Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Letters of William Gilmore Simms. Vol. 6, Supplement >> 817a Lorenzo Sabine >> Page 331

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Page 331

Correspondence | U of South Carolina P | 2012
Transcription Additional Letters and Documents, 1828–1868 331
know whether, among my engagements, there is one made in Boston. If I get there, and can spare the time, I should be pleased to make your acquaintance—in pro. per. and satisfy you, however I may have found or fancied, good reason for censuring you as a Historian, that I have not the slightest disposition to derogate from your claims as a writer and a man still less to show myself in an
unfriendly or ungeniall attitude. Hold me, I pray you, very respect-fully

Yours &c,

W. Gilmore Simms.
P.S. [William] Aiken, to whom you refer, was one of my playmates in Boyhood. He is a very good fellow, one of the most amiable of men, in fact; but very much misplaced in Congress. By the way, I must not forget to say, that [Charles] Sumner properly owes his cudgelling to you! He followed in your tracks, and relied upon your Introductory essay. You also misled Mr. [Daniel] Webster, who fell into a good deal of spoken blundering, in Charleston, touching the vast numbers of New Englanders who perished in our battles.45 You are in error about [Commodore Abraham] Whipple's people, of whom but a small portion were New Englanders. Many were French, and a still larger proportion Southrons, particularly of North Carolina. South Carolina, about this period, had probably a larger marine of her own than New York. She was among the first to send out privateers & issue letters of Marque. Seven in ten of our Captains were natives. Whipple was a New Englander who played the very

45. In the two-volume 1864 edition of American Loyalists, Sabine recognized Simms's critique of the 1847 edition and acknowledged his error respecting the number of New England troops who served in South Carolina. He also defended his assertion that South Carolinians offered to "secede" from the Whig cause as Charleston faced capture in 1779, concluding, "Thus early, if we may believe [Richard Henry] Lee, was the germ of `secession,'—thus early the germ of the war which is now waged against a government so gentle, so motherly even, as never to have roughly, unjustly touched the hair of a cotton planter's head" (1:38-15, quotation at 45). See James Haw, "A Broken Compact: Insecurity, Union, and the Proposed Surrender of Charleston, 1779," South Carolina Historical Magazine 96 ( January 1995): 3053, for information on the 1779 "secession" plan.