HC Deb 31 May 1850 vol 111 cc528-93

said, it was with great diffidence and a great feeling of his own inefficiency that he brought forward so great and important a question before the House of Commons. But feeling as he did that this question was of great importance to our West India colonies, and as it seemed to him of still greater importance to the interests of humanity, he had ventured to throw himself on the kindness of the House. He must say at the beginning that he brought forward this question in no spirit of hostility to Her Majesty's Ministers. If he were to turn to the men who had done most to promote the interests of humanity so far as the slave trade was concerned, he should turn to those Gentlemen who now occupied the seats below him. And he must return his thanks to them on this occasion for what they had done, at various times and in various ways, to prevent the extension of, and to put down, the slave trade. It was his intention not to treat this matter as a matter of trade. He was well aware of the great importance of this question to our West Indian colonies, and very shortly he must enter into the condition of those colonies, for they were so intimately connected with the question of the slave trade that it was totally impossible to separate the two. But his object was to consider this question as a question of humanity, as a question of high principle rather than as a question of trade, or as a question affecting the prosperity of our colonies. He would very shortly, in the first instance, remind the House of the alterations that had been made in the sugar duties. It was of course well remembered that it was in 1841 that the first proposal was made by the Whig Government of that day to introduce slave-grown sugar at not an equal duty, but at a duty which was at that time supposed sufficient for it to compete with sugar from British possessions. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Tamworth took a different course. The course that he took during the time that he was in office was to reduce the duty on free foreign sugar, but jealously to exclude the produce of those countries which carried on the slave trade. In 1844 the duty on foreign was 34s., and on home sugar 24s. per cwt. Some further alterations were made, and in 1846 the measure was introduced by Her Majesty's present Ministers on their accession to office, against which he made his chief complaint. It was quite true that in 1848 an alteration was made, the measure of 1846 was in some degree altered, and the immediate effect was certainly mitigated for a time. He thought no one would deny that in 1848, at a time when a noble Lord, who was now no more, the late Lord George Bentinck was Chairman of the Committee, that the greatest distress existed in the West Indies. That distress was brought before the House in an able manner by Lord George Bentinck and by the hon. Baronet opposite, and in consequence of that Her Majesty's Ministers, who had previously declared their intention to adhere to the Act of 1846, introduced a measure by which the effect of that Act was greatly mitigated, and the disastrous effects of it were postponed. Now he did not wish to say to the House that at the present moment anything like the distress that existed in 1848 now existed in the West Indies. The fact was that the Act of 1848 had been very beneficial to the West Indies, and they were enjoying for a year or two a comparative respite from their evils. But still these accounts of great prosperity were, in his opinion, not true. The fact was, that they were just able to get on. They were in a condition that was just satisfactory for the time, but he saw nothing in the condition of the West Indies which should lead one to suppose that in two or three years from this time, when the duty on their sugars would again be brought down to the level of the duty on foreign slave sugar, that at that time they should not have as great distress in the West Indies as they had had before. He wished to draw the attention of the House to a passage from a despatch of Governor Barkly to Earl Grey, in June, 1849, describing the condition of British Guiana:— At the present moment, indeed, with reduced wages and increased prices of produce, sugar cultivation must again become remunerative, and for a time, at least, the abandonment of estates be arrested. But I cannot help feeling apprehensive at the same time that any fresh attempt to reduce wages at a crisis like this in the history of the negro, might turn the scale against industry and civilisation, and in favour of a bare subsistence and comparative barbarism; and yet such an attempt will become inevitable under the present Sugar Bill, unless the restoration of commercial prosperity on the Continent, or other causes, combine to sustain the adventitious improvement in the demand for sugar which the failure of the crop this year in Cuba has, providentially for the British colonies, occasioned. Such was the effect of the Bill of 1848 in British Guiana. Notwithstanding the excellence of the soil, the price of estates was much reduced, and he had heard that the estate of the bishop, which not long ago had cost 30,000l, sold lately for 6,000 dollars. That, at all events, showed the colonists did not anticipate permanent prosperity under the Act of 1848. He had also received a letter from a Quaker gentleman, Mr. Alexander, travelling in the West Indies, which gave no very glowing idea of the state of the colonists, or of their prospects for the future. He