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hope and request, that every attention might be paid to this important object. It would not have been their fault if not one school had been set on foot in the Colony; and even in that case they would have been able most satisfactorily to answer Mr. Thorpe's charge. Their letters and offers of providing for the expense of schools are, of themselves, irrefragable proots of their having attempted civilization.” Special Report, P. 69.
Now we refer it to the plain sense of our readers whether or not, in the passage of the Sixth Report which we have cited, the same delusion is not kept up, nor was it till the exposure
of Dr. Thorpe, that the confession was made. Because a man means to do a thing, he is not therefore justified in asserting that he huis done it; to our common understandings the predicaments of in posse and in esse appear very distinct. Since, however, the representations of Dr. Thorpe, a Master and Mistress, Mr. and Mrs. Sutherland, have actually been fitted out.
Upon the subject of plants, &c. sent out by the Institution, there is much assertion and counter-assertion on each side; as far, however, as we can collect, we are of opinion, that the Institution appear, in this respect, to have done their duty; and that if they had acted in every other case in a similar manner, they would have been entitled to the thanks of the nation. On the other band, however, we must confess, that their pretended survey of the coast of Africa, even from their own account of the business, appears to us a perfect job.
We now come to another charge of Dr. Thorpe against the Institution, which involves much extraordinary inatter, respecting the instructions sent out by the Directors to the Navy on the subject of capturing foreign vessels concerned in the trade. By the influence of the Directors, commentaries, framed by themselves on the Slave Trade Felony Act, and on the Treaties between Portugal and this country, were transmitted to the Coinmanders of his Majesty's ships of war on the West India and African stations, and to the different Courts of Vice-Adiniralty, where they were received and acted upon as constituted authorities. We inust confess, that Government suffered them. selves “ to be saved the trouble of thinking” in a very extraordinary manner, when they suffered these edicts of a society of private gentlemen, to be received as instructions by our Navy and our Courts abroad. As inight be supposed, these instructions were erroneous in the extreme: and such representations were made on the part of the Portuguese aud Spaniaris, on the illegal captures and condemnations which liey producer, that in May 1813, new instructions were framed liy Lord Castle. reagh and sent to the Admiralty, to remedy the evil... In addition to this, the nation have to place ļlie loss of 300,00allap this interference on the part of the African Institution, which sum was, by a convention with the Portuguese Government, dated January 21, 1815, paid to Portugal" in discharge of claims for Portuguese ships detained by British cruizers previous to the first of June, 1814, upon the alledged ground of carrying on an illicit traffic in slaves *." After, however, having stated in Report VIII, that these subsequent instructions “substantially accord with the construction which the Directors forinerly Tentured to put on the article," when pressed more closely, they allow, in their Special Report, that these instructions were materially erroneous.
" Mr. Thorpe blames the Directors for the information they gave to the Navy in their Fifth Report. In one point, that in formation was certainly erroneous; namely, in their stating it to be necessary that vessels carrying on the Portuguese Slave Trade should have been built in the dominions of Portugal, or condemned in a Portuguese Court of Admiralty. But this, though an erro. neous opinion, was one in which, at the time, Mr. Thorpe himself appears to have entirely and unreservedly concurred, as may be seen from several of his own decisions ; particularly in the cases of the Calypso, Urbano, and Paquete Volantè."-Special Report, P. 84.
The Report then proceeds to recriminate upon Dr. Thorpe, who, in some instances, appears to have formed notions as er: roneous as their own.
Now all this, as our readers will observe, is an excellent answer to Dr. Thorpe, but a very bad one to the public, who have lost both money and character by their unconstitutional interference.
Dr. Thorpe brings forward another case, in which the vioJence of the friends of the Institution clearly led them to a most illegal act. Three men, Brodie, Cook, and Dunbar, were tried and copdeinned under the Slave Felony Act, for trading in the Rio Pongas, a territory not belonging to Great Britain, before Mr. J'urdie, a surgeon, who has been appointed by the Governor, Judge of the Criminal Court during the absence of Dr. Thorpe. These three convicts were brought to England under their sentence, but have recently been pardoned by our Goverunent, on the ground of their having been tried and convicted, according to the Special Report, without any lawful jurisdiction. But here again, in the usual style of recrimination, Dr. Thorpe is again referred to as baving instituted a precedent, in the illegal trial and conviction of Sanuel Samo, which was
* “ Vide Papers respecting the Slave Trade, presented to both Houses of Parliament, p. 48.
followed by his successor, Mr. Purdie. Let us now hear Dr. Thorpe in his own defence.
“ Governor Maxwell, without my knowledge, sent his Majesty's schooner Vesta to the Isles de Loss, had Samo and Hickson seized, and dragged from their houses, as prisoners to Sierra Leone on a suspicion of slave trading. I never had seen the 51st of the King, Chp. 23, at this time, it was only in Governor Maxwell's posses. sion. I did not wish that the Slave Trade should be encouraged, by shewing that the authorities in the Colony had no power to control the traders residing in the Rio Pongas, nor did I wish that the Governor, who had ordered those men to be seized without sufficient authority, should be ruined by damages and disgrace; which inevitably would have been the case, if Samo and Hickson had been liberated, and had proceeded against Colonel Maxwell. It was also of the most vital importance to the cause of Abolition, that these men should not be permitted to escape without trial, because on their discharge they would have returned to their factories, revived the Slave Trade with increased vigour, and en couraged many others under the impunity by which they would have discovered themselves shielded." I therefore advised that Mr. Biggs should be sent to the Rio Pongas, to prevail on the King of the Soosoo nation, and the chiefs around him, to permit the process of our Court to extend to the white men in their dominions, which was granted, and a sufficient number of competent witnesses were subpænaed and brought to Sierra Leone. Hickson was acquitted; and after the jury had given a verdict of guilty against Samo, I endeavoured to prove to Governor Maxwell that the prisoner could not be legally convicted under the act. He would not be convinced, and produced the Edinburgh Revietu to satisfy me I was wrong; however, I told him, as I could not pass sentence on Samo, he had better induce the native King, the Chiefs,and the Slave Traders, in the country where Samo had so long resided, to petition for his pardon, and, as an inducement to have it granted, so. lemmly promise that they would renounce the Slave Trade for ever; this they did, and Samo was iiberated. When the miserable predicament into which I was thrown is considered, I leave it to the nation to determine, whether I served the Abolition cause, and saved Governor Maxwell or not.” Dr. Thorpe. P. 59.
