The Collected Letters, Volume 13


TC TO THOMAS BALLANTYNE ; 16 August 1841; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18410816-TC-TB-01; CL 13: 216-217


Newby, Annan, N.B., 16th August, 1841.

My dear Sir—The Conference of Dissenting Ministers on the Corn-Laws at Manchester,1 is to begin to-morrow, if I remember rightly; it seems to me a matter rather more than usually remarkable. If any good account of it, such an account as might in some measure make one present at it, come out in any Newspaper, your own or another,2 I should be obliged to you if you would be so good as send it hither. The Dissenting Ministers, if they had due insight and faculty, have an immense task to discharge at present. Could they leave behind them as dreary and inane the things that have become a dreariness and an inanity, and discern the huge reality calling on them in these days to give it a voice, it were something! I fear they have not faculty and insight; but I should like to see what it is they do. It seems pretty certain the Corn-Laws will have to terminate before long; but, alas, the business will only be beginning then. The dumb Poor have no voice; and must and will find a voice—other than Rick-burnings, Gunpowder and Chartism!

I continue here for another week; then still another at Scotsbrig, Ecclefechan, N.B., not far from this. It still seems likely that I shall pass through Liverpool on my way homewards, and see you there before long.

With many kind wishes,

Yours always truly, /