Abbildungen der Seite

rival their sapient fathers. If you should hear this, I pray you, if possible, not to give ear to such a scandalous tale, but rather record in your journal the noble example of Connecticut, where the most ample provision is made for the rising generation. As learning, since the days of Jack Cade, has become of such importance, that even the profligate and disorganizing Godwin could write in its favour, no doubt a few years will greatly extend the principles in our new countries; for on these must finally depend the moral fitness, and the purity and correctness of the Amor patria we hope to inculcate, with the love of posthumous and virtuous fame, a contempt for idleness and for mean, personal and sensual gratifications; and for riches, except those wherewith to do good; and with these, a Spartan contempt of danger and of death....such as we saw exhibited in our glorious contest for freedom ; and such as our gallant countrymen have recently evinced in passing the Lybian desert, and before the walls of Tripoli and of Derne. With such sons ! it is easy to increase the number of our fair CORNELIAS, who whenever called to exhibit their most precious jewels, will parade a smiling flock of cherubs ; such as now form the celestial choir in paradise. Who can speak the joys of the father of such children, educated by such a wife, who lives and moves but for her beloved charge? The too happy husband and father of such a family, enjoys a supreme felicity that bids defi. ance to all the powers of language.

A republic or commonwealth, formed chiefly of such citizens, may soon become invulnerable from abroad, while at home they realize in peace their blissful millennium

And why may not our posterity enjoy this state of happiness, if we continue firm to our constitution, and go on to increase in all the peaceful arts, and to extend our minor schools ; and to complete in due time the great combining fabric, founded by Washington, in his last will? This, his noble university, is now doubly secured, both by the compound interest of his own donation, and by the sums daily increasing from the hands of all his voluntary friends. The names of all these will be added to the next edition of this work, which will be published for the sole benefit of the free education fund to the university of Washington.

We cannot yet boast of the progress of improved agriculture, or neat husbandry, much beyond the verge of our commercial cities and towns, or beyond the common walk of the busy animating train, to whoin the world are solely indebted for its existence. See Anderson, on national industry, and every enlightened statist, on these subjects.

The happy effect of commerce to originate and improve agricul. ture and horticulture, where mere planting, on a confined scale, was only known, is a secret of modern date, or known to a few only, till within 30 years ; before which time, as Dr. Adam Smith tells us, there were two classes of economists, distinguished by their tenets. The creed of one sect was called the commercial system, and that of the other, the agricultural system. They only served to puzzle

each other. For example, the one made the labourer in the earth the only PRODUCTIVE biped. Dr. Adam Smith, taking for his mode the great common place book of Montesquieu, drew together a mass of excellent materials, in a smaller compass than had ever been done, except by the editors of an Encyclopedia. On the mass of information the economist may generally rely, wherever he only bórrows; but if ever Dr. Smith offers to give advice, he does it too much at random. For example, what could be more dangerous, than for a bank to issue five times the amount of its capital, in paper? A run would ruin nine banks in ten, proceeding to such a dangerous speculative length. It is equally dangerous to take his opinion at either end of his work, on the subject of the variation of money ; for he differs from himself in this, as in many other parts of his work, on other important subjects. The mind of an able statist should resemble the proboscis of a noble elephant; it should be feelingly alive to every thing, and yet all powerful; it should perceive the smallest defect in the parts, while it fully combines the whole of the most extensive plan, or the most sublimely comprehensive machine. In short, it is said, “ it should be able either to pick up pins, or to tear up a forest by the roots." Dr. Smith could pick up pins, but when he attempted more, he sometimes left confusion worse confounded. He charges the great Colbert with being at the head of a commercial plan, opposed to the interest of agriculture, on the nonsensical evidence of a set of theoretic recluse, who wanted to make the world believe that there was an agricultural interest opposed to the commercial interest of a country. These theorists asserted, that the labourer, or the stimulated agent, only was entitled to the honorable name of the PRODUCTIVE CLASS ; that all other men, except the land holders ! were mere drones in the hive, and in fact useless, for their reasoning leads at last to this. How a land holder could be included in such a scheme, or in such a list of agents for subsistence only, and fishermen left out, it is difficult to imagine ; but consistency is out of the view of such theorists, nor is it possible for us to find an apology for their nonsense. The entire agency for the PRODUCTIONs for animal food, involves all these elements, yiz. air, heat, and moisture, in contact with an heterogeneous mould, for the base of the tree or plant to be produced. But labour is not always necessary to the production of food for our subsistence ; wild fruit and roots, as well as fish and game, may often support savages ; and if ever labour is frequently employed, it is no where vo. luntary. See page 50, for the exciting causes, &c. To admit that labour only is to be honored, it should be proved that it required no im. petus, no main spring. The plough should go without the driver ; and the labourer should have no stimulating object in view. He should work of himself, for the love of industry alone. But we have found that in the present state of things, money, commerce and the arts, are the principal stimuli to a healthy and happy portion of agricultural labour. There is often a little planting done by the female savages only, where commerce has never been ; but it never was