Now allowing, as we must do, that Dr. Thorpe went somewhat too far in the conviction of Samo, yet it cannot be maintained that the case was a precedent for any future proceedings, but on the contrary was a warning against them. The frainers of the Special Report, in their zeal against Dr. Thorpe, too often appear to forget that fairness, which, in their self constituted appointment of judges, they are bound to maintain.
The next point to which our attention is turned, is to the treatment of the captured Negroes, which appears even from the confession of the Special Report, to be very little better than Dr. Thorpe would represent it.
“ Mr. Thorpe exclaims with great vehemence against the prac. tice of entering the captured Africans into his Majesty's sea and land service, as being slavery under another name. It is obvious, however, that here, if his complaint were ever so well founded, the law, and the law alone, is in fault; and no blame fairly attaches either to the servants of Government, or to the African Institution. The Directors indeed, have great reason to fear, that abuses may have existed in the recruiting department; but they believe that those abuses exist no longer; and that the only question which need now be agitated respects the expediency of continuing the present system of enlistment, as the same is authorized by Act of Parliament." Special Report. P. 114.
Now it is somewhat extraordinary, that in their Fifth Report, the Directors claim the credit of this very Act of Parliament, as founded
their own resolutions. Be this as it may, the compulsory enlistment of these recaptured captives, who are shipped off to the distant colonies, to America, or wherever it may be convenient, appears to our understanding, much the same sort of thing as slavery in the West Indies; the only difference seems to be, that in the one instance a spade is forced into their bands, in the other a musquct.
The apprenticeship also, as it is termed, of these poor captives, is, in reality, a state very little removed from actual slavery, From our ears being long accustomed to the term in England, we are apt to suppose that the condition of an apprentice in England and in Sierra Leone, are the same thing, whereas no two couditions can be more opposite. In England, the advantage is justly considered to be so far on the part of the hoy, that the master receives a sum of money, and the profit of the boy's work during the apprenticeship, as a recompense for the benefits which he confers on the boy in teaching him his trade. Whereas, in Sierra Leone, the advantage is all on the side of the master, who, as we bave seen, is willing in many cases, to purchase this advantage with money. It has been customary in this Colony, to apprentice, and re-apprentice, or to enslave, and re-enslave grow'n men, who thus work for their master's advantage, learning no trade by which they may be enabled after the term of their apprenticeship to maintam themselves, but continuing in a stale of wretched subjection for food and cloathing, without any claim upon their masters in their age. If the public would have a proper idea of Sierra Leone apprentices, let them witness the labour of the convicts from the hulks. Here then there is an intended delusion in the name; siące, however, this matter has been agitated, the Special Report has given us an extract from a private letter from the Colony, in which we are triumphantly informed in italics, that " Of late there have been no more ap
prenticed," prenticed.' A tolerably clear confession of the wretchedness of that condition.
We shall now present our readers with a painful view of the miseries undergone by these poor negroes, on their landing at Sierra Leone, extracted from the first letter of Dr. Thorpe ; observing at the same time, that in the Special Report, it stauds not only uncontradicted, but in part allowed.
“ As soon as the captured negroes were landed, and delivered to the care of the Superintendent, a party from the African Corps was sent to examine them; and as many as they found peculiarly fit to be made soldiers, were marched to the fort, and as it is termed, enlisted; though the poor negro knew not what was said, or done to him. The remainder were dispatched to what was called an hospital, a wood building, composed of two rooms, with an open communication, where the whole were huddled together in promiscuous intercourse, men, women, and children. . The re'cruiting party for the West Indian regiments were afterwards allowed to select the men and boys that were fit for, or might shortly become fit for military service.
“ The women and girls were next selected for the basest of purposes *.
“The best of the rising generation were reserved for the plantations and farms of those in authority over them; and lastly, the settlers obtained the refuse as apprentices for fourteen years, to make them hewers of wood, carriers of water, and drudges on their Cassada ground.
“ Thus we seized our allies property, because under their treaty, we declared they had no right to enslave those unfortunate beings; and then, without any treaty, in violation of our national declaration, and the promulgation of our determination to dispense impartial justice and universal benevolence to the Africans, we disposed of, and dispersed them with arbitrary appropriation ; we allowed them to touch the law of England, only to be torn from its protection; to change their masters, not their condition ; and fortuitously better or embitter their original destinations ! Surely this is a national disgrace that cannot be suffered to continue !
“ The captured negroes are delivered by the marshal of the court into the care of the superintendent, who is answerable for every one of them; let him be obliged to make a return of all the
* “ To induce the black soldier to regularity, he was allowed a wife and a ration a day, but the lady he changed as he thought proper ; whatever woman he called his wife, got the ration; and when a party was sent to the West Indies, the situation of the women became most deplorable. The conduct of those high in office, with respect to the captured negro girls, is now under consideration."