Page images
PDF
EPUB
[merged small][ocr errors]

ART. IV.-DIREOT TRADE OF THE SOUTH.

[In addition to the very able and valuable papers we have from time to time published in the Review upon the subject of the Direct Trade of the South, we recommend to the attention of our readers the following, which, though strained and speculative in many respects, embodies some sound and wholesome truths. There is a propriety in referring to such papers on the eve of another Convention at Memphis for the promotion of southern trade, and our only regret is that we cannot be present and take part in its deliberations, as we have made it a point hitherto to do.]

The Committee of Ways and Means, stances, that they should be confined, reto whom was referred the bill incorpo- strained, punished, and, at times, even rating the Alabama Direct Trade and destroyed. They, too, like individuals, in Exchange Company, have duly consid- obtaining or making locations on the ered the same, and believing that there earth's surface, have advantages or disis no one subject in which all our citi. advantages more or less suited to their zens have a deeper or more lasting in- peculiar mental, moral or physical orgaterest than a speedy and radical change nization, properisities, habits and occuin our import trade, beg leave to make pations. The country we now occupy, the following report:

before it was discovered by the EuroThe skilful and prudent merchant, in pean race, was admirably suited in all selecting a site for extensive, profitable respects to the wild, savage, roving, deand durable commerce, will examine structive propensities of the Indian. carefully the whole surrounding country, By nature free and idle, he could neithconsider well its climates, soils and er be civilized nor enslaved, without deseasons; its valleys, hills and moun- stroying his existence or happiness. In tains; its vegetable, animal and miner- selecting a place of residence, all he deal productions; its lakes, rivers and sired was a wilderness to rove in, and roads; its bays, seas, gulfs and oceans, game to gratify his destructive propenwith their peculiar currents, tides and sities and furnish him food and raiment. winds; look well to the natural dispo- The African, when left to himself, can sition, capacity, occupation, wealth, only exist and be happy under a tropical habits and customs, opinions, political, sun, where summer is continual, clothing religious and moral, of the whole sur- not a necessity, and food can be obtained rounding population. His interest is by little effort from the spontaneous proidentical with the greatest prosperity and ductions of the country. Freedom to him, tranquillity of all his customers. He is, in a cold climate, is a curse, compared to therefore, the natural ally of the best slavery under an intelligent master, in a and most stable government.

mild one. In their native country they Civilization, the arts and sciences, first are a nation of human beings at rest, appeared in the East. Their course has and likely to continue so, until highly been westward; as the world is but a stimulated by some race different in great national race-ground, in process of physical organization. If, by pestilence, time they will again reach their start- the whole race in their own country ing point.

were suddenly cut off, Europe and The Israelites, Grecians, Romans and America would only feel it in an ad. Spaniards have exerted a powerful in- vance on ivory and a few spices. The fluence on the destinies of mankind, energetic white European or American They were all extensive slaveholding requires for the full development of his countries in their days of progress and capacity and disposition, a country pospower. Nations, like individuals, have sessing all the natural elements of the their birth, infancy, manhood and old three great pursuits of civilized man, age; like them, they have their peculi- agriculture, commerce, and manufacarities, their inferior or superior mental, tures. That country combining all these moral and physical power and physical or- in the most extensive and compact form, ganization; like them, they have their in the most convenient location, is, above fevers, consumptions, epidemics, and all others, the best calculated to promote chronic infections, and the good of man- his own happiness, and enable him to be kind requires, under certain circum- useful to surrounding nations.

[graphic]
[ocr errors]

The white European, in the course of terial and government skill, to hers. his progress and enterprise, discovered She has a home population of twentythe American continent, on parts of seven millions on a territory about the which the attempt has been made by size of Georgia and Florida, with adlegislation to bring the Indian and Afri- vantages in position, soil, climate, mincan up to a political equality with the eral and vegetable productions, of not white man. Political equality neces- more than one half of theirs. Her sarily brings about social equality; social colonial dominions are scattered over equality produces amalgamation. This every quarter of the globe in all latipolitical and social equality, with the tudes. Within them she has large posconsequent amalgamation, has brought sessions, devoted to the culture of coton premature consumption and rapid de- ton, rice, sugar and indigo. Every efcay in the whole political and social fort within her skill and power has mass, which threatens to bring about pre- been exerted to excel our country in the mature dissolution and lasting imbecili- production of cotton. Notwithstanding

her cotton region contains a population In our portion of the continent we of more than one hundred millions of have, so far, followed a different course. free laborers, which she calls her subWe expelled from amongst us the In- jects, who are employed at mere nominal dian, and kept the African entirely un- wages, so far, all her efforts have proved der our control and direction. We, al. abortive, and must, regardless of soil or though in infancy as to the ordinary age climate, unless she establishes our sysof a government, are already a giant in tem of African slave labor. The consephysical power, with strides so long and quence is, that she is dependent on our rapid as to strike with wonder and admi- slaveholding states for a supply of cotration all surrounding nations.

