where on a hard and unthankful soil independence and competence may be attained by all.
Free labor is perfectly in accordance with the spirit of our institutions; slave labor is a relic of a barbarous, despotic age. The one, like the firmament of heaven, is the equal diffusion of similar lights, manifest, harmonious, regular; the other is the fiery predominance of some disastrous star, hiding all lesser luminaries around it in one consuming glare.
Emancipation would reform this evil.
The planter would no longer be under the necessity of a heavy expenditure for slaves.
He would only pay a very moderate price for his labor; a price, indeed, far less than the cost of the maintenance of a promiscuous gang of slaves, which the present system requires.
In an old plantation of three hundred slaves, not more than one hundred effective laborers will be found.
Children, the old and superannuated, the sick and decrepit, the idle and incorrigibly vicious, will be found to constitute two thirds of the whole number.
The remaining third perform only about one third as much work as the same number of free laborers.
Now disburden the master of this heavy load of maintenance; let him employ free, able, industrious laborers only, those who feel conscious of a personal interest in the fruits of their labor, and who does not see that such a system would be vastly more safe and economical than the present
The slave states are learning this truth by fatal experience.
Most of them are silently writhing