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SATURDAY, JUNE 22,
HOW TO KEEP ENGLAND
WE still cling to the hope, that
the people of Great Britain will not stultify their own record and alienate our
good-will by active sympathy with the Southern rebels. But we are bound to say
that, just at present, the press and the speakers of England decidedly lean to
the Southern side. Leading journals, from the London Times to the Saturday
Review and Punch, either sneer at the North or urge the claims of the rebels to
the independence which they pretend to seek ; great anti-slavery apostles like
Lord Brougham choose this moment for denouncing abolition ; the Government
adopts a policy which will enable
Southern privateers to take prizes into
Liverpool and sell them there. Look which way we will, we find no encouragement
for a friendly Government struggling to maintain itself against traitors, and
not even a word of censure of slavery—so long the object of England's fiercest
We shall not undertake to account
for the phenomenon. There must be reasons, of course, for such unfriendly
conduct toward our Government, and for such gross inconsistency on the slavery
question. But it is not worth while for us to seek them. Whether it be the
Morrill tariff or the cotton question, or the desire of English politicians to
see this country divided, which now impels Englishmen to sympathize with
slaveholding traitors, and to aid in the establishment of a nation " based on
the cornerstone of human slavery," it is fast becoming idle to inquire. It is
high time to deal with the facts as they are, and to see what we can do if, as
now seems possible, England's sympathies are actively engaged on the side of our
One-fifth of England's foreign
trade is carried on with the United States. No nation in the world buys so much
of England or sells so much to her as we do. And our trade with England is more
profitable to her than her foreign trade with any other nation ; for we send her
food and raw material, and we buy her manufactures in return. One year with
another we take annually from Great Britain $140,000,000 worth of manufactured
goods : or, in other words, assuming the usual rule to be correct, the United
States spend every year $70,000,000 in encouraging the industry of Great
Britain. Of these manufactured goods over one-half comes to this country in
British vessels, thus giving employment to an enormous fleet of steamers and
sailing craft. We sell to Great Britain, on the average, $175,000,000 worth of
domestic produce every year, a large proportion of which is destined for
consumption on the continent of Europe. Of this, again, over one-third goes to
Europe in British vessels. Our exports to Great Britain consist almost
exclusively of articles of prime necessity—cotton, tobacco, flour, corn,
provisions, and the like—without which British industry would languish, and the
cost of living —to the working classes—would be gravely enhanced.
These simple statements of fact
suggest a method of reprisal upon Great Britain which would prove quite as
effective and much less inconvenient than a war. An embargo upon trade with
England would very quickly bring
John Bull to his senses. It would speedily
teach the manufacturers of the $140,000,000 of British goods, which we have been
in the habit of consuming every year, that sympathy with traitors is an
expensive luxury. It would give the Tories—who are gloating over the supposed
failure of republican institutions—something more practical, in the shape of
factory and bread riots, to occupy their minds with at home. It would warn the
free-traders that, bad as the Morrill tariff is, it is a mere trifle to what
this country can do if we be driven to the wall.
Such an embargo would either lead
to war with England or it would not. If it did not, we should go on exporting
food, etc., to France, and buying our manufactured goods from the French ; so
that, in the course of a year or two, we should build up Havre, Bordeaux, Lyons,
and Rouen, as we have built up Liverpool, London, Birmingham, and Manchester.
Instead of the French importing from the United States through Liverpool, as
they now do, England would then import through Havre.
If the embargo led to war it
could not injure us much more than active British sympathy with the rebels
would. England has not men enough to effect a landing on our coast. In the
Crimean war she could not raise an army of 50,000 men. New York alone could take
care of any army she might send out. She would of course blockade many, if not
all of our ports. But the same result will practically be reached if privateers
are fitted out in England ; already our insurance companies have raised the war
risk to a point which absorbs the profit of shippers ; the amount of shipping
laid up has reached a formidable figure, and increases daily. On the other hand,
a war with England would this time
insure the annexation of
Canada—no mean gain to us in view of the future. We might inflict more severe
injuries on our antagonist if we secured the alliance of France, or aroused an
insurrectionary movement among the Irish or the Chartists. But these are
considerations of small moment. The really important point is, that a war with
England would not injure us more than such British sympathy with the rebels as
is foreshadowed in the Queen's proclamation, the declarations of the Ministry,
and the tone of the London press.
