This collection consists of six bound sections of a partial manuscript written during a voyage from Brazil to New York City aboard the
S. S. Emily B. Souder in 1863 and 1865 by an unknown author. The work explains the author's views on the American Civil War, self-governance, and slavery. The author describes himself as a "true democrat" and optimist who maintains faith in Americans' ability to govern themselves. He is a supporter of the federal government, and mourns the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. He is, however, critical of abolitionists and their conviction "that they are specially appointed by Heaven to bring about freedom of the Southern slaves regardless of all considerations whatever; and that the constitution, peace, good order, paternal love and the general happiness of whites and blacks, should all be sacrificed upon the alter of compulsory abolitionism."
The manuscript is written in ink by the same hand and includes editorial notations in pencil. Only pages 185-212, 249-296, 347-378 and 427-610 are present; pages 185 to 230 are affixed to one another and torn.