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quality of the commodity rather more minutely than he does at present. Such Appendix. examination is, indeed, now, in a great measure, out of the question; as the buyer, like a creditor, depends on the artificial laws enacted to relieve and protect him, in all cases *.
742. But on the natural system of weight and standard, every able, and of course, accredited assayer would become a natural banker; or the banker, from an ignorant money-holder, would be obliged to become a scientific assayer of gold and silver; and his note would be taken in payment, within the circle of his connections, as money, and it's validity or estimation would be proportioned to the natural credit such an aflayer had obtained. (3.) If there were no speculation commerce, how would focieties be provided with
necesaries? (See $ 114.)
743. I answer, that all speculation, in articles of the first necessity, ought, in a well regulated community, to make a part of the duty of the government: or, if that should be found difficult or impracticable, a commission-commerce might easi. ly be organized so universally, that, from the most distânt individuals, orders might be conveyed from one commission tradesman to another, even to the last commission merchant. All these might in such case obtain a decent and secure living, proportioned to their different degrees of trouble and risk. This commercial system, indeed, might easily be introduced even into our present societies; since all kinds of property may be effectually secured by the established modes of insur
744. A representation of the silver and copper coin, introduced into the colony weight and
denominations of S. Leona, is inserted in the large Map.
of S. Leona Fig. 1, represents the Dollar, which is called a Cent piece.
silver. 100 coined copper Cent pieces weigh 3lb.
This would certainly be a very great, and, I should think, a very proper check on speculation commerce, which at present lurries on business with the tumultuous celerity of a hunting match. One man pushes another, he a third and so on, whether they can bear pushing or not, with such dirorderly eagerness that many tumble and trip up others, while the least deserving often fare the greatest prizes in this mercantile (cramble. In the mean time, intellectual improvement, and every other kind of improvement, personal, domestic or social, is entirely neglected: for when a man’s whole time and attention are engrolied by one low sordid pursuit, every nobler purpose of his being must be overlooked- See also that excellent work, Walker's Geography; Second Edition, 1795, $150.
similar to the
NOTE X. 1. See ý 425 et seq. 742. If the reader has given that attention, which the subject fo well deserves, to what is said on cultivation (from ) 131 to 140 inclusive) he will not suppose me a very warm admirer of the system adopted; or rather, I would fain hope, only under
trial, at S. Leona. The part of my book just quoted, which touches on cultiCultivation at vation, was printed several weeks before I had an opportunity of perusing the arti. S. Leoni,
cle on the same subject, in the second report of the Directors (see Ø 425 et jeq.) and W. Indian. at which, I confess, I was both grieved and surprized. I was grieved at observing
so much similarity between the system of cultivation adopted, or tried, at S. Leona and that practised in the Sugar Islands : and I was surprised that any thing like an ini. tation of that mercantile system of cultivation should be tolerated at S. Leona, after it's oppressive consequences to the unhappy flaves on sugar estates, in the W. Indies, had so clearly appeared in evidence, before the British Privy Council and House of Commons *. The similarity which I lament, appears in the following particulars:
(1.) As on West Indian sugar estates, the grumettas, on the Company's plantation, have a stated, though certainly a more liberal, allowance of provisions; and their dinner is drelled for them in the manager's house, as for weakly negroes, and for children on most plantations in the sugar islands. This mode will save time; but I much .doubt if it will tend to improve the natives in the arts of household ceconomy.
