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mean white brethren in their own cities, and the farmers and traders of the North and West; lived the life of princes at home and of courted visitors abroad; had a monopoly of political office at Washington, and enjoyed over all the world the reputation of an equal monopoly of the breeding, the culture, the gallantry, and the intellectual ability of the Anglo-American race.

The failure of the Confederation shattered this whole social structure as none was ever shattered before. It not only freed the slaves, but it enslaved the masters. It not only ruined the political position of the planters, but destroyed their commercial prosperity. During those years of supreme effort and agony, when the country was first isolated from the outer world and then ravaged by the incursions of a victorious enemy, the labour system became disorganised, the land fell out of cultivation, the railways and roads were broken up, and many of the most prosperous towns were laid in ruins. Mr. Somers, who spent the latter months of 1870 and the early part of 1871 in a tour of intelligent observation in the Southern States, found, even then, that the trail of the war was everywhere visible. In the magnificent valley of the Tennessee, he found · burnt-up gin

houses, ruined bridges, mills, and factories, of which latter ' the gable walls only are left standing, and large tracts of once

cultivated land stripped of every vestige of fencing. The roads, long neglected, are in disorder, and having in many ' places become impassable, new tracks have to be made through

the woods and fields without much respect to boundaries. · Borne down by losses, debts, and accumulating taxes, many who were once the richest among their fellows have disap‘peared from the scene, and few have yet risen to take their

place.' This unhappy valley is no exception; all over the South the same ruin spread. The commercial ruin was even

The mere money loss in the abolition of slavery was four hundred millions sterling, though the loss was one by which civilisation and humanity have gained. The banking capital, estimated at two hundred millions, was, says Mr. Somers,

swamped in the extinction of all profitable banking business, and finally in a residuary flood of worthless Confederate

money. The whole insurance capital of the South--probably ' a hundred millions more--also perished. The well-organised cotton, sugar, and tobacco plantations, mills, factories, coal ‘ and iron mines, and commercial and industrial establishments, * built up by private capital, the value of which, in millions of ‘pounds sterling cannot be computed, -all sank, and were engulfed in the same wave. Every form of mortgage claim, with the exception of two or three proud State stocks, shared



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for the time being the fate of the principal, and only now crops up amid the subsiding deluge like the stumps of a sub'merged forest.' But no description of these losses can so powerfully set them forth as the figures of the census returns of the value of property in 1870 as compared with 1860. The valuation of Virginia and West Virginia was 480,800,267 dollars in 1870; it had been 657,021,336 dollars in 1860. South Carolina had diminished in taxable value during the ten years, from 489,319,128 dollars to 174,409,491 dollars. Mississippi stood at a valuation of 509,427,912 dollars in the year before the war, four years after the war it was valued at only 154,635,527. Louisiana fell to about half its former valuation ; Florida to less than half; unfortunate Georgia to less than onethird. Mr. David Wells, the late Special Commissioner of Revenue, in his last official report estimates the direct expenditure and loss of property by the Confederate States by reason of the war at 2,700,000,000 dollars. Mr. Wells thus describes the condition in which the South was left: In 1865, this sec*tion of our country, which in 1860 represented nearly one-third

of the entire population, and, omitting the value of the slaves, nearly two-sevenths of the aggregate wealth of the nation,

found itself, as the result of four years of civil war, entirely prostrate, without industry, without tools, without money, 'credit, or crops; deprived of local self-government, and to a 'great extent of all political privileges ; the flower of its youth * in the hospitals or dead upon the battle-fields; with society disorganised, and starvation imminent ou actually present.' To this dark picture one darker line must be added.' Southern society was demoralised by defeat. A profound discouragement settled down over the whole surface of the land. Highspirited and chivalrous as it had been, the South might be described at the close of the war, in the language of the prophet, as . a nation scattered and peeled, a people terrible from their · beginning hitherto, a nation meted out and trodden down, whose land the rivers have spoiled.'

The first hope of the South was, that in reconstructing its social, commercial, and political organisation it might be let alone. But the North had made itself the guardian of four millions of liberated negroes, and it could hardly leave its wards to be dealt with by eight millions who were once their masters. The rational and even the obvious course towards the freedmen was that they should receive complete civil rights, and be considered as in a state of pupilage for the exercise of political rights. The Northern distrust of Southern politicians, and, to some extent, the violence which the disappointed Southern population exhibited, rendered this policy impossible; and after three years of warfare, almost as violent as the strife of arms, the liberated negroes were clothed with all the powers and prerogatives of American citizenship. In the very midst of this political discouragement natural difficulties arosé. During the years 1866 and 1867 the crops both of cotton and of grain were, Mr. Wells says, to a great extent failures. The freedmen, excited by the discussions which were going on about them, stimulated by appeals from “carpet-baggers’travelling enthusiasts and politicians and commercial speculators from the North--were not disposed to work for hire. They had some vague notion that the world had been disturbed about them, that a great nation had successfully vin dicated their cause; and they might well be pardoned for believing, or at least for vaguely expecting, that they were about to become masters where they had hitherto been slaves. Their demands for wages were excessive; it was impossible to satisfy them, and they had to learn by bitter experience that the difference between slavery and freedom was simply that they might choose their work and select their masters, and own the proceeds of their labour. But while they were learning this lesson even Nature seemed to fight against the planters. All efforts to revive the cotton trade seemed doomed to failure; the farmers turned to the sowing of corn, but the corn crop failed; and at the close of 1867 and the beginning of 1868 the whole South was worse off than it had been when the war closed. There were men not altogether hypochondriacs who began to despair of its recovery. The prophecies of the failure of free labour were regarded as actually fulfilled. Even in the North there were apprehensions that the South would only recover as the old races both of masters and slaves died out, and were succeeded by a new race of immigrant free men. It was the lowest point of Southern depression, the darkest hour before the dawn. During the summer of 1868 it became evident to the Southern people that General Grant would be elected President; that the three years' struggle against the Radical reconstruction policy of the North would as surely fail as the war had failed; and that there was nothing before them but to accept the civil and political equality of the negroes with themselves. While they were coming to this resolve the seasons smiled on them, and an abundant harvest was gathered in. There was not only enough for home use but plenty to spare, and the value of the cotton, grain, sugar, tobacco, and naval stores actually exported amounted to three hundred millions of dollars in currency. The tide had gently turned just

