The Slavery of Wages

March 26, 1847

From Thomas Ingersoll, Westfield, Chaut. Co. N .Y.   “I have seen the slavery of the South, and the slavery of the North; and, sir, I find little to choose between the slavery of wages and that of no wages; though the slavery of wages supposes, and indeed is proof, of the mental advance of this order of slaves, over him who is yet but a chattel. Yet, sir, the system of wages, as now established, is a biting, galling enslavement. No man, by the mere wages he receives, can ever rise above a menial.  I speak of the common laborer.  The laborer does not any where enjoy the full fruits of his labor. He is under the necessity of sharing with another, who does not labor.  By what order of morals is the product of labor thus divided?  Must it be said, that capital must draw its share?  But why shall capital draw the lion’s share?….”