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lowing year (1824), the subject was through the commandant of the quarter.

again brought before parliament by ministers, who stated their intention, after what had occurred, to try their plan of improvement in one of the conquered colonies, which were governed immediately by the Crown; and for this purpose they selected Trinidad. The regulations were afterwards to be extended to Demerara, Berbice, the Cape, Mauritius, and St. Lucia, with variations adapted to the peculiarities of the Dutch and French laws. With regard to the intentions of government towards the rest of the colonies, which are administered by their own legislatures, the ministers stated that they should continue to admonish them to take the steps recommended; and if their admonition failed, they should resort to compulsion by vexatious taxation. But they declined to agitate the question of direct interference.

To encourage marriages, it was determined, that if two slaves obtained the consent of their master or masters, and produced it to the guardian of the slaves, he should give directions that the marriage should be solemnized, according to the rite of the Church of England, or such other Christian church as should be most agreeable to the parties. Should the master of one or both of the slaves refuse his consent, the guardian, on application from one of the slaves, should summon the master or overseer before him to hear his motive; and if it appeared unreasonable, or if his conduct were arbitrary, the guardian might authorize the marriage, notwithstanding such refusal. To prevent the disunion of families, it was decided that, in the sale or transfer of married slaves, husband and wife should not be separated, but should be sold in one lot, and transferred to their new owner, with their children. The property of slaves, in land and goods, was secured to them, and they were enabled to dispose of it by bequest; they were also enabled to sue in their own names, in regard to their property, and to lay it out at interest in Savings Banks. The expense of registering manumitted slaves was to be paid out of the revenue of the island. The slave was to have a right to purchase, not only his own freedom, but that of his wife, child, sister or brother. If any difficulty should arise about the price, the chief judge was to arbitrate between the parties. The testimony of slaves was to be received, provided the slave could procure a certificate from his minister, that he understood the obligation of an oath, which was to be

The regulations designed for Trinidad were as follows:-The procurador syndic of the Cabildo of the town of Port Spain, was confirmed in his ancient office of protector and guardian of the slaves; the commandants of the several quarters of the island were declared his assistants; and notice of all actions and suits against slaves was required to be given to the guardian, who was obliged to attend the trial. All markets were to be discontinued on Sunday, and the employment of slaves, between sun-set on Saturday and sun-rise on Monday, was prohibited. The whip was not to be carried as an emblem of authority; the practice of flogging females was abolished, and imprisonment or the stocks substituted; no male slave was to be punished for any offence until twenty-recorded by the guardian of slaves; but four hours after its commission; and not more than twenty-five lashes were to be inflicted in any instance, in one day; no second punishment to be ordered until the lacerations of the previous flogging had disappeared; and no punishment whatever to take place unless one person of free condition were present, besides the person by whom it should be performed. A ruled book was to be kept on every estate, in which the owner or manager was to record the punishments exceeding three stripes, the number of lashes inflicted, the reasons for the punishment, and the names of the persons attending it, a copy of which was to be regularly returned upon oath to the guardian of slaves,

not in civil cases, where the interest of their masters was directly concerned, nor in criminal cases, affecting the life of a white.

These regulations, which embrace the same objects as were recommended in Lord Bathurst's circular to the other colonies, were embodied in an order of council, and promulgated in Trinidad, on the 24th of May, 1824; and began to be acted on, on the 24th of June. Great resistance was every where opposed to the order, and a remonstrance was addressed to the governor, Sir Ralph Woodford, to suspend it; bat in vain. In Jamaica, some disturbances took place amongst the slaves after the last session of the Assembly, on which

occasion twenty-four slaves underwent the | mons; when the House declared that a punishment of death. The House of scandalous and daring violation of the Assembly, in a report, attempted to law had been committed on that occasion, qualify these disturbances as insurrections; and that they would assist the governbut after a careful perusal of the trials ment in securing protection and toleraof all the slaves, we can come to no such tion in all the colonies. During the latconclusion *. In July 1824, Lord ter debate a leading abolitionist (Mr. Bathurst addressed a second circular to Brougham) announced his intention of the governor of Jamaica, and the gover- bringing in a bill, next session (in case nors of the other colonies, requiring them the colonies did not change their conto recommend the Trinidad order to the duct), to provide that Negro evidence different legislatures, and at the same time should be admissible quantum valeret; announced that two bishops would be forth- to prevent the use of the whip in the case with sent out. The Jamaica Assembly, of women, and as a stimulus to labour; to still further exasperated, refused all amend-attach the slaves to the soil; and to prements in their slave-code, and rejected, vent the holders of property in the colonies by a majority of thirty-four to one, a bill from filling public offices there. for the admission of slave-testimony; and public meetings were every where held in which the most violent and indecent language was indulged in against the parliament. In Barbadoes and Tobago, a shew was made of amending the slave-laws; but the new laws, in effect, contain no material improvements. There is no intelligence from the rest of the West India colonies of any subsequent change having taken place, in any respect t. Two bishops have since been sent out according to Lord Bathurst's promise, one for Jamaica, and the other for the Leeward Islands, who are to have the control of the church .clergy.

