Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 23.djvu/249

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or who is but one thirty-second part colored, is not black. Of the six millions of blacks, "black" according to the United States census and the decisions of the courts, perhaps nearly two millions are of a mixed color, more white than black. Many of them are descendants of the most distinguished white blood in the history of the nation. To what race do they belong? By State laws and the decision of the Supreme Court they belong to the negro or the American-African race. By the law of nature they belong, either to the Anglo-American race, or are a race within themselves. It is no longer a doubtful question; their constant increase in numbers shows that they are engenesic, and capable of maintaining within themselves a race of their own. Can such a people as this mixed race, imbued with the instincts, capabilities, and ambitions common to their white blood, be forever thrust back upon the negro race? Is the race-conflict so irrepressible in this country that they can not ever be merged in the white race? Or is it wiser for science and the law to recognize, in the process of the formation of races, that they are strictly a distinct and intermediate race? Already, in proportion to numbers, as many of them stand as high in intellectual development as white persons of the same class. And as the great mass of mankind, white and black, must ever be laborers and followers, and as all the avenues of trade and commerce, learning, culture, and civil and political distinctions, are open to all, this "mixed race" must eventually become sharp competitors for the supremacy in this country. What the result may be to this republic is a problem for the publicist, the scientist, and the statesman to solve.


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EVOLUTION.

By H. H. BOYESEN.

I.

BROAD were the bases of all being laid
On pillars sunk in the unfathomed deep
Of universal void and primal sleep.
Some mighty will there was, in sooth, that swayed
The misty atoms which inhabited
The barren, unillumined fields of space;
A breath, perchance, that whirled the mists apace,
And shook the heavy indolence that weighed
Upon the moveless vapors. Oh, what vast,
Resounding undulations of effect
Awoke that breath! What dizzying aeons passed
Ere yet a lichen-patch the bare rock flecked!
Thus rolls with boom of elemental strife
The ancestry e'en of the meanest life.