Puslapio vaizdai

any other can assume over him, over his labor, or his property. This is a principle in act and deed, and not a mere speculative theorem."*

I close this strange and striking testimony, all from one man, with his farewell words to Franklin. As Pownall heard that the great philosopher and negotiator was about to embark for the United States, he wrote to him from Lausanne, under date of 3d July, 1785, as follows:

"Adieu, my dear friend. You are going to a New World, formed to exhibit a scene which the Old World never yet saw. You leave me here in the Old World, which, like myself, begins to feel, as Asia hath felt, that it is wearing out apace. We shall never meet again on this earth; but there is another world where we shall, and where we shall be understood."

Clearly Pownall was not understood in his time; but it is evident that he understood our country as few Englishmen since have been able to understand it.

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ANOTHER friend of our country in England was David Hartley. He was constant and even pertinacious on our side, although less prophetic than Pownall, with whom he co-operated in purpose and activity. His father was Hartley the metaphysician, and author of the ingenious theory of sensation. The son was born 1729, and died at Bath, 1813. During our revolution he sat in Parliament for Kingston-upon-Hull. He was also the British plenipotentiary in negotiating the definitive Treaty of Peace with the United States. He, too, has dropped out of sight. In the biographical dictionaries he has only a few lines. But he deserves a considerable place in the history of our independ


John Adams was often austere, and

*Pownall, Memorial to the Sovereigns of America, p. 55.

sometimes cynical in his judgments. Evidently he did not like Hartley. In one place he speaks of him as “talkative and disputatious, and not always intelligible"; then, as "a person of consummate vanity";† and then, again, when he was appointed to sign the definitive Treaty, he says, "it would have been more agreeable to have finished with Mr. Oswald"; ‡ and, in still another place, he records, “Mr. Hartley was as copious as usual."§ And yet, when writing most elaborately to Count de Vergennes on the prospects of the negotiation with England, he introduces opinions of Hartley at length, saying that he was "more for peace than any man in the kingdom." || Such testimony may well outweigh the other expressions, especially as nothing of the kind appears in the correspondence of Franklin, with whom Hartley was much more intimate.

The Parliamentary History is a sufficient monument for Hartley. He was a frequent speaker, and never missed an opportunity of pleading our cause. Although without the immortal eloquence of Burke, he was always clear and full. Many of his speeches seem to have been written out by himself. He was not a tardy convert. He began as "a new member" by supporting an amendment favorable to the Colonies, 5th December, 1774. In March, 1775, he brought forward" propositions for conciliation with Ameri

ca," which he sustained in an elaborate speech, where he avowed that the American Question had occupied him already for some time:

"Though I have so lately had the honor of a seat in this House, yet I have for many years turned my thoughts and attention to matters of public concern and national policy. This question of America is now of many years' standing."¶

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In the course of this speech he thus

John Adams, Works, Vol. IX. p. 517.

† Ibid., Vol. III. p. 137.

1 Ibid., Vol. VIII. p. 54

§ Ibid., Vol. III. p. 353.

Ibid., Vol. VII. p. 226.

Parliamentary History, Vol. XVIII. p. 553.

acknowledges the services of New Eng- namely, that every slave in North land at Louisburg: —

"In that war too, sir, they took Louisburg from the French, singlehanded, without any European assistance, - as mettled an enterprise as any in our history, an everlasting memorial of the zeal, courage, and perseverance of the troops of New England. The men themselves dragged the cannon over a morass which had always been thought impassable, where neither horses nor oxen could go, and they carried the shot upon their backs. And what was their reward for this forward and spirited enterprise, for the reduction of this American Dunkirk? Their reward, sir, you know very well; it was given up for a barrier to the Dutch."*

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All his various propositions were negatived; but he was not disheartened. On every occasion he spoke, - now on the budget, then on the address, and then on specific propositions. At this time he asserted the power of Parliament over the Colonies, and he proposed on the 2d November, 1775, that a test of submission by the Colonists should be the recognition of an act of Parliament, "enacting that all the slaves in America should have the trial by jury."+ Shortly afterwards on the 5th December, 1775, he brought forward another set of "propositions for conciliation with America," where, among other things, he embodied the test on slavery, which he put forward as a compromise; and here his language belongs, not only to the history of our Revolution, but to the history of antislavery. While declaring that in his opinion Great Britain was "the aggressor in everything," he sought to bring the two countries together on a platform of human rights, which he thus explained:

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America should be entitled to his trial by jury in all criminal cases. America cannot refuse to accept and enroll such an act as this, and thereby to re-establish peace and harmony with the parent state. Let us all be re-united in this, as a foundation to extirpate slavery from the face of the earth. Let those who seek justice and liberty for themselves give that justice and liberty to their fellow-creatures. their fellow-creatures. With respect to putting a final period to slavery in North America, it should seem best that, when this country had led the way by the act for jury, each Colony, knowing their own peculiar circumstances, should undertake the work in the most practicable way, and that they should endeavor to establish some system by which slavery should be in a certain term of years abolished. Let the only contention henceforward between Great Britain and America be, which shall exceed the other in zeal for establishing the fundamental rights of liberty for all mankind."