ton, on which, to a great extent, depends There exists in our system of African her commercial and manufacturing slavery a powerful tendency to elevate, prosperity. In order to obtain commer. and keep free and independent, the cial preference in the markets of Europe white race. Every citizen within these and America, in favor of her colonial states sees slavery by color, by name, commodities, she calls them free-labor and nature, and from the time he can productions, and, by this device, has reflect, sets himself above a slave. So succeeded in humbugging a numerous long as lands are low and labor profita- class of short-sighted customers in both ble, there is no necessity for the poor countries. She has a company called white man to become dependent or a the “East India Company," who rule slave. The poor white man and the and govern her extensive East India slave owner are alike interested in possessions. From the force of circumcheap lands and high wages; their in- stances, her Canadian colonies are goterests are, therefore, identical. There verned with more liberality and justice is a powerful tendency in all republican than any other portion of her extensive states like our free states, to run into the dominions. She fears their revolt and European system of high taxes to favor our assistance. Her public debt is particular classes. As population be- eight hundred millions pounds sterling, a comes dense, capital puts down the very considerable portion of which was wages of labor, and can enslave the la- created to abolish African slavery in her borer.

West India Islands, and has resulted in Great Britain is the first commercial the ruin of the whites and blacks on nation of the age, unless we may ex- those islands, and a destruction of their cept our own country. Her commercial commercial prosperity. To pay the inpower, for many years, enabled her to terest on this enormous public debt, as be mistress of the seas. She is now the the taxes are levied most heavily on the first manufacturing country of the laboring classes and all goes to the world. On commerce and manufac- higher classes, a large majority of her tures, all her present political power and population are in a much worse state of greatness depend. Any power capable slavery than the African race are in the of striking à death-blow at her com. slave holding states of our Union. To merce and manufactures, must necessari- pay this tax, and obtain a scanty supply ly be her superior in any military con- of food and raiment, requires constant test waged with equal campaign ma- labor. If affliction, by disease or old

Tendency of African Slavery-Great Britain and her Colonies. 439

age, disqualifies any from capacity to ment, that they should be opposed, labor, they are thrown out of doors, checked or stopped. Great Britain paupers, upon public charity. Of this made a second attempt to subjugate or class there are now, in Great Britain, check our power, in her last war with over three millions; and in Europe not us. Failing in both instances, she now less than twenty millions; a living fun- seeks to weaken us by attacking and gus upon European governments. The urging others to attack, our system of accumulated miseries flowing from their African slavery. system of government, keep the popula. There are four prominent, grand divi. tion in a feverish revolutionary spirit. sions within our present extensive boundTo preserve law and order, and collect aries: our commercial and manufacturthe heavy taxes, requires in England a ing states, with their principal outlets standing army of one hundred thousand through Massachusetts, New York, and men, stationed all over her territory; yet Pennsylvania; the agricultural states, outbreaks and insurrections are common with their principal outlets through occurrences. Notwithstanding all this, Maryland, Virginia, North and South it is said Great Britain has the freest Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, and best government in Europe. We and Texas, on the Atlantic and Gulf know heavy taxes, and standing armies coast; California, with the Bay of San to collect them and enforce obedience Francisco, and Oregon, with the Colum. to unequal laws, abject slavery of the bia River, as their principal outlets on masses under the delusive name of free the Pacific. laborers, and an uncertainty in the fu- Whatever may be said of California ture to every one, are general over Eu- gold, Oregon's farming capacity, or comrope. The wealthy have no security mercial and manufacturing prosperity from poverty by revolution, and the poor of the New-England or Northern States, no sécurity from the cannon, the sword, a close examination into the Southern halter or dungeon, for revolt.

