56. Massachusetts Gazette, 20 November 1787


(No. VI.)

The happy Effects of uniting Industry and Economy.

In a pleasant village, bordering upon the sea, was born Amintor.—He was tall and comely, of a lively imagination and a generous disposition. His father was in possession of a considerable fortune, but daily squandered it away in extravagance. In consequence of which, he was kept in a kind of subjection and a state of servitude to his father, to enable him the better to discharge his debts, and to continue his manner of life. But this illy suiting the gay disposition and independent spirit of Amintor, he resolved to quit this confined situation, and enter upon some course of life in which he could act independently. Agreeably to his proposal he embarked for the seas: but being unacquainted with that kind of employment, he found it very fatiguing and discouraging. He was once shipwrecked among rocks and quicksands, and after suffering much from hunger, cold and fatigue, almost despairing of assistance, he was taken up by a vessel from the W. I. bound to B——n. But a war breaking out, he was taken by the enemy, confined in a doleful prison, and treated with great cruelty and barbarity. Being at length set at liberty by an exchange of prisoners, he resolved to retaliate upon his enemies. He therefore embarked on board a privateer, and soon had the satisfaction of committing to prison the authors of his late suffering. He likewise in a little time acquired an affluent fortune. At the conclusion of the war, he sat down to enjoy his acquired riches, and, as is common to persons of his disposition, his fortune began to be reduced in a rapidity proportionable to its acquisition. He plunged into every kind of debauchery, and adopted every mode of extravagance. His father strongly dissuaded him from his erroneous conduct, but acting diametrically opposite to his precepts himself, they had little effect upon Amintor. As he was one day riding into the country, he was struck with the agreeable appearance of a young lady whom he passed on the road. This was no other than the charming Amelia. She was dressed in a mean habit, but remarkably neat. She was tall, slender and graceful; of a lovely and delicate countenance, strongly expressive of the beauties of her mind. She happened to be going to visit a friend, who lived opposite an inn where Amintor had stopped to regale himself. On seeing her again, he inquired into her circumstances and situation. He found that she was the daughter of reputable parents, who, by undue misfortunes, were reduced from high life to indigent circumstances. The charms of Amelia had already awakened him to love, and her humble situation excited his generosity. He resolved, if possible, to raise her to her former splendid situation. He accordingly solicited her hand and heart, and in a short time his wishes were completed by her acquiescence to join in HYMEN’s rosy bands. But by inattention to his affairs, and by his gay career of life, his fortune was now very much reduced. By the persuasions of the charming Amelia, he immediately applied to business; by the unremitted industry of Amintor, the strict attention and economy of Amelia, they soon acquired an ample fortune. Amintor had been industrious, but, previous to his connection with Amelia, he became gay, profuse and extravagant. By her influence, he threw off his extravagance and became economical. By their joint exertions and good conduct they arose to the highest rank among their acquaintance; they were respected, esteemed and beloved. They are now in possession of farms, stores, still houses, and every thing which can render life agreeable. Thus we see the happy effects of uniting industry and economy. There seems to be something in this story strikingly analog[o]us to America. At the conclusion of the late war, after having struggled through almost insuperable difficulties, the sons of America sat down, lulled in the lap of ease and unconcernment. Almost every species of luxury was introduced. Bankruptcies, rebellions, loss of publick faith and national honour have been the consequences. And when an Amelia shall appear, and reform the manners of Columbia’s sons, then, and not till then, will she take the rank to which she is capable of rising among the nations of the world. No country on the globe is better calculated to arrive to a state of splendour and power than America. We have a large and extensive continent, furnished with numerous harbours, as commodious as any in the world. We have internal resources, which if properly attended to, would soon place us beyond the reach of our enemies. It is indeed surprising, that, among such a vast number of professed patriots, no real ones are yet found. Some time last winter, industry and economy were strongly recommended to the people by gentlemen who held the first offices in the state. The bosoms of many individuals palpitated with joy, to see so noble a plan proposed by men whose genius and learning do honour to AMERICA and the whole human species. With longing expectation did they wait to see the proposed plan adopted by those respectable gentlemen. But alas! they could not yet relinquish their DEAR LUXURIES. Let the legislature impose such duties as shall effectually exclude every article, which can be manufactured in America. Let the legislature, and every gentleman of distinction, encourage our manufactories by their personal practice. Then will the flame catch and pass, like the electrical fluid, through all ranks and orders. Then will the American eagle extend to the remotest corners of the world, and the whole earth resound with COLUMBIA’s fame.