We have always believed, that if the enmity and intemperance, which the West Indians and the friends of the Negroes mutually exhibit towards one another, were suspended, it would be found, that the difference of their intentions is much smaller than either party conceives, at present. The design of the abolitionists is to cure the confessedly enormous evils of slavery, by emancipation; but if they be asked whether their object is to be effected immediately or by degrees, none but the most imprudent, and the least trusted among them, will pronounce for immediate enfranchisement. On the other hand, it is In the meantime, in the session of by no means a love of the institution of 1824, the case of Smith the mission- slavery which actuates the West Indians. ary was brought before parliament; but If it could be shewn, that their estates without effect. Last session, the case of could be cultivated after its abolition with Lecesne and Escoffery, two free persons the same advantage as at present, they of colour, who were sent out of Jamaica would readily abandon it; as it is, in fact, by the governor, without trial, as aliens, attended with great danger and inconon the alleged ground of their having main-venience. But since the evil was not tained an improper correspondence with Haiti, and with conspiring to supply the slaves with arms, was also brought forward; and it was arranged that the commissioners in the West Indies should make inquiries into the business, and that a committee of the House of Commons should be appointed, next session, to make a proper investigation afterwards. The case of the missionary, Shrewsbury, was afterwards brought forward and canvassed in the House of Com

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created by themselves, for their particular interest, they maintain that they ought to be indemnified for all losses which could be traced to a change; and that they ought to be especially satisfied that their existence would not be endangered. The abolitionists themselves cannot deny the justice of these claims.

One of the main objects, therefore, in any plan for emancipation-after providing for the personal security of the West Indians-must be to prevent their suffering by the transmutation of slave into free-labour. If such transmutation operate slowly, we cannot see that their interests would be entitled to consideration; as they would have time to accommodate themselves to the change; but

if it produce immediate bad effects, they may justly call for indemnity, in proportion to the suddenness with which the change shall have been wrought.

that" they can, if they choose, with very "little trouble (in the day and a half per week), raise much beyond the wants of "the utmost ambition or profligacy." The Assembly of St. Vincent's, in their address, dated September 4th, 1823, state that, by cultivating their provision grounds a day and a half in the week, the slave "may not "only derive a comfortable, and it may be said, independent subsistence; but a sur"plus, for which he can, at all times, procure a ready sale, and be thereby enabled "to purchase some of the luxuries of life, "which never reach the lips of thousands of




other places, the quantity of labour requir-
ed, is even less. President Boyer declares,
that the soil of St. Domingo is such, that
half an hour's labour a day, will raise a
week's subsistence-" un sol où l'homme,
"qui travaille une demi-heure par jour, ob-
"tient sa subsistance pendant une
"maine." M. Malouet, formerly minister
of Marine and Colonies in France, who bore
a special commission from his government
to examine into the character and habits of
the Maroons in Dutch Guiana, states, that
they found one day in the week aban-
dantly sufficient, in the fertile and genia:
soil of the New World, to supply all their
wants. In Cayenne, after the enfran-
chisement of the slaves, by the decree of
the French Convention of 16 Pluviose,
An II., their wages were fixed by the
Colonial government, at "deux sols par

Although many strong facts have been adduced, to prove that cultivation can be carried on most profitably by free labour; it will be found, on a close scrutiny, that they are not applicable in the present state of the West Indies. It is indisputable, that—man for man-a slave working from fear, will not accomplish so much labour in the same time, as a free-man working from the ex'pectation of gain; and, consequently, although the maintenance, wear and tear," the happiest peasantry in Europe " In and other cost of a slave, should amount to no more than the aggregate of a free man's wages, the work of the latter will be the cheaper; because there will be more of it. That there must be other principles in operation, is manifest from the planters uniformly persisting in employing slaves: nor will it be a sufficient answer to this objection, to state, that the planters are either obliged to do so, or lose the value of the slaves; for, in that case, the price of the latter would have permanently fallen, instead of remaining steady, or, at least, retaining its proportion with the rest of colonial capital. A distinction may be taken between the amount of wages which the labourer is willing to earn, and that which he is compelled to take by the value of labour in the market: the first being, of course, measured by the quantity which the la-jour§;" from which we must understand bourer desires to have; and the latter, by that which his competition with his fellow labourers determines the capitalist to give. If the wages, which he is willing to earn, be earned with less labour than the capitalist wants, it is obvious that the labourer has the latter greatly in his power; it is equally obvious that, in such a case, the principle of competition does not come into operation. Hence it is impossible to decide whether free labour would be dearer or cheaper than that of slaves, without first knowing what quantity of wages the free Negro would be willing to earn.

