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ments shall not be made, until the French government shall have received satisfac-
An attempt was made in the Chamber to date the payment
“ Les paiemens à valoir sur la somme de 25 millions de francs, ne seront effectués qu'autant que le gouvernement des Etats-Unis n'aura porté atteinte à la dignité et aux intérêts de la France."
“ The payments on account of the sum of twenty-five millions of francs shall be carried into execution only on condition, that no attack shall have been made by the government of the United States on the dignity and interests of France."
As the amendment of General Valazé was considered by the ministry equivalent in its principle and spirit to the foregoing section of the original bill, and as the intention of that was to produce 66 an accommodation honourable alike to both parties, we presume that no difficulty will be found in complying with its requisitions; particularly since we do not perceive any intimation that the explanations which shall ensue are to be laid before the Chamber, as a condition precedent to the payment of the money: The Duc de Broglie, with a majority of one hundred and fifty, need not fear the threats of M. Mauguin. An intimation has been made that this explanation, whatever it may be, is to become matter of legislation at home. We cannot conceive how or wherefore. It is a matter of Executive consideration entirely, until in the contingency of its rejection, (which in the actual state of things can hardly be anticipated,) the President sees fit to communicate the negotiation to Congress, or that body deems it proper to inquire into it
. As to the suggestion of an apology, or such profound and circumstantial retraction as shall meet the approbation of the press of the French capital, we presume the cabinet of Louis Philippe are too well informed of the American temper to entertain it for an instant. The constituted chief of a great nation may apologize for wrong, but not for the gratification of wounded pride, or to secure a pecuniary right. We cannot reason, however, upon mere hypothetical degradation, believing, as we do, that the respective governments will be prepared, in a. spirit of candour and conciliation, to remove the last impediment from the amicable intercourse of two nations, formed by nature for the closest and most profitable communion, and to find their reward in the increased and reciprocal prosperity of both.
Art. X.-A Statistical View of the Commerce of the United States
of America, including also an account of Banks, Manufactures, Internal Trade, and Improvements; together with that of the Revenues and Expenses of the General Government: accompanied with numerous Tables. By Timothy Pitkin. 1835.
We should prefer to have seen prefixed to this work the shorter title of “Statistics of the United States of America,” for reasons that may be given hereafter. In the meantime we would observe, that if Americans are justly accused of being boastful of their country, this is not a book that is calculated to cure them of the fault-for it is hard to close its pages without some very definite feelings of pride in the consciousness of being part of a nation that is making such gigantic strides in the race where all are struggling. To be the peaceful citizen of a peaceful empire, in extent equal to almost all Europe; greater in resources than that of Alexander or Cæsar; and accumulating wealth with a rapidity such as conquerors never dreamed of-is, to say the least, a very comfortable feeling. How long, indeed, it may be given us as a united people to run this race of unexampled prosperity; how soon, on the other hand, our Union may become matter of history to point the moral or adorn the tale of the passions of rulers or the madness of the people—these no doubt are “ sedative” questions, well calculated, like the thought of disease and death with the individual man, to temper the self gratulations of health and fortune: but still they are but anticipations, and cannot be expected, either with nations or individuals, to make them either sad or blind to their peculiar blessings. How long, therefore, our course, depends upon a good Providence—or, looking to human means, on the care we take to build our prosperity upon virtue and knowledge. How rapid it has been is a question of fact, and to that alone the work before us invites our attention. Now, in what section of the world shall we find another people of whom it might be said that in the interval between two editions of the same statistical work, by the same hand, the following changes were to be noted—“increase of population, 6,000,000"-"new territory purchased and paid for, $5,000,000”—“2,500 miles of canal completed, at an expense of $65,000,000”—“1,600 miles of rail-road, costing $30,000,000”—“ public debt wholly paid off, amounting to $120,000,000”—“no direct taxes," " no excise,”—and yet the treasury so overflowing that custom-house duties have to be reduced fifteen or twenty per cent., lest the body politic should fall into a plethora and die of surplus treasure! What would an Englishman or Frenchman think of such a budget? and yet all this is true of the United States—between the years 1817 and 1835, the date of the first and second editions of the work before us—so that after VOL. XVII.-NO. 34.
all, until the nations of Europe can say as much, we must be permitted, in spite of foreign majors and captains and heroines, to boast a little.
If, indeed, we took credit to ourselves for effecting all this—ascribing it to our superior wisdom, skill, or national virtue-we should certainly evince as little sagacity as we did modesty; but if we explain it, as every common sense American does, into our unprecedented external advantages—as being a people at once infant and mature with the vigour of youth and the experience of age-applying the skill of the old world to the productive energies of the new-and starting free and unshackled in the race of wealth-claiming for our people no other merit than that of energetic and ready enterprise, and for our government no peculiar excellence beyond suitableness to those whom it represents, but can hardly be said to govern, and whom, consequently, it leaves free to the dictates of individual clear-sighted interest-thus explained, we see neither folly nor falsehood
nor conceit in the assertion that the United States stands, as a nation, without a parallel either in ancient or modern times“ instantia singularis”-“ a solitary instance," such as time has never before brought forth, and probably never again will the surface of the globe offering no equal second locality for such an extended experiment.
