Was South Carolina's Secession Simply Synonymous with Debt Repudiation?


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#22
Something unmentioned, and therefore, by definition, powerfully significant, was the growing movement for women to gain the right to vote. Under the outward displays of masculine power, its easy to read the unsaid, unwritten and hitherto unknown anxieties for the patriarchal social structure that were determining factors in secession. And what the most potent male symbol of technological power and the mastery of nature? The transcontinental railroad.
I apologize to you also for invoking the memory of James De Bow in Charleston and arguments from silence. I am embarrassed to tell you that it just occurred to me that De Bow did not have displayed on his cotton T-shirt the three letters TRR. you win.
 
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#23
The people of the south who led the movement to secession often mentioned several perceived grievances against the north as factors in their unhappiness. Among these are a perceived threat to the institution of slavery; a perceived threat to "states' rights"; a perceived unfairness of tariffs and import duties; and deliberate non-compliance of northerners with the fugitive slave laws. Neither the transcontinental railroad nor debt repudiation can be found anywhere in the litany of southerners' castigations of northerners throughout the antebellum era. Therein lies my estimate of a zero percent factor of the TRR in causing secession and civil war.
Thanks. Now back to my question about statements concerning debt repudiation. I have provided two of them. I have a hunch there are many more. That's why I started this thread.
 

Jimklag

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#24
Thanks. Now back to my question about statements concerning debt repudiation. I have provided two of them. I have a hunch there are many more. That's why I started this thread.
Unfortunately your two quotations speak of debt repudiation as a positive byproduct of secession, not its cause.
 

CSA Today

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#25
The people of the south who led the movement to secession often mentioned several perceived grievances against the north as factors in their unhappiness. Among these are a perceived threat to the institution of slavery; a perceived threat to "states' rights"; a perceived unfairness of tariffs and import duties; and deliberate non-compliance of northerners with the fugitive slave laws. Neither the transcontinental railroad nor debt repudiation can be found anywhere in the litany of southerners' castigations of northerners throughout the antebellum era. Therein lies my estimate of a zero percent factor of the TRR in causing secession and civil war.
A speaker at an SCV meeting last night gave a talk on Southern grievance against the Republican Party in 1860. Among the grievance mentioned, in addition to threats to slavery, tariffs, and projected growing Northern political power at the expense of the South was Southern resentment at paying for internal improvements, including the TRR, that benefited the North and Mid-West. He didn't say anything about debt repudiation.
 
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#26
A speaker at an SCV meeting last night gave a talk on Southern grievance against the Republican Party in 1860. Among the grievance mentioned, in addition to threats to slavery, tariffs, and projected growing Northern political power at the expense of the South was Southern resentment at paying for internal improvements, including the TRR, that benefited the North and Mid-West. He didn't say anything about debt repudiation.
Thank you. I think you missed my point. Either way, did your speaker bring up Southern complaints that Congress had given it a $10 million subsidy for the Gadsden purchase? The omission is laughable. Poor poor South, so injured with this boon!

FYI, planters who hoped to have their debts repudiated became supporters of secession, whether elected officials mentioned that factor or not.

I assume you have no other statements by any other Southerners about debt repudiation. I am not sure what makes you and a couple other posters think that I am not aware of what the formal secessionists declared. Once again: nothing but elliptical posterity papers to cover their real desire for independence and economic hegemony. Fear from the North had absolutely nothing to do with it. That fear was nothing other than the antebellum equivalent of Henny Penny. Amazing as it may seem, with 150 years of hindsight there are still historians today who have swallowed that fairytale.
 
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#27
Unfortunately your two quotations speak of debt repudiation as a positive byproduct of secession, not its cause.
I think if you rethink what you just said, you might draw another conclusion. But maybe I err. You seem to think that planters who thought of debt repudiation as somehow less sympathetic to secession. It is certainly not how I see it.

Nevertheless, the question is Only about antebellum statements of debt repudiation.
 
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CSA Today

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#28
Thank you. I think you missed my point. Either way, did your speaker bring up Southern complaints that Congress had given it a $10 million subsidy for the Gadsden purchase? The omission is laughable. Poor poor South, so injured with this boon!

FYI, planters who hoped to have their debts repudiated became supporters of secession, whether elected officials mentioned that factor or not.

I assume you have no other statements by any other Southerners about debt repudiation. I am not sure what makes you and a couple other posters think that I am not aware of what the formal secessionists declared. Once again: nothing but elliptical posterity papers to cover their real desire for independence and economic hegemony. Fear from the North had absolutely nothing to do with it. That fear was nothing other than the antebellum equivalent of Henny Penny. Amazing as it may seem, with 150 years of hindsight there are still historians today who have swallowed that fairytale.
He mentioned the Gadsden purchase.

