though the laws of the colony, at a very early period
discouraged its increase by a special tax upon female slaves.1
, on his arrival in Virginia
, found the evil
of negro slavery engrafted on the social system, he brought with him the memorable ordinance, on which the fabric of colonial liberty was to rest, and which was interpreted by his instruction2
in a manner favorable to the independent rights of the colonists.
Justice was established on the basis of the laws of England
, and an amnesty of ancient feuds proclaimed.
As Puritanism had appeared in Virginia
, ‘needless novelties’ in the forms of worship were now prohibited.
The order to search for minerals betrays the continuance of lingering hopes of finding gold; while the injunction to promote certain kinds of manufactures was ineffectual, because labor could otherwise be more profitably employed.
The business which occupied the first session under
the written constitution, related chiefly to the encouragement of domestic industry; and the culture of silk particularly engaged the attention of the assembly.3
But legislation, though it can favor industry, cannot create it. When soil, men, and circumstances, combine to render a manufacture desirable, legislation can protect the infancy of enterprise against the unequal competition with established skill.
The culture of silk, long, earnestly, and frequently recommended to the attention of Virginia
is successfully pursued, only when a superfluity of labor exists in a redundant population.
, the first wants of life left no