The National Era
Washington, D.C.: 23 June 1853


  Hartford, Conn., May 27, 1853.—I subjoin sundry remarks, consequent upon perusal of the Era of May 26th, which are at your service, for consideration, publication, or neglect. . . .

  2. The peculiar—at least a peculiar—power of "Uncle Tom's Cabin" is, that it does not, except incidentally, twang the immemorially jingled, and often jangled, heart-string of "love." The conflagration spread of its influence arises from the concentrated and almost inspired vividness of its single appeal to a human consciousness only lately waking up; the consciousness of that Divine Justice which, after long and miserable dreaming, the Pilgrim Father dimly saw, through the Atlantic sea-fog, Hungary through battle-smoke, the Free Democracy of the United States almost clearly enough in the broad bright light of their natal freedom, and which soon the whole human race will see, eye to eye, and no longer as in a glass, darkly; and will love, honor, and obey.

  That is my conclusion, upon reading Mrs. E.D.E.N. Southworth's "Mark Sutherland," which is well arranged and elegantly written; but in whose kaleidoscopic construction the perspicacious gazer may see, by looking in at one end, how all its elements are to be nicely framed into a pleasing tableau at the other, which is not emancipated from the dominion of that hymenaeo-romantic theory whose throne is exalted high in almost all novels, from the noble and beautiful old Greek love story of "Cupid and Psyche," and the coarser Arabian "Antar," down to the milkman's milk-and-water of modern magazines, which encircles all the tale within the ring-fence of matrimony, and caps its loftiest climax with an epithalamium.

  3. I see sundry notices of disposition to be made, by the Colored Convention at Rochester, of funds to be received from Mrs. Stowe. I desire to ask (with no motive except desire of information) on what authority it is proposed to enumerate this embryonic fowl?—how it comes to be supposed that she designs to place funds at the disposal of the convention, and what funds? . . .

Very respectfully, H. F.