known to deserve the name of agriculture, till the commercial busy train had a footing on the spot. Hence there are districts in our country, where, as none but pedlars in trade have yet been, there is yet no high cultivation. A state must be generally commercial, before the labour of one fourth of the inhabitants will procure food for the whole, with the same ease and with more health and happiness than where four fifths of the inhabitants, with no other employment than planting, have but little food to spare, and are däily ruining the soil by slovenly inattention to almost every point of correct agriculture. Although it is yet to be determined how many families may be maintained by the agricultural labour of one, it is nevertheless certain, that where one family produces enough, on an average, for three families, there is more wealth, health, and harmony, than where less is done. Our cod fishermen usually take subsistence enough for 10 to 20 persons, annually. In the herring fishery there is much more done ; but the season for this productive branch is of short duration.

In our next book, we will endeavor to shew the frortion of agriculturalists, and of the commercial stimulating train, that are best suited. together for the interest and happiness of the whole of any commonwealth. To do this, without a detail of the necessary facts, will do nothing to convince the mind of any who may want faith in a novel attempt, which we presume, is of the first importance to any student of UNIVERSAL ECONOMY.

We have endeavored, in our little book, to embrace every statistical point yet in our power, and regret that the novelty of the ground has taken up more of our time than we expected. As pioneers in a good cause, we shall rejoice if we make the path easier to our followers, who will be careful to avoid the difficulties to which they may observe we were unavoidably subjected. If health should permit, our next attempt shall widen and make smoother the path we have chosen, for the benefit of all future travellers.

With an unconquerable prejudice for every thing AMERICAN, we shall not shine in our assumed office a3 CENSORS; but as we have yet no constitutional officers of this description, who will fill this blank? Many members of congress dare not do it : hence their circular letters are often filled with the most absurd flattery. We own we have sought for faults, and if we have found any, they are only such as may be casily amended. .“ Satius est supervacua discere quam nihil.”


“ Parum mihi placent eæ litercæ quæ ad virtutem doctoribus nihil profuerunt."



esquire, a young member of congress. RESPECTED FRIEND,

IN obedience to your request, we have endeavoured to add our mite to the small stock of your selected information, froin the materials we have collected for a larger work, embracing the economy of the civilized world, as far as 20 years attention to the subject may have enabled us to extend our too limited powers for inquiry. To answer your first question we do not go as usual to Greek or Roman authority, lord KAIMES has given the essence of both, in telling us that “ PATRIOTISM IS THE CORNER STONE OF CIVIL SOCIETY;" that no nation ever became great without it; and when it is extinguished, the most powerful nation is on the high road to dissolution. The same learned gentleman was one of the first who published the following sentiment :

“ The North American colonies are in a prosperous condition, increasing rapidly in population and in opulence; the colonists have THE SPIRIT OF A FREE PEOPLE, their population will exceed that of Britain and Ireland in less than a century. If they then chuse to be independent, every advantage will be on their side, as the attack must be by sea and from a great distance; thus delivered from foreign yoke, it is not difficult to see what kind of government they will chuse. A people animated by the blessings of liberty, will not incline to royalty.Kaimes's sketches, 1769.