said— I do not feel it (the importance of excluding slave-grown sugar) the less strongly, now that I have seen a Large portion of our own West Indian colonies. In some of these colonies the depression is truly serious to all classes, and will, I fear, should the low prices of sugar rule during the present year, lead to a considerable diminution of the cultivation of that staple. Although there remains much in which the Christian must rejoice in the change from slavery to freedom, the Sugar Act has in no small degree contributed to despoil that measure of its legitimate benefits to all classes of the community. In some newspapers great stress had been laid on the present favourable condition of the West Indies, which was affirmed to have resulted from the operation of the Act of 1846. According to that Act the protective duty was now 6s. 6d. per cwt., or 6l. 10s. a ton; in July next it would be 1s. 6d. per cwt.; and in 1851 it would entirely cease. By the present protection the planters were just enabled to keep their heads above water, and that was all. Now, as far as he was informed, the exportation of machinery, and such like means of extensive cultivation, were, except in particular cases, and to a very limited degree, not going on as they did go on to the West Indies. And now let them turn for a moment to the condition of Cuba. The exports of sugar from Cuba had increased from 145,000 tons, in 1840, to 270,000 tons in 1850. He thought it likely that the power of exportation of sugar from Cuba was likely to increase still further. It is true that the number of slaves in Cuba altogether was diminished, but the production of coffee was greatly diminished, the export having been reduced from 24,000 tons to 10,000 tons; and Mr. Kennedy, who was employed by the Government, and who was living in Cuba, wrote home word that 38,000 slaves had been transferred from the cultivation of coffee to the cultivation of sugar. In another letter he stated that a large number of slaves who had been employed in the making of railways, were now employed in the cultivation of sugar. Under the stimulus we had given them by opening our market to them, the importation of slaves had increased, and was likely to increase. This was Mr. Kennedy's account:— The planters are actively intent on the promotion of their interests. They are proceeding with unremitting assiduity to obtain the best machinery and carry on their business under the best systems they can learn. Meanwhile the Government is also aiding them, by going on with equal pace in promoting the prosperity of the island. Coals are not only admitted free of duty, but the vessels bringing them are admitted at a reduced tonnage duty. Public works on all sides are wisely carried on. New roads and bridges are in course of construction in every direction, and railroad companies encouraged and supported. Harbours are improved, and opened to trade, so that both internal and coasting communications are facilitated. He believed that ten years ago Cuba was far behind any of our colonies in the manufacture of sugar. At present they were quite equal to any of our islands, and probably beat them in producing the best sugar at the cheapest cost. He would not enter generally into the state of Brazil; but there also the quantity of sugar exported had been considerably increased, and there also a very great degree of prosperity prevailed among the planters. One thing, however, was remarkable in the state of Brazil. The Emperor of Brazil, in making his speech to the Cortes not long since, informed them that their agriculturists were in great want of labourers, and recommended them to supply that want of labour by some means, thereby showing that, notwithstanding what we considered a great degree of prosperity, they contemplated increasing their cultivation. He must say that, in his opinion, it was not likely our West India colonies could compete with such countries as Cuba and Brazil, who were enabled to renew their population by importations of slaves. It seemed to him that so far as slavery was concerned, they could compete with America—they could compete with the French colonies, and with such countries as Surinam, but not with such countries as Cuba and Brazil, where people were enabled to buy slaves as they bought horses, and to work them night and day without regard to their lives. He held in his hand an extract from a Surinam paper, which set forth the melancholy condition of that colony, and stated that the number of their slaves was greatly reduced, and it was absolutely necessary to set them free, in order that the colonists might be enabled to continue their cultivation. If it were the simple question of the colonies alone, considering the many experiments we had made in the West Indies, he should have been disposed to treat them with more tenderness and to give them a greater length of time than had been allowed by that House; but, at the same time, be must say that it was not on account of the West Indies, but on account of the great question of humanity which it involved that he was induced to press this matter upon that House. For fifty years this country had considered that no effort was too great, that no sacrifice was ill made, to put down the slave trade. In 1815 they gave instructions to the Duke of Wellington, by which he went abroad and proposed that a convention should be made of the different States of Europe by which they should prohibit the importation into their respective dominions of colonial produce from within