But while we are thus bold for our country, we are far from challenging, with all his merits, quite as much for our author. We cannot say we pride ourselves upon the work that yet has made us proud. Still, let us not be misunderstood. It is not but that the book is a good one, nay the very best that is to be met with, and one that every intelligent inquiring American should possess; nevertheless it falls so far short of its own high arguments, or rather it seems to be written with so little true conception of what a great national statistical work should be, (a character claimed for it, we presume, by its author,) that we are tempted, before entering into its subject matter, to give somewhat at large our notions of what he should have aimed to make it.
In the first place, such a work should have been what this is not-free from all political or party feeling—and this we say, not in the spirit of party ourselves, for in most points we agree in sentiment with our author--but because “non erat his locus"-this was not the place for the display of it. As Horace of old charged upon the poet, "you have painted the cypress tree well, but what business had it in the shipwreck”--so do we say to Mr. Pitkin, you have argued well the cause of the Bank, and declaimed eloquently against Bonaparte-you have pleaded boldly the cause of internal improvement, and plausibly for the tariff--but what has all that to do with simple facts? Can opinions alter figures, or affect the summing up of an account? Will not a 5 continue to be a 5, whatever you think about it; and is not the only effect of showing that you
would rather have it a 6, to excite the suspicion that the wish may. sometimes guide the pen? Now, such want of candour or integrity. we are far from insinuating. We only say that it is not wise in our author thus to disparage his own statements, by mixing up his opinions with them-nor, we would add, is it right thus to turn a science of facts into one of speculation. It was a saying of Swift “ the numerals are neither whig nor tory," but then the danger is that they will be judged of by their company, and if they wear the badge of one party, will at least be suspected by the other. Among the parts of the present work, which thus offend and lose value by this admixture, we would mention particularly Chapter XI., on Manufactures, in which the facts seem to be valued but as material for an argument in favour of “high duties and the protecting system.” Now, this should not be. The time is past when politics, political economy, and statistics, stood jumbled together as one multifarious science: however cognate, they are now recognised as distinct, and should be so trated.
The second point we would require in a national work of this kind is, that it cover the whole ground of inquiry. The statistics of a country comprehend all classes of facts which bear upon its prosperity and advancement. The writer, therefore, who takes up a partial view of the subject, gives -o the reader, by necessity, a false one-since he leaves out some on the elements of national condition. It is an account current, in which all the items are not entered. How, then, can any one strike the just balance! Against this charge, our author's defence would doubtless be, that he has dóne all that he intended-all that in his title-page he promised. Our rejoinder is, he was bound to intend and promise all that the nature of his subject demanded. He may have come into the field a volunteer, but, once entered, he is no longer free to choose the extent of his service. The public has a right to require that he treat the matter before him in such way as to do it justice, and every purchaser of his book has a right to complain if he do not.
"Tis here we lay down this law, not for every statistical inquirer -for in mental as in manual labour, there must be a class of operatives who work upon parts for others to put together--but we lay it down for such as our author-master-workmen from whose hands we look for the complete and perfect article. Now this, Mr. P. has not chosen to give us, and we say it is a defect, not in the execution, perhaps, but in the conception of his work. Standing as he does first, if not alone, in this department of American science, he should have imaged to himself a higher scheme, and not have forced his readers to look elsewhere for such important data as the following, viz: “Education,” “ Colleges.” “Common Schools," "Libraries," "Religious denominations," " Penitentiary System,” “ Poor Laws"_"the Indian races," " Immigration," "Bills of Mortality,” “Funds,” “Stocks," "Naval and Military Force,"
&c. &c., not to mention others very slightly touched upon, such as the " Home Trade," " the Mint," " Post Office," &c. Now all these, in our opinion, should have been in the volume, and might have been so without
addition to its bulk, since more than room sufficient would have been gained by leaving out discussions which have no business in it. Not only, too, should these and many such have been added, but the whole, we think, should have been preceded by the topography or rather physical geography of our country, on a knowledge of which depends a right estimate of what we have already done, and what remains for us to do. With this view we would have both the natural and artificial resources of our country fully developed by maps and plansmits mineral treasures-its natural and artificial lines of communication—its cultivated and wild lands, with their varying density of population, all speaking to the eye by lines and bounds, and lights and shadows, and conveying to the mind information inore precise, and at the same time more impressive, than words or figures can give.
As illustrative of this species of statistical map, we would refer our readers to a comparative population map of the world, prefixed to Powlett Scrope's Political Economy, (London,) where the relative density of population is indicated by a lighter or deeper shade --the object of it was to overthrow the Malthusian theory--the effect of it was that of a most conclusive argument. The canal and rail-road map, recently published by D. K. Minor, New York, will give an idea of the value of such visible delineation in another department—and as to our mineral treasures of coal, iron, lead, gold, &c., it is easy to imagine how much clearer notions of them we should have from a well coloured mineralogical map, than from any description. We are happy to find that our state governments are beginning to appreciate the value of accurate knowledge upon these subjects. North and South Carolina set the example, several years ago; a geological survey under authority having been made of the former by Professor Olmstead, of the latter by Professor Vanuxen. The next was that of Massachusetts, under the direction of Professor Hitchcock. A similar survey of Tennessee is now in progress by Dr. Frost-while New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and at last New York, have taken legislative steps to effect the same. Maryland is also going on—and Congress has already received a report of progress from the geologist* appointed by them at their former session. This department of statistics, therefore, need not henceforward be a blank.
Our last demand, and one in which we must say the present work fails to satisfy us, notwithstanding its great mass of valuable materials, is arrangement. Now, this we consider to be essential. If the first element of a statistic work be accuracy, the second cer
* George W, Fetherstonhaugh, Esq.