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this, little argument for conservatism appeared in the Charleston press during the autumn of 1783. The radicals were more active, but the quarrel died down in winter, to flare up again in the spring. Ralph Izard wrote Thomas Jefferson from his plantation near Charleston, April 27, 1784: "Would to God I could say that tranquility was perfectly restored in this State. Dissensions and factions still exist, and like the Hydra, when one head is destroyed, another arises."14

At this time the dissension was in full blast again; and the issue was more clear-cut than before. Each faction had acquired one of the daily newspapers as its organ. In the early spring the Marine Anti-Britannic Society adopted resolutions, described by its opponents as ridiculous and pompous jargon, and requested each of the gazettes of the city to publish them. Mrs. Timothy, who owned the Gazette of the State of South Carolina, gave them due publication; but John Miller, publisher of the South Carolina Gazette and General Advertiser, who was also state printer, "in terms very preemptory and disrespectful, refused to give any place in his gazette to the society's resolutions, evidencing thereby, as well as by some former acts of his toward the said Society, that his Press is not thoroughly uninfluenced and free". The society therefore resolved unanimously to boycott Miller's journal as regarded both subscriptions and advertisements.15

The Anti-Britannics now resorted to an attempt at terrorism. About the middle of April they posted handbills in Charleston listing eleven persons, either loyalists or recent immigrants, and giving them notice to quit the state within ten days. About the same time they or their allies did violence to the person of a Mr. Rees in the interior of the state; and Mrs. Timothy's paper published reports, apparently false, of similar lynch-law punishments inflicted upon. other persons. In denouncing these proceedings, a citizen writing under the anonym "Another Patriot ", in the South Carolina Gazette and General Advertiser, April 28, expressed the hope that persons about to sail from Charleston for Europe would not take the handbills too seriously nor spread lurid reports of them abroad, to add to the damage done the state by the reports of the "pumping match" of the previous year. He assured them that an association of the good citizens was being formed, resolutely determined to

"South Carolina Historical Magazine, II. 194.

15 Preamble and resolutions printed in the Gazette of the State. of South Carolina, April 8, 1784.

uphold the magistracy and to put it out of the power of malcontents to disturb the peace of the city.

The city council resolved on April 30 that in order to secure the suppression of any riots which might occur, the bell of St. Michael's church should be rung in case of turbulence, whereupon the intendant and wardens should at once repair to the state-house; and it commanded that all magistrates and constables, with their emblems of office, and all regular and peaceable citizens should rally likewise at the state-house and "invigorate the arm of Government ".16 This riot ordinance seems to have turned the tide against the Anti-Britannics. The writer "Another Patriot" declared in Miller's paper of May 11, that most of those who had been followers of Gillon and Fallon had joined the society in the belief, fostered by its officers, that it would advantage them in their trades; but that these had at length seen through the cheat, and that at a recent meeting only thirty-nine members could be assembled out of the six hundred of which the society's hand-bills had boasted.1 This exposure was shortly followed by ridicule. A citizen calling himself "A Steady and Open Republican ", in a long article denouncing Fallon, turned upon the society:18

Carolina, that has not twenty of her natives at sea, immediately to set up an Anti-Britannic Marine Society! Laughable indeed! If intended to raise a Navy, that is expressly contrary to the Confederation, and I confess the very thought of such a thing gives me the gripes, before we recover from the endless expences and embarrassments of the wretched bargain made for us only in the bare hire of one single Frigate.

Several anonymous radicals replied,1o and a running controversy was kept up in the gazettes from May to September. There was apparently for some years no further attempt at mob action;20 the radicals turned their attention instead to getting control of the government through polling majorities in the elections. Of this and the outcome, John Lloyd wrote from Charleston, December 7, 1784, to his nephew, T. B. Smith:21

16 South Carolina Gazette and General Advertiser, May 1, 1784.

17 Ibid., May 11, 1784.

18 Ibid., May 13, 1784.

19 One of these was driven to reveal himself as William Hornby.

20 E. g., M. Petrie wrote from Charleston, May 18, 1792, to Gabriel Manigault, Goose Creek, S. C.: "M. de Kereado has taken passage in Garman, just arrived. He is very right to leave this town, full of discord. Threatenings of raising the mob against some lately arrived have succeeded to the impuissance of raising or getting the Law against them." MS. in possession of Mrs. Hawkins Jenkins, Pinopolis, S. C.

21MS. in the Charleston Library.

The malecontented party having by several publications endeavoured to influence the electors throughout the State to make choice of men to represent them in the General Assembly, from the lower class: the gentlemen of property, to preserve their necessary consequence in the community and in order to prevent anarchy and confusion, have almost unanimously exerted themselves in opposition to them, and it is with particular pleasure I inform you they have pretty generally carried their point, especially in this city, so that we shall have exceedingly good representation, and by that means support the honor and credit of the country.

Antagonism to the aristocracy, however, was strong, particularly in the upland districts, where the cotton industry did not yet exist and a small-farming régime prevailed. Izard wrote to Jefferson, June 10, 1785: "Our governments tend too much to Democracy. A handicraftsman thinks an apprenticeship necessary to make him acquainted with his business. But our back countrymen are of opinion that a politician may be born such, as well as a poet."22

The governor gave notice on March 17, 1785, that all persons who had been exiled from sister states and had taken refuge in South Carolina must leave the state within one month from the date of this notice; and that all persons who had been banished from South Carolina and had returned thither under the provisions of the British treaty, might remain in the state for three months longer than the treaty stipulated, but must depart immediately at the end. of that period.23 This action by the executive put an end to the anti-loyalist agitation; but the parties already in process of evolution continued to develop and to oppose one another upon successive new issues.