the territories of Powers that refused to enter into that convention. We were to prohibit even at that time slave-grown produce from countries where the slave trade was still carried on. He found that at that time we gave a great sum of money—300,000l., besides remitting a debt of 400,000l. to Portugal, and 400,000l. to Spain, to induce those countries to put down the slave trade. It was quite unnecessary to remind the House that we gave 20,000,000l. in 1833, in order that slavery might be extinguished in our own colonies. He thought every one would acknowledge that if there was one principle which this country had maintained during the present century, at home and abroad, it was, that, having abolished the slave trade and slavery in our own country, we would do all that in us lay as a great and Christian nation to put it down in foreign countries. He hoped the time would never come when we should give up that great principle. He remembered the words of an American who unfortunately was himself a slaveowner, who, alluding to this subject, said, "I tremble for my country when I remember that God is just." He thought we might tremble for our country if we should arrive at the day when we gave up the great principle that the slave trade was to be opposed by every means that was likely to be effectual. There were some objections certainly employed against any efforts by means of a duty to repress and to keep back the slave trade in Cuba and Brazil. He was told that if they wished to keep out slave-grown articles, they should keep out not only sugar, but also cotton and tobacco—and that while they introduced cotton and tobacco, they had no wish to keep out sugar. Now, he saw no reason why he should not oppose an evil that he could successfully oppose, because there were other evils that it was impossible for him to oppose. But he thought, if any one looked at the history of our cotton trade with America, he would see that that was an example rather to be avoided than followed. We first introduced cotton from America at the beginning of this century. At that time, unfortunately, we held slaves ourselves, and, therefore, could not consistently tell the Americans we would not admit their slave-grown cotton. And what was the consequence? At this moment we were obliged to admit it. We had a vast population dependent on a manufacture which was carried on with cotton which was produced by slaves, and slaves who, he was sorry to say, were in a state of great misery and degradation. Now, if fifty years ago we had been in the same condition we are in now with regard to sugar, had we then introduced cotton from some other place, and very little from America—had we made a stand at the time and said, "We will admit free cotton, but will not admit slave grown cotton,"—would any one tell him that by this time we should not have had an ample supply of cotton, not grown by miserable and ill-fed slaves, but by freemen? Therefore, so far from following the example of cotton, he was inclined to avoid that example, and at all events if he could not oppose the introduction of slave-grown cotton, he could, he thought, provide the people of England with sugar grown by freemen. He thought it well worth while to make an effort and oven some sacrifice in order to effect so great a purpose. Then it was also said, that if we excluded slave grown sugar from this country, the effect would be that that sugar would go abroad—that foreign free sugar would come to this country—and that we should not thereby discourage slave-grown sugar. Now, that argument was theoretically true, but practically false. Cuba and Brazil took a different view of it. They considered it of the greatest possible importance to them that this market should be open to them; and the day on which we, unfortunately, as he thought, admitted slave-grown sugar into this country, was kept as a day of rejoicing in Cuba. The plan of the right hon. Gentleman opposite to keep out slave-grown sugar, and to admit foreign free sugar, seemed to him a wise one, and it was a great misfortune that it was not more strongly adhered to. He confessed that, for his part, he should far prefer a return to that plan. He thought that the West Indies bad nothing to fear from free-grown sugar; he thought that they had everything to fear from slave-grown sugar. But if it were said that it was quite impossible to return to that plan, then he would rather keep a differential duty on all foreign sugars; he would rather, instead of gradually decreasing, gradually increase, the duty on foreign sugars. And now let him ask the House for one moment to consider what was the condition of the slave trade. Let the House reflect for a moment on what was the effect of any measure that they took which clearly promoted the slave trade on the coast of Africa. He did not mean to harrow up their feelings by descriptions of the horrors of the slave trade in its different forms, but let him beg the House for one moment to consider the misery that was produced in the case of every slave that was captured, the miseries produced by his original seizure. In each case, perhaps, a whole country was thrown into confusion and despair by the attack of some hostile tribe. Let him beg of the House to remember the destruction of life and the misery caused by the detention of the slaves in those horrible places which were called barracoons. Let them remember that if they were supplied by slave-grown sugar, they were supplied by the blood of those men who were carried across the