It may be said, of course, that
we have no control of the cotton crop, and that if Great Britain declared war
upon us she would raise our
blockade of the Southern ports. It does not
need much discernment to perceive that this would be the last cotton crop
England would get, or the South would have to export.
The world will bear witness to
the tenderness and delicacy with which the Federal Generals are dealing with the
General Butler, deviating from the precedents
established by Generals Taylor and Gaines, who set free negroes seized as
prisoners of war, offers to restore fugitive slaves to any owner who takes the
oath of allegiance ;
General McClellan declares that he will put
down servile insurrections " with an iron hand ;"
General Patterson warns his
troops to respect all kinds of "property." The kind of proclamation these
Generals would issue to their troops the day after England raised our blockade
of the Southern ports and made common cause with the Confederacy " based on the
corner-stone of human slavery," will suggest itself to every one who understands
OUR FOREIGN MINISTERS.
Wily is it that the Government of
the United States so often contrives to send the wrong men to represent it
abroad? What fatality is it which renders our diplomatic corps so frequently a
failure ? There are always plenty of good men in the country who are willing to
represent the United States abroad; what evil genius is it which contrives to
set these systematically aside, and to substitute for them men either unfit, or
distasteful, or positively disgraceful ?
One might have supposed that the
shame and disgrace brought upon the country by the Ostend Manifesto, and the
misconduct of Soule,
Sanders, Daniels, etc., would have served as a
warning to future Administrations, and that hereafter our Foreign Ministers
would have been selected with care. But how does the case stand?
Our minister to France, Mr.
Dayton, a highly respectable man, does not speak a word of French. Our minister
to Russia, a brave and chivalrous gentleman, and excellently fitted to fight the
present battle of the Union in Kentucky, has so little discretion that he can
not pass through London without following the time-honored example of vain
Americans, and writing a silly letter to the Times, which does us infinite
mischief. To Austria we send a very good man in his way, but whose chief claim
to distinction in foreign politics rests upon the efforts he made to give aid
and comfort to a rebellious Austrian province. To Spain—still chafing under the
insults put upon her by Mr. Soule—we send a European exile, a fierce
revolutionist, who would have been the very man to lead a squadron of horse in
the war, but who can hardly expect a civil reception at the court of Queen
Isabella. To the refined and polished court of the Hague we send a sound
republican, rough as the hide of a rhinoceros. By way of making a balance, we
suppose, a strong democrat, great on matters of taste and dress, goes to
represent the republican Administration in commercial Belgium. Our envoy to
Portugal turns out to be a rank traitor—at least, so his friends here confess.
It is hardly the part of
patriotism to try to embarrass the Government at this juncture, and we will only
add that we hope the military offices in the gift of the Administration will be
filled with more judgment than the Foreign Missions we have mentioned.
The mischief which an indiscreet
or unfit minister may do will counterbalance all the benefit the country may
derive from the judicious diplomacy of such men as Adams, Corwin, Marsh, and
MORE SOUTHERN PICTURES.
WE continue in this number our
illustrations of Scenes at the South, though there is no communication either by
mail or express with that section of the country. On another page the reader
will find an engraving of a
Bivouac of CONFEDERATE TROOPS at Warrington, Pensacola, from a
photograph taken a few days ago. We venture to promise our readers that the
interruption of mail and other intercourse with the
Southern States will not
prevent our receiving a regular supply of illustrations from thence.
Notwithstanding the abuse of Southern journals, we seem to have friends left at
the South, who promise to keep us supplied with sketches by smuggling them
across the lines. Our late subscribers in that section do not know what they
miss in being deprived of Harper's Weekly.
WHY WE TALK ABOUT ENGLAND.
WE all naturally think and say a
great deal about the position of England toward us, because she is, of all the
great nations in the world, our natural ally. America is the child of England.
The child left the ancestral home with indignation and violence, but she is none
the less of the same blood, of the same sympathy, of the same hope. The colonies
were settled front many countries, but the dominant race and the controlling
spirit were the Anglo-Saxon. The breach with the mother country was long in
healing. There were jealousies, rivalries, sneers, haughty indifference. But
still the glory of England was our glory. Carlyle and Macaulay, Wordsworth and
Tennyson, Dickens and Thackeray, they were ours as they were England's, they
were ours as the men of no other nation are. Speaking in the aggregate, England
may have feared and hated us as a commercial rival—as a power likely to dispute
with her the supremacy of the seas; but the best Englishmen and the best
Americans met and stood upon a higher ground than that—the ground of common
blood, civilization, and destiny.