• That oppression is inseparable from the present mode of cultivating the sugar cane in the W. Indies, appears by inference from Long's Hist. of Jamaica, and explicitly in Dickson's Letters on Slavery. This last writer (p. 23) particularly describes the manner in which the cane- holes are dug and the dung distributed. “ I have seen,” says he, “ land lined off into square spaces 4 feet each way, which I believe, is the general rule in Barbadoes. The cane-holes, therefore, may be about 3 feet square, and 7 or 8 inches deep, with a space or " distance" between each, and another space or “ bank" at right angles to the distance, to receive the mould. The holes are dug, with hoes, by the slaves, in a row, with the driver at one end, to preserve the line. They begin and finish a row of these holes as nearly at the same instants as possible ; so that this equal talk must be performed in the same time, by a number of people who it is next to imposible, thould be all equally Atrong and dexterous."-" The weak, therefore, froin the very nature of this mode of turning up the soil, muft necesarily be oppressed. The driver is often obliged to set such negroes as cannot keep up with the rest, to work, in a separate corner by themselves ; but I am sorry to say he too often first tries the effect of Alogging."-" In dif. tributing dung, each negro carries on his (or her) head a basket full of it, the driver with his whip bringing up the rear of the gang. Here then, is another equal talk, to be performed in an equal time, by people of unequal strength. In distributing dung, therefore, as well as in holing, the weak are unavoidably oppressed."-" In this work, the negroes have no help at all from cattle or implements of husbandry, the hoe and the basket only excepted." &c.The baskets are all of the same size ; insomuch that a dung-basket has become a kind of measure for potatoes, &c. as a trash-basket, which is much larger, is for other things.
746. (2.) They are called to work in the morning by the blowing of a horn.-On Appendix. fome W. Indian plantations a shell is used for this purpose, and on others a bell. “Shell-blow," as the Naves call it, rouses them about 4 o'clock. In half an hour Labourers on after, more or less, the driver fallies forth bawling “ Turn out! Turn out!" at the the Co's plansame time loudly smacking his cowskin, which he smartly applies to the naked bodies out with a of those who come too late into the field.-May no W. Indian overseer or negro.
horn, driver*, ever find means to substitute a flogging for the dram, now given at S. Leona!! 747.(3.) They work under the immediate eye of one of the better fort of natives, while and work un
der a planter's the planter directs their general operations, sees them often from his window and walks occafonally among them."-If, for “ one of the better sort of natives,” an overseer, or driver, with his whip, should ever steal into the fields of S. Leona, and whether or not such an event is to be dreaded we shall presently see, then this passage might be indifferently applied to that colony or to the W. Indies. But, in the Southern ftates of America, the negroes have certain tasks assigned them, which when they have finished, they are at liberty to fish, hunt, work in their own grounds, or amuse themselves for the rest of the day. In this way, they do more work and per, form it sooner, better and more chearfully, without the superintendance of a driver than the negroes in the W. Indies who drudge all day long, not only under the eye, but literally under the whip, of the driver. A Mr. Douglas, some few years ago, carried 60 negroes from Carolina to Jamaica, where he continued his talk work, with the same success as in America; but as things now stand in the W. Indies, improvements cannot be introduced without much difficulty. (See Min. Evid. 1790 p. 183, and 1791 p. 218, 250.) I am, therefore, clearly of opinion, that task work, or rather piece-work, would tend, much more than day-labour, to call forth the activity of the native Africans, and consequently to promote their improvement: and I would fain hope that as soon as the grumettas on the Company's plantation become tolerably expert, that piece-work will be assigned them, instead of drowsy, lifeless day-labour.
748. (4.) The company's labourers appear to be employed from sun rise to sun set, from fun-rise except about 2 hours for dinner, and, as I am told, a short space for prayers, which to fun-fet, ex.
cept about 24 may be about equal to the breakfast-time allowed to the slaves in the W. Indies. hours. Thus the former seem to be employed nearly as many hours as the latter are, out of crop. I say nearly; for the latter are generally obliged to “pick" a bundle of grass, and to carry it to the cattle on the penns, and thus are deprived of a great part of their dinner-time; and at night they have to serve the cattle with a second bundle of grass, which they can seldom do till a considerable time after sun-set. This is out of crop; but in crop-time, which lasts 4 or
* These words are very often used fynonymously in Barbadoes and the other windward Islands, where the chief of an estate is generally called the Manager. But in Jamaica commonly called the Overseer.
