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for the relief of Antwerp. From this time the courage of the besieged failed them, and the magistracy of the town endeavoured in vain to raise the spirits of the populace, upon whom the present necessity more peculiarly pressed, by distant hopes. Until now, they had always obtained bread, though at a dear rate; but by degrees the provisions drew towards a elose, and famine visibly approached. They still had hopes of being able to maintain the town long enough to allow them to reap the corn which grew between the outer works and the town, and which was already in full ear; but ere that time arrived, the enemy were in possession of all the external defences of the town, and had appropriated the whole harvest to themselves. At last, the neighbouring confederate
town of Mechlin fell into the enemy's hands, and with it vanished their last hope of succour from Brabant. As there was no longer any means of increasing the stock of provisions, the only course left was to diminish the number of the consumers. All persons incapable of assisting, all strangers, and even women and children, must have been banished from the town; but this project was too revolting to humanity to be carried into effect. Another plan, that of driving out the Catholic inhabitants, inflamed them so much, that it almost led to an open mutiny. And thus St. Aldegonde saw himself compelled to yield to the stormy impatience of the populace; and on the 17th August, 1585, to make proposals to the Duke of Parma for the surrender of the town.
SECOND LETTER FROM AN AMERICAN FARMER TO A FRIEND IN EDINBURGH.
MY DEAR SIR,
You are aware, I presume, of the daily increasing importance of the question concerning the Blacks in this quarter of the world. It begins to be too evident, that this baselycalumniated race must, sooner later, form a powerful nation in the West Indies. Our slave-owners are beginning to express their fears and weaknesses most indiscreetly, and so, I think, are yours: both will, most probably, bring on the final catastrophe, by the very means they take to prevent it. This is nothing new in the annals of tyranny and injustice. A good deal of interest has been excited here lately, by the emigration of some of the free Blacks to Hayti; and, partly in consequence of this, Dr -, whose property adjoins mine, a man of talent and erudition, liberal in his views, and every way calculated for such an undertaking, went to Hayti, at his own expense, last winter, to visit the country, and to ascertain the state of the people. He travelled about 1000 miles over the French part of the island. He had letters to Boyer, Inginac, and others, and was highly gratified with all he saw. His manuscript is now nearly ready for
near Philadelphia, March 26, 1826.
publication, and will, if I mistake not, clearly show that men with black and yellow skins can conduct their own affairs quite as well as those with white ones. His work, which will form a moderate octavo volume, will speedily appear.
My brother has just sent me the last Number of the Edinburgh Review. The accounts of your Mechanics' Institutions are delightful: your Church and State must prepare for the effects of them. I thought of the same thing eighteen years ago, when I knew nothing of Dr Birkbeck's proceedings; but I went further than he does, and proposed introducing Lectures to the women upon domestic economy, management of children, diseases, moral duties, &c. &c., with a previous good elementary education. I mentioned my plans to a few, and was laughed at. I think the education of women is of more consequence than that of men: the effects of the want of it here are truly lamentable. Mechanics' Institutions are going on among us, true, but there is too much aristocratic feeling in the country for them to increase very rapidly; and the people are too much engaged
in all sorts of charities, at best of very doubtful advantage. There is now building in Philadelphia a College, with a marble front, for mechanics' and labourers' sons.
I think your political economists are going mad, out-heroding Herod. It seems that men in the possession of supreme wealth and power, obtained by superior intellectual, scientific, and mechanical improvement, can be as wild and heedless as those in the possession of supreme and uncontrollable political power: both forget that they may be overturned. When the Italians were living in palaces, the English lived in huts, the huts have long since disappeared, and the palaces are now falling into ruin. I really believe that you think the agricultural, manufacturing, and naval resources of England, quite unassailable by any other country. Do not deceive yourselves. You must stick fast to your prohibitory system, or you are gone, and instantly. Even this will not serve you. You forget that your present wealth, superiority, and consequence, are forced and artificial. The political and intellectual weaknesses of other nations have made your strength. This is neither a sound nor durable state of things. It is not at all warranted by the extent of your territory, natural resources, population, or climate, when these are considered in reference to other countries. Go on with your freetrade system, and let other free Go vernments get fairly under weigh,(this country is now in part so,) and again I say you are gone. You must be content to take your station in the world as Islanders above the 50th,degree of northern latitude. I will give you some proofs of it: almost every day is bringing to light additional evidence of the inexhaustible mineral resources of this country, of the first qualities, and fit for every purpose. These seem all to be upon the same vast scale with the land, rivers, and forests. Iron and salt-works are rapidly increasing, and coal is be
ginning to take the place of wood. These mines are most extraordinary: the coal is quarried out in large masses, in open day, like the stone of Craig-Leith and Salisbury Crags. The seams of coal are 100 feet deep and more, quite free from water. Some of these coal-mines, 12 years ago, sold for 62 cents per acre: they are now selling for 400 dollars. Agriculture is increasing rapidly; and, to bring all these resources into action, the New York canal, 365 miles in length, was begun in 1817, and is now finished. Below it another is to be begun forth with by that State, running from the Ohio and Lake Erie to Philadelphia,which, for 300 miles, will pass through a country full of coal, iron, copper, salt springs, timber, &c. A large canal is now making, to unite the Delaware and Chesapeake Bay; another is to be made between the Chesapeake and Ohio, besides various others, making and to be made, supplying many thousands with employment. To detail all that is going on would fill a volume. The progress of the State of Ohio, particularly, is very remarkable. Fifty years ago there was not a white man in it. It was thinly settled 30 years ago. The population is now near 1,000,000. It is full of handsome towns and villages, some of them of considerable size, and a few approaching to superb. In this short period they had to clear the land of the heaviest timber, build all their country houses and barns, their towns, public buildings, churches, bridges, and steam-boats, make roads, &c. &c. Last year, for the first time, a nativeborn Ohian came into their legisla ture; this year three have been returned. By the last census, in 1820, the respective populations of Ohio and Massachusets were nearly the same, but there were upwards of 60,000 more children under 10 years of age in the former than in the latter. During their progress they have had several violent fluctuations and stagnations of trade, and in the prices
Every intelligent reader will see reasons for differing with this and several other opinions of our Trans-Atlantic friend. Our free-trade system, besides being the most advantageous that could be adopted in any circumstances, has been forced upon us by the altered circumstances of the iimes. We could not avoid it, unless we chose to act the part of madmen, and put an end to commerce entirely.-Ed.