That the English Government seems
so coldly unmindful of this is the sting and surprise. Yet, as we say elsewhere,
while the heart and conscience of the two nations have been, upon the whole, in
accord, our own Government has doubtless hitherto misrepresented the truest
sentiment of our people, and we ought to wait to hear whether the English people
confirm the official action of their Government. If there be no correcting
public sentiment developed—if it shall finally appear that the nation is truly
Lord John Russell and Lord Palmerston, England
will have disdained and lost her most natural and valuable ally.
OUR NATIONAL REPUTATION.
NATIONS, like kings, it seems,
have no friends. Frame came to the rescue of our old revolution, not because she
loved the colonies, but because she hated the parent country. And we are now
learning, not without some dismay, that, in a threatening moment, the "
friendship" of a nation means suspicious neutrality.
Where is that capital story told
about "pretence of mind?" A Bishop and some friends were sailing in a small boat
which was struck by a squall and the Bishop's bosom crony was thrown into the
water. He grasped the gunwale to help himself back into the boat. " By Jove!"
said the Bishop afterward, "I thought he would capsize us all. But I had,
providentially, presence of mind enough to recollect my umbrella, and seizing
that, I rapped poor Torn upon the knuckles so hard that he was obliged to let
go, and sunk; and we all got very comfortably to shore."
Yet, if we ask ourselves closely
what right we had to expect friendship from other nations, we shall be obliged
to confess that we had none at all. We may not like to confess it, but we have
boasted, and swaggered, and sworn, in the great society of nations, very much as
the representatives of our "late Southern brothers" have behaved in Congress.
Metaphorically speaking, we have squirted tobacco juice over all the powers of
Christendom. Think of the Ostend Manifesto. Remember that the chief signer was
our accredited representative in England, and returned to us, after that
performance, only to be made President. Think of our Cuba performances; of our
conduct in the Peruvian guano difficulty, of our general tone in dealing with
small powers, and of the haughtiness with which we have treated large ones. Our
very existence was a pang to the monarchical system ; and our behavior was
offensive. We were regarded as a phenomenon among nations, and the interest of
the world in our fate was limited to a languid curiosity as to how soon we
should fall into the anarchy prepared for all republics.
The work we have in hand,
therefore, is not merely the suppression of a rebellion, but it is to show the
world that the characteristic spirit of the American people has been most
grossly misrepresented hitherto. The great body of intelligent men in every
nation are to learn that the same spirit which has every where belied the
country—which through the mouths of our embassadors has placed us in the
ridiculous and wicked position of being the only government which professed to
be based upon the rights of man, and yet the only one which justified human
slavery—is the spirit which, having been plainly exposed to the people of the
country, has been expelled from power, and feeling its expulsion to be
irrevocable, now seeks to destroy the government since it can no longer control
By-and-by enlightened men every
where will perceive that it was because we were conscious of the disgraceful
position we have been made to hold in the world by the misrepresentations of the
anomalous feudal and aristocratic faction which has hitherto adroitly spoken and
acted for the United States, that we have now hurled it from the government. And
they will see, also, that the faction maintained itself so long only by
ingenious appeals to the prejudices and forbearance and love of peace of the
great party by means of which it reached and retained power. And they will see
further, that the mass of that party in concert with the other great party of
the country, has now buried the hatchet beneath the flag, and that both stand
shoulder to shoulder and heart to heart, to prove that a popular government can
cope triumphantly with the most desperate rebellion, and conquer not only an
unprecedented peace at home, but the intelligent and admiring sympathy of all
who wish well to mankind.
THE QUESTION OF REBELLION.
REBELLIONS are not necessarily
just or unjust. But hitherto, as they have generally been risings of the people
against tyranny, they have inspired
sympathy in all generous minds.
The great rebellion in England was the protest of the English people against the
despotic, irresponsible prerogative of the crown. The French Revolution was the
despairing struggle of utterly oppressed and outraged human beings. The late
risings in Italy, Garibaldi's landing in Sicily, the expulsion of the small
Dukes from Tuscany, Modena, and Parma, were all rebellions, because they were
movements against established governments; but they are justified by the heart
of mankind, because they were struggles against intolerable oppressions, whose
consequences were worse than the woes of war.
