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THE AFRICAN IN THE UNITED STATES.

at whose completion the rich and the poor, the upper and the lower orders, are found, as a whole, to have changed places. It is a law of slow action, but sure.

The causes are apparent. The sons of the rich eat daintily, exercise daintily, keep late hours for resting and rising, are self-indulgent and extravagant. There are, of course, exceptions. Undoubtedly, however, the surroundings of the sons of wealth create tendencies this way, toward effeminacy of body and uneconomical habits of mind. These are downward tendencies, and, pressing through a cycle of years, bring the descendants of the rich, as a class, to the social bottom.

The poor, on the other hand, are compelled, by their condition of life, to strength-giving exercise, and careful, saving methods in the management of means. Robust bodies and thrifty ways give upward tendencies, which, acting through the social cycle, lift the descendants of these poor to the higher planes. Taking men in the mass, tendencies and results are this way.

Now, as regards the blacks, this fundamental law is broken, and the issue, in a state of society theoretically free, is approaching disorder.

The blacks are an improving race, and the throb of aspiration is quickening. Progress with the pure African is, indeed, slow. How could it be otherwise? A long dark night of barbarous ignorance in his native land, succeeded on these shores by nearly a century of servitude, wherein letters were denied him, and improvident, unthrifty habits necessarily engendered, could rapid progress for the race, under these circumstances, be rationally expected? Advancement in mental training and in economic science must needs be slow—but there is advancement.

That portion of the colored population known as mulattoes show, in mind and manners, a marked superiority, drawn from the side of their white parentage. This element, though increasing among themselves, is not increasing (appreciably) from admixture of bloods; because the white man can not now cohabit with negresses with the impunity belonging to days of slavery. With all its gradations it still, however, forms a very large class. They mingle freely with the pure African on terms of perfect equality, have the African instinct, and make a great factor in determining the average progress of the race.

This laboring class, working upward along the social cycle, meets, almost on the threshold of development, an impassable barrier. With growing aspirations incapable of being realized, they are doomed to remain where they have been, and be hewers of wood and drawers of water. Individuals here and there, by force of peculiar talent and fortunate circumstances, break through the opposing obstacle, and attain high positions; or such positions may be conferred in the interest