Richmond (VA) Dispatch, "The Slave Trade and Slave Stealing," May 28, 1859

    Source citation
    "The Slave Trade and Slave Stealing," Richmond (VA) Dispatch, May 28, 1859, p. 2: 2.
    Newspaper: Publication
    Richmond Daily Dispatch
    Newspaper: Headline
    The Slave Trade and Slave Stealing
    Newspaper: Page(s)
    Newspaper: Column
    Date Certainty
    Sayo Ayodele, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print.  Spelling and other typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.

    The Slave Trade and Slave Stealing.

    A Southerner, who signs himself "A Slaveholder," has written a letter to the N.Y. Times, which seems to coincide with a suggestion of this journal, that one of the probable reasons for a revival of the slave trade, -(from his approval of which, however, we entirely dissent,) is to be found in the constant depredations of the Northern Abolitionists upon the property of their neighbors, and the necessity that exists of supplying that place of these thefts by a remedy "entirely within the control of the South." Before stating what the remedy is, he gives, by way of illustration, an account of the famous Great Red River Raft, which is composed of drift wood, lying and combined together in every form and position. This raft ascends the river against its own current and maintains its character through hundreds of years. Its apparent movement, but real progress up the river is explained in this way: "The decay at its lower end is about equal to the supply of fresh materials at the upper end."

    The South therefore, he thinks, is justified in making up for the decay of its laboring material at the northern end, by importing on its southern border a supply of fresh material, either under sanction of Congress when it shall have repealed the laws against the trade, or in open defiance and nullification of such unconstitutional legislation. And not only are they going to do this, but have determined to import at least ten Africans, to be civilized, enlightened and instructed, for every one slave brought to that condition and run off by the negro-stealers. Faster than the rotting off at the north end of the slave line, will the new flesh be produced at the South end.

    Two wrongs do not make a right, and abolition kidnapping from the South does not justify Southern kidnapping from Africa. But it is none the less certain that, so long as the underground railroad is in operation, the slaves will ply between its extreme Southern terminus and the coast of Africa, and that no vacuum will be permitted in the labor between its termini. We are opposed to the slave trade, but abolitionists, by their own wrong doing, are [stopped?] from becoming its censors.

    How to Cite This Page: "Richmond (VA) Dispatch, "The Slave Trade and Slave Stealing," May 28, 1859," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College,