By Nathaniel Weyl
Publication through Nathaniel Weyl, William Marina
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61. , 349. AMERICAN STATESMEN 36 those, who are held in servitude. But, as this is a subject that has never employed much of my thoughts, these are no more than the first crude ideas that have struck me upon the occasion. This remarkable letter concluded with some comments about the way in which the enemy was waging war. "Sir Guy Carleton is using every art to soothe and lull our people into a state of security," Washington wrote. "Admiral Digby is capturing all our vessels, and suffocating as fast as possible in prisonships all our Seamen, who will not enlist into the service of his Britannic Majesty; and Haldimand, with his savage allies, is scalping and burning on the frontiers.
Lafayette had been a consistent champion of the Negro from the moment of his arrival in America. He doubted that the Negro was equal to the white man in intelligence, but held that inequality of ability could never justify slavery. "It is unquestionable," he wrote, "that differences of intelligence exist among different races of men, and that in this respect some appear far superior to others, but none are on that account the less entitled to the enjoyment of civil and political liberty. , p. 90.
Washington had thought about this matter. He had thought hard and for a fairly long time. Despite his distaste for the institution of slavery, Washington resisted all efforts of outsiders to free his slaves or those of his fellow planters. As Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army and later as President of the United States, he used his enormous influence to have slaves emancipated by the British returned to their former masters and to assure France of American support in crushing the slave uprising in Haiti.
American Statesmen on Slavery and the Negro by Nathaniel Weyl