Abbildungen der Seite

those much adored metals, gold and silver, have been procured: and so long as the sea does not overflow the land, and industry continues, so long will those metals not be wanting. And paper in the general chain of credit and commerce, is as useful as they are : since the issuers or coiners of that paper are understood to have some equivalent to

answer for what the paper is valued at: and no metal, or‘

coin can do more than find its value.

Moreover, as incontestable advantages of paper, we must add, that the charge of coining or ma king it, is by no means proportionate to that of coining of metals: nor is it subject to waste by long use, or impaired by adulteration, sweating, or filing, as coins may.



Observations concerning the Increase of .Mankind, pea/ding of Countries, tfl’c.

‘Written in Pennsylvania, 1751.

1. TABLES of the proportion of marriages to births,

of deaths to births, of marriages to the number of inhabi- '

tants, &c. formed on observations made upon the bills of mortality, christenings, &c. of populous cities, will not suit countries ; nor will tables, formed on observations made on full settled old countries, as Europe, suit'new countries, as America.

2. For people increase in proportion to the number of marriages, and that is greater, in proportion to the ease and convenience of supporting a family. When families can be easily supported, more persons marry, and earlier in life.

3. In cities, where all trades, occupations, and oflices, are full, many delay marrying, till they can see how to bear the charges of a family; which charges are greater in cities, as luxury is more common; many live single during life, and continue servants to families, journeymen to trade, Ste. Hence cities do not, by natural generation, supply themselves with inhabitants; the deaths are more than the births.


4-. In countries full settled, the case must be nearly the same, all lands being occupied andimproved to the height; those who cannot get land, must labor for others that have it; when laborers are plenty, their wages will be low; by low wages a family is supported with dil-liculty; this difli-v culty deters many from marriage, who therefore long continue servants and single. Only as the cities take supplies of people from the country, and thereby‘ make a little more room in the country, marriage is a little'. more encouraged there, and the births exceed the deaths. ‘

5. Great part of Europe is fully settled with husbandmen, manufacturers, 8tc. and therefore cannot now much encrease in people. America is chiefly occupied by Indians, who subsist 'mostly by hunting. But as the hunter, of all men, requires the greatest quantity of land from whence to draw his subsistence, (the husbandman subsisting on much less, the gardner on still less, and the manufacturer requiring least of all) the Europeans found America as fully set

_ tled, as it well could be by hunters ; yet these, having large

tracts, were easily prevailed on to part with portions of territory to the new-comers, who did not much interfere with the natives in hunting, and furnished them with many things they wanted. '

6. Land being thus plenty in America, and so cheap, as

that a laboring man, that understands husbandry, can, in a }

short time, save money enough to purchase a piece of new land, sufiicient for a plantation, whereon'he may subsist a family; such are not afraid to marry; for if they even look far enough forward to consider how their children, when grown up, are to be provided for, they see, that more land is to be had at rates equally easy, all circumstances consii dered.

7. Hence marriages in America are more general, and

more generally early, than in Europe. And if it is reck- .

oned here, that there is but one marriage per annum among 100 persons, perhaps we may here reckon two; and if ' in Europe, they have but four births to a marriage, (many of , Vol. IV. D b ' ‘




their marriages being late) we may here reckon eight, of which, if one half grow up, and our marriages are made, reckoning one with another, at twenty years) of age, our people must at least be doubled every twenty years. ,

8.‘ But notwithstanding this increase, ‘so vast is the terriq tory of North America, that it will require many ages to settle it ,fully, and till it is fully settled, labor will never be cheap here, where no man continues long a laborer for others, but gets a plantation of his own; no man continues long a journeyman to a trade, but goes among those new settlers, and sets up for himself, 81c. Hence labor is no cheaper now, in Pennsylvania, than it was thirty years ago, though so many thousand laboring people have been. imported from Germany and Ireland. . .

9. The danger, therefore, of these colonies interfering with their mother country in trades, that depend on labor, manufactures, 8tc. is too remote to require the attention of Great Britain.

10. But, in proportion to the increase of the colonies, a vast demand is growing for British manufactures- ;‘ a glorioust market, wholly in the power of Britain, in which foreigners cannot interfere, which will increase, in a short time, even beyond her power of supplying, though her whole trade should be to her colonies. . . . . . .

