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Appendix. ed to improve, if they have little or no scope for the exercise of their faculties, and
if every avenue, which dire&tly leads to social or intellectual improvement, be, in a
great measure, shut against them? exemplified in 751. Lord Kaimes somewhere observes, that on public roads being carried the cotton manufacture,
through some of the less improved parts of Scotland, the neighbouring cottagers were seen gradually to transfer the regularity, neatness and patient labour with which they saw the work conducted, successively into their gardens and little spots of land, their cottages, their furniture, and their apparel; insomuch that at last the improvement reached their very minds. But, I apprehend, this falutary progression could not have taken place, if those cottagers had had no property of their own except money, no. gardens, or spots of land, nor any time to cultivate them. Had his Lordship, however, lived but a few years longer, he would have had the mortification of seeing this last case, and it's consequences, verified in some parts of his native land. He would have seen multitudes of males and females, promiscuously crowded into certain modern manufactories; cloathed indeed in cottons, instead of their homegrown and home-spun linens and woollens; drinking tea instead of butter-milk, and whisky instead of water or small-beer; eating, perhaps, wheaten bread instead of oaten bread and potatoes; and, above all, the very children earning so much money, as to render them completely independent of their parents, and consequently not very well prepared for social restraints. But I fear he would have looked in vain, for the wonted bloom of health or blush of innocence on their faces, or for that sobriety, intelligence and decency, which distinguished the conversation and behaviour of their immediate progenitors. His Lordship would have found, however, that they confume and fabricate a great many exciseable commodities; that their labour, though destructive of their health and morals, causes a great circulation of money; and that thus, in a financial and commercial view, they fulfil what some politicians seem to
consider as the great ends of their creation*. and in that of - 752. Now every sugar plantation, in the W. Indies, is no other than a great majugar,
nufactory, in which 2 or 300 people are collected, and avowedly considered and treated as mere passive implements of labour, that have no interest whatever in the produce; and this is one cause of the ignorance, vice and disorder which prevail in the W. Indies. In this respect, therefore, the similarity of the Company's plantation at S. Leona, to a W. Indian one, is likely, if continued, to lead to very bad consequences. But I would fain hope, that when the culture of sugar comes to be
* The evils here hinted at, are perhaps not fo explicitly stated, in the statistical account of Scotland, as could be wished. But their introduction is well remembered, and much lamented by many worthy and truly patriotic persons in that country. -In Manchtster, the evils alluded to are of longer standing, and more inveterate. To enumerate instances would be endless; but I fall mention one, which fell within my own notice. I knew a workmen there, who, when trade was brisk, earned his guinea a day by cutting fustians. He regularly worked 4 days in the week, and, accompanied by his wife, spent the rest of his time, and all his money in the neighbouring public house,
bourers at S. Leona.
seriously pursued at S. Leona, some such plan as the annexed one described, by Mr. Appendix. Botham, which interests the labourers in the produce, and does not collect and keep together such numbers of them, will be finally adopted by the Company.
753. (6.) In the W. Indies, there is an incessant conflict between the managers and Differences the slaves, the former being interested in getting as much labour done, and the latter
nager and law in doing as little, as possible. At S. Leona too, it appears that" little differences may have occasionally arisen between the manager and the native labourers.”—Far be it from me, to insinuate there is any present danger of such differences, being settled in the forcible W. Indian mode. I have too good an opinion of the present governor and council, especially of him who conducts the plantation, to harbour such a thought. Still I cannot dissemble the fact, that some gentlemen at S. Leona, have for years, been accustomed to see the mode alluded to practised in the W. Indies; and we all know the lasting force of education and habit, as well as the general frail. ty of human nature, when urged by strong temptation *.
754. (7.) I come now to what I think by far the Atrongest obje&tion to the present Extreme dan. mode of cultivation at S. Leona, namely, the handle that it may one day afford to de. Indian fyltem figning men, for the introduction of West Indian abuses.-In truth, the S. Leona being complanalready so nearly resembles the W. Indian, that if any future governor and council pleated there. could find means to withdraw the pittance of wages from the labourers, and to flip the whip into the hand of the overseer, the two systems would not only be similar, but actually the same. And indeed there are too many reasons to fear, that the W. Indian system may, at some future, convenient time, be really compleated in that ill-fated colony. A strong tendency to abuse, has ever invariably prevailed in provinces distant, as S. Leona is, from the seat of supreme Government, a truth exemplified in all the British sugar colonies; in one instance fo recently as 12 or 13 years ago, when a governor, in open defiance of all law, wrested a considerable sum of money from a certain ancient and respectable W. Indian colony, consisting of 18 or 20,000 white people,
* The accounts I have uniformly heard of Mr. W. are highly favourable to that gentleman's general character, particularly for humanity. It is not denied, that a considerable number of men, who well deserve the same character, preside over W. Indian plantations. But I own it somewhat surprised me, to find the Directors expressing disappointment in the character of the lower overseers, ($449.) whose general depravity has been so often mentioned as one cause of the sufferings of the poor Naves. Without shocking the reader with their numerous babarities, stated in evidence, I Mall refer him, for their general character, to Beckford’s Hift. of Jamaica, printed in 1788, but which I have not now at hand. Mr. Long, however, tells us, that “ many of them are the very dregs of the three kingdoms ; " that “ they have commonly inore vices, and much fewer good qualities, than the Naves over whom they are set in authority;” in particular, that “ they exhibit detettable pictures of drunkenness," for which reason he adviles their “ rum to be served out to them ready mixed with water." Hift. of Jamaica, Vol. II. p. 289, 409, 471.
