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Title: The Color Line: A Brief in Behalf of the Unborn

Author: William Benjamin Smith

Release date: January 28, 2011 [eBook #35099]

Language: English

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A Brief




Publisher's Logo

Consider the End



Copyright, 1905, by
Published February, 1905, N


John Henry Neville


Admiration and Gratitude


Chapter One   3
Chapter Two   29
Chapter Three   75
Chapter Four   111
Chapter Five   158
Chapter Six   193


The following pages attempt a discussion of the most important question that is likely to engage the attention of the American People for many years and even generations to come. Compared with the vital matter of pure Blood, all other matters, as of tariff, of currency, of subsidies, of civil service, of labour and capital, of education, of forestry, of science and art, and even of religion, sink into insignificance. For, to judge by the past, there is scarcely any conceivable educational or scientific or governmental or social or religious polity under which the pure strain of Caucasian blood might not live and thrive and achieve great things for History and Humanity; on the other hand, there is no reason to believe that any kind or degree of institutional excellence could permanently stay the race decadence that would follow surely in the wake of any considerable contamination of that blood by the blood of Africa.

It is this supreme and all-overshadowing importance of the interests at stake that must justify the earnestness and the minuteness with which the matter has been treated. The writer does not deny that he feels profoundly and intensely on the subject; otherwise, he would certainly never thus have turned aside from studies far more congenial and fascinating. But he has not allowed his feelings or any sentimental considerations whatever to warp his judgment. It has been his effort to make the whole discussion purely scientific, an ethnological inquiry, undisturbed by any partisan or political influence. He has had to guard himself especially against the emotion of sympathy, of pity for the unfortunate race, "the man of yesterday," which the unfeeling process of Nature demands in sacrifice on the altar of the evolution of Humanity.

It may be well to indicate at the outset the general movement of thought through this volume:

Chapter One in its title strikes the keynote. In the following pages the main issue is stated, the position of the South is defined, and her lines of defence are indicated. But there is no attempt to justify the fundamental assumption in the Southern argument.

In Chapter Two this shortcoming is made good. The assumed inferiority of both the Negro and the Negroid is argued at length, and proved by a great variety of considerations.

In Chapter Three the notion that this inferiority, now demonstrated, is after all merely cultural and removable by Education or other extra-organic means, is considered minutely and refuted in every detail and under all disguises.

In Chapter Four the powerful and authoritative plea of Dr. Boas, for the "primitives," is subjected to a searching analysis, with the decisive result that, in spite of himself, this eminent anthropologist, while denying everything as a whole, affirms everything in detail that is maintained in the preceding chapters. Inasmuch as the Address of this savant may be regarded as the ne plus ultra of pro-African pleading, both in earnestness and in learning, it has seemed that no treatment of the subject would be complete that did not refute it thoroughly—"so fight I as one not beating the air." To do this was not possible without quoting extensively, which is the less to be regretted as the Address has been too little read.

In Chapter Five the obvious and instant question is met. What then is to become of the Black Man? The answer is rendered in general terms and is supported by the remarkable testimony of the distinguished statistician, Professor Willcox. But only general sociologic moments are regarded, and the statistical argument in detail is held in reserve.

In Chapter Six this omission is fully supplied. The Growth rate, the Birth rate, the Death rate, the Crime rate, and the Anthropometry of the Negro are discussed minutely from every point of view, and the positions of the preceding chapters are bulwarked and buttressed unassailably.

It has been the one aim of the writer, who is perfectly convinced in his own mind, to convince the reader. To this end no pains have been spared and no drudgery avoided. Since it appeared necessary to regard the matter from various nearly related points of view, under only slightly divergent angles, it has happened that the same argumentative materials have come to hand more than once in almost equivalent forms. But in this there is no disadvantage; factors of such sovereign potence do not suffer from repetition. The whole discussion is biological in its bearing and turns about a few pivotal points; and these deserve to be stressed by every device of emphasis. "For twice indeed, yea thrice, they say, it is good to repeat and review the good."

There remain yet certain important political and economical and even juridical aspects of the subject, concerning which the writer has not neglected to gather relevant material of evidence; but any adequate discussion would carry the reader too far afield and would mar the unity of the work as it now stands. Accordingly these aspects are left unregarded.

The writer fancies one may forecast the only reply likely to be brought forward under even a thin guise of plausibility. It will be said, as it is said, that the much-dreaded contamination of blood is the merest bugaboo. But nay! it is a tremendous and instant peril, against which eternal vigilance is the only safeguard, in whose presence it is vain and fatuous to cry "peace, peace" when there is no peace, a peril whose menace is sharpened by well-meant efforts at humanity and generosity, by seemingly just demands for social equality masquerading as "equal opportunity." The one adequate definition of this "equal opportunity" has been bravely given by that most able and eloquent Negroid, Prof. William H. Councill: "Will the White man permit the Negro to have an equal part in the industrial, political, social and civil advantages of the United States? This, as I understand it, is the problem." All this is quite beyond question to the mind that cherishes no illusions and insistently beholds things as they are. Neither is it less sure that even the Southern conscience needs quickening at this vital point. The writer has been appalled at the cool indifference with which amalgamation is contemplated as necessary and inevitable by certain highly intelligent philanthropists in the Southland. The matter is delicate and difficult to argue, and in the body of the book it has perhaps been stressed too lightly; but the danger signals are clearly discernible, even as they were to Prof. E. D. Cope, and it is madness not to heed them. If the race barrier be removed, and the individual standard of personal excellence be established, the twilight of this century will gather upon a nation hopelessly sinking in the mire of Mongrelism.

It can hardly be hoped that any reader will be satisfied with the glimpse here disclosed of the future. Certainly not the Negro, nor his apologists; nor even such as sympathize most fully with the writer. The solemn secular processes, to which the solution of the problem is relegated, are so very leisurely in their working, closing down upon their final result with the deliberation of a glacier, or like some slowly convergent infinite series. But Nature is once for all thus leaden-footed, and it is extremely difficult to quicken her pace.

We have bestowed merely a glance upon the scheme of Deportation, which is alas! not now a question of practical statesmanship, though it may indeed become one sooner than we think.

However, the outlook is not hopeless to him who has a sense of the world to come, who lives in his race, who feels the solidarity of its present with its future as well as with its past. "Of men that are just, the true saviour is Time." Besides, it seems not at all strange that a disease, chronic through centuries, should require centuries for its cure, that the multiplied echoes of the curse of African slavery should go sounding on, even to the years of many generations.

W. B. S.

Tulane University,
    25th October, 1904.





Let not man join together

What God hath put asunder.

In the controversy precipitated by the luncheon at the White House, and embittered by more recent procedures, the attitude of the South presents an element of the pathetic. The great world is apparently hopelessly against her. Three-fourths of the virtue, culture, and intelligence of the United States seems to view her with pitying scorn; the old mother, England, has no word of sympathy, but applauds the conduct that her daughter reprehends; the continent of Europe looks on with amused perplexity, as unable even to comprehend her position, so childish and absurd. Worst of all, she herself appears to have no far-reaching voice. However ably or earnestly her daily journals may plead her cause, their circle of readers rarely extends far beyond her own borders: she seems to be talking to herself or raving in a dream.

Under such conditions, why not appeal to her generous foes, to the Northern Press, to lend the mighty resonance of their own voice to the proclamation of the Southern plea? "Their tone has gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world." But the demands on their space are overwhelming; they hesitate before an article of more than fifteen pages, and they would not needlessly wound the sensibilities of their readers. No! The Southern plea, if it is to be made effective, must be presented in a book.

The present writer professes neither authority nor special fitness to speak for the South. No one but himself knows that he is framing or intends to frame this defense; but the situation appeals to him powerfully, and it is so transparent and so easily understood of any one here in the midst that he cannot believe he commits any sensible error in his statement of the case.

To begin, then, it is essential to any proper conduct of the discussion that the point at issue be clearly defined, and that all false issues be excluded rigorously and in terms. Unless we widely err, much current argumentation, especially at the North, is perverted by the fatal fallacy of mistaken aim. On the other hand, we shall not be at any pains to defend or excuse intemperance in the language of Southern writers or speakers; on this head we have no dispute with any one but are willing to admit, whether true or false, whatever may be charged.

What, then, is the real point at issue, and what does the South stand for in this contention—stand alone, friendless, despised, with the head and heart, the brain and brawn, the wealth and culture of the civilized world arrayed almost solidly against her? The answer is simple: She stands for blood, for the "continuous germ-plasma" of the Caucasian Race.

The South cares nothing, in themselves, for the personal friendships or appreciations of high-placed dignitaries and men of light and leading. She must concede to such and to all Northerners' and to all Europeans the abstract right to choose their associates and table company as they please. What she does maintain is, that in the South the colour line must be drawn firmly, unflinchingly—without deviation or interruption of any kind whatever.

It may be too much to affirm that in all extra-social matters—in politics, in business, in literature, in science, in art, everywhere but in society—even the best sentiment or practice of the South is eager to give the Negro strict justice, or ample scope, or free opportunity. Southerners are merely human; and there is, perhaps, no great historical example of an inferior race or class treated with all proper consideration by the superior. Certainly our Northern friends will hardly maintain that recent disclosures clearly show that their ruling corporate powers are humane, or generous, or even barely just towards the poor and humble, in their administration of the important industrial trusts which God has so wisely placed in their hands. They are giants, and it is the nature of giants to press hard. At this point, then, the South is or should be open to conviction. It is the part of statesmanship, as well as of humanity, continuously to adjust the relations of classes—much more so of races—so that the largest interests involved may be sacredly conserved and at the least possible sacrifice of any smaller interest that may conflict. More can hardly be expected in a world whose law is strife. Tried by this standard, it is very doubtful whether the South falls even one notch below the average set everywhere by the example of the ruling class. If she does, then let her bear the blame, with neither excuse nor extenuation for her shortcomings. But in the matter of social separation we can and we will make no concessions whatever. Neither dare we tolerate any violations of our fundamental principle among ourselves; nor dare we sit calmly by and behold its violation by others, when that violation imperils our own supreme interests and renders more difficult the maintenance of our own position. Here, then, is laid bare the nerve of the whole matter: Is the South justified in this absolute denial of social equality to the Negro, no matter what his virtues or abilities or accomplishments?

We affirm, then, that the South is entirely right in thus keeping open at all times, at all hazards, and at all sacrifices an impassable social chasm between Black and White. This she must do in behalf of her blood, her essence, of the stock of her Caucasian Race. To the writer the correctness of this thesis seems as clear as the sun—so evident as almost to forestall argument; nor can he quite comprehend the frame of mind that can seriously dispute it. But let us look at it closely. Is there any doubt whatever as to the alternative? If we sit with Negroes at our tables, if we entertain them as our guests and social equals, if we disregard the colour line in all other relations, is it possible to maintain it fixedly in the sexual relation, in the marriage of our sons and daughters, in the propagation of our species? Unquestionably, No! It is certain as the rising of tomorrow's sun, that, once the middle wall of social partition broken down, the mingling of the tides of life would begin instantly and proceed steadily. Of course, it would be gradual, but none the less sure, none the less irresistible. It would make itself felt at first most strongly in the lower strata of the white population; but it would soon invade the middle and menace insidiously the very uppermost. Many bright Mulattoes would ambitiously woo, and not a few would win, well-bred women disappointed in love or goaded by impulse or weary of the stern struggle for existence. As a race, the Southern Caucasian would be irreversibly doomed. For no possible check could be given to this process once established. Remove the barrier between two streams flowing side by side—immediately they begin to mingle their molecules; in vain you attempt to replace it. Not even ten legions of Clerk Maxwell's demons could ever sift them out and restore the streams to their original purity. The moment the bar of absolute separation is thrown down in the South, that moment the bloom of her spirit is blighted forever, the promise of her destiny is annulled, the proud fabric of her future slips into dust and ashes. No other conceivable disaster that might befall the South could, for an instant, compare with such miscegenation within her borders. Flood and fire, fever and famine and the sword—even ignorance, indolence, and carpet-baggery—she may endure and conquer while her blood remains pure; but once taint the well-spring of her life, and all is lost—even honour itself. It is this immediate jewel of her soul that the South watches with such a dragon eye, that she guards with more than vestal vigilance, with a circle of perpetual fire. The blood thereof is the life thereof; he who would defile it would stab her in her heart of heart, and she springs to repulse him with the fiercest instinct of self-preservation. It may not be that she is distinctly conscious of the immeasurable interests at stake or of the real grounds of her roused antagonism; but the instinct itself is none the less just and true and the natural bulwark of her life.

To set forth great things by small, we may take the instinct of the family, with its imperious and uncompromising demand for absolute female chastity. It is not here, in any controlling measure, a question of individual morality. We make no such absolute demand upon men. We regret, we condemn, we may infinitely deplore sexual irregularity in son, or brother, or husband, or father, or friend, but we do not ostracize;—we may forgive, we may honour, we may even glorify the offender in spite of his offense. But for the female dissolute there is no forgiveness, however we may extra-socially pity or even admire. A double standard—an abomination! But while none may approve, yet every one admits and applies it—for reasons deeper than our conscious logic, and irresistible. For the offense of the man is individual and limited, while that of the woman is general, and strikes mortally at the existence of the family itself.

Now the idea of the race is far more sacred than that of the family. It is, in fact, the most sacred thing on earth; and he who offends against it is an apostate from his kind and mounts the apex of sacrilege.

At this point we hear some one exclaim, "Not so fast! To sit at table, to mingle freely in society with certain persons, does not imply you would marry them." Certainly not, in every case. We may recognize socially those whom we personally abhor. This matters not, however; for wherever social commingling is admitted, there the possibility of intermarriage must be also admitted. It becomes a mere question of personal preference, of like and dislike. Now, there is no accounting for tastes. It is ridiculous to suppose that no Negroes would prove attractive to any whites. The possible would become actual—as certainly as you will throw double-double sixes, if only you keep on throwing. To be sure, where the number of Negroes is almost vanishingly small, as in the North and in Europe, there the chances of such mésalliances are proportionally divided; some may even count them negligible. But in the South, where in many districts the Black outnumbers the White, they would be multiplied immensely, and crosses would follow with increasing frequency.

It is only the sense of blood superiority, the pride of race, that has hitherto protected the white labourer. Break this down or abate it, and he sinks swiftly to the level of the mongrel. Laugh as you will at the haughtiness of the ignorant Southerner, at his scorn of the Negro, perhaps his superior, it is this very race self-respect that is the rock of his salvation. As Bernhard Moses points out, it was because the Anglo-Saxon so cherished this feeling that he refused to amalgamate with the Indians—a proud and in some ways superior race—but drove them relentlessly, and often, it may be, unrighteously before him into the sea. It was just because the Spaniard, though otherwise proud enough, did not cherish this feeling, that he did amalgamate with the victims of his greed and descend into hopeless depths of hybridization. So far, then, from doing aught to weaken this sentiment, we should do our utmost to strengthen it; we should studiously avoid offending it. But social equality must deadly wound it and hence drag miscegenation and all South America in its train.

But some may deny that the mongrelization of the Southern people would offend the race notion—would corrupt or degrade the Southern stock of humanity. If so, then such a one has yet to learn the largest-writ lessons of history and the most impressive doctrines of biological science. That the Negro is markedly inferior to the Caucasian is proved both craniologically and by six thousand years of planet-wide experimentation; and that the commingling of inferior with superior must lower the higher is just as certain as that the half-sum of two and six is only four. [1]

If accepted science teaches anything at all, it teaches that the heights of being in civilized man have been reached along one path and one only—the path of Selection, of the preservation of favoured individuals and of favoured races. The deadly enemy of the whole process of uplifting, of the Drang nach oben, of the course of history itself, is pammixia. Only give it play, and it would inevitably level all life into one undistinguished heap. Now, amalgamation of Black and White is only a special case of pammixia. The hope of the human lies in the superhuman; and the possibility of the superhuman is given in selection, in natural and rational selection, among the children that are to be, of the parents of the men to come. The notion of social racial equality is thus seen to be abhorrent alike to instinct and to reason; for it flies in the face of the process of the suns, it runs counter to the methods of the mind of God.

It is idle to talk of education and civilization and the like as corrective or compensative agencies. [2] All are weak and beggarly as over against the almightiness of heredity, the omniprepotence of the transmitted germ-plasma. Let this be amerced of its ancient rights, let it be shorn in some measure of its exceeding weight of ancestral glory, let it be soiled in its millennial purity and integrity, and nothing shall ever restore it; neither wealth, nor culture, nor science, nor art, nor morality, nor religion—not even Christianity itself. Here and there these may redeem some happy spontaneous variation, some lucky freak of nature; but nothing more—they can never redeem the race. If this be not true, then history and biology are alike false; then Darwin and Spencer, Hæckel and Weismann, Mendel and Pearson, have lived and laboured in vain.

Equally futile is the reply, so often made by our opponents, that miscegenation has already progressed far in the Southland, as witness millions of Mulattoes. Certainly; but do not such objectors know in their hearts that their reply is no answer, but is utterly irrelevant? We admit and deplore the fact that unchastity has poured a broad stream of white blood into black veins; but we deny, and perhaps no one will affirm, that it has poured even the slenderest appreciable rill of Negro blood into the veins of the Whites. We have no excuse whatever to make for these masculine incontinences; we abhor them as disgraceful and almost bestial. But, however degrading and even unnatural, they in nowise, not even in the slightest conceivable degree, defile the Southern Caucasian blood. That blood to-day is absolutely pure; and it is the inflexible resolution of the South to preserve that purity, no matter how dear the cost. We repeat, then, it is not a question of individual morality, nor even of self-respect. He who commerces with a negress debases himself and dishonours his body, the temple of the Spirit; but he does not impair, in anywise, the dignity or integrity of his race; he may sin against himself and others, and even against his God, but not against the germ-plasma of his kind.

Does some one reply that some Negroes are better than some Whites, physically, mentally, morally? We do not deny it; but this fact, again, is without pertinence. It may very well be that some dogs are superior to some men. It is absurd to suppose that only the elect of the Blacks would unite with only the non-elect of the Whites. Once started, the pammixia would spread through all classes of society and contaminate possibly or actually all. Even a little leaven may leaven the whole lump.

Far more than this, however, even if only very superior Negroes formed unions with non-superior Whites, the case would not be altered; for it is a grievous error to suppose that the child is born of its proximate parents only; it is born of all its ancestry; it is the child of its race. The eternal past lays hand upon it and upon all its descendants. However weak the White, behind him stands Europe; however strong the Black, behind him lies Africa.

Preposterous, indeed, is this doctrine that personal excellence is the true standard, and that only such Negroes as attain a certain grade of merit should or would be admitted to social equality. A favourite evasion! The Independent, The Nation, The Outlook, the whole North—all point admiringly to Mr. Washington, and exclaim: "But only see what a noble man he is—so much better than his would-be superiors!" So, too, a distinguished clergyman, when asked whether he would let his daughter marry a Negro, replied: "We wish our daughters to marry Christian gentlemen." Let, then, the major premise be, "All Christian gentlemen are to be admitted to social equality;" and add, if you will, any desired degree of refinement or education or intellectual prowess as a condition. Does not every one see that any such test would be wholly impracticable and nugatory? If Mr. Washington be the social equal of Roosevelt and Eliot and Hadley, how many others will be the social equals of the next circle, and the next, and the next, in the long descent from the White House and Harvard to the miner and the rag-picker? And shall we trust the hot, unreasoning blood of youth to lay virtues and qualities so evenly in the balance and decide just when some "olive-coloured suitor" is enough a "Christian gentleman" to claim the hand of some simple-hearted milk-maid or some school-ma'am "past her bloom"? The notion is too ridiculous for refutation. If the best Negro in the land is the social equal of the best Caucasian, then it will be hard to prove that the lowest White is higher than the lowest Black; the principle of division is lost, and complete social equality is established. We seem to have read somewhere that, when the two ends of one straight segment coincide with the two ends of another, the segments coincide throughout their whole extent.

But even suppose that only the lower strata of Whites mingle with the upper strata of Negroes, the result would be more slowly, but not the less surely, fatal. The interpenetration in our democratic society is too thorough. Here and there the Four Hundred may isolate themselves, but only for a time and imperfectly. Who knows when the scion of a millionaire may turn into a motorman, or the son of a peasant hew his way to the Capitol? Let the mongrel poison assail the humbler walks of life, and it will spread like a bubonic plague through the higher. The standing of the South would be lost irretrievably. Though her blood might still flow pure in myriad veins, yet who could prove it? The world would turn away from her, and point back the finger of suspicion, and whisper "Unclean!"

Just here we must insist that the South, in this tremendous battle for the race, is fighting not for herself only, but for her sister North as well. It is a great mistake to imagine that one can be smutched and the other remain immaculate. Up from the Gulf regions the foul contagion would let fly its germs beyond the lakes and mountains. The floods of life mingle their waters over all our land. Generations might pass before the darkening tinge could be seen distinctly above the Ohio, but it would be only a question of time. The South alone would suffer total eclipse, but the dread penumbra would deepen insensibly over all the continent.

Well, then, the determination and attitude of the South are just and holy and good, and we may now advance to another question. Granted the completest social separation in the South, where the danger is instant and fearful, is it also right or demanded in the North, where the danger is distant or wholly unreal? Why not social separation and the race standard in the South, but social equality and the standard of personal merit in the North? We apprehend that such will be the position of many fair-minded men at the North, and perhaps we may hope for no greater concession. Such a compromise, if carried out to the letter and its purpose and spirit everywhere boldly proclaimed and distinctly understood, might indeed be accepted as a modus vivendi. If the Northern Press and Pulpit should speak on this wise: "You Southerners mistake us entirely. We recoil with your own horror from the idea of a hybridized Dixie; God forbid that you should 'herd with narrow foreheads, vacant of our glorious gains'! We too eschew the notion of race equality. We do not practise, we do not preach it. We applaud your inflexible resolution to keep the Caucasian blood uncorrupt and consecrated to the highest ideals of humanity. Only, we would generously remember high achievements and reward exceptional merit with recognition, but always without will or desire to disturb your social order or to debase the coin of your White civilization. We hold out no false hopes, we encourage no vain ambitions, we flatter no absurd conceits, we sow no seeds of discontent or discord." If such notes rang out from the moulders and wielders of the Northern mind, the South would rejoice with joy unspeakable. She might then pass by unnoticed what now excites her protest. But alas! such notes are rarely, if ever, heard. Instead, it is constantly reiterated that the South is the victim of "unreasoning prejudice," that she is old-fogy, antiquated, ignorant, and without liberalizing experience of the larger world. Her plea for race integrity is thrust aside as not worth hearing or is answered at best with fine scorn and lofty contempt. From such Northern utterances it seems impossible to draw any conclusion but that very many would be quite willing to see perfect equality of the races established in the South, even with its inevitable corollary of mongrelization. [3] It is this painful consciousness, that the central dogma of her civilization finds apparently so little favour beyond the Potomac, that so alarms the South and makes her so supersensitive as to Northern practice. Examples, otherwise trifling, acquire deep interest when set to illustrate some vital principle.

To the North, so superior in all the tokens of development, the world looks for the pattern. Her conduct counts as the model. The Negroes themselves cannot be expected to distinguish between the Northerner North and the Northerner South, nor to reflect that the wise man howls with the wolves, and very naturally feel themselves the victims of gross injustice.

And herein lies the profound and disastrous significance of the Washington incident and its fellows. They are open proclamations from the housetops of society that the South is radically wrong, that no racial distinctions are valid in social life, that only personal qualities are to be regarded. The necessary inference is the perfect social equality of the races, as races, the abolition of the colour line in society, in the family, in the home. The unescapable result would be the mongrelization of the South and her reduction below the level of Mexico and Central America. [4]

Our opponents, however, are not yet left without rejoinder. They will and do affirm that all such incidents are only trivial, that the noisy protest of the South is a mere "tempest in a teapot." In a certain sense this is true. The precedent at the White House has found and will find no acceptance in the Southland. Not one door of equality will be loosened in its closure, but the bolts will be fastened firmer, the gates will be guarded more narrowly. However, it is equally true that the South could not overlook such an incident in such a quarter. The treasure she has to keep is beyond rubies; the watchmen on her towers must neither slumber nor sleep. She is safe, but only because of, and not in default of, unresting vigilance.

We congratulate our friends in the North that they can play with fire without fear of burns; that they can wine and dine amiable and interesting Negroes as rare birds of passage, with no thought of ulterior consequences—at least, to themselves. Their wealth, their power, their culture, their grandeur, but more than all else, their excessive preponderance in numbers, preclude the thought that in many generations their blood could be perceptibly tinged with tides from Africa. With us of the South, alas! the whole situation is quite another. They may safely smile at such an incident as an empty scabbard; but to us it is a drawn dagger.

But the question still remains: Why does the South, if she be right in this matter, find the virtue and intelligence of the world arrayed against her? We answer, the overmass of adverse authority is indeed immense, but it is weightless. The testimony of the North and of Europe is hardly more relevant than would be that of the Martians. For in neither has the race question yet presented itself as a serious practical matter; for them the Black Peril has no existence. Hence their treatment of the subject is merely academic and sentimental. They have generous ethical ideas, respectable but well-worn and overworked maxims, high humanitarian principles; and these they ride horseback. For them the Negro is a black swan, a curious and interesting specimen in natural history; and they have no hesitance in extending their sympathy, their hospitality, and their coöperation. They remember that God "hath made of one (blood) all nations of men for to dwell on the face of the earth," but forget that the author of this noble sentiment was not an ethnologist; they pity "the nation's ward" as the victim of centuries of oppression, and to the eyes of their faith the mount of his transfiguration gleams close at hand. But the practical problem never confronts them in its unrelieved difficulties and dangers. The possibility of blood contamination is not suggested to them, or at least it never comes home to them; and they yield freely to their philanthropic impulses, not thinking whither these would lead them, not seeing the end from the beginning. Southern hearts are not less benevolent than Northern, but Southern eyes are of necessity in this matter wide open, while most others are shut.

But once let Northern and European eyes catch a clear glimpse of the actual peril of the situation; once let the problem step forth before them in a definite concrete form and call for immediate solution; once let the sharp question pierce the national heart, "Shall I or shall I not blend my Caucasian, world-ruling, world-conquering blood with the servile strain of Africa?" and can there be any doubt of the answer? The race instinct is now slumbering in the North and Europe, and not strangely, for there is nothing to keep it awake; but it is not extinct, it exists and is ready to spring up on occasion into fierce and resistless activity. Of this fact our treatment of the Chinese has already furnished a striking illustration. We tolerated and even petted these industrious Orientals—certainly greatly the Negro's superior—so long as they were few in number and in no way embarrassing. But at the first suggestion that they might come in droves and derange our labour system or alter the type of our civilization, there burst forth all over the North a vehement protest, "in might as a flame of fire," that swept everything before it and hurled back the Chinaman into the ocean and barred our ports unyieldingly against him. The case against Chinese immigration was not one-hundredth so strong as against the social equality of the Negro; in fact, there was much to be said against our restrictive legislation, and much was said both ably and eloquently. But the strongest arguments could not make themselves heard; the race instinct, that instinct preservative of all instincts, was infinitely stronger, and easily triumphed. Let us not forget, either, the recent incidents at Northwestern University and elsewhere, which show clearly that the "prejudice," if you please so to call it, against the Negro is hardly less strong, when aroused, even now in Chicago than in New Orleans.

But some one may say, if all this be true, if the race instinct of the Anglo-Saxon is really so mighty and imperious, then there is no danger that it will not assert itself, if need be; and why all this pother about it? We answer, there is really no danger while the instinct is aroused, and therefore, but only therefore, the South is safe. What we deprecate is the systematic warfare that is waged in some quarters against this instinct as a mere unenlightened "prejudice" whereof we should be ashamed—the attempt to battle it down or else to drug it to sleep in the name of morality or religion or higher humanity. When our Northern brothers, by precept and by example, throw the whole weight of their immense authority in favour of a practice that would be ruinous to the South, are they walking according to love?

We do not deny that there may be cases that move our sympathy; that appeal strongly to our sense of fair play, of right between man and man. In and of itself, it may sound strange and unjust and even foolish to deny to Booker Washington a seat at the table of a white man, even should he be distinctly Mr. Washington's inferior. But the matter must not be decided in and of itself—no man either lives for himself or dies for himself. It must be judged in its larger bearings, by its universal interests, where it lays hold upon the ages, under the aspect of eternity. We refuse to let the case rest in the low and narrow category of Duty to the Individual; we range it where it belongs, in the higher and broader category of Obligation to the Race.

And this conducts us to a final remark. Even at the risk of a sus Minervam we venture to correct a great journal, The Outlook, in one of its statements. It assures its readers that the recent criticism does not represent the real South of intelligence, generosity, and true breeding, but is a survival in a few persons, who have not had opportunities of large contact with the world—of an antiquated and incomprehensible prejudice. Such words are doubtless well-meant; but they are ill-meaning, and if we understand them at all, they invert the facts of the case. We have some acquaintance with some of the best elements of the Southern society, some of the best representatives in nearly all the walks of Southern life. We believe the virtue and intelligence of "the real South" are eminently conservative, earnestly deprecate intemperance in language, and are sworn enemies to sectional animosity. Perhaps, in their zeal to cultivate the friendliest relations with their Northern brethren, they may guard their expressions too carefully and repress their true feelings. But he who supposes that the South will ever waver a hair's breadth from her position of uncompromising hostility to any and every form of social equality between the races, deceives himself only less than that other who mistakes her race instinct, the palladium of her future, for an ignorant prejudice and who fails to perceive that her resolution to maintain White racial supremacy within her borders is deepest-rooted and most immutable precisely where her civic virtue, her intelligence, and her refinement are at their highest and best.




All flesh is not the same flesh;

* * * *

Star differeth from star in glory.

I. Cor. xv. 39, 41

In the foregoing discussion, it did not seem well to interrupt the current of thought by any proof of the assumed inferiority of the Negro, or of the degeneracy induced by the intermixture of types too widely diverse.

Yet these assumptions are, indeed, the two hinges of the whole controversy. Once conceded the racial inferiority of the Black and the half-way nature of the half-breed, and the general contention of the South is proved, her general attitude justified. It is not strange, then, that the doughtiest champions of equality, in their very latest deliverances, find no choice left them but to deny that the Negro is an inferior or a backward race.

Such, by way of high example, are two world-renowned metropolitan journals, whose general excellence and powerful influence for good in our civic life cannot be disputed, but whose intense straining for Justice and Equity in the present has utterly blinded them no less to obvious facts and principles of science than to the highest and holiest rights of humanity in the future. The one, in speaking of racial "inferiors," incloses the word in contemptuous guillemets and declares that when Mr. Darwin says: "Some of them—for instance, the negro and the European—are so distinct that, if specimens had been brought to a naturalist without any further information, they would undoubtedly have been considered by him as good and true species," he "raises no question of superior or inferior;" and it adds, "Nature knows no forward or backward races, fauna or flora"—an oracle whose real meaning can only be guessed at.

The other is more specific. It maintains: "Physically, the negro is equal to the Caucasian. He is as tall and as strong. He has all the physical basis and all the brain capacity necessary for the development of intellectual power.... No evidence has yet been adduced which proves that the Negro is physically, intellectually, essentially, necessarily an inferior race." ... "The assumption that the Caucasian is an essentially superior race ... is provincial, unintelligent and unchristian."

When we first meet with such denials, we are almost dumbfounded; we rub our eyes and exclaim with Truthful James:

Do I sleep? Do I dream?

Do I wonder and doubt?

Are things what they seem?

Or is visions about?

Is our civilization a failure?

Or is the Caucasian played out?

But on recovery from the shock, the shining pageant of all the ages begins to file interminably before the imagination. The triumphs of the Indo-European and Semitic races, the stories of Babylon and Nineveh, of Thebes and Memphis, of Rome and Athens and Jerusalem, of Delhi and of Bagdad, of the Pyramids and of the Parthenon—the radiant names of Hammurabi and Zarathustra and Moses and the Buddha and Mohammed, of Homer and Plato and Phidias and Socrates and Pindar and Pythagoras, and the mightiest Julius, and the imperial philosophers, and their peers without number, the endless creations of art and science and religion and law and literature and every other form of activity, the full-voiced choir of all the Muses, the majestic morality, the hundred-handed philosophy, the manifold wisdom of civilization—all of this infinite cloud of witnesses gather swarming upon us from the whole firmanent of the past and proclaim with pentecostal tongue the glory and supremacy of Caucasian man. It seems impossible to represent in human speech, or by any symbols intelligible to the human mind, the variety and immensity of this consentient testimony of all historic time and place. Not to be overwhelmed and overawed, much more convinced, by such a prodigious spectacle of evidence, is to gaze at midnoon into the heavens and cry out, "Where is the sun?" For over against all these transcendent achievements, what has the West African to set? What art? What science? What religion? What morality? What philosophy? What history? What even one single aspect of civilization or culture or higher humanity? It would seem to be an insult to the reader's intelligence, if we should prolong the comparison.

