Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter X >> Page 173

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Page 173

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription RESOURCES OF THE SOUTH. 173
should continue rural occupations exclusively, to the rejection
of manufactures."
By no means. I am anxious, on the contrary, that our peo-
ple should embark in every department of art and trade for
which they themselves or our climate may be fitted, if only that
we may be perfectly independent of our northern brethren. We
have abundance of water-power, all over the South ; we have
the operatives on the spot ; and we raise all the raw materials
necessary for manufactures. Our water-power never congeals
with frost ; our operatives never work short, or strike for in-
creased wages, for we always keep them well fed and well
clothed ; we pension their aged ; we protect and provide for their
young ; and, instead of being sickly at the toils we impose
puny and perishing they are always fat and frolicsome, and
always on the increase ; and cotton is every day passing into
more general use, as clothing for the poorer races of mankind.
But, in the introduction of manufactures, I do not propose that
we should neglect or abandon any of our staples : I propose
that we should only employ our surplus population and lands
fin. the purpose. There are large tracts of territory, for exam-
ple, in the Carolinas, which answer for neither cotton, tobacco,
nor the smaller grains. In these very regions, there is water-
power in abundance ; and where this is not the case, there is
fuel in inexhaustible abundance, for the use of steam-power.
T propose to increase the wealth of the state by the application
of these regions to their proper use.""But if your whole country should become manufacturing,
why not ? The profits of manufactures are vastly greater than
those of the cotton culture. I have seen some statistics of
South Carolina, where it is estimated that seven hundred opera-
tives will realize as large a result, in working up the cotton,
as a whole district of twenty-five thousand people in making
the raw material. They will work up seven thousand bales,
triplicating its value, while the twenty-five thousand average
but a single bale to each inhabitant."
This is the sort of statistics which delude the world. It is
perhaps true that a district of South Carolina having twenty-five
thousand people will send but twenty-five thousand bags of cot-
ton to market. It is also true, perhaps, that eight hundred