The New York Times
Unsigned Notice
18 September 1852

Uncle Tom in England.

  We publish in another part of our paper this morning the review of Uncle Tom's Cabin in London Times of which mention was made in the recent Telegraphic summary of Foreign news. The article, as well as the book, created a great sensation in England, and will be read with great interest throughout the United States. It is written with that consummate ability with which every department of the Times is habitually characterized, and presents in a very striking style views and sentiments of decided importance upon the general subject.

  "Uncle Tom's Cabin" has created almost as great a sensation in Great Britain, as in this country. Here it has been read by everybody in every section;—and even those who complain most of its unfairness and exaggeration, concede the ability by which it is marked and the interest which pervades it. It is bought and read almost as freely at the South as at the North; and cannot fail to make a profound impression upon the public mind there as well as here.

  In England several large editions of it have been issued in rapid succession, and it is read with universal avidity. The great mass of English readers fasten upon it, of course, as material from which to feed their prejudices against the United States. The great body of the English journals speak of it in this light and hold it up as confirming the hostile representations of the worst class of English writers upon American affairs. At the same time nearly all of them evince a remarkable degree of sensitiveness to its sharp strictures on the condition of the Laboring Classes in England. In many of the leading Monthly and Weekly publications, this feature of the book receives special attention. They seem even more anxious to repel its attacks upon the social evils of England, than to fix attention upon its exhibition of the abominations of Slavery in America. This feeling has not a little significance. It shows that the influence of the book upon the laboring classes of England, is regarded with serious apprehension. It is feared that, in their eagerness to hold up American Slavery to the detestation of English laborers, they may unwittingly arouse a deep dissatisfaction with their own condition. This feeling was distinctly traceable in the very able letter from a distinguished English Author to an American friend, which we published some time since.

  The article from the Times, which we publish to-day, is written in a different spirit, and for a different purpose. It is an elaborate and exceedingly able defense of the slave-holders as a class, in the United States, from the sweeping and indiscriminate warfare that is waged against them. Without seeking to justify Slavery, to excuse its wrongs or to deny its essential and gigantic evils, it looks also at the difficulties which surround it, at the utter impossibility of its sudden and violent abolition without involving infinitely greater evils than those which now exist, and at the propriety and the necessity of considering the subject candidly and with reference to feasible and practicable results. One point which it presses is worthy of special attention, from those who sincerely desire the ultimate and safe removal of this evil; the fact, namely, that this can only be brought about by the voluntary efforts of the slave-holders themselves; and that it cannot be forced by extraneous and violent pressure. There are indications that this fact is beginning to impress itself upon the public mind in this country; and that, without destroying or weakening the interest felt in the removal of Slavery, it will lead to more rational discussions of the subject, and to the presentation of arguments and plans at once safer and more efficacious.

  We commend the review of the Times to special attention.