Letter from A.F. Williams to Lewis Tappan
In his letter to Lewis Tappan, A.F. Williams reports that the Africans "have been constantly exposed to the rain which has fallen in great abundance," but he has tended to them and they are well now. He ensures that when the house that is being erected is finished, the Africans will be less exposed to the rain and they can exercise without "going into the street or [being] unnecessarily exposed to the bad influences of those few among us who would glory in their ruin." Williams states that he wishes John T. Norton would "put his shoulder to the wheel" and assist more with the Africans. Williams writes about the doubts which have been expressed regarding the exhibition of the Africans in New York and claims that his fears regarding this have vanished. He and Samuel Deming took Cinque and Kinna to a county anti-slavery meeting where he was able to observe their overall interest. According to Williams Cinque and Kinna were invited to speak during the meeting, he states that "Kinna arose in a very dignified manner & with great deliberation" and spoke in English. "Cinque then arose & faced the chairman & began his speech in Mendi, then spoke to the audience in a most eloquent manner," while Kinna interpreted his speech. Williams comments that he is "satisfied that with proper care & caution these brethren will make an impression on the minds of those who hear them" and suggests how to structure exhibitions of the Africans. It is mentioned in his letter that "When Bro. [Theodore] Weld was here, he & Bro. B agreed to take Yabboy [Yaboi] & not Grabbeau [Grabeau] as you write for the reason that he Yabboy sings & reads well & Grabbeau does not."