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: 50 of 56
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cient to supply the wants of their masters, and who are
doomed to subsist upon the slightest possible allowance of
food and clothing. How much commerce can grow out of
the supply of the wan-ts of slaves ? A little salted meat,
pork, and fish, of the lowest quality and value, - a few
coarse cottons and woollens, - some rough-hide shoes, - and
hide-cuttings enough to make whips for them, comprise very
nearly the variety of purchases which are made for tile
slaves. How is it possible for a population, through the
supply of their wants, and I will add through the productiveness
of their labor, to do less for colnmerce than is done by
a slave population ? And then, as to the wants of their mnasters,
considering how few the masters are, in proportion to
the slaves, -with all their reckless prodigality and undiscriminating
luxury, how comparatively little, much as it often
exceeds what they pay for, is their aggregate consumption !
How little beyond the mere supply of personal wants does
their condition call for or admit of! But little need be or is
expended upon their buildings ; the cultivation of their plantations
requires but few implements and vehicles; and beyond
sending away their crops and bringing back their scanty
supplies, they have no disposition and no ability to engage
in any business. There can be no greater mistake than to
consider it for our benefit that they cannot manufacture for
themselves, and that they must rely on us in a great measure
to feed and clothe tlhem, and to furnish the necessaries, conveniences,
and comforts which they pay for out of their crops.
Abolish slavery, give them free labor, make them free laborers
themselves, let them do enough for themselves to enable
all the people to supply all their wants, and beyond supplying
them to accumulate a surplus capital, - let education
diffuse knowledge, - let labor be divided and subdivided,
until all mechanical and manufacturing employments suited
to their circumstances shall be introduced amongst them, let
public improvements be successfully prosecuted, -let
them thus become intelligent and virtuous, and industrious
and wealthy, and depend upon it we shall not have a diminished
or less profitable commnerce with them, -they will
only be larger and safer, and in all respects better, customers
than we have ever found them, - we shall still be Yankees
enough to produce or manufacture or import what, with
their rapid increase of wants, they will still need, and they,
as well as we, shall realize, that, without Texas, the present
country - only let it be a free country - may become all
that commerce or patriotism can desire. To abolish slavery
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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/m1/50/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.