« PředchozíPokračovat »
millions sterling to buy off the bonds of the these 5,000 articles already shipped, there bondmen, she lifted up her voice and sent it were probably 1,000 more now ready for across the Atlantio and said to every slave. packing, and several hundreds in the hands of “Ye are free!" And now he thanked God that ladies in the process of making. he had been permitted to live to see the end Mr. J. Davis made a brief speech, in which of that vile, accursed thing-American slavery he took occasion to repudiate the idea that the Rond applanse). He spoke highly of the large society was seotarian, an idea that had gone heartedness of the Society of Friends who abroad in the country. had hereditary hostility to the demon of Sir T. Fowell Buxton then moved the first slavery-towards the freed-men, and said that resolution, to the effect that the meeting rethirty years ago they did more than any other garded with feelings of gratitude and rejoicing society of Christians towards the emancipation the abolition of slavery, and offered a warm of England's own slaves (applause).
welcome to the Hon. C. C. Leigh, Rev. Dr. Mr. Robert Charleton seconded the reso- Storrs, and the Rev. Sella Martin. lation, and the Rev. D. Thomas having briefly Dr. Fred. Tomkins, of London, stated that spoken upon the motion, it was unanimously Sir T. F.Buxton had just handed him a cheque carried, and the President having replied, the for £200 towards the Freed-men's Aid Assomeeting separated.
ciation, being a gift from the Dowager Lady THE COMMITTEE
Buxton (loud applause). Met directly after for the transaction of busi.
The resolution was seconded by Mr. Joseph ness, Sir T. F. Buxton, Bart., presided, and
Simpson, and supported by the Rev. W. M. there were representatives of the different Punshon, M.A., in an eloquent speech, and societies present. The meeting, which lasted having been carried, the Hon. C. C. Leigh, four hours, was occupied with discussions upon
Dr. Storrs, and the Rov. Sella Martin replied various subjects.
The Rev. 0. Brittain moved a resolution THE SECOND MEETING
approving of the forngation of a national com. Was held at the same place in the evening, mittee, which was seconded by Mr. S. Budgett under the presidency of the Mayor, Mr. W. and adopted. Naish.
A vote of thanks to the Mayor for presiding The Mayor opened the meeting, and said he brought the proceedings to a close. trusted that through the co-operation of En. glishmen and Americans in the work of be
THE Richmond Republic announces as about nevolence, the spirit of universal brotherhood, and goodwill amongst men would be promoted to appear, Circular No. 1 from General O. O. and increased. He then read a statement to Howard, the Commissioner of the Bureau of the effect that upwards of £1,400 had been Refugees, Freed-men and Abandoned Lands, subscribed to the funds of the Bristol Freed. which sets apart for the use of loyal refugees men's Aid Society since its formation in last
and freed-men certain tracts or parcels of land March. Of this sum £600 had been remitted
and other property within the State of Virgi. to the “ Friends Central Committee" in Lon. nia, to which the United States have acquired don, and by them forwarded to different asso.
title by confiscation. These lands, thousands ciations in America. £200 had been recently Elizabeth city, Prince William, Warwick, York,
of acres, lie in the counties of Loudon, Fairfax, appropriated, directly, to the Western Freed. men's Aid Association at Cincinnati. More Norfolk, and the cities of Norfolk and Portsthan £400 had been expended in materials for mouth. The Republic says this order will be clothing, and about 5,000 useful articles of
the first of a series of similar publications. clothing made from these materials by the FRIENDS of the cause are earnestly requested kind industry of some hundreds of Bristol and to aid in the circulation of this journal. It Clifton ladies, had already been shipped from may be obtained through any respectable Liverpool and distributed in America. Besides bookseller, or direct from the office.
FREED-MEN'S AID SOCIETY. RECEIPTS FOR PART OF AUGUST, AND PART OF SEPT., 1865.
Ship C 581, Halifax Freed-men's T. Bangham, Esq., Tenbury.
2 0 0
Aid Society, per C. Web. Mrs. Green
0 5 0
ster, Esq. (additional) 35 00 Mrs. Bayley
0 5 0
458, Per W. B. Harvey, Esq. Mrs. M. Heighway, Manor Hall,
35 19 2} Limesham 1 0 0 460, Unknown
12 00 Mr. T. Seager, Wescott, nr Dorking 0 10 0 592, Working Men, Broms 38 16 9 Mrs. Eveline Secretar
0 5 0
579–580, Per Thomas Har. Mrs. E. Turner, Norwood
0 5 0
vey, Esq., Leeds 48 0 0 Mr. Samuel Allen, Hitchin
10 0 0
586, Ladies of Leeds ... 13 0 0 Leeds Association
50 0 0
605, Per Thomas Harvey Lord Alfred Churchill, London 5 0 0
Leeds... 13 0 0 Collection at Forest Gate Chapel.. 11 13 1 566, Per Mrs. Townley, Dowager Lady Buxton... ...200 0 0
35 18 9 Samuel Morley, Esq., M.P. ...200 0 0
Miss M'Owan, Bowden 3 100
541, Per J. H. Watson, Esq. £481 3 0
Cockermouth 13 0 0
Per W. J. Smyth, Esq.
