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TABLE OF CONTENTS.
The Dual Form of Labour,
Who took it ?.....
Epistolary Gossipings of Travel and its Reminiscences.
An Old Story..
The Marble Bust.
To a Friend......
A Voyage in Search of the Man in the Moon..
Reminiscences of the Revolution..
The Finale of the Flirt........
Actress in High Life....
Leigh Hunt; Lord Seymour; Danger of Playing with Edged Tools; Life of Douglas Jerrold.
STEAM POWER PRESS OF
Masson's Life of Milton; Fiji and the Fijians; Sylvia's World; Augusta Field and Fireside.
THE DUAL FORM OF LABOUR.*
The Southern States receive annually, with their woolens and negro shoes, a large supply of morbid sentiment, volunteer advice, malignant abuse, and misplaced commiseration. The anti-slave producers of these commodities are indefatigable. A single fact will indicate their weight and influence in Southern opinion. While slavery is attacked, the slave rises in value. The property assailed is estimated more and more highly every day. The confidence of the garrison steadily increases under the enemy's fire. The supposed sick man grows hourly stronger in spite of the evil prognostics and sinister practice of
less or contemptuous silence into acquiescence or conviction.
For this reason we offer to our readers a few remarks on the vital question of labour. We shall use without reserve the facts and reasonings of those who have gone before us. The topic admits of little novelty. Something perhaps in the mode of statement, nothing more. While doing this, we shall attempt to soothe the sorrows of a learned traveller who lately mourned over us in prose and verse, and strive to convince him that his sympathies and sensibilities are somewhat superfluously expended in our country, and may find an ample field for exercise in his own; that other rivers besides the "Mississip" are witnesses of the labouring man's griefs and privations; that even on the banks of the Thames, and within the limits of London, Dr. Mackay may find, if he pleases, evils more intolerable to humanity than any the negro in
But although this fact is the most conclusive of answers, it may not be amiss to review the subject occasionally, to state the argument anew, correct falsehood, and intimate to intermeddlers of all degrees and temper, that when no reply is made they must not construe care
*Life and Liberty in America, by Charles Mackay, L. L. D. F. S. A.
America has ever been forced to endure.
Philanthropy, like other fashions, has its cant and slang. Its finest dress is a flimsy rhetoric which is getting seedy. It began with Mr. Clarkson. We are told by his biographer that he took slavery as a subject for rhetorical exercise at school, and was so well pleased with its capabilities that he made it a standing topic for a lifelong declamation. What chance was there for fairness or moderation? How could he hope to escape exaggeration, distortion, injustice, falsehood? He makes slavery a monster, a new infernal machine, never before heard of in the world's history. It is, in truth, a form of labour only, one of the two forms of labour which have been known and used in all ages.
The labourers of the world may be distributed into two classeshired men and bondsmen. These two classes have always existed, among all nations, under every form of civil government. They are essentially the same. They perform the same indispensible functions in the State, those of hewers of wood and drawers of water. Labour takes one or the other of these forms, according to circum stances of climate, productions, race. The evils and advantages of their conditions are similar. We will proceed to compare them.
The comparison may give of fence to fastidious gentlemen, or to demagogues in search of political capital. In reply to a speech of Mr. Hammond, in the Senate, Mr. Banks, of Massachusetts, was angry and indignant with our dittinguished Senator, for asserting that the "mud sill" of society is essentially the same, whether the material be white or black.
pressive. It indicates forcibly the two forms or classes of labour. In this country, these two forms are composed of different races and different colours-one of African, the other of European descent. Negroes only, with us, are slaves. Hired men are whites. The negro is an inferior race. The black mud sill is not made from as good stuff as the white. This is admitted and this is the ground of offence. But the inferiority of race being admitted, why may we not, for all that, compare the darker with the lighter coloured? Moralists are accustomed to compare the highest condition of life with the lowestthe prince with the peasant-and to estimate their relative chances for happiness; why not weigh the good and ill attendant on the two humblest stations of society-on the hired man and the slave?
The phrase "mud sill" is not elegant perhaps, but it is very ex
Is Mr. Banks offended because the hired men of his constituents are compared to slaves? Why should he or they be offended? Both kinds of labourers are hard working men. Both live by daily toil. All honest labour is entitled to reverence; that of the slave not less so than any other. Who despises it? Not the Supreme Judge who is no respecter of persons, and weighs all alike in the same balances. Not right thinking men, among whom the faithful slave has an admitted claim to all honour and respect, a far juster claim than his idle or profligate brother labourer who may boast of his freedom. The honest slave is worthy to take any man by the hand. He is accustomed to be so received by slaveholders. It is not among them that contempt for the upright slave is the prevailing sentiment. The sentiment prevails among the professed friends of the slave, with sentimental travellers, and clerical abolitionists, and anti-slavery poli
ticians, with Mr. Banks, especially, in their dwellings, their food, their the mouth-piece of the sympathis- morals, their intellectual progress, ing party. in whatever evil or good is incident to the lot of each. And first, in their dwellings.
But it is not by slaveholders only that comparisons are made between hired labourers and slave labourers. The parallel is obvious to all eyes. It is seen among States of hired labour as plainly as in slave States. It is pointed at frequently by British journals, authors, and official reports.