Appendix. 5 months in the year, the W. Indian slaves are obliged, after their hard work
in the day, to continue their labours in the mill and boiling-house, every second or third night, according to the strength of the gang. Thus I would by no means infinuate that the negroes on the Company's plantation are yet wrought so hard, or for so many hours, as those on W. Indian sugar estates. But it is to be remembered that in the W. Indies, no other improvement than that of the master's property is so much as pretended to; whereas at S. Leona, the focial and intelle&ual improve.
ment of the natives is the declared end and aim of the whole 'establishment. 10 hours daily 749. Now I think it may fairly be questioned, whether the io hours daily, labour, too
though moderáte, labour, performed by the Company's negroes, under a tropical much in a tropical climate. fun, be compatible with any considerable improvement, either by instruction or stu.
dy, or by what, in one view, is equally improving, I mean, attention to their own
collect that this labour is dull, mechanical day-labour, in the success of which the
750.(5.) “Their number and regularity have scarcely varied for above a year, except
I Mould certainly, in so far, prefer their system to that of S. Leona. But encour: APPENDIX. age, or rather force them, to this work, the W. Indians certainly do; and I never heard that they reckoned it an interruption to the plantation work. The truth is, that this passage, combined with the rest of $426, strongly excites my jealousy for Africa, and raises in my mind very unpleasant sensations; for I cannot but think that Civilization it betrays a greater regard to the Company's planting concerns, than to the civiliza- cannot ad
vance where tion of the natives. I allow that the absence of the native labourers from the Compa- labourers are ny's plantations at the approach of the rains, or the planting season, may be incon- not interefted
in produce, yenient to the Company. But is the absence of the native labourers, from their own little plantations, at the same period, no inconvenience to them? In countries where rents are paid by personal service, the absence of the vafsals, in seed time and harvest, is doubtless inconvenient to the landlord. But the inconvenience felt by the poor vassal, when he loses his seed-time, or when his little crop rots upon the ground, while with a heavy heart, he is performing his landlord's work, the haughty landlord little regards *.. Now it is impossible that civilization can prosper where personal service, or any other system, that tends to lessen the labourer's interest in the produce of his own toil, generally prevails. This is evident from the rude State of those countries where such systems are still adhered to t. And, without sus. pe&ting that any system obstructive of civilization is designedly meant to be intro. duced into S. Leona, I will venture to say, that, while the native labourers are con, fined so closely to day-labour, as to prevent them entirely from tilling portions of land for their own immediate advantage, their civilization will advance but slowly. For wherein does civilization (exclusive, I mean, of higher considerations) consist, but in such an improvement of the intellect, as enables a man to conduct his own affairs to the best advantage, and to interchange good offices with his neighbours. But how can a man learn to conduct his own affairs who has, properly speaking, no affairs of his own to conduct; who is roused from his morning flumbers, by an overfeer's horn; who labour's almost all day under his eye, and is fed with food ready dressed from his kitchen; who has little time to look after his family, and still less to • spend in neighbourly intercourse $? In short, how can any set of beings be expect.
* I mention personal service merely for illustration, without intending any invidious reference to S. Leona; particularly as I am sorry to say that such service is very frequently abused in my own native country Sweden.--I had always supposed that this kind of personal service had been long annihilated in one European kingdom at leaft. But I was mistaken;, for I have been credibly informed that, whatever the law may be, the pra&tice still exists in two counties in the North of Scotland not to mention the wretched degradation of the poor Scalags in the Hebrides.-See a very well written paper in a periodical work entitled the Bee, published at Edinburgh, by the able, intelligent and patriotic Dr. James Anderson-also the Rev. Mr. Buchannan's account of the Hebrides, lately published.
+ Even the Empress of Russia, despot as the is, sanctioned, and perhaps dictated, this noble sentence L'agriculture ne pourrajamais prosperer là où l'agriculteur ne poffede rien en propre." Agriculture can never flourish in a country where the husbandman has no property--Cath. II. Imp. de Ruff. Inft. p. 83.
| The time, says a great philosopher, which a country mechanic fpends in going from one job to another, is what prevents him from degenerating into a brute. ($122.) Kk 2