It appears that the Negro slaves have about one day and a half out of the seven, in which to cultivate their provision grounds; and this allowance affords them time enough to raise, not only sufficient to eat, but to buy superfluities. Sir Ralph Woodford, the governor of Trinidad, in an official letter to the Under Secretary of State, dated August 3d, 1817, states,

that the day's maintenance of a Negro could be bought for a penny English. The plantain, which requires less labour even than the potatoe, is the principal food in Guiana; and it appears, on the authority of Baron Humboldt, that land yields 133 times more food when cultivated in plaintains than if sowed with wheat; and 44 times more than with potatoes. The least favourable of these authorities shews, that a Negro needs labour, at the utmost, only one day and a half out of seven, to procure ample subsistence for the week. It would be idle to suppose

*The abolitionists have denied this fact; but sistency, against the impediments which prevent at the same time they exclaim, with great incoathe slaves from purchasing their freedom, of which the means must be derived from the provision grounds.

+ See Propagateur Haïtien, No. I, as cited by Mr. Stephen, in "Slavery Delineated."

Brougham's Colonial Policy, vol. ii. p. 415. § Malenfant, Des Colonies: Paris, 1814

labour, with one-third of the gross produce: but the inducement was found insufficient; and at last, Victor Hugues, the governor, was obliged to resort to the guillotine and military execution, to suppress their insubordination: but even these additional measures failed, for the planters met the same fate as those in Cayenne.

that he would devote more time to labour, | capital remained, were accordingly ruined unless he had an immense train of addi- for want of hands. In Guadaloupe, tional wants to satisfy, which all parties after the decree of 16 Pluviose, the goadmit do not exist at present. The main vernment fixed, that the Negroes of each incentive to exertion, amongst the labour-plantation should be rewarded for their ing class, after providing for one-self, is to support a wife and children; but the most intemperate advocates for the emancipation of the Negroes grant that they have no such motive; since the total absence of marriages amongst them, is the theme of their most violent criminations against the colonists. The climate renders the two other leading objects of labour-lodging and clothinginfinitely less necessary than in European countries. Accordingly we shall find the truth of this conclusion established by evidence in the strongest manner. All the witnesses from the British islands, whose evidence is given in the celebrated Report of the Committee of Privy Council, in 1788, concur in stating the invincible repugnance of the free Negroes to all sorts of labour. Messrs. Fuller, Long, and Chisholme, state, that the free Negroes in Jamaica were never known to work for hire; and the Committee of Council of the island, besides corroborating the assertion, add, that the free Negroes are averse to work for themselves, except when compelled by immediate necessity. Mr. Brathwaite, the agent for Barbadoes, affirms that, if the slaves in that island were of fered their freedom, on condition of working for themselves, not one-tenth of them would accept it. Governor Parry avers, that the free Negroes are entirely destitute of industry; and the Council of the island add, "that their confirmed habits of idle"ness make them the pests of society*.' Under the administration of Toussaint l'Ouverture, laws were passed to compel the enfranchised Negroes, to work on the plantations, by military punishment+; and Dessalines and Christophe found it necessary to resort to measures of coercion, besides providing that the labourers on each plantation should have one-fourth of the gross produce; and yet it does not appear that these regulations produced the desired effect. In Cayenne, it was found impossible to make the enfranchised slaves labour; and the whites, in whose possession the

Report, 1788, part iii.

+ Crisis of the Sugar Colonies.

Code Henri, Loi concernant la Culture. Titres I., et II.

