Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Simms Review (Vol 15: No 2) >> Southern Lit. Journal Letter Co-signed by Simms >> Page 16

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Correspondence | 1836-12-01
Transcription Southern Lit. Journal Letter Co-signed by Simms

In the Southern Literary Journal (1 December 1836), pp. 306-307,

the editor has appended in the last section of his "From Our Arm-Chair"
a letter of commendation co-signed by Simms. It is not in Simms's Letters.

To OUR PATRONS AND THE PUBLIC-The Southern Literary Journalhas now been

in existence between one and two years, and has been sustained, during that

period, by a friendly feeling in the cdmmnnity, and a generous and steady sup-

port. Embracing articles of a popular character, and coming into the

hands of its patrons, it is calculated, as is believed, to subserve better the objects

and wishes of the reading public, than a ponderous quarterly journal, replete with

elaborate and grave discussion, and which is but seldom published.

Journals, accordingly, throughout the United States, have sustained themselves

better, and been better sustained by public opinion than the heavier Reveiws,

which meet the demands, and accommodate themselves to the tastes, of only the

most learned and critical readers. Where education is as widely diffused a it is

in our country, and is a blessing, brought home to the a door of every citizen each
individual feels an interest in the current literature of the day, is anxious to share

in the improvements of an enlightened age--and popular journal, whose numbers
appear regularly, and at short intervals, create a lively interest, and skilfully con-

ducted, may be made to bear beneficially upon the best interests of the community,

and to exert a healthful influence in enlightening the minds, and elevating the

aims of the whole people, while they, at the same time, contribute largely to inno-

cent and elegant recreation. A Southern journal of literature, publihsed in a

country abounding with accomplished and erudite Scholars, should, however, em-

body the opinions of those who are capable of giving a high tone and character to

the literature of the South, and, consequently, to American literature. It requires

no magic art, should there fortunately be a concurrence of opinion as to the promo-

tion of the object by those most competent to aid it, to accomplish these two results

in the pages of a monthly periodical. This work, which has heretofore assumed

only the character of a magazine, will therefore be so modified hereafter as to an-

ewer these ends, and its title be slightly altered to meet this arrangement. It will
embrace able and elaborate Reviews from the most competent and distinguished

pens, or, as may occasionally be preferred, articles in which an entire subject shall
be treated, setting forth opinions, to Which the work will steadfastly adhere, and

for which it will be responsible. So much is due to the learning and high literary

character of the community in which we live. The lighter kinds of literature,

those proper to a popular Magazine or Journal, will receive their due share of at-

tention, more, in fact, than they have hitherto done. The co-operation of many

writers has been secured, who are capable of imparting additional interest and