Dublin, 8th December 1852.
Sin—In the course of your remarks on the "Lady Abolitionists " in your last week's paper, .you object to all external interference with American sla- very, in the following terms—" The American people are divided on the sub- ject. The best intellects of the Republic, who are most conversant with it, are most anxious for a settlement, but most conscious that the time is not ripe for it, and that to precipitate a settleinent could only induce frightful cala- mity. The principles of the future settlement are predetermined." Now, the 'Lineman people, as respects slavery, consists of three classes. First, the uncompromising Slaveholders, who defend the system on every plea of justice, religion, and sound policy ; secondly, the Abolitionists, who plead for its immediate abandonment, on account of its utter injustice, wick- edness, and impolicy ; and thirdly, the vast majority, who admit much that the Abolitionists say against slavery, but consider the danger of a dissolution of the Union fraught with greater evils than the maintenance of slavery.
To which of these classes do the "beat intellects" you speak of belong ; and what are "the principles of the future settlement" which they have " predetermined " ? Calhoun was the undisguised apostle of slavery. Clay was the zealous advocate of every. compromise by which slavery has been extended, and of the last and most infamous of them all—the Fugitive Slave Law. Webster has just departed—his death hastened by the agony of dis- appointed ambition, and by his contemptuous rejection by the South in the late Presidential nomination, although in his old age he threw away his repu- tation as the champion of liberty in his zeal to secure her favour and sup- port. To this end he promoted the Fugitive Slave Law with the whole weight of his talents and. official position.
You cannot be unaware that the slave power is continually increasing in political influence ; but you may not have seen a recent speech of Senator Benton of Missouri, in which he recounts the triumphs of the Slave interest, and the concessions and sacrifices in territory, blood, and treasure, made on its behalf by the Free States of the Union. It would perhaps tend to allay what you consider a mischievous agitation, if you would point out in what direction "the principles of the future set- tlement are predetermined," how the "best intellects" evince their anxiety for a settlement, and why they are are "moat conscious that the time is not ripe for it." By such explanation it is possible that the English people may come to feel with you, that the best way of opposing the aystem of American slavery is not to meddle with it, in thought, word, or deed, but to leave it to be settled, in their own good time, by the "best intellects ' 'of the American nation.
[This correspondent appears to see American politics solely from an Eng- lish point of view : we explained the American views on Slavery and some other questions, two or three months ago.
We had read a full report of the speech of Mr. Benton, in an American newspaper, not now in our possession. If we remember rightly, its object was to show the Southern States that they need not fear for their institutions and interests from the extension of the territory. Of this we are quite cer- tain, that it was intended to serve a political purpose collateral to the ques- tion of Slavery ; and that Mr. Benton is not a man who can be considered to weigh his words in all their bearing. Our correspondent's estimate of Clay is erroneous. Clay's principles are marked in the resolutions which he in- troduced to the Legislature of his native State, Kentucky, proposing a dis- tant date, prospectively, for the grant of freedom to every person born after that date. Those resolutions gave a new interest to the question of slavery, and the principle is recognized by a number of Americans daily increasing, and well known in American society ; though the general consent to avoid a public discussion of the subject veils the movement that is really going on, to the distant view. We have reason to believe that the same principles might have been formally recorded in Maryland and Ohio if heated Aboli- tionist agitations had not checked the advance of opinion in that direction. The object of Clay's compromise was not to secure any larger advantages for the Slaveholding interests, but rather to establish treaty stipulations between conflicting interests, so that the conduct of the question throughout the Union might be reduced to better form and greater order; and there is no student of American polities who is not aware at the fruit that Clay regarded that compromise as a new point of departure in the progress towards the ultimate settlement of the Slavery question on temperate and rational grounds. Webster, for all his talents, was a trimmer ; and his trimming it was that damaged him far more than his Northern sympathies. Calhoun, the great Nullificator, is dead, and his party lass dead as he.
In his classification of the Americana, our correspondent omits two im- portant classes,—the slaveholders who would be glad to abolish a bad insti- tution if they could see the means of doing it without social danger in the process ; and that new but very important and daily increasing party, who desire to extend the "free soil" of the Republic, although so many of them refuse political cooperation with the Abolitionists. Our objection to the interference of the London ladies arises from the fact that they can do nothing towards the end which they propose, though they can do something to hinder it : they will only conciliate the sympathy of those who are already of their own opinion the thorough Abolitionists; every other party, including those several parties that desire the ultimate extinction of slavery, will be irritated and embarrassed by such intervention from without.—En.]