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ON

COLONIZATION, &c.

CH A P.

XI.

COLONIES ATTEMPTED, OR NOW FORMING, IN AFRICA, ON THE

PRINCIPLES OF HUMANITY,
By the British, the Danes, and the Swedes.

MARKS

328. HAVING, in the first part, given brief descrip. INTRODUCE

tions of the colonies formed, or attempted by the Europeans in Africa, and it's islands, on the principles of commerce, I now proceed to offer some account of those which the British, the Danes and the Swedes have attempted, or are now endeavouring to establish, in that part of the world, on the principles of humanity, for the noble purpose of civilizing the natives. This, I acknowledge, would be to me a pleasant task, if I were provided with all the proper materials, and could promise to describe the rise, progress and present state of those undertakings, with an exactness corresponding to their importance. But, unfortunately, neither my materials, nor abili. ties,

are equal to my inclination, to do justice to a subject, which has long been dear to my heart. Respecting the Danish colony, my information, though it has both novelty and authenticity to recommend it, is by no means so full as I could wish; and of the internal history В

of

XI.

TOR Y RE.

MARK.

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CH A P. of the British colony at Sierra Leona, and the late attempt

at Bulama, I have not been able, with all my assiduity, to INTRODUC- collect so many authentic particulars as I expected, which

have not already been inserted or touched on in the reports
of the gentlemen, who respectively preside over those un-
dertakings. But, of the Swedish attempt, or rather design,
I can give a more satisfactory statement.—The reports of
the Directors of the Sierra Leona Company, and those of the
Trustees of the Bulama Association, are really instructive and
interesting, as far as they go: but, having been chiefly intend-
ed to inform the proprietors of the state of their affairs, and
of the proceedings of the Directors and the Trustees, we can-
not reasonably expect them to contain more of the internal
history of those colonies, (my chief defideratum) than was con-
fistent with the principal design. The truth is, that, consider-
ing the various calamities which befel those infant establish-
ments, and which rendered the keeping of regular journals
extremely difficult, I am more surprized at the fulness than
the brevity of the hisorical parts of those reports: and their
defects cannot I think be fairly attributed to any other
causes than those just mentioned. In short, it is but too
well known, that early misfortunes checked the colony at
Sierra Leona, and overwhelmed, but it is hoped not irre-
trievably, that of Bulama. The fame unhappy events

could not fail to obscure the history of both.
The author o 329. The reports, I am obliged to compress into a compass
bridge his ma- suitable to my limits. But I mean to retain all the essential

circumstances; and to insert in the appendix, the additional
ones which I have been able to ascertain, and such remarks
as the subje&ts will fairly bear. Thus, a circumstantial and
faithful abridgment of the reports will form the basis of
what I have to deliver respecting Sierra Leona and Bulama;

bliged to a

terials.

XI.

INTRODUC

and the additions will most probably, after all, more than C HA P. occupy the space gained by abbreviation. By way of apology to the gentlemen concerned, I can only express my TORÝ° Rehope that, in consideration of the intention, they will excuse manas. the liberty I have been obliged to take in abridging their reports, as well as in differing with them in some of their opinions. Subjects in their nature controvertible, necessarily suppose and admit diversity of sentiments. But surely men may entertain different opinions of particulars, whose great, primary motive to action is the same. The more I consider the subject, the more I am convinced that the motive of the gentlemen alluded to, is a conscientious anxiety to promote the civilization of Africa, and I am willing to interpret all their opinions and actions, by the same rule of candour and charity, which I wish to be applied to my own.

330. Before I proceed to abridge the reports, it seems Dr. Smeath. proper to observe, that, as far as I have been able to learn, colonizing s. the late Dr. Henry Smeathman was the person who first proposed a specific plan for colonizing Africa, with a view to civilization * From his letter to Dr. Knowles, dated

July

Leonan

* I say, a specific plan; for that great ornament of society and friend of mankind, the late learned Dr. Fothergill, had before " suggested the cultivation of the fugar-cane upon the continent of Africa, where it seems to have been indigenous, and thriyes luxuriantly (See § 63;) and that the natives should be employed as servants for hire, and not as slaves, compelled to labour, by the dread of torture.” See “ Some Account of the late John Fothergill, M. D. F. R. S. &c. read before the Medical Society of London, in 1782, by John Coakley Lettsom.” Fothergill's Works, Vol. III.

I cannot omit that Dr. J. C. Lettsom, who was born to an inheritance of flaves, after having trained them, by a long course of kind and beneficent offices, to a due regard for social and religious obligations, generously declared them free. As far as I have been informed, the Doctor is the only West Indian who has emancipated any considerable number of flaves; but, in North America, such instances have been nu.

merous,

B 2

XI.

TORY RE. 14 ARKS.

CHA P. July the 21st, 1783, (see § 621, et seq.) it appears, that he

conceived this noble design, in Africa itself, where he reINTRODUC- fided four

sided four years. In 1785, he published his “ Plan of a settlement, to be made near Sierra Leona, &c. intended more particularly for the service and happy establishment of blacks and people of colour, to be shipped as freemen, under the direction of the Committee for relieving the black poor, and under the protection of the British Government." ( $ 648, et seq.) The principle and object of this plan were so congenial with the benevolent views of Granville Sharp, Esq. that it could not but meet with his general approbation. Mr. Sharp had for many years, with great labour and expense, maintained the claims and rights of the enslaved Africans. His exertions in the famous cause of the negro Somerset, are alone sufficient to immortalize him. After a long litigation, Lord Mansfield, in June 1772, delivered the judgment of the Court of King's Bench, the effect of which is, that the instant a save lands on the British shore, he becomes, IPSO FACTO, free: and the judgment itself was a noble effect of the British Constitution, which, says another learned judge, - abhors and will not endure the existence of slavery, within this kingdom *,” Mr.

Mr. Gran ville Sharp's exertions.

Sharp

merous. Indeed the whole society of QUAKERS, in that country, have, in consistency with their principles, “ let the oppressed go free.” But, so well had they been prepared for the change, by the care and humanity of their praiseworthy maIters, that they still, in general, serve them, and so faithfully, that, even in a pecu. niary view, they have no reason to repent of their liberality.

For a very extraordinary proposal, for civilizing Africa, see in the Appendix, Notes, &c. respecting S. Leona and Bulama, Note A.

* Blackstone's Comm. If it be asked why slavery is endured within the British colonies? the true answer seems to be, that, like some other abuses and usurpations, it stole into those distant dependencies, in unsettled times, when the communi

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