The insurrection of the
slaveholding faction in this country is not criminal because it is a rebellion,
but because it is the effort of a faction to overthrow the government of the
whole people. It is precisely what a rebellion of the monarchists in Italy would
be, after Italy had established a popular government with a constitution
providing for its own amendment. Our fathers who undertook the Revolution were
rebels; but they rebelled only when lawful redress of grievance was clearly
impossible. They took up arms, at first, in defense of the rights of British
subjects under the British constitution. James Otis constantly appealed to that
constitution. The colonies petitioned the crown under the privileges of that
constitution: and only when the positive wrongs they suffered were felt to be
irremediable, did they appeal to God and man for the justice of their cause,
draw the sword, and boldly take their stand as rebels.
It was not the success of their
rebellion that justified it. If the English government had succeeded in quelling
it, and Washington, Adams, and Franklin had hung separately, as Franklin
jocosely remarked, their rebellion would still have been as noble in its aim as
it was complete in its success—the great leaders would have been censured for
want of wisdom in exposing a people to the consequences of defeat ; but those
consequences would have been cheerfully accepted by the people. So if Garibaldi
had miscalculated the unanimity of the Sicilians or the power of the Neapolitan
government, and had failed a year ago when he touched Sicily with the torch of
liberty and it flamed from end to end, he would still have been esteemed in
history unfortunate, but not criminal.
Suppose now a successful
monarchical reaction in Italy by which the Italians should be again relegated to
the despotic rule of their petty princes. Would success be accounted
justification? Does History, does the heart of mankind, honor only the
successful? If Aaron Burr had divided the country and founded a Mexican empire
to dispute with us the continent ; if John Andre had returned safely within the
British lines and Benedict Arnold had betrayed the American cause to its
overthrow, would our traditions despise them less? Would not History and mankind
condemn them all the more ?
Concede success to the Davis
rebellion, still you can not save it from historical ignominy. The destruction
of a great nation upon which hang the hopes of the world, whose government is
just and firm, but flexible and mild, whose Constitution provides for the
peaceful and equitable remedy of every grievance, and even, indirectly, for its
own abrogation, the overthrow of a government ordained by the people of the
United States to form a more perfect union, to establish justice, to insure
domestic tranquillity, to provide for the common defense, to promote the general
welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty, by a rebellion of some of those
people aiming to establish a government which shall secure the perpetuity of
slavery, and who can not truly plead a single injury or a solitary effort at
peaceful remedy of their alleged wrongs, would be a misfortune without a
parallel in history.
AN OBVIOUS QUESTION.
A POWER friendly to England is
engaged in suppressing a rebellion. England says to her: " I don't care in the
least whether you put down the rebellion, or the rebellion puts you down. The
only thing I care about is cotton, and that I am going to have, anyhow."
Such an attitude is the strongest
moral support of the revolt. What is likely to come of it? In the first place,
the rebellion will be prolonged until the time for shipping cotton, in order
that England may openly and actively support it. If
Jeff Davis is compelled to fall back from
Virginia through the Carolinas to
Montgomery again, he will not hesitate. He will
hold out at any cost, to give England the opportunity to interfere.
But, in the second place, before
that time arrives the Government of the United States will undoubtedly say to
" You call yourself a friendly
ally of ours. We are crushing a rebellion. It survives still, and survives
solely upon your sympathy. If you are a friendly power you will no longer
encourage treason among our citizens. If you continue to encourage it you are
not a friendly power, and we shall act accordingly. In the present situation,
with a proper regard to their duty and dignity, the United States can not
consent to the so-called neutrality of England."
Such a tone might be taken in no
truculent spirit, but as a simple and obvious and justifiable necessity If
Ireland were in open rebellion against the British Government, for whatever
cause, and the United States recognized Ireland as a belligerent, it is clear
that the rebellion would derive its chief importance and danger from that
sympathy. How long before Great Britain would ask the United States to explain
THE WAY TO WAR.
IT is asked how the action of
England, in merely recognizing the belligerent rights of the rebellion, can
occasion war. The question is very easily answered.
Great Britain has not recognized
the independence of the rebellious States. Victoria is not yet (Next