Chicago Tribune, October 7, 1881

Chicago Tribune, October 7, 1881

OKLAHOMA.

Shall the Freedmen Settle There.

Mr. Hannibal C. Carter, the colored gentleman who was at one time Secretary of State of Mississippi, and who has of late been active in politics, lectured last night in Hershey Music-Hall. The lecture had been twice postponed, and Mr. Carter announced the first thing last night that he would not have consented to another postponement even if no one but himself and the reporters had been inside the hall.

The lecturer did not begin, however, until 9 o’clock, the audience being waited for up to that hour. When he did open up there were about thirty colored persons present and eight or ten whites, and most of them remained until the lecture was concluded. The absence of an audience so completely disappointed and upset Mr. Carter that he found it impossible to present a creditable lecture. He started in to read from manuscript, but had to give it up. He gave a rambling talk instead, but on the original subject, “Oklahoma.” As is known, there is a claim now pending before the Interior Department for some 15,000,000 acres of land in the Indian Territory for the accommodation of the negro, and particularly of the colored refugee. The claim is based on a treaty made with the Indians in 1866, when the question of providing homes for the freedmen was being agitated. Mr. Carter says that he comes here to plead for sympathy and for financial aid to carry on the prosecution of the claim before the Interior Department, in order that colored men may find a really free home. Now they are more oppressed in the South than they were before the War. Then they were bought, sold, and whipped, but now they are killed and robbed.

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