UNCLE TOM'S CABIN
We find an ably written letter addressed to the Union of the subject of the Cabin and the Beechers, dated Cincinnati, December 16, 1852, signed W. The remarks are in the style of a scholar, a man of talents and a sound reasoner. It does not comprise more than half a column, but comprehends much.
"Uncle Tom's Cabin.
The eccentric Dr. Lyman Beecher and all his visionary family are well known in this neighborhood. They are people of some intellectual capacity, but all fanatical and fond of notoriety. Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe is the flower of the flock in point of genius, but has more of the otter than the rose in her taste and sympathies.
Like many others, we tried to read her sable fiction, 'Uncle Tom's Cabin,' but found it a tissue of false philanthropy and misrepresentation. Her negro characters are extravagant specimens of perfection, far superior to human nature in general, and much above the common standard of 'white folks.' As it is well said in one of your articles, her argument is decidedly in favor of slavery, as the best school for virtue and refinement.
If Mrs. Stowe had been familiar with the South, she would have known that the best servants on a plantation would be the very last article sold for money, even under the pressure of debt. And yet she forces the master to sell his faithful foreman, and the mistress her favorite housemaid, whilst there were lots of common negroes on the place. In fact, her hard strained romance is inconsistent with the plainest dictates of reason and common sense. If Mrs. Stowe would visit the garrets and cellars of London, or the coal-mines of anti-slavery England, she would find some millions of miserable creatures who would be thankful for a share of the bread, meat, and clothing of our southern slaves. It is colored misery those Pharisees deplore, whilst white men, women, and children may starve and rot in wretchedness without a throb of sympathy from those cold northern hearts.
We account for this colored partiality on three broad principles: Hostility to the South, a morbid appetite for mischief, and a greediness for gain. Mrs. Stowe could write a more truthful story on white slavery, but it would not sell so well; it would not meet with the same fanatical feeling and malicious zeal to give it circulation. Her book was probably written by contract, like Dickens's slanders on our country, or from venomous spleen, like the vulgarities of Mrs. Trollope. Mrs. Stowe professes to be a pious woman, but the cause of religion is not promoted by the perversion of truth, nor by the frivolous repetition of sacred names.
It is well for our country that so large a portion of the people have condemned those wicked agitators, who would sacrifice the hopes of the world to carry out a fanatical or hypocritical idea. W.
Cincinnati, December 16, 1852."
These remarks are unanswerable—no truth is more self-evident than the affirmation that a planter would almost as soon part with one of his children as his favorite servant. But as the writer very justly says—
"Mrs. Stowe could write a more truthful story on white slavery, but it would not sell so well; it would not meet with the same fanatical feeling and malicious zeal to give it circulation."
This gentleman not only shows a deep insight into human nature but a fearless independence which does honor to the American name.
Mrs. Stowe does not believe what she says herself, and may aim to pass it off as a romance, but it is the intention of the work which tells its worth. Any rational individual can see at a glance that the whole is a scheme of direct mischief, fraught with a deadly hatred against all who think different from them. The whole of this sect, of which the Beechers and Rev. Stiles Ely are at the head, and were the reformers of the old Pilgrim Church (or as we call them) the Church & State bigots, whose persecutions are well known subjects of history. The monsters put innocent men, women, and children to death, cut out their tongues, cut off their ears, bored their tongues with red-hot irons, stripped women naked, and whipped them till the blood streamed down their backs.
This was done by the Church, which church the Beechers, with the assistance of British and American conspirators, against the toleration of religion by our constitution, which is to be effected under the cover of abolition, alias Free Democracy. Those Pilgrims, or rather descendants, were so enraged at the clause in our constitution allowing every one to worship God agreeably to their own conscience that they laid the plan of reviving the old Church about the commencement of the present century.
We remember them well when thirsting for money, blood and power, they came over in swarms from England, Scotland, Wales and North of Ireland; some of them were genteel, elegant, and learned clergymen, these went South.* Others were the very lowest of creation, and mingled with their brother conspirators of our own northern States, and established the go ahead gospel spreading business—collecting 'money for the Lord.' But our people know all about this, though perhaps they may not know so much of the Rev. Dr. Lyman Beecher as we do.
About the year 1824 and '5, we were called on business (with Lafayette) to Boston, where Dr. L. Beecher then lived as he does now, and was in the height of his pious [humor?], so far as he dare go. He preached nightly to servant girls mostly, scarcely any men went to hear him, and none at all of the first class of society as we were informed. We saw him often at our boarding house in Brattle street. But he gained much ill will by his noctural visits to gentlemen's houses—and slipping incendiary papers under their doors, and as we heard after we left Boston, he left that city and founded Lane College, near Cincinnati.