A Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin; presenting the Original Facts and Documents upon which the Story is founded; together with corroborative Statements verifying the Truth of the Work. BY HARRIET BEECHER STOWE. Boston: J. P. Jewett & Co. 1853. 8vo. pp. 262.
MRS. STOWE's new work must certainly be valued for the information which it imparts, though it can hardly afford pleasure to any one. Let us say at once, however, that we regard her as perfectly justified in its publication. The volume will inflame the passion. It will do in some quarters a vast deal of mischief. Its specific contents, fortified as their credibility appears to be, will be impugned just as positively as were the fictitious representations, to authenticate which as real facts she has published this mass of painful and revolting details. But if there is blame anywhere, at whose door will it lie? Certainly not at Mrs. Stowe's. She has been accused of downright falsehood; and those of her hostile readers who have stopped short of that gross charge, have questioned the verisimilitude and general fidelity of her portraiture of slavery. If the interests of truth did not call for these corroborative documents,--if the mild and forbearing course which alone can help in the bloodless removal of the darkest scourge of civilization might have suggested that this publication had been have been suppressed, as tending to acrimony,--still it was hard for the authoress to rest under the imputation of falsehood, when she could so triumphantly disprove it. Those who have driven her to this resource must now assume the responsibility of consequences.