of produce-serious evils and heavy drawbacks in all countries. These things were mainly caused by your forced and overgrown monopoly, and its consequences. Wheat has been sometimes as low as 25 cents. per barrel, and Indian corn 124 cents. ; yet what is this State now doing? making canals to the extent of about 300 miles, upon which about 2500 Woollen and men are employed.
other manufactures are carried on
We do reality, cheap, owing to the climate and other circumstances. not require so much as half the labour the farmers do in England; and our men being better paid and fed, and more contented, do a great deal more work than the English. I am quite satisfied that I am correct in both these statements, as I speak of the general state of the case in both countries. There are idle, worthless, and inefficient workmen everywhere. We do not incur the same risk of storms in hay-time and harvest as you do; if the drought injures us, which is but seldom, and which may be greatly counteracted by good farming, no additional expense occurs, but the contrary. I purchased my farm four years ago: the first year I had 45 barrels of wheat, the land was miserably exhausted; last year I had 5221, and every thing else in the same proportion. The first year I had 30 acres of Indian corn; last year 14 acres, and more grain than the first year. In four years more, I am confident I can make more than double this, and others can improve in the same degree.
If your Government persist in their free-trade system, you may rely upon it, your farmers will soon be overwhelmed, your manufacturers and ship-owners will then follow. Coarse cotton goods could even now be sent to Manchester, if permitted. In the year 1840, the population of this country will be upwards of 25,000,000,-in 1860, upwards of 60,000,000; and long before this period, the grain, timber, iron, coal, copper, salt, &c. of the interior, will be brought to the coast at a trifling expense. Your ships can then be driven from the ocean without a shot being fired. Your economists should look to the future, and not build their theory upon the present state of things. Your writers, ministers, manufacturers, and merchants, may distort and disguise this question as they please, and hold up as many lures as they think fit, to mislead their own people and others, but you cannot give up your present system. You do not intend it,-you dare not. There is more in the free-trade business than meets the eye, I suspect. You have as yet only thrown out a
few hints, apparently intended to induce other countries to continue to exchange their raw commodities for your manufactures, and to lead them away, and prevent them from attempting to manufacture their cottons, and other raw produce, &c. where it is fittest to be manufactured, at home. As long as you can do this, you may still continue to keep the greatest part of the world under contribution, without the aid of an army to force it. Your manufacturers and others must be aware that they hold their present commanding station by a very precarious tenure their skill and machinery only, aided by restriction at home, and ignorance and unskilfulness abroad. They will, of course, move heaven and earth in all sorts of ways to beat down manufactures abroad, and prevent them from taking root in foreign countries. All natural advantages here, and artificial ones, in part, are fearfully against you; and you have many heavy political burthens besides. You do not produce cotton, silk, dye-wood, wine, oil, sugar, rice, &c. &c. ; this country can and does grow nearly all of them. Your mines are expensive to work, and your timber is scarce and dear. What you have to fear from France I do not know, but you must look this way. So far, indeed, you have contrived to bamboozle Jonathan tolerably well, and led him to believe that it was the cheapest and most profitable system for him to carry his cotton, wool, and silk, 3000 miles from home, and then fetch them again in a manufactured state. This is too absurd, not to mention your exports to this country of iron, copper, salt, &c. which are lying under our feet, and at our own door and all this when four-fifths of our people are scrambling away to the mountains, and up this river, and down that, and God knows where, clearing forests, and civilizing savages. After all this, too, you shut your ports in our face, and send our poor fellows hawking our flour into every nook and corner of the world, and compel them to pitch it overboard at last in the Pacific, or bring it back from Buenos Ayres, and sell it by auction at a ruinous loss in the streets of Philadelphia. Dearly has
Jonathan often paid, and still does pay, for his blunders and delusion; but his free government, enterprise, and natural resources, will eventually carry him triumphantly through, and enable him to beat down all unnatural competition, in spite of his errors, many impediments arising from your and notwithstanding superior skill and machinery, and the partly inefficient duties levied on your manufactures here. With us, however, all kinds of manufactures are increasing, and in many things the market is closed to you for ever, and it is yearly becoming more contracted; but the subject is endless, and I must here conclude.
