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THE SLAVE POWER :
AN ATTEMPT TO EXPLAIN THE REAL ISSUES INVOLVED
J. E. CAIRNES, M.A.,
PROFESSOR of JURISPRUDENCE AND PoliticAL EconoMY IN QUEEN's college, GALway; AND
3734/-)“I could easily prove that almost all the differences, which
the Southern and Northern States, have originated in Slavery,” —DE Tocqueville.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1862, by
In the Office of the Clerk of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern District of New York.
LITTLE by way of introduction is needed for an American edition of the present volume. The object of the work is stated clearly and concisely in the author's preface. Considering Slavery as the true origin of the civil war now existing, he treats of its economic basis, of the organization, tendencies, development, and external policy of slave societies, and of the career and designs of the slave power, with the calmness of an impartial and philosophic observer, and in a popular and practical manner. Democratic institutions, territorial extension, tariff questions, state rights, secession, and all other subjects, which either at home or abroad have been made use of to complicate the quarrel, are here put aside as irrelevant; and the philosophic observer concentrates the attention of his readers on the simple issue at stake—“whether the Power which derives its strength from slavery shall be set up with enlarged resources and increased prestige, or be now once for all effectually broken.”
Similar views and arguments relating to this all-absorbing topic may no doubt be found scattered through the current literature of the day, expressed with all the warmth natural to those whose feelings and interests are immediately affected. Earnest and thoughtful books have also been written here by men whose testimony may be relied upon, and which have had more or less influence upon public opinion. But the present volume has an advantage over any work written on this side of the Atlantic, that it is free from any imputation of party or sectional bias; that it has something of the tone of a historic analysis of a grand social drama which has been acted, rather than of one of which the curtain of the fifth act has just risen; and it will on that account be acceptable to men of all shades of political opinion, while its clear style and systematic arrangement of subject will be grateful to all, young as well as old. The
viii PREFA CE TO THE AMERICAN EDITION.
larly distinguished for the compact and clear summary of its operations in important political crises, from the date of the Missouri Compromise Act to that of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill. In the concluding pages the author ventures to foretell how the drama will end. As prophecy nowadays is not an irreversible fiat, but simply an impressive form of admonition, those who do not like its intimations can easily take precautions against their fulfilment, but it must be by the argument of acts, not by that of words. From the present date to the first of January next, the project of Emancipation proposed in the recent Proclamation by the President will engross the minds of all. This proclamation, which has been added to the American edition, will be found on the next page. It marks an important crisis in the war. The whole question of Slavery will for the next three months be canvassed with renewed energy: and the American publisher conceives that in issuing this work he will furnish a hand-book which contains a well digested survey of the political and social problems involved. Though the position of affairs has changed since these pages were originally written, they will be none the less a timely aid and guide to thought.
I, ABRAHAM LINColN, President of the United States, and Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy thereof, do hereby proclaim and declare, that hereafter, as heretofore, the war will be prosecuted for the object of practically restoring the constitutional relation between the United States and the people thereof, in which States that relation is or may be suspended or disturbed.
That it is my purpose at the next meeting of Congress to again recommend the adoption of a practical measure, tendering pecuniary aid to the free acceptance or rejection of all the Slave States, so called, the people whereof may not then be in rebellion against the United States, and which States may then have voluntarily adopted, or thereafter may voluntarily adopt, immediate or gradual abolishment of slavery within their respective limits, and that the effort to colonize persons of African descent, with their consent, upon this continent, or elsewhere, with the previously obtained consent of the governments existing there, will be continued.
That on the first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, all persons held as slaves within any State, or any designated part of a State, the people whereof shall be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and for ever, free ; and the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognise and maintain the freedom of such persons, and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom.
That the Executive will, on the first day of January aforesaid, by proclamation, designate the States, or parts of States, if any, in which the people thereof respectively shall then be in rebellion against the United States; and the fact that any State or the people thereof shall on that day be in good faith represented in the Congress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such State shall have participated, shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony, be deemed conclusive evidence that such State and the people thereof are not in rebellion against the United States.
That attention is hereby called to an Act of Congress, entitled, “An Act to malzo an additional artiala of war ” annroved March 13 1862.