Appendix C, p. 31.The number of fugitive slaves, from all the States, as I learn from Mr. J . C. G. Kennedy, the intelligent superintendent of the census bureau, was, in the year 1850, 1,011, being about one to every 3,165, the entire number of slaves at that time being 3,200,864, a ratio of rather more than 1/30 of one per cent. This very small ratio was diminished in 1860. By the last census, the whole number of slaves in the United States was 3,949,557, and the number of escaping fugitives was 803, being a trifle over 1/50 of one per cent. Of these it is probable that much the greater part escaped to the places of refuge in the South, alluded to in the text. At all events, it is well known that escaping slaves, reclaimed in the free States, have in almost every instance been restored. There is usually some difficulty in reclaiming fugitives of any description, who have escaped to another jurisdiction. In most of the cases of fugitives from justice, which came under my cognizance as United States Minister in London, every conceivable difficulty was thrown in my way, and sometimes with success, by the counsel for the parties whose extradition was demanded under the Webster-Ashburton treaty. The French Ambassador told me, that he had made thirteen unsuccessful attempts to procure the surrender of fugitives from justice, under the extradition treaty between the two governments. The difficulty generally grew out of the difference of the jurisprudence of the two countries, in the definition of crimes, rules of evidence, and mode of procedure. The number of blacks living in Upper Canada and assumed to be all from the United States, is sometimes stated as high as forty thousand, and is constantly referred to, at the South, as showing the great number of fugitives. But it must be remembered that the manumissions far exceed in number the escaping fugitives. I learn from Mr. Kennedy that while in 1860 the number of fugitives was but 803, that of manumissions was 3,010. As the manumitted slaves are compelled to leave the States where they are set free, and a small portion only emigrate to Liberia, at least nine-tenths of this number are scattered through the northern States and Canada. In the decade from 1850 to 1860, it is estimated that 20,000 slaves were manumitted, of whom three-fourths probably joined their brethren in Canada. This supply alone, with the natural increase on the old stock and the new comers, will account for the entire population of the province. A very able and instructive discussion of the statistics of this subject will be found in the Boston Courier of the 9th of July. It is there demonstrated that the assertion that the Northern States got rid of their slaves by selling them to the South, is utterly unsupported by the official returns of the census.
Appendix D, p. 37.In his message to the Confederate Congress of the 29th April last, Mr. Jefferson Davis presents a most glowing account of the prosperity of the peculiar institution of the South. He states, indeed, that it was “imperilled” by Northern agitation, but he does not affirm (and the contrary, as far as I have observed, is strenuously maintained at the South) that its progress has been checked or its stability in the slightest degree shaken. I think I have seen statements by Mr. Senator Hunter of Virginia, that the institution of slavery has been benefited and its interests promoted, since the systematic agitation of the subject began; but I am unable to lay my hand on the speech, in which, if I recollect rightly, this view was taken by the distinguished senator. I find the following extracts from the speeches of two distinguished southern senators, in “The Union,” a spirited paper published at St. Cloud, Minnesota:
It was often said at the North, and admitted by candid statesmen at the South, that anti-slavery agitation strengthened rather than weakened slavery. Here are the admissions of Senator Hammond on this point, in a speech which he delivered in South Carolina, October 24, 1858:-- And what then (1833) was the state of opinion in the South? Washington had emancipated his slaves. Jefferson had bitterly denounced the system, and had done all that he could to destroy it. Our Clays, Marshalls, Crawfords, and many other prominent Southern men, led off in the colonization scheme. The inevitable effect in the South was that she believed slavery to be an evil — weakness — disgraceful — nay, a sin. She shrunk from the discussion of it. She cowered under every threat. She attempted to apologize, to excuse herself under the plea — which was true — that England had forced it upon her; and in fear and trembling she awaited a doom that she deemed inevitable. But a few bold spirits took the question up — they compelled the South to investigate it anew and thoroughly, and what is the result? Why, it would be difficult to find now a Southern man who feels the system to be the lightest burden on his conscience; who does not, in fact, regard it as an equal advantage to the master and the slave, elevating both, as wealth, strength, and power, and as one of the main pillars and controlling influences of modern civilization, and who is not now prepared to maintain it at every hazard. Such have been the happy results of this abolition discussion. “So far our gain has been immense from this contest, savage and malignant as it has been.” And again he says:--The rock of Gibraltar does not stand so firm on its basis as our slave system. For a quarter of a century it has borne the brunt of a hurricane as fierce and pitiless as ever raged. At the North, and in Europe, they cried “ havoc,” and let loose upon us all the dogs of war. And how stands it mow? Why, in this very quarter of a century our slaves have doubled in numbers, and each slave has more than doubled in value. The very negro who, as a prime laborer, would have brought $400 in 1828, would now, with thirty more years upon him, sell for $800.Equally strong admissions were made by A. H. Stephens, now Vice-President of the “Confederacy,” in that carefully prepared speech which he delivered in Georgia in July, 1859, on the occasion of retiring from public life. He then said:--Nor am I of the number of those who believe that we have sustained any injury by these agitations. It is true, we were not responsible for them. We were not the aggressors. We acted on the defensive. We repelled assault, calumny, and aspersion, by argument, by reason, and truth. But so far from the institution of African slavery in our section being weakened or rendered less secure by the discussion, my deliberate judgment is that it has been greatly strengthened and fortified--strengthened and fortified not only in the opinions, convictions, and consciences of men, but by the action of the Government.