45 0 0 Case 542, 543, Northampton 17 9 10
Per J. Slatter, Esq.
4 0 0
547, Per James Wells, Esq. Per Hon. C C. Leigh.
Northampton 61 11 3
518, Sundry Contributions Boston Freed-men's Aid Society,
from Cheltenham, per S. Veall, Esq.
Bermondsey, &c. 55 12 6 Luton Freed-men's Aid Society,
Per Mrs. T. A. Burr, per H. Brown, jun., Esq.
40 0 0
London, (4th case) 39 0 0 Carlisle Freed-men's Aid Society, per Rev. J. E. Hargraves... 25 0 0
£453 8 51
Per Rev. Sella Martin.
Birmingham and Midland Society150 0 0 Street, Within
...167 5 0 Rev. Mr. Thomas, Liverpool 50 0 0 Traveller .. 0 2 0 John Cropper, Esq.
50 0 0 Miss B. M. Jones, Collecting Card 1 0 0 T. Hughes, Esq.
5 0 0 Per Rev. T. Barras, Peterborough 20 0 0 J. M. Ludlow, Esq....
5 00 Baptist Church, Imber, Wilts, per
R. C. L. Bevan, Esq.
25 0 0 Rev, J. Feltham ... 1 0 0 Noel's Collection
5 0 0 Mrs. G. Lundie Duncan... 2 0 0 Per Mr. Harvey, Leeds
50 0 0 W. H. Collingridge, Esq.
2 0 0 Friends' Central Committee ...500 0 0 Miss S. Rous, 2nd Collecting Card 8 5 6 National Committee
50 0 0
890 0 0 £725 13 3
Total in Cash and Goods £2,549 11 53
Printed by ArlisS ANDREWS, of No. 7, Duke Street, Bloomsbury, W.C., in the Parish of St.
George, Bloomsbury, in the County of Middlesex.
THE FREED-MAN N.
THE COTTON QUESTION,
BY THE REV. SELLA MARTIN. Read first at the Social Science Congress Sheffield; specially contributed to the Freed-Man
by the Author. NOTWITHSTANDING the unrealized desire of those who, in their dream of success, saw cotton enthroned and crowned king—such a king as would make even England bend the supple hinges of the knee to procure his favour; notwithstanding the unrealized dream that England would make haste to do him honour by aiding in securing his success, or become his ally in misfortune, there is much truth in the assertion of his adherents, that Cotton is King. • The cotton that grows in the pod, the labourer who picks it, the gin that cleans it, the press that packs it into bales, the ship that transports it, the commission merchant, the manufacturer, the labourer at the loom, the printer of its patterns, the dry-goods merchant, the people who wear it, the rag-picker who gathers it when it is worn out, the paper-maker who uses the rags in manufacture, the stationer who sells the paper, the writer who transfers his thoughts to it, the printer who prints the thoughts, the ink-maker who depends upon its use, the bookseller who disposes of the works, and those who read the printing upon the paper,—all these, in their commercial relations and aspects, countenance the claim of his majesty, if not to a kingdom, at least to a very large principality.
Shall he be a despot or a constitutional monarch ? that is the question,-a question, the immediate issues of which affect the political bearings and pros. perity of America; at the same time affecting, and that not very remotely, the mercantile success of the three foremost nations of Christendom.
In seeking a solution of this problem, let us inquire briefly what is cotton, and how it is cultivated.
What is Cotton ? It is a plant with a strong and vigorous root, a quickly growing, rank and prolific stalk, with an abundant, capricious, but valuable product.
The soil on which it grows must be prolific, but not too rank. The ground on which it is for the first time produced must be chastened by maize and pumpkins, which are gross in their nature. So exhausting is cotton, that the land on which it grows must be left to rest every
at least. And even then, the stalk-which, on account of its gross cellular formation, its rank juices, and its weakness of fibre, decays as quickly as it grows the stalk, or its chemical equivalents, must form the manure which makes possible a second crop.