APPENDIX. many of them men of property, education, and knowledge of the world*. The arts
by which W. Indian attornies or agents, and managers or overseers, defraud and ruin absentee planters, are too numerous and intricate to be here particularly explained, if not too well known to need explanation t. Now if these things can, and very often do happen, to the property of individuals, whose all is at stake, what security can there be, that similar arts shall not be employed in defrauding a joint stock company, where the share of each partner, is too small to intereft him much in it's success? Or, which is more to the purpose, what security can the unrepresented colonists have, against the completion of the W. Indian plan, already begun at Sierra Leona ? Indeed, when I consider the various causes which may call the present Directors from their benevolent labours; that they may be succeeded by men less attentive or less disinterested; that future Subscribers may become more indifferent than the present, to the grand objects of the institution, and less inquisitive as to it's management; that the affairs of the Company will naturally become more and more complex, and that the accounts sent home may be designedly perplexed (one of the W. Indian arts,) that the governor and council may find it to be their interest to
* It is however but justice to the memory of the then Ministry to say, that this governor was recalled, with evident marks of disapprobation, not to say disgrace.
+ « If we judge from experience, and the common conduct of Managers, in the absence of the Proprietors, an estate yields not half as much when the owner is absent, as when he is living on the Spot.” Answer to the 53d qu. of the British Privy Council, by Governor Orde of Dominica. See also the Ans. of Lieut. Governor Matthew of Grenada to the same query, with many similar passages in that valuable body of information, and in Mio. Evid. before the House of Comìnons.--Mr. Long very explicitly describes one grand cause of these enormous defalcations. It is well knownl," says he, “ that a great many eftates of different absentees, and lying in distant parts of the island, are often given up to the charge of one agent only, who cannot possibly reside at thein all, or visit them very frequently. Matters are then left to the discretion of overseers, whose chief aim it is, to raise to themselves a character as able planters, by increasing the produce of the respective estates ;” (on which produce a law of the island ordains, that their patrons, the attornies or agents, shall be paid a commission of 6 per cent.) “ This is too frequently attempted, by forcing the negroes to labour beyond their abilities. Of course they drop off, and if not recruited incessantly, the gentleman fteals away, like a rat from a barn in flames, and carries the credit of great plantership and vast crops in in his hand, co obtain advanced wages from some new employer,” (very often an attorney) “ in another district of the island. The absentees are too often deceived, who measure the condition of their properties by the large remittances sent home for one or two years, without adverting to the heavy losses sustained in the production of them; and they find too late their incomes suddenly abridged, and the linews of their estates wasted far below their expectation." Hift. of Jamaica, Vol. II. P. 406.
" While by imprudent exertions, there may be a visible increase of crop, perhaps to 4 or £500 annual value, there is, at the same time an annual decrease of working negroes, to more than double that value.” Anf. by a Planter of 3068 acres in Barbadoes, in fupp. to the Privy Council's Report, p. 32
force, instead of paying, the labourers; that not so much as a private letter can be Appendix. sent to England without their knowledge; and that the colonists, being without representation, will be without remedy*_ I say, when I consider all these circumItances, not as an airy train of pollibilities, but as events which seldom fail to happen in similar cases, I cannot help expressing my fears, that, at some future period, the labourers may come to be paid their wages, with whips and chains, and thus the finishing stroke be given to the W. Indian system at S. Leona.