Atlantic in those awful prison houses the slave ships. There might be some difference of opinion as to the misery of slave ships at present compared with what it was fifty years ago. He would avoid entering into that question, but would simply call attention to Mr. Wilberforce's description of a slave ship, in 1807, fifteen years after the slave trade had been regulated by an Act of Parliament. His statement was, that no greater amount of misery could be inflicted on human beings than was endured in a slave ship on the middle passage. The condition of those poor creatures was probably no better now. On their arrival at Cuba no description of human misery could be more desperate than their condition. In some instances 500 slaves were shut up on one estate without a single female; and during crop time they were worked eighteen hours a day. Our vice-consul of the Brazils said, the slaves were treated worse than beasts; and their lives were mostly at the disposal of their masters. In the following year, Mr. Goring stated that their hours of relaxation had been curtailed, the increased demand for sugar in the European markets inducing the planters to work their mills night and day, in order that they might take advantage of the favourable opportunity. The fact was, that if, for the sake of supplying the people with cheap sugar, they chose to admit the slave-grown sugar of Cuba and Brazil to a free competition, they would promote in a great degree the utmost amount of misery, degradation, and suffering, that could possibly be conceived in any human condition. In addition, the amelioration of Africa by civilisation or otherwise would be prevented. The slave trade was the great bar to this, and to anything like commerce; above all, it was the enemy of the missionary and the great bar to the gospel. For another reason he earnestly desired to check the course we had taken. At one time this country had great influence over foreign nations on the subject of slavery; now that influence was much diminished; for, by admitting slave-grown sugar at an equal duty with our own, we exposed ourselves to the contempt of foreign nations, and to the charge of being slavetraders ourselves for the sake of getting sugar a penny a pound cheaper. He held that the man who bought the sugar produced by the slave, was as bad as the man who bought the slave that produced the sugar; in moral guilt there was no great difference. At all events, it was a very inefficient humanity to let free our own slaves, and not only to encourage other people to keep theirs, but to buy more. He hoped hon. Members on his side of the House would forget the hallucinations into which they had been led by free trade, and would return to those high feelings of morality which they had formerly evinced on this subject. He hoped that those who had been led away by the hon. Member for Manchester and others, would quit their leadership for once, and return to the good old course of opposing the introduction of slave-grown sugar. No one could deny that the effect of the Act of 1846 had been, and must be, greatly to promote the slave trade of the Brazils. The report of the Parliamentary Committee on the Slave Trade, which sat two years, and of which he had the honour to be a Member, declared unanimously— That the admission of slave-grown sugar for consumption in this country has tended, by greatly increasing the demand for that description of produce, so to stimulate the African slave trade as to render any effectual check more difficult of attainment than at any former period. The right hon. Member for the University of Oxford had said on a recent occasion—"If you really meant to oppose the slave trade, you should never have passed the Act of 1846;" and there was scarcely a Member in the House who had not, at some time in his Parliamentary career, declared most distinctly that the admission of slave-grown sugar would increase the slave trade, and that it was necessary on that account to keep it out. He hoped that hon. Gentlemen opposite, who were in a different position from the free-traders, would not vote against this Motion, while agreeing with it in their hearts. The right hon. Baronet the Member for Tam worth had, in 1846, declared most distinctly and forcibly his impression, that the Act of 1846 was likely to increase the slave trade; and though, from motives of policy, he then refrained from opposing the Government, those reasons had now passed away, and he hoped the right hon. Baronet would be disposed to alter his vote. He appealed to the country with great confidence, satisfied that the people would willingly and gladly forego any advantage which they might derive from cheap sugar, if the House would take upon itself to maintain a high principle, and declare, on the ground of humanity and justice, that it was unjust to expose free-labour sugar to a competition with slave-grown foreign sugar. Would the House declare by their vote that night that they were determined to take a course which would tend, by keeping out slave-grown sugar, to repress the slave trade, they would be backed by the opinion and the support of the great majority of the people of England. He must say further, he thought a blessing would rest upon this country if they would have the courage to adopt that course.

Motion made, and Question proposed— That it is unjust and impolitic to expose the free-grown Sugar of the British Colonies and Possessions abroad, to unrestricted competition with the Sugar of Foreign Slave-trading Countries.