I suppose you heard of Birkbeck's fate: he was accidentally drowned sometime ago; his settlement, I am told, is broken up. Owen has, I fear, collected too many about him at once to begin well with, and many of them are sad trash. These are two, amongst others, of the rocks upon which poor Birkbeck split.
I have no wish whatever to live in England, but a great anxiety to visit it once more, which I hope to do in sometimes come across the mind of a few years. Strange sensations will one who is exiled from his native country; had tithes, and the gamelaws, and some political disabilities, been removed, which ought to have been the case long ago, I should in all probability never have abandoned it. My education and feelings wholly unfitted me for their endurance. Whilst in England, I had a great desire to carry a gun: since I could do what I please, I have drawn a trigger but once in eight years, and when I found the poor rabbit I killed had young ones, I was sorry for what I had done. I am now a fixture, under my own fig-tree, with a good wife and a little fat, fair, bony-faced, English-looking daughter, and a stout young citizen about a month old, both named after those I most valued, and those I was most indebted to in England. I hope your health is long ere this quite restored, and, with my best wishes for its continuance, believe me to be,
My dear Sir,
Your most sincere and obliged
MR JACOB'S REPORT ON THE CORN TRADE OF NORTHERN EUROPE.
WHATEVER difference of opinion may exist as to the policy of our Corn Laws, it was desirable by all parties to have a correct and authentic statement of facts relative to the condition of those countries from which the chief supplies must come, on the supposition that our ports were wholly or partially opened to the importation of foreign corn. With this view, Mr Jacob was sent by Government, in the course of last year, to collect accurate information in Poland and Prussia, and in the adjoining countries, for the purpose of enabling Administration to judge of the condition of these countries in reference to their supplies of corn, and the effects likely to be produced in our own market, if our Corn Laws were repealed or modified. The information which Mr Jacob has brought home is varied, curious, and in a high degree valuable. It will tend to dispel the calculations of ignorance and imperfect information relative to these granaries of Europe which he visited, and, if we do not grievously mistake, it will change the opinion of the majority of that class in our country, who adhere, with such determined obstinacy, as was evinced lately in Parliament, to a system of Corn Laws which seem devised to enrich one small portion of the country namely, the land-owners, and to impoverish, to brutify, and to starve all the other classes in the community. It will be found, from this Report, that the corn-growing terrorists in this country need be under no apprehension that they will be driven from the market, and reduced to ruin. It will be clearly seen, that even with the present deplorably low prices of corn in Poland and Prussia, we could not obtain wheat from thence at a lower price than from 45 to 48 shillings a quarter, and that, on the supposition that a regular demand existed for a considerable quantity of grain for this country, prices would rise so high abroad, that little, if any, advantage would arise to our corngrowers from an unrestricted importation. On the other hand, our manufacturers will now be more satis
fied than ever, that, even with the utmost liberty of importation, it is impossible for this country to obtain large and steady supplies of foreign corn at a price much lower than what we pay at this moment for corn of home-growth. To these conclusions, it is apprehended, that every person must come who takes the trouble of perusing this invaluable Report. According to the scale of ruinously-low prices of corn which now prevail among the northern nations, there would, no doubt, be a great hazard in admitting the quantity there to be found without a duty into our market; and it would be the height of injustice to those persons who had invested large sums of capital in agricultural operations, to destroy, by an immediate retrograde system of legislation, the whole of that capital which had been laid out on inferior soils. We are satisfied, therefore, that Ministry have acted most fairly, under existing circumstances, both to the land-owners in this country, to the merchants who hold foreign corn, and the community at large, when they have carried through a measure for the release of bonded corn at a fixed duty of 12s. a quarter, and obtained the leave of Parliament to permit, conditionally, a considerable additional quantity of foreign corn to be imported into the country during the recess. This, we are satisfied, was a wise suspension of the present system of Corn Laws,-a suspension called for, both by the unhappy state in which the manufacturing part of the population are now placed, and by the probability of its being of great use to corngrowers in this country themselves, by keeping the market at a steady rate. Still, however, we cannot shut our eyes to the fact, which daily experience is making plainer, that, with prices of corn so fluctuating and so high as they frequently are in this country, we shall, ere long, see our dealers in manufactured produce undersold in the general markets of the world. What is the chief element that forms our labourers? The answer undoubtedly must be-corn.