Now can all this be accidental? Has it just happened that, in all quarters of the world and under all climatic and topographic conditions, East and West, North and South, beneath the tropics and within the frozen circles, by the sea and amid the mountains, in snow, in sand, in forest—that everywhere and everywhen the Caucasian has manifested the same all-conquering, overmastering qualities—not always good or kind or just, but always strong, always striving, always victorious? And that never, and nowhere, and under no circumstances, has the Black man displayed any such capacities as could bring him for a moment into consideration as the White man's equal? We answer, there can be no possibility of mistake. The achievement of the race, its total history both in time and in space, is the best possible index to its powers and potencies. Against this witness of history, even if other indications did plead, they would plead in vain. Even were the brain of the Negro as large as an elephant's, it would matter not. Says Hegel, "Nations are what their deeds are;" and with greater justice we may affirm that the race is what its life is and has been.

It is noteworthy that while the one knight-errant boldly declares that, "Nature knows no forward or backward races," the other more cautiously avoids the term "backward" and denies only inferiority for the Negro. Perhaps one might admit that he is backward and demand for him time and opportunity. However, the distinction is not really pertinent to the issue. As well say the monkey is not inferior, but only backward. It is only a difference of degree—a very great difference, to be sure, but it is idle to say, "Give the Negro time." He has already had time, as much time as the Europeans—thousands and ten thousands of years. And what opportunity has failed him? The power that uplifted Aryan and Semite did not come from without, but from within. No mortal civilized him; he civilized himself. It was the wing of his own spirit that bore him aloft. If the African has equal native might of mind, why has he not wrought out his own civilization and peopled his continent with the monuments of his genius? Or if the material was all there, ready to be ignited, needing only the incensive spark, why has it never, in hundreds of years, caught fire from the blazing torch of Europe? Why has century-long contact with other civilizations never enkindled the feeblest flame? For it is well known that intercourse with foreigners has in no degree elevated or improved the West African, but on the contrary has proved his curse and his doom. (See Ratzel, The History of Mankind, III., pp. 99-100, 102-103, 120, 134.) Moreover, it seems doubtful whether nearly forty [5] years of persistent and consecrated efforts at education, with the expenditure of hundreds of millions, have revealed yet in ten millions of Afro-Americans a single example of originative ability of notably high order. (Bright Mulattoes, like familiar instances, count little in this argument. It is well known (Mendel's Law) that offspring [6] do not exactly divide the qualities of parents, but often veer in this respect or in that far over to one side or to the other. Besides, the abilities of such men are apt to loom up unduly large in the popular imagination. We all wonder at a dancing bear, not because he dances well, but because he dances at all.)

Perhaps one of the most unerring indications of the native capacities and tendencies of a race is to be found in its ethnic religion, its mythology, its childlike, untutored attitude towards the riddles of the universe. For there can be but little or no question of outside influence or unequal opportunity. The sun, the moon, the stars, the firmament, the ocean, the plains, the mountains, the forests, the rivers, the seasons, eclipses and precessions, day and night, morning and evening, fire and frost, ice and vapour, wind and cloud, thunder and lightning, life and death, health and disease, dreams and shadows—all these multiform materials of construction have offered themselves in practically equivalent quantity and quality to the phantasy of every race and every age. The reactions have varied widely, and have boldly characterized the genius of each people. Tell me of their gods, and I will tell you of the worshippers. Tried by this standard, the case seems decided, even before it reaches the threshold of the court. For, putting aside the sublime and awful monotheism of the Hebrew, can any one for an instant set in line the august and imposing, if overgrown and superluxuriant, mythology of India, the stern and severe and tremendous religions of the Nile and the Euphrates, the sad and solemn but high-hearted and deep-thoughted musings of Scandinavia and Teuton-land, the infinitely varied and infinitely beautiful mythopœia of Hellas, or even the colorless but sharp-lined abstractions of Italy, with the degraded fetichism, the stock-and stone-service of the Niger and the Congo?

What we may call the historical argument, just presented, finds strong and decisive confirmation, even though it needs none, in the craniology, the physiognomy, and the general anatomy of the Negro. [7] Take him at his very best—does any one believe that the Olympian Zeus, an Apollo Belvedere, a Melian Venus, a Capitoline Juno, a Hermes of Praxiteles, or a Sistine Madonna could ever by any possibility have emerged from the most fertile fancy of an "Old Master" of the Congo? Perfect his type as you will, even as you perfect the type of a flower or a bird, does not the Sudanese remain at immense remove from the European? Of course, it is always possible to contend that beauty is only subjective, any way, that the hair and brow and nose and lips and jaw and ear of the West African would be just as beautiful as those of the Greek or Anglo-American, if we only thought so. But being what we are, we cannot think so now and still less the further we advance in organic development. Moreover, with equal reason we might say that the tiger-lily was as beautiful as the rose, the hippopotamus as pretty as the squirrel; nay more, we might abolish all distinctions of quality, and identify each pair of contradictories.

Does some one say that physical beauty is a poor, inferior thing at best—that beauty of soul is alone sufficient and only desirable? We deny it outright. Beauty of form and colour has its own high and inalienable and indefectible rights, its own profound significance for the history alike of nature and of man. Even if the intermingling of bloods wrought no other wrong than the degradation of bodily beauty, the coarsening of feature and blurring of coloration, it would still be an unspeakable outrage, to be deprecated and prevented by all means in our power. Moreover, we hold that every such degeneration of facial type will drag along with it inevitably a corresponding declension of spirit. Criminology is confident in its claim of some deep-seated, however obscure, relation between aberrations from the physical and from the mental norm. Though there may be many illustrious exceptions, which our defective knowledge cannot explain, yet the broad general principle may still be maintained:

For of the soule the bodie forme doth take;

For soule is forme, and doth the bodie make.

Any general declination from type in the one, while it may not cause, will yet infallibly argue a corresponding declination from type in the other.

It is futile to reply that our own ancestors and the ancestors of the Greeks and all other historical peoples were once savages—were once not even men, and hardly manlike. Very true; but why stop here? Why not boldly urge that Plato might have traced back his lineage to an amœba,—yea, to star-dust and curdling ether? True, perhaps; but what of it? We may be cousins to the worm, at the billionth remove; but we are not brothers. We grant the abstract possibility that the bee or the ant may harbour in itself higher potentialities for development than even man himself. We even think it wholesome to bear this thought in mind. Nevertheless, such may-be's lie infinitely beyond the range of the practical vision; they cannot enter into our calculations of futurity. So, too, we grant that, in the centuries of milleniums to come, it is possible that the Negro's nature may receive some surpassing uplift: he may sprout eagle pinions, and far outfly the wildest dreams of Caucasian fancy. But such possibilities are altogether too remote for our reckoning now; they are decimals in the hundredth place. We may and we must neglect them, as we neglect the likelihood of a concussion of our planet with some extinct vagrant sun. We must act in the living present, and at present there rolls between the historical development of the black and the white species an impassable river of ten thousand years. Possibly the former might catch up in the course of ages, if only the latter stood still. But will they stand still? Can they afford to wait? Is there not every reason to hope that they will forge steadily ahead and widen still more and more the interval between? Is not such the obvious teaching of history? Does not the tree of life bud and bloom and put forth new boughs at the top? For our part, we believe in the Overman, Him who is to come—not, however, from the lower, but from the higher, humanity. Such, at least, seems of necessity our working hypothesis.

It would be unfair, however, to close this part of the discussion without noticing what our adversaries have been able to produce contra.

In The Souls of Black Folk, Prof. W. E. B. Dubois, of Atlanta, Ga., tells the tale, and it could not be better told, of the contributions made by the Negro to the civilization of our Union:

"Your country? How came it yours? Before the Pilgrims landed we were here. Here we have brought our three gifts and mingled them with yours: a gift of story and song—soft, stirring melody in an ill-harmonized and unmelodious land; the gift of sweat and brawn to beat back the wilderness, conquer the soil, and lay the foundations of this vast economic empire two hundred years earlier that your weak hands could have done it; the third, a gift of the Spirit" (p. 262). The second of these "gifts" we dismiss at once; the Negro's labour was not voluntary, and was not a "gift" in any sense. [8] As well say the mule made "gift of sweat and brawn to beat back the wilderness." As to the "Spirit," Prof. Dubois means that the spectacle of African slavery aroused the "Spirit" in the people of our land, particularly in the Abolitionists—"out of the nation's heart we have called all that was best to throttle and subdue all that was worst" (p. 263). Queer "gift", indeed! By the same token, the poverty, the distress, the injustice, the iniquity, the intemperance, even the crime—all that mar our civilization have been making it "the gift of the Spirit;" for have they not aroused our sense of right and duty and devotion to the good of others? Have they not called out of the nation's heart all that was best to throttle and subdue all that was worst? The gift of song, of the plaintive Negro melody—we freely allow it. How much of the same is really the product of the Negro soul seems to be a question by no means easy to answer. But let us allow the Negroid the benefit of the doubt and accord him the fullest credit. We are not musician enough to appraise this "gift" properly, nor yet to reckon its possible significance for the future of American music. But at the very most, it seems to us that this worth and this significance cannot be very high; especially since a whole generation has come and gone without any sign of larger development, but instead, Dubois himself being witness, with many signs of corruption and degradation. Even then, according to the rating of the chief of Negroids, their contribution to our civilization has been quite inconsiderable.

(N.B.—It is not, however, the sociologist of Atlanta, but the seer of Concord, who has recognized most distinctly and celebrated with proudest pomp of mixed metaphor the clairvoyance and spiritual superiority of the tropical.

Dove beneath the vulture's beak.

In the oft quoted "Voluntaries" we read:

He has avenues to God

Hid from men of Northern brain,

Far beholding, without cloud,

What these with slowest steps attain.

Inasmuch, however, as these "avenues" of the far-sighted African are nothing but the blind alleys of Voodooism and devil worship, it may be just as well that they remain "hid" from the slow-paced European.)

In the Booklovers' Magazine for July, 1903, the same writer returns to this subject in an article on "Possibilities of the Negro—The Advance Guard of the Race." The conspicuous position and, the full illustrations given this paper show clearly at what a positive advantage the Black man stands in the world of literature—simply because he is black. We happen to know that the article has made some impression. Ten names are presented of Negroids that have done respectable work in various fields of intellectual labour. If Mr. Washington is easily the Herakles in this latter-day crew of Argo, Dr. Dubois, who has mustered them, is himself certainly Jason, the eleventh. But of these eleven we may at once dismiss eight, for their abundant white blood is apparent in their pictures and is not denied. Only the other three are claimed as "black"; pure black is not said, perhaps is not meant. These seem to be the electrician, the mathematician, the poet. For none of these can be claimed any very high order of merit; the light by which they shine conspicuous among their fellows would not illustrate them very especially among the Whites. That such abilities should occasionally show themselves, even in a quite inferior race, ought surely to be expected and to arouse the wonder of no one. The really significant thing is that eight out of eleven of these champions are confessedly of mixed blood; only 27 per cent. are "black." But these "Blacks" form 80 per cent. of the total Negroid population. Hence, in proportion to numbers, it appears that the Mulattoes are represented nearly eleven times as often as the "Blacks." In the face of such a fact, [9] it seems vain to deny that the mixed blood is notably more intelligent than the pure black; the necessary inference is that the white blood with which it was mixed is far more intelligent still.

The reader may naturally ask, Why devote space to such trivial arguments as those quoted, since they tell plainly, where they tell at all, against and not for the cause they would support? We answer, that our treatment must be thorough, if it be worth anything; that we desire to represent our opponents at their very best, and as far as possible in their own words; and that the weakness of their position is most clearly seen in their own efforts at defence.

The details of the anatomical argument, which Darwin said would undoubtedly lead the naturalist to classify Negro and European as distinct species, are matters of readily accessible knowledge. They have been presented frequently and with telling force. That in particular the cranial, the facial, and the appendicular skeletons of the dolichocephalic West African (the purest, the lowest, and the prevalent type on the plantation) deviate sensibly from the highest human towards the quadrumanal stamp, has been the common observation of naturalists from Blumenbach to Ratzel; nor can this have escaped the notice of intelligent and unbiased laymen.

Nevertheless, it may be well to record the authoritative statement made by A. H. Keane, professor of Hindustani, University College, London, in the article "Negro," in the Encyclopædia Britannica, Vol. XVII. [10]

"But wherever found in a comparatively pure state, as on the coast of Guinea (here apparently is to be met the most pronounced Negro type proper yet discovered), in the Gaboon, along the lower Zambesi, and in the Benua and Shari basins, the African aborigines present almost a greater uniformity of physical and moral type than any of the other great divisions of mankind. By the nearly unanimous consent of anthropologists this type occupies at the same time the lowest position in the evolutionary scale, thus affording the best material for the comparative study of the highest anthropoids and the human species. The chief points in which the Negro either approaches the Quadrumana or differs most from his congeners are:

  (1) The abnormal length of the arm, which in the erect position sometimes reaches the knee-pan, and which on an average exceeds that of the Caucasian by about 2 inches.

  (2) Prognathism, or projection of the jaws (index number of facial angle about 70, as compared with the Caucasian 82).

  (3) Weight of brain, as indicating cranial capacity, 35 ounces (highest gorilla 20, average European 45).

  (4) Full black eye, with black iris and yellowish sclerotic coat, a very marked feature.

  (5) Short flat snub nose, deeply depressed at the base or frontal suture, broad at extremity, with dilated nostrils and concave ridge.

  (6) Thick protruding lips, plainly showing the inner red surface.

  (7) Very large zygomatic arches—high and prominent cheek bones.

  (8) Exceedingly thick cranium, enabling the Negro to butt with the head and resist blows which would inevitably break any ordinary European's skull.

  (9) Correspondingly weak lower limbs, terminating in a broad flat foot with low instep, divergent and somewhat prehensile great toe, and heel projecting backwards ("lark heel").

(10) Complexion deep brown or blackish, and in some cases even distinctly black, due not to any special pigment, as is often supposed, but merely to the greater abundance of the coloring matter in the Malphigian mucous membrane between the inner or true skin and the epidermis or scarf skin.

(11) Short, black hair, eccentrically elliptical or almost flat in section, and distinctly woolly, not merely frizzly, as Prichard supposed on insufficient evidence.

(12) Thick epidermis, cool, soft, and velvety to the touch, mostly hairless, and emitting a peculiar rancid odor, compared by Pruner Bey to that of the buck goat. [11]

(13) Frame of medium height, thrown somewhat out of the perpendicular by the shape of the pelvis, the spine, the backward projection of the head, and the whole anatomical structure.

(14) The cranial sutures, which close much earlier in the Negro than in the other races. To this premature ossification of the skull, preventing all further development of the brain, many pathologists have attributed the inherent mental inferiority of the blacks, an inferiority which is even more marked than their physical differences. Nearly all observers admit that the Negro child is on the whole quite as intelligent as those of other human varieties, but that on arriving at puberty all further progress seems to be arrested. No one has more carefully studied this point than Filippo Manetta, who, during a long residence on the plantations of the Southern States of America noted that 'the Negro children were sharp, intelligent, and full of vivacity, but on approaching the adult period a gradual change set in. The intellect seemed to become clouded, animation giving place to a sort of lethargy, briskness yielding to indolence. We necessarily suppose that the development of the Negro and White proceeds on different lines. While with the latter the volume of the brain grows with the expansion of the brain-pan, in the former the growth of the brain is on the contrary arrested by the premature closing of the cranial sutures and lateral pressure of the frontal bone.'" (La Razza Negra nel suo stato selvaggio e nella sua duplice condizione di emancipata e di schiava, Torino, 1864, p. 20).

This last point is one of such supreme importance that it seems well to strengthen it by additional testimony. Says the renowned Cesare Lombroso, in his "L'Uomo Bianco e L'Uomo di Colore" (1892), p. 28: "The development of the African baby is altogether different from ours. In its first days it does not show the dark color of the adult; the sutures of the head, which with us close up only late in life, with it ossify speedily, as in idiots and monkeys, and the anterior sooner than the posterior. Also its face becomes projecting and prognathous only after the first dentition; and only after the thirteenth year its head is seen to grow longer and its skin to grow darker. The same may be said of the mental (morale) development; for the Negro, precisely like the monkey, shows himself very intelligent up to puberty; but at that epoch, when our intellect spreads its wings for more daring flights, he stops and turns backward..." This profoundly significant arrest of development in the Negro is equally observable in school and out of it. Among many witnesses, hear one of the most unexceptionable, J. M. McGovern, in a symposium in the Arena (Vol. 21, p. 439): "My experience has shown me that, while at the start a negro child often shows ability quite equal to that of a white child at the same age, yet if the two children, one white and one coloured, each of average intelligence, are kept in the same class, in a short period the white child far outstrips the negro—at least in all those studies where diligent application and depth of thought are necessary for success." This testimony seems particularly valuable, since it is based solely on "experience" and is plainly independent of any doctrine concerning cranial sutures.

In the work already cited, Lombroso mentions several other minute yet important particulars in which the Negro anatomy diverges from the Caucasian toward the simian, but sufficient have been adduced. It may be replied that each and every one of these divergences may be found here and there among Caucasians. This is true, but the reply is no answer. All sorts of reversions to lower type are to be met with in higher species, but this by no means negatives the fact that some species are more and some are less developed. The well-formed type still exists in spite of the occasional malformations. Besides, it is not the presence of any single indication on which our argument is grounded, but the simultaneous presence of a great number of indications. It is these in their entirety that distinguish the Negro so notably, and remove him toward the anthropoids; and over against this fact the occasional aberrations among the Whites have no argumentative weight whatever.

That the Afro-Americans are by no means racially identical, though racially related, is a fact well known, but worth recalling. Some are racially very distinctly superior to others, even as were their ancestors in the African fatherland. On this point we submit the highly intelligent and unprejudiced testimony of Nathaniel Southgate Shaler, the well-known professor of geology in Harvard University. In the Popular Science Monthly (Vol. 57), he attempts a classification of the Southern Blacks. First come those of the "Guinea type"—the purest Negro—who are "distinctly of a low type," and who number one-half of all. Those of the Zulu type are much higher, and number perhaps five per cent. of all. The Arab Negro, found in Virginia, is of a finer and more delicate mould, and numbers (say) one per cent. The Red Negroes, the Bongos and Mittus mentioned by Schweinfurth as "red-brown," like their native soil (Heart of Africa, Vol. I., p. 261), are Albinoidal, and number perhaps one per cent. The rest are of mixed types. The Guinea "folk are of essentially limited intelligence;" the Zulus are fit for anything that ordinary men of our own race can do; the Arabs are more educable, but of a sombre disposition; the red are inferior. The Mulattoes are of feeble vitality, rarely surviving beyond middle age. Professor Shaler's father, an able physician, had never seen a half-breed more than sixty years old. As the reputation of the Mulatto is generally bad, perhaps unjustly, "we may welcome the fact that this mixed stock is likely to disappear" (pp. 33-38). In a later article in the same volume, Professor Shaler contributes some valuable thoughts and estimates. Thus: "The simple yet valuable lessons of the soil-tiller they have had. For the greater number of their race, particularly those of the Guinea type, this grade of employment is as high as they may be expected to attain" (p. 148). "I feel safe in saying, from the basis of personal experience with the negroes, that somewhere near one-third of them are fit to be trained for mechanical employment of a fairly high grade" (p. 149). We do not see how it is possible to call in question either the competence or the fair-mindedness of this distinguished observer. It is worthy of special attention that he attests both the hopeless inferiority of the (pure Negro) Guinea type and at the same time its decisive numerical preponderance. The real question before us, then, concerns not so much the Negro in general, of whom there are notably superior varieties, as the very lowest Negro that West Africa has yet produced.

Here, then, we let the anatomical argument rest for the present. A minuter treatment will be found in a more appropriate connection in a following chapter.

It is a favourite subterfuge of the champions of the Black man to ascribe his unamiable characteristics of mind and temper, if not of body, to the centuries of enslavement, debasement, and even persecution that he has passed on this continent. Now we have no apology whatever to offer for the "institution" of African slavery. We recoiled from it instinctively at the dawn of consciousness, and we regard it now as an unmitigated curse to the people that practise it. But we must not leave unexposed the gross error in the defence just mentioned. These centuries have indeed been centuries of enslavement, but certainly not of debasement nor any form of retrogression. For slavery is and has been, from time immemorial, practically universal in the fatherland of the Negro—slavery more cruel and degrading and inhuman than is known elsewhere on the globe. We enter into no details, unwilling to make our pages needlessly repulsive. In fact, the training of servitude in the South has worked mightily for the Negro's advancement—not unlike the domestication of the lower animals. Any who will read the descriptions of travellers, or the pages of Lombroso—L'Uomo Bianco e L'Uomo di Colore—must admit that the humanizing of the African in the South has proceeded surprisingly far. However elementary and contradictory may be his notion and his practice of morality now, on his native heath he has practically no morality at all. "It is more correct to say of the Negro that he is non-moral than immoral. All the social institutions are at the same low level, and throughout the historic period seem to have made no perceptible advance, except under the stimulus of foreign (in recent times notably of Mohammedan) influences.... Slavery continues everywhere to prevail ... cannibalism is practiced ... human flesh appears to be sold in the open marketplace" (Keane). All this talk, then, of the Negro's degradation, wrought by his American slavery, is the absolute inversion of the truth.

But if the Black man has advanced so remarkably in Southern slavery, may we not expect him to advance still more remarkably, especially now that he is a free man? At first blush, this expectation may seem plausible; but a very little reflection and observation must show its vanity. The first sharp breath of winter lends a keen edge to the appetite; the continued cold does not make it keener and keener. The fagged-out man of business or leader of society retires to some cool and quiet health resort and reacts almost instantly. In a week he gains ten pounds, in two weeks fifteen, in a month twenty; but it would be a great mistake to suppose that this rate of gain could be maintained for any considerable time. The natural effect of the changed and improved conditions is soon exhausted, the limits set in the constitution of the subject are soon reached. So, too, in the domestication of plants and animals. A marvellous superficial alteration may be speedily brought about, but the bound is close at hand and is approached with rapidly decreasing velocity that soon becomes hardly perceptible. By no such means is any steady progress possible.

Precisely so in the domestication, education, civilization of the lower races. These latter do undoubtedly possess undeveloped potentialities; they are capable of better things. The immediate result of subjecting them to new conditions that stimulate their powers may often be highly gratifying. But herein lies no promise whatever of any progressive amelioration. The boundaries are near by; nor can they be overstepped by any such extra-organic agencies. Moreover, it must not be forgotten that, in perhaps every such case, there is some sacrifice—it may be a fatal sacrifice—of the native vigour of the primitive stock.

This reflection is completely confirmed by the actual example of the Negro in a state of freedom. Unless all the statistical indications be grossly misleading, the movement of the Afro-American average in the last generation has been down and not up, backward and not forward. [12] Especially the physical decline has been measurable and ominous. In Haiti the same experiment has been carried much further, and with results proportionately more disastrous. A hundred years of internecine strife have witnessed nothing but a slow reversion to barbarism. The interest on the public debt remains unpaid, agriculture is most primitive, manufactures languish, the industries for which the island was once famous are dead or dying, the beautiful French language is Africanized into a structureless patois. [13]

Here, too, is the natural place for one of the most plausible and at the same time most sophistical arguments yet advanced for the essential comparability, if not the perfect equality, of the White and the Black—an argument frequent on the lips of the most conspicuous leader of his people, namely: that the Negro, and only the Negro, has been able to maintain himself against or in presence of the aggressive Anglo-Saxon (we do not pretend to reproduce his words, not having them at hand, but we do not misrepresent his idea). However, the Negro has not maintained himself against, but only with and for, the Anglo-Saxon. A century long the Blacks did greatly flourish, because they were greatly cherished, in the South, despite occasional cruelty, which rarely or never hindered development. Fatuously enough, the Whites fancied it to their own interest to warm up the Blacks into the most vigorous life. The ante-bellum slaves were, perhaps, the best-nurtured labouring population to be found anywhere in the history of mankind. Moreover, their stock was actually strengthened by artificial selection. No wonder, then, that the Black man more than maintained himself under conditions that were racially so extremely favourable. Of course, little credit or none at all goes to the humanity of the slaveholder. The best that could be said would be that he displayed a semi-enlightened selfishness. He considered his slaves

Something better than his dog, a little dearer than his horse.

It is, indeed, a wide-spread paradox of civilization, that the possessors exhibit far deeper wisdom in the treatment of their possessions than in the treatment of themselves. They choose food for their children less rationally than for their cows. A royal weakling was gazing admiringly at a lordly bull, and exclaimed: "What a magnificent specimen he is!" "Yes," replied the bull, "if your ancestors had been selected as carefully as mine, you would be a magnificent specimen, too."

There are yet other considerations, as the linguistic, of much weight, but of subtile or else of delicate nature, into which at present we forbear to enter. However, one further reflection of a very general nature must not be omitted. The diversities of type found even among Europeans, still more among other Caucasians, are remarkable and universally recognized. Norwegian and Italian, Russian and Spaniard, Cretan and Scot, can hardly be confounded, not to contrast Dane and Hindu, Teuton and Arab, Irishman and Jew. These diversities affect not merely or mainly the body, but still more the mind, all its products and institutions. Moreover, they are very persistent, maintaining and asserting themselves in scarcely diminished force from generation to generation, sometimes even under levelling conditions of highly composite intermixture. "We have seen how tenaciously they have clung to the type of their ancestors throughout all the vicissitudes of ages" (Ripley, Pop. Sci. Mon., March, 1898, p. 608).

The thread of national character, though interlaced and interwoven with bewildering perplexity, is found to stretch itself unbroken through the ages. In continuous illustration of this truth we may cite the great work of Lapouge, L'Aryen, and the researches of the school he so brilliantly represents. Furthermore, these differences are not merely sidewise, right and left, this way and that, in the same plane of quality. They are at least three-dimensional; they are up and down, higher and lower. The one race is distinctly superior, the other inferior, in some given particular. While all branches of this great family are very highly endowed, yet they are by no means equally endowed. Each has its points of excellence, but these points are not the same in number or importance. Even among these members of the same family, there is by no means equality; there are favourites of nature. Now even the protagonist of the Black man does not controvert Mr. Darwin, does not deny that the distinction between Negro and European is apparently great enough to mark off two species; it merely says the distinction is not of superior and inferior. But how can this be? Will any one deny that the Greek was measurably superior to the Mede in a host of important particulars? That he has excelled all other sons of men in certain respects? That he has fallen markedly below the Jew and the German in others? If, then, distinctions of inferior and superior do undoubtedly obtain between stems so closely knit physiologically and genetically, with what show of reason can it be held that varieties, like Negro and European, distinct enough for "true and good species," are yet not to be distinguished as inferior and superior? In what respect, pray then, are they distinguishable? Possibly some one may say that black, as a color for man, is neither better nor worse than white—we doubt it, but let it pass; that a broad, flat nose and thick, everted lips are neither inferior nor superior to the straight, clean-cut nose and lips curved like the bow of Phœbus. But even if we do not dispute about such tastes, the list of such regards is a very short one, and when we come to the profounder mental, moral, and social differences, we can find no other terms than greater and less to describe the relative endowments of the widely sundered races. The one breed of dogs does not differ from the other merely in length of hair or shape of head and face; it is superior or inferior in size, strength, courage, agility, endurance, ferocity, fidelity, docility, intelligence. Can we say less, must we not say more, of the varieties of men? We should really like to know, if the Greeks were neither superior nor inferior to the Bushmen, what was the real distinction between them?

Once again, if millennial contact and intermingling of such near affinities as Teuton and Alpine Kelt have not availed to efface their distinguishing features, either of body or of mind—if the wonted ancestral fires still live in the remote descendants—how can we hope for aught else from the mixture of European and African? Will not the slumberous apathy in which the Dark Continent broods away its æons surely fall upon the people that drink its blood into their own veins? Not to anticipate such a result is to scorn analogy, to despise science, to defy history.

We now come to the second question: Will intermingling with inferiors really lower the superior stock? It seems very hard to believe that any sober-minded man can long hesitate to answer, Yes. Does any breeder of horses or cattle or dogs or pigeons, or any cultivator of grains or flowers, or any student of heredity in either plants or animals, entertain any doubt whatever? We trow not. We need not, however, appeal to general principles, or to common sense, or to universal observation of the lower planes of life. The mingling of races is no new thing on our planet; it has been widely diffused, and the results are matters of record. We shall content ourselves with citing a single authority, than whom there is none higher—whom not even the most suspicious will suspect of Southern ignorance and prejudice. We allude to the distinguished author of "The American Commonwealth," and the "Assimilation of Races in the United States."

In his Romanes Lecture of June 7, 1902, on "The Relations of the Advanced and the Backward Races of Mankind," Mr. Bryce says (p. 24): "Where two races are physiologically near to one another, the result of intermixture is good. Where they are remote, it is less satisfactory, by which I mean not only that it is below the level of the higher stock, but that it is not generally and evidently better than the lower stock.... But the mixture of whites and negroes, or of whites and Hindus, or of the American aborigines and negroes, seldom shows good results. The hybrid stocks, if not inferior in physical strength to either of those whence they spring, are apparently less persistent, and might—so at least some observers hold—die out if they did not marry back into one or other of the parent races. Usually, of course, they marry back into the lower." (N.B. Mr. Bryce, it appears, is so "provincial, unintelligent and unchristian" as to assume that the Whites are superior—a higher stock, and the Negroes inferior—a lower stock!) Again, p. 26: "... the two general conclusions which the facts so far as known suggest are these: that races of marked physical dissimilarity do not tend to intermarry, and that when and so far as they do, the average offspring is apt to be physically inferior to the average of either parent stock, and probably more beneath the average mental level of the superior than above the average mental level of the inferior." Again, p. 35: "Should this view be correct, it dissuades any attempt to mix races so diverse as are the white European and the negroes." And on p. 36: "The matter ought to be regarded from the side neither of the white nor of the black, but of the future of mankind at large. Now for the future of mankind nothing is more vital than that some races should be maintained at the highest level of efficiency, because the work they can do for thought and art and letters, for scientific discovery, and for raising the standard of conduct, will determine the general progress of humanity. If therefore we were to suppose the blood of the races which are now most advanced to be diluted, so to speak, by that of the most backward, not only would more be lost to the former than would be gained to the latter, but there would be a loss, possibly an irreparable loss, to the world at large." Lastly, p. 39: "The moral to be drawn from the case of the Southern States seems to be that you must not, however excellent your intentions and however admirable your sentiments, legislate in the teeth of facts.... Nevertheless, the general opinion of dispassionate men has come to deem the action taken in a.d. 1870 a mistake."

Now, we are quite willing to concede that possibly, even probably, there are exceptions to the general conclusions of this eminently fair-minded investigator. We feel sure there are many cases in which the Mulatto is raised distinctly above his coal-black parent; we believe there are some cases, relatively rare, absolutely frequent, in which he rises measurably above the median line, towards his white parent. The law of Mendel, or any other plausible law of inheritance, would lead us to expect such a result. And yet, the extreme difficulty of organic ascent, whether of the individual or of the race, as compared with the fatal facility of descent, prepares us to expect, in general terms, precisely what Mr. Bryce affirms. It is so easy to fall ill! It is so hard to get well! In any case, that the average of cross-breeding between widely separate races, like Black and White, rises above the mid-line or approaches the superior, is a proposition that runs squarely against all evidence and all reason, nor will anything but invincible prepossession maintain it.

