When you ask me how I became such a great advocate of universal citizenship, I can answer the question. I have had my prejudices just as other men in this land. but when I marched with the columns of loyal men on Southern soil, and saw the flag of treason defiantly flaunted in our faces; when I looked around me and asked for friends, I appealed to the white man in vain; he was the friend of the traitor, the sympathizer with the rebellion; he owed allegiance, he thought, to treason, and not to the Government of the United States. But at the deep dark hour of the night, the poor colored man, bowed down by the chains of slavery, would crawl through the marshes, through the thickets, wade the rivers, and come into our picket lines, into our camps, and tell us where the Rebel forces lay, and how we might attack treason and destroy it. That is the reason why I cared not when I found a man that was my friend - a friend to my country - though his skin was black, I could trust him sooner than I could the white traitor. Hence I want him to have the protection of the law. I am in favor of his having it.

I have recently spoken out in favor of Negro rights. Negroes have earned the right to vote and to serve in Congress. I would rather have a Negro sit beside me in the legislature and a colored person in the White House would not be amiss. As my father once said “it is no odds how obscure a young man may be Brought up in our government he may aspire Even to the presidential chare…” and “in our government a man Rises on Marrit [merit] or falls on Demarrt [demerit]…” Colored folks deserve these rights more than a Southern Democrat, a man who was a traitor to his country. 

I also helped push through legislation for negro education, because as my father said, “We must look to education to raise ourselves up”. So I would not fund one red cent for the education of white children unless that same cent was also provided for the education of colored children. Maybe this is why, in the recent presidential election, Frederick Douglas, whom I am proud to call a friend, once wrote: “No man has been bolder and truer to the cause of the colored man and to the country, than has John A Logan.”

In the recent presidential election there was a rumor that if I had been at the top of the ticket and not the Vice-President, the colored vote might have turned out in greater numbers and the White House would not be inhabited by Grover Cleveland. 

I will also admit that I had some trouble retaining my seat in the Senate. 


19. Still Hunt