755. I have no fault to find with any of the articles planted, except the sugar-cane, Deplorable efthe cultivation of which is unquestionably too laborious for any new colony ; efpe- fects of forc, cially for a new colony, intended to civilize a rude people, whom the fight of such tivation. exertion as is necessary on a sugar plantation, would be apt to disgust with regular labour. Indeed, the cultivation of sugar engrosses so much attention and labour, that I am clear, it should never be attempted, on any system, till a colony abound with people, and cattle, and food for both. (See $727 n.) The premature introduction of that plant into the British colonies, especially into the Ceded Ilands, about 30 years ago, destroyed such multitudes of flaves and cattle, in Dominica particularly, that it has been clearly proved, no capital was ever, upon the whole, so disadvantageously employed, as that vested by the British in W. Indian estatest. In thort, in no age or country, was ever avarice more compleatly disappointed, or humanity more shockingly outraged, than in the flattering but ill-judged introduction of the sugar cane into all or most of the British W. Indian Ilands, especially the Ceded Islands. It has indeed been a root of bitterness to those colonies; and it's premature and forced cultivation has, within our own memory, swept masters and Naves, the oppressors and the oppressed, into one common grave. · It was difficult for me to fuppose, that the Directors were uninformed of thefe deplorable facts, or would suffer themselves to be misled by the alluring estimates which the W. Indians so well know how to fabricate, when they wish to dispose advantageously of a losing property. My astonishment therefore was great, when I was ferioufly assured, that a compleat apparatus for making sugar, had been sent to S. Leona, by one of the first ships.
I hope what I have said respecting representation, may not be misunderstood. I only mean, that colonists, who are sufficiently enlightened to form a proper judgement of their own social interests, fculd chuse representatives. (See § 161, II. 699.) :
+ This has been irrefragably demonstrated, from the data of the present planters, and of their predeceffors, in Mr. Ramsay's Answers to Objections against the Abolition of the Slave-trade, and in a series of efsays figned Terentius, published in Woolfall's Diary, in May, 1789.
1 In such estimates, the apparent profits of large crops are explicitly stated; but the loffes, if mentioned at all, are too often couched in general terms, from which persons inexperienced in W. Indian affairs, can draw no just conclufion. Yet the losses are at least as capable of explicit statement as the profits. Thus fome estates require 6 new negroes, others 8, and othere even 10 or more, to keep up the
APPENDIX. 756. If this last measure was dictated, as I am persuaded it was, by a wish to supply
the humane demand for sugar raised by freemen, the motivewas laudable and excellent, but the attempt was neverthelels premature; and so, I will venture to say, it was considered, by a few of the Directors, who, though quite unconnected with the W. Indies, are known to be particularly well informed respecting the laborious culture and manufacture of sugar, but who, I presume, were in the minority when
this resolution was taken. The author 757. Having thus taken the liberty lo state my chief objections to the plan of cul. recommends another plan.
tivation introduced, or under trial, at S. Leona, it may be expected that I should offer my sentiments respecting the plan which ought to be adopted. This I shall do, with all the deference justly due to gentlemen of whose good intentions I am so fully convinced, (see 9329, 593, 594.) I shall do this the more readily too, as I believe the plan of cultivation is not so far advanced, or so unalterably fixed, as not to admit of any change or modification which the Directors may deem expedient. Or, if my hints, which (exclusive of the Batavian plan of cultivating sugar, inserted below,) are few and simple, should not have the good fortune to be attended to by the Directors, they may perhaps be useful to others who may hereafter attempt
cultivation in Africa. Desires of a 758. It appears to me then, that all human exertions are excited by human defires, rude people to be excited,
or wants, natural or artificial, and consequentlythat real civilization is best promoted by and gratified raising and properly directing, the desires or wants of a rude people. (See $33,708.) with innocent luxuries. When every individual of a community can, independently of others, exchange his la
bour for the articles he wants, he is then happy and free. In other words, the happiness and liberty of the individual depend on the opportunities he has of using his own personal resources, to procure necessaries or luxuries. (See $ 734 n.) Hence, I think, it follows, that, if we intend to make a rude people happy, by training them to the innocent habits of civilized life, we should first enquire, whether they desire, or feel the want of those articles, which in the civilized world, are thought absolutely necessary to comfortable subsistence. If theydo not, those desires should, in the first place, be excited; and this being done, some innocent luxuries should be exhibited to their view, for obtaining which they have no other means than their labour. (See $ 36,
gang, and a proportionable number of cattle. I am happy, however, to add, that a considerable number of estates require no new negroes; but such seldom or never come into the market, because the humanity and prudence of their proprietors and managers, precludes the grand cause of the ruin of those citates, namely, the destruction of the negroes. Whether something of the obscurity alluded to, does not appear in the estimates given by certain W. Indian historians, let those, who are capable, judge. Yet certain it is, that large crops have been made and even sworn to, purposely to enhance the price of estates offered for sale, and on such crops some W. Indian estimates are evidently founded. But neither affadavits nor estimates, contain any account of the negroes murdered, by producing such forccd crops, nor of the cattle destroyed by conveying them to the Shipping places.-See the note, p. 354.