True it is, that a great authority, a stalwart champion of the Black man, whose attention we had called to these extracts, declares in reply that he is "not at all affected by Mr. Bryce's statements." He thinks we have here, in the United States, a much broader basis of induction than the Englishman has (as if Mr. Bryce, the author of "Assimilation of Races in the United States" [1892], of all men, could neglect or ignore this important example!); he has in mind a case of triple mixture, reaching back several generations, yet the family are vigorous and of excellent character; and he refers to thousands of Mulattoes that are perfect physically—all of which may be true and yet not enlightening. We sometimes meet with not uncultured persons who are firmly persuaded that the moon controls the weather. Tell them that the most minute and accurate observations, extending through half a century and designed to test the matter, have failed to reveal any connection between the weather and the moon's phases; point out to them the insuperable obstacles in the way of their opinion—and they reply that they are "not at all affected by your statements", that they and their ancestors have observed for generations that changes in the weather coincide accurately with changes in the moon, that the broadest induction in their own neighbourhood shows clearly that beans will not flourish if planted in the dark of the moon, and that it would be madness to plant potatoes in the light. If any other facts or observations seem not to conform to this theory—why, so much the worse for them!

The general inferiority of the mixed stock has passed into a proverb even in Africa, where it is said: "A god created the whites; I know not who created the blacks; certainly a devil created the mongrels." So reports Livingstone (quoted by Lombroso), and adds that he had seen but one Portuguese Mestizo of robust health. In Brazil it is held that the mingling of Indian with Latin blood has not produced evil results, [14] but everywhere else such remote crossings have been more or less disastrous. Strikingly is this the case with the Zambos—the mixture of Indian and Negro; they are mainly degenerates and degraded. Thus E. G. Squier, writing of Honduras in the Encyclopædia Britannica, Vol. XII., says: "A small part of the coast, above Cape Gracias, is occupied by the Sambos, a mixed race of Indians and Negroes, which, however, is fast disappearing." In Mexico, Central and South America, the half-breeds are everywhere stationary or declining. In India the Eurasians (20,000 in Calcutta) "touch a level of degradation which is far lower than any reached by the pure heathen about them. They inherit defects more conspicuously than virtues from both races from which they spring" (Pop. Sci. Mon., Nov., 1892). In Japan the inferior Ainos are passing away before the superior Japanese. The hybrids are never healthy or vigorous, and vanish with the third or fourth generation. Here, in the United States, the testimony is all against the Mulatto. In a report of the Provost-Marshal General, the opinions of physicians stand eleven to one against the Mulatto as "scrofulous and consumptive," "degenerated physically," and the one favourable judgement reposes on only two instances. The anthropometry of the Mulatto is decidedly against him. His average lung capacity, the most significant of measurements, was found by Gould to be only 158.9 cubic inches against 163.5 for the pure Black, and 184.7 for the White. His respiration rate was equally unfavourable, being 19 per minute against 17.7 for the pure Black, and 16.4 for the White. We refer, also, to the testimony of Dr. Shaler (p. 52), that he had never known a Mulatto to pass threescore. The writer remembers the first use he ever heard of the word "cachectic;" his father spoke of it as a term generally applicable to Mulattoes.

From the convergence of all such testimony, which may be multiplied indefinitely, there seems no escape whatever. We must concede, with Lombroso: "It is impossible to contemplate these facts without admitting that marriages between some human races are much less fertile and happy than between others;" and especially unfortunate are those between such extremes as Whites and Negroes. When such anthropologists as Waitz, Serres, Deschamps, Bodichon, anticipate a millennium from universal miscegenation, it is only sentimentalism or else forgetfulness of the distinction drawn so properly by Topinard (Eléments d'Anthropologie générale, 1885) between the intermingling of nearly related and of distantly related races. In the first case the result is, in general, certainly good; in the latter, it is quite as certainly bad.

But let us now, merely for the moment and for the sake of argument, admit that both our premises are in doubt; that, perhaps, after all the Negro is not inferior organically—mentally, morally, or physically—to the Caucasian, and that interfertility might, perhaps, work no deterioration; would the case be essentially altered? Assuredly not. For even then the most extreme negrophilist must still admit that there is, at least, a reasonable doubt; even if the Negro be not proved inferior, yet he is certainly not proved equal, and there is a large body of at least apparent evidence against him; even if it be not certain that miscegenation would work deterioration, it is at least very possible and seemingly probable. Who, then, would have the foolhardihood to make this experiment of race amalgamation—an experiment which, once made, is made forever; whose consequences could never be undone—when there is at least and at the very lowest an undeniable possibility, not to say certainty, that those consequences would be disastrous in the extreme? Can we imagine a more wanton folly? Would such an experiment beseem any other place so well as the madhouse?

But some one will say that we are fighting "bogies"; that no one in the North, much less in the South, desires any such amalgamation. Do not believe it! The intense, the supreme yearning of large bodies of Negroes is for social recognition among the Whites—more especially for intermarriage with their haughty, old-time despisers. Who does not know this, simply does not understand the dominant facts of Southern life. [15] True, there may be no longer anyone in the North that openly advocates miscegenation—no one that would welcome or even tolerate it in his family, though we remember to have read years ago a distinct declaration, by no mean authority, that it might be a positive advantage to pour the strong, rich blood of the Black man into the languid veins of the Southern Whites! However, granted that all would now [16] disavow such a sentiment—and let us accept the disavowal unreservedly—the fact remains that the highest authorities in the North, the factors that form public opinion and guide legislation, have never yet to our knowledge raised their voices against miscegenation in the South. What means this expressive silence? In this momentous, all-overshadowing controversy, there is no middle ground. He that is not against amalgamation is for it. Who so does not oppose must ipso facto favour it. Only ciphers are neither plus nor minus.

Moreover, we affirm that he who denies our two cardinal theses, who denies the racial inferiority of the Negro, and the racial deterioration of the Mulatto, must consistently hold that mongrelization of the South is positively desirable; and we should esteem him not the less, but the more, for boldly defending it. [17] For if such miscegenation involves no declination from the Caucasian standard, then there is no reason whatever against it. On the other hand, there are strong reasons that favour it (as Bryce himself admits, p. 27, it "has two great merits"); in particular, it would bring about speedily and permanently a settlement of the race question, and a settlement far more amicable than is otherwise possible. There is no escape from this conclusion; and no disclaimer, however honest, can be adequate. The inference of approval, from non-hostility to miscegenation, is immediate and unavoidable; and we may justly hold our opponents to the logical consequence of their teachings, however earnestly they may reject it.

Herewith, then, for the present, we sheathe the sword for lack of argument; for it seems scarcely worth while to point out that when we demonstrate the racial inferiority of the Negroids, and insist upon the necessity of an impassable social chasm, we by no means excuse or extenuate any form of cruelty or injustice or oppression or inconsideration, political or other. Replies to our arguments are not pertinent when they fail to note this distinction, even though they may quote passages from the "Apostle of Heredity," written nearly a generation before his call to that apostolate. The humane man resents the maltreatment of inferiors no less quickly because he recognizes their inferiority; it is they that especially move his compassion. The ancient Hindu knew and felt this when he wrote: "He who needlessly tramples upon a worm in his path, that soul is darkly alienate from God."

This remark conducts us very near to certain semi-political phases of the matter; which, however, we leave to the politician, the pulpit, and the press. These are careful and troubled about many things; but there is one thing needful—that the rights of the generations unborn be guarded, that the Caucasian race integrity be preserved.




The que still hangs behind him.


In the foregoing chapter we have propounded and answered the question as to the native inferiority of the Black race; and now the query arises, What more? Have we not already said that such is the end of the matter? But the subject is of transcendent importance, and we must not disguise from the reader that the considerations thus far adduced may not yet be admitted as perfectly conclusive by a certain highly intelligent class of thinkers. There is, namely, a very respectable school of anthropologists who will take nothing for granted and are disposed to call in question the most plausible assumptions and leave us no ground to stand on but what has been won by the severest logic. We can the less afford to pass by the contentions of these savants, since we think their principles are in the main correct, and we are in active sympathy with their general methods. In the present case, to be sure, we hold that they have not proved faithful to the pure reason, and that their skepticism will be found destitute of any sufficient warrant.

What, then, are the scruples of these critics? What niceties of demonstration, may they still insist, have passed unobserved? We shall use their own words as nearly as may be—the words of a "specially competent anthropologist."

(1) It is denied that any inference lies, in any particular case, from the brain to the mind. "No principle applicable to individuals can be laid down. Inspection of a brain, no matter how minute, will not permit a legitimate inference as to the intellectual status of the owner." This must be granted without reserve.

(2) Even in dealing with large groups, as of a thousand men, with brains averaging fifty-three and forty-six ounces, respectively, with corresponding physical proportions, "it is possible, but by no means certain, that the average mental capacity of the former would surpass that of the latter. But even such an inference would be based upon very scanty evidence." It seems plain that the word "possible" is here put incautiously for "probable." Otherwise the sentence is empty of meaning. As so corrected, it must stand. The only difference of opinion that could arise would concern the degree of probability. If we have read the evidence nearly aright, that degree would be very high, but it could not rise to certainty. To this extremely important matter we shall return at the proper place.

(3) With respect to "complexity of structure," which is supposed to condition or to indicate mental development, there is declared to be a "lack of any definite and certain knowledge as to the fundamental facts." This, also, seems true.

Quantitative information is wanting, but qualitative is at hand. We have no definite and certain knowledge as to the significance of the gyri and sulci in the brain; but this does not invalidate the general proposition that relates them in some way with mental power. The brain of a Helmholtz would almost certainly be deeply carved; the brain of an imbecile would almost certainly be uncommonly smooth. Between these extremes there lie relations infinite in variety and impossible to grade, so crossed and intercrossed are they with other elements. Nevertheless, the two opposite poles remain fixed, and the general indications of convolutions and of smoothness, other things being equal, cannot be mistaken.

(4) As to skull capacity, there are many difficulties in the way, and "the value of this evidence has come to be regarded as less than it was once considered to be, but still to a certain extent significant. In a general way it may be said to bear out the observations on the actual brains." We do not see how it could well be expected to do much more. Here, then, are three indicia—weight of brain, complexity of its structure, capacity of skull—each related directly, though indeterminately, to power of mind. If we call them x, y, z, then we may say, with some approach to truth, that mental strength depends upon their product, each taken with an unknown exponent, thus: xp yq zr. This expression, to be sure, is not adequate; there are yet other factors, it may be many, as the post-pubertal extension of structural elements, and therewith of physiological connections, which we have no means of measuring or observing. But the real significance of these three is not, indeed cannot be, doubted. Thus, Manouvrier determined the skull capacity of thirty-two distinguished men to average 1663 cc., or 103 cc. above the general mean of 1560 cc.—an excess of nearly 7 per cent. Again, the mean weight of brain of thirty-four such men reached 1533 grammes—an excess of 163 over the average (1370), or almost exactly 12 per cent. No amount of reasonable allowance can rob these results of their import. It is no answer to say that the cranial capacity of forty-one murderers averaged 1593 cc., or 33 cc. (about two per cent.) above the mean. We see no reason why a murderer might not have more than ordinary intelligence, though many be degenerates; it is not at all unlikely that his central nervous system or some part of it should be highly developed. Unless we err widely, not a few of the greatest characters of history have been great criminals.

(5) What conclusions are recommended by "all these facts and factors"? "Truly, the results are meager. We are probably justified in saying that, anatomically, the brains of negroid races are somewhat less developed than those of Europeans." But it is held that "a little reflection shows the comparative insignificance of the distinction.... The most that can be said is that the European series will show more very large brains than the negroid, and the negroid series more very small brains than the Europeans." Precisely! And it is just this excess of "very large brains," or at least of its general correlate, very large minds, that has the profoundest "significance" for civilization, for all that is great and glorious in history and in humanity. Not only must we, in accordance with the law of Deviation from the Average, interpret this excess of "very large brains" as implying a higher general level, but the meaning and value of these exceptions are incalculable. [18] Who can estimate the import of the one brain in a million, when it is the brain of Moses or Mohammed, of Aristotle or Archimedes, of Vergil or Galilei, of Leibnitz or Voltaire, of Darwin or Washington? Such brains are the foci of the orbits of history; such men blaze out the pathways for the feet of their kind. Without them we wander round and round, lost in the erroneous wood. The race that can produce such "very large brains" is the race of advancement and culture; they shine like stars in the firmament of history, and the multitudes steer their courses thereby. It is these exceptions that mark out the line between progress and stagnation, between civilization and barbarism; a race that is deficient in such exceptions is a race already condemned.

It is altogether vain to interpose that this acknowledged anatomical defect is, after all, only slight. The difference between the brains of a fish-monger and of a Socrates may be only slight—an ounce or so in the scale, a line or so in depth of convolution; yet it corresponds to the interval between mediety and the vertex of genius. Such differences are vanishingly small, or inexpressibly great, according to the origin of reckoning. And herewith we uncover the fallacy that lies so snugly hidden away in the phrase "comparative insignificance." Undoubtedly! If we reckon from the amœba, the witling seems scarcely distinguishable from the wit; but if we reckon from the average of humanity, they start asunder like the poles. The summits of the Himalayas are only some four or five miles above the valley of the Ganges; estimated from the centre of the earth, this difference is little more than one-thousandth of the whole—a difference hardly appreciable to the eye, even when armed with a microscope; and yet it means the difference between the impenetrable jungle and the inaccessible minarets of the roof of the world. The difference between some "Rafael" and some imitation may be very slight and escape the uncritical eye, and yet make out the distinction between a masterpiece and a daub. Illustrations abound. It is a multitude of trifles that constitutes perfection; but perfection is not a trifle. That the recognized and constated superiority of the European brain is slight, by no means implies that the "mental expression" of this superiority may not be illimitably grand.

Since the question of brain-weights is extremely important, it does not seem fair to the reader to furnish him only vague, general statements. Accordingly, we here submit something more definite, even though it appear like a long parenthesis inserted in the body of our discourse.

From the autopsies of 405 Whites, Blacks, and intermediates, made by Surgeon Ira Russell, the following conclusions have been drawn by Dr. Sanford B. Hunt, surgeon of United States Volunteers in the Civil War: "(1) The standard weight of the negro brain is over five ounces less than that of the white. (2) Slight intermixture of white blood diminishes the negro brain from its normal standard, but when the infusion of white blood amounts to one-half (mulatto), it determines a positive increase in the negro brain, which, in the quadroon, is only three ounces below the white standard. (3) The percentage of exceptionally small brains is largest among negroes having but a small proportion of white blood." Of these 405, there were 141 Blacks, and only twenty-four Whites; the others were mixed. We may omit these latter, and may substitute the results of 278 other autopsies of Whites, and form this table:

  Average Max. Min. 60 oz. 55-60 50-55 45-50 40-45 35-40  35 
141 B. 46.96 56 35¾ 0 5 42 51 38 3
24 W. 52.06 64 44½ 1 4 11 7
278 W. 49.05 65 34    7 28 99 97 39 7 1

Here we observe: Dr. Hunt's (1) does not seem warranted; the number (24) of White brains weighed seems too small. But the weights of the 278 Whites show that the smaller weight of the Negro brain is a fact. More extensive observation shows that the Black average is about four ounces below the White. The absence of very large brains among the Blacks comes out most distinctly. There were no Black brains weighing over fifty-six ounces, only five weighing so much as fifty-five; whereas, eight White brains weighed over sixty ounces, and forty weighed over fifty-five. Likewise of the twenty-four Whites, only one fell under forty-five ounces, but forty-one of the 141 Blacks; also, only forty-seven of the 278 Whites; it is plain, then, that large brains predominate among the Whites and small ones among the Blacks.

This, however, is not nearly all the evidence on this question. In the course of an elaborate article in the Philosophical Transactions for 1868, pp. 505 sqq., Dr. J. Barnard Davis makes this remark: "As a general conclusion, without analyzing the results of Tiedemann's gaugings of negro skulls, it may be unhesitatingly asserted that the brain-weight of negroes is positively below that of Europeans" (p. 522). "The general mean of our African races, as deduced from 113 skulls, 53 of men and 60 of women, a tolerably equal proportion, is 43.89 ounces, or 1244 grams. This is 3.23 ounces, or ninety-one grams, less than our European general mean" (p. 523). He also finds the mean internal capacity of 393 European skulls to be 92.3 cubic inches, and 113 African skulls to be 86.9 cubic inches—a defect of nearly 7 per cent. Morton found the average capacity of 62 native African skulls to be 83 cubic inches, and of 12 Afro-American skulls to be 82 cubic inches.

More recently (1880), Dr. Bischoff has published at Bonn a very thorough work on "Das Hirngewicht des Menschen," in which the present subject is handled minutely and very temperately. We translate some of his remarkably sane and judicial conclusions: "From all of this it follows that we are by no means justified in affirming outright the proposition that brain-weight and spiritual capacity and achievement keep equal pace and that a large and heavy brain of itself betokens a man highly endowed in both respects, a small and light brain a man niggardly equipped. But just as little justified would be the conclusions that size and weight of brain stand in no connection with spiritual gifts and accomplishments. Rather must we be convinced that both factors, brain-weight and spiritual capacity and achievement, are magnitudes too complex for their parallelism to appear to be proved so simply, although the same (parallelism) is none the less present" (p. 142).

The following seems to have been written with some foreboding of the more recent anthropology that "minimizes this difference" between European and Negroid, and regards "the mental gap as more apparent than real, and due rather to experience and training than to innate factors."

"The capacity for spiritual achievement is, I believe, as regards both magnitude and variety, always innate, a gift of Nature, and expressed in the magnitude and weight of the brain and the development of the convolutions, either in the whole or in the single parts. In it, aside from morbid alterations, the individual can bring about no change, neither by addition nor by subtraction. But the degree and the kind of the development of this endowment (Ausbildung dieser Anlage) depends on a thousand other conditions, partly quite beyond the insight and will of the individual—partly, however, subject thereto. All that we call education, culture, social position, example, and, on the part of the individual, good-will, industry, zeal, etc., work for the development of the endowment, and the achievement depends thereon. Endowment, as already said, is unalterable; but the degree of the development and achievement may vary a thousandfold" (p. 165).

On p. 169, Bischoff starts the interesting query, whether any enhancement of the endowment (Steigerung der Anlage) in general or in particular directions, through increase of the brain, in general or in particular parts, be actual or possible in the course of time, along the path of culture (auf dem Wege der Zuchtung). Broca thought that he had observed a change in the skull capacity of Parisians, in the lapse of centuries; but his results (thinks Bischoff) are very far from being sure. Thus far there is no proof of any such possibility. But even if this latter were conceded, Bischoff adds, the actuality of such a change would by no means follow. So great is the present endowment that all progress that can thus far be proved, may be explained through the development of this endowment, and such will, doubtless, for a long time yet, be the case as regards both the individual and the generations (p. 170). We may add that Bischoff has no doubt whatever either of the lesser brain-weight or of the lower mental capacity of the African Negro.

When, now, we ask what is the real significance of these weights, we are fortunately able to refer to the tables of Dr. H. Matiegka, given in Part I. of his researches "Ueber das Hirngewicht, die Schädelkapacität und die Kopfform, sowie deren Beziehungen zur psychischen Thätigkeit des Menschen" (Sitzb. d. kön. böhm. Ges. d. Wiss. 1902). He has arranged 235 brain-weights in six groups, according to occupation, proceeding from the lowest labourers at odd jobs, who could not learn a trade or find steady employment, up to men of notable intellectual power. Here is the table, showing the number in each group and the average weight of brain:

14 Day-labourers 1410.0 grams
34 Labourers 1433.5 "
14 Porters, watchmen, etc. 1435.7 "
123 Mechanics, workers at trades, etc. 1449.6 "
28 Business men, teachers, clerks, professional musicians, photographers, etc. 1468.5 "
22 College-bred scholars, physicians, etc. 1500.0 "
235 Average of all 1451.5 grams
    or 51.20 oz.

Here we observe that the excess of this average over that of the 141 Blacks is 4.24 ounces. Also we remark that the average of the lowest of Matiegka's groups, the shiftless and incompetent, is nearly 48.61 ounces, which is much above the average (46.96) yielded by Dr. Russell's 141 measurements of pure Blacks. Look at it another way. The defect of the day-labourer's brain, as compared with the scholar's, in Matiegka's groups, is precisely six per cent. Even if the average white brain weighed only fifty ounces, a defect of six per cent. would reduce it only to forty-seven ounces, which is still above the average of the Blacks. This latter, then, falls appreciably below the lowest white standard.

Once more, we now come to see clearly the immense significance of the admittedly "somewhat less developed Negroid brain." The famous lines of Browning seem to have been written especially for this occasion:

Oh, the little more, and how much it is!

And the little less, and what worlds away!

The difference between the averages of the highest and the lowest of the Matiegka groups is only six per cent.; and yet how infinite its moment for humanity and civilization! The difference meanwhile between the general averages of the White and the Black is little if any less than eight per cent. (52-48 = 4, that is, 1-13 or 7.7 per cent.). Who, then, can compute its import for the history of the race?

To be sure, it is easy to pooh-pooh the Bohemian's measurements and to scout his averages as reckoned from too scanty material. Nor would we attach to them any undue importance. We have never denied that there are many disturbing factors. Nevertheless, the general indication seems altogether unmistakable. Nothing can disguise or deeply obscure the broad patent fact that all the meridians of evidence converge towards one and the same pole, namely: The average Negroid brain is sensibly inferior to the average Caucasian; and even a slight defect or excess in average is correlated with the profoundest meaning for culture and for civilization.

What must be said, then, of such as proclaim: "This fable [of Negroid inferiority] has been repeated and gladly believed.... But there is absolutely no physiological basis for it so far as the best studies of brain structure go.... The arrogance of Anglo-Saxon and Caucasian supremacy must find its justification, if anywhere, in the bare will and brute power to have it so, rather than in any conclusions of science"? 'The Apostle' has already shaped the answer: "I bear them witness that they have a zeal for man, but not according to knowledge."

(6) As "minimizing this difference still further," it is observed that "the Eskimo even shows a brain weight and development well above the average of whites. Here again, however, the material is too scanty to permit of generalization." Altogether "too scanty," it would seem. Hardly half a dozen such brains (we speak under correction) have been weighed or examined. Besides, no one would maintain that weight alone is sufficient. That large brains generally go with great minds by no means implies the converse, that great minds generally go with large brains. If the Eskimo brain be really heavier than the European, which is by no means proved, and yet the Eskimo mind inferior, the meaning is that in some other unknown respect of organization the Eskimo brain falls so far behind the European as more than to overbalance its excess of weight. Such a state of case is no way improbable.

(7) "If we admit a real difference between the brains of Europeans and negroes," it is still impossible to grade the intermediate races satisfactorily. But this means nothing more than that numerous factors, known and unknown, enter into the final product in some complex fashion not yet understood. It is very far from meaning that the obvious factors, constated and admitted, have not the general significance commonly claimed.

Such are the anatomical concessions that this school of anthropologists feel themselves called upon to make. The reader must observe that, however much one may "minimize," it remains at the last impossible to evaporate the solid central fact that the "Negroid brain is somewhat less developed than the European." In this fundamental indication all the facts, so far as known, concur. But this is the very core of the whole controversy. What more do we ask? What more do we need? We have never been unduly prodigal of intensive adverbs; we have never asserted that "other races are so naturally and essentially inferior in their brain structure that they can never be expected to equal the white race nor to be competent for self-government." For "who can so forecast the years?" Not we, certainly, who are neither a prophet nor the son of a prophet, nor a dealer in any such indefinitely remote futures. Our contention was and is and will be that now and here, nay more, that everywhere on the face of the earth and everywhen within recorded time, the Negro has shown himself in every definable respect incomparably inferior culturally to the Caucasian; hence it is concluded prima facie, since culture is "mental expression," that the Negro is mentally inferior to the Caucasian, and always has been so within historic, and even far back prehistoric, time. It is this historico-cultural argument that has been advanced to the forefront; and against it, where is there found, in the preceding hostile summary of anatomical facts, even the feeblest countervail? Indeed, the harmony of history and anatomy seems perfect; if neither proves or necessitates the other, yet indubitably each is about what might be expected from the other. Not one scientific fact has ever yet been adduced to weaken their mutual support.

It is precisely here, however, that another most important phase of the matter comes to light. The ingenious humanitarian fancies that he can turn the edge of the foregoing arguments completely. It was Theodor Waitz who, in his "Anthropology" (London, 1863), suggested that the relation between human culture and human faculty might be the inverse of what was commonly conceived. Instead of the culture resulting from the faculty, it might be the faculty that resulted from the culture. Accordingly, we should not say that the Greek civilization with its language, its art, its science, its philosophy, its eloquence, its literature, its civil and military life, was the outgrowth of the Greek genius, the native faculty of the Hellenic race, but rather that this genius, this spiritual faculty, this unrivalled intellectual-artistic endowment of the Greeks, was the continuous resultant at each moment in the history of the race of the collective culture-experiences through which, up to that moment, it had passed. We have tried conscientiously to state this doctrine, that race endowment is the reaction from race culture-experience, as forcibly and as plausibly as possible; but we cannot hope to have redeemed it from patent absurdity. Surely there was never a plainer case of the cart before the horse. No one denies or forgets that training and discipline do quicken and sharpen the intellectual faculties; they enable a man to make the most of himself, to realize his possibilities, to develop himself to the utmost. The power to solve a problem in algebra or geometry is the result, in part, of the previous training in those subjects. Here is the very partial and most familiar truth that lies hid away in Waitz's stupendous error. But was the ability to understand algebra and geometry given by the actual study of the same, given step by step? By no means. The knowledge necessary to understand the successive propositions does indeed grow thus step by step, but not the power. Open the book at the middle; there you may find a theorem whose proof you readily understand, because it implies very little previous knowledge. Newton at first thought Euclid's Elements a "light book," because it offered him no difficulty. But if you meet with some unfamiliar affirmation, then comes the question, why? The answer is found in some theorem already proved. Turn back to it; perhaps the proof involves some still more fundamental property, and again you ask, why? Again you must recur to some earlier theorem; and so on, until all your "whys" are answered with all possible clearness in irreducible axioms or postulates. He who has the mental ability will find this method of learning a theorem entirely practicable, and it may sometimes be found highly instructive. But it excludes all question of gradual growth of mental power through the successive "stages of culture" itself.

Consider, again, this most frequent observation. A boy will distinguish himself greatly in the high school, and perhaps in the first half of his college course. He seizes with avidity upon the elementary notions of mathematics, for instance; he revels in problems and "originals." But on approaching the steeper ascents, he finds his steps falter and his senses reel. The subtler theories and processes more and more elude his grasp; the more highly developed concepts become more and more unmanageable. Let him be never so thoroughly familiar with the mid-regions, the heights remain forever inaccessible. In such a case the honest teacher and the honest student will both admit that further pursuit would be well-nigh profitless; while something may still be learned in a way, yet real mastery is out of the question, and original work as impossible as flight to the moon. The limits of native power have been reached, and all attempts to transcend them are idle.

In music, in plastic art, in literature, in all higher forms of mental activity, even in the professions and in business, the same state of case is present. The mere technique may indeed be learned step by step, and it is by no means profitless or unimportant. But not all the "stages of culture" conceivable could ever arm the most persistent student with "faculty" to produce the Appassionata, or the Last Judgement, or Hamlet, or even a Wall Street corner in stocks. On the other hand, the inborn "faculty" speeds swiftly and easily through all such preparatory "stages of culture," or even flanks them altogether, boldly breaking new paths through unexplored regions. Nor needs it that these preliminaries should have been traversed by the ancestors of the richly endowed, who may have had no artistic or scientific experience whatever. At every point, then, this Waitzian notion of "faculty," as the efflux of culture, is seen to be an extreme distortion of the truth.

The later disciples have slightly modified the earlier view, but retain the essence. Thus it is said that "the mind of man manifests itself in different ways in different groups." Psychologically and sociologically the racial problem rests upon the explanation of these differences of mental manifestation. Two lines of reasoning are open. The differences depend either upon inherent differences of mental capacity or are due to influences of environment, using the word in its broadest sense. Either the savage represents a lower stage of mental development than his civilized relative or he does not. The answer to the question presented is not easy ... it is interesting to note that the trend of authoritative opinion is distinctly in the direction of minimizing the degree of difference of mental capacity between savage and civilized man and regarding the mental gap as more apparent than real and due rather to experience and training than to innate factors. To paraphrase a recent writer, "it is rather a question of mental contents than of mental capacities." Such is the latest statement of this school.

The most dangerous errors are those that contain a certain element of truth. The present is a case in point. Let it be noted, then, that the alternatives mentioned above are not alternatives at all; they are not mutually exclusive, but quite consistent and perhaps always co-existent. The "two lines of reasoning" do not intersect, but are parallel. The "differences depend," not "either ... or," but both "upon inherent differences of mental capacity" and "are due to influences of environment." The twain have undoubtedly acted and reacted upon each other. The divine law, to him that hath shall be given, from him that hath not shall be taken away, has found here the widest application. The process of evolving a civilization or a human type is a most complex one, and we by no means exclude or "minimize" the objective factors when we frankly recognize the subjective ones. Here lies the primal error of the prevalent humanitarianism. It perceives that education is much; it rashly concludes that education is all. But the homeliest wisdom knows far better.

It is not all in training up

A child against its will:

To silver scour a pewter cup,—

It will be pewter still.

No, a thousand times no! Environment is not all nor nearly all—nay, not nearly half. Says Lombroso: "The action of climate and circumstance is very slight by the side of heredity" (op. cit., p. 88). Saith Heraclitus, "Much learning does not teach to have mind"; saith Pindar, "His art is true who by nature hath knowledge," and he scorns the crows that have but learned. Let the outer impact be what it will, it is the "inherent" qualities that determine the response. Sing out the natural C; among a score of tuning-forks only one will reply. Nay more; different constitutions may make exactly opposite replies: "the roar of the lion scatters the sheep, but gathers the jackals"; the prayer of Clarence but hardens the heart of the first murderer, though it softens the soul of the second. All this, one would think, a child might understand. Nature blazons it on every leaf and every star, and proclaims it with a million tongues; but overhumane doctrinaires will neither see nor hear anything that impugns their sacrosanct dogma, that "all men are created equal". "The trend of authoritative opinion" insists on "minimizing the degree of difference of mental capacity" and regarding the mental gap as more apparent than real and due rather to experience and training than to innate factors—whereat the current philanthropy claps its hands and cries, "Eureka! Come, now! Let us train and experience the Negro and close up the mental gap in a jiffy"! But will some manufacturer or wholesale importer of "authoritative opinions" kindly inform us what "mental gap" has ever been closed up by "experience and training"?

Great, indeed, is the potence of "environment"; greater, by far, the potence of heredity. Fortunately we are not left quite in the dark as to their relative importance. In discussing "race suicide" an eminent scholar, who is always sage and sagacious, save only when celeri saucius Africo, declares: "That those who are intellectually the best in each generation should leave the fewest descendants is a serious thing; for all the recent work in anthropology teaches the importance of heredity, and tends to prove Galton's theory that genius is inherited." From a study of the one thousand most eminent men of history, but for whom "the world would have made little progress in learning, invention or wealth," Processor Cattell concludes that "heredity, including in that term both stability and variability of stock, is more potent than social tradition or physical environment." From a study of European royal genealogies, it is deduced by Dr. F. A. Woods, of Harvard, that "heredity has exercised in mental life a factor not far from nine-tenths, while from the moral side something over one-half."

Without placing implicit faith in such numerical estimates, and without pausing to inquire how one might best "exercise a factor", the reader will note the admitted dominance of heredity over all other forces. It will be observed that the deductions of Dr. Woods refer to the "mental life" and the "moral side" in general, and not merely to extraordinary manifestations or "genius," as in "Galton's theory". Surely there is little enough of the latter to be found in "all the royal families of Europe", and quite sufficient of something else. Besides, it seems clear that if genius be inherited, if marked deviations from the average in this direction or in that be transmitted, then a fortiori must also the general average character be itself in detail determined by inheritance. For every example of "inherited genius" there lie close at hand, under common and immediate observation, a thousand examples of inheritance of qualities physical, mental, and moral that fall within the bounds of the normal. Such qualities have beneath them a far solider substructure of age, a far more settled and less mutable organic habit of centuries, than do the new growths, the spontaneous mutations, that we call genius, or any marked eccentricity. If, then, the latter be inherited, far more so the former. And such is precisely the foundation on which the whole fabric of the foregoing argument has been reared.

