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[From a private letter to Charles Sumner, by Dr. S. G. Howe, of Boston.]
I have passed ten days in New Orleans — not unprofitably, I trust — in examining the public institutions, the schools, asylums, hospitals, prisons, etc. With the exception of the first, there is little hope of amelioration.
I know not how much merit there may be in their system, but I do know that in the administration of the penal code, there are abominations which should bring down the fate of Sodom upon the city.
A man suspected of a crime and awaiting his trial, is thrust into a pandemonium filled with convicts and outlaws, where, herding and sleeping in common with hardened wretches, he breathes an atmosphere whose least evil is its physical impurity; and which is loaded with blasphemies, obscenities, and the sound of hellish orgies, intermingled with the clanking of the chains of the more furious, who are not caged, but who move about in the crowd with fettered legs and hands.
extent, and the whole arrangement of roads is entirely different.) Again, the farmer said, I am feeding his niggers.
They steal my chickens and eggs and vegetables.
I complained to the overseer about it: D — n it, he said, shoot them — we won't complain.
But then, if he shot them, he would have to pay their market value; and, besides, he had been hungry himself often, and had not the heart to interfere with the poor starving slaves.
He was soon obliged to sell out. I met him in Doniphan county, Kansas.
He is a Republican now, and thanks God for the opportunity of belonging to an open anti-slavery party.
The accounts often published of the condition of the poor whites of the South are not exaggerated, and could not well be. There is more pauperism at the South than at the North : in spite of the philosophy of the Southern socialists, who claim that slavery prevents that unfortunate condition of free society.
So, also, although Stringfellow claims that black prostitution prevent