It will be found highly gratifying, if you take up a mercators chart of North America, and see how admirably the present and permanent seat for the general government is adapted for the general convenience, as the HEART or common center of the union, whenever the whole of North America may unite, as they will do, bý purchase or otherwise, in due time ; for we find by the present temper of the Louisianians, and of all the emigrants who have visited us since our independence, that the natural aflection of all rational men for the best sociul system that ever was formed, increases daily. Hence whenever an inflated partizan wishes to inflict the deepest wound on the feelings of his political opponent, he tells hin, “ you will endanger the union!well knowing that this is a more dreadful prophecy, or imprecation, than any other in the American vocabulary, but of no more meaning than the coquetry of a love sick girl, who may tell the swain she coats on, we must part forever ! There is not a man in America, of sound mind, who does not think with our Washington. See his inestimable valedictory on this subject. It is very true that this belief is opposed by many writers in the oid world, but by only those who had an interest in the assertion. The commercial and combining principles that daily gain ground in our country, teach us how to estimate the value of our union by infallible rules. By these we know, that if our congress had done their duty during the last 14. years, we should have been nearly twice as rich in the total

valuation of all our property, (see page 198) and of course, strong enough to have made all the European nations, at least, civil to us ; for i reality, it is not their interest to disturb us. The more capital we obtain on loan, to a certain extent, from Europe, the more industrious and the more pacific are our inclinations. If, perchance, we had obtained too much, it could do no more harm, than when there is a little more oil applied to a creaking wheel than was wanted.... No loss would have attended the circumstance, for it would have raised the price of our lands, pledged for the redemption of all loans, in a compound ratio of increase for any attainable sum. Therefore, it will be astonishing to posterity, that our political fathers should not have inquired into the state of the body politic, committed to'their charge. If the vital fluid, (money,) was too languid in circulation, they ought to have prescribed a remedy.

If the innumerable wheels in the complicated machinery of commerce, complain or stop, for want of the essential oil of all industry, they should provide more in due season.

There was but one opinion on these subjects during our war for independence; nor till the unfortunate disagreement on the mode of funding the war debt, and on the best site for the federal city, did any member of congress oppose the true interest of his country, from mere party spleen. The effects of this party spleen has been, to cost the country an immense sum in the private sacrifices of bankrupt enterprize, as well as in the difference of price for public property, bo h in the western territory, and in the unseasonably forced sales of public lots in the city of Washington, in the summer of Before this, the city lots were esteemed worth 200 to 800 each, and actually sold at auction for those prices; but by that improvident sale, above a million was lost to the public and to the most active friends to their country, who believed with Washington, that the union was not secure 'till our country had a heart, as well as a head and arteries also, in roads and canals, of easy communication, for the health of the body politic, which without these must be a monstrous lusus natura. Hence all those friends who acted in this belief, and who with patriotic confidence embarked their all in the plan, are now cither tottering, or they have fallen a sacrifice to the most impolitic ineasure of our government. It is usual for our printers to lay all such blame to the executive. This is obviously incorrect; for when Mr. Jefferson proposed to bring the water of the Potomac, for a few miles, to the navy yard, it was opposed even by members who well knew that the effect on the public property alone, would make it an cconomical plan ; especially, if by coursing these pure waters along the higii grounds of Georgetown and the city, the inhabitants were hereafter supplied therefrom. In a few years the plan would have been as highly productive of pecuniary profit to the government, as of health to the inhabitants. Of this, every member of congress of any character for prudence and forethought, was fully convinced ; but alas! the bane of all republics, the spirit of party, was not thus

« ZurückWeiter »