Let the reader observe that the question, the only real question, regards the "mental gap" between the Negro and the Caucasian, for which we dare not substitute "between savage and civilized man". This matter is entirely another and entirely irrelevant. The "difference of mental capacity" between the savage Greek and the civilized Egyptian was indeed great, but was in favour of the savage youth and against the civilized ancient. So, too, the savage Teuton fully equalled or excelled in mental capacity his civilized Italian foeman. The defects of these savages were cultural, not mental proper, and culture was enough speedily to supply them. But where, we ask again, have real "mental gaps" been filled up by culture? Where have racial characteristics been transformed or abolished? Have equal opportunities raised the 150,000 Negroes in Pennsylvania to the white level? Or the 100,000 in New York? Or those in New England? Or in Chatham, Ontario? Or in Paris? When Greek culture led captive the Roman captor, did it arm him with Greek genius? Did it close up the "mental gap"? When the bow of Hellenic science fell into the hands of the Arab, was he quite able to bend it?

We recall our anthropologic and ethnologic disputants to the ridge of war, and ask, Do they really believe that the difference between the Niger and the Euphrates was one of "experience and training"? If so, pray tell us how many more years had the Sumerians lived seventy centuries ago than the citizens of Dahomey up to now? Did the former enjoy, like the latter, a contact for centuries with American missionaries and European civilization? And whence came the "experience and training" of Hammurabi and Sin-mubalit and their ancestors? Who trained their trainers? If indeed "it is a question of mental contents rather than of mental capacities," whence, we insist, came those "mental contents"? Did they fall out of the sky into the empty skulls of Nineveh? Why, then, did this meteoric shower powder Mesopotamia so densely and sprinkle a dust so impalpable over the Sudan? "Mental contents rather than mental capacities"? True, the word "capacities" is unluckily chosen; "faculties" would have been better, but, even as it stands, there was never a more manifest inversion of the truth. We have taught for a score of years and every year we see more clearly that the teacher is helpful mainly to the favoured few that do not need him. We appeal to the whole tribe of teachers, from Dan to Beersheba—what one has ever supplied "mental contents" in the absence of "mental capacities"? This is preëminently the age of education. Its agencies are all-embracing and bewildering in their complexity and universality. Everything is taught and everything is studied in the most thoroughgoing fashion, from the cedar of Lebanon to the hyssop on the wall. If it be merely or mainly a question of "experience and training" and "mental contents," surely we have distanced our ancestors immensely;—we are altogether "out of sight". Genius should run riot on our streets. Homers, Platos and Euclids, Cæsars, Shakesperes and Newtons, Goethes and Kants, Pascals, Dantes and Titians, should be as plenty as blackberries. And yet such is not very notably the case. There is still some room at the top. The supply of abilities of the very highest order is nowhere markedly in excess of the demand.

Will anyone contend that "experience and training" and subcranial injection of "mental contents" have ever been able to close up the "mental gap" between individuals of the same race, or even of the same family? Why, then, imagine that they may close up the far wider gap between individuals of different races—between the races themselves? This doctrine of the all-sufficiency of "experience and training" and "mental contents" assumes, in fact, the proportions of an overgrown ironical joke and would grace the vacuous columns of Judge far better than the sober-minded pages of Anthropology. As a child we have sometimes wondered why the eagle should so far outfly the turkey-gobbler; it seems the mystery is now clearly resolved—the eagle has doubtless had more "experience and training".

We sometimes see it attempted to strengthen the plea for the essential equality of the Negro by reference to the Japanese, who are declared not inferior, though "they would have been called an inferior, a hopelessly submerged race, half a century ago. But they have made a sudden change. This has been no slow Darwinian development, but a per saltum evolution of a new intellectual type—if we may not rather call it a spring blossoming out of ages of winter. There is now every appearance that a similar efflorescence is coming with the negro race—only they have begun with utter ignorance and slavery, and have more to learn, and find less encouragement". Now, in this notion of "efflorescence" there is an element of truth. There are bloom-periods in the life of the race, as of trees and of men. We speak of the Periclean, the Augustan, the Elizabethan age. "For greater dooms do greater doles obtain," [19] was said in the ancient mystery. "Spirits are not finely touch'd but to fine issues". Extraordinary junctures and crises in the life of the individual and of the race may rouse slumbering powers into vehement activity. But that such admitted facts will bear the weight of inference thrown upon them, we must stoutly deny. The thorn and the thistle may indeed bloom and fructify, but they will not bear grapes or figs. They will bring forth fruit after their kind. Greeks were Greeks before Marathon or Salamis, before even Homer or Agamemnon. Witness the outburst of Arabic genius after Mohammed! Yet Bagdad and Granada could never become like unto Athens or Alexandria. But why multiply illustrations? Efflorescence is one thing, transmutation is another. "We seem to see such a paroxysmal impulse now taking possession of the negro race in this country"! We gravely doubt this "sudden start upward"; we strongly suspect things are not what they seem. We label all such statements "important, if true". [20]

The illustration from the Orient will not serve its purpose. We by no means admit that Japan does yet "take a front rank among the strong and intellectual nations of the world". One swallow does not make it spring. We are used to parallels between Sophocles and Ibsen. A Harvard junior declared Demosthenes to be the Edward Everett of Greece. But in any case it is not true that "they have made a sudden change". It was only gross ignorance that would have called them "hopelessly submerged half a century ago". They were then, even as they are now and as they were hundreds of years before, an artistic, ingenious, enterprising people, with a well-developed culture—language, literature, religion, social and civic and military life. [21] Contact with Western civilization has indeed aroused them and spurred their ambition, and turned their ancient powers into modern channels; but we can by no means say it has really augmented those powers or begotten any new ones. It is far from clear that this contact will prove ultimately beneficial. The Oriental grain is not improved to every eye by a cheap veneering of Occidental science and commercialism. We have read of a boy who was gilded from head to foot, to represent an angel at a church festival. The experiment was eminently successful: it turned him not only into an apparent angel, but also into a real one. A similar result may be anticipated as the ultimate issue of all attempts, however well-meant, to engraft alien civilization upon the really backward races of mankind. They will finally be civilized off the face of the earth, or at least from all regions habitable and healthful for the civilizing race.

It seems to be of interest, however, and the dictate of fairness, to recall that, according to a very high and recent, though perhaps not infallible, authority (Professor Ripley), the roots of the great European race-tree are two: [22] the broad-headed Kelt from Asia and the long-headed Teuton from Africa. If so, then this latter stock, though now the fairest among the sons of men,

Then, sad relief, from the bleak shore that hears

The German Ocean roar, deep blooming, strong,

And yellow-haired the blue-eyed Saxon came—

was once the very darkest! What combined agencies, as of climate and selection, have wrought out this marvellous depigmentation, we need not here inquire. Suffice it that, on the one hand, this fact, if it be a fact,—non nobis est componere tantas lites—would seem to ground the bare possibility that even now such combined agencies might in the same lapse of time bring about a similar transfiguration of the West African. And this we readily grant—if the physiologic nature of the Negro be as plastic now as it was a hundred thousand years ago—which we cannot disprove, but which we have no right to assume. Be this as it may, we have never denied this or any other abstract possibility of negritic evolution. We merely maintain that probability is the guide of life, and that there is no appreciable probability of any such evolution.

On the other hand, if the bright-haired children of the snow and foam be really sprung from such sable prognathous ancestors, then their divergence from the ancestral type most certainly began untold millenniums ago, and the present organic departure from that type is measured, as it were, by the measureless chasm of years that divides them from their African forebears. Now, if nature and the tide of time have spent such centuries of centuries in chiseling out this chasm, how infinitely preposterous to suppose that man can close it up in a generation with the filmy webs of common culture and social equality and civil rights and partisan legislation and caricatured religion and the political spoils of the country post-office! As well expect to rise from the floor to the roof without ever traversing the intervening space.




Who aught adjudges ere both sides are heard,

Just though his judgement, is himself unjust.


By far the ablest plea yet made for the "backward races" is to be found in the address of Dr. Franz Boas on Human Faculty as Determined by Race, published (at least, printed) in the Proceedings of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1894. This distinguished anthropologist, now of Columbia University, New York City, speaks from the pinnacles of science, and his words must not go unregarded. We shall notice every salient point in his twenty-six pages, and shall quote him verbatim as far as possible. Such a formal defence seems to call for an equally formal rejoinder.

He objects to the argument from the superiority of the White civilization to the superiority of the White race as involving two errors: (a) "the achievement and the aptitude for an achievement have been confounded", (b) "every deviation from the white type is considered a characteristic feature of a lower type" (p. 302). It is declared that "these two errors underlie our judgments of races;" but why and whether they are really errors, or in what measure, here at least no attempt is made to show. This will not do. Such plausible assumptions are neither disproved nor discredited by merely labeling them "errors." However, there follows: "It might be objected that although achievement is not necessarily a measure of aptitude, it seems admissible to judge the one by the other" (pp. 302-3). But why "objected"? Has any reason been opposed against which one could "object"? None whatever. We do object very seriously to the implication that already there has been advanced some argument. The word "objected" should be changed to "argued."

Hear now the answer to this "objection." "It seems desirable to enter into these questions somewhat fully. Let our mind go back a few thousand years until it reaches the time when the civilizations of eastern and of western Asia were in their infancy. As time passed on, these civilizations were transferred from one people to another, some of those who had represented the highest type of culture sinking back into obscurity, while others took their places. During the dawn of history, we see civilization clinging to certain districts, in which it is taken up now by one people, now by the other. In the numerous conflicts of these times the more civilized people were often vanquished. The conqueror, however, learned the arts of life from the conquered and carried on the work of civilization. Thus the centres of civilization were shifting to and fro over a limited area and progress was slow and often interrupted. At the same period the ancestors of the races, who are now among the most highly civilized, were in no [?] way superior to primitive man as we find him now in regions that have not come into contact with modern civilization.

Was the culture attained by the ancient civilized people of such character as to allow us to claim for them a genius superior to that of any other race?"

Such is not the question; it is not about "any other race," but about the present backward races—African especially and Australian. It should have been said, "Was Greek civilization such as to indicate that the Athenian was superior to the Senegambian or the Hottentot?" Will any one hesitate for an answer?

"First of all, we must bear in mind that none of these civilizations was the product of the genius of a single people."

Here the cards are conveniently shuffled and the terms changed from "race" to "people." The question, however, is not about "peoples" proper, but about "races." While notable differences hold among "peoples" of the same "race," yet the one race it is, the Caucasian, that is held to be superior. This one race has produced all the civilizations in question; the Mongol comes next, at a far remove. And of Caucasians, the Aryan shines like the moon amid the stars.

"Ideas and inventions were carried from one to the other; and, although intercommunication was slow, each people which participated in the ancient civilization added to the culture of the others. Proofs without number have been forth-coming which show that ideas have been disseminated as long as people have come into contact with each other and that neither race nor language nor distance limits their diffusion. As all have worked together in the development of the ancient civilizations, we must bow to the genius of all, whatever race they may represent: Hamitic, Semitic, Aryan or Mongol."

But to all in equal measure? Or to some in far higher measure? That is the question. We must not think of the Senate, where all states vote alike; but of the House of Representatives, where "Little Rhody" vanishes by the side of New York or Texas. Even if all races did contribute to the sum total, which is far from true, there is an immense difference between contributions that may vary from a penny to a pound. The English language "bows to the genius" of all, from the Teuton to the Mongol; but the former element is vital, the latter is inappreciable.

We have quoted these paragraphs in full and for several reasons: We would represent our opponent as correctly as possible; they are a fair sample of his argumentation; and, especially, as argument they are to us incomprehensible—hence we would not attempt to condense them. Possibly our readers may understand them better. So far as we can make out, the savant has deceived himself by conjuring with the words "people" and "race." The question was, whether the Caucasian, "the white race," the great civilization-building race, in any or in all of its "peoples," is superior to the "races" African, Australian, and the like, that have produced no civilizations? If not, "why, then, did the white race alone develop a civilization which is sweeping the whole world, etc.?" To this, his own question, these paragraphs contain no element of answer, much less answer itself. They seem to forget all about "races," and turn aside to slightly varying "peoples" of the same "white race." They ask (in effect): Does the civilization of the Greek indicate that he was superior to the West African? And they reply (in effect) that the Hellenic culture was very composite—part Doric, part Æolic, part Ionian, with a sprinkling from the Nile and the Euphrates. Surely this is not argument; it is hardly the simulacrum of argument. Such a mingling of bloods of varying virtues and tendencies is now actually going on in our midst; but they are all of the same "white race," neither physiologically nor psychologically very far apart; and such a mingling may very well make for higher evolution. When it is affirmed that our "ancestors" "were in no way superior to Hottentots and Guinea Negroes" (the long phrase is a mere euphemism) "at the same period," "during the dawn of history," we protest earnestly. The affirmation assumes everything in dispute. The evidence is all against it. Their language, their mythology, the fact that they were of the White race which "did alone develop a civilization," the fact that they took fire immediately when touched by the torch of culture, their bodies and particularly their skulls—all cry aloud against this complacent assumption. More than a "few thousand years" ago the Sumerians had observed the precession of the equinoxes; at "the dawn of history" in Germany, Augustus cried vainly to Varus, "Give me back my legions." Arminius in no way superior to a Sudanese! The Babylonian legislators and astronomers "in no way superior" to the cannibals of the Niger!

"Did no other races develop a culture of equal value?" (p. 304). He shrinks from a positive yea or nay, but holds "that the civilizations of ancient Peru and of Central America may well be compared with the ancient civilization of the Old World," "that the general status of their culture was nearly equally high." Herewith this great savant seems to place himself beyond the pale of argument. Does any one believe that Greek or Roman civilization would have gone down without a blow at the mere breath of Pizarro or Cortés? And where are the Peruvian or Aztec Homer and Thales, Apelles and Euclid, Cicero, Vergil, and Trajan? On this there is no need to dwell longer.

"What then is the difference between the civilization of the Old World and that of the New World? It is only a difference in time. The one reached a certain stage three thousand or four thousand years sooner than the other" (p. 304).

This is mere assertion. There is not the shadow of evidence that the Peruvian or Mexican would ever have approached the Greco-Roman civilization, either in four thousand or in forty thousand years. What has been done in the last four hundred years, under the stimulus of Spanish contact? We cannot have the slightest interest, logical, sentimental, or other, in depreciating or in anywise underrating the New World civilizations. For how could it possibly affect the question of Caucasian and Negro, even if it were found that the bud of Cuzco and Anahuac was fairer than the flower of Rome or Athens? And why might it not have been? We are very far from regarding either Aristides or Marcus Aurelius as perfect. It is only as a mere matter of fact that we call the American superiority or equality so seriously in question. Admire as you will, appraise as high as you will, the art and the astronomy of Tezcuco, the social organization, the agriculture, and the engineering of the amautas, it seems impossible even for the enthusiasm of a Carli, combined with the race pride of an Ixtlilxochitl and a Garcilaso, to discover in the culture of the Yncas or of the Aztecs or even of the Toltecs any principle or augury of progress. To us it is difficult in the extreme to detect any hope of higher development where despotism was absolute, where free agency was outlawed, and where the object of war was to procure human sacrifices. We hold that by every token these civilizations had culminated, that they were already as elaborated and petrified as the Chinese, and that the centuries to come would have witnessed no marked advance, but rather a retrogression. It should be added that the physical inferiority of these peoples was notable. The Peruvian and Aztec stature ranged from five feet to five and one-half feet. Now this is very close to the border line of the Dwarfs—who, according to Sir William Flower, include such races as do not exceed five feet three inches. The Ynca skull is better than others of South America, yet it has but a low facial angle.

Dr. Boas thinks four thousand years but a trifle in the history of a race—but a watch in the night. Perhaps it is. He thinks the mere fact that a race is forty centuries behind does not argue that it is less gifted. May be not. We have often wondered whether the bee might not yet overtake the man. Theoretically all forms of life are still in the race, which cannot end while the planet is habitable. Practically, however, four thousand years is eternity. A race that is more than a hundred generations behind is not worth considering. The reflections in the paragraph under consideration all strike wide of the mark.

It is next urged (p. 304) "that civilization originated among few of its [the White race's] members," and "that the cognate tribes" might not have developed so swiftly but for help from the others. True, the Germans (e.g.) profited greatly from contact with Greco-Romans, but for whom they might now be savages. But they profited because they were of the same stock; they were of nature to profit. The Greek applied the torch, but the German material was inflammable; else it would never have burned. When the same torch has been applied to other materials, they have not caught fire.

The next paragraph (p. 305) itself raises these questions: "But why did these tribes so easily assimilate the culture that was offered them, while at present we see primitive people dwindle away and become degraded before the approach of civilization, instead of being elevated by it? Is not this a proof of a higher organization of the inhabitants of Europe?" We have just rendered answer simple, natural, satisfactory. But none such can be accepted! "I believe the reasons for this fact are not far to seek and do not necessarily lie in a greater ability of the races of Europe and Asia. First of all, these people were alike in appearance to civilized man of their times."

What perverse ingenuity! Likeness in appearance was a reason, but likeness in reality—in blood, in brain, in nature, in origin—this was no reason! Penny wise, pound foolish. Now the fact is that the likeness in reality was far stronger than in appearance.

"Therefore the fundamental difficulty for the rise of primitive people, namely, that an individual which has risen to the level of the higher civilization is still looked upon as belonging to an inferior race, did not prevail."

Here again there is quietly assumed everything in dispute. We deny outright that such is "the fundamental difficulty." In a measure it has no existence at all, annulled by the prevalent doctrine of the equality of all men. In wide circles these superior "primitives" (i.e., Negroes) are petted and flattered and extraordinarily favoured. No proof of the assertion in question is so much as hinted.

"Thus it was possible that, in the colonies of ancient times, society could grow by accretion from among the more primitive people. Furthermore, the devastating influences of diseases which nowadays begin to ravage the inhabitants of territories newly opened to the whites were not so strong on account of the permanent contiguity of the people of the Old World who were always in contact with each other and therefore subject to the same influences. The invasion of America and Polynesia, on the other hand, was accompanied by the introduction of new diseases among the natives of these countries. The suffering and devastation wrought by epidemics which followed the discovery are too well known to be described in full."

True, but most inadequate; for why did not the contact with the new peoples affect the invaders as well as the invaded with new diseases? Especially, why did these invaders not yield to the new local or climatic distempers to which the invaded had long since become measurably immune? The near-lying fact that the invaders were stronger, more viable, more resistant to disease, in every way more vigorous—the very fact that made them invaders—this all-important fact has been entirely overlooked.

"In addition to this it may be said that the contrast between the culture represented by the modern white and that of primitive man is far more fundamental than that between the ancients and the people with whom they come in contact. Particularly, the methods of manufacture have developed so enormously that the industries of the primitive peoples of our times are exterminated by the cheapness and large quantity of the products imported by the white trader; because primitive man is unable to compete with the power of production of the machines of the whites, while in olden times the superior hand product rivalled with a hand product of a lower type."

To what uses may not the doctrine of Protection be turned! For a generation we were taught that it was necessary to protect by a high tariff the machine products of the United States against the competition of the hand products of the Old World; now we are told that not only has the competition of the machine products "exterminated" the hand industries, but it has even prevented the "primitive" from learning the new "methods of manufacture" and so becoming civilized and saving himself from extermination! The reader may be safely left to perceive the irrelevance and the emptiness of such "may-be-saids." Let him further reflect that the great bulk of this extermination, begun in America nearly four hundred years ago, was accomplished in three hundred years, before the modern era of machine products. To attribute the disappearance of the Indian to the overthrow of his industries by the competition of cheap calicoes and wooden nutmegs sounds more like jest than earnest. Why, the curiosity of the "invaders" actually supplied and still supplies a new market for the aboriginal wares.

The next remark, "that in several regions, particularly in America and in parts of Siberia, the primitive tribes are swamped by the numbers of the immigrating race," seems hardly worth quoting in full. But from all of this it is concluded (p. 306) "that the conditions for assimilation in ancient Europe were much more favorable" than where modern civilization has overtaken the "primitives," and that therefore there is no "need to assume that the ancient Europeans were more gifted than other races" that disappear before modern civilization. The reader must see that, even if there were granted everything claimed for these reasons, the question as to the fact of European superiority would not be touched.

For corroboration, appeal is made (p. 306) to the Arabs and the Sudanese. In the second half of the eighth century, the Sudan was invaded by "Hamitic tribes" and "Mohammedanism." "Large empires" came and went "in struggles with neighboring states," and "a relatively high degree of culture has been attained." The invaders intermarried with the natives, and the mixed races, some of which are almost purely negro, have risen high above the level of other African negroes." We submit that such "corroboration" is little stronger than weakness itself. "Relatively high culture" is too vague a term to argue with, and a thousand years of such history "of north Africa" is not worth a brief generation of European history. If the infusion of "Hamitic" blood and civilization has appreciably helped the Sudanese, we are not surprised; but who will infer from that fact that these infusers are not superior?

"Why, then, have the Mohammedans been able to civilize these tribes and to raise them to nearly the same standard which they had attained, while the whites have not been capable of influencing the negro in Africa to any considerable extent?" Mark you, the word "nearly"—a bridge broad enough to span the straits of Gibraltar, the chasm between Bagdad or Granada and Dahomey, between Averroës and the Mad Mullah. Some would, perhaps, hold that in the United States the Negro has attained "nearly" to the Caucasian level. But since it was at best only "nearly" and not quite, it follows that the mixture of Hamite and Negro did, after all, work a debasement of the former. And how was this possible, if the latter was not inferior?

"Evidently, on account of the different method of introduction of culture. While the Mohammedans influence the people in the same manner in which the ancients civilized the tribes of Europe, the whites send only the products of their manufactures and a few of their representatives into the negro country. A real amalgamation between the higher types of the whites and the negroes has never taken place. The amalgamation of the negroes by the Mohammedans is facilitated particularly by the institution of polygamy, the conquerors taking native wives and raising their children as members of their own family."

Such is the programme for "influencing" the Negro! Such is the way to introduce "culture," whereby, in a thousand years, the "mixed race" may "nearly" attain the present Caucasian standard! That is, the only successful "method of introduction of culture" is to introduce blood, to introduce a new stock, a new germinal principle. Then comes a race of mongrels, of average mental powers higher than the lower breed, with exceptions little lower than the higher. Since the forms of civilization are easily imposed on inferior breeds, the resulting mongrels do what one may be pleased to call "nearly attaining" to the standard of the higher. Bear witness the West Indies, and Mexico, and Central and South America. What interest has any one in contesting such statements? To our mind they give away the case entirely; out of their own mouths such speakers are unappealably condemned. Bornu [23] and Haiti may have attractions for some; but for us, none whatever.

"When, finally, we consider the inferior position held by the negro race of the United States, who are in the closest contact with modern civilization, we must not forget that the old race-feeling of the inferiority of the colored race is as potent as ever and is a formidable obstacle to its advance and progress, notwithstanding that schools and universities are open to them. We might rather wonder how much has been accomplished in a short period against heavy odds. It is hardly possible to say what would become of the negro if he were able to live with the whites on absolutely equal terms" (p. 307).

Such is the pathetic plea for the absolute equality in our American life of Black and White. We do not deny that there is a certain force in such words. To us the Negro seems handicapped with an undeniable inferiority, which, particularly in the commercial world, accumulates rapidly against him, as it were, at compound interest. And this is the seventh seal of his doom. But in science, in literature, in art, he receives all encouragement; his work is at an absurd premium. Take one illustration, instar omnium. In the advertisement of "Volumes by Paul Lawrence Dunbar," in "The Uncalled," his own publishers speak thus: "A poet who starts out by being handicapped by excessive praise suffers from it for a long time.... Just because he [Dunbar] happened to be a Negro, a vast amount of adulation was heaped upon him." Precisely the opposite of the picture drawn above! Compare, also, the history of the Negroes of Chatham, Ontario, and of other such early colonies. That they no longer meet with such extraordinary favour in the North is largely due to the fact that they have uniformly, when in numbers, sadly disappointed the hopes of their benefactors and well-wishers. It seems plain, moreover, that a really strong and highly endowed blood would triumph with equal ease over excessive favour and over unjust disfavour. Would any such discrimination keep down the Anglo-Saxon? Would he not "make by force his merit known"? And have twenty centuries of race prejudice and outrageous persecution availed to repress or depress the all-victorious sons of Israel? The generous explanation just offered must be rejected as utterly inadequate.

Hence it is concluded (p. 307) that "no great weight can be attributed to the earlier rise of civilization in the Old World which is satisfactorily explained as a chance. In short, historical events appear to have been much more potent in leading races to civilization than their faculty, and it follows that achievements of races do not warrant us to assume that one race is more highly gifted than the other."

We submit that there has not been offered, for these conclusions, any semblance of proof whatever. Let our readers judge;—we have quoted very fully. Notice, moreover, the phrase "earlier rise of civilization in the Old World." But who knows that it rose earlier in the Old World? Or who cares? Who argues therefrom? The point is, that it rose higher, immeasurably higher, in the Old World; but this, the kernel, is not mentioned. All this was mere "chance"! Yes, perhaps; in the same sense that the higher rise of the Himalayas than of the Andes was mere "chance"; that the richer fauna and flora of the Old World were mere "chance"; that the greater energy and stature and cranial capacity of the Aryan were mere "chance"; in the same sense that everything in Euclidean space is a mere "chance". In order to justify any assertion, it will suffice to enlarge sufficiently the meaning of your terms. But we do not think that the cause of truth is prospered by such methods.

Some one may ask, however, is there not some grain of correctness in this contention that capacity cannot always be measured by achievement? We grant it cheerfully, and we applaud our opponent and his school for calling this connection in question, and bidding the current assumption answer for itself. We, too, would "test all things," but we would also "hold fast the good." The savant has been unscientific in his procedure; he has gone too far; he has thrown out the baby with the bath. He has neglected the central principles of the doctrine of probability. If there be two members of two families, and one succeeds greatly in life, along this path and that, while the other fails here, there, everywhere, we are strongly tempted to ascribe higher faculty to the one than to the other. Yet we may very well be wrong. The latter might put up a plausible defence. He might reason as this school has done. He might say that the game was called too soon, that various circumstances continually favoured his rival, that in a perfectly fair field he would have shown himself at least equal. All, then, that we could say would be, that the Inverse Probability was somewhat against him. His failure is a fact: it may have been due to lower faculty, it may have been due to something else; but it stands against him, and it raises a certain probability of inferiority. No such failure stands against the other. No such probability of inferior faculty is suggested, though it remains barely possible that he was really inferior.

But now, suppose there are a million or a trillion in each of the two families; and of these the one trillion attain varying but splendid success along every line of endeavour, while the other trillion fail, more or less completely, along the same lines. What, then, shall we say? What, then, must we say? Unhesitatingly, that there must have been a very decided difference of average faculty. While we might admit the measurable possibility that chance and time and circumstance played a conspicuous and even a determining part in the fortunes of the one pair, yet we could by no means admit the like for any great number of pairs; and when the number of pairs becomes enormously great, the possibility in question becomes vanishingly small—too small to be dealt with in any system of our thought. Here is the given effect: success of the one class, failure of the other. What the cause? Is it mainly, at least, an (average) uniform difference of faculty? This cause is simple and intelligible and self-repeating; if it worked in one case, it would work in all cases and explain everything as easily as any one thing. But the other cause, the conspiracy of chance and time and circumstance, is not self-repeating, and however great the likelihood of a single such chance combination, the likelihood of innumerable such repetitions is inexpressibly small—on the same principle that the chance of throwing heads once is one-half, but the chance of throwing them consecutively twice is only one-fourth, and thrice is only one-eighth, and so on. We need not parade here the mathematical formulæ for the reckoning of the so-called inverse probability of each of these two hypotheses. Common sense tells us at once that the difference of faculty is practically certain, the chance-effect or coincidence-effect is practically impossible.

Now, such is the case really presented. On the one side, the generations of generations of Caucasians; all have distinguished themselves by high and varied achievements along every line of activity yet opened up to man. On the other hand, the primitives—the backward races of Australia, particularly of Africa; they seem scarcely yet quite conscious. Not one has done anything historical. The failure is complete and universal. That this uniform and immense diversity is a mere accident, the age-long result of a fortuitous concourse of circumstances, or ascriptible to any such trivialities as those enumerated, is almost incalculably improbable, except we expand the term accident to include the laws of gravitation and the conservation of energy. We might as well say that the different behaviours of two bodies of oxygen and hydrogen were to be "explained as a chance," and did not argue any greater mass in the average molecule of the former.

This conclusion would hold, even if the higher faculty of the Caucasian were antecedently extremely improbable; the a priori unlikelihood would become a posteriori, in view of the facts of history, a practical certainty. However, the case is immeasurably stronger. For a difference in faculty, not merely in kind, but also in degree of faculty, is not only not improbable a priori—it is probable almost to certainty. All nature around us is one endless spectacle of such diversities. Equality is absolutely unknown. This observation is altogether too trite to dwell on. Will any one deny that the degrees of faculty are often inexpressibly apart in members of the same family? Did any amount of opportunity serve to raise any other member of the Bonaparte family quite to the level of the first Napoleon? If, then, such inherent disparities in individuals be undeniable, is parity among tribes or races to be expected? Is it not, in fact, antecedently incredible? To us it seems no more unlikely that one race should be superior to another than that one man should be taller, or one mountain range higher, or one ocean deeper, than another. The question of equality or inequality between two races of men is a mere question of present facts, to be settled without any bias, now and here, precisely as you would settle the like question between the Numidian lion and the Colorado cougar. And when some one pleads for the backward "primitives" that they need only a little more time, a few millenniums, we answer once more: Very possibly; but time may be all that the jaguar needs to surpass the tiger, or the ant to rival the eagle.

So much, then, for the historical argument. As already brought forward in our Chapter Two, it is shaken by the scruples presented even as an oak is shaken by a zephyr.

Let us now pass to the anatomical argument (p. 308). "There is no doubt that great differences exist in the physical characteristics of the races of man." But these cannot, of themselves, decide the question of superiority. While skin, hair, lips, and nose "distinguish the African negro clearly," yet Americans (aboriginal) have occasionally skin, lips, nose, but not hair, mistakable "for those of a negro." In general, variations in any race over-lap variations in another, showing that "existing differences are not fundamental" (whatever that may mean). It is held that the varying proportions of the body may be rather cultural than racial, like the differences between wild and domesticated animals (Fritsch). "The differences which cannot be explained by functional causes are few in number and they are not of such a character as to stamp one race as lower than the other." Conceded. But notice here the logical process. Whatever can be explained functionally "must" be explained functionally; a functional cause that is possible is held to be ipso facto certain; racial causes are antecedently so extremely improbable as to be admissible only under extreme compulsion. Now this is altogether vicious. The case is just the reverse. It is the functional causes that are pressed into service, that remain mere possibilities. Even at the utmost they refuse to explain all the differences. Some "few" are admitted to be racial. But, as some are certainly racial, then all or at least most may be racial, the invocation of supposed functional causes becomes unnecessary, and the cultural explanation improbable. We may apply the razor of Occam: Entia non multiplicanda sunt præter necessitatem.

We pass now to theromorphisms among the lower races (p. 310). For example, in man the temporal and frontal bones are separated by the sphenoid and parietal, but in the ape the temporal encroaches on the second pair and meets the frontal. This simian formation is found occasionally among all races, but "more frequently among primitive people." However, it is thought "probably" due to "malnutrition in early infancy," and to be no indication of closer kinship to the ape.

There follow (p. 310) some half dozen other variations, long thought to be characteristic, that "occur all over the world,"—"but the degree of variability is not everywhere the same." "Presumably such variations" "have not yet" "become stable," but are "still in process of evolution." "It might seem," then, that the races in which they "are more stable" are "more highly organized." It is said that "this would refer, however, only to such features as are not caused by the influence of environment." Moreover, "it may be that the greater variability of certain races, in regard to these phenomena, is not an expression of a lower degree of development of the whole group, but of the presence of a great number of members of a family which possessed the peculiar character".

It is needless to contest or criticise such ingenious maybes. It is enough to note, once again, the logic. It is not denied that prima facie all these phenomena suggest and indicate lower development; it is merely sought to avert the indication by devising an hypothesis to account for each fact some other way. In place of the one supposition of lower development, there is put a whole series of independent suppositions. In order to avail for the purpose, all of these must hit true at the same time; if each were as likely as not, having a probability of one-half, the chance that five such shall hit true simultaneously is only the fifth power of one-half—that is, one thirty-second. This rapid diminution of the chance of all being correct is wholly overlooked in such argumentation.