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as the people were disposed to take it at the flood; and though it has not yet floated them on to fortune, it has at least enabled them to clear the shallows and the miseries into which the war had drifted them.

The great resources of these Southern States are scarcely understood even in the Northern States, and are almost unknown to the rest of the world. Their peculiar domestic institution made the Southern people jealous of the observing eyes of foreigners, and induced them to cultivate an almost Chinese isolation; since the war they have been jealous of the influence of Northern immigrants upon the negroes, and have not encouraged intercourse. Mr. Robert Somers, as an Englishman and a man of business, found none of this jealousy. He set out from Washington in the autumn of 1870, and travelled over the whole South, everywhere noting the commercial and industrial condition and resources of the country, and gathering an immense mass of the most valuable information. His volume, though without literary arrangement or finish• rudis indigestaque moles’ as to its form, and as to its abundant matter

Non bene junctarum discordia semina rerum, – is the most complete account yet given to the public of the condition and prospects of the Southern States since the war. Mr. Somers was eminently qualified for the task of estimating from actual observation what those resources were. A man of business, thoroughly familiar with the cotton trade, and completely at home on all questions of labour, production, capital, and culture, he knew exactly what to observe, and how to test his observations so as to make them valuable. He left Washington in October 1870, and went to Richmond; from thence, through North Carolina, by way of Goldsboro' and Wilmington, to Charleston-old Charleston,' as its citizens are proud

From Charleston he travelled through the whole State of South Carolina, stopping at its capital, Columbia, by the way; and proceeding through Lexington and Granitéville to Augusta in Georgia. In Georgia he travelled along the line of Sherman's march to the Forest City of Savannah, the great seaport of the State, and back by way of Millen and Macon to Atlanta. Plunging through the mountain defiles at Chattanooga, in Tennessee, he visited the Valley of the Tennessee, one of the gardens of the South, the Indian name of which-Alabama, · Here we rest-has been given to the State along the northern end of which the valley runs.

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Traversing this beautiful valley, Mr. Somers penetrated the State of Mississippi ; and re-entering Alabama, traversed the whole of that State; visited its seaport, Mobile ; went from thence to New Orleans ; returned along the River Mississippi to Memphis in Tennessee; thence to Nashville, and back to Washington. This journey, which occupied between four and five months, enabled Mr. Somers to make a general survey of the industrial region of the Southern States. It did not include the great Valley of Virginia, the agricultural highlands of Western Virginia, nor the State of Florida. But though cotton is grown in both these States they lie out of the cotton belt;' and it is cotton which must still be, as it always has been, the main source of Southern prosperity. It was impossible to make such a journey without being greatly impressed by the splendid resources of the country. It is a land of magnificent possibilities. Nature has been prodigal of her bounty, and only art is needed to develope the full value and profusion of her gifts. Crossing the Potomac, the Northern winter is left behind, and the mellowed climate is only the visible and appreciable sign of a more genial soil. Amid this kindness of Nature man has been unkind to himself. The obstacles to Southern prosperity are moral, social, political, and industrial, not natural. The trail of an evil institution was over all the Paradise; and, though the institution has passed away, is over it still. The intelligent observation of Mr. Somers has, however, enabled us to make a clearer estimate than was possible before of the industrial resources by which these great natural gifts are being developed; of the progress which has been made in the social and commercial reconstruction of the country, and of the obstacles which political difficulties still put in the way of the full restoration of peace, plenty, and prosperity.

No war could destroy the natural resources of the country. If the whole labour-system was destroyed, the fields on which the labour was exerted still remained. It may be said indeed that, after the war, the soil and the climate, the fruitful showers and the ripening sunshine, were nearly all that was left. But the soil was freed along with the slaves. Slavery was itself profitable, but it rendered everything else unprofitable. It prevented the application of culture and intelligence to the development of the Southern resources, and consequently hindered that development. Free labour and slave labour cannot coexist; and however well slave labour might do for the cotton culture or the rice planting, only free labour could work the iron mines of Georgia, or make the coal-fields of

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