Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter XXVIII >> Page 317

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Page 317

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
1790. The constitution then adopted recognized the
following elements : That all power comes from the
people, and is to be exercised for their benefit ; that they
are bound by no laws but such as are sanctioned by their
representatives ; that all are equally subject to the laws ;
that no freeman can be taken, or imprisoned, or deprived
of his property, or exiled, or in any manner destroyed or
deprived of life, liberty, privilege or possessions, but by
the judgment of his peers, or by the law of the land. It
also guaranteed freedom of conscience in matters of faith
and religion.
These principles of liberty and equality which pervade
the constitution, are impressed upon the laws of the state,
which were made in compliance with them. Under
these laws the people have prospered, and have been
blessed with great increase for the last fifty years. A
mild and indulgent government, with small taxation ; a
fruitful country, and the production of commodities which
form the staples of consumption for millions, and the use
of which is rapidly increasing ; encourage the citizen in
his labor and reward him for it. But few interruptions
have occurred in the progress of the state to prosperity.
Religion and education have kept corresponding pace
with the progress of agriculture among the people. Pub-
lic works of great value and cost, in every section of the
country, mark the watchful care of an intelligent legis-
The numbers of the people of South Carolina, which,
in 1765, were but one hundred and twenty-three thousand,
of all descriptions, are now, in 1839, little less than six
hundred thousand ; and this increase has been constant