If we take the longest time indicated by these authorities, and add another day to provide for the clothes and lodging, which the Negroes would be obliged to pay for themselves, in a state of freedom, we shall have the produce of two days and a half's exertion out of seven, as the total amount of wages which the free Negro seems willing to earn. Should the planter, therefore, require him to devote the remainder of the week to labour, for hire, the Negro would fix nearly any price he liked; and accordingly, the former must be either ruined, or his returns must be of the most extravagant description, to support such an outgoing. Few considerations are necessary to shew that the latter is impossible. The present cost of a slave's food is the value of his labour during one day and a half, out of seven, and it may be calculated that his lodging, clothing, and cost price, amount, on an average, to about a day more; making together the price of free wages, at the rate, beyond which the desires of the free Negro do not seem, at present, to extend. In the returns of the West India planter were large enough to support the cost of free labour for the rest of the week, the profits which he now puts into his pocket from slave labour, must be enormous, but we need only recall the recollection of our readers to the state of colonial affairs, during the last twenty years, to shew that the very contrary of this has taken place; the returns, in fact, having been hardly enough to support slave labour, with a very moderate profit. There is even still stronger evidence to corroborate this conclusion :-it appears, on the authority of M. Say, que les manœuvriers les plus "grossiers, ceux dont la capacité n'est pas "supérieure à celle du Négre esclave,se font payer, aux Antilles, leur journée, sur le


§ Malenfant.

pied de cinq, six, sept francs, et quelque- | in the slave states bears to the aggregate "fois davantage." Governor Mainwaring wages of the free cultivators. Inferences says, that the price of ordinary free labour have been drawn from the superior cheapin St. Lucia is six livres a day for men, ness of free labour in Russia and Poland; and three for women; and for handicrafts- and from the sort of enfranchisement, nen nine livres +. Mr. Kilber, Commis- which the slaves enjoy in those and other sary Judge at Havannah, under the Slave- countries, from the masters finding it trade regulations, states, that in Cuba, a profitable to assign them task-work in common field Negro earns four reales de lieu of forced labour. It has, moreplata (half a dollar) a day, and is fed; over, been alleged, that the wear and the salary of a regular house-servant is tear of a free servant, though equally from twenty to thirty dollars a month, at the expense of the master with that besides being fed and clothed; and me- of the slave, generally costs less, because chanics are paid from ten bits, or reales, it is managed by himself. It might to three dollars a day‡. These rates would be sufficient to reply to the latter armake, at a medium, 901. a year for gument, that the loss in the wear and wages, supposing them to work the tear of a slave is taken into the account whole week. The average cost of a good at the time of purchase, and diminishes slave is about 801., which at 10 per the purchase money, like the chance of cent., on account of its being a life-in- death, or the wear and tear of a machine. terest, is 81. per annum; add 201. per But it is manifest, that these minor arguannum for the value of the day and a half ments must be unimportant, so long as which he is allowed for his provision there is so little approximation between ground, and 101. for clothing, lodging, &c. the cost of buying and maintaining a slave and we shall find a sum of 401. for the in the West Indies, and the wages which annual out-going, instead of 901. But, the facilities of obtaining food, and the when we consider that it is nearly impos- conveniences of the climate would enable sible to procure a freeman to work on the him to exact if he were set free. It has sugar plantations, at any price whatever, been argued, that the increase which the difference will be infinitely greater. has taken place amongst the free blacks, by birth, shews that the Negroes have the same inclination to work diligently as the whites. We have already adduced posi

Much fallacious, or, at best, useless reasoning might have been spared, if this important fact had attracted more attention. The planters have urged the indo-tive evidence of the contrary; but it may lence of the free blacks as an objection to manu-mitting the slaves, and a good deal of discussion has taken place on the question, whether the Negroes are naturally more indolent than the whites; as if all men were not indolent, when they have no adequate motives to exertion. On the other side, an argument has been drawn from the greater dearness of land in the free states of America, as compared with the price of soils possessing the same advantages in neighbouring slave states, to shew the superior cheapness of free labour. It does not appear that the fact as stated, rests upon much observation; but, even if it be true, nothing can be inferred from it affecting the case of the West Indies, unless it be shewn what proportion the cost of maintaining and buying the slaves

* Economie Politique, vol. i. p. 280, ed. 1817. See Papers laid before Parliament, in explanation of the measures of Government, for the

melioration of the Slaves, 1825.

Slave-Trade Papers, class A, laid before the

House of Commons, 1825.

be added, that an increase only proves, that they work enough to procure sufficient means of subsistence to breed on, which we know, from the example of Ireland, will suffice for that purpose, when of the most miserable and limited kind. Adam Smith even avers, that a half-starved Highland woman will breed twenty children. Sugar is raised in Bengal and other parts of the East Indies, it is alleged, at a vastly cheaper rate than in the slave islands; and in the East Indies labour is free. It does not distinctly appear, that labour is altogether free in the East Indies, and if it were, its low price is the mere result of competition; unless the institution of distinct castes of cultivators and labourers may be supposed to exert some influence. According to Mr. Colebrooke, it seems, that slaves may be found in Bengal, among the labourers in husbandry, though in most provinces, none but freemen are so employed. The price of their daily labour, when paid in money, may be fairly

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