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Arkwright (search for this): chapter 6
her they were intended to discourage the growth of slavery — the first by restricting its territorial extension, the second, by arresting its numerical increase. And without doubt they would have placed the evil in the way of ultimate extinction had other and far reaching causes not intervened to produce adverse social and political conditions. The first of these causes, in point of time, were certain labor-saving inventions in England, which vastly enhanced the demand for raw cotton. Arkwright's invention of the spinning machine about twenty years prior to the adoption of the Constitution, perfected by the spinning-jenny of Hargreaves, and the mule of Crompton, turned Lancashire, the historian Green says, into a hive of industry. The then rapid demand for cotton operated in time as a stimulus to its production in America. Increased productivity raised the value of slave property and slave soil. But the slow and tedious hand method of separating the fiber of the cotton bulb fr
nditions favorable to a violent explosion. Sectional differences of a political and industrial complexion, forty years had sufficed to develop. Sectional differences of a moral and social character forty years had also sufficed to generate. To kindle all those differences, all that mass of combustible feelings and forces into a general conflagration a spark only was wanted. And out of the glowing humanity of one man the spark was suddenly struck. It is curious to note that in the year 1829, the very year in which William Lloyd Garrison landed in Baltimore, and began the editorship of The Genius of Universal Emancizpation, the American Convention, or national assembly of the old State societies for the abolition of slavery, fell into desuetude. It was as if Providence was clearing the debris of an old dispensation out of the way of the new one which his prophet was beginning to herald, as if guarding against all possibility of having the new wine, then soon to be pressed from t
hich thus ministered to two of the strongest passions of mankind-avarice and ambition — was certain to excite the most intense attachment. Its safety naturally, therefore, became among the slave class an object of prime importance. Southern jealousy in this regard ultimated inevitably in Southern narrowness, Southern sectionalism, which early manifested themselves in the exclusion from lead in national affairs of Northern public men, reputed to be unfriendly to slavery. Webster as late as 1830, protested warmly against this intolerance. Like begets like. And the proscribing of anti-sl very politicians by the South, created in turn not a little sectional feeling at the North, and helped to stimulate there a consciousness of sectional differences, of antagonism of interests between the two halves of the Union. Discontent with the original basis of the Union, which had given the South its political coign of vantage, broke out first in New England. The occasion, though not the ca
y Southern statesmanship. To the preponderance of this Southern element in national legislation New England traced her misfortunes. She was opposed to the War of 1812, but was overruled to her hurt by the South. In these circumstances New England went for correcting the inequalities of the original basis of the Union, which gavn ascendency, prolonged Southern lead in national legislation. All the smouldering passions of the earlier period, of embargo, and non-intercourse, and the war of 1812, flamed suddenly and fiercely in the heart of the free States. The length and bitterness of that controversy excited the gravest apprehensions for the stabilityts early years should seek by Federal legislation to render it, as speedily and completely as possible, industrially self-dependent and selfsupporting. The war of 1812 enforced anew upon the attention of statesmen the importance of industrial independence. The war debt, together with certain governmental enterprises and expendit
e of Crompton, turned Lancashire, the historian Green says, into a hive of industry. The then rapid demand for cotton operated in time as a stimulus to its production in America. Increased productivity raised the value of slave property and slave soil. But the slow and tedious hand method of separating the fiber of the cotton bulb from the seed greatly limited the ability of the Cotton States to meet and satisfy the fast growing demand of the English manufacturers, until Eli Whitney, in 1793, by an ingenious invention solved the problem of supply for these States. The cotton gin was not long in proving itself the other half — the other hand of the spinning machine. From that year the slave interests of the South rose in market value, and its industrial system assumed unexpected importance in the economic world. The increased production of cotton led directly to increased demand for slave labor and slave soil. The increased demand for slave labor the Constitutional provisio
handicap in their struggle for an advantageous place in the New World of the nineteenth century; in their struggle with their free sisters for political leadership in the Union. But with the development of the protective principle those States fell into sore financial distress, were ground between the upper millstone of the protective system and the nether millstone of their own industrial system. Prosperity and plenty did presently disappear from that section and settled in the North. In 1828 Benton drew this dark picture of the state of the South: In place of wealth, a universal pressure for money was felt; not enough for common expenses; the price of all property down; the country drooping and languishing; towns and cities decaying, and the frugal habits of the people pushed to the verge of universal self-denial for the preservation of their family estates. He did not hesitate to charge to Federal legislation the responsibility for all this poverty and distress, for he
t of the latter. Before there could start a general movement against American slavery there must needs be an American nation. An American nation was, in the year 1787, in process of successful development. With the adoption of the Constitution, the national principle entered on a period of marvelous expansion and activity. Luded that freedom meanwhile was in total eclipse, that the antislavery sentiment was absolutely without influence. For it unquestionably inspired the Ordinance of 1787. The Northwest Territory, out of which were subsequently organized the States of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin, was thereby, forever secured to there followed the rise of a power devoted to their encouragement and protection. Three far-reaching concessions the slave States obtained in the convention of 1787, viz., the right to import slaves from Africa until 1808; the rendition of fugitive slaves escaping into the free States, and the three-fifths slave representation
atic institutions, it was natural enough that the great men who presided over its early years should seek by Federal legislation to render it, as speedily and completely as possible, industrially self-dependent and selfsupporting. The war of 1812 enforced anew upon the attention of statesmen the importance of industrial independence. The war debt, together with certain governmental enterprises and expenditures growing out of the war, was largely, if not wholly, responsible for the tariff of 1816. This act dates the rise of our American system of protection. It is curious to note that Southern men were the leaders of this new departure in the national fiscal policy. Calhoun, Clay, and Lowndes were the guiding spirits of that period of industrial ferment and activity. They little dreamt what economic evils were to fall in consequence upon the South. That section was not slow to feel the unequal action of the protective principle. The character of its labor incapacitated the South
anized the States of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin, was thereby, forever secured to the Northern idea, and free labor. Supplementary to this grand act was the Constitutional prohibition of the African slave-trade after the year 1808. Together they were intended to discourage the growth of slavery — the first by restricting its territorial extension, the second, by arresting its numerical increase. And without doubt they would have placed the evil in the way of ultimate extie of giant slave interests, there followed the rise of a power devoted to their encouragement and protection. Three far-reaching concessions the slave States obtained in the convention of 1787, viz., the right to import slaves from Africa until 1808; the rendition of fugitive slaves escaping into the free States, and the three-fifths slave representation clause of the Constitution-all of which added vastly to the security and value of this species of property, and as a consequence contributed
first to enunciate it. More than a dozen years before he was converted to it, Rev. George Bourne, in The book and slavery Irreconcilable, had shown that the system (of slavery) is so entirely corrupt that it admits of no cure but by a total and immediate abolition. For a gradual emancipation is a virtual recognition of the right, and establishes the rectitude of the practice. If it be just for one moment, it is hallowed forever; and if it be inequitable, not a day should it be tolerated. In 1824, eight years after the publication of Bourne's book, and five years before Garrison announced the doctrine in the Genius, the Rev. James Duncan maintained it, in his Treatise on slavery, with no uncertainty of sense or conviction. But neither Bourne nor Duncan had been able to effect an incarnation of the doctrine, without which the good which it aimed at could not be achieved. What they failed to effect, it is the glory of Garrison that he achieved in his own person. He was total and imm
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