I don't. It's been a long time but I pretty sure the late Dr. Eugene Drazdowski didn't mention it as a cause for secession in his Civil War and Reconstruction course at Appalachian State nor have I heard about it from another source until here.
 

uaskme

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#30
There was a thread done here in 2010. Concerning $300 million in debt the South had. Expected to be repudiated. Book referenced was American History Timeline of the Civil War pp23 by John D Wright
Don’t have it and haven’t read it
 
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#31
He mentioned the Gadsden purchase.

I don't. It's been a long time but I pretty sure the late Dr. Eugene Drazdowski didn't mention it as a cause for secession in his Civil War and Reconstruction course at Appalachian State nor have I heard about it from another source until here.
Thank you for your explicit reply to my explicit question that began this tread. Should you come across any, please advise.

I will make this quick because the Gadsden Purchase is a subject for a thread that has been closed. Nevertheless, note that I did not ask if the subject was brought up. I asked how it was brought up --i.e., did the South complain in its list of grievances that those nasty Northerners pushed $10 million down their throats for a TRR? In my way of thinking, that proves the North's milk of human kindness had not yet lost its butterfat content. I am happy to discuss the TRR, if the moderator in question reopens that important thread.

Now back to my OP.
 
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#32
There was a thread done here in 2010. Concerning $300 million in debt the South had. Expected to be repudiated. Book referenced was American History Timeline of the Civil War pp23 by John D Wright
Don’t have it and haven’t read it
Marvelous! Exactly the kind of answer I am looking for. I have never seen any specific numbers and I don't even know if they could be calculated correctly. But this certainly sounds reasonable.

You served me well. I owe you one. I will find that book.
 
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#33
If said planter owned 2,000 slaves at a low estimate of $50,000 per slave in todays money that's $100,000000.

Considering the planters were the wealthy elite in the South who held sway on who was voted in and out of state offices who also controlled or had shares in the papers or funded the various churches the main forms of communication I find your findings very plausible James.

Do you have an idea of how many Planters were in debt and was it serious enough for them to wipe said debts by leaving the Union? Also is there any source that ties in these story's in the North was it mentioned at all in Congress?.
 
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#34
If said planter owned 2,000 slaves at a low estimate of $50,000 per slave in todays money that's $100,000000.

Considering the planters were the wealthy elite in the South who held sway on who was voted in and out of state offices who also controlled or had shares in the papers or funded the various churches the main forms of communication I find your findings very plausible James.

Do you have an idea of how many Planters were in debt and was it serious enough for them to wipe said debts by leaving the Union? Also is there any source that ties in these story's in the North was it mentioned at all in Congress?.
In short, I don't know.

I have wondered about debt repudiation for a decade. Yesterday it was the very first time I have ever come across a reference to it in unmistakable terms.

Uaskme above cited a work that I intend to consult. I had no doubt that debt repudiation was one ingredient in the recipe for rebellion. I simply had not been able to document it. Starobin's book is a great one IMHO. I think it literally destroys Steve Channing's Crisis of Fear. Read it an see if you think the folks in Charleston were frightened by the prospects of a slave revolt. All that business about John Brown was nothing but a straw man --make that a hologram. Harvard grad Barney Rhett deserved a dozen honorary PhDs in straw men. He wouldn't know truth if it ran over him like a Mack truck with square wheels --to borrow a trite trope.

If you learn of anything, please advise like uaskme who served us all so well.
 

USS ALASKA

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#35
Sirs, a question...if 'debt repudiation' was a cause, or even a by-product, and no effort was made to repay that debt, how would the Confederacy ever get any outside financing again? The United States would be gun-shy and European investment houses wouldn't ignore the example set. How long could the South survive on a purely cash-and-carry, (or cotton-and-carry), basis?
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USS ALASKA
 
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#36
Sirs, a question...if 'debt repudiation' was a cause, or even a by-product, and no effort was made to repay that debt, how would the Confederacy ever get any outside financing again? The United States would be gun-shy and European investment houses wouldn't ignore the example set. How long could the South survive on a purely cash-and-carry, (or cotton-and-carry), basis?
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USS ALASKA
Thanks for your post. Good question.

There is actually a good answer besides "not long." But I only recall it vaguely. Next time I come across it, if I remember, I will reply more fully. If my memory serves me correctly, and I think I am close, the confederacy sent someone to England, hat in hand. The one who killed the deal was Robert Walker, former U.S. Senator from Mississippi (1835-1845), U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (1845-1849) and later the territorial governor of Kansas (1857). See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_J._Walker. I think it was Walker who counseld the British to beware loaning money to the Confederacy because of his own state's past performance on debt satisfaction. If you come up with the specifics before I do, please advise. You, Mr. Alaska, may also recall that it was Southerner Walker who came up with the idea of purchasing Alaska before Northerner Seward did (I think).
 
