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Emigration, therefore, in its relationship to protection as the means of working it out, is well understood in America by Chambers of Commerce and manufacturers; and also by the Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, as shewn in the following letter addressed by him to Thomas Bayley Potter, Esq., Manchester, England, and published in the Examiner and Times, March 7, 1865, along with an introductory letter from Mr. Potter.
EMIGRATION TO THE UNITED STATES.
“To the Editor of the ' Examiner and Times.'
“Pitnacree, Dunkeld, March 4, 1865. “MY DEAR SIR,—I have this day received the enclosed letter from the Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, which I shall be glad if you will publish in your valuable paper.
“The high character of Mr Beecher, and the undoubted standing of many of the gentlemen connected with the American Emigrant Company, justify me in laying before my fellow-countrymen this letter with the fullest confidence.
"I wish the ruling class in this country would take timely warning and do full justice to labour at home, both socially and politically, rather than permit it to be diverted to other lands. Apply the principle of free trade, which simply means impartial justice and unrestricted competition, to land,
and the laws and customs which regulate its tenure here, as well as to every department of church and state, and we should not then see many of the best of our labouring class expatriated from their native country. All privileges held by the few which can be proved to be detrimental to the many are as unsafe as they are unjust.-I am, my dear sir, yours truly,
THOMAS B. POTTER “ Brooklyn, New York, Jan. 16, 1865. “Dear Sir,—I believe I am rendering a service, not merely to a very trustworthy and honourable association, but to the depressed labouring classes of great Britain, in commending the American Emigrant Company to your confidence, and that of the British public.
"This company is composed of gentlemen of the highest social and pecuniary standing ; many of whom I know personally, and some of whom are among my best friends. It has been organised for the purpose of supplying the demand for labour in this country (so great that it has sometimes been spoken of as a labour famine) with the over-abundant labour of Europe ; thus rendering a service of great value to employers here, and of still greater value to the ill-paid and ill-fed labourers there. No undertaking was ever based upon a more legitimate demand for it, and the machinery employed by the company is admirably adapted to its end.
It receives orders from manufacturers, and others
in want of labourers, for a certain number and description of men. This order is by the next mail sent to one of their numerous agents in Great Britain or Europe, and by an early steamer the men are brought to New York, and by the company transported to the place where they are to be employed. The employer ordering the men advances the expenses of their emigration, and they bind themselves to labour for him for a year, and repay the advances from their wages.
“ Thus, the European labourer, who has not the means of improving his condition by emigration, has the means supplied, and when he comes over, he does so, not as has generally heretofore been the case, upon an uncertainty as to employment and destination, but with the certainty of a home and good wages.
In addition to this the company assumes the protection and care of all emigrants who choose to come at their own expense to its care, and finds them employment in the interior of the country, removing them at once from the many evils inseparable from a detention in New York. And all this the company does without charge to the emigrant, but looking wholly to the employer for its compensation.
“ The company does not profess to be a purely philanthropic one, but while doing a great and truly philanthropic work, has undertaken it wholly on business principles. The gentlemen composing the company are among our best business men, and the
assurance of its success lies, as I think, in its business character.
“ I learn that the operations of the company abroad have been embarassed by a suspicion, quite general, that the agents are engaged, either directly or indirectly, in obtaining recruits for the United States Army. Let me assure you that the suspicion is wholly unfounded.
“I speak from my personal knowledge of the active managers of the company, and from particular inquiry made on the subject. The legitimate object of the company, which is one of too great importance to be needlessly hazarded, would be wholly defeated by engaging in such a business.
“I understand from them that they would be glad of a most rigid investigation of any particular case that may seem suspicious. Whatever may have been done by others, you may rest assured that this company has nothing to do with obtaining emigrants for any other purpose than that of labourers in the ordinary industrial pursuits.
“The Chamber of Commerce of the city of New York, whose opinion commands respect everywhere, has just adopted, by a unanimous vote, a report of a committee on immigration, setting forth the great demand for labour here, and the special inducements presented to foreign labourers to emigrate to this country, and commending in direct terms both the object and the character of the American
Emigrant Company.—Very respectfully and truly yours,
H. W. BEECHER.” "Thomas Bayley Potter, Esq., Manchester,
Thus it is we see how Mr. Beecher, an avowed freetrader when in this country, lends himself to promote the vast schemes of the Northern protectionists, and to build up America at the expense of, and to the injury of other nations—whilst Mr. T. B. Potter's remedy is like Dame Partington's mop to dry up the Atlantic.
Sectional jealousies and bitterness were created by the two policies which obtained between the North and South. This was very natural, as both desired to rise in the scale of prosperity, but when high tariffs prevailed Southern interests went down, and Northern ones rose higher; but when tariffs were low, the Southern interests rose higher, and Northern ones went down. “Hence,” says the Charleston Mercury, “the Northerns live upon us, and the South affords them the double gratification of an object for hatred, and a field for plunder.”
When, therefore, Northern and Southern representatives met each other in Congress and introduced their different schemes, whether on the tariff question, or the extension of territory, or the improvement of rivers, or the building of railways by land grants, each tried to intimidate and frustrate the designs of each other; so that each believing that the other