The nature of this plant requires three things in its production. It requires promptitude in planting, constancy of attendance while growing, and great application in the gathering. Its culture is attended by these evile, namely, malaria in its locality, and rheumatic tendencies in its gatherers, on account of the dew that hangs about its pods and its abundant leaves, which keeps the hands and garments of its gatherers wet for many hours in the early morning It is also generally exhausting to the whole system of the labourer, since to preserve the weight and quality of the cotton, he must work not only all day, but late at night, to press into bales the picking of the preceding day, as it will either become mouldy from the dampness, or dry and brittle in fibre from the quick evaporation of the dew when exposed to the sun.
There are three kinds of cotton: known as Midland, Upland, and Sea Island. The lowest of this class is that produced on lands which, though not the best for cotton, will pay best with a cotton crop. The next is that produced on what is called the prairie lands of the States of Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi-lands of such a rich though clayey character, that the feet of the beasts and labourers have to be cleaned of it every half-hour, to enable them to continue their toil, so heavy is the weight. Then there is the finest species, the most expensive but the most injurious to human life in its cultivation, called the Sea Island cotton, produced only on the Sea Islands adjacent to the State of South Carolina.
This cotton requires peculiar conditions. It requires the sea-weed for manure, and the influence of the Gulf stream to bring it to its state of superiority over all other cottons. It always brings nearly double, and sometimes quadruple, the price of any other.
But, as I intimated, these conditions are secured at terrible expense to its producers. Where it grows, terrible fevers prevail—fevers contagious and deadly to the unacclimatised, and deteriorating even to the native. So true is this, that during slavery the average of negro-life on the Sea Islands was not more than seven years, nor in any other Cotton region more than nine years. The rapid decay of the sea-weed, and the humid air produced by the Gulf stream especially, breed and perpetuate the deadly malaria.
It is doubted very much by many whether any constitution but that of the Negro could be employed in the production of this cotton, as his constitution carries with it, by descent from a tropical race, a natural adaptedness to such conditions as I have mentioned, and possess a vitality that throws off the discases peculiar to this atmosphere. Be that as it may, it is certain that no other labourer is now so acclimatised as the Negro to conditions which seem to be indispensable to the production of all cottons in a more or less degree. For though contagious diseases, rheumatism, and general debility, do not prevail in other cotton localities to the same extent as in the Sea Islands, they are still known to prevail to some extent in all the cotton-growing districts.
It may be, and I think it is possible, that free labour will find some means of defeating the evils heretofore attendant upon the cultivation of cotton in respect to climatic conditions and diseases. Skill, we all know, or must see, was impossible with slave labour. The more complicated the machinery put into the hands of the slave, the greater his excuse for not understanding the use of it, and the greater his temptation to break it, that he might rest while it was being mended ; and in the proportion of the pressure put upon the Negro to get the most work out of him in a given time, in that same proportion was the soil exhausted, so as to need a stimulant, which was both unhealthy for the land and the labourer.
But with the return of peace, companies are being formed to gather the seaweed necessary to perpetuate the prolificacy of the Sea Islands, rather than to wait for the sea-weed to come to them, as was the case during Slavery; and Chemistry is at work, through the aid of free capital, and liberty-loving Science, in the effort to rob the sea-weed of all but its powers to enrich the soil.
And when steam and other improved agencies are put to work upon those rich prairies of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, it will be found that there is not only a great saving of Negro life, but that white men as well as coloured men, can aid in furnishing to the world a class of cotton only to be got from America.
In view of what science has already achieved, there is no doubt that cotton may be made to grow so high under the inventive genius of free labour in stimulating the soil, and that too without any detriment in the fibre, that the backbreaking and deforming position of constant stooping in picking it may be rendered unnecessary. Who can doubt that water-proof garments will be adopted under the care, forethought, economy, and humanity of free labour, so as to prevent rheumatism and other diseases heretofore unavoidable to the cotton producer? And when these improvements come, there will come with them a better class of cotton. It will be cleaner of sand, which the slave put in in former times to make the weight that his task-master required of him. It will be clearer of motes, which were introduced through the carelessness or hurry of the slave. It will be longer and more tenacious of fibre, through more scientific manuring and more artistic ginning, and the world will get more of it, on account of the new impulse under which the Negro will work, and the addition of skilled labourers which freedom will bring.
These are not speculations, but assertions capable of proof by statistics, for which I only go to one spot of experiment. On the Sea Islands, since the beginning of the war, and in one single year, the cotton was so improved in every respect, and so increased in quantity by the freed-men employed by the United States' Government, that it realized £120,000 by Free Negro labour ; and the Negroes themselves there, purchased one-third of the estates that were sold by