Atlantic, Gulf, and Mississippi Valley Great Britain, by unequal and inex- States, must convince every one that pedient laws, forced upon her North there lie, congregated together, in the American colonies the alternative of most compact form, all the elements, in abject submission to unauthorized ag. the highest degree, of agricultural, comgressions, or manly resistance in defence mercial, and manufacturing superiority. of their most sacred rights. After ten The general progress and power of the years' unregarded remonstrances, hope Union requires that the resources of this was lost, and the sword drawn; the con- section be wisely and skilfully directed. test appeared an unequal one, but sevenCommerce is the heart of circulation years' war ended in the complete inde. in making exchanges of agricultural and pendence of our original thirteen colo- manufacturing productions to the whole nies. It was a great loss of political population. Any policy of the governpower and sectional aggrandiżement to ment or habits of the community that the mother country. To the people of has a tendency to turn commerce out of the United States, and many others, it its natural channels, within the same has been a far greater gain. They government, is a drawback on the heal. abolished the British system of govern- thy and vigorous action of the whole ment, which holds the citizens to be system. subjects and subordinate to the King and Our navigable rivers and lakes have other departments of the government, their bluffs, which are natural landings. and made the citizens of the respective To those bluffs roads can be made, with states sovereign, and the governor more or less labor, of higher or lower President, and legislative bodies all grades. When made, they are more subordinate to the will of the people, convenient and less expensive for a cerproperly expressed through their con- tain surrounding population, as highventions.

ways and landings, through which to The love of power and aggrandize- send off or dispose of their surplus proment has been in all ages, amongst in- ductions, than any other road or landing. dividuals and nations, prominent and The same landing and road is also the constant. They are powerful elements most convenient and least expensive, in human progress, and it is only when naturally, through which to obtain their unjust means are used for their attain- purchases of other articles.

Our sea or gulf coasts have their natu- Alabama, Florida, Georgia, the Caro ral landings, all of which possess their linas, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, relative advantages on account of clic New-York and Massachusetts, also hav. mate, position, accessibility from the ing natural limits to the amount of trade land side by navigable rivers or lakes, that for the interest of general populaand the cheapness and low grade with tion would naturally flow to them. At which rail-roads or canals may be con- this time the most important are Boston, structed, leading from them into the in- New-York, and Philadelphia, in the terior, and the capacity of the popula- commercial and manufacturing states; tion for production. These landings Baltimore, Charleston, Mobile, New-Oralso have their relative advantages in leans, and Galveston, are the most prom. bays, harbors, ocean currents and winds, inent in the agricultural states. In the leading off in the most convenient di- two sections there are Boston and New rection for commercial purposes. They York as the principal outlets for the are the great landings of foreign and Northern and Eastern States, New-Or. coastwise commerce-the landings for leans and Mobile as the most prominent our exports and imports, with the same natural outlets in the agricultural states. convenience and pecuniary advantage The omitted table A, shows the cir. to the whole community, in having all culation of bank paper in each state, the their foreign supplies directly landed at specie to redeem it, the exports and imthem, for all those whose convenience ports of each, their population, square or interest requires their exports to be miles, and public debt, an examination landed there, as the small landings on of which will readily show the most unthe rivers or lakes. A system of com- natural and injurious system of trade merce, to be most convenient and least that could well exist amongst intelligent expensive to the whole community, citizens living in a government of equalmust necessarily have all its import ity and justice. This table at once shows agents or merchants at their export land- that in the agricultural states all great ings or cities. Any other system is un- interests are withering under the unnanatural, inexpedient and ruinous to tural and extremely unhealthy system every interest in the whole community, of our foreign trade. The cities in the and a continual drawback on the aggre- Northern and Eastern States, during the gate prosperity and wealth of the coun- year ending June 30th, 1850, exported try at large. The first inquiry for every $70,249,809, and imported $155,291,737, class of every section in every state is, showing that by our present system of what seaport landing or city on the gulf trade they received over eighty-five or coast can be reached at the least ex- millions imports more than a natural pense on products—first, by natural high- system of trade would entitle them to. ways, as navigable rivers, lakes, &c.; The Southern and grain-growing secondly, by canals or rail-roads, at the Western States exported through their least expense of labor and capital. That own ports $81,115,702, and imported city, then, that can be approached with $21,395,805, showing that they imported exportable products with the least ex- near sixty millions less than a proper pense, will be the one naturally through trade would justify. On this large which all the imports should come. To amount the consumers of foreign goods determine, then, the best system of trade pay, to a great extent, importers' profits, for the whole population of every section, jobbers' profits, double shipping, storage, we must divide the country into its nat- drayage, and wharfage. The retail ural divisions, and assign to each its merchants spend double the time and natural amount of business. If we esta- money in going to make their purchases blish our entire foreign and domestic as would be necessary under a well regutrade on this natural basis, it will ad- lated system of Direct Trade. Under vance most rapidly the aggregate wealth this doubly expensive system, the retail and prosperity of the Union at large, and merchants cannot sell foreign goods to enable us in the shortest time to excel consumers on an average at less than all other countries. The present popu- double the original foreign cost abroad. lation of the United States, on the At- The consumers of foreign goods in the lantic and Gulf slope of the Rocky southern and western states pay not Mountains, have for their natural out- less than twenty millions of dollars annulets cities or sites in Texas, Louisiana, ally more for their goods than would