12. It is an ill grounded opinion, that by the labor of slaves, America may possibly vie in cheapness of manufactures with Britain. cheap here, as the labor of working men is in Britain. Any olne may compute it. Interest of money is in the colonies from 6 to 10 per cent. Slaves, one with another, cost 30!. sterling per head. Reckon then the interest of the first purchase of a slave, the insurance or risque on his life,

his clothing and diet, expences in his sickness, and loss .

of time, loss by his neglect of business, (neglect is natural to the man, who is not to be benefited by his own care or diligence) expence of'a driver to keep him at work, and his pilfering from time to time, almost every slave being,from the nature of slavery, a thief, and compare the ‘whole

The labor of slaves can never be so i


amount with the wages of a manufacturer of iron or wool in England, you will see, that labor is much cheaper there than it ever can be by negroes here. Why then will Americans purchase slaves? Because slaves may be kept as long as a man pleases, or has occasion for their labor, while hired men are continually leaving their master (often in the midst of his business) and setting up for themselves. § 8.

13.: As the increase of people depends on the encourage-ment of marriages, the following things must diminish a.

nation, viz. 1. The being conquered; for the conquerors -

will engross as many ofl‘ices, and exact as much tribute or profit on the labor of the conquered, as will maintain them in their new establishment; and this diminishingthe sub—

stance of the natives discourages their marriages,

gradually diminishes them, while the foreigners increase. 2. Loss of territory: thus, the Britons, being driven into Wales, and crowded together in a barren country, insufficient to support such great numbers, diminished, till the people bore a proportion to the produce; while the Saxons increased on their abandoned lands, till the island became full of English. And, were the English now driven into Wales by some foreign nation, there would, in a few years, be no more Englishmen in Britain, than there are now peo

_ ple in Wales. 3. Loss of trade: manufactures, exported,

draw subsistence from foreign countries for numbers, who are thereby enabled to marry and raise families. If‘ the

nation be deprived of any branch of trade, and no new‘

employment is found for the people occupied in that branch, it will soon be deprived of so many people. 4. Loss, of

food: suppose a nation has a fishery, which not only em- '

ploys great numbers, but makes the food and subsistence of the people cheaper: if another'nation becomes master of the seas, and prevents the fishery, the people will diminish in proportion as the loss of employ and dearness of provision makes it more diflicult to subsista family. 5. Bad govern-. ment and insecure property: people not only leave such a

‘country, and, settling abroad, incorporate with other na

tions, lose their native language, and become foreigners;


i. x ' _ . but the industry of those that remain being discouraged,‘

the quantity of subsistence in the country is lessened, and the, support of a family becomes more diflicult. So heavy

taxes tend to diminish va people. 6. The introduction of

slaves : the negroes brought into the English sugar islands have greatly diminished the whites there; the poor are by

this means deprived of employment, while a few families ac~~

quire vast estates, which thisy spend on foreign luxuries ; and educating. their children in the habit of those luxuries, the same income is needed for-the support of one, that might have maintained one hundred. The whites, who haveslaves, not laboring, are enfeebled, and therefore not so ge. nerally prolific ; the slaves being worked too hard, and ill fed, their constitutions are broken, and the deaths among them are more than ‘the births ; so that a continual supply is needed from Africa. The northern colonies, having few slaves, increase in whites. Slaves also pejorate the families that use them ; the white children become proud, (llSe gusted with labor, and, being educated in idleness, are rendered unfit to get a living by industry. ,A

14. Hence the prince, that acquires new territory, if he finds it vacant, or removes the natives to givev his own poo-ple room ;—the legislator, that makes effectual laws for promoting of trade, increasing employment, improving land by more or better tillage, providing more food by fisheries, securing property, 8tc.---and the man that invents new trades, arts or manufactures, or new improvements‘ in husbandry, may be properly called fathers of their nation, as they are the cause of the generation of multitudes, by the encouragement they afford to marriage. ' '

15. As to privileges granted to the married, (such as the justrz'um libcrorum among the Romans) they may hasten the filling of acountry, that has been thinnedby war or pestilence, or that has otherwise vacant territory, but cannot increase a people beyond the means provided for their subsistence. »

16. Foreign luxuries, and needless manufactures, imp0rt~ ed and used in a nation, do, by the same reasoning increase

« ZurückWeiter »