Page:Nullification Controversy in South Carolina.djvu/24

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5
The Origin of the Conflict

used by the administration and artful and corrupt politicians to buy up partisans and retain power." A meeting of the manufacturing interests at Harrisburg to devise measures to pass a tariff bill then pending set the dangerous example of—

separate representation and association of great geographical interests to promote their prosperity at the expense of other interests … which of all measures that can be conceived is calculated to give the greatest opportunity to art and corruption and to make two of one nation … It must lead to defeat or oppression or resistance, or the correction of what perhaps is a great defect in our system; that the separate geographical interests are not sufficiently guarded.[1]

Calhoun even then was probably contemplating some such remedy as he framed for presentation to the state legislature at the end of the next year. He soon came to feel confident that the tariff was one of the greatest instruments of southern impoverishment, and that if persisted in it must reduce the South to poverty or compel an entire change of industry.[2] By the middle of 1828 he was convinced that the South was so

  1. Calhoun Correspondence, American Historical Association Report, 1899, Vol II: Calhoun to J. E. Calhoun, August 26, 1827.
  2. Calhoun Correspondence: Calhoun to J. E. Calhoun, May 4, 1828.