New-England StatesForeign and Domestic Trade.

[ocr errors]

be necessary under a properly regu- citizens, following such a change. Of lated system of Direct Trade. This what use are rail-roads without freights twenty millions, however, is but a por- and passengers ? Where the necessity tion of the loss to the South and West. for banks, without a use for their circuThe Southern and Western States, as lation or accommodation ? How can classed off in table A, make annually for agriculture and manufactures prosper, export one hundred and fifty millions without commercial facilities ? On reworth of produce, which, by the com- ference to the table, it will be seen that pletion of a few of the rail-roads now in New Orleans, which exports nearly as progress, would naturally find its way great an amount as New-York, and out at southern ports, and by such a sys. should export double, only imports ten tem as can and should be adopted by millions to New York's one hundred and every southern seaport would, as soon ten millions. As New-Orleans and Moas in full operation, put their import bile, and New-York and Boston, are the trade up to one hundred and fifty mils greatest ports naturally for the two seclions of dollars, with all the advantage- tions, we will present a view of their ous consequences, to all classes of our trade and banking :

Exports. Importo. Bank Circulation. Specie. New-Orleans and Mobile......$48,650,208... $11,625,861... $7,386,000... $8,503,000 New-York and Boston....... 63,394,563... 141,498,208... 40,306,000... 14,370,000

It appears from this statement, that stocks, as well as population and politiwhile New Orleans and Mobile bank cal power, it becomes one of the highest capital is making about five per cent. on consideration to all classes. To make its specie, New-York and Boston capital the regulation properly and understandis making over twenty. For the ten ingly, it requires a very close scrutiny years passed, New Orleans has not been into every state and section of our widely able to keep out as great a paper circu- extended country now settled. lation as she had specie. New-York and The New England States are five in Boston, by their monopolizing, to a great number. They contain 63,326 square extent, the import trade, and, conse- miles, or a fraction over the size of Virquently, domestic trade, from artificial ginia. They are naturally by far the consequences, are also monopolizing the poorest five states in the Union as to soil, profits on banking. As the heavy pay- climate, mineral and vegetable producments are due to New York and Boston, tions. They contain a population of as fast as they make collections, should 2,727,397, engaged mostly in manufacthey be in Louisiana or Alabama bank tures, commerce and the fisheries. A paper, specie, or exchange on London, large rnajority of their citizens have, for Liverpool, Boston, or New-York is re- many years, been the advocates of high quired, and their paper returned on them. taxes, extravagant expenditures of the As their paper is not, therefore, ulti- public funds, and government protection mately received in payment for debts to favored classes. The government due to New-York and Boston, there is allows them fishing bounties, tonnage not the same demand for it as a circu. duties on their shipping, and protection lating medium in the interior. But the to their domestic manufactures. These amount of indebtedness being greatly advantages, with their large import beyond the natural limits of New York trade, which naturally belongs to southand Boston trade, and their bank paper ern cities, with their industry and ingebeing received in payment, gives them nuity and economy, have made them more than their natural field of circula, increase very rapidly in wealth and popution. This applies to all the states of lation. They have a constitutional the Union that import less than their chronic infection of the isms, which are natural limits, as well as to Louisiana and as dangerous to good government and Alabama.

morality as Asiatic cholera to individuAs the proper adjustment of our foreign als; and more contagious. Their leadand domestic trade, on the principles of ing statesmen opposed the acquisition of economy laid down, involves the value Louisiana, Texas annexation, and the of city, town, and country property, agri- Mexican war; have been in favor of cultural and manufacturing prosperity, confining our population to narrow lim. the profits on bank, rail-road and canal its, the consequence of which would be

« PreviousContinue »