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On the contrary, all the Iron they receive from the Plantations, they pay for it in their own Manufactures, and send for it in their own Shipping. Then I inquired after his own Mines, and hoped, as he was the first that engaged in this great undertaking, that he had brought them to the most perfection.
He said it was true His works were of the oldest Standing: but that his long absence in England, and the wretched Management of Mr. Greame, whom he had entrusted with his Affairs, had put him back very much. That what with Neglect and Severity, above 80 of his Slaves were lost while he was in England, and most of his Cattle starved. That his Furnace stood still great part of the time, and all his Plantations ran to ruin. That indeed he was rightly serv'd for committing his Affairs to the care of a Mathematician, whose thoughts were always among the Stars. That nevertheless, since his return, he had apply'd himself to rectify his Steward's Mistakes, and bring his Business again into Order. That now he had contriv'd to do every thing with his own People, except raising the Mine and running the Iron, by which he had contracted his Expence very much. Nay, he believ'd that by his directions he cou'd bring sensible Negroes to perform those parts of the Work tolerably well. But at the same time he gave me to understand, that his Furnace had done no great Feats lately, because he had been taken up in building an Air Furnace at Massaponux, which he had now brought to perfection, and shou'd be thereby able to furnish the whole Country with all Sorts of Cast Iron, as cheap and as good as ever came from England.
Colonel William Byrd, Writings (N. Y., 1901), 357360 passim.
12. America as a Refuge for the
Unfortunate (1733) By GENERAL JAMES EDWARD OGLETHORPE
A benevolent Englishman. His plan of settlement had much to commend it.
IN America there are fertile lands sufficient to subsist all the useless Poor in England, and distressed Protestants in Europe; yet Thousands starve for want of mere sustenance. The distance makes it difficult to get thither. The same want that renders men useless here, prevents their paying their passage; and if others pay it for 'em, they become servants, or rather slaves for years to those who have defrayed the expense. Therefore, money for passage is neces.sary, but is not the only want; for if people were set down in America, and the land before them, they must cut down trees, build houses, fortify towns, dig and sow the land before they can get in a harvest; and till then, they must be provided with food, and kept together, that they may be assistant to each other for their natural support and protection. .
The Trustees intend to relieve such unfortunate persons as cannot subsist here, and establish them in an orderly manner, so as to form a well regulated town. As far as their fund goes, they will defray the charge of their passage to Georgia; give them necessaries, cattle, land, and subsistence, till such time as they can build their houses and clear some of their land. They rely for success, first on the goodness of Providence, next on the compassionate disposition of the people of England; and, they doubt not, that much will be spared from luxury, and superfluous expenses, by generous tempers, when such an opportunity is offered them by the giving of £20 to provide for a man or woman, or £10 to a child
By such a Colony, many families, who would otherwise starve, will be provided for, and made masters of houses and lands; the people in Great Britain to whom these necessitous families were a burthen, will be relieved ; numbers of manufacturers will be here employed, for supplying them with clothes, working tools, and other necessaries; and by giving refuge to the distressed Saltzburghers, and other persecuted Protestants,
the power of Britain, as a reward for its hospitality, will be encreased by the addition of so many religious and industrious subjects.
The Colony of Georgia lying about the same latitude with part of China, Persia, Palestine, and the Madeiras, it is highly probable that when hereafter it shall be well-peopled and rightly cultivated, ENGLAND may be supplied from thence with raw Silk, Wine, Oil, Dyes, Drugs, and many other materials for manufactures, which she is obliged to purchase from Southern countries. As towns are established and grow populous along the rivers Savannah and Alatamaha, they will make such a barrier as will render the southern frontier of the British Colonies on the Continent of America, safe from Indian and other enemies.
All human affairs are so subject to chance, that there in [is] no answering for events; yet from reason and the nature of things, it may be concluded, that the riches and also the number of the inhabitants in Great Britain will be increased, by importing at a cheap rate from this new Colony, the materials requisite for carrying on in Britain several manufactures. For our Manufacturers will be encouraged to marry and multiply, when they find themselves in circumstances to provide for their families, which must necessarily be the happy effect of the increase and cheapness of our materials of those Manufactures, which at present we purchase with our money from foreign countries, at dear rates; and also many people will find employment here, on account [of] such farther demands by the people of this Colony, for those manufactures which are made for the produce of our own country; and, as has been justly observed, the people will always abound where there is full employment for them.
For the continuing the relief which is now given, there will be lands reserved in the Colony; and the benefit arising from them is to go to the carrying on of the trust. So that, at the same time, the money by being laid out preserves the lives of the poor, and makes a comfortable provision for those whose expenses are by it defrayed; their labor in improving their own lands, will make the adjoining reserved lands valuable; and the rents of those reserved lands will be a perpetual fund for the relieving more poor people. So that instead of laying out the money upon lands, with the income thereof to support the poor, this is laying out money upon the poor; and by relieving those who are now unfortunate, raises a fund for the perpetual relief of those who shall be so hereafter.
James Edward Oglethorpe, A Brief Account of the Establishment of the Colony of Georgia, in Force, Tracts, etc. (Washington, 1836), İ. No. ii, 5-7 passim.