The motion was rejected; but among the twenty-three in its favor were Fox and Burke. During this same month the unwearied defender of our country came forward again, declaring that he could not be "an adviser or a well-wisher to any of the vindictive operations against America, because the cause is unjust; but at the same time he must be equally earnest to secure British interests from destruction," and he thus prophesies :

"The fate of America is cast. You may bruise its heel; but you cannot crush its head. It will revive again. The new world is before them. Liberty is theirs. They have possession of a free government, their birthright and inheritance, derived to them from their parent state, which the hand of violence cannot wrest from them. If you will cast them off, my last wish is to them, May they go and prosper!"

Again, on the 10th May, 1776, he vindicated anew his original proposi

* Parliamentary History, Vol. XVIII. p. 1050.

tion, and here again he testifies for ought to obtain between the two counpeace and against slavery.

"For the sake of peace, therefore, I did propose a test of compromise by an act of acceptance, on the part of the Colonists, of an act of Parliament which should lay the foundation for the extirpation of the horrid custom of slavery in the New World. My motion was simply an act of compromise and reconciliation; and, as far as it was a legislative act, it was still to have been applied in correcting the laws of slavery in America, which I considered as repugnant to the laws of the realm of England and to the fundamentals of our constitution. Such a compromise would at the same time have saved the national honor." *

All gratitude to the hero who at this early day vowed himself to the abolition of slavery. Hartley is among the first of abolitionists, with hardly a predecessor except Granville Sharp, and in Parliament absolutely the first. Clarkson was at this time fifteen years old, Wilberforce sixteen. It was only in 1787 that Clarkson obtained the prize for the best Latin essay on the question, "Is it right to make men slaves against their will?" It was not until 1791 that Wilberforce moved for leave to bring in a bill for the abolition of the slave-trade. Surely it is a great honor for one man, that he should have come forward in Parliament as an avowed abolitionist, while he was at the same time a vindicator of our independence.

Again, on the 15th May, 1777, Hartley pleaded for us, saying:

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"At sea, which has hitherto been our prerogative element, they rise against us at a stupendous rate; and if we cannot return to our old mutual hospitalities towards each other, a very few years will show us a most formidable hostile marine, ready to join hands with any of our enemies. . . . . I will venture to prophesy that the principles of a federal alliance are the only terms of peace that ever will and that ever

Parliamentary History, Vol. XVIII. p. 1356.

tries." *

On the 15th June, immediately afterwards, the Parliamentary History reports briefly:

"Mr. Hartley went upon the cruelties of slavery, and urged the Board of Trade to take some means of mitigating it. He produced a pair of handcuffs, which he said was a manufacture they were now going to establish."†

Thus again the abolitionist reappeared in the vindicator of our independence. On the 22d June, 1779, he brought forward another formal motion "for reconciliation with America," and, in the course of a well-considered speech, denounced the ministers for "headstrong and inflexible obstinacy in prosecuting a cruel and destructive American war." On the 3d December, 1779, in what is called "a very long speech," he returned to his theme, inveighing against ministers for "the favorite, though wild, Quixotic, and impracticable measure of coercing America."§ These are only instances.

During this time he had maintained a correspondence with Franklin, which appears in the "Diplomatic Correspondence of the Revolution," and all of which attests his desire for peace. In 1778 he came to Paris on a confidential errand, especially to confer with Franklin. It was on this occasion that John Adams met him and judged him severely. In 1783 he was appointed a commissioner to sign the definitive Treaty of Peace.

These things belong to history. Though perhaps not generally known, they are accessible. I have presented them partly for their intrinsic value and their prophetic character, and partly as an introduction to an unpublished letter from Hartley which I received some time ago from an English friend who has since been called away from important labors. The letter concerns emigration to our coun

* Parliamentary History, Vol. XIX. pp. 259, 260. + Ibid., p. 315. Ibid., p. 904. § Ibid., p. 1190.

try and the payment of the national may or may not be possible, or to predebt.

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"Note. This is a copy of the material portion of a long letter from D. Hartley, the British Commissioner in Paris, to Lord Sydenham, January, 1785. The original was sold by C. Robinson, of 21 Bond Street, London, on the 6th April, 1859, at a sale of Hartley's MSS. and papers chiefly relating to the United States of America. It was Hartley's copy, in his own hand.

"The lot was No. 82 in the sale catalogue. It was bought by J. R. Smith, the London bookseller, for £2 6s. od. "I had a copy made before the sale. "Joseph Parkes.

"London, 18 July, '59."

