|[The following pair of letters first appeared in the Madison paper the morning after the Twins' second performance in that city. The article was reprinted 2 days later in The Milwaukee Sentinel, the morning after Cable and MT's final Milwaukee reading; there the heading read "The Madison Journal publishes the subjoined correspondence which explains itself."]|
The following correspondence is self-explanatory.
MADISON, Jan. 21--Dear Mr. Cable: I do not apologize for addressing you thus, because you must feel that the stand you have taken for justice to my people has turned the heart of humanity toward you in admiration for your bravery, in love for your kindness. Hundreds of men like myself are living in this rigorous climate because of the unfair treatment you so eloquently set forth in your article in last month's Century magazine, which is our portion at home. You, sir, have raised a hope in our bosoms that our old neighbors and friends are at last allowing their own hearts to speak for us, and that we will soon see the dawn of a brighter day for our country and for our children.
Sir, if you are not inundated with grateful letters from colored people, it is not because of any lack of a keen sense of appreciation, but, alas! so few of us can let you know how we feel toward you; accept this, dear sir, as the thanks of the colored people of this city, who are only sorry that they have no more able representative than your humble servant. ARTHUR B. LEE.
MADISON, Wis., Jan. 28--Mr. Arthur B. Lee--MY DEAR SIR: I thank you most heartily for your letter of 21st inst., received only last night. It is a comfort and a reward to me. I am proud and grateful to say that I have many such from colored men, and also from white men, both north and south.
I am tempted to take the liberty of saying that men of color who can write such letters as these, ought to write to and for the public; and especially to add that in my belief nothing will work more powerfully for the special interests of the colored people than for such men to make themselves felt in terse, brief, pointed utterances upon current topics of general public interest,--upon interests common to all. This will be to utilize that "touch of nature" that "makes the whole world akin."
When colored men get to writing for white men's newspapers from the standpoint of common citizenship and mutual interests, then we shall see not one or two or half a dozen white men writing in behalf of freedmen's rights, but whole communities yielding those rights.
In short, let all colored men patiently, persistently and with all possible intellectual skill ignore their African origin and do, say and seek everything purely, only and entirely as American citizens, equally interested with all other American citizens in all the rights of all. I do not, by any means, imply that they should overlook colored men's interests and rights, but that the part of wisdom is to let the greater--at least the larger--include the less. Let colored men show such sagacious, active interest in the rights and interests of all men, that all men, shall gradually be won to regard them as valuable accessions to the community, and most valuable when most free.
Pardon me if my deep interest in the advancement of colored men has led me to speak too freely, and believe me