production was in the hands of such a power as that of the late United States and controlled by those who were disposed to use that control to acquire the supremacy in navigation, commerce and manufactures over all rivals there was just cause for anxiety on the part of natiosn who were largely dependent upon this source of supply for the raw material of important manufactures. But the case will be far different when peace is conquered and the independence of the Confederate States is acknowledged.
Within these States must be found for years to come the great source of cotton supply. So favorable a combination of soil, climate and labor is nowhere else to be found. Their capacity for increased production has so far kept pace with the increased demand and in time of peace it promises to do so for a long time to come. In the question of the supply of this great staple there is a world-wide interest and if the nations of the earth could choose for themselves a single depository for such an interest perhaps none could be found to act so impartially in that capacity as the Confederacy of Southern States. Their great interest is and will be for a long time to come in the production and exportation of the important staples so much sought by the rest of the world.
It would be long before they would become the rivals of those who are largely concerned in navigation, manufactures and commerce. On the contrary these interests would make them valuable customers and bind them to the policy of free trade. Their early legislation which has thrown open their navigation, foreign and coasting, to the free competition of all nations and which has imposed the lowest duties on imports consistent with their necessary revenue wants proves the natural tendency of their commercial policy. Under such circumstances cotton to Great Britain would be as abundant, as cheap and as certain as if these States were themselves her colonies. The establishment of such an empire, committed as it would be to the policy of free trade by its interests and traditions, would seem to be a matter of primary importance to the progress of human industry and the great cause of human civilization. It would be of the deepest interest to such a Government to preserve peace and to improve its opportunities for the pursuit of the useful arts. The residue of the world would find here too sources of supply of more than one of the great staples in which manufactures and commerce are most deeply interested, and these sources would probably prove to be not only constant as being little likely to be troubled by the chances of war, but also of easy access to all who might desire to resort to them.
In presenting the great importance of this question to the Government of Great Britain in its connection with their material interests you will not omit its bearing upon the future political relations between the Old and the New World. Wipower established between the great confederacies on the North American continent the fears of a disturbance of the peace of the world from the desire for the annexation of continguous territory on the part of a vast and overshadowing political and military organization will be dissipated. Under the former Union the slave-holding States had an interest in the acquisition of territory suitable to their institutions in order to establish a balance of power within the Government for their own protection. This reason no longer exists as the Confederate States have sought that protection by a separation from the Union in which their rights were endangered.
It is manifest from the nature of its interests that the Southern Confederacy in entering as a new member in the family of nations would