The prevalence of acute hard times, reaching extreme severity. in 1785 and 1786, turned public attention sharply to questions of industry, commerce and finance. A narrative of economic developments in the state following the close of the British war was related by Judge Henry Pendleton in his charges to the grand juries of Georgetown, Cheraws and Camden Districts, in the autumn of 1786, in part as follows:24

No sooner had we recovered and restored the country to peace and order than a rage for running into debt became epidemical; instead of resorting to patient industry, and by slow and cautious advances, recovering to the state that opulence and vigor which the devastations 22 South Carolina Historical Magazine, II. 197.

23 Gazette of the State of South Carolina, March 21, 1785.

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24 Charleston Morning Post, December 13, 1786. Practically the same narrative is given as a preface to an argument for the repeal of the stay laws", in a letter signed "Appius ", addressed to the General Assembly, and printed in the Charleston Morning Post, February 15 and 16, 1787.

of a long and calamitous war had destroyed, individuals were for getting rich by a coup de main, a good bargain-a happy speculation was almost every man's object and pursuit. Instead of a rigid economy, which the distress of the times so strongly excited, what a load of debt was in a short time contracted in the purchase of British superfluities, and of lands and slaves for which no price was too high, if credit for the purchase was to be obtained; these fatal effects too were accelerated by the very indulgence and lenity which afforded the happiest opportunity to those in debt to surmount all their difficulties-I mean the act for prescribing the payment of old debts by instalments of one, two and three years; had this act totally abolished all old debts, men could not with more avidity have run on contracting new ones. How small a pittance of the produce of the years 1783, 4 and 5, altho' amounting to upwards of 400,000 1. sterling a year, on an average, hath been applied toward lessening old burdens? Hence it was that men not compelled by law to part with the produce of these years, for the payment of their debts, employed it to gain a further credit in new purchases to several times the amount, and thereby forced an exportation of it to foreign parts, at a price which the markets of consumption would not bear-what then was the consequence ?—the merchants were driven to the exportation of gold and silver, which so rapidly followed, and with it fled the vital spirit of the government: -a diminution of the value of the capital, as well as the annual produce of estates, in consequence of the fallen price, the loss of public credit, and the most alarming deficiencies in the revenue, and in the collection of the taxes; the recovery of new debts, as well as old in effect suspended, while the numerous bankruptcies which have happened in Europe, amongst the merchants trading to America, the reproach of which is cast upon us, have proclaimed to all the trading nations to guard against our laws and policy, and even against our moral principles.

The governor's message to the general assembly on September 26, 1785, called attention to the calamitous state of affairs existing: money scarce, men unable to pay their debts, and citizens liable to fall prey to aliens. The House at once appointed a committee of fifteen members on the state of the republic. In the open debate which this large committee held on September 28, several remedies for the shortage of money were proposed: one by Ralph Izard on behalf of conservatives, that the importation of negro slaves be prohibited for three years and the community thereby saved from the constant drain of capital which it was suffering; others by radical representatives for the more obvious but more short-sighted recourse to stay-laws and paper money.25 The assembly at this session adopted the proposal of paper money, and authorized its issue to the amount of £100,000, to be loaned to citizens, on security, for five years at seven per cent.2


25 Charleston Evening Gazette, September 26 and 28, 1785.

"Act of October 12, 1785, in Cooper and McCord, S. C. Statutes at Large, IV. 712-716.

Next spring, the depression had grown even more severe. Many Charleston merchants had gone out of business and the rent of shops had fallen one-third.27 Commodore Gillon, a member for Charleston, proposed in February, 1786, a stay-law, granting debtors three years in which to meet obligations, and exempting them from sheriffs' sales meanwhile. After long debate this bill passed the House, but it was apparently defeated in the Senate. In December Gillon stood for re-election, and was returned as twenty-eighth in the list of thirty representatives from the Charleston parishes.28 In February, 1787, Gillon reintroduced his bill for a stay-law, and gave warning that if it were not enacted, something more radical might be expected. Dr. Ramsay, in opposition, denied the right of the legislature to interfere in private contracts, and said that the experiments which South Carolina had already made in stay-laws had shown that they promoted irresponsibility and did no substantial good. He declined to believe that the people would become tumultuous if the bill should fail to pass. Mr. John Julius Pringle. Speaker of the House, advocated the bill, stating that the voice. of the people was so strenuous in its favor that it would not be sound policy to reject it. The bill passed the committee of the whole house by a large majority,29 and was enacted. Other debates on phases of the same question occurred in 1788, which further widened the rift between conservatives and radicals.30

The industrial depression continued for several years longer, until in the middle nineties the development of the cotton industry, beginning with the introduction of the sea-island variety in 1786 in Georgia and two or three years later in South Carolina, and hastened and immensely enlarged in its possibilities by Whitney's invention of the short-staple gin, in 1793, brought a renewal of general prosperity. To illustrate the situation of numerous planters during the hard times, a letter is extant from Joseph Bee to a creditor, October 19, 1789:1

"Letter of John Lloyd, then president of the Senate of South Carolina, to T. B. Smith, April 15, 1786. MS. in the Charleston Library.

His vote was 203, as against 426 for David Ramsay and Edward Rutledge, at the head of the poll, 422 for C. C. Pinckney, 413 for Thomas Pinckney, and similar votes for other conservative gentry. Charleston Morning Post, December 5, 1786.

20 Charleston Morning Post, February 19, 1787. Act of March 28, 1787, in Cooper and McCord, Statutes at Large, V. 36-38.

30 Debates on this subject, in the autumn session of the legislature, may be found in the Charleston City Gazette or Daily Advertiser, October 23, 1788.

MS. among the Gibbes papers, owned by the Gibbes family, Columbia, S. C.

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