Regard is now turned (p. 311) upon the cranial features: "While the consideration of the characters treated heretofore has not given any conclusive evidence of the superiority of certain races, the study of the form and size of the head seems to promise better results."

Note here the word "conclusive"; clearly, it is admitted that these characters furnish some evidence of the "superiority" claimed, but denied that it is "conclusive." But who ever held that such evidence was "conclusive"? There is no single variety of evidence in the case that is or can be "conclusive." The evidence is cumulative its conclusiveness is found in its mass, in the concurrence of all its disconnected indications. This is the decisive aspect of the whole matter, and of this there is betrayed no consciousness.

Relatively "to the skull, the face of the negro is larger than that of the American, whose face is, in turn, larger than that of the white. The lower portion of the face assumes larger dimensions. The alveolar arch is pushed forward and thus gains an appearance which reminds us of the higher apes. There is no denying that this feature is a most constant character of the black races and that it represents a type slightly nearer the animal than the European type. The same may be said of the broadness and flatness of the nose of the negro and of the Mongol; but here again we must call to mind that prognathism and low, broad noses are not entirely absent among the white races [neither are idiots and all sorts of reversions to older types], although the more strongly developed forms which are found among the negroes do not occur. The variations belonging to both races overlap. We find here at least a few indications which tend to show that the white race differs more from the higher apes than [does] the negro. But does this anatomical difference prove that their mental capacity is lower than that of the white? The probability that this may be the case is suggested by the anatomical facts, but they by themselves are no proof that this is the case."

True; but they are not "by themselves." They are in goodly company with a long series of facts already mentioned, with a still longer series immediately to come, and with a wholly overwhelming confirmative history of ten thousand years. It is idle, then, to say "they by themselves are no proof." The question is, Are they, in their own anatomical and historical connection, any proof? It is impossible not to answer, Yes. They are the very strongest proof.

Promising "to revert to this subject later on," the savant passes over (p. 312) to the important matter of arrested development. Among such phenomena may be noted that the noses of children are more alike than those of adults. The Mongol nose changes less during adolescence than the White. According to Quatrefages, the Negro basin differs less from fœtal forms and resembles more the ape form than that of other races. All of which points to relative lowness of developmental type. "On the other hand, the face of the negro child is less prognathous than that of the adult. In this case we find that the more energetic development tends to produce a type which is apparently lower than that of the white. We may even go a step farther and say that the ontogenetic development of the higher apes and of man is such that the young forms are more alike than the old ones. While in man the face develops moderately only, it grows considerably among the apes. The earlier arrest in this case is, therefore, an indication of higher type. Thus it will be seen that it is not the earlier arrest alone which determines the place of a race, but the direction of this development." Hence he refuses to draw a conclusion against the Mongol, but says nothing more of the Negro. The argument of Dr. Boas, at this point, seems strangely vague and irresolute. It seems hardly possible to join direct issue. But this fact appears noteworthy: The ape face grows more than the human; also the Negro face grows decidedly more than the White—at least relatively to the head, since the adult is more prognathous than the child; this "more energetic development" relates, then, the Negro to the ape more nearly than the White man.

The general reply that is made (p. 313) to the argument from arrested development is that the female sex is in all proportions more like the child than the male, "but who would explain this earlier arrest of development of women as mark of a lower type?" We let this go for what it is worth, merely remarking that it is thoroughly invalidated by the remark on page 315 (quoted at p. 144).

With page 313 we pass to the question of the length of time during which certain organs grow, especially the brain. "If we could prove that the brain of certain races ceases to develop at an earlier period than that of others, the inference of the inferiority of race would seem highly probable." Now, this is precisely what many naturalists of the first rank affirm is the case with the Negro. But it is here declared, "At the present time no satisfactory basis for such comparisons exists." Possibly;—we recognize the difficulties of the case: still, the returns thus far received, so far as they indicate anything at all, do indicate a much shorter period of development for the Negro (see p. 147).

The next question (p. 314) is the crucial one of brain-weights—"the one anatomical feature which bears directly upon the question at issue. It would seem that the greater the central nervous system, the higher the faculty of the race and the greater its aptitude to mental achievements.... There are sufficient data available to establish beyond a doubt the fact that the brain-weight of the whites is larger than of most other races, particularly larger than that of the negroes. That of the white male is about 1370 grammes. The investigations of cranial capacities are quite in accord with these results. According to Topinard, the capacity of the skull of males of the neolithic period of Europe is about 1560 cc.; that of modern Europeans is the same; of the Mongoloid race 1510 cc.; of African negroes 1405 cc., and of negroes of the Pacific ocean 1460 cc. Here we have, therefore, a decided difference in favor of the white race. These differences cannot be explained as the effect of difference in stature, the negroes being at least as tall as the Europeans."

"In interpreting these facts, we must ask, Does the increase in the size of the brain prove an increase in faculty? This would seem highly probable and facts may be adduced which speak in favor of this assumption." A number of these, familiar enough, are mentioned, and there follows: "While the force of these arguments must be admitted, a number of restricting facts must be enumerated. The most important among these is the difference in the brain-weight between men and women. When men and women of the same stature are compared it is found that the brain of the woman is much lighter than that of the man. Nevertheless, the faculty of woman is undoubtedly just as high as that of man. This is therefore a case in which smaller brain-weight is accompanied throughout by equal faculty. We conclude from this fact that it is not impossible that the smaller brains of males of other races should not (sic) do the same work that is done by the larger brain of the white race. But this comparison is not quite on equal terms, as we may assume that there is a certain structural difference between male and female which causes the difference in size between the sexes, so that comparison between male and female is not the same as a comparison between male and male. We will also remember that, although the brains of eminent men are, on the average, larger than those of the average individual, there are some small brains included in their number." We observe that, the sentence "But this comparison ..." (p. 315) so restricts the foregoing "most important restriction" as to deprive it of all the force it might otherwise have with some. As to eminent men having small brains, to be sure; but eminent men may have small minds also; very extraordinary special endowment does not by any means imply general endowment; not every genius is a good "all-around" man; even as physically some are strong in arm but weak in legs, strong in the chest but weak in the back, and so on. Besides, no one has ever held that mind-power is merely a matter of brain-weight. We hold only that, other things being equal, brain-weight is a fair index of mind-power. Perhaps in no two cases are the other things equal; but in the average of a large number of cases these inequalities are smoothed out; hence it is that we may rely upon the average with no little confidence.

"Notwithstanding these restrictions, the increase of the size of the brain in the higher animals, and the lack of development in microcephalic individuals are fundamental facts which make it more than probable that increased size of the brain causes increased faculty, although the relation is not quite as immediate as is often assumed."

We ask no greater concession.

It is next contended (p. 316) "that the average sizes of the brain of the White are numerously represented among other races". Middle-sized capacities (1450 to 1650 cc.) are found in 55 per cent. of Europeans, and in 58 per cent. of Africans and Melanesians; also 50 per cent. of Whites rise above 1550 (the mid-line), 27 per cent. of Africans, 32 per cent. of Melanesians. "We might, therefore, anticipate a lack of men of high genius, but should not anticipate any great lack of faculty among the great mass of negroes living among whites and enjoying the advantages of the leadership of the best men of that race."

These words seem to surrender everything. They admit a sensible inferiority of the Negro. This defect may be slight as expressed in ounces, and yet, as measured by achievement, it may be inexpressibly great. Nay, more! The admission goes much further still. The "anticipation" of no "great lack of faculty" is wholly unwarranted. We have no right to assume that medium skull-capacities among Africans imply the same medium faculties as would the same capacities among Europeans. By no means! Not unless the average brain-texture of the former be as fine-grained and highly organized as of the latter. But this is very improbable. With the difference in quantity will most likely be linked a far more significant difference in quality. So much is, in fact, admitted in the next paragraph, which merits special attention. This, however, is hardly the correct standpoint, as mental ability certainly does not depend upon the size of the brain alone. The proper point of view of the question is brought out most clearly by Dr. H. H. Donaldson whose opinion I will quote. He says, "I consider the significance of the encephalon to depend upon the number and size of the cells composing it. In the negroes and lower races generally, the number of cells is probably less than in the white. This is mainly an inference from the total weight of the encephalon. Equally important are the final stages in the enlargement of the structural elements, stages which apparently have the result of bringing a larger number of elements into physiological connections by means of a very slight quantitative extension of their branches. Changes, which moreover can be followed, say in the cortex of the brain of the white in individuals thirty or more years of age (sic). When we compare the capacity for education between the lower and higher races, we find that the great point of divergence is at adolescence and the inference is fairly good that we shall not find in the brains of the lower races the post-pubertal growth in the cortex to which I have just alluded. As to the sculpturing of the brain surface by gyri and sulci we still lack any good racial characters."

We have no occasion to take the slightest exception to this statement of Professor Donaldson's. But we are at a loss to perceive any support it gives to the general contention of this address, which, indeed, it seems to overturn completely. Observe especially that Donaldson recognizes unequivocally "the great point of divergence at adolescence" "in the capacity for education, between the lower and higher races." We may be allowed to add some later remarks of the Chicago authority, culled from his "The Growth of the Brain" (1895), which also fully sustain, incidentally, the theses of our earlier chapters.

"Statistically the results are satisfactory" (p. 114), being said of a table showing the inferior brain-weights of inferior races, indicates that Professor Donaldson recognizes that inferiority unreservedly.

"On neurological grounds, therefore, nurture is to be considered of much less importance than nature, and in that sense the capacities we most admire in persons worthy of remark are certainly inborn rather than made" (p. 344).

"Size, therefore, has a meaning; but it is by no means entitled to dominate the whole interpretation of the central system" (p. 352).

"No amount of education will cause enlargement or organization where the rough materials, the cells, are wanting; and, on the other hand, where these materials are present, they will in some degree become evident, whether purposely educated or not" (p. 355).

"Races which have progressed farthest in civilization are also those which possess a large brain-weight; but the converse of this proposition is by no means true, for the tables also show that there are races possessed of a large brain-weight and yet uncivilized" (p. 359).

Having now reviewed all pertinent anatomical differences, Dr. Boas declares (p. 317): "Our conclusion is, that there are differences between the physical characters of races which make it probable that there may be differences in faculty. No unquestionable fact, however, has been found yet which would prove beyond a doubt that it will be impossible for certain races to attain a higher civilization."

This conclusion is drawn so mildly that it seems hard to quarrel with it. But we must observe that it is not exactly a question of "higher civilization," but of the highest, as high as the Caucasian has attained or can attain: no one doubts that the Guinea Negro may be improved—he has been improved right here in the United States; the question is, can he keep pace with the White man? and everything thus far suggests, and almost compels, the answer, No! Again, it is not precisely a question of "impossibility" but of "improbability." All things are possible with God and even to the thought of man; but for the practical reason, the improbability here admitted is controlling. Once more, it is not by any means a matter of one "unquestionable fact;" such a single decisive indicium is nowhere easy to find and can seldom be demanded; it is the consensus of all the indications that is practically conclusive, and it is this consensus that has been so unfortunately disregarded.

The remaining ten pages of this address are devoted to "the psychological characteristics of primitive people." "This investigation is extremely difficult and unpromising"; nor do we think there can be much profit in following it up closely, since hardly anywhere is the ground traversed solid beneath the feet. The method employed is a continuation of that with which we are already familiar. One by one are taken up the counts of the indictment brought against the primitive mind by ethnologists, such as Wuttke, Klemm, Eichthal, De Gobineau, Nott and Gliddon. Thus, Wuttke and Klemm characterize the civilized races as active, all others as passive, and refer even American civilization to contact with some earlier form. Eichthal thinks of society as an organism, the White race representing the male, the Black the female, principle. De Gobineau designates the Yellow as the male, the Black as the female element, and admits only the White as noble and gifted. Nott and Gliddon ascribe only animal instincts to the lower races, but the civilizing instinct to the White only. All such schematism seems to us highly unscientific and is justly rejected. Tylor and Spencer analyze the primitive mind ingeniously, but do not assume that it is racially determined, though something of the kind seems implied in evolution. Waitz alone meets with sanction in declaring: "According to the current opinion the stage of culture of a people or of an individual is largely or exclusively a product of his faculty. We maintain that the reverse is at least just as true. The faculty of man does not designate anything but how much and what he is able to achieve in the immediate future and depends upon the stages of culture through which he has passed and the one he has reached." This is declared to be "the true point of view" and to be "expressed most happily." To us it seems far out of focus and expressed about as emptily and unhappily as possible. Certainly it is not the clearest thinking that regards a proposition and its "reverse" as "at least just as true." Remembering that faculty is related to facio, we accept the statement as to what it "designates;" but to say that it "depends upon the stages of culture through which he has passed and the one he has reached," is like saying that a youth's mathematical faculty depends upon the fact that he "has passed through" the Freshman, Sophomore, and Junior "stages of culture" and "has reached" the Senior. He may do this with the genius of Gauss, or he may do it in a perfunctory manner, without the ability to grasp and master such elementary notions as derivative and integral. If Waitz should now reply that such a youth has not really "passed through these stages," then we answer that he thereby assigns a new meaning to the phrase and evacuates his words of all definite import. In common parlance, the mathematical faculty of Gauss, his power to do in the immediate future, was amazing in his childhood, before he reached any notable "stages of culture" in mathematics. Still more striking is the case of Pascal. We do not deny that there may be some occult sense in which Waitz's words are true; but it is scarcely worth guessing at and, when divined, it will hardly add much to the clear deliverances of Bischoff, Donaldson, and others. [24]

The address before us now examines (p. 319) some of the "mental qualities" held to be "racial characteristics" of the "primitives," and rejects them one by one as "not proven." Such are "impulsiveness," "inability of concentration," "lack of originality." In our judgement, the most important of all instincts of civilization is the speculative, the pure-scientific, the impulse to know simply for the sake of knowing—most splendidly present in the Greek and the Teuton. It seems hard to believe, and certainly there is not a scintilla of evidence, that any such is a native quality of the Negro or Australian mind. But in these pages we find no firm basis for contention; the facts are not yet definitely ascertained. Enough that, if along these lines no case is made out against the primitive—and we have carefully refrained from trying to make out any—yet avowedly no case is made out for him; and the evidence, as far as it goes, is certainly not in his favour.

In conclusion, page 324 raises the important question whether "the faculty of man has been improved by civilization, and particularly, if that of primitive races may be improved by this agency." Civilization and domestication cause analogous anatomical changes, and it is likely that "mental changes" "go hand in hand with them." But no more.

No "progressive changes of the human organism," "particularly no advance in the size or complexity of the structure of the central nervous system caused by the cumulative influences of civilization can be proved." There are considerable psychic changes consequent on domestication and civilization; but these are due to environment. Any changes progressive or transmissible by heredity seem doubtful. None of this do we contest. On "relapses," we need not pause.

Hear, then, the conclusion of the whole matter (p. 326): "The anatomical evidence is such, that we may expect to find the races not equally gifted. While we have no right to consider one more ape-like than the other, the differences are such that some have probably greater mental vigour than others. The variations are, however, such that we may expect many individuals of all races to be equally gifted, while the number of men and women of higher ability will differ."

This states the case as favourably as possible for the "primitives," and, as we think for reasons already assigned (p. 146), far too favourably. Nevertheless, we accept it precisely as presented; for the logical purposes of this book, the concession of Negro inferiority here made is absolutely sufficient.

"We did not find proof of cumulative increase of faculty caused by civilization."

Accordingly, the Negro being concededly inferior to the White, there is no hope of raising him to the White level by education or civilization—precisely our fundamental contention.

Finally, "the average faculty of the white race is found to the same degree in a large proportion of individuals of all other races, and although it is probable that some of these races may not produce as large a proportion of great men as our own race, there is no reason to suppose that they are unable to reach the level of civilization represented by the bulk of our own people" (p. 327).

To us, these closing words read very much like a plea of confession and avoidance. It is admitted that the Negro is inferior to the Caucasian, that the summits of genius he will rarely, if ever, reach; but from the fact that many Negro brains equal many Caucasian brains in weight (p. 146), the same is inferred of "the average faculty." Hereby, as already pointed out, there is overlooked the all-important qualification that it is not a mere matter of weight, as well as the highly approved quotation from Donaldson, as to post-adolescent development (p. 147). The inference, then, is illegitimate that "they," i.e., "the large proportion" with "the average faculty" (or rather, average brain-weight) of the Caucasian, may "reach the level of civilization represented by the bulk of our own people." Moreover, it takes no account of those not included in this "large proportion," who are not a few. But the language is too vague to combat. We do not know what significance, relative or absolute, is attached to the group of great men, nor what is thought of the civilization of the bulk of our own people. Perhaps it is held, with D'Annunzio, that the hands of the peasant are "fit to clean out a stable, but not to raise in a legislative assembly." In any case, it is enough to remember that even the admittedly higher Caucasian average is none too high, that it needs heightening, that it cannot stand the least lowering, and to recall the lines of Browning already quoted (p. 88). Moreover, this is an age of intense competition daily intensified. The margin is so small that the least difference becomes important and even decisive. A very slight discrimination in freight rates may turn the tides of commerce this way or that and make or unmake a metropolis. Is it not clear, then, that in the keen competition of races the conceded inferiority of the Black must turn the scale against him more and more and doom him finally to defeat and disappearance beyond the reach of even the longest-armed philanthropy?

While then we greatly admire the testing, probing spirit of Dr. Boas, and thank him heartily for his broad-minded plea for the "primitives," we are unable to find in any of his pages anything but strong confirmations of the theses of our earlier chapters.




And the individual withers,

And the world is more and more.


The reader may find the foregoing discussion convincing; we think the unprejudiced reader will almost surely find it so, and yet he may not find it satisfactory. For he may urge that no solution has been propounded or foreshadowed for the problem, and that it is by no means enough merely to know what the problem is—its dangers, its difficulties, and its terrible threat. This objection is perfectly just. Up to this moment our sole concern has been to establish unshakably firm the central position, of the supreme and all-overshadowing importance of preserving the American-Caucasian blood pure and untainted and dedicated to the development of the highest humanity. But this accomplished, we have no disposition to shirk another task, to avoid another question, however delicate, disagreeable, or depressing. This question is: What has the future in store for the Negro? If social equality must be resolutely denied him forever, if he is to be treated as an outcast and a pariah because of his race and the weight of inheritance which he can never shake off from his shoulders, what hope remains? Where are the blessings of freedom? Is, then, emancipation but an apple of Sodom, turning to ashes on his lips? These are fearful questions, but we must not quail before them; we must confront them firmly, calmly, with eyes wide open to all the facts in the case, and with ears unclosed to all the teachings of history.

In the light of the foregoing, it is vain to appeal to Education. We know that many noble and excellent spirits expect wonders from this potent agency. As an educator ourself, we can have no interest or motive in unduly distrusting or minimizing its capabilities. The work that education may accomplish is undoubtedly great; and in spite of many discouraging disappointments, the task of educating the Negro will assuredly be bravely performed, in larger and larger measure, for all generations to come.

But it is a colossal error to suppose that race improvement, in the strictest sense of the term, can be wrought by education. [25] The reason is simple and easily understood: Race-improvement is organic; education is extraorganic. Any change or amelioration that affects the race, the stock, the blood, must be inherited; but education is not inherited, it is not inheritable. It must be renewed generation after generation in each individual. The Sisyphus-stone of culture is rolled with infinite toil up the steep ascent by the fathers; it thunders instantly back, and must be rolled up again with equal agony and bloody sweat by their children. All must start at the same centre of ignorance, and beat out a long and arduous path to the ever-widening circumference of the farthest knowledge. The son of the learned and the son of the unlearned have equal chance side by side in the race for learning. If the children of the cultured acquire more readily than their fellows, it is not because they have inherited parental culture, but only the inherited parental capacity for culture; not because their parents knew more, but because they had more inborn power to know. Had circumstances doomed the savant to ignorance, his children would not have suffered in their ability to learn. Nay more, if devotion to intellectual pursuits has any influence at all on the native quality of offspring, as it may possibly have in extreme cases, it would seem to be more probably hurtful than helpful; for, by impairing nutrition of the germinal cells, excessive intellectual activity may induce impotence and sterility; and the fecundity of the very highly cultured seems to have suffered measurably in Europe, if not in the United States. [26]

These propositions lie beyond possible contradiction. We need not raise the question of the general Weismannian theory of heredity; but we must recognize, as wholly undeniable, that the characters and qualities acquired by education are not in any degree inherited. The testimony of every-day observation is, on this point, so unanimous and so overwhelming that further insistence would seem superfluous. We may refer however, to the broad, patent, universally recognized fact that centuries of culture and most careful training have never been known to improve the breed, the stock, the inherent quality of any race of men or plants or domestic animals. Wherever any of these have been organically modified, it has been by other agencies, more especially by some form of natural or artificial selection. While the extra-organic development of civilization has gone on and still goes on, and apparently will go on apace indefinitely, under the guidance of science and invention, there is no evidence of any organic improvement in man in thousands of years, since the working of natural selection ceased to be progressive. The Mesopotamian of to-day is surely not the superior of his sculptured ancestors who observed and measured the precession of the equinoxes nearly 6,000 years ago. The Jew of to-day can boast nothing above the authors of the Psalms, and of Job, and of the prophecies of Isaiah. The modern Greek may or may not have descended from Homer or Pericles; but, surely, he has not ascended very far. It is needless to multiply illustrations. We believe firmly in the mutability of species; but the phenomenon of the permanence, even of sub-species and varieties, is far more universal and impressive.

Education, then, can do much; but its mission is to the present—it cannot stamp itself upon the future. The limits of its efficiency, though absolutely wide, are relatively narrow and are speedily reached. It plays with man the function of care and training, of cultivation and domestication, with the lower animals and with the products of the soil. By diligent tillage, by the spade, the hoe, the plough, by irrigation and fertilization, the planter may greatly increase the yield of his field or his orchard and even refine, in a measure, the quality of his fruit or his grain. By feeding, grooming, and the like, the horse-dealer may much improve the appearance and serviceability of his horses and may even add no little to their health, vigour, and value. It would be insanity in these men to neglect or despise such artificial helps and to trust their crops and their stock to grow and to take care of themselves. The farmer and the stockman know very well that only by the highest cultivation and the most watchful attention can they secure the best results in field or fold and maintain themselves in competition with wide-awake neighbours.

But they also know, not less certainly, that the maximal results of such instrumentalities are not far away but are hemmed within a very finite circle. Care and culture soon do their best and attain at least practically their ne plus ultra. For any progressive improvement, whether in animal or in plant, the agriculturist knows that he must look to the seed. This he must select with the utmost skill and caution—if he would even maintain the level of excellence already reached, if he would not have the "stock" lapse back to an ancient inferior average.

All this doctrine, which every one admits so instantly and unhesitatingly in its application to wheat, corn, and cotton; potatoes, apples, and oranges; grapes and melons; sheep, cattle, swine, and horses; bees, birds, and fishes—all holds with full force and with inconceivable significance when applied to men. Education is of exceeding importance. People that neglect it thereby doom themselves to hopeless subordination; they drop out of the race for the prizes of life; they surrender unconditionally to their rivals and commercial foes. Training and culture of the highest type are necessary to secure the realization of potentialities, to make the very best of the material offered at hand; necessary, not only now and here, but everywhere and all the time. Any neglect or indifference at this point must prove fatal. The husbandman dares not deprive his corn of a single "ploughing," or leave his herd one night unprotected from the wolf and the cold.

But it is the sheerest folly to expect of education the impossible—to dream that it can affect the blood, or transmute racial qualities, or smooth down the inequalities between individuals of the same breed, much less between the breeds themselves. Why, if education could lift the Negro to the Caucasian level, to what, pray, in the meantime would it lift the Caucasian himself? We repeat, and the repetition cannot be made too emphatic, there is no hope whatever of any organic improvement, of any race betterment of the Negro, from any or from all extra-organic agencies of education or religion or civilization. Let us, then, educate the negro, to make him a more useful and productive, a law-abiding and happier member of the community; but let us not hope too much from this education, if we would not be bitterly disappointed.

Immediately after the Civil War, in the halcyon days of reconstruction, the higher education was administered copiously to the Negro, in the honest belief that it was the catholicon for his ills; and universities for the Coloured man sprang up thick about us. Here, in New Orleans, there are at least three. A sadder and at the same time a more ludicrous sight we have never beheld than on the occasion of a call upon the President of one of these soi-disant universities. We waited in the ante-room for the dismissal of his class in psychology. At last the bell tapped, and half a dozen Mulatto women, the whole class, emerged from the lecture-room of this distinguished scholar, whose name was not unknown in Europe. With a look of infinite despair, which not even his mistaken enthusiasm for humanity could quite chase away, the heavy-hearted lecturer followed and proceeded to conduct us through the building to his own residence. We passed through but one room where class exercises were in progress. An olive-coloured young man was at the board, trying to explain to a Mulatto woman, the only member of the class, the mysterious nature of a perpendicular. He appeared very earnest in his exposition, but unable to awaken any answering intelligence. To us, it seemed that the force of folly could no further go; and our commiseration for the highly cultured theologian, since released from his labours, who had so utterly forgotten the famous prohibition near the close of the Sermon on the Mount, was and remains even to this day painfully intense.

We hear less nowadays of the saving efficacy of Greek, Latin, and the Calculus, [27] but all the more of the imperative necessity for industrial training—the idea which Mr. Washington has championed so vigorously and to which Mr. Carnegie has lent the sanction of his munificence. Undoubtedly this notion, if not far wiser, is at least far more practicable. While the higher culture at "coloured universities," in the vast majority of cases, merely spoils a plough-hand or house-maid, industrial training, like that given at Tuskegee, may very reasonably be expected to raise sensibly the productive efficiency of the Negro, and to elevate the general standard of his life through the formation of valuable habits of manual dexterity, of accuracy, of conscientiousness, and of thrift—not to mention occasional great gain in scientific equipment, or even some artistic awakening. One cannot deny, then, that Mr. Washington has undertaken a great and beneficent work for his race—one in which some measurable success may reasonably be hoped for.

But our sympathy with such rational and well-directed efforts must not blind us to near-lying limitations, which no might of man can possibly remove. Let it be said, then, boldly that the Negro will not enter generally or in great numbers into the field of skilled labour—neither in the North nor in the South. It is, of course, not unattended with danger to venture into the realm of prophecy, but in this case the bases of prediction seem particularly broad and solid. We all know that skilled labour is daily growing more and more thoroughly organized. Rightly or wrongly, for weal or for woe, it regards capital, especially combined and organized capital, if not as its enemy, at least as its exploiter, prepared at every instant to make the very most of it—to assail it at any and every exposed point, to throttle it by any and every means, and to reduce it to serfdom. As over against the might of accumulated millions, the labourer cannot fail to perceive his utter impotence—he is not even a drop of a bucket. It is only in great numbers, in compact and readily wielded organizations, that the individual workman can count for anything whatever—can find any hope of escape from the veriest servitude. It is idle to suppose that, in many years to come, capital will not continue to mass itself into formidable aggregations, or that labour will cease to array itself in firmer and firmer unions and associations for self-protection and for maintenance or elevation of the standard of life, the minimum of subsistence.

Now, to such federations of labour, to such combinations for the commonweal, involving, as they so often do, the most determined self-renunciation, the most heroic self-sacrifice, even the Caucasian nature is by no means full-grown, and the Negroid is altogether unequal. There is not the slightest probability that the great labour organizations would, in general, think of admitting to their membership an element of such notable weakness as the Negro would certainly be. Such would be the case, even if other considerations were absent. But they are present. As inferiors, accustomed to a lower standard of life and more pliant to the demands of employers, the Negroes would present the same problem and the same menace as the Chinese—only in a more aggravated form. In their admission in large numbers to the ranks of skilled labour, this latter could not fail to see a terrible and instant threat of reduced wages, of lowered life, of baser thraldom. Race prejudice, if you call it so, would blaze out immediately, and with irresistible violence. It makes not the slightest difference whether labour would be right or wrong, justified or unjustified; it would be the instinct of self-preservation fanned suddenly into vehement flame, and nothing could withstand it. As an example in point, take the violent opposition offered a few years ago by the miners of Illinois to the importation of Negro labourers; take the recent practically total expulsion of Negroes, many of them peaceable and unoffending, from various towns, districts, and counties in Pennsylvania, Indiana, Missouri, Kansas, Illinois, and elsewhere. Consider all this as unreasonable, as outrageous—it matters not; it shows the temper of the American-Caucasian labourer, which will hardly tolerate the competition of his equals, and certainly not of any form of labour lower than his own. And in defence of what he regards as the most important and most sacred of all his rights, he will not hesitate for an instant at the adoption of means. [28]

Accordingly, we may confidently affirm that the experiment of Mr. Washington and his Northern multi-millionaire admirers, to solve the race problem by making of the Negro a skilled labourer, may indeed be magnificent, but, in any large measure, it cannot succeed. If at any time it seemed to promise any very wide success, it would rouse a race animosity, North and South, the like of which we have not yet beheld.

What fields of employment, then, remain open to the Negroid? We answer: Those he has thus far occupied, where there is no great organized competition of the Whites. The plantation and the countless forms of personal and occasional service are undoubtedly the regions where his abilities may be most naturally and most profitably employed. There, too, his better qualities, his endowments both of mind and of body, find fullest and most useful play. Small farming and retail dealing he may also do successfully; he may teach his kind, he may preach and plead and prescribe and publish for them. Superior artisans will show themselves here and there, and occasionally abilities of still higher order will crop out, especially among Mulattoes. If they will, these can find ample scope for their powers within the ranks of their own people. Spartam tuam exorna will, in all such cases, be the counsel of friendly wisdom. Vain and foolish for even the superior Negroid to try to take the kingdom of heaven by force, to conquer a position among the Whites commensurate with his abilities as a Black. Better a big frog in a small puddle than a small frog in a big puddle. In general, whatever tends towards the sharp demarcation of the two races, towards the accurate delimitation of their spheres of activity and influence, will unquestionably make for peace, for prosperity, for mutual understanding, and for general contentment. On the other hand, every attempt to blur these boundaries, to wipe out natural distinctions, to mix immiscibles, must always issue in confusion, discord, failure, reciprocal injury, and final ruin.

We think that universal history attests the correctness of this observation. Wherever border lines have been closely drawn and distinctly recognized, whether between species or races, nations or tribes, castes, classes, or individuals, there have been found at least comparative quiet, harmony, mutual regard, and even happiness. But ill-defined borders have been everywhere and everywhen the fruitful source of strife, destruction, and misery. It was with a just feeling for this great truth that the profound Gnostic, Basilides, declared that in "the restoration of all things," at "the consummation of the æons," every element would seek its own place and there abide forever, and not as if fishes were trying to pasture with sheep upon the mountains. A kindred sense of the fitness of things is revealed here in the South (and also in the North), where one will often hear it said that "I like a Negro—in his place." This does not mean, at least it need not mean, any harshness or over-haughtiness on the part of the speaker. We have often heard it on the lips of the kindest-hearted, the most humane in their treatment of the Negro. It is a just recognition of a patent, unmistakable, and incontrovertible fact, which no humanity can amend and no sophistry can disguise. The same feeling is frequently met with among sober-minded Blacks, who, much to one's surprise sometimes, are found to resent the ambitious attempts of their fellows, generally Mulattoes, to rise above their own race and align themselves with the Whites. We affirm then that drawing the colour line, firm and fast, between the races, first of all in social relations, and then by degrees in occupations also, is a natural process and a rational procedure, which makes equally for the welfare of both.

That this process will actually go on, though with many interruptions and much opposition, we cannot doubt. The latter will be due in the main to aspiring Mulattoes, to purblind philanthropists, and to designing politicians—all three the real enemies of the Negro and the disturbers of his peace.

In spite of them, however, the process will go on, and we shall see whether the Negro be able to maintain himself in the presence of the Caucasian, though in an inferior place, playing a subordinate rôle, within a protected but contracted sphere of activity. Certainly not a brilliant future that opens before him, at the very best. Even the highest success might seem humble enough, but is it sure that even such a lowly victory awaits him?

