Boston Atlas

January 31, 1859


A New Circular


A couple of Southern gentlemen have forwarded to the editors of the Courier copies of the Circular to be distributed among the Southern States, which contains a programme by which the slaves can escape from the bondage in which they are held.  Then plan is quite elaborate but as not one slave in ten there can either read or write, and as they have no post-office direction, it is difficult to understand how it is to reach the class to whom it is ostensibly addressed.  The Courier devotes a column and a half to its consideration, and of course treats it with grave regard and expresses its intense horror of such an audacious scheme.  We regard the whole thing as a joke, got up by some person or persons either North or South, to show the wickedness of the schemes now on foot, in some portions of the slave States, to open the African slave trade, to extend slavery, to dissolve the Union, and to steal Cuba by means of a Southern League.


The circular is a capital travestie of the platform of the “Southern Leaguers,” and we hope it will have the effect of opening the eyes of some of these gentlemen to the policy they are pursuing.  That it was not written for circulation among the states is demonstrated by the fact that copies have been sent to southern members of Congress and to “a gentleman living in Georgia,” who have applied to the editors of the Courier to know what should be done about it.  No one can read the document without being satisfied that it is intended as a mirror in which southern disunionists and Cuban fillibusters can see themselves as others see them.


It is possible that the Circular is of Southern origin, and that it is intended as a political document, to be used in future State canvasses, to strengthen the democratic cause, by holding it up as one of the schemes of “northern aggression” contemplated y the “Black Republicans,” and this to inflame the Southern mind so as either to elect the Democratic ticket and dissolve the Union.  It is fair to say that the Courier does not regard it as a Republican document nor does it hold the Republicans responsible for it.  As we have before stated, we believe that it has been written by some person for the express purpose of showing up the infamy of the Cuban theft, the thirty million bill, the Southern League schemes and the re-opening of the African slave trade.  The satire is keen and broad, and the document in this view of the case in not only well worthy of the serious attention of the Southern slave-holders, but all others.