seconded the Motion. It was not without difficulty and some pain that he felt it his duty to take a course which might embarrass the present Ministry, and he was desirous of avoiding any course which might afford the slightest opportunity to hon. Gentlemen on the opposite side of the House to substitute a system of protection for the present system of free trade. But he thought that this particular subject stood quite distinctly by itself. The slave trade had no resemblance to any of the trades carried on by this country. He confessed that the vote which he was about to record that night in favour of the present Motion, would be inconsistent with the course which he had taken when the Sugar Bill was discussed in that House; but he conceived that when his opinion of a measure had become altered by its operation and effects, it was his bounden duty not to be ashamed openly to confess his error. And he might add, that if his present was inconsistent with his past conduct on this subject, it was not influenced by any interested motive. From the different accounts which he had heard from time to time from our sugar-growing colonies, he felt convinced that, if the present differential duties on sugar were reduced, it would be utterly impossible for them to continue the cultivation of their estates; and thus, whilst the owners of those estates would be reduced to poverty, those natives of Africa whom they at present employed, and in whose behalf this country had acted so noble a part a few years ago, would be left altogether destitute, and, from their present state of comparative comfort and civilisation, must relapse very speedily into a state of wretchedness and barbarism. He maintained that it would be highly unjust to subject our colonies, who employed free labour, to competition with the sugar growers of Cuba, who employed slave labour. At the present prices, the great mass of the people of this country were enabled to be consumers of sugar; and on behalf of the proprietors of estates in our colonies, and the black labourers in their employ, he deprecated any further reduction in the sugar duties.


said, he fully agreed in the terms of this Motion—that it was unjust and impolitic to expose the free-grown sugar of the British colonies and possessions abroad to unrestricted competition with the sugar of foreign slave-trading countries. For many years he had felt that this was unjust, and had urged the House to take measures for enabling our free labour in the West Indies to compete with slave labour elsewhere. He was not one who could be accused of inconsistency, for from the moment when emancipation was proposed in 1832, he had always maintained the opinion which he now supported. The colonies could not exist without labour; yet it had been the policy of this country to compel them to compete with slave labour, but to refuse them that supply of labour by which alone they could so compete. He had the authority of some individuals having great interest in the West Indies to state broadly that they did not want protection. They thought it unjust to throw on the people of England an increased price for an article of so much importance. Though having property in the West Indies, those who had looked most correctly at the matter did not think, after what the Government had done, and after the sacrifices that had been made, that England ought to be longer subjected to protection in their favour. That protection recently amounted to about four millions a year; and they were of opinion that no such tax was necessary, and that that was not the way to put down the slave trade. Could free labour be fairly brought into competition, the produce would be cheaper than that of slave labour. There was no other mode of putting an end to the slave trade; the whole united fleets of England, France, and America, if employed on the African coast, could not prevent the smuggling of slaves which now prevailed. Nothing could go to the root of the evil but to make the produce of free labour cheaper than the produce of slave labour; then the slave trade would cease as a matter of course. The hon. Baronet the Member for South Essex might have referred to the report last year, containing au account of the horrors of the slave ships, which were even worse than in the time of Mr. Wilberforce, and the mortality was greater. Let the hon. Baronet review the question on his own principle of humanity, and see whether the condition of the slave had not been rendered worse by our interference. No people could have acted on more honourable principles than this nation had done; and yet in this, the seventeenth year since emancipation, the export of slaves from the coast of Africa was as great as ever. What then was to be done? As Mr. Canning had pointed out, thirty years ago, the population of the colonies ought to have been prepared for freedom by being trained to labour; but nothing of the kind had taken place. The following were the resolutions proposed by Mr. Canning on the 16th of May, 1823:— That it is expedient to adopt effectual and decisive measures for meliorating the condition of the slave population in His Majesty's colonies. That, through a determined and persevering, but at the same time judicious and temperate enforcement of such measures, this House looks forward to a progressive improvement in the character of the slave population, such as may prepare them for a participation in those civil rights and privileges which are enjoyed by other classes of His Majesty's subjects, That this House is anxious for the accomplishment of this purpose, at the earliest period that shall be compatible with the well-being of the