Page images

two months ago. His detention can hardly be accounted for by the supposition of contrary winds, or calms. We daily expect his arrival with 150 liberated Africans, for whom we have prospectively provided employment and places from the moment of their landing. As nothing is easier than, from the first, to make them support themselves, I am resolved so far as my agency goes, that they shall do it. It will be all the better for them; and let the funds thus saved, be spent to more useful purposes.

August 27th, 1827. I had finished the last period, when a messenger from Montserado, announced the arrival of the Ship Norfolk, together with the distressing intelligence of Dr. Peaco's death.-Having gone down the river, I found Dr. Todsen ashore, and learnt that the Africans on board, were in good health. The Norfolk has had a passage of forty-one days from Savannah, -brings a very ample cargo of Lumber, Tobacco, and other stores for the Agency but along with them, I receive a renewal of my appointment from the Secretary of the Navy, and express instructions not to blend the affairs of the United States agency, so far with those of the Colonization Society, as to use any of the provisions and stores of the first, for the sustenance of emigrants, sent out by, or attached to the last.

Of the 142 Africans delivered from this Ship into my hands, it

may be interesting to the Board, as a proof of the extensive business and resources of their Colony to observe, that not more than twenty remain, even at this early date, (only seven days arrived,) a charge to the United States. Two-thirds of the whole number have situations in the families of the older settlers, for terms of from one to three years. The remainder are at service on wages, to be paid them at the year's end-when it is my intention to treat them in all respects as settlers, the natives of the United States, (unless the Board shall in the interim, see fit to order differently,) and assign them their lands, as to other emigrants.

I have, however, engaged to all who engage these people, whether as apprentices, or on service for wages, “materials for one suit of clothes, and one month's provisions, or its equivalent in tobacco, for as many as they take.”-And this trifling quan

tity, forms the last object of expense to the United States, which, it is expected, will ever arise on their account.-And for this early relief, they are wholly indebted to appropriations made, however cautiously and sparingly, towards the Colony; the members of which, to repay the benefits received from the United States, thus take the burdens, which would, without them, still continue to press heavily; and fulfil the benevolent intention of the Government towards the re-captured Africans, in their most extensive sense.

The "Infirmary of Invalids” has gone into operation fullyand at present enjoys the kind and assiduous attention of Dr. Todsen, the United States' Agent. It has, to-day, eighteen patients, (including five indigent women and children,) all afflicted with ulcers, or eruptions.

It is gratifying to report the progress of our Schools. They are all, as formerly stated, under Mr. George M’Gill; comprehended under one system: and afford instruction to every child-native and American-belonging to the Colony, all of whom are obliged to be sent. To defray the expense of carrying on the plan of instruction, besides the surplus fund remaining in the colonial treasury, after defraying the expenditures belonging to what are called in America, the "civil list," and "judiciary;" a general subscription of the Colonists, raises 1400 dollars per annum; including a subscription of the Agent, on the part of the Colony, for 300 dollars. Of this sum of 300 dollars, I shall pay, at least one half in country produce, &c.; and should be glad of the consent of the Board, to draw, if necessary (I shall not, otherwise,) on their treasury, for the other half.This system supports four very numerous schools—and pays our Librarian-whose annual allowance is fifty dollars.

Owing to the pressure of my innumerable duties at the present time, and the danger of too severe application so soon after a severe illness, I am obliged to defer for a few days, to be forwarded by the “Norfolk,” much detailed information, in part collected, but not quite prepared, to be sent by the "Eclipse."

In regard to the Sesters-Our establishment there is on a much better footing than ever: and the indefinite extent of fertile territory connected with it, secured to, and in the quiet occupancy of the Colony, by a tenure which we have no reason to

[ocr errors]


expect will ever be disturbed, or controverted. Mr. Warner, with four colonists, assisted by native labourers, is carrying on successfully the public factory, and the public and private improvements, of that station. The temporary suspension of the factory last February, March, and April, led to a discovery of the extent of our influence with the people, and the strength of our hold upon the country, which possibly no other event could so fully have proved.

Our establishment and affairs on the St. John's, are in the same prosperous and even train, as at the date of


last advices. The factory is filled with valuable country produce which we have not at present the means of bringing away. The Chiefs have lately given us a new proof of the sincerity of their engagements with the Colony-and of their determination to abandon forever the slave trade.

