from the trees; and many, almost all, are found eager to earn their wages.’1
5. In a report made by the commandant of Castries
for the government of St. Lucia
, in 1822, it is stated, in proof of the intimacy between the slaves and the free blacks, that ‘many small plantations of the latter, and occupied by only one man and his wife, are better cultivated and have more land in cultivation than those of the proprietors of many slaves, and that the labor on them is performed by runaway slaves;’ thus clearly proving that even runaway slaves, under the alldepress-ing fears of discovery and oppression, labor well, because the fruits of their labor are immediately their own.2
Let us look at this subject from another point of view.
The large sum of money necessary for stocking a plantation with slaves has an inevitable tendency to place the agriculture of a slave-holding community exclusively in the hands of the wealthy, a tendency at war with practical republicanism and conflicting with the best maxims of political economy.
Two hundred slaves at $200 per head would cost in the outset $40,000. Compare this enormous outlay for the labor of a single plantation with the beautiful system of free labor as exhibited in New England
, where every young laborer, with health and ordinary prudence, may acquire by his labor on the farms of others, in a few years, a farm of his own, and the stock necessary for its proper cultivation;