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#37
he conservatism of the North regarding property rights is further highlighted by the enthusiasm with which the Confederacy embraced confiscation as a new sovereign power. The Confederate Sequestration Act of 1861 declared all property owned by persons not loyal to the Confederate government to be the property of that government. Officials seemed to hope that the value of northern property seized would largely pay the cost of their war for independence. As in other areas of governance, the Confederacy embraced a higher degree of central state authority than did the Union government. As it happened, debts owed to northerners constituted a large part of the confiscated property. Loyal Confederate citizens came forward voluntarily to pay their debts to the government. In the postwar years, the U.S. Supreme Court viewed all of these transactions as null and defeated Confederates found themselves paying their debts twice: first in obedience to the Sequestration Act and later to their northern creditors. The doctrine of vested property rights overwhelmed Trumbull's confiscation efforts and it continued to gain strength in the post war Supreme Court. Justice Stephen Field took the lead in this regard. The case of Miller v. U.S. (1870) involved the property of a Virginian (specifically his shares in a Michigan Railroad) that were seized in 1864 and sold at auction. The court upheld confiscation, but Field joined two other justices in dissent. Field accepted instrumentalist decisions when the effort to unravel ownership of confiscated property threatened the broader stability of economic relations. But, wherever possible (e.g. Bigelow v. Forrest [1869]) Field joined majority decisions that restored confiscated property to the descendants of disloyal persons. By the end of the nineteenth century, the doctrine of vested property rights had been so thoroughly established that the older doctrine of community rights seemed anachronistic, "a remnant of Revolutionary republican fervor," writes Hamilton, that had no place in modern America (p. 107).
https://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=13473
 
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#39
Thank you for your explicit reply to my explicit question that began this tread. Should you come across any, please advise.

I will make this quick because the Gadsden Purchase is a subject for a thread that has been closed. Nevertheless, note that I did not ask if the subject was brought up. I asked how it was brought up --i.e., did the South complain in its list of grievances that those nasty Northerners pushed $10 million down their throats for a TRR? In my way of thinking, that proves the North's milk of human kindness had not yet lost its butterfat content. I am happy to discuss the TRR, if the moderator in question reopens that important thread.

Now back to my OP.
How exactly did Southerners pay for the Gadsen purchase? There was no antebellum income tax. There was no National Value Tax. There was a very low tariff that few Southerners paid. Not seeing how your argument is logical.
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#40
My Fellow Posters,

I have long felt, without any hard evidence until today, that a major ingredient in the Rebel recipe of South Carolina's Secession was the desire of planters and other Carolinian (and Southerners in general) businessmen to repudiate debts owed to New York and to the North in general. I now have in hand one piece of hard evidence in the words of a planter in Charleston. They appear on page 134 of Paul Starobin's wonderful 2017 publication entitled Madness Rules the Hour: Charleston, 1860 and the Mania for War. Thereupon Starobin quotes an unnamed planter who owned 2,000 slaves and who told a reporter, "Most of us planters are deeply in debt; we should not be[,] if out of the Union."

And on the same page, Harvard graduate, Mercury editor, fire-eater, and world-class champion of non sequiturs, Barney Rhett, Jr., "pointed out that Charleston's shopkeepers, LIKE MANY IN THE SOUTH [emphasis mine], typically purchased their inventory of goods on credit from suppliers in the North. Those debts would be suspended IN THE EVENT OF SECESSION [emphasis mine] and 'OBLITERATED FOREVER' [emphasis mine]."

While I have suspected that debt repudiation was a major ingredient, I was not hopeful of discovering it so shamelessly and clearly stated by an ostensibly chivalrous group of Southerners whom I have been led to believe were honorable above all. Barney Rhett, if not the Father of Fake News to the Fifth Power, certainly is in that family tree of fraud, though I think he got this statement correct and for which I give him an A+.

Question: Can anyone add more examples to these quite open Debt Declarations for Secession that South Carolina's December 20, 1860, Convention failed to include in their ostensibly honest and honorable but pitifully elliptical Declarations that so many contemporary historians have swallowed --hook, line, sinker, lake, boat, trailer, truck and highway-- like the unfortunate Rebel soldiers who marched to their unnecessary deaths, believing in them?

Sincerely for truth,

James
Going to war over debt repudiation makes no sense. Farmers always need credit. Who exactly will take over the credit needs of an independent Confederate nation if not the US? Why would European bankers take over supplying credit to the South if the Southern planters will repudiate their debts the same way the secessionists did to Northern financier's?
Leftyhunter
 



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