The slave is never without a home. Every family has its cabin, coarse but comfortable, never filthy, never offensive. They have the cottager's comforts-poultry, eggs, a pig, a garden. The slave uses the wood of his master's forest without stint. He is never without clothes. What, on the other hand, is the hired man's condition in Europe? According to the "Sanitary Reports," the dwellings of the labouring man, in parts of England, are "unfit for swine;" puddles of water lie on earthern floors; forty persons live in one room; father, mother, grown up sons and daughters, sometimes eight in number, sleep in one bed; all delicacy and decorum are lost; the smell from the hovels is intolerable to strangers. In many hamlets and towns, the consequences, typhus, scarlet fever, small pox, are never absent; the royal town of Windsor being the worst of all. In the cities, as we are told by the same authority, if empty casks are left in the streets during the night, they are occupied each by a tenant before morning. According to the last English census, thirty thousand persons in England are without habitations. Mr. Osborne, a clergyman of the Church of England, in a letter to the “London Times," says the exodus of the Irish is caused by the cruelty of the landlords. Their evictions make the starving homeless. Hugh Miller, in his Autobiography, laments the demoralization of the Scotchlabourers in the last fifty years, and ascribes it to the expulsion of the people from their rural homes, and their being obliged to herd in boothies, barracks, and other temporary habitations. They have
The "Northern Times," published at Liverpool, speaking there from one point of view, says: "We romance, we moralize, we actually weep over the tales of African suffering; but we cannot afford a passing thought to the millions of white slaves that constitute the masses of our labouring population; they are regarded as hewers of wood and drawers of water merely, and are treated accordingly. *** Even Philanthropy seems to look on them with indifference or contempt." Mr. Lewis, (Monk Lewis) writing in Jamaica from the opposite point of view, declares than slavery in the West Indies, before the avater of Clarkson and Wilberforce, was "but another name for servitude, as it exists in England." In the "Sanitary Reports," got up by authority in England, Mr. Wood compares the squalor, filth and want of decency prevalent among English labourers, not to the condition of slaves, but to that of the monkey house in the zoologicul gardens. The wigwams of Indians, he adds, are palaces compared with the hovels of labourers in the mining country of England.
If this be the testimony of respectable papers, authors and men, appointed by authority to scrutinize and report, may we not venture to estimate, also, the relative evils and advantages of hired men and bondsmen? Let us compare them
been deprived of homes, and of home influences.
So far, then, as physical condition and life's necessaries are concerned, the slave need not shun a comparison with his brother labourer, who receives compensation for work in a different way. InNo slave starves to death. Such deed, this is so true, that no veraan event is unknown. The hired cious traveller attempts to deny man is never safe from starvation. it. Dr. Mackay himself says Beach, in his travels in France, the slaveholder "can easily prove says: "No law stands between the that, as a rule, slaves are better ruined labourer and starvation; he clad, fed and cared for, than the has no right to live, unless he can agricultural labourers of Europe, or support himself." "Irish whites," the slop seamstresses of London or Carlyle declares, "have been long Liverpool." But he complains that emancipated, and nobody asks them slaveholders are not doing more for to work, or permits them to work, what he calls their "human cattle." on condition of finding them pota- Why they should be expected to toes." In "London Labour and do more for their labourers than Poor," we are toid of persons sub- London for her seamstresses, is not sisting for days on the offal of the very clear We are left to infer markets, streets and gutters-on that the hired labourer, although orange peel, old cabbage stumps, living in a cask on garbage picked anything they could pick up. "Oh, up in the market-place, is more forsir," said a mother, "it is hard to tunate, in some other respects, than work from morning until night- the slave! The traveller, with a little ones and all-and not be able fragrant segar in his mouth, and a to live by it either." In the great glass of sparkling Catawba in his cities of England and the Northern hand, disdains mere creature comStates, death from starvation is not forts. He occupies "higher ground." an uncommon occurrence, to say He looks to the moral and intelnothing of periods, like the famine lectual nature and condition of the in Ireland, when in huts, fields and labouring masses-of the three milhighways, hundreds perished for lions of paupers in England, and want of food. It is well known that the thirty thousand needle-women women are often compelled to pros- in London, who are compelled titute themselves for bread. Espe- sometimes by hunger to resort to cially is this true in times of com- prostitution. Let us therefore commercial embarrassment. In slave pare the moral and intellectual States the master finds food for his condition of the slave with that of people at every sacrifice. The the hired labourer, and determine slave is at no time afraid of being who occupies the highest place on without bread. It never costs him this "higher ground." a thought. He is not only "permitted to work," on condition of being supplied with potatoes or corn, but he is secure of having them, whether able to work or not. In infancy, sickness, old age, he is sure of a home and support. These are the certain returns of his labour. He is troubled with no anxieties.
We hear of the lax morals of slaves, the looseness of the marriage tie, the want of chastity, and the eneral absence of moral principle among them.
It is well known that forms of marriage vary in various places. They are very simple with negroes; as simple as they have been in
So much for the dwellings of the hired labourer. How runs the parallel in a still more important article, that of food.