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public halls, of the profits of travel and transportation, of the emoluments of foreign and domestic trade, and of numerous other advantages which have their origin exclusively in wealthy, enterprising, and densely populated cities.
Nothing is more evident than the fact, that our people have never entertained a proper opinion of the importance of home cities. Blindly, and greatly to our own injury, we have contributed hundreds of millions of dollars towards the erection of mammoth cities at the North, while our own magnificent bays and harbors have been most shamefully disregarded and neglected. Now, instead of carrying all our money to New-York, Philadelphia, Boston, and Cincinnati, suppose we had kept it on the south side of Mason and Dixon's line-as we would have done, had it not been for slavery-and had disbursed it in the upbuilding of Norfolk, Beaufort, Charleston, or Savannah, how much richer, better, greater, would the South have been to-day! How much larger and more intelligent would have been our population. How many hundred thousand natives of the South would now be thriving at home, instead of adding to the wealth and political power of other parts of the Union. How much greater would be the number and length of our railroads, canals, turnpikes, and telegraphs. How much greater would be the extent and diversity of our manufactures. How much greater would be the grandeur, and how much larger would be the num ber of our churches, theatres, schools, colleges, lyceums, banks, hotels, stores, and private dwellings. How many more clippers and steamships would we have sailing on
the ocean, how vastly more reputable would we be abroad, how infinitely more respectable, progressive, and happy, I would we be at home.
That we may learn something of the importance of cities in general, let us look for a moment at the great capitals of the world. What would England be without London? What would France be without Paris? What would Turkey be without Constantinople? Or, to come nearer home, what would Maryland be without Baltimore? What would Louisiana be without New Orleans? What would South Carolina be without Charleston? Do we ever think of these countries or States without thinking of their cities also? If we want to learn the news of the country, do we not go to the city, or to the city papers? Every metropolis may be regarded as the nucleus or epitome of the country in which it is situated; and the more prominent features and characteristics of a country, particularly of the people of a country, are almost always to be seen within the limits of its capital city. Almost invariably do we find the bulk of the floating funds, the best talent, and the most vigorous energies of a nation concentrated in its chief cities; and does not this concentration of wealth, energy, and talent, conduce, in an extraordinary degree, to the growth and prosperity of the nation? Unquestionably. Wealth develops wealth, energy develops energy, talent develops talent. What, then, must be the condition of those countries which do not possess the means or facilities of centralizing their material forces, their energies, and their talents? Are they not destined
to occupy an inferior rank among the nations of the earth? Let the South answer.
And now let us ask, and we would put the question particularly to Southern merchants, what do we so much need as a great Southern metropolis? Merchants of the South, slaveholders! you are the avaricious assassinators of your country! You are the channels through which more than one hundred and twenty millions of dollars$120,000,000-are annually drained from the South and conveyed to the North. You are daily engaged in the unmanly and unpatriotic work of impoverishing the land of your birth. You are constantly enfeebling our resources and rendering us more and more tributary to distant parts of the nation. Your conduct is reprehensible, base, criminal.
Whether Southern merchants ever think of the numerous ways in which they contribute to the aggrandizement of the North, while, at the same time, they enervate and dishonor the South, has, for many years, with us, been a matter of more than ordinary conjecture. If, as it would seem, they have never yet thought of the subject, it is certainly desirable that they should exercise their minds upon it at once. Let them scrutinize the workings of Southern money after it passes north of Mason and Dixon's line. Let them consider how much they pay to Northern railroads and hotels, how much to Northern merchants and shop-keepers, how much to Northern shippers and insurers, how much to Northern theatres, newspapers, and periodicals. Let them also consider what disposition is made of it after it is lodged in the hands of the North.
Is not the greater part of it paid out to Northern manufacturers, mechanics, and laborers, for the very articles which are purchased at the North-and to the extent that this is done, are not Northern manufacturers, mechanics, and laborers directly countenanced and encouraged, while, at the same time, Southern manufacturers, mechanics, and laborers, are indirectly abased, depressed, and disabled? It is, however, a matter of impossibility, on these small pages, to notice or enumerate all the methods in which the money we deposit in the North is made to operate against us; suffice it to say that it is circulated and expended there, among all classes of the people, to the injury and impoverishment of almost every individual in the South. And yet, our cousins of the North are not, by any means, blameworthy for availing themselves of the advantages which we have voluntarily yielded to them. They have shown their wisdom in growing great at our expense, and we have shown our folly in allowing them to do so. Southern merchants, slaveholders, and slave-breeders, should be the objects of our censure; they have desolated and impoverished the South; they are now making merchandize of the vitals of their country; patriotism is a word nowhere recorded in their vocabulary; town, city, country-they care for neither; with them, self is always paramount to every other consideration.
Having already compared slavery with freedom in the States, we will now compare it with freedom in the cities. From every person as yet unconvinced of the despicable
H. R. HELPER, ESQ.,
Your letter to Mayor Wood has been handed to me for an answer, which I take pleasure in giving as follows:
The last assessment of property in this city was made in August, 1856.
The value of all the real and personal property in the city, according to that assessment, is $511,740,492.
A census of the city was taken in 1855, and the number of inhabitants at that time can be obtained only from the Secretary of State. Very truly yours,
A. S. CADY.
STATE OF NEW-YORK, SECRETARY'S OFFICE,
H. R. HELPER, Esq..
Yours of the 17th February, in regard to the population of the city of New York, is before me. According to the census of 1855 the population was
629,810 515,547 - 371,223
Very truly yours,
As to the population now, you have the same facilities of judging that we have from the above table.
A. N. WAKEFIELD, Chief Clerk.