A French Slaver appeared off the river in June, with a small Schooner containing a valuable cargo. The Chiefs assured him that the country belonged to the Americans—that they were themselves under the protection of the Colony; and that, if he landed his cargo, he would forfeit, and lose it.-But one of their number, possessing more artifice than honesty, encouraged the Frenchman to bring his small vessel over the bar, and trust himself with his cargo. The Frenchman did both; but in entering the river, lost his rudder. Information was now sent to the Cape, with a request that a force might be despatched from the Colony, to seize vessel and cargo, for an invasion of our territory for unlawful purposes. I was absent—but the Vice Agent declined to comply with the request-but warned the chiefs of their solemn engagement to desist entirely from the slave trade. The vessel, in the extremity of distress, arrived at the Cape. No relief was afforded her; and she went ashore, and was lost. Her cargo is of course detained by the Chiefs, who accuse themselves of no breach of faith, under the circumstances of the case, in seizing it for their own use.

Junk has undergone no change. We have only to regret our want of larger vessels to justify the expectation which we have raised in the minds of the country Chiefs, by keeping up a brisker intercourse with the stations which they have ceded to us.

The Colonists are this evening convened to prepare an ad

[ocr errors]


dress to their American brethren, agreeably to the wish intimated to them on the subject, in the last letters received from the Board. It may not be embellished with the exterior ornament of polished language. I fear it will suffer on account of the faults of composition; but one quality I know it will carry along for its recommendation-truth, and the honest sentiments of the people. It is the wish of a majority of our sensible settlers, that emigration may not be overdone-of some, that it may be suspended for a couple of years—that from a concentration of the industry of the Colony for that period, its institutions may acquire stability, and its foundations, solidity and strength. And there is a general dread felt of the consequences of too favourable an opinion of the state of the Colony getting ground in America. Certain I am that a majority of their number, will never concur in an address suspected of such a tendency. Whatever it proves to be, may its effects be useful.

The recent instructions which I have received from the Department of the Navy, have thrown a number of purchases, made of the "Eclipse," upon the funds of the Society; for which my former instructions authorized me to draw on that Department. These I shall make, both in the present and every future instance, as light as possible—and believe it will be long before so expensive a year as the past shall recur.

I have made a requisition on the Navy Department, for 50,000 cyprus, juniper, or yellow pine Shingles, to be sent out by your next charter. Should this requisition be declined, I beg the Board to send at least one half that quantity. Our African timber, though firm, is not durable

and roofs covered with African shingles, which are expensive, do not often outlast the third year-not unfrequently become useless in 12 or 20 months! Covered with the shingles above named, they will remain good from eight to twelve years.

Being now apprised of the intention of the Board, to send out another company of emigrants, "early in Autumn,” we shall provide accordingly.

The Board may expect much more detailed accounts by the Ship Norfolk, which will sail about the middle of September, for America.-Meantime I desire generally to acknowledge the receipt of two several letters of instruction from the President of the Board, by the ship, together with two emigrants, and ten barrels Beef, and ten barrels of Pork.

Respectfully, Gentlemen,

Your Servant.


[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

An unfinished Journal of a visit to the Windward, in November and December, 1826.

March 6th, 1827. Hitherto the intercourse of the Colony has been chiefly with the tribes to the leeward of Cape Montserado. The character of these tribes, the nature of their pursuits, and the productions of their country, differing widely from those of the windward people, and inviting to the formation of commercial connexions with them, drew them at an early period into a very familiar relation with the Colony—which has suffered no interruption, up to the present time.

But while in the state of the windward tribes, there was nothing in these respects, to invite, there was much to repel our familiarity. They are distinguished from their Southern neighbours by an extreme jealousy of the interference of strangers, either in the country trade, in their territorial jurisdiction, or their civil affairs. The different orders of their people, originating in birth, office, and wealth, are more distinctly marked; and the rights of the superior grades are very proudly asserted, and maintained. These self-styled “gentlemen," as a necessary incident of their condition, possess the political power of the country, and monopolize its trade. Their superior intelligence united with a thorough education in all the arts of deception practised in the African trade, render it extremely difficult for such as deal with them to gain a moderate profit on their barter and quite possible for them to suffer very heavy losses. Believing themselves equal to the management of a wholesale trade, they make their advantage of this pretension, but poorly

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »