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 Home    Documentary Heritage of the Civil War    Part 1, 2011: "A Southern Confederacy will be Formed!"    Richard Cobden letter

Richard Cobden letter, March 25, 1863

Lord John Russell

Lord John Russell

Richard Cobden

Richard Cobden

Location
Pearce Museum at Navarro College (Corsicana, Tex) External Link
Background
Richard Cobden (1804-1865), British statesman and economist, was an advocate of free trade and the limited action of government in business. He supported the Union during the Civil War.
Contents
Letter from Richard Cobden to former British prime minister Lord John Russell, urging him to use his influence to prevent the British from supplying ships and munitions to the Confederacy, reasoning that the government cannot interfere with free trade but can, in a time of extreme caution, interfere with businesses.
"A letter which I have got today from my friend Mr. [Charles] Sumner . . . corroborates what I hear from other sources of the bad effect produced in America by the building of the Alabama, & the threatened equipment of other privateers in our ports. The feeling of irritation will of course be increased when it is known that the Confederate loan (for which the British government is in no [way] responsible) has been raised in this market ... Now there are certain things which a government can do, & others which it cannot do, to prove its friendly neutrality to a belligerent state. It can do very little, & it ought not perhaps attempt to do any thing to prevent the shipment of munitions of war, which is an operation of commerce carried on by individuals. But it can do much to prevent the building & departure of ships considerably intended for ships of war, for these are not articles of regular commerce."
(See the NUCMC catalog record)
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 Home    Documentary Heritage of the Civil War    Part 1, 2011: "A Southern Confederacy will be Formed!"    Richard Cobden letter
  The Library of Congress >> Cataloging, Acquisitions
   January 2, 2013
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