slaves themselves, with the safety of the colonies, and with a fair and equitable consideration of the interests of private property. Committees of both Houses had sat on this question, in 1832, and that of the Commons (of which the late Sir F. Buxton was chairman) reported that they had only had time to examine the parties in England in favour of emancipation, and recommended that the inquiry should be resumed in the next Session, as to the best means of carrying out emancipation, by the examination of witnesses from the colonies. In the next Session Lord Stanley had at once proposed the emancipation. He had opposed it throughout, on the ground that the Committee had not completed their inquiry. The colonists were evidently as anxious for emancipation as the people of England, but they did not wish to see their property sacrificed. The feelings of the House being against him (Mr. Hume), he had ceased his opposition to the measure, merely protesting against the haste with which it was sought to be carried. What had been the result? The noble Lord the Foreign Secretary had been most energetic in his efforts to put down the slave trade, by means of treaties with France and other Powers; but notwithstanding all this, the trade still flourished as much as ever; and in the last three or four years, he understood no fewer than 25,000 negroes had been sacrificed on the passage. The question recurred—were we acting on a right principle? He maintained the negative; for we refused to our colonies that supply of labour which was necessary to enable them to compete with slave countries? Thus we had not only failed to put down the slave trade, but had ruined our colonies—the depreciation of property could not be estimated at less than 100,000,000l. sterling. In Demerara estates were daily going out of cultivation; the condition of the people was becoming worse; schools were decreasing, and missionaries were leaving the colony. In British Guiana the evidence before the Committee of last year showed the deplorable state to which the colonists were reduced. The protection given having utterly failed to produce the advantages desired, and nothing but starvation and ruin having been the result, it was natural to look to some other remedy for the evil. The Anti-slavery Society were opposed to the only means by which the slave trade could be effectually stopped—the introduction of African labour under proper guarantees and protection. But when measures were proposed for the introduction of Coolies, the Chinese, or other classes of persons, the society declared that these measures had not, would not, and could not succeed. But why should they not? Why could not proper precautions be taken to protect the African labourer? No part of the execution of the law, as between the planters and the negroes, was left to the planters themselves. The House themselves paid the salaries of magistrates, whose duty it was to see justice done, and the law carried out. Why, then, this alarm? Why should it be said that it would be impossible to permit the introduction of Africans into our sugar colonies without reviving the slave trade? The proposition was to bring them from a state of slavery, to prevent them from being destroyed upon the middle passage. He would land them upon our possessions, and apprentice them for two, three, or four years, under a legal bond and form, with their privileges and duties set forth in the indenture, and magistrates to protect them. The hon. Baronet the Member for South Essex pointed out no means by which an additional supply of labour was to be provided. He had nothing to propose but the continuance of the differential duty. If the House agreed to this Motion, and made no provision for free labour, the slave trade would go on notwithstanding. He (Mr. Hume) was opposed to protection of every kind, particularly when he saw how ineffectual it was, and had been, to put down the slave trade. The colonies did not want protection. There was virgin land enough in the West Indian colonies, if labourers could be obtained at fair and proper wages, to produce more sugar than the British islands could consume. If, as he believed, with a proper supply of capital and labour, enough sugar could be brought to this country to enable us, as we used to do, to export some to foreign countries, we should then put an end to the detestable traffic in slaves. Let the Government take abundant precautions to protect the African labourers—let them buy the slaves who were brought to the African coast for the South American market, if they would; for, was it not better to buy them and to bring them over to the West Indian colonies as apprenticed labourers, than for them to be destroyed in the barracoon or on the middle passage? He might not be in that House to recall his prophecy made many years ago to the recollection of the House; but, before long, unless they gave a supply of labour to our colonies, they would cease to be productive, and their once happy population would revert to a state of barbarism. The hon. Member for Newcastle under Lyme, stated on a former occasion that there would be no difficulty in obtaining emigrants from the coast of Africa, because the chiefs would prefer consigning them to the English, to selling them to the Portuguese. He did not see any injustice or cruelty in this. On the contrary, the condition of the African would be greatly bettered, whilst, at the same time, they took the only means of putting an end for ever to the slave trade; because he had no hope of seeing it put an end to, except by cheapening the production of sugar in their colonies and underselling in the continental markets that which was the produce of slave labour. The measure which he now called upon the Government to adopt was recommended in the report of the Committee of 1841, over which Lord Sandon (now the Earl of Harrowby) presided. It was proved before that Committee that in 1841 no people had so many comforts and enjoyments—that none were more remarkable for sobriety. Sir C. Metcalfe, in reference to Jamaica, stated in a despatch to Lord Stanley, dated Nov, 1. 