The letter is as follows: —

"MY LORD,-In your Lordship's last letter to me, just before my leaving Paris, you are pleased to say that any information which I might have been able to collect of a nature to promote the mutual and reciprocal interests of Great Britain and the United States of America would be extremely acceptable to his Majesty's government. . . . . Annexed to this letter I have the honor of transmitting to your Lordship some papers and documents which I have received from the American Ministers. One of them (No. 5) is a Map of the Continent of North America, in which the land ceded to them by the late treaty of peace is divided, by parallels of latitude and longitude, into fourteen new States. The whole project, in its full extent, would take many years in its execution, and therefore it must be far beyond the. present race of men to say, 'This shall be so.' Nevertheless, those who have the first care of this New World will probably give it such directions and inherent influences as may guide and control its course and revolutions for ages to come. But these plans, being beyond the reach of man to predestinate, are likewise beyond the reach of comment or speculation to say what

dict what events may hereafter be produced by time, climates, soils, adjoining nations, or by the unwieldy magnitude of empire, and the future population of millions superadded to millions. The sources of the Mississippi may be unknown. The lines of longitude and latitude may be extended into unexplored regions, and the plan of this new creation may be sketched out by a presumptuous compass, if all its intermediate uses and functions were to be suspended until the final and precise accomplishment, without failure or deviation, of this unbounded plan. But this is not the case; the immediate objects in view are limited and precise; they are of prudent thought, and within the scope of human power to measure out and to execute. The principle indeed is indefinite, and will be left to the test of future ages to determine its duration or extent. I take the liberty to suggest thus much, lest we should be led away to suppose that the councils which have produced these plans have had no wiser or more sedate views than merely the amusement of drawing meridians of ambition and high thoughts. There appear to me to be two solid and rational objects in view: the first is, by the sale of lands nearly contiguous to the present States (receiving Congress paper in payment according to its scale of depreciation) to extinguish the present national debt, which I understand might be discharged for about twelve millions sterling.

"If your Lordship will cast your eye upon the map to the south and east of the Ohio and the Mississippi, you will see many millions of acres, which, valued at a single dollar per acre, would discharge many millions sterling. The whole space within the boundaries lately conceded to the United States, together with the unoccupied lands eastward of the great rivers, may perhaps contain near half a million of square miles (in acres, perhaps three hundred millions, more or less). A sixth part of this, the nearest parts

being likewise the most valuable, would discharge the whole of their national debt. It is a new proposition to be offered to the numerous common rank of mankind in all the countries of the world, to say that there are in America fertile soils and temperate climates in which an acre of land may be purchased for a trifling consideration, which may be possessed in freedom, together with all the natural and civil rights of mankind. The Congress have already proclaimed this, and that no other qualification or name is necessary but to become settlers, without distinc tion of countries or persons. The European peasant, who toils for his scanty sustenance in penury, wretchedness, and servitude, will eagerly fly to this asylum for free and industrious labor. The tide of immigration may set strongly outward from Scotland, Ireland, and Canada to this new land of promise. A very great proportion of men in all the countries of the world are without property, and generally are subject to governments of which they have no participation, and over whom they have no control. The Congress have now opened to all the world a sale of landed settlements where the liberty and property of each individual is to be consigned to his own custody and defence. The first settlers, as the seedlings of a new State, will be under a temporary government of their own choice, provided it be similar to some one of the present American governments. But as soon as their numbers shall amount to twenty thousand, their temporary government is to cease, and they are to establish a permanent government for themselves, and whenever such new State shall have of free inhabitants as many as shall be in any one the least numerous of the original States. These are such propositions of free establishments as have never yet been offered to mankind, and cannot fail of producing great effects in the future progress of things. The Congress have arranged their offers in the most inviting and artful terms, and lest individual peasants and laborers

should not have the means of removing themselves, they throw out inducements to moneyed adventurers to purchase and to undertake the settlement by commission and agency, without personal residence, by stipulating that the lands of proprietors being absentees shall not be higher taxed than the lands of residents. This will quicken the sale of lands, which is their object. For the explanation of these points, I beg leave to refer your Lordship to the documents annexed, Nos. 5 and 6, namely, the Map and Resolutions of Congress, dated April, 1784. There is another circumstance would confirm that it is the intention of Congress to invite moneyed adventurers to make purchases and settlements, which is the precise and mathematical mode of dividing and marking out for sale the lands in each new proposed State. These new States are to be divided by parallel lines running north and south, and by other parallels running east and west. They are to be divided into hundreds of ten geographical miles square, and then again into lots of one square mile. The divisions are laid out as regularly as the squares upon a chessboard, and all to be formed into a Charter of Compact.

"They may be purchased by purchasers at any distance, and the titles may be verified by registers of such or such numbers, north or south, east or west; all this is explained by the document annexed, No. 7, viz. The Ordinance for ascertaining the mode of locating and disposing of lands in the Western Territory. This is their plan and means for paying off their national debt, and they seem very intent upon doing it. I should observe that their debt consists of two parts, namely, domestic and foreign. The sale of lands is to be appropriated to the former.

"The domestic debt may perhaps be nine or ten millions, and the foreign debt two or three. For payment of the foreign debt it is proposed to lay a tax of five per cent upon all imports until discharged, which, I am informed, has already been agreed to by most

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