Here, again, prophecy would seem to be hazardous, but we cannot fail to notice and to record some significant tokens. Of these, one of the most notable is the marked tendency of the Negroes to herd together in the cities. It is well known that the problem of securing labour in the country is becoming increasingly difficult. Many plantations have, in fact, been abandoned for no other reason than that labourers could not be found to cultivate them. Italians and other Europeans are immigrating thither, and the question is eagerly debated whether they will fill acceptably the gap left by the departing Negroes. Whether this tide cityward, which is actually decimating some sections of the Black Belt, will turn and roll back, we may not guess; but it seems unlikely. To all appearances the Negroes will stream steadily towards the towns, and gather more and more densely in certain localities. [29]

But this tendency deals them death. The mortality among the coloured population of our cities is frightful. The gravest maladies establish themselves among these unsanitated throngs and rage with ruinous virulence. In ante-bellum days pulmonary tuberculosis was infrequent among the plantation Blacks of the South; now it lashes them with a scourge of desolation, and pneumonia even more ruthlessly. Typhoid fever also ravages their ranks with fury. Still worse, contagious diseases are fearfully prevalent. Among a populace to which chastity and continence are terms almost unknown and meaningless, these must diffuse and propagate themselves like an epidemic, they must lower the general vitality, and still more directly the virility and fecundity. Hitherto, the rate of multiplication has been in a measure maintained by a high birth rate in the face of a fearful mortality. But this cannot last. The plain indications now are that the birth rate is falling and must fall, while the death rate rises with the steady influx into the towns, the abandonment of the simple and healthful modes of country life for the vice and diseases of the village. [30] Even at best, the city is an ulcer on the face of the earth, a maelstrom, a minotaur devouring the yearly tribute of the strength and beauty of the land. [31] But for the Negro, it stands ready with two-handed engine of death.

Moreover, the gloomy hopelessness of the situation must become apparent as the decades glide by. The Negro must feel that competition is becoming sharper, that his territory is becoming narrower and narrower, that twentieth-century citizenship is, like the Gospel commandment, made for those who can receive it, that he is unequal to the load cast upon him, that he is sinking beneath the burden of an honour unto which he was not born. Herewith the joyousness of life must depart, the old-time buoyancy of the race give place to a deepening despond. [32] As the generations pass on, the Negro will be hemmed every way within straiter and straiter limits, his numbers will decrease, his digit will move further to the right in the great sum of humanity—slowly, silently, steadily he will be driven to the wall. Possibly he may emigrate in large numbers to some tropical clime which nature has forbidden to the Caucasian. This would indeed be the happiest possible solution for the South, and he would be a courageous seer who would declare that this century will not see a large exodus of Negroes from the Gulf region. But we do not believe that such emigration will go northward. Our Northern friends have no more affection or use for the Negro than have we. They love to pet him and let their benevolence play about him—this so long as they can patronize him, can "offer him financial assistance," and "stick a diamond pin in his coat," and lay at his feet "the Presidency of Haiti as soon as it is conquered by an expedition now under preparation." Besides, his vote is a very important weight to throw into the scale in cases of doubtful elections. But once let the Blacks turn their faces northward in great numbers, let them begin to swarm by myriads, and derange the labour conditions, and drag down the scale of wages, and oust the Whites from their places—then philanthropy will be thrown to the winds, and the arm of the government at Washington will not be strong enough or long enough to guard these wards of the nation from violence and persecution and outrage. [33]

If the Blacks should occupy and settle, should colonize, some outlying tropical region, [34] and should there start out on their own path of development, it is interesting, though not so important, to ask, What would be their probable future? We answer, though we build no argument whatever on this answer, that the experiment would most likely be a repetition of Haiti; removed from the sustaining atmosphere of European civilization, the Negro would most probably sink back into barbarism. If there be anything in the history either of man or of nature that would lead us to anticipate some other result, we know not what it is.

At this point our forecast has become so sombre that the optimistic reader may grow impatient with such pessimism, and may at least demand some confirmation of our vaticinations. The fact is that we have long hesitated to make public our convictions, since the rôle of Cassandra has few attractions, and it is only an after-thought to print them in this volume, though they were indicated, many months ago, in The Nation of March 5, 1903. However, to enhearten us, within the last week we have lighted upon the corroborative testimony of perhaps the highest authority in the United States—a scholar whose opportunities for forming a judgement are certainly unsurpassed, if indeed equaled—whose abilities are not questioned, and whose freedom from prejudice is absolute. In a notable address delivered May 10, 1900, at the First Annual Conference held at Montgomery, Ala., under the auspices of the Southern Society for the promotion of the study of race conditions and problems in the South, Professor W. F. Willcox, of Cornell University, Chief Statistician of the United States Census Office at Washington, a "New Englander by birth and ancestry," declared that he could "not read the evidence as Dr. Curry apparently does," "Races, like nations, exist to serve humanity, and come and go in the long run according as they meet or fail to meet this test." "These diverse races of men may be roughly graded according to their value to humanity and their ability to improve. In any effort so to arrange them, the least serviceable and least progressive people are found to be those whose habitat secured the greatest isolation, freedom from competition and lack of incentive to improvement. Such peoples were found especially in the islands of the ocean, in the continent of Australia, in America, and in Africa." Nevertheless, Africa seems to have been the scene of most extraordinary mingling of bloods—a battle ground of widely diverse tribes; [35] in spite of this the African still belongs to "the least serviceable and least progressive people." "Those two backward races, viz., the Negro and the Malay." "When higher and lower races meet and interpenetrate, only two permanent solutions have thus far been recorded in history. Either the lower race has disappeared, or the two have fused, and in the case of especial moment to us all, and to the future of this country, I cannot believe that looking down through the centuries any other permanent solution than one of these two can be found. During the period of slavery the Negro race in the United States was protected from competition with the Whites, somewhat as it would have been by local isolation, or somewhat as domesticated animals are protected from the dangers nature throws about them. Only since emancipation has genuine competition between the races in this country existed, and during the early years after the Civil War the conditions were such as to favor the Negro race and to handicap the whites." "Notwithstanding the fact that the Negroes were aided and the whites downcast during these dark years, the white population has grown with great and increasing rapidity." "The conditions to which the white race is subject will probably never again be so unfortunate, the conditions to which the Negro race is subject will not soon, if ever, be so favorable as during the years after the Civil War." Yet notice some of the changes that have occurred during the thirty years from 1860 to 1890, brief span as this is in the life of a race.

"The black belt may be defined as those counties in which the Negro population outnumbered the white. In Maryland in 1860 there were five such counties, and in 1890 only two. In Virginia there were forty-three and in 1890 only thirty-three. In North Carolina there were nineteen and in 1890 only sixteen. The group of adjoining counties in southeastern Maryland, eastern Virginia and northeast North Carolina, which formed the most northerly outpost of the black belt in 1860, has decreased in thirty years from sixty-two counties to forty-six, or almost exactly one-fourth. In 1860 Kentucky had one county belonging to the black belt, while in 1890 it had none. In 1860 northern Alabama had two counties belonging to the black belt, but in 1890 both of these had disappeared from the map. In the cotton-growing regions of the more southerly States there has been an increase of the counties belonging to the black belt, but not enough entirely to offset these changes. It seems that locally the Negroes have begun to yield ground to the whites in the regions most favorable to the latter, and that such a change is likely to continue.

"I have no time to go into the complex statistical evidence bearing upon the vitality of the Negro race, and its power to meet successfully the increasing industrial competition, to which it must be exposed, as these States fill with people, as cities spring up and prosper, and as industry, trade and agriculture become diversified and more complex. The balance of the evidence, however, seems to me to indicate for the future a continuance of changes already begun, viz., a decrease in the Negro birth-rate decidedly more rapid than the actual present or probable future decrease in the death-rate. This would result obviously in a slackening rate of increase, and then in a stationary condition, followed by slow numerical retrogression. If this anticipation should be realized, the Negroes will continue to become, as they are now becoming, a steadily smaller proportion of the population.

"The final outcome, though its realization may be postponed for centuries, will be, I believe, that the race will follow the fate of the Indians, that the great majority will disappear before the whites, and that the remnant found capable of elevation to the level of the white man's civilization will ultimately be merged and lost in the lower classes of the whites, leaving almost no trace to mark their former existence.

"Where such a lower people has disappeared, the causes of their death have been mainly disease, vice and profound discouragement. It seems to me clear that each one of these causes is affecting the Negro race far more deeply and unfavorably at the present time than it was at the date of their emancipation. The medical evidence available points to the conclusion that they are more than ever afflicted with the scourges of disease, such as typhoid fever and consumption, and with the physical ills entailed by sexual vice. I have argued elsewhere to show that both in the North and in the South crime among the Negroes is rapidly increasing. Whether the race as a whole is as happy, as joyous, as confident of the future, or thoughtless of it, as it was before the war, you, my hearers, know far better than I. I can only say that in my studies I have found not one expression of dissent from the opinion that the joyous buoyancy of the race is passing away; that they feel upon them a burden of responsibility to which they are unequal; that the lower classes of Negroes are resentful, and that the better classes [are] not certain or sanguine of the outcome. If this judgment be true, I can only say that it is perhaps the most fatal source of race as of national decay and death."

The foregoing excerpts seem to us to be the weightiest words of authority on this subject that have fallen under our notice. They deserve to be stamped in letters of gold on the walls of the Public Library in Boston and over the pulpit of Plymouth Church in Brooklyn, on the lintels of the White House, and on the title-page of all future editions of The Independent and The Nation. Of course, the superior culture and intelligence of our opponents may easily snuff out all our arguments with a sneer at our straitened and archaic provincialism;—so be it: we deserve no better fate, having been born South of Mason and Dixon's line, most imprudently. But what, pray, if they deign to flutter through this volume, what will they do with this utterance of the Puritan pur sang, the Chief Statistician? Can they afford to dismiss it as that of "another good man gone wrong."

If then the Afro-American race stands even now at the entrance of the Valley of the Shadow of Death, what shall we say, what shall we do? Shall we weep and wail and gnash our teeth? Shall we lift up the trump of indignation against such red-handed iniquity? Shall we cry out to Heaven and to Congress against the crime of the centuries? We think that a much calmer and milder mood may well become us before such a thanatopsis. Why should the spectacle of a racial diminuendo so arouse or revolt us? Surely it is something neither unique nor uncommon. All that breathe will share their destiny. It is appointed unto men once to die. If it were the highest form of human life, we might be concerned or even confounded. But such it is not; on the contrary, it is one of the very lowest, that has hitherto enacted and promises hereafter to enact only unhistorical history. "The old order changeth, yielding place to new." The recession, the evanescence, of the Negro before the Caucasian is only one example among millions of the process of nature. The ministry of death is not maleficent; says the Cabbala, "The Lord said unto the Angel of Death, Behold I have made thee cosmocrator." In the upward mounting of the forms of life, there are no other stepping-stones than their own dead selves. The vision, then, of a race vanishing before its superior is not at all dispiriting, but inspiring rather. It is but a part of the increasing purpose of the ages, a forward creeping of the eternal dawn.

The doom that awaits the Negro has been prepared in like measure for all inferior races. Except where they are bulwarked by the climate, they must be drowned by the mounting wave of their superior rivals. To the clear, cold eye of science, the plight of these backward peoples appears practically hopeless. They have neither part nor parcel in the future history of man; they are rejected as dross from its thrice-heated furnace.

This may sound harsh and unfeeling, but in reality it is not so. We do not mean that the inferior should be treated unjustly, unkindly, inhumanly. Far from it. Let equity be dealt with an even hand. We have never given either voice or vote for any form of injustice, however specious, or plausible, or grandfatherly. The processes we have in view lie deeper than any legislation; they are inwoven in the living garment of the Godhead.

But may we not check or arrest them? May not the strong Caucasian lend a helping hand to his weaker African brother and lift him up, and the two walk along hand in hand through the centuries? This is a very idyllic picture. "Behold, how good and how pleasant for brethren to dwell together in unity." But a moment's reflection must show how inadequate and unreal this dew of Hermon. It is not hard for altruism to run suicidally mad, if one lets go the check-rein of egoism. The first and highest and unescapable duty of a race is to its self—to realize its own personality, to put forth all its powers and potencies, to unfold the full flower of its own being. It must neither be unjust nor ungenerous in its treatment of others, but neither must it attempt self-immolation—especially, as that sacrifice would be idle and unanswered. The most, the best that one race can effect for another is merely some extra-organic amelioration of condition. The organic destiny of that other, written in blood and bone and cell and plasma, lies beyond the reach of the helping hand. We must dismiss, then, this vision of a higher race stooping down with arms of love and lifting up the lower to its altitude, as merely a pious imagination. The higher race may indeed stoop down; it has often done so; but never to rise again; instantly there falls upon it the Davidic curse: "Bow down their back alway."

The fate that awaits the backward race in the presence of the advanced should appear more vividly, one would think, to no other eyes than to those of New England. "Across the ocean came a pilgrim bark, bearing the seeds of life and of death. The former were sown for you; the latter sprang up in the path of the simple native." Nor in this process of extermination, in these "centuries of dishonour," has it really been a question of fairness or unfairness, of righteousness or unrighteousness. No kind or degree of gentleness or justice could have long delayed the departure of the Indian. When North-Europeans landed on his shores, for him the clock of destiny had struck. While we may properly applaud or condemn individual and communal acts by standards of individual or communal ethics, it is not possible to judge the race by any such feeble sense. Nature is neither moral nor immoral, but supermoral. Her æonian processes are not to be measured by our rules nor defined by our categories; they tower above good and bad; they reach beyond right and wrong. Should Roman legions have conquered Greece and girdled the Mediterranean with her civilization? Ought Babylonian empire to have lifted up its lion wings over Western Asia? We perceive at once the emptiness of such questions.

But even if it were possible for us to turn back the tide of time, to stay or slacken the rolling of the wheel of birth, would it be well or wise to do so? We venture to question it most seriously. There is a personal and even a social morality that may easily become racially immoral. There are diseases whose evolutionary function is to weed out the weak, and so preserve the future for the strong. The sufferers cannot be treated with too careful attention, too loving gentleness, too tender sympathy. It is the glory of our humanity to cherish these frail flowers, to water them with dew, to shield them from the sun, and not to suffer even the winds of summer to visit them too roughly. But not to gather from them the seed for generations to come! Let theirs be the present, but not the future. He who should discover some serum and apply it greatly to prolong their lives and give them equal chance with the vigorous in the matter of offspring, whatever thanks he might win from individuals or the community, would deserve and receive the execration of his race as its deadliest and most insidious foe. So, too, we hold it to be certain that all forms of humanitarianism that tend to give the organically inferior an equal chance with the superior in the propagation of the species, are radically mistaken; to the individual and to society they would sacrifice the race. Their error may be very amiable, but it is none the less mortal. The hope of humanity lies not in strengthening the weak, but in perfecting the strong.

Herewith, then, we close this discussion. The mistake of our opponents is here exposed in its deepest root, its inmost core. It is seen to be a mistake in philosophy, in cosmology, in the scientific interpretation of the process of nature. But what a weird light is now cast upon the War between the States, its cause, and its ultimate result! Aside from questions of political theory, the North sought to free the Negro, the South to hold him in bondage. As a slave he had led a protected, indeed a hothouse, existence and had flourished marvellously. His high-hearted champions shed torrents of blood and treasure to shatter the walls of his prison-house, to dispel the pent-up, stifling gloom of his dungeon, and to pour in upon him the free air and light of heaven. But the sun of liberty is no sooner arisen with burning breath than, lo! smitten by the breeze and the beam, he withers and dies!




Of all these things the judge is Time.


In the foregoing chapters it is only by way of exception that there has been made any formal use of statistical data, or any reference to scientific authorities;—in fact, there has been a studied avoidance of the sympathetic literature of the subject. But it seems wise and, above all, just to the reader, to guard well every salient position, to throw round every argumentative assertion a bulwark of mathematical evidence—a task that presents little difficulty, since in general the facts in the case are well ascertained and the testimony unanimous. At only a few points, and those of rather minor importance, do the depositions go wide apart. In casting up these circumvallations, we shall be at pains to cite only witnesses against whom no exceptions can lie; many very valuable ones shall be excluded, merely for geographical reasons; we do not ask the reader to heed even a scientific word that might be tinged with prejudice.

Next to the United States Census Reports, which must of course be our main source, we shall use, in discussing anthropometry, the great work of Frederick L. Hoffman, F. S. S., statistician to the Prudential Insurance Company of America, entitled "Race Traits and Tendencies of the American Negro," published as Vol. XI., Nos. 1, 2, and 3, of the publications of the American Economic Association, by the Macmillan Company, August, 1896,—the result of ten years' careful investigation—a book almost beyond praise. Among his more recent supplementary studies may be mentioned his "Race and Mortality," October, 1902.

The author is a German and without race prejudice. For him the problem of race pathology exists as a purely practical one: At what rates can the Negro be insured? No emotion can enter here; it is a mere question of dollars and cents, and for insurance companies a vital one. To our opponents, his judgements may sometimes sound harsh; but they are scarcely harsher than the facts, which he seldom forces, but interprets fairly. His conclusions have, of course, been passionately assailed, as by Professor Kelly Miller; but in no important particulars have they been seriously shaken.

In the following statistical tables, we shall frequently use the myriad as the unit. Thereby the data are made easier to understand and to remember; there is a great economy of space and of attention, and no appreciable sacrifice of accuracy. For in case of such immense numbers it is idle to hope for correctness in the fourth figure; errors will almost surely reach up into the thousands, if not above. Besides, we shall use these data for purely argumentative purposes, and no argument is in the least affected by a change in the thousands. Thus, the population of New Orleans is given at 287,104. No one can deny that it may have been nearer 286,000 or 288,000. We shall indicate it by twenty-nine (myriads), by which we mean merely that it is between 285,000 and 295,000. So, when we speak of a mortality of 234, we mean 234 yearly per myriad. So we shall put a recent death-rate of Chicago at 145 (per 10,000) rather than at 14.49 (per 1,000). The last digit can lay no claim to correctness.


The grand totals of the population in the Continental United States, as given by the census reports, are:

  W. N. W. N. W. N.
      (Gains, per 1000)
1900 6,681 883        
      1,171 135 212 180
1890 5,510 749        
      1,170 91 267 138
1880 4,340 658        
      981 170 292 349
1870 3,359 488        
      667 44 248 99
1860 2,693 444        
      737 80 377 221
1850 1,955 364        

It needs no ghost from the tomb to tell us that some of these census returns are wrong, and widely wrong. An increase of 221 per thousand during a decade (1850-60) of universal and extraordinary prosperity, under singularly favourable conditions, seems every way likely and calls for no remark. But the following decade (1860-70), while it wrought ruin upon the Whites, brought freedom to the Blacks and in no way worked them any hardship. That their rate of increase should have fallen off from 221 to ninety-nine seems, then, quite incredible. Again, the next decade (1870-80) marked the end of the riot of Africanism in the South, and its second half saw white supremacy restored and the Blacks forcibly repressed. On the whole, then, it could hardly have been so favourable to the Negroes as the preceding, and yet their numbers leap up nearly two millions, at the astounding rate of 349 per thousand. Their conditions were certainly no worse during the next decade (1880-90), yet they grow only half as much, and at a rate little over one-third as fast—only 138 per thousand. There is no visible sign of improvement in conditions during the next decade, yet they multiply measurably faster—at the rate of 180 per thousand. When the results for 1880 were announced, it was felt that the game was lost for the white man. Accordingly, in 1883, Professor C. A. Gardiner, of Brooklyn, N.Y., could forecast that in thirty years the Southern Negro would outstrip the Southern White in wealth, intelligence, and numbers, and within a century would absorb that White completely!—a prediction only less buoyant and highly coloured than Gen. Pope's of July 14, 1867, that "five years will have transferred intelligence and education, so far as the masses are concerned, to the colored people of this district" (Alabama, Georgia, Florida). At such a rate the Negroes in 1900 would have numbered about fourteen millions, and in 1910 about twenty millions, in 1920 nearly thirty millions; in 1950 they would have surpassed eighty millions, the present population of our Union, and in 1990 they would have reached 320 millions. So that the practically complete Africanization of the United States would be only a question of this century. The census of 1890 showed an immense falling off in this rate (from 349 to 138) and so allayed such fears. The last census shows, apparently, a slight rise in the Negro increase (from 138 to 180)—which, however, remains notably behind that of the Whites (212), by about 15 per cent.

However, since these returns involve manifest absurdities, it is hard to ground any argument upon them. Presumably, the last census is more nearly correct. It is generally admitted that the census of 1870 was grossly defective. In our judgement, both those of 1880 and especially of 1890 were far below the mark; but it would be hard to prove this rigorously. It seems that the rate from 1850 to 1860 is, on its face, the most reasonable. As the Negroes were then slaves, their numbers were very probably returned correctly by the owners. As there was no motive against and every motive for their rapid multiplication, and as their death rate was certainly much lower than after emancipation, it seems certain that 221 per thousand (say 22 per cent.) represents their maximum natural increase per decade. This would have given about 542 myriads for 1870, about 661 for 1880, about 806 for 1890, about 980 for 1900. This would indicate, then, that the census of 1880 is also nearly correct, while that of 1870 is most sadly defective, and that of 1890 seriously so. Still, this latter can hardly have erred by fifty myriads—perhaps by twenty or thirty; so that the number in 1890 should possibly be 770 myriads. In that case, the numbers since 1850 would be given, nearly enough for memory, by the hundred thousand, thus:

1860 1870 1880 1890 1900  
44 55 66 77 88, instead of
44 49 66 75 88  

Of course, these numbers are not exact; but they are, on the average, more nearly so than those of the census reports given in the line below, which disprove themselves.

At any rate, the Negro numbers have been nearly doubled in forty years. This is an average rate of almost exactly 20 per cent. per decade. Since the earlier rate was certainly more than twenty, the latter must have been certainly less; in fact, even according to the census, there is a falling off from 221 to 180, and this latter figure should probably be reduced to 160. It must be reduced, unless the census of 1890 was as perfect as that of 1900, which is most unlikely. While we consider positively necessary some such amendment of the census returns as we have suggested, yet we ground no argument thereon; we rest on the certainty that the rate of increase of the Negro has fallen off at least 16 per cent. since the days of his slavery. His absolute increase has been about maintained, so that the next census (1910) will give him, perhaps, slightly under ten millions.

Meantime the total white population has advanced from 1,955 to 6,681 myriads; or, since 1860, from 2,692 to 6,681—not quite two and one-half times. But we must remember the desolating war that ravaged the North, and particularly the South, of its Caucasian bloom for four years, and left the latter utterly prostrate. This is shown in the fearful descent in gain from 377 to 248. The gain in that decade should have been about 900 instead of 667, which would have given the Whites about 8,100 myriads in 1900—almost exactly tripling the return of 1860. By natural increase, then, the white population about triples itself in forty years, while the black about doubles. Hence, the latter must form an ever-diminishing fraction of the whole population. In fact, the number of Negroes per thousand of the whole population, since 1790, is as follows:

1790 1800 1810 1820 1830 1840 1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900
193 189 190 184 182 168 157 141 127 131 119 116

We have seen that the estimate for 1870 is certainly much too low, as also extremely probably that for 1890. In any case, it is hereby proved that the black is rapidly falling in ratio to the white population. Such a descent, pursued for a few centuries, would bring it to comparative insignificance.

To be sure, it must not be forgotten that the White increase is due largely to immigration. But there seems to be no reason why this immigration should not be continued indefinitely; at present it is particularly heavy and will weigh very perceptibly in the census of 1910.

Again, it must not be disguised that the birth rate among the older New England stock of native white Americans has fallen lamentably low—even beneath the point of bare race maintenance. A thousand such couples rear only about 950 couples. This race decay seems, surely, the most alarming symptom in our national life—a tendency which it seems exceedingly hard to combat. However, there are yet vigorous and prolific Caucasian tribes in great abundance on the face of the earth; and if the native white American prefers to die out, why, let him die—no one can help it. The white foreigner will certainly step in and fill his place more virilely, if not more worthily. There is nothing, then, in this phenomenon, humiliating though it is, to shake the conclusions already stated.

But an even more interesting matter than the relation of the Negro to the Union at large is his relation to special sections. The grand divisions in the census reports are North Atlantic, South Atlantic, North Central, South Central, and Western. In only two of these, the South Atlantic and the South Central, is the Negro really a problem. In the others, he is a vanishing quantity. Thus, in the North Atlantic and the North Central, his myriads are only:

  1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900
North Atlantic 15 16 18 23 27 39
North Central 14 18 27 39 43 50

This increase has been rapid—much more rapid than elsewhere; but he remains, and must always remain, insignificant. The increase has been due to immigration, for it is conceded that his natural rate of increase in the North will not even maintain his numbers. Left to himself there, he would certainly die out. This immigration will certainly continue and will actually contribute to the destruction of the race, as it were by steadily lopping off the extreme boughs of the tree.

Of the West, nothing need be said. For the South Atlantic and South Central, the record is as follows:

    1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900
S. A., W. 282 331 364 466 560 671
  N. 186 206 222 294 326 373
S. C., W. 281 373 423 590 749 982
  N. 149 204       220 [36] 301       350 [37] 419

Here we perceive, at once, that the situation on the Atlantic is unequivocal. The Black tinge is fading away; that population has exactly doubled itself only in fifty years, while in the South Central it has doubled in forty years. Compare now the White record in the same (South Atlantic) regions. Owing to the Civil War, the growth during the decade 1860-70 was under thirty-five myriads—less than half of the normal growth; nevertheless, the White population has more than doubled itself in thirty-five years, from 1865 to 1900. In 1850 there were 397 Blacks to every thousand, in 1900 only 356. The next half century will see a still further reduction. The White increase, in the last decade, was 20 per cent.; the Black was only 14.

Coming to the South Central, we find the case equally clear. Here again, the civil strife amerced the Whites of at least half a decade; the increase from 1860 to 1870 was only fifty myriads, whereas it should have been over 100, since it was ninety-two from 1850 to 1860. Nevertheless, we find that the White number has doubled in twenty-five years (from 1875 to 1900), but the black in forty (from 1860 to 1900). From 1850 to 1860 the Black gain was over 40 per cent., the White was under 34 per cent.; but, for the last decade (1890 to 1900), the Black gain was 20 per cent., the White about 30 per cent. In the whole half century, the Blacks have gained 181 per cent.; but the Whites, in spite of their numerous losses in four years' war, have gained over 249 per cent. In 1850, of every thousand, 347 were Black; but, in 1900, only 299.

It is demonstrated, then, that in these two focal regions of African strength not only is that strength relatively decreasing, but it is decreasing faster and faster. The hour cometh when neither by the ocean nor by the gulf will it signify more than it does now in Philadelphia or New York.

If now we turn to the statistics of the states, we shall, of course, find this general average result unevenly distributed. Only the states included in the following table can have any interest for us:

    1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900
Alabama {W. 43 53 52 66 83 100
  {N. 35 44 48 60 69 83
Arkansas {W. 16 32 36 59 82 94
  {N. 5 11 12 21 31 37
Dist. of Columbia {W. 3.8 6.1 8.8 12 15 19
  {N. 1.4 1.4 4.3 6 8 9
Florida {W. 4.7 7.8 9.6 14 22 30
  {N. 4.0 6.3 9.2 13 17 23
Georgia {W. 52 59 64 82 98 118
  {N. 38 47 55 73 86 103
Kentucky {W. 76 92 110 138 159 186
  {N. 22 24 22 27 27 28
Louisiana {W. 26 36 36 45 56 73
  {N. 26 35 36 48 56 65
Maryland {W. 42 52 61 72 83 95
  {N. 17 17 18 21 22 24
Mississippi {W. 30 36 38 48 54 64
  {N. 31 44 44 65 74 91
Missouri {W. 59 106 160 202 253 294
  {N. 9 12 12 15 15 16
North Carolina {W. 55 63 68 87 106 126
  {N. 32 36 39 53 56 62
South Carolina {W. 27 29 29 39 46 56
  {N. 39 41 42 60 69 78
Tennessee {W. 76 83 94 114 134 154
  {N. 25 28 32 40 43 48
Texas {W. 15 42 56 120 175 243
  {N. 6 18 25 39 49 62
Virginia {W. 89 105 114 147 175 211
  {N. 53 55 53 66 67 70

In spite of the fact that the gross defects of the ninth enumeration (1870), and in less degree of the eleventh (1890), greatly obscure these figures, their import and their implications are entirely unmistakable. Three movements deserve especial notice: the movement in the first decade, in the last decade, and during the whole half century. Looking then at Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, and Virginia, we see that the Negro has increased in numbers in fifty years by only 29 per cent., 42 per cent., 79 per cent., 34 per cent. The general conditions have been certainly not unfavourable, and there has been no immigration that could appreciably affect these percentages. Meantime the Whites have risen in numbers by 145 per cent., 128 per cent., 397 per cent., 136 per cent.—aided, except in Missouri, not very greatly by immigration. That they are crowding out the Blacks very rapidly, is too plain for argument.

But not only is the Negro yielding—he is yielding faster and faster. In the first decade (1850-60) his gains were 7 per cent. (not quite), 4 per cent., 32 per cent., 4 per cent.; whereas in twenty years (1880-1900), the gains have been only 5 per cent., 12 per cent., 11 per cent., 7 per cent. The total percentage of gain has been actually less in the two decades than in the one. In these states, then, the doom of the Black is sealed.

In Louisiana, the course of fate is not less sure. In 1850 the Blacks were slightly preponderant—262,271 against 255,491; in 1870, "by reason of slaughterous war," they had increased their lead decidedly, and very greatly in 1880 (483,655 against 454,954); but in 1900 they have fallen far behind—only 650,804 against 729,612. Of this state, then, the redemption is sure and in rapid progress.

Not less manifest is the bleaching of North Carolina. There the coloured population has not doubled itself in fifty years, whereas the White has far more than doubled and, but for the plague of war, would certainly have trebled itself. In the first decade (1850-1860), the Whites and Blacks increased each by not quite 15 per cent.; but in the double decade (1880-1900) the Whites increased by 46 per cent., the Blacks by not quite 18 per cent.

There is quite a similar tale to be told of Tennessee. The great empire of Texas shows a much better record; there the Negro has, indeed, ten-folded himself—largely, of course, by immigration; but the Whites have been multiplied by nearly sixteen. In the first decade the Whites increased by 173 per cent., the Blacks by 312 per cent.; in the last decade the former increased by 39 per cent., the latter by little over 27 per cent. Surely, ambiguity here is quite out of the question.

South Carolina has long had the unenviable distinction of being by far the darkest state in the Union. In 1850 the ratio was twenty-seven to thirty-nine. She suffered ruinously for her secession folly, and for nearly twenty years her White population was practically stationary; in 1870 she had only twenty-nine myriads, and even in 1880 only thirty-nine against sixty of Blacks. But, at last, the tide has begun to turn. The introduction of manufactures promises redemption to the Palmetto State. From 1880 to 1900 the Negroes increased by nearly 30 per cent., but the Whites by 43 per cent. The hue of the state is now almost precisely the same as at the firing on Fort Sumter; she has at last made good the losses of the war.

Georgia is the watermelon paradise of the Black folk. In the first decade they gained greatly on the Whites, advancing their ratio from thirty-eight to fifty-two up to forty-seven to fifty-nine; they still further increased their gain in the next twenty years, till in 1880 the ratio stood seventy-three to eighty-two. But this was the high-water mark; since then it has sunk back slightly to 103 to 118; the Whites are now gaining slowly. This \example is very instructive and very encouraging; for it shows that even a steady gain of the Black over the White continued through a whole generation may yet be turned into a loss in the next generation.

A similar case is presented by Alabama. Here the Negro's increase in the first decade was 27 per cent., the Caucasian's only 23 per cent. The state suffered frightfully during the war, and in 1870 the White population had actually fallen from 526,271 (in 1860) back to 521,384. The Black population was then returned at 475,510, but it was almost certainly over 500,000; for in the preceding decade it rose from 345,109 to 437,770; it must (in 1870) have exceeded or at least equalled the White. But now the Caucasian begins once more to demonstrate his superior life-powers; in the next three decades he nearly doubles his numbers (521,384 to 1,001,152), while the Negro rises only to 827,307. With the establishment of industries in iron, the triumph of the White in Alabama has been assured.

