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COOPER, James Fenimore (1789-1851). Autograph letter signed ("J. Fenimore Cooper") to Henry Ware III (possibly the clergyman and writer), Otsego Hall, Coopers Town [New York], 14 February 1842. 1 full page, 4to, integral address leaf in Cooper's hand, postmarked, partly in French. Fine condition.

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COOPER, James Fenimore (1789-1851). Autograph letter signed ("J. Fenimore Cooper") to Henry Ware III (possibly the clergyman and writer), Otsego Hall, Coopers Town [New York], 14 February 1842. 1 full page, 4to, integral address leaf in Cooper's hand, postmarked, partly in French. Fine condition.

COOPER RETELLS A STORY OF AN LOUISANA SLAVE-OWNER. Cooper rails about the theft of a letter and avows his confidence in the American judicial system. He ends by recounting an anecdote, in French. He writes: "The fellow who stole the letter may reach his doom in the act. He could only have offended from an inherent love of stealing; and sooner or later, such a propensity will be certain to bring its own punishment.... The rogues get to be so far in the ascendant among us, that the honest alone meet with imprisonment and death...We live, my young friend, in the golden age of an exceedingly civilized country. Among other blessings we enjoy, is that of a pure and uncontaminated justice. Public sentiment which never errs in anything, is particularly alive to rewards and punishments, as is exemplified in the following story: a lady of Louisiana was discussing the merits of different modes of governing negros, with some friends, while walking among her blacks, when the voice of wisdom issued from her mouth...: "[in French] In order to govern negros, you only need one system. I have a system. My own system, which is one of rewards and punishments. However, I am going to address my slaves, and you will witness the result. My friends (turning to the negroes), tomorrow the canes will be [indecipherable], and you must work hard. You are aware of my system, the system of punishments and rewards. If you do not work, you will be whipped - but if you work very, very hard, you will not be whipped - voila." Not in Letters, ed. J.F.Beard and presumably unpublished.
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