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5. The following is a statement of the wages paid in both countries to the same class of workers, and the percentage of one over the other:
Hoping above will be satisfactory, we remain, yours truly,
JOSEPH NIMMO, JR., Esq.
CLARK THREAD COMPANY,
CLARK THREAD COMPANY, NEWARK, N. J., April 3, 1882.
DEAR SIR: We did make an error in our estimate of March 31, having omitted to take the difference in time of working hours between the two countries, but having looked it over and made that correction, we find the following result, which we think correct: Girls' average, Newark over Paisley, 99 per cent.; men's average, Newark over Paisley, 104 per cent., or 101 per cent. total average.
This is as near as we can get at it, and think you can safely take it as conclusive.
JOSEPH NIMMO, JR., Esq.,
Chief of Bureau.
It is thus apparent (1) that the laboring population of the United States, engaged in manufactures, is much better paid than is the laboring population of Great Britain; (2) that the ability to manufacture many kinds of goods and to pay the present rates of wages is due to the protective system; and (3) that the operatives employed in the manufactories of the United States are in the receipt of better wages and in the enjoyment of more of the comforts of life than they could command in 1860.
Nor is it true that the cost of maintaining a family in 1880 was greater than in 1860, assuming always the same facts as to the scope of the purchases made.
The statement of the prices of leading articles of general use, prepared by the Chief of the Bureau of Statistics, but based upon a
report made by the Director of the Mint, with the aid of other authorities noted, establishes the proposition in a general sense.
In a period of twenty years the habits of a people undergo great changes, and in many instances the laborer's savings are not greater at the end of the period than at the beginning; but, in the meantime, he and his family have enjoyed a larger share of the comforts and conveniences of domestic life.
If the deposits in the savings banks are a test of the relative condition of the laboring classes as to the possession of capital, their aggregate accumulations were immensely greater in 1880 than in 1860. Statement of Prices of leading articles in the New York market in 1860 and 1880.
(Report of the Director of the Mint, 1881.)
a. From Report of N. Y. Produce Exchange of New York, 1880.
This table indicates that the cost of living was not greater in 1880 than in 1860, and the census tables prove that the wages of the operatives in the mills were increased in that period by an addition of twenty per cent., showing an annual gain to that class of laborers of one hundred and sixty million dollars. That vast sum they have either held as capital or they have expended it in additions to personal and family comforts.
But the advantages of protection do not end thus. A system which adds twenty per cent. to the wages of one class of operatives
affects equally the wages of every class of laborers within the influence of the system.
In 1880, the number of inhabitants in the United States of the age of ten years and upwards was nearly thirty-seven million, and of these more than thirteen million were employed in agriculture, trade, transportation, mechanics, manufactures, and mining. Of the thirteen million, two million and seven hundred thousand, or one-fifth of the whole, were employed in manufactures. Upon the basis of a direct gain to them by virtue of the system of protection of one hundred and sixty million dollars annually, and upon the theory that the laborers in other branches of industry enjoy equal benefits, the total gain to the laboring population is swollen to the enormous sum of eight hundred million dollars.
If liberal allowances be made for errors, or even for exaggerations, there will remain a substantial quantity of truth justifying the statement that any change of policy which affects unfavorably the manufacturing industries of the country, and especially any change which transfers the business in any sensible degree to England or to the Continent of Europe, is a policy fraught with peril to every laborer and to every capitalist in the land.
The transfer of half a million of laborers from the mills to mining and agriculture would prostrate the entire system of labor for the whole country.
When the demand for labor is checked the demand for the products of labor diminishes also.
A single illustration will give voice to the magnitude of the evils that are incident to a loss of the means to purchase the products of industry in accustomed quantities.
Of the entire population of the country, not less than thirty million are dependent directly upon the proceeds of labor for the means of subsistence.
If these means are reduced annually to the extent of ten dollars only for each person, the aggregate decrease in the demand for the products of labor is three hundred million dollars.
Under the protective system, one interest, and one only, has languished, — the foreign carrying trade upon the ocean.
Business upon the ocean is attended with more perils than wait upon business on the land, and the returns are more uncertain.
During the war period the added dangers not only prevented the increase of our commerce, but they caused the destruction of that
which existed. Upon the return of peace, the opportunities for employment in agriculture, in manufactures, in the construction of railways, and in operating them, were so many and attractive that the ocean was neglected.
The overthrow of our manufacturing system would be attended with the loss of these opportunities, and thousands of laborers would be driven to the sea for employment and subsistence.
As long as this nation is, in its domestic industries, the most prosperous of the nations having intimate commercial relations with each other, so long will our doings upon the ocean be very insignificant when compared with our business upon the land.
It is understood that the Republican party is so pledged to the system of protection that no changes can be made under its lead or with its consent that shall tend to transfer the business of manufacturing to other countries, or in any sensible degree impair the demand for labor in the United States, or lessen its rewards.
It is understood, also, that the Republican party favors protection to agricultural products and raw materials, coupled with a system of drawbacks on the exportation of goods composed in whole or in part of materials on which duties have been paid.
THE POLICY OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IN REGARD TO THE
OLLOWING the close of the Revolutionary War, and previous to the adoption of the Constitution, the States that claimed title by virtue of the colonial charters to the lands lying west of the thirteen original colonies, and east of the Mississippi River, ceded their rights to the United States. These lands so added were the subject of a Constitutional provision in these words: "The Congress shall have power to dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory, or other property belonging to the United States."
For the first half century after the organization of the government, these lands were a source of revenue to which prominence was given in all the estimates of the Treasury Department, and in the financial debates in Congress.
Grants were made to new States for educational purposes, and for public improvements. Bounties of lands were given to soldiers and sailors, and finally large concessions were made by alternate sections to companies authorized to construct railways over the public domain. When grants were made to railways the price of the reserved lands was increased one hundred per cent.
By a statute passed in 1841, all the public lands not specially reserved were made subject to preemption by actual settlers at one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre.
Rights were limited to one hundred and sixty acres. Previous to the passage of that act settlers who were upon the public lands had a right of preemption extended to them for a like quantity of land, and at the same price, when the claimant was in actual possession. The policy of the government for the first fifty or sixty years was marked by five distinct features: (1.) Sales of lands for revenue; (2.) grants to States for educational and other public purposes; (3.)