There remain only Arkansas, Florida, and Mississippi. In the hot and moist alluvial lands of these states, the Negro seems likely to make his most stubborn stand against the encroachment of the Caucasian. In these three, he is still multiplying faster than his competitors; in one he is already far ahead in numbers. Must he not, then, ultimately make them completely his own? At first sight it would seem we should answer yes, but closer inspection reveals tendencies that must finally reverse the present conditions. In Arkansas, the White rate has gained rapidly on the Black. In 1850-60 these rates were: White 100 per cent., Black 133 per cent.—one-third more; but in 1890-1900, White 15.4, Negro 18.7, and for the double decade, 1880-1900, they were: White 59, Negro 74. From having been one-third greater, the Negro rate has become about one-fifth greater.

In Florida and Mississippi, the complexion, though still very dusky, is lighter than half a century ago. In the former, the white excess in 1880 was hardly thirteen per hundred Negroes; in 1900 it had risen to twenty-nine. In the great cotton state, the darkest spot on the continent, the Blacks have long been in a seemingly hopeless majority. This amounted to 15,000 in 1850; in 1860 it had risen to 84,000; in 1900 to 266,000. During the last decade the Black increase per thousand was 222, the White only 177. So the situation would seem to be growing steadily worse. However, there is still a ray of hope. The Blacks are still gaining, but at a decreasing rate. From 1850 to 1860 their gain per thousand was 408, but from 1880 to 1900 it was hardly 396; they gained not nearly half so fast. Meantime, the White gain from 1850 to 1860 was only 196 per thousand, whereas from 1880 to 1900 it was 337; while the Black gain fell from 408 to 396, the White rose from 196 to 337. At this rate the White must surely overtake and pass the Black, and another half century will almost certainly see the white numbers greatly preponderant.

The case of Mississippi is especially interesting as showing the prospect of the Blacks at its brightest and of the Whites at its darkest. This state has no large city, but few towns of moderate size, and no manufactures. It is almost exclusively agricultural. Here, then, the conditions that make for the Whites are at their worst; those that make for the Blacks are at their best. Here, if anywhere on our continent, the odds are all for the Negro; and yet, even here, he makes a losing fight—he still has the advantage, but it is slipping from his hands.

We can think of only one objection likely to be raised against the foregoing statistical argument. Some one may say that we have made too little use of the decade 1890-1900, but have preferred the score of years 1880-1900. It is true that the last decade (1890-1900) shows better for the Negro than the preceding (1880-90)—which, indeed, indicated his over-rapid decadence throughout the South. But it seems hardly possible that this showing should not be deceptive. For there is not a single known circumstance that favoured him in his last decade rather than in the preceding. The explanation seems very simple; the coloured returns of the eleventh census were incomplete—not nearly so incomplete as those of the ninth, yet enough so in comparison with the tenth and the twelfth to make the showing for 1880 to 1890 too bad, and for 1890 to 1900 too good. The census reports of the Black population for 1850 and 1860 seem to have been substantially correct; for 1870, extremely incomplete; for 1880, greatly better; for 1890, not nearly so good; for 1900, much better again. For 1870 this is now conceded. Thus, in Mississippi the coloured population increased from 1850 to 1860 by 126,000; from 1870 to 1880 by 206,090; but from 1860 to 1870 by only 6,797 (impossible!). In Kentucky it actually lost (1860-70) 13,957, but gained (1870-80) 49,241; and once more lost (1880-90) 3,380. So, in South Carolina, the Negro gain was (1870-80) nearly 190,000, but (1860-70) only 3,500. So, in Missouri, a gain of 28,463 (1850-60) and of 27,279 (1870-80), but (1860-70) a loss of 432.

The indications of imperfection in the census of 1890 seem clear, though not so glaring as in that of 1870. Such, for instance, are the actual decreases in the Negro population of Kentucky and Missouri, and the extremely small gains (1880-90) of 5,500 (Maryland), 5,000 (Missouri), 4,000 (Virginia), against gains (1890-1900) of 19,500 (Maryland), 11,000 (Missouri), 25,000 (Virginia). Other imperfections, not so glaring, but quite as unmistakable, a careful eye may detect only too frequently. Thus, consider the following returns per 1,000,000 for the census years—

  1860 1870 1880 1890
Insane 765 971 1,833 1,697
Feeble-minded 602 636 1,533 1,526
Deaf and Dumb 408 420 675 659
Blind 403 527 976 805

In all these classes a steady increase up to 1880, then a sudden falling off in 1890.

Once more, the death rate in the non-registration area in 1880 was 13.42 per thousand; in 1880 it was only 10.79. Such an improvement in health, especially in districts mainly rural, is quite incredible. The fact is that for many purposes of comparison the eleventh census is unavailable—a fact that greatly strengthens many of our contentions.

On its face, it is quite too improbable that the Blacks should gain only 138 per thousand in the decennium 1880-90 and then, without any assignable cause, leap to 180 per thousand for the next decennium (1890-1900). Only two things could bring this about—increase of birth rate, decrease of death rate. The former is quite inexplicable and incredible; the latter is contradicted by the facts of the case. It would mean a fall of four in the annual mortality per thousand, and there has been nothing of the kind.

The defect in enumeration, certainly so great in 1870 and almost certainly present in less degree in 1890, is very easy to understand and antecedently probable. For the prejudice against "numbering the people" has been strong since the days of David and of Judas of Galilee, and the Negro flees from the census-taker as from a tax-gatherer, or vaccinator, or even a kodak fiend.

Be this as it may, it is generally admitted that, in all arguments from statistics, the larger the numbers and the longer the space of time, the more trustworthy the indications; in any case then we are more than justified in taking the double decennium (1880-1900) in comparison with the first decade (1850-60); since the census of 1870 is admittedly grossly in error, no other basis of comparison nearly so trustworthy is present.

Herewith then we close the argument. It seems hardly necessary to add that the higher percentage of Negro gain in the North Atlantic and North Central States signifies nothing except that small numbers have been greatly swollen by immigration. It is well known that in these regions the Negro, unfed by immigration, tends swiftly to extinction. Viewed thus from what point of the compass you will, the general movement of the life of the continent is towards the elimination of the African element. We admit that figures may be made to lie, but we have subjected them to no captious cross-examination; we have let them speak for themselves; we have neither forcibly repressed nor forcibly extorted any testimony; their voluntary witness is singularly consistent and unequivocal and wholly irresistible.


It has been proved by the foregoing statistical study, varied in every way and taking every significant fact into consideration, that the Negro is everywhere in the United States yielding and making place for the Caucasian. We might, indeed, have anticipated that such a result would follow infallibly upon exposing the two races to open competition. For the Negro has never voluntarily extended himself beyond his African home; he has never eagerly sought out new habitats, nor readily adapted himself to new environments; whereas the Caucasian has traversed and colonized the earth from the equator to either pole; he has plumbed every abyss; he has scaled every height; he has spied out every secret place: for him no sea has been too wide, no plains too broad, no mountains too high, no sands too hot, no snow too cold, no jungles too dark and deadly. He pits himself against Nature, he forges for himself Achillean armour, he grasps the shield, he shakes the spear, and rushes joyfully to the encounter. Nothing of all this, nothing in any way like aught of this, has the Negro ever done; naught, in our judgement, will he ever do. The massive facts, then, of the geographical distribution of the races give token unmistakable that, in any collision within any but the tropical regions, the Negro must go down before the Caucasian.

This superior vigour, this aggressive vitality need not reveal itself to any mass-measurements; it might hide away in the cells and the finest tissue; it might be not anatomic, but histotomic only. The distinguished surgeon, Dr. Rudolph Matas, as the result of wide observation and careful inquiry, declares that pathological-anatomical peculiarities of the Negro are not recognizable chirurgically; Black and White are sensibly the same.

Nevertheless, broad distinctions are actually present and come to light wherever extensive observations have been made. It is jauntily declared by a great protagonist of the Black man that "physically, he is the equal of the white man; he is as tall and as strong," and such is perhaps the general opinion. There is a fine irony, however, in the fact that precisely these moments in which his equality is so incautiously affirmed are the ones in which he is distinctly inferior. He is in truth neither so tall nor so strong, though vertical inch for inch he is somewhat heavier. It seems needless to copy down table after table to prove these statements. We quote the words of Hoffman, summing up extensive comparisons: "The average stature of the negro is less than that of the white, and the difference, though slight, prevails at all ages." From Gould's "Military Statistics," pp. 461-465, we learn as distinctly as we can learn any such facts, that the Negro is not so strong as the Caucasian; that the mean lifting strength of the Black is very markedly below that of the White at all ages above seventeen, with the exceptions of thirty-one to thirty-four, where the Black excess is nearly five pounds, and of forty-five to forty-nine, where the Black average is 328.7, the White only 325.7—a Black excess of three pounds. Under seventeen the White average is only 250.4, the Black 258.9—another Black excess of 8.5, very considerable and noteworthy, and for seventeen the Black excess is 295-292.8 = 3.2. For all other ages, the White excesses are as follows:

18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26.8 23.6 15 10 13.7 23.6 8.6 15.6
26 27 28 29 30 35-39 40-44 50-
24.1 6.9 13.5 9 1.4 26.8 10.4 24.2

Hence, it appears that up to seventeen the Negro is on the average stronger than the White; he is also stronger in the cases measured from thirty-one to thirty-four and from forty-five to forty-nine, though his advantage is not great; but everywhere else he is markedly not so strong. Of course, it is easy to except to such statistics—to say that the averages are untrustworthy; but it would be very strange if so many distinct and independent indications were all wrong. As the lowest age for soldiers is hardly below sixteen, we see that the Black excels, and only slightly, in only twelve years, the White in twenty-three years up to fifty and in all above, and on the whole very considerably, his excess rising twice to 26.8. The indication, then, is of a more tropical nature in the Black; he attains his maximum sooner, but he maintains it not so long nor so high; and this might certainly have been expected.

Similar is the indication of the respiration. In full vigour the average respiration per minute of Whites, Blacks, Mulattoes are 16.44, 17.75, 19.01; while with impaired vigour the average rates are for Whites 16.84, for Blacks and Mulattoes 20.71. Here this excessive frequency is found at every age, both in health and still more in disease, both for Blacks and still more for Mulattoes. It seems impossible, then, that the indications should be erroneous. On the other hand, the pulse of the White, in vigour and in ailment, is faster than the full Black's, but slower than the Mulatto's; Whites 74.84, 77.21; Blacks 74.02, 76.91; Mulattoes 76.97, 83.12. Here the differences are too slight for emphasis, and we do not know that there is any advantage in a somewhat slower pulse. But what is the meaning of the quicker respiration? It means the decidedly lower lung capacity of the Black. Since the Black weighs more per inch of height than the White, we are prepared to find his chest measurements greater after respiration. These measurements confirm each other. Of 315,620 White soldiers the average girth of chest was 33.42 inches, but of 25,828 coloured soldiers it was 33.69; and this difference in favour of the Blacks maintained itself for all statures. However, the lung capacity or mobility of chest (i.e. the difference between the girth at forced inspiration and forced expiration) is greater in the Whites; in 6,359 Whites the average was 3.24; in 377 Negroes it was 3.23. This difference is too small to be worth noting, but mark you! in the under-weights (100 to 120 pounds) the mobility was far greater in the Blacks (3.33 against 3.15), also in the overweights (180 and more) (3.38 against 3.27); but in the normal weights (120 to 180) it everywhere favoured the Whites. Moreover, these Whites were about an inch taller than the Blacks (67.30 against 66.39) at all ages; their chest girth was nearly half an inch less (32.49 against 32.84), and yet their lung capacity was greater. The indication of stronger lungs seems unmistakable.

At this point it seems necessary to point out that in this extremely important matter of chest mobility, the Negro is not maintaining himself but is perceptibly declining. In 1861-65 the excess favoured the Whites for the ages thirty to thirty-nine, and under twenty; for all other ages it favoured the Blacks, who fell behind only .01 on the general average (3.24 and 3.23). But in 1892-94 it favours the Whites at all ages; and the White excess has increased to .35 (2.93 and 2.58). (Reports of Provost-Marshal General, Vol. I., and of Surgeon General of U.S.A., 1893-95.) The indication is not in itself infallible, but it has great significance in connection with other corroborative evidence.

Lung capacity is not chest mobility, but the two are closely related. Gould's measurements indicate a very decidedly smaller number of cubic inches of air in case of the Negro, and this for all heights and weights. The White excess increases steadily from eight cubic inches (for under-heights, sixty inches) up to fifteen and one-half cubic inches for over-heights (seventy-one inches), but falls back to fourteen and one-half for six-footers. On the other hand, this White excess falls from twenty-five and one-half cubic inches for narrow chests (30 inches) down to two cubic inches for large girths (40 inches); but its uniform presence shows that the excess is a fact, whatever may be the varying size of the fact. Here again the indication is unambiguous that the Negro is short-winded, weak-lunged as compared with his White rival.

This indication is immensely strengthened by combination with another exceedingly important fact. It has been said that the Negro is stouter than the White, at all ages and all statures, weighing more per inch of height. Now this extra weight per vertical inch is considered of all outward signs the best for lung strength and lung soundness. "Are you gaining in weight?" is the all-important question that the physician asks of his tuberculotic patient. The Negro has (or had) here very much outwardly in his favour; the lower height, the heavier build, the greater girth of chest; so important is the single item of weight that it is held on the basis of the broadest induction that even a very slight overplus in heaviness may suffice to counteract effectively a hereditary disposition towards tubercle, while actuaries are agreed that slightness in proportion to age and height greatly determines susceptibility to consumption.

And yet, in spite of all, he is the peculiar victim of tuberculosis, which attacks him not only with great and increasing frequency, but with especial malignance. Of his enormous death rate from lung affections, we have yet to speak. Here we would merely point out the obvious conclusion, that histologically the Negro thus appears inferior to the White man; not only do his tissues offer ready lodgement to the invading bacillus, but they offer far less stubborn and protracted resistance to such inroads when once in progress.

At this point, it seems well to quote the conclusions of Hoffman (pp. 170-171):

"First. The average weight of the colored male of military age, and of colored male and female children, is greater than that of whites of the same classes. This excess in weight prevails irrespective of age, stature, or circumference of the chest.

"Second. Already quoted. (p 217).

"Third. The greater weight and smaller stature of the negro as compared with the white are found to prevail practically the same to-day as thirty years ago. The race has therefore undergone no decided change in respect to these conditions of bodily structure.

"Fourth. The average girth of chest of the negro male of thirty years ago was slightly greater than that of the white, but at the present time the chest expansion of the colored male is less than that of the white. This decrease in the size of the living thorax in part explains the increase in the mortality from consumption and respiratory diseases.

"Fifth. The capacity of the lungs of the negro is considerably below that of the white. This fact coupled with the smaller weight of the lungs (4 oz.) is without question another powerful factor in the great mortality from diseases of the lungs.

"Sixth. The mean frequency of respiration is greater in the negro than in the white. As accelerated respiration indicates a tendency towards disease, the fact just stated fully supports those regarding inferior vital capacity and lesser degree of mobility of the chest.

"Seventh. The mean lifting strength of the white is in excess of that of the negro. The prevailing opinion that the negro is on the whole more capable of enduring physical exercise is therefore disproved." [H.'s "therefore" is quite unwarranted. There is no such necessary connection between strength to lift and strength to endure. However, his conclusion, although illogical, is nevertheless correct, as appears plainly from a large body of other evidence.] "This fully agrees with the facts regarding excessive mortality, which in itself is proof" [or at least indication] "of a lesser degree of physical strength.

"Eighth. The power of vision of the negro is inferior to that of the white, but he is less liable to diseases of the eye, especially color blindness."

In the light of these "conclusions," which accord so perfectly with the great facts of geographical distribution, how is it possible to speak of the Negro as physically equal to the Caucasian?

But not only is this comparative structural weakness clearly indicated, but it is becoming more and more apparent. The marked apparent decline in the chest expansion between 1863 and 1894 (from 3.23 to 2.58), the increasing mortality, the decreasing immunity, the vague but unvarying testimony of general observation—all tell one and the same unambiguous story.


It has been well said by Professor Willcox that the three great causes of race extinction are disease, vice, and profound discouragement. Are these formidable three at work against the American Negroid? It is mainly a matter of statistical evidence. We have indeed few statistics of discouragement, but of vice and disease they greatly abound. Of all statistics those of mortality and vitality are perhaps the most important, the most trustworthy, the most significant, the most suggestive, and the most weirdly fascinating. They fill two gigantic volumes of the twelfth census report, and to them we appeal in the prosecution of our inquiry.

Unfortunately these reports, as wholly trustworthy, do not cover the whole of the United States, but only a very wide registration area, including about 38 per cent. of the total population and about 86.7 per cent. of the urban population. For the rest only an inference, checked on this side and on that, is allowed. However, the general result is affected very little by this undetermined element; and our arguments and conclusions, since they deal with only the large features in the case, are not affected at all.

The first great fact that meets us, is this: The average death-rate of the Negro is not far from double that of the White. For the year 1890 the rates per myriad were: White 196, Coloured 299—a coloured excess of 55 per cent.; for the year 1900 they were: Whites 178, Coloured 296 [38]—a coloured excess of 66 per cent. The rates were almost exactly as five to three! Not only then is the Black dying faster than the White, but his rate exceeds the White rate more and more, having gained 14 per cent. in ten years. The White rate has fallen very markedly—eighteen per myriad in these ten years; the Negro, only three per myriad. Were the whole population considered, it is doubtful whether his rate has fallen at all. Indeed, in cities not in the registration states his rate has actually risen perceptibly, from 309 to 313, whereas the White rate has meanwhile fallen from 189 to 175.

When now we consider the causes of this astonishing mortality, its significance seems greatly enhanced. It was long believed, with more or less reason, that the Negro enjoyed a certain at least partial immunity from some of the most formidable diseases that assail the Caucasian. He was thought less exposed to consumption and malaria, far less to cancer and nervous disorders. But now listen to the tale of the census! In scarlet fever and diphtheria and cancer, the Caucasian still asserts his sad preëminence; his rates per myriad are 120, 459, 667, against the Negro's 26, 320, 480. But in all the others, he is far outstripped. Thus, the rates per million, for Whites and Blacks, are: consumption, 1735 and 4854; pneumonia, 1848 and 3553; diseases of the nervous system, 2137 and 3080; of the urinary system, 998 and 1573; heart diseases and dropsy, 1374 and 2211; typhoid fever, 324 and 675; malarial fever, 65 and 632! We note here especially the fearful prevalence of consumption, an almost infallible index of failing vitality. Still more astonishing is the mortality from nerve-diseases, where we should least expect them—a most interesting side-light on the question of "discouragement." Equally instructive are the numbers 998 and 1573; the sad tale they tell is confirmed by such facts as these: the deaths (in 1900) from diseases affecting female organs of generation were: Whites 2661, Coloured 592. From affections concerned with pregnancy they were: Whites 7816, Coloured 1883. Remember that the former outnumber the latter nearly eight to one; and you perceive that the Coloured death-rate is nearly double the White. Add to the foregoing that the deaths from venereal diseases were: Whites 1030, Coloured 561. At the White rate, this latter should have been 135 only—an excess of 316 per cent.; the Black death rate is over four times as great as the White. All this indicates the destructive prevalence, among the Blacks, of these race-ruining maladies from which they were so long supposed to be comparatively exempt. We observe also that cancer is rapidly marching to the front among the plagues of the Negro—indeed, it already attacks the womb of the Black more frequently than that of the White. Any one of these indications, or any two, or perhaps three, might be misleading; but not the general consensus of all. If evidence has any value at all, there can be no doubt whatever that these figures indicate both a low viability in the Black man and the appalling prevalence of the most race-destructive disorders.

We would not disguise the fact that the last census, while in general so exceedingly gloomy in its omens for the Negro, is yet traversed here and there by some brighter ray. Thus, the city death rate from consumption fell from 6,001 in 1890 to 4,710 in 1900, and the rural from 3,652 to 3,227; especially the first comparison seems very encouraging. But we must remember that in that decade science and art vied in desperate struggle against that disease, which could hardly fail to produce at least temporary notable results, especially in the earlier years of life, where the principal gain was made. During the same period the White urban rate fell from 2,851 to 1,978, or 31 per cent. against the Negro 21.5 per cent.; and the White rural rate from 1,777 to 1,316 or 26 per cent. against the Negro loss of 12 per cent. Meanwhile, also, the White rate for pneumonia has perceptibly fallen everywhere, while the Negro rate has scarcely changed in town (3,469 against 3,480) and has actually risen decidedly in the country (1,767 against 1,583), and in the registration area from 279 to 349!

There is no escape, then, from our conclusion. It is vain to allege excessive infant mortality, unhygienic conditions, and the like as explanations. The huge death rate faces the observer along the whole line and under all circumstances. Thus in the registration area, for 1900, the Negro rate for the various ages showed the following excesses over the White rate:

Ages 0-4 5-14 15-24 25-34 35-44 45-64 65-
Excess (per cent.) 137 139 164 96 89 71 26

While these excesses are greatest up to manhood, they remain very great even up to old age. The relative importance of infant mortality among the Negroes is commonly much exaggerated. In 1900 the number of deaths under five years, per 10,000 deaths at all ages, was: Whites, 3,022; Negroes, 3,422—a comparative excess of only about 13 per cent. It is from 10 to 25 that the Negro offers relatively the richest field to disease and death. The lowered death-rate observed in the cities is referable almost wholly to the earliest years. Thus, in New Orleans, the rates for White and Black for the triennium 1899-1901, as compared with 1889-1891, showed the following gains (unmarked) and losses (marked -) per myriad:

Ages 0-4 5-9 10-19 20-29 30-49 50-69 70-
White -172 -9 -1 -9 -26 -48 -69
Coloured -109 2 26 62 22 57 -635

Here the mortality (per 10,000 Whites) has decreased slightly along the whole line; among the Blacks it has decreased at the ends, but has increased everywhere else—a result extremely significant. Similarly for Washington and Charleston. Once more, the statistics of hospitals, as the Johns Hopkins (Baltimore) and the Charity (New Orleans), show an average death rate of the Blacks nearly double that of the Whites, except in surgical cases. Here the general conditions are practically the same for both races, the duration of treatment averages the same, and the far greater mortality is virtually decisive for the far less vitality of the Negro race.

The very strongest corroboration of our contention is furnished by Surgeon-General O'Reilly in his recent report for the fiscal year, ending June 30, 1903. The death rates of White and Coloured soldiers were 144 and 241 per myriad, respectively, almost exactly in the ratio of three to five—a coloured excess of over 67 per cent. Here the life conditions were sensibly the same; the far higher vitality of the Caucasian appears in the boldest relief.

The question of increase, already discussed, is very intimately connected with the death rate, but equally so with the far less accurately known birth rate; in fact, the rate of growth in numbers is the difference of these two. Evidently, a very high death rate may consist with a rapid increase in numbers, if only the birth rate be high enough; on the other hand, even a high birth rate would bring about little increase, if the death rate should be inordinately high. No one seriously questions the great mortality among the Negroes; but their champions think and hope that this may be made good by extreme fertility. Let us see what this latter would have to be. Since the former is nearly 300 per myriad, in order to maintain the very low rate of growth of 100 per myriad, the latter would have to reach 400. Is this rate a fact? And, if so, is it likely to continue to be a fact? We shall summon all the evidence accessible, both direct and indirect. While nothing like minute exactness is at present attainable, the general purport of the testimony can not, it seems, be mistaken.

The birth and death rates for certain European countries, for the last decade, are as follows (per myriad):

  England and W. Scotland Ireland Denmark Norway Sweden
Births 301 307 230 303 304 272
Deaths 184 188 181 177 165 164
Increase 117 119 49 126 139 108
  Austria Hungary Ger. Emp. Prussia Netherl'd. Belgium
Births 372 405 362 368 327 289
Deaths 271 303 225 221 186 192
Increase 101 102 137 147 141 97
  France Italy Switzerland
Births 222 355 277
Deaths 216 246 190
Increase 6 109 87

In Eastern Europe, says Rubin, the birth rate varied from 450 to 470 for a century (1800 to 1900); but in Western Europe, since 1870, it fell from 342 to 313 (1900).

The determination of this rate in the United States cannot be made with certainty or confidence, owing to the imperfection of the data. Our census reports yield such results as these for the last decade, for the whole United States, according to the analyses of the census:

Average annual excess of births per myriad, 177; average annual number of deaths per myriad, 174; hence, average annual number of births per myriad, 351.

On this result we may perhaps rely so far as to say that the rate lies somewhere between 330 and 370.

Similar analysis yields the following average annual excess of births for native Whites, foreign Whites, and the Coloured (i.e. practically Negroes) in the United States, and in the four grand divisions: Northeastern, Central and Northern, Southern, and Western.

  N.W. F W. C.
United States 195 365 178
Northeastern 38 396 101
Central and Northern 200 360 102
Southern 241 274 191
Western 259 403 2

Here the more rapid multiplication of the Caucasian is indicated under all conditions, with the single startling exception of New England. In the West, the Coloured are mostly Indians.

Not less impressive are these same excesses arranged by States:

  Ala. Ark. Del. D.C. Fla. Ga. Ky. La. Md. Miss. N.C. S.C.
N.W. 276 297 103 132 288 234 209 358 168 258 193 178
F.W. 306 317 310 194 497 240 152 112 175 225 104 110
C. 249 233 73 107 245 225 83 215 92 264 138 167
  Tenn. Tex. Va. W.Va. Ill. Ind. Ia. Kan. Mich. Minn. Mo. Neb.
N.W. 173 387 75 339 228 163 298 216 193 400 263 222
F.W. 230 532 106 252 439 194 310 300 401 534 171 437
C. 136 310 74 196 168 142 62 202 150 26 90 -43
  N.J. N.D. O. Pa. S.D. Wis. Conn. Me. Mass. N.H. N.Y. R.I. Vt.
N.W. 139 353 129 140 299 412 -18 -42 38 -104 89 ... -88
F.W. 398 921 219 368 528 345 425 474 456 585 366 462 232
C. 136 -230 120 138 -241 -146 89 125 174 -150 88 60 184

To be sure, these results are greatly complicated and deeply obscured by immigration and emigration. None of them state the case correctly; but they can not all err the same way, and collectively they exhibit clearly that the Negro is losing ground everywhere in the race for numbers. But these rates furnish us no independent evidence concerning the birth rate. Such, however, we find in the number of births in the census years 1890 and 1900. The returns are certainly incorrect, certainly incomplete; they yield a mean birth rate of only 272—surely too small, leaving a deficiency of 79 or of 28½ per cent. That the enumeration of births should be defective is not at all surprising; but there is no reason to suppose the returns for 1890 less imperfect, and a comparison of the two cannot fail to be instructive:

  U.S. N.E. C.& N. S.W. Conn. Me. Mass. N.H. N.Y. R.I.
1900 272 238 259 315 240 211 240 213 242 243
1890 269 221 268 301 213 176 215 180 233 223
  Vt. Ind. Ill. Ia. Kan. Mich. Minn. Mo. Neb. N.J.
1900 213 249 255 258 258 243 287 260 272 258
1890 183 254 278 263 285 249 302 290 299 253
  N.D. O. Pa. S.D. Wis. Al. Ark. Del. D.C. Fla.
1900 336 231 269 308 274 321 324 247 203 309
1890 365 242 258 318 271 306 343 250 233 287
  Ga. Ky. La. Md. Miss. N.C. Okl. S.C. Tenn. Tex.
1900 321 306 305 263 312 337 337 343 307 329
1890 306 296 298 260 303 301 221 313 308 316
  Va. W.Va. Ariz. Cal. Col. Ida. Mt. Nev. N.M. Or.
1900 303 332 269 183 239 304 244 189 336 204
1890 272 307 172 196 256 266 218 155 330 226
  Ut. Wash. Wy.
1900 352 220 242
1890 312 238 217

These data are inexact; they are bound up with the errors of enumeration, particularly in 1890, but they confirm in general the high fecundity of the American Caucasian everywhere, save in the Northeast. The high rate indicated in the South cannot be due to the Negro. In West Virginia the coloured element is insignificant, yet the return is very large—332; in Kentucky the Negro hardly holds his own in numbers, yet the whole birth rate is 306. In the Carolinas the native Whites have far outrun the Blacks in increase, and the birth numbers are 337,343; whence it seems clear that nothing points to a Negro rate higher than 351—higher than the general average for the Union. But is the Black rate really so high? Despite the prevailing crude opinion, we feel sure that it is sensibly lower and is steadily falling. There is nothing in the history of the Negro to suggest great fecundity. He has never populated his fatherland densely and poured over into the territory of his neighbours. In the West Indies, where birth tables have been kept with some care, there is no token of great fertility. In Alabama, the records since 1888 point to a birth rate among Whites thrice as high, among Blacks only twice as high, as the death rate. In 1890 the births recorded were: Whites 13,631; Blacks 9,955—the highest in six years but one (9,961 in 1893). In this year the populations were as 100 to 83, but the births as 100 to 73. You say that the Black births were not all recorded. Very true, but neither were the White. The excess of deficiency in the Blacks must have been 14 per cent. of the whole, in order to make their rate equal to the Whites'. Maybe these records are not worth the paper they were written on; but can the same be said of the New England records? In Rhode Island, from 1861 to 1893, the excess of deaths over births, among the Negroes, was 18; in Connecticut from 1881 to 1893 the same excess was 272; in Massachusetts in 1888 it was 68. "... we must conclude, however reluctantly (sic!), that the race is not self-sustaining in this latitude" (Dr. Fisher, Registrar of Vital Statistics, Rhode Island, quoted by Hoffman). Similarly Dr. Snow, Registrar of Providence; similarly Appolino, Registrar of Boston (both quoted by Hoffman). We could go on massing such evidence, but it may all be scouted as irrelevant, since the question is not about the Negro in the North, but in the South. However, it is precisely in the North, especially the Northeast, that his numbers are increasing, of course by immigration, faster and faster; if, then, he "is doomed to extinction" there, his numbers elsewhere must suffer corresponding depletion.

There is yet another and more satisfactory way of attacking this problem of the birth rate—not a direct, but an indirect one. Says the great statistician, Marcus Rubin, in his paper on "Population and Birth Rate," read before the British Association at Bradford, September, 1900: "Quite generally it may be remarked that a large birth rate will crowd the age-groups corresponding to childhood comparatively to what would result from a small birth rate. It is also clear that, when the adults produce a numerous offspring, the latter will, other things being equal, constitute a larger proportion of the whole population than if it were less numerous."

Rubin has Denmark in mind, and western Europe;—he is not dreaming of the Gulf States. Let us apply this common-sense principle to the case in hand. Here is a table of the per thousands of the population at various ages, native White and Black. We take the native White, since immigrants are generally of full age, and we are now concerned with the general fertility of Caucasian natives and not of foreigners; of the latter, it is confessedly very high.

    1880 1890 1900
Under 1 year N.W. 33 30 30
  N. 34 23 28
From 1 to 4 years N.W. 123 112 110
  N. 131 111 109
From 5 to 9 years N.W. 144 136 133
  N. 154 145 136
Total under 10 years N.W. 300 278 273
  N. 319 284 273

Here the situation is revealed with great clearness. We see that both in White and in Black the race is aging; extreme youth is becoming less and less conspicuous. But the diversities are broadly marked. In babes, the Blacks fall behind by two per thousand of their total; in children from one to four years, they again fall behind, but only one per thousand; in children from five to nine they excel by three per thousand; in the grand total of children under ten, they exactly equal the native Whites. This record of itself clearly indicates a failing fecundity in the Blacks; the younger, the fewer, comparatively.

