Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Selections from the Letters and Speeches of the Hon. James H. Hammond, of South Carolina >> Message to the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of South Carolina, Nov. 28, 1843 >> Page 55

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Page 55

Documents | The Reprint Company; John F. Trow & Co. | 1866, 1978
Transcription 55
out creating a fresh one in lieu of it, or a large portion
of it, unless important changes are made in the financial
arrangements of the State. And as these changes
might, if effected at all, be so made as to discharge it
at a much earlier period, it seems to me the wisest
policy to relieve the people as speedily as possible of
this immense pressure. The debt can be bona Fide paid
only by levying taxes to the amount of it, or by using
the funds of the State already in existence. Although
I have not the least doubt that the people would, with-
out a murmur, submit to be taxed to any amount, rather
than that the slightest imputation should rest upon
the good faith of the State ; yet while there exists any
other means of meeting her obligations, I presume no
one will propose to resort to onerous taxation. The
alternative is to use the funds of the State now com-
mitted to the management of the bank.
The idea has been often, and recently gravely, put
forth, that the bank would pay the debt as it became
due, out of the profits arising from the operations of
banking. To show the fallacy of such an idea, it is
only necessary to compare the interest on the debt with
the profits of the bank. The interest amounts at this
time to one hundred and eighty-six thousand, six hun-
dred and thirty-one dollars and ninety-six cents
($186,631 96) per annum, exclusive of expenses, which
must raise the expenditure for this purpose to at least
one hundred and ninety thousand dollars ($190,000)
annually. The net profits of the bank, for the fiscal
year of 1842, were reported at two hundred and ten
thousand, seven hundred and sixty-nine dollars and
forty-two cents ($210,769 42), leaving a balance of
twenty thousand seven hundred and sixty nine dollars