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east of the Mississippi River, was cov- lands, their teams, their cows, their ered with dense forests, and every acre farming implements, their axes and riof it which has been cultivated has cost fles. It was chiefly by such men that more in labor and other needful expen- the timbered lands of Ohio and Indiana ditures than it would sell for. I speak were settled. I have seen hundreds of of course of lands which have not been such beginnings, and have admired the made valuable by their minerals, or by endurance, the patience, the persevering being the sites of cities or towns, or industry, by which forest lands have their proximity to them. I question been converted into productive farms ; very much that there are any farms out. I do not say profitable farms, because side of the prairies and away from few farms are profitable. Men who, like large towns, which, if they were charged the late Dr. Gwinn, of California, have with the labor bestowed upon them at bought at low prices extensive tracts of the rate of one dollar a day for men and land which were ready for the plow, and fifty cents a day for women, and with which for a time needed no fertilization, other necessary outlays (their original and cultivated them by machinery for cost not included), and credited with the wheat, have undoubtedly made money market value of their productions, and out of them ; but as the wheat-productheir estimated present value, would ex- ing qualities of the soil become erhibit a balance on the right side of the hausted, and restoratives become necesaccount.
sary, profits will decline, and may soon No one who has known anything about disappear altogether. Lands naturally the hardships endured by the first set- adapted to grazing may yield indefitlers in the timbered lands of the United nitely good returns, because they do not States—their unceasing toil, their actual become exhausted by being grazed, but want—not of the comforts, but of the they are exceptions. The alluvial lands necessaries of life when in health, to say on the lower Mississippi, and on some of nothing of what they needed, and could its tributaries, might also be excepted, not be supplied with, in sickness, dur- for so deep is the soil that they may be ing the long and wearisome years which regarded as being practically inexhaustcame and went before they had cleared ible ; but they are subject to overflows enough of their lands to enable them to and droughts, and good crops on even begin to enjoy the fruits of their sacri- these lands are by no means certain. fices and labors ;- no one who has known On the whole, farming is not a profitanything about all this will be found able business in the United States. It among those who speak of land as being is a healthful employment, productive God's gift, and therefore property of of strong and vigorous men, but it is which there should not be absolute own- not attractive, and it is not attractive ership. In travelling from Fort Wayne because it is not profitable. Seldom do to Indianapolis, in the early days of the the sons of well-to-do farmers become West, over or rather through roads that farmers. As soon as they are old enough for a good part of the year could only to strike out for themselves, they will be travelled by men on foot or well- be found in the towns, not upon the mounted horsemen, and in noticing the farms. Nor are lands in the old States slow progress which was being made in which are not near enough to populous the opening up of the country, the ques- cities to be profitably used for market tion naturally presented itself, Would gardens, increasing in value. So far is men who could support themselves in this from being the case, that very few any other way, or in any other place, farms in those States could be sold tomake their homes in this wilderness and day for prices which they readily comundergo the privations they are subject manded twenty years ago. Investments to, and labor as they must for a good in lands which are valuable for agriculpart of their lives, before they can make ture only, are not now regarded with a comfortable living ? These settlers favor by capitalists. Better use for their were invariably poor men ; two or three money is found elsewhere. hundred dollars would cover the entire If thanks are due to God for the land, outfit of a majority of them ;-their greater thanks are due to him for the
muscle and the patient industry by which ficult to see how the public would be it has been brought under cultivation, benefited if city lots were to be confisand by which its producing properties cated, subject to the outlay that has are preserved ; and yet these cultivators been made upon them. None but Anof the soil are among those whose prop- archists have gone so far as to contend erty should be confiscated because they that the property of man's creation did not create what they have made val- should be subject to division among
the uable! Land is less able to bear heavy people or become the property of the taxes than almost any other kind of state. But in this free land of ours, for property. The taxes to which cultivated whose benefit should property of any land is now subjected in most of the kind be confiscated ? Not for the beneStates, instead of being advanced, should fit of those who are able and willing to be reduced, for the purpose of increasing work; for them there is rarely lack of the number of farmers. In most of the employment at remunerative wages, and European states, especially in Great the way to rise in the world is open beBritain, nds are heavily
fore them. Not for the benefit of se heavily, that they can be held only by who are disabled ; their wants when the rich. In that country the land- made known are relieved by private or holders are monopolists, and they will public charities. continue to be so until free trade in land Nine-tenths of the rich and prominent is established, and the taxes upon it are people of the United States have made so reduced that men of moderate means their upward way in the world without can afford to be the owners.
help from others. Of the wealthy men, No greater mistake was ever made by or the men of large social or political intelligent men than is made by those influence, whom I have known personwho suppose that monopolies can be ally, or with whose history I am familiar, broken up or weakened, and property I call to mind very few who have not can be more evenly distributed in the made themselves what they are by their United States by increase of taxes upon own exertions. With rare exceptions land, which is the cheapest thing upon they are the offspring of poor men, or of the market. It is true that in cities, men with very limited means. lots to be built upon for homes are be- portunities for those who are self-deyond the reach of all except those whose pendent to make headway in life are not incomes are considerably greater than now, it is admitted, as great in the their outlays, but this is unavoidable. United States as they were some years Cities are limited in extent, and the value ago, but one has only to look about him of lots depends upon the demand for to see large numbers of such people risthem for building purposes. In a few ing above the level from which they cities, especially in Philadelphia, some started, soon to be conspicuous in busiwho belong to what are called the labor- ness, in society, in politics. Poverty ing classes are the owners of their homes, always has prevailed and always will but this is not often the case. With prevail to a greater or less degree in all co:nparatively few exceptions those countries—in the freest as well as the whose living depends upon their man- most despotic, until, under some new ual labor are renters or boarders. dispensation, mankind become equal in
There is, however, compensation for natural gifts, in capacity and disposition these deprivations. Wages are higher to acquire and retain, in mental and in the city than in the country, and physical power. Until then the indusgreater inducements to save as well as trious and the indolent, the thrifty to spend are found there, than exist and the unthrifty, the strong and the elsewhere. Men are naturally gregari- weak, the rich and the poor, will be ous, and when thrown together they found in all communities. If all the have enjoyments of life, although sub- property in the world should be equally ject to great discomforts. In cities, divided, in a few brief years inequalities however, as well as in the country, it is like those which are now complained of labor and the fruits of labor that have would prevail. The differences in the made the ground valuable, and it is dif- circumstances of the race are to some
extent produced by unequal and unjust results, has been of immense gain to the government and laws, but they are United States. It is estimated that largely in most countries, and altogether since the formation of the Government in the United States, the result of con more than thirteen millions of immi. stitutional dissimilarities, which always grants have come to the United States, have existed and always will exist. and that if each brought with him sixty There can be no equalizing power short dollars in money, the pecuniary gain of divine power, and that power will, as has been about eight hundred millions ; heretofore, continue to be manifested but the gain in this respect has been through unchanging law.
small in comparison with what the imOf all governments which have existed migrants were worth as laborers in the in civilized nations, none has been so varied branches of industry. Estimatbad as a paternal government would ing them to have been equal in value to be. The permanency of our free insti- the slaves in the Southern States, they tutions depends more than anything have added to the national wealth three else upon our homes, our independent times as much as our national debt homes. Of all property the homestead amounted to at the close of the civil should be subject to the lightest taxa What the offsets may be to this tion. In some States humble homes are enormous gain is yet to be determined. protected against the claims of credit- The true wealth of the country is not ors; they ought everywhere to be pro- to be measured by acreage or money, tected against the tax collector. Great but by the quality of its people. If differences in the condition of men have the effect of foreign immigration should existed and will exist under all forms of prove to be deleterious to the character government, and these differences will of the population, the gain referred to be most marked under the freest, where would have been dearly acquired. natural gifts have full play. All that That the worst and most dangerous can be done by the best government is part of the population of the United to provide for the protection of life and States are foreigners, is proved by the property—the enforcement of just and criminal records and by the utterances equal laws—anything more than this of socialists. Not only have the induswould be tyranny. Without perfect trious and honest been invited to come liberty to acquire, and without protec- to our country to secure homes for tion to whatever may be lawfully ac- themselves, but the door has been quired, no matter what might be the thrown wide open to the lazy and the character of the property, enterprise disreputable—the very classes that forwould cease, and government would be eign governments have been glad to get a mockery.
rid of. Nor is this all. Money has
been furnished to enable foreigners to In looking back upon a long life, come and be workmen in our factories nothing of course seems so wonderful and shops because they would work to me as the growth of the country cheaper than native born citizens. A in the physical elements of national very large part, if not a majority, of the greatness-territory, population, wealth. population in some of our great manuThis growth, so unprecedented in the facturing towns are foreigners, many of world's history, has been effected with- whom have soon learned enough of out any change in the form of the gov- American freedom to be disorderly and ernment–without any departure from dangerous. the principles upon which it was estab The greatest mistake which has been lished, or material change of the Con- made by the Government of the United stitution which was adopted for its pre- States has been in conferring upon forservation. Nevertheless, changes have eigners the elective franchise. So short taken place, the effect of which upon our is the period required for their naturalrepublican institutions cannot be con- ization that hundreds of thousands have templated without apprehension. become voters before they knew any
Immigration, considered merely with thing about the nature of republican regard to its pecuniary and economical institutions--before even they could
speak the language of the country. must be done if our large cities are to The majority of them are doubtless be properly governed, and sufficient well-meaning people, but they natur- safeguards are to be thrown around ally fall under the influence of those persons and property. Municipal govwho are not With the working-men ernment should be created and conhave come men who are revolutionists ducted on business principles. No one by nature or have been made such by should be a voter who is not the owner real or fancied injustice in their native of property. The amount required need lands. To denounce the Government, not be large, but it should be large and to make their followers believe that enough to indicate that the voter has all governments are tyrannical and ought something at stake. Manhood suffrage to be overthrown, seems to be consid- in municipal elections is, to say the ered by these men their especial duty. least, a dangerous experiment; à law Others do not go quite so far as this; that places upon an equality in voting they are more moderate in their de- the lazy vagabond and the enterprising mands: they contend that property wealth-producing citizen is certainly should be held and owned in common, neither just nor reasonable. that exclusive ownership by the few is The Government is stronger than it oppression to the many, that the laws was a half century ago, but has not this have been made by the rich and for their increase of strength been at the expense benefit, to the great injustice of the of republicanism? We claim that the poor, and that they should be so changed United States is the freest country in that all would fare alike. If these men, the world—the only country except with their blind and ignorant followers, Switzerland in which the people have were not voters, they would be compar- equal rights. Equal rights before the atively harmless; but they are not only law are indeed possessed by everybody voters, but some of them active politi- here, but are there not combinations of cians, and when the two great parties interests which prevent the full play of are nearly evenly divided, their votes natural rights, which hold in check, if are courted by both. They are already they do not destroy, individual entera dangerous class, and are likely to be- prise? In what other country can be come more dangerous, as they are rap- found such companies as have been oridly increasing in numbers, and are be- ganized in the United States for the coming cohesive by organizations. It purpose of controlling the manufacture, is very clear to my mind that none but the transportation, and the price of native born citizens ought to have been goods? Where can be found an organpermitted to be voters; that immense ization like the Standard Oil Company, risk has been incurred-not by making which absolutely controls the market of the United States an asylum for the op- an article for which there is an immense pressed, not by opening the doors for and constant demand, and stamps out foreigners to become inhabitants, under competition; or even such companies the protection of just and equal laws, as have been formed to regulate the but by inviting them to come and par- production of iron and steel and coal ? ticipate in the law-making and gov- În what other country do manufacturerning power. The elective franchise, ers who are protected by tariffs against which ought to have been considered foreign competition, combine by trusts the most precious of all rights, has been and other agencies to advance or sustain freely bestowed upon those who have prices and prevent domestic competino knowledge of its value, and upon tion? There is no country of which those who use it for other than patriotic I have any knowledge in which busipurposes.
ness of all descriptions is so steadily Though it may now be too late, in falling into fewer and fewer hands, in the present condition of political par- which combinations are so powerful and ties, to change effectively our natural- individuals so powerless, as the United ization laws, there might be a limita- States—no country in which the solution upon the franchise in municipal tion of the labor question may be more elections, and it is very certain that this difficult. We have yet to learn that there may be as little personal freedom done, to deprive of the franchise those under republican institutions as under to whom it has been granted, but not monarchies, and that the best efforts of too late to prevent an increase of the all good citizens should be to prevent threatening danger. If our naturalizathe great republic from being a free tion laws should be so changed that country in name only. That these ef- none should vote but those who, when forts will not be wanting, I have an the change is made, have the right to abiding faith. Congress has the power, vote, and that thereafter none but the by opening the way for freer trade with native born should be voters, the danger other nations, to destroy most of the ex- would not be entirely removed, but it isting monopolies, and this power will would be greatly lessened. If this should ere long be exerted.
not be done-if revolutionists who are There is, however, one danger ahead rapidly increasing in numbers in Europe which cannot be easily surmounted. By should continue to be invited to come our naturalization laws, by extending and participate in the government of the the highest privilege to men utterly Republic-how long will not capitalists destitute of proper qualifications for its only, but industrious, frugal, liberty-lorexercise, by inviting to our shores to ing men be able to contemplate the futassist in administering the State and ure without misgivings? If the repubNational Governments men who con- lic is to be short-lived like those which sider it their duty to fight all govern- have heretofore existed, unrestricted ments, we have done much to make our manhood suffrage will be the cause. It grand experiment a failure. It is now is the only really grave danger that impossible to undo what was unwisely threatens the life of the Republic.
Not now, not now, the unfruitful sea be mine,