Still more clearly is this seen, on comparing the earlier record of 1880. Then the Black youth surpassed the White relatively at all ages—by one, by eight, by ten, and in the grand total by nineteen. All this superiority has been lost in twenty years. It seems hard to imagine a more impressive record. High mortality among infants will not explain this, especially it will not explain the loss in the score of years, nor the relative scarcity of the very young. [39]

But another fact is illuminative. The chief statistician, William C. Hunt, remarks (Population, Part II., p. lviii.): "The decrease in the relative proportion of children among the negro element is due for the most part to the greater infant mortality of the negro race as compared with the native white population, although it may be due in part to the decrease in the proportion of negro women who are or have been married, for each age-group except that from 15 to 19 years, as shown by the statistics of conjugal condition for 1890 and 1900." We have just observed that the first explanation does not explain. "Greater infant mortality" might cause a smaller "relative proportion of children among the Negro element," both in 1880 and in 1900; but it could not cause a "decrease in the relative proportion" from 1890 to 1900, unless that mortality was not only great, but actually becoming greater. But such is not the fact; if it were, it would mean ruin to the Negro race. On the contrary, it is precisely in these years of infancy that the mortality has been reduced. Nor could even a huge mortality, extending up to the tenth year, of itself bring about the relatively small number of babes under one year. It is the second fact, which we have italicized, that throws light on the situation. Except very young girls, whose marriages are largely transient or nominal, the Negro women are beginning to shun marriage. This is a part of the general moral and social declension, which no unbiased observer of the race can fail to notice. Here are the numbers per thousand, male and female, of the single and married and widowed, of those over fifteen years of age, in 1890 and 1900:

    1900 1890       1900 1890
Single (M) 392 398   Single (F) 299 300
Married (M) 540 555   Married (F) 537 546
Widowed (M) 58 43   Widowed (F) 154 147
And for native Whites:
Single (M) 397 401   Single (F) 310 306
Married (M) 549 554   Married (F) 577 582
Widowed (M) 45 40   Widowed (F) 106 107

The fall from 546 to 537 is not large—only 9; but it must be increased by the increase 7 of those returning themselves as "widows," of which the number, 154, is excessive, and by the excess (3) of divorcees, making altogether an increase of about 2 per cent. of the female population, who decline to produce their kind legitimately. It is impossible to interpret this otherwise than as a sign of moral and social deterioration, which Nature cannot fail to punish promptly by a diminishing birth rate.

It is also seen that the White ratio of the married women has fallen slightly, from 582 to 577—about half as fast as the Black, the number of the single increasing from 306 to 310. Undoubtedly, the growing determination of the White woman to be a man—to compete with a man in all forms of activity—has sensibly reduced the marriage rate, and therewith the birth rate of the Caucasian, and will yet further reduce it—a result we must deplore; but there is here no sign of deterioration, as in case of the Black woman. In her case it is attested freely by the more respectable Negroes themselves. Ask such a one to recommend some "nice coloured girl" as a domestic, and she will probably reply frankly that she knows of none, that they are altogether become unprofitable, that they are scandalously and outrageously unchaste, that there is none that doeth good—no, not one. At this point we speak from personal knowledge. In such statements, there is no doubt considerable exaggeration; but they are largely and increasingly correct. Even Professor Dubois, the ablest of Afro-Americans, confesses that about one-fifth of the Negro families belong to the lowest class—"below the line of respectability, living in loose sexual relationship," and so on. "Laziness and promiscuous sexual intercourse are their besetting sins." He is reporting on the Negroes of Farmville, Va. (Department of Labour Bulletin, January, 1898, p. 37.)

Much somberer colours must be used in depicting the conditions in larger towns. He found about 15 per cent. belonging to the higher class—a percentage that wider investigation would hardly maintain. In another connection the same stern prophet declares: "Unless we conquer our present vices, they will conquer us. We are diseased; we are developing criminal tendencies, and an alarmingly large percentage of our men and women are sexually impure."

Entirely confirmatory of our contentions are the results of the intensive studies of Professor Dubois. Thus he finds that the average Negro family in Philadelphia numbers 3.18, but little more than one child to the couple. The Mongrel record is even worse. Of thirty-three families (four White husbands, twenty-nine White wives), the average size was 2.9; there seem to have been thirty-five children in all. This painstaking sociologist admits: (1) "That a tendency to much later marriage than under the slave system is revolutionizing the Negro family and incidentally leading to much irregularity." (2) "There is, nevertheless, still the temptation for young men and women under forty to enter into matrimony before their economical condition warrants it." (3) "Among persons over forty, there is a marked tendency towards single life." (4) "The very large number of widowed and separated points to grave physical, economical, and moral disorder" (op. cit., p. 70).

Among college-bred Negroes, presumably by far the best class, Dubois finds 491 couples represented by 1,081 children, of whom 877 survive, 982 by 887. This number may yet be increased somewhat by more births; but it will also be decreased by deaths of the young, so that the total of the next propagative generation will very improbably reach the number of the parents, 982.

Once more, consider this table of the percentages in families of one, two to six, seven to ten, eleven and more in the United States in general, and in the Negro population of a number of cities, as Atlanta, Nashville, Cambridge:

  1 2 to 6 7 to 10 11 and more
U.S. 3.63 73.33 20.97 2.07
N. 4.75 79.85 15.22 .18

It is seen that the small families (Negro) greatly preponderate. Of the 79.85 per cent., nearly one-fourth (19.17 per cent.) were families of only two (op. cit., p. 167).

"For several decades to come, the average size of the Negro family will decrease until economic well-being can keep pace with the demands of a rising standard of living" (op. cit., p. 166). We have italicized this sentence, for it pronounces the doom of the Negro.

As the standard of living rises, as competition sharpens, his economic "well-being" will find it harder and harder to "keep pace," his family will shrink more and more, his race will dwindle faster and faster into insignificance.

A striking corroboration of our results surprises the reader of Professor C. H. Crogman's work, "The Remarkable Advancement of the Afro-American," at Chapter XIII, on "Mortality." Therein Professor Harris, of Fisk University, reports an intensive study of the Nashville Negro, whose circumstances are at least comparatively favourable. In 145 families he found 649 persons, an average of not quite 4½; hence, he yields the contention that the Negro is "prolific." "The excessive mortality" he found "due largely and perhaps altogether, to constitutional diseases." "Pulmonary consumption is the 'destroying angel.'" "Thirteen suffer from scrofula." "More white people die from contagious diseases and local diseases than colored; while more colored people die from constitutional diseases than white." The "crimes of mothers," he found "also a fruitful reason of the slow rate of increase in the colored population. This state of affairs is not confined to Nashville. It is true of nearly all our large Southern cities; and whether we like it or not, the hard fact remains that the enormous death rate among us, together with our small birth rate, is one of the signs of the times that, unless our home life be radically changed, the Negro problem in America may be ultimately solved by the extinction of the Negro." And more to the same effect.

Such is the state of case, as attested by a professor in the best-known coloured university, among a populace that have dwelt for a whole generation in the shadow of this noted seminary. House-to-house investigation tells everywhere the same story. Thus, in 1901, as appears from the "concrete study" embodied in the Master's Dissertation of William Wilson Elwang, there were 34 births in a Negro population of 1,916 (Columbia, Mo.)—17 per thousand against a death rate of 24 per thousand. The small family average was almost precisely the same as in Nashville. There were only 161 children under 6 years of age, and 60 married couples were childless! The interpretation has already been suggested in the foregoing quotations.

From all of this it is clear, not only that the coloured birth rate is low and is falling, but why it is low, and why it is falling. It is almost impossible that it should long remain so much as thirty-five per thousand per annum, or even thirty-four or thirty-three. It seems certainly descending towards thirty—that is, 300 births per myriad yearly. But the present death rate is 296 per myriad; it fell only three, from 299 to 296, in the decade from 1890 to 1900; it actually rose from 308 to 313 in the cities of the non-registration area. Thus it appears certain that the birth and death rates of the Negro cannot continue very far apart, that they are steadily approaching, and that without some strange reversal of present tendencies, the birth rate must ere long fall below the death rate in all but a very few districts, and at no distant period even in them. In all likelihood these tendencies will be rather strengthened than weakened with advancing years, and there are those now living who will actually see the Afro-American moving rapidly towards extinction. But even at the present rate, he must shrink swiftly in importance; for the census analyst admits that even in the registration area the death rate of the Negro is about ten per thousand greater than that of the foreign White, and about thirteen per thousand greater than that of the native White. Since his birth rate can hardly, in the extremest cases, exceed the native White's, much less the foreigner's, it follows that both must gain and are gaining on him, at least ten per thousand yearly. Regard it, then, as you will, there is no escape from our general conclusion, which faces us from the whole circle of statistical fact.


We pass now, formally, to the second grand cause of the Negro's race declension—namely, his vice. The general fact is a matter of the most common observation, but it is also witnessed unimpeachably by the records of the courts. Here is how the case stands in the census of 1890. The White population was then almost exactly seven and one-half times the Black. The prisoners in the United States, June 1, 1890 were: Whites 57,310, Blacks 24,277. In proportion to numbers, the Black prisoners should have been 7,642, but they were more than thrice as many; the Black appears more than thrice as criminal as the White. This, however, is not nearly the whole truth. The list of Caucasian crimes swells chiefly in the Northeast, where foreigners most and Negroes least abound. In the various grand divisions of the country, the record comes out far more clearly. Thus, in the North Atlantic, there were in prison: Whites 26,182, Blacks 2,037. Out of every myriad of population there were 155 Blacks; out of every myriad of prisoners there were 722 Blacks; his prison rate was nearly five times as high as the Caucasian—this, too, in a region of urban population, largely immigrant. In the North Central there were 2,738 Black prisoners and 17,027 White; the Negro furnished not 2 per cent. of the population, but nearly 14 per cent. of the crime; he was more than seven times as criminal as the White.

In the South Atlantic States, he furnished 8,863 prisoners against 2,544 Whites; not 37 per cent. of the population, but over 77 per cent. of the trespass; proportionally, he offended almost six times as often as the Whites. In the South Central the prison record stood: Whites 5,604, Blacks 10,381; the populations are as 6,828 to 3,171; the Black appears nearly four times as criminal as the White.

It is often urged that the comparative criminality of the Negro in the South is exaggerated. The White transgressor has friends, money, and social position and manages to evade the law; the Negro is poor, friendless, and outcast and falls an easy victim. In a measure, this may be true—we are ashamed to confess; but it cannot alter the general fact, only its degree. On the other hand, very many offences of Black against Black must go unchallenged by the law, both from apathy and from fear. These two considerations, very likely, about balance each other. It is thoroughly decisive, however, that the Negro appears a greater criminal in the North and East, where there is no prejudice against him than in the South, where the prejudice is supposed to be so strong. If we compare the states, we may see this even more clearly. In Massachusetts, the prisoners were: Whites 5,157, Blacks 161. Since the latter formed not 1 per cent. of the population, their criminality appears over three times as great as the White; yet they are, presumably, the very elect of the race—the best Negroes in the world. In New York, there were 10,745 White prisoners and 723 Black; but the latter numbered only 117 per myriad; hence, their criminality was six times as great as the White. In Pennsylvania there were 5,749 White prisoners and 738 Black; but the latter formed little over 2 per cent. of the population; hence, again, their criminality was six times that of the White. In West Virginia there were 320 Whites in prisons and 130 Blacks; these latter formed not 5 per cent. of the population; they were seven times as criminal as the White. Washington City is the Mecca of the Negro; there, if anywhere on earth, he should show himself at his best. What is the prison record? Whites 138, Blacks 358; yet he numbers only 328 per thousand—he is more than five times as criminal as the Whites. In Ohio there were 481 Black prisoners, representing only 247 per myriad of the population, and 2,415 Whites; again, an eightfold criminality. In Michigan there is no prejudice against the Negro, but rather for him, and how stands the court record? He numbers only 73 per myriad of the population, yet he furnishes 141 prisoners against 1,998 Whites—this time a criminality tenfold! In the South his record is seemingly better. In Louisiana the Blacks numbered one-half, but the population of the prisons was 367 Whites, 1,238 Blacks; the latter were not quite fourfold criminal. In Alabama the population-ratio was 5,516 to 4,484, but the prison-ratio was 422 to 2,096. On dividing the former by the latter, we find the crime-ratio of six to one. In Mississippi, the population-ratio was 4,342 to 5,658; the prison-ratio was 119 to 1,058; their quotient, the crime-ratio, was over six to one.

In Virginia the ratio is over six, in South Carolina under six, in Indiana nearly five, in Georgia over eight, in Illinois nearly nine.

Thus it appears that the Negro everywhere, many times oftener than the White man, falls into prison; but in the North still oftener than in the South, and not only is he relatively more frequently criminal in the North—he is absolutely so. For, to judge from the court records, the South is in general more law-abiding than the North.

It may be useful here to give a table of the criminality of the five grand divisions in the census years 1880 and 1890, giving the number of prisoners per million of population, with the increase of each division in ten years;

    1890 1880 Increase
United States   1,315 1,169 146
North Atlantic   1,624 1,425 199
South Atlantic   1,288 1,043 245
North Central   888 862 26
South Central   1,466 1,250 216
Western   2,221 2,199 22

Here the great North Central appears by far most law-abiding. The reason is, the criminality is raised by foreigners in the East, by the Negro in the South, by the adventurer in the West. On comparing the total number of prisoners North and South with the total populations, we find that there were in the South about six prisoners per myriad of Whites, and twenty-nine prisoners per myriad of Blacks; whereas in the North were twelve prisoners per myriad Whites, and sixty-nine prisoners per myriad Blacks. On going from South to North, we find the prison numbers exactly doubled among the Whites, but much more than doubled among the Blacks.

But our tables can teach us still more. The increase from 1880 to 1890 is worth attention. In the West and the North Central region, it was only slight—twenty-two and twenty-six per million; but both in the South Central and the South Atlantic, it was very great—216 and 245 per million. To whom was it due? To the Black, or to the White? In part to both, but far more to the former. The White increase was only seven per cent., the Black was twenty-seven per cent. Worse than this, however, in the North the White increase was hardly five per cent., but the Black increase was thirty-five per cent.—whence it appears that in criminality the Negro, especially the educated Northern Negro, is striding forward in seven-league boots.

Closely akin to this latter fact is still another—the still higher criminality of the Mulatto. In the whole United States, the pure Blacks outnumber the mixed breeds about six to one; in the North Atlantic division, about twenty to six, or three to one; in the South Atlantic, nearly seven to one; in the North Central, over two to one; in the South Central, about six to one; in the West, under two to one. Now we have already seen that precisely where the Mulattoes most abound, the Negro is most criminal. Still more definitely, we have these facts of the eleventh census (1890). Of Blacks there were in city prisons 898 pure, 170 mixed—five to one; in workhouses, 1,004 pure, 333 mixed—three to one; in juvenile reformatories, 1,418 pure, 512 mixed—three to one; leased out (not in penitentiaries), 1,700 pure, 295 mixed—five to one; altogether, in penitentiaries 10,884 pure, 3,383 mixed—only three to one; whence, it appears, that the pure Black exceeds the Mulatto more in numbers than in criminals—that is, the Mulatto is the greater offender. This result accords with the African proverb quoted by Livingstone: "A god made the white; who made the black I know not; but surely the devil made the mongrel."

The champions of the oppressed will have much to say in avoidance of the foregoing—nothing, however, that is both forceful and relevant. They may urge that the offences of the Negro are mainly trivial, that he is not to be judged too harshly for his penchant towards henroosts; that such a little thing as a chicken must not be allowed to separate him from civilization and Christianity. But the facts look the other way. The great crimes are the ones that swell his list; his slight offences are mainly against his own kith and kin, and very frequently go unpunished. The court records, as in Alabama, [40] show that he aspires to the heights of felony. He is murderous, he excels in arson, he forges with a will. Of the crime of all crimes he enjoys almost the proud monopoly, and he plies it in spite of the swiftest, surest, savagest of all possible penalties. His defenders have here excogitated a most ingenious plea. This crime against woman is not a reversion to barbarism; it is not a yielding to ungovernable and brutal lust—oh, no! It is, they say, a deep-studied revenge; it is an attack by the oppressed on the race of the oppressor. In the person of his victim, the Black avenger would hurl defiance and desecration at the whole tribe of his persecutors. We are not concerned to refute such nonsense. He that can find satisfaction in thus swapping off bestiality for diabolism, let him find it. We merely note, in passing, that the North has recently shown itself as little tolerant as the South of such assaults on the integrity of the race. To be sure, there are many crimes, and many of appalling proportions, from which the Negro does greatly abstain. He does not corrupt legislatures, he does not thwart justice, he does not evade the Constitution, he does not defy the acts of Congress, he does not frame tariff schedules, he does not assume divine vice-gerency, he does not water stock and crush competition and servilize millions, he does not even buy and sell franchises, nor divide rake-offs, nor stuff ballot boxes, nor muzzle the press, nor indulge in other such venialities. But is there any one that does not know the reason? The Negro is not equal to these iniquities. There fail him both ability and opportunity. But if any one doubts for an instant that, according to the measure of his might, he has improved and will improve whatever stray chance may fall in his way, in fashion that would even make St. Louis blush, we would respectfully recommend to such a Nathanael a study of Presidential nominating conventions or any faithful history of Reconstruction.

But has not the last decade abated the "criminal tendencies" which Professor Dubois so deplores? On the contrary. Complete reports have not yet been issued, but the general facts lie open to view. The annual summaries of the Chicago Tribune show that the Negro maintains his lead easily. In 1902, there were judicial hangings 144: Negroes 85, Whites 56, Indians 2, Chinaman 1; for murder 133, for rape 9; South 101, North 43. There were lynchings, 96: Negroes 86, Whites 9, Indian 1; for murder 41, rape 30; South 87, North 9. The number of lynchings has, indeed, steadily decreased from 235 in 1892 to 96 in 1902—and not strangely. Atrocious as such forms of rudimentary justice undoubtedly are, and severely reprehensible, to be condemned always and without any reserve, it cannot be denied that they have a certain rough and horrible virtue. Great is the insult they wreak on the majesty of the law and brutalizing must be their effect upon human nature, yet they do strike a salutary terror into hearts which the slow and uncertain steps of the courts could hardly daunt. In witness stands the fact that lynch-lightning seldom strikes twice in the same district or community. Such frightful incidents tend to repeat themselves at wide intervals, both of time and of place.

Finally, the whole family of facts here assembled, especially those that establish the greater and faster growing criminality of the Northern Negro, show clearly that education is not the cure for his ills. Generation after generation of coddling and sympathy in the North has not effaced a single racial trait nor raised by a single notch the average character, moral or mental or physical, of hundreds of thousands of the pick of their race. Nearly forty years of devoted and enthusiastic effort to elevate and educate the Southern Negro lie stretched out behind us in a dead level of failure. We grant freely and gladly that there are exceptions, rare and remarkable enough. But that the average of the Negro, both moral and physical, has fallen and is falling measurably under all endeavours to lift him up, is a fact that shines out clear in the light of the foregoing statistics.

But not only is it a fact—it is precisely what might have been expected. A culture, a civilization, to be helpful and healthful, must proceed from within and not from without. It must be an internal evolution, not an external imposition. The impulse may, indeed, be given by contact; it may proceed from another; but it must strike upon a nature prepared, responsive, and kindred. It must release energies and potencies already present and in high tension—it cannot create them; it may be an occasion, it cannot be a cause. You may ignite a match by friction, but not a piece of chalk.

The civilization of any people is the slow and toilsome growth of centuries, an unfolding of the people's spirit itself. Its virtue, its essence lies in this very fact. How then shall such a product be imposed upon an alien and inferior race? They cannot receive it; they can put it on only as an outer garment; it can never become truly theirs, the efflorescence of their own souls. Moreover, in such foreign vesture they are clumsy and constrained; they cut but a sorry and even ridiculous figure, like David in the armour of Saul. Well for them if it prove not to be a shirt of Nessus.

These propositions we make no attempt to argue formally, for that would be remote from our present purpose. We rest our case on the facts and figures already submitted. But we must observe, in conclusion, that the doctrine just enounced is by no means a novelty. Nearly two thousand years ago, "The Apostle" addressing the Corinthians declared: "Even so the things of God none knoweth, save the Spirit of God.... Now a man of soul receives not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he can not know them, because they are spiritually discerned."




  [1] For detailed proof of these propositions, see the following chapters.

  [2] For minuter treatment of this point, see the following chapters.

  [3] For documentary proof that the utmost extreme of miscegenation has been zealously preached, and on quasi-scientific grounds, see infra, pp. 71, 72, 126-9.

  [4] As to the natural effect of such propaganda on the Negroes themselves, let the present epidemic of crime and lynching bear witness.

  [5] Many more in Massachusetts; yet hear the reluctant admission of the Negro's ardent friend, Dr. Henry M. Field: "The whole race (in Massachusetts) has remained on one dead level of mediocrity." ("Sunny Skies and Dark Shadows," p. 144). Statistics, however, tell a story far less favourable still. See infra, pp. 249f.

  [6] The following example, in itself not uninteresting, has fallen under our own observations: At Columbia, Mo., in a well-known and highly reputed family, the father exemplifies the brunette and the mother the blonde type, each in its extremest form; the son repeats the father, and a daughter the mother, exactly; the other daughter is an exquisite châtaine, the mean of her parents. Compare Mendel's formula for the transmission of parental qualities, which DeVries has now made famous.

  [7] For the details of this argument, see infra, pp. 46f. et passim.

  [8] Even as a contribution, this labour was never necessary, and is notoriously becoming more and more dispensable, even where it is not already turning into an impediment.

  [9] Established in the most conclusive fashion by the patriotic and scholarly Crogman's "Progress of a Race" (1902). On glancing through the long gallery of notable Negroids therein assembled, one perceives instantly that the Mulatto is greatly predominant.

  [10] For a fuller statement of some particulars, see Chapter Four.

  [11] This misfortune should, of itself, be sufficient to settle the question of social intercourse. The emanation is from certain overabundant sudorific glands.

  [12] See infra, Chapter Six.

  [13] Thus, the proverb: Un sac qui est vide ne peut pas rester debout, becomes: Sac qui vide pas connait ete debout.

  [14] But Lapouge (L'Aryen): "That immense realm reverting to barbarism."

  [15] Nor do we see how any one can blame them. Especially the intelligent Mulatto recognizes, and justly, that social equality, with its necessary corollary, intermarriage, is the key of the whole position. Without it, he sees clearly that his race is doomed. From his point of view, the denial of such equality appears as a colossal injustice, an immeasurable wrong. And unless he be racially inferior, he is incontrovertibly right.

  [16] We are not willing to deface these pages with passages quoted in proof of the fact that miscegenation has been advocated openly and repeatedly in the highest quarters, and doubtless in all good faith and good will. But he who has any doubt on this point may consult the Edinburgh Review of 1827, pp. 390-394; Lyell's "Second Visit to the United States," 1849, Vol. II., p. 216; The Fourth of July Speech of Mr. Wendell Phillips (1863); the speeches of Mr. Theodore Tilton, sometime editor of The Independent; but especially the collection of pamphlets entitled "Miscegenation," by D. G. Croly and others (1864), wherein "not only the propriety, but the necessity, of the marriage of Black and White" is argued passionately. Abominable as such doctrines may sound, they flow inevitably from the principles even at this date commonly accepted in both Englands, and they can be proved wrong only by proving that our present contentions are right.

  [17] Mongrelization of the world has, in fact, been ably and honestly, however mistakenly, championed on quasi-scientific grounds by distinguished ethnologists—a grave error in science, but no moral reproach. With such must be ranged the mighty journal that "stands alone in its field," exponent of the highest civic life yet unfolded on this continent. In the edition of Dec. 26th, 1895, in commenting upon a conservative letter from Clinton, Iowa, the Editor remarks: "The laws forbidding honorable intermarriage between the two races are the guarantee of the perpetuation of this savage atrocity [lynching]; their abolition, the first step on the part of the whites towards its disappearance." Language could hardly be more explicit. Of course, such "abolition" would be tantamount to official invitation to such "honorable intermarriage"; otherwise it would be nugatory: he who throws wide open his gates, thereby bids come in.

  [18] See infra, p. 100.

  [19] Hippolytus, Philosophoumena, V. 8.

  [20] That they are a total inversion of the truth is proved elaborately in Chapter Five.

  [21] Day teaches day. Until very recently our meagre information touching Japanese brain weight did not extend beyond the 130 examples reported by Doenitz (1874), Taguchi (1881), Suzuki (1892), of which the average was about 1,350 grams. Now, however, in the Medical Journal, Tokio, XXII, Nos. 1, 2, 8, 1903, and in Neurologia, I, No. 5, 1903, Prof. K. Taguchi publishes measurements of 597 subjects; 421 males, 176 females. Of these, 374 adult males yielded an average of 1,367 grams, between the extremes 1,063 and 1,790; 150 adult females, an average of 1,214 grams, ranging from 961 to 1,432. Per centimetre of stature the brain weight of the Japanese is almost exactly the same as that of the Germans (Bischoff, Marchand), Russians (Giltscnenko), Czechs (Matiegka), of the same height. "To recapitulate, the brain of the Japanese grows more slowly during infancy and early youth than it does in the European. In the adult the brain-weight compares favorably with that of Europeans of similar stature, and it may be shown to be superior in this respect to other races of the same general stature." (E. A. Spitzka in Science, Sept. 18, 1903, p. 371-373).

Even then if the Japanese should outstrip all rivals, it would in no degree shake the arguments or conclusions of this volume, nor ground the least hope for the African; for neither historically nor (still less) anatomically is there any parallelism between the two races.

  [22] To be sure, Prof. Ripley speaks repeatedly of three races (see Pop. Sc. Mon. LI, p. 202): Teutonic, Alpine, Mediterranean; but both the first and the last are long-faced and long-headed, and he regards the two as having a common origin, "a dolichocephalic Africanoid type in the stone age" (LII, p. 314). "It is highly probable that the Teutonic race of northern Europe is merely a variety of this primitive, long-headed type of the stone age, both its distinctive blondness and its remarkable stature having been acquired in the relative isolation of Scandinavia through the modifying influences of environment, and of natural selection" (LII, p. 312), "The European races" are thought, "as intermediate between the extreme primary types of the Asiatic and the negro races respectively" (LII, p. 306).—But the Chinese are long-heads.—Sharply opposed to Ripley's and commanding wider scientific assent, is the view of Lapouge, set forth in L'Aryen.

  [23] The semi-civilization of this "empire," which never gave any promise of history, culminated centuries ago; in more recent years its descent has been rapid. Concerning Haiti, see supra, p. 57. In a recent number of The Ethical Record, Dr. B. returns with ardour to this subject, repeating his earlier statements, without, however, any significant additions.

  [24] See supra pp. 92-96.

  [25] To this truth, see various testimonies, pp. 149, 154, et passim.

  [26] "The tendency of human multiplication is such that the most highly cultured families tend to disappear ... Educational influences ... are superficial as compared to Hereditary causes."

Franz Boas, Pro. Am. Ass. for the Adv. of Science, 1894, p. 325.

  [27] But the Boston Negroid still swears by the classics and logarithms, and regards the recent change of front as little less than a betrayal and surrender. Similarly, but with recognition of the merits of Mr. Washington's idea, Dubois, in his The Souls of Black Folk, and the sympathetic reviewer in The Nation. In this controversy we think that Dubois and Washington are both right and both wrong; but the higher and deeper right, as well as wrong, belongs to the former.

  [28] Hear the testimony of the ablest of Negroids, Professor W. E. B. Dubois, in his admirable sociologic study, "The Philadelphia Negro":

"How now has this exclusion been maintained? In some cases by the actual inclusion of the word 'white' among qualifications for entrance into certain trade unions. More often, however, by leaving the matter of color entirely to local bodies, who make no general rule, but invariably fail to admit a colored applicant except under pressing circumstances. This is the most workable system and is adopted by nearly all trade unions" (p. 128). "To repeat, then, the real motives back of this exclusion are plain: A large part is simple race prejudice, always strong in working classes and intensified by the peculiar history of the Negro in this country. Another part, and possibly a more potent part, is the natural spirit of monopoly and the desire to keep up wages ... Moreover, in this there is one thoroughly justifiable consideration that plays a great part: namely, the Negroes are used to low wages—can live on them, and consequently would fight less fiercely than most whites against reduction" (p. 129).... "The Negroes of the city who have trades either give them up and hire out as waiters and laborers, or they become job workmen and floating hands, catching a bit of carpentering here or a little brickwork or plastering there at reduced wages" (p. 130). It is needless to accumulate such depositions.

  [29] "Fully ninety-four per cent. have struggled for land and failed, and half of them sit in hopeless serfdom. For these there is one other avenue of escape towards which they have turned in increasing numbers, namely, migration to town ... this is a part of the rush to town." Dubois, The Souls of Black Folk, p. 162. "The crop-lien system which is depopulating the fields of the South is not simply the result of shiftlessness on the part of Negroes" (p. 170). Here, again, evidence may be supplied in any measure desired. From the census reports it appears that in the North the same tendency is quite as strong, if not even stronger.

  [30] For a minute study of birth and death rates, see infra, pp. 225-49.

  [31] To be sure, this charge holds in only very modified degree of the modern sanitated city.

  [32] What a note of infinite melancholy sounds through "The Souls of Black Folk," the finest product of the Mulatto mind. In his "The College-bred Negro," the same author, Dubois, has put the question as to the future of his race to hundreds of these representative Negroes and recorded their answers. It is easy to perceive that the hopefulness of the majority is quite artificial, based on some religious faith or moral trust, and that the really weighty answers are given by the hopeless minority.

  [33] Events in the North, still fresh in the mind of the reader, illustrate these statements profusely. That the Negro is steadily losing ground industrially as well as otherwise, is witnessed unequivocally in the most diverse quarters. Thus Dubois, "The Philadelphia Negro," p. 43: "It cannot be denied that the main results of the development of the Philadelphia Negro since the war have on the whole disappointed his well-wishers.... Not only do they feel that there is a lack of positive results, but the relative advance compared with the period just before the war is slow, if not an actual retrogression; an abnormal and growing amount of crime and poverty can justly be charged to the Negro; he is not a large taxpayer, holds no conspicuous place in the business world or the world of letters, and even as a workingman seems to be losing ground." So, too, in Chicago: "There are a few in the trades, as carpenters, painters, etc., but these are decreasing.... There is a large class of unemployed Negroes in the city, numbering several hundreds. Could a careful census of this class be taken, it would no doubt be found to reach into thousands." Monro N. Work, in American Journal of Sociol., Vol. 6, p. 206. Everywhere throughout the South this expulsive process has already proceeded far and stiff proceeds apace. In the foregoing, the italics are ours.

  [34] The late Professor E. D. Cope recommended the deportation of the Negro.

  [35] Witness Schweinfurth, one of the carefulest observers and highest authorities: "If we could at once grasp and set before our minds facts that are known (whether as regards language, race, culture, history, or development) of that vast region of the world which is comprehended in the name of Africa, we should have before us the witness of an intermingling of races which is beyond all precedent. And yet, bewildering as the prospect would appear, it remains a fact not to be gainsaid, that it is impossible for any one to survey the country as a whole without perceiving that, high above the multiplication of individual differences, there is throned a principle of unity (he refers to the autochthonous black stock), which embraces well-nigh all the population" (Heart of Africa, Vol. I., p. 313).

  [36] More probably 260.

  [37] More probably 365.

  [38] These are the "uncorrected rates" in the registration area. The rates corrected—on the basis of age distribution—are still far more ominous for the Negro. They are, in the entire registration area: for native Whites having one or both parents foreign, 187; for native Whites having both parents native, 166; for Negroids, 347.

"One is warranted, then, in saying that according to the best evidence obtainable the death rate of the negroes in the registration area is nearly double that of the whites in the same area."

"On these assumptions the computed death rate of the non-Caucasians in 1890 was 34.4 and in 1900, 34.2; of the whites in 1890, 19.5, and in 1900, 17.4. It seems not improbable that these figures may be trusted so far as they indicate that there has been a decline in the death rate of each race during the last ten years, that the decline among the negroes has been less rapid than that among the whites, and that the death rate of the negroes at the present time is about, but not quite, twice that of the white race." Census Bulletin 8, Negroes in the United States, p. 66a.

But as the death rate of the Negroes in 1890 was reckoned on a return of population almost certainly considerably too low, that rate was itself too high; the proper correction would probably bring the rate in 1890 even below that of 1900.

  [39] "The number of negro, Indian, and Mongolian children under 5 years of age to each 1,000 women 15 to 44 years of age was 759 in 1880 and 585 in 1900, showing a decrease of 174 [23 per cent.!] in twenty years. The number in 1880 was 173 greater, and in 1900, 77 greater than the corresponding number for the whites." Census Bulletin 8, Negroes in the United States, p. 14a.

  [40] Here is the penitentiary record for 1900:

    Whites. Negroes.
  Convicts 253 2,147
For Homicide 59 366
" Rape 3 41
" Arson 3 38
" Forgery 7 42
" Burglary   34 432
" Major offences    106 919
  Population per felon 3,270 317