1841— With respect to the labouring population, formerly slaves, but now perfectly free, and more independent than the same class in other free countries, I venture to say, that in no country in the world can the labouring population be more abundantly provided with the necessaries and comforts of life, more at their ease, or more secure from oppression, than in Jamaica; and I may add that ministers of the gospel, for their religious instruction, and schools for the education of their children, are established in all parts of the island, with a tendency to constant increase, although the present reduction of the missionary schools is a temporary drawback. I turn from the cheerless prospects of the future to a more pleasing feature in the present order of things. The thriving condition of the peasantry is very striking and gratifying. I do not suppose that any peasantry in the world have so many comforts or so much independence and enjoyment. Marriage is general amongst them. Their morals, are, I understand, much improved, and their sobriety is remarkable. The Governor of British Guiana, Sir H. Light, said of that colony in September, 1841— If I were not convinced that the unhappy Africans are benefited by the transfer to this colony, I should not so urgently press the continuance of Her Majesty Government to immigration; thus the African's condition must here he improved, as the men of their own colour are in a high state of civilisation. Religious instruction administered in fifty-seven places of public worship; each parish has at least two schools, and each missionary has a school at his own residence, (fee. A day's task is understood to be seven hours, and the average rate of agricultural wages 5–12ths of a dollar. Mr. Latrobe, in his report of 1839, speaking of Trinidad, said— There were thirty-five day and fourteen Sunday schools, but now increased to fifty or sixty schools. The soil of Trinidad is a rich marl, and were there a sufficiency of labour, every British market might be amply supplied with sugar from this one island. Hence, foreign sugars would be excluded, and the slave trade, as it refers to Great Britain, would be practically discouraged. It is, therefore, my deliberate conviction that the people would gain an accession to their religious privileges by quitting any part of the Western Africa for the island of Trinidad. Well, then, with these facts before them, was it not evident that the condition of the I African would be greatly benefited by his introduction, under proper rules and regulations, into their colonies? It was quite true that Coolies imported from India were unfit for the species of labour required; and the immense expense of their importation by reason of the distance, and also the expense of sending them back, rendered the traffic unprofitable. He called on the House to assist in bringing about such a change, for the sake of the unhappy African himself; for it was only by doing so, and not, as proposed by the Anti-Slavery Society, by maintaining restrictive duties, that they could ameliorate his condition and put an end to the traffic in slaves. If, therefore, the hon. Baronet consented to the addition of the words he (Mr. Hume) proposed, he would support his resolution.


wished briefly to state the reasons which induced him to vote as he would do on the present occasion, which were founded chiefly on his sense of the injustice with which the West Indies had been treated. He agreed in every word which had fallen from his hon. Friend the Member for Montrose. He conceived it was the bounden duty of the Government, when the emancipation of the slaves took place, not to permit the introduction of free labour under a species of restriction, but to have done everything in their power to promote it. He maintained that free labour was always cheaper than slave labour; but if they confined the market of labour as they did in the West Indies—if they prevented the West Indian planter from procuring free labour where he could find it, they were doing all in their power to verify and prolong that condition of things which the Anti-Slavery Society were in the habit of describing. He had been in India when the proposition for the immigration of Hill Coolies into the West Indies had been made, and he remembered the outcry which had been made at the period—an outcry to which he had been always opposed. And he maintained if that system had been carried out under proper regulations, it would have been productive of great good. But the Government at home had been influenced by the solicitations and the representations of a party who had described the system as only a species of slavery in disguise, and it had accordingly been put a stop to. He had some difficulty, he confessed, in coming to a conclusion as to the course which he would take on the present occasion, until he saw a manifesto put forth by a society to which allusion had been made that night, and which the hon. Baronet the Member for South Essex represented. They would not agree to any importation of free labour to the West Indies, except on terms which he (Mr. Mangles) looked upon as absolutely impossible to be complied with. He could not, therefore, vote for the Motion of the