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Historical Documents
"Black Charge"

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Black Charge

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This cartoon, originally drawn by Edward Williams Clay as one of fourteen in a series called "Life in Philadelphia," satirized the committees created by Philadelphia black churches to settle disputes and monitor the moral behavior of members.

A beadle (a minor official in old Anglican church who was responsible for keeping order) says: "Please y'r Worship I hab taken up dis Nigger!! case he's -nebriated and -sulting to de Fair sec."

A ragged man says: "It was'nt me yr (hiccup) Honor. Dis Old Black Beadle kickd up (hiccup) all de Row case I asked bebe to scort a Lady Home."

A well dressed man, seated at a table and flanked by another man with a quill in hand says: "Well, young man, you seem to put a bery Fair Face, on the matter. But, I can assure you, Appearances, are bery Black, against you. What hab you to say, to de Charge."

Image Credit: The Print and Picture Collection, The Free Library of Philadelphia

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Related Entries:
"Is Miss Dinah at Home? "
"Grand Celebration Ob De Bobalition Ob African Slabery"

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