The Great Jubilee Thursday
Two centuries have elapsed since the first colored man was landed on the shores of Maryland and from then until now there has been no such gala day among the race as this – the celebration of the legis lative enactment which has made them the equal politically, of all men The American has detailed, ' from day to day the preparations which were being made for this grand jubilee of the enfranchised race – how it was to be a celebration in which all might join and unite in public rejoicings over the great changes in their condition. These expectations have been fulfilled to their utmost extent and the colored people yesterday had a ratification celebration not excelled by any other that has taken place elsewhere, and one to which all can look back with pride and pleasure.
Since our war worn veterans came marching home, with the green laurels of victory upon their sun burned brows Baltimore has not witnessed so grand a pageant as yesterday wound its way through our streets. Vast and magnificent in its appointments, gorgeous in its decorations, and noble in its purpose it will long be remembered as an event in the history of the city, an event the mention of which in after years weal) call up none but pleasing recollections.
It was well that Baltimore should be selected as the city in which the enfranchised people of the nation should celebrate the great jubilee of freedom. Other cities have had their processions and rejoicings, but by common concent the task of making the grand demonstration which should give expression to the gratitude and the joy of the whole of the colored people of the whole nation was awarded to Baltimore. Gladly was the high honor accepted and nobly did our people come up to the full measure of expeciation which their fellow countrymen put upon them. It was an undertaking which involved both labor, expense aud responsibility, but the patriotism and liberality of those to whom the duty was entrusted were equal to the demands upon both.
Not less than ten thousand colored people were in the march and ten thousand more lined the sidewalks. Every class and condition was represented-old men worn out by the toil of many years of servitude, young men whose early manhood was saved from degradation by the edicts of Freedom and a great army of boys aud girls in whose lives the auction block will not be a hideous reminiscence. The great deliverance came before they knew or understood anything about the condition from which they were saved. In all this mighty throng there were but few disorderly or drunken persons. On the thousand banners that were borne along there was not one inscription that could would the feelings of friend or foe. The was not even any direct allusion to the injustice and oppressions of the past.
The spacious avenue of Broadway between Baltimore street and Eastern avenue and the side streets debouching on the east and west were the localities selected for the formation of the grand column. Early in the morning the tide of travel turned Broadwaywards, and by ten o'clock there were fully twenty thousand people in that vicinity. The side walks were crowded with spectators, the majority colored person,s but the other race were also out in great numbers. The best of spirit seemed to prevail and there was no bad feeling exhibited.
The various commands and associations commenced to arrive about nine o'clock and form into Divisions according to the programme. They were of all characters in uniforms of a hundred different colors and devices, and bearing banners, transparencies and mottoes in endless number. The scene was lively and inspiring in the highest degree. Bodies of men were marching and countermarching on the broad avenue, blening and changing constantly in a kaleidoscopic panorama over them banners waved in the soft summer air and the rining music of a dozen bands added another inspiring effect. Marshals and Assistant Marshals galloped backward and forward and gradually the heterogeneous mass began to assume order and shape.