[Ads-l] "Black, colored, negro" in 1835 [emphases original]

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Thu Jun 25 05:27:27 UTC 2015

 The _necessity_ of cultivating tropical productions for home consumption,
is shown by the facts, that the _voluntary labor_ of the many millions of
the _colored races_, spread over the extremely great surface of the whole
torrid zone, does _not_ create scarcely any _cultivated_ tropical
productions for extra-tropical consumption; that the _forced labor_ of the
few millions of the _black race_ on an extremely small surface of the West
India islands, _does_ create nearly all the cultivated staples for
exportation; and that the forced labor of this black race, with its
essential auxiliaries, the skill and capital of the white race, is becoming
greatly reduced by the recent emancipating act of the British Parliament.

According to Crawford, the friend and author of "Sugar without Slavery,"
the free labor of all the natives in the immense belt of the world between
30 deg. north and 20 deg. south latitude, supplies an annual exportation of
about 61,500 tons of sugar, a quantity which is not equal to the _biennial_
crop of the slave labor of the few negroes in a little district of
Louisiana! Indeed, the greatly superior productiveness of the forced labor
of the _colored_ natives in _hot_ climates, over the voluntary labor of
those races in those climates, is doubted only by distant theorists, on the
false data obtained from the voluntary labor of the _white_ natives of
_cold_ climates, and from the unphilosophical supposition of the equality
or sameness of the different species of mankind. Yet, while this undeniable
fact unequivocally shows the relative advantage of employing our existing
slaves in the cultivation of tropical staples, it is not cited to prove
either the positive propriety or the political expediency of the perpetual
continuance of our negro slavery. On the contrary, it is expressly admitted
that the _free labor of the white race_ is so _much more productive_ than
either the _forced or free labor of the black race_, that, on this account
alone, it will, in time, become desirable to transfer all of the colored
species to their original Africa and to avail ourselves, even in tropical
agriculture, of the voluntary labor of our white citizens alone.

 As, then, the withdrawal of European skill, capital, and force from the
negro labor of the neighboring portions of the torrid zone will diminish so
greatly the agricultural production of tropical staples for exportation, it
has become _absolutely_ necessary to employ American skill, capital, and
force on the negro labor of certain portions of our own territory, to
create an equivalent supply of cultivated tropical products for the home
consumption of the United States.

The _profitableness_ of cultivating tropical staples for the foreign market
may be shown with the facts of the immense superiority of our people and of
our institutions [i.e. slavery] over those of the torrid zone. ... Our
Government is the best in the world... [T]he best colored species of the
torrid zone are inferior to the worst varieties of the white species of the
temperate zone, in the capacities as well as in the desires, of improving
their individual and social condition. Their varied _mis_-governments are
the natural results of an indolent, ignorant, immoral, imbecile, and,
consequently, poor population.

Note yesterday's "our existing slaves," like today's "our existing
employees." Somehow, I'd been under the impression that this annoying-to-me
employment of "existing" was far more modern than 1835.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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