friends to give up all civil offices in which “ they think they must enjoin the compliance of their brethren or others with any act which they conscientiously scruple to perform ” (meaning especially places in the Assembly); the other went to the root of the matter of slavery, and not content with a declaration against dealing in slaves, as some urged, declared that Friends were " to set them at liberty, making a Christian provision for them," and appointed a committee to visit all slaveholders to induce compliance. They were largely successful, aided as they were by sympathizing Friends in the various meetings. But a considerable number held out, and in 1774 sentiment was so advanced as to call out a more emphatic con
demnation of all slave-holding. In 1776 a declaration of independence for all slaves held by Friends was decreed, and monthly meetings were directed, after proper effort, to exclude from membership all Quakers who refused to comply. How faithfully yet how tenderly the work was done, while the Revolutionary War raged around them, the records of 1776 and 1777 in nearly every meeting testify.
But the Quaker sense of right was not yet satisfied. In 1779 the Yearly Meeting concluded that something was owing to the slaves for their past services. "The state of the oppressed people who have been held by any of us in captivity and slavery calls for a deep inquiry and close examination how far we are clear of withholding from them what under such an exercise may open to view as their just right.” The matter was placed on the basis of justice, not of charity, and many former owners voluntarily paid an amount, adjudged by impartial umpires to be fair, as the recompense for unrequited labors.
Not only did the meetings relieve the State of a large part of its criminal procedures, but they also agreed to succor all, among their own members, in poverty and suffering. Much of
Ž.. this was done quietly, but many cases came to the meetings and are on record.* Sometimes , money was raised, at others personal attention was directed, and as there were no hospitals, Friends' houses and lands were used. +
Nor did cases near at hand and of their own Society alone demand their attention, but we find collections taken up for captives among the Turks as early as 1691, when many of the donors had just reached the country.*
The ideas of these Pennsylvania Quakers on the subject of education were not very exalted. . Among those who came over from England there were, besides Penn, several university men of high attainments, like Thomas Lloyd and James Logan. The great majority were common people very ordinarily educated, and they did not set any great value on the higher training. They did not, as did the New England settlers, have a college in the first score of years, because they lacked the incentive which most strongly influenced the Puritans. According to them the ministry did not depend on education, and in the minds of many of them, it was no better, perhaps worse, for its presence. Then
• " Ordered that Caleb Pusey and Walter Faucett take care to hire a cow for the widow Rudman, and the quar. terly meeting are obliged to answer them 308."-Chester Monthly Meeting, 6, III., 1889.
“The condition of J. C., a Friend of Bucks County, being laid before this meeting, having lost by fire to the value of 162 pounds, this meeting orders that a collection be settled in each particular First Day's meeting, and two appointed to reccive them.”—Ibid., 2, IX., 1601. The prac. tice of First-day collections for special cases was general in those days.
t“ This meeting having taken into consideration the con. dition of T. N., be being generally weak and having a great family of snall children, and living very remote from neighbors, it is agreed that he is to remove for the reasons aforesaid, and settle down upon the lands of B. C., Jr., having given his consent."-Ibid., 6, XII., 1692.
“J. P., being in necessity of a cow, having lost one, .and being in necessity of milk for his children, this meeting have lent him £5 for one year to buy one."-Concord Monthly Meeting, 1699.
“ Information being given this meeting that W. P. is. very poor and in necessity, this meeting orders to get a good pair of leather 'briches' and a good warm coat and waistcoat, one pair of stockings and shoes, and make
a report of the charge to next meeting.”-Falls Monthly Meeting, 1701.
“Our preparative meeting have agreed with A. F. to keep N. M. one year with sufficient meat, drink, washing, shaving, and leading him to meetings for £15, 106."-Wil. mington Monthly Meeting.
Chester Quarterly Meeting, 1, XII., 1691.
the classic languages were heathen, the modern tongues frivolous. They had no place for art or music. The range of possible education was therefore greatly restricted. The number of self-educated mathematicians and naturalists (chiefly botanists) who grew up among them was rather remarkable. But aside from this the education of those born in this country in the second and third generations was limited in scope and amount.
There were no colleges except Harvard and Yale, and they were distant and alien. The medical was the only profession demanding much training, and except in this one field, there was but little high culture among them. It was not till 1856 that the first Quaker college was in operation.
What they lacked in the higher education they made up in the lower.
in the lower. As with crime and pauperism, they took the elementary training of their children in their own special care. Penn well knew the value of education. In his letter of instructions to his wife he wrote about his children: “For their learning be liberal. Spare no cost; for by such parsimony all is lost that is saved.” In the first Laws of the Province we find, “To the end that the poor as well as the
rich may be instructed in good and commendable learning, which is to be preferred before wealth, -Be it enacted that all persons .... having children .... shall cause such to be instructed in reading and writing, so that they may be able to read the Scriptures and to write by the time they attain to twelve years of age, and that then they be taught some useful trade or skill.” Then follows a penalty of £5 for failure to secure this attainment. In 1683 the Governor and Council employed Enoch Flower on the following terms: “ To learne to read English 4s. by ye Quarter, to learne to read and write os. by ye Quarter, write and cast accots 8s. by ye Quarter; for boarding a scholar, that is to say, dyet, washing, lodging and Scooling, Tenn pounds for one whole
In 1697 was chartered the “Public School,” intended to be a Latin school of considerable advancement after the fashion of an English grammar school, which now exists under the name of the “ William Penn Charter School." There were a number of branches over the city, and free scholarships were established to give the
• Colonial Records, Vol. I., page 36.