Southern States Convention of Colored Men
By 1870, southern black leaders were convinced that the black vote was worthless if black life and property rights were not respected. Outraged at the Republican Party's failure to protect their civil rights and promote blacks for office, many leaders debated withdrawing from the party at the Southern States Convention of Colored Men in 1871. The Convention called on the national government to protect these rights. Southern black leaders felt powerless against state administration and felt it was the obligation of the federal government to protect their rights. Influenced by Fredrick Douglas, it was ultimately decided that southern blacks would stay with the Republican Party. Many at the convention expected to be repaid for continuing to support the Republican Party, but they were disappointed with the Party was slow to react. Nevertheless, most African-American men remained loyal to President Grant and the Republican Party.
- Michael Perman, The Road to Redemption: Southern Politics, 1869-1979 (North Carolina: University of North Carolina Press, 1984), 39.
- Eliza Lewis, "The Political Mind of the Negro: 1865-1900," The Journal of Southern History 21 (May 1955): 189-202.
- "The Methodist Colored Conference," Richmond Whig, June 23, 1871.