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Day 5 of the Convention

Saturday, January 18, 1868

The Convention was called to order on Saturday at 11 o’clock, Mr. Pres. Cowles in the Chair.

After addressing some clarifying resolutions regarding the role of the Committee of Sixteen in providing a report on establishing a civil government, Mr. Durham’s resolutions from the prior day were read and put upon their passage. The resolutions, among other things, condemned Congress’ Reconstruction Acts.  Mr. Harris, of Wake, was one of the delegates to provide a strong response. In his remarks, he stated that he knew “this Convention was assembled for the purpose of framing a Constitution, embodying the ideas of liberty, justice and loyalty. He was astonished to see foreign subjects introduced, and the work of the Convention delayed, while the constituents of the delegates were impoverished and suffering for relief. Even while members were occupying these comfortable seats, from the effects of an accursed war, waged in defense of an accursed institution, the people of North Carolina were pinched with hunger and shivering in the cold blasts of the wintry winds.” After numerous procedural motions, delegates agreed to indefinitely postpone Mr. Durham’s resolution.

On motion the Convention adjourned.

Ann McColl

Ann McColl is an attorney and state constitutional scholar.