Address on the annexation of Texas, and the aspect of slavery in the United States, in connection therewith: delivered in Boston November 14 and 18, 1845 Page: 38 of 56
This book is part of the collection entitled: From Republic to State: Debates and Documents Relating to the Annexation of Texas, 1836-1856 and was provided to The Portal to Texas History by the UNT Libraries Special Collections.
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be possible for them to rely on slave labor, when grain can
be grown by free labor with so much greater advantage.
Grain, we are told, may now be grown even in the Northern
Free States, and transported by railroad and canal to the
remotest markets which have been supplied by the Slave
States, and sold there, when the price has not been kept up
by a foreign demand, at so low a rate as to make its continued
production in the Slave States wholly unprofitable,
and even sometimes ruinous. It seems probable just now
that the scarcity of bread-stuffs abroad, with the rapidly
increasing consumption in this country, may cause the demand
to be equal to the supply from all the States for some
time to come, and may keep up the price sufficiently to
remunerate the planter in the Slave States ; and it is to be
remembered that in the States in question, in addition to
grain, the growing of tobacco, a precarious, I admit, and
not usually a profitable crop, and the raising of stock, not
wholly unsuited tor their slave-holding condition, will be available
resources. Even if these fail from the competition of
free labor, the raising of negroes, of which a monopoly must
be allowed to them, will continue to be suggested alike by
the necessities and the degradation of their condition, and
by the relation they will sustain to the growing slave-market
of the cotton-planting States. But, after all, let the case be
made out never so strongly against the economy and expediency
of slavery, - let the sacrifice of interest be what it may,
-let the profits of grain-growing wither from its grasp, - let
the land become valueless, because with slave labor no crop
can be grown upon it, - let the slave-holder be thus compelled
to see himself impoverished, as well as to feel himself degraded,
I agree with Cassius M. Clay, and for the reasons I have
given, that it will be the last effect of economical considerations
to extort from him his consent to abandon slavery.
"Leave it to itself, -let it alone, and slavery will die
out; and the annexation of Texas will only accelerate the
result"; -so say the anti-abstractionists and the Free State
Democrats, and all others who seek to excuse their indifference
and inaction at the present moment.
Do they reason from the past ? This is not a new policy
which is about to be tried. It is now the seventieth year of
the independence of the United States ; - -and we may learn
wisdom from experience. The Declaration of Independence,
it may be remembered, proclaimed the doctrine of human
freedom and equality as the basis of our political creed.
The preamble to the Constitution of the United States
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Phillips, Stephen C. Address on the annexation of Texas, and the aspect of slavery in the United States, in connection therewith: delivered in Boston November 14 and 18, 1845, book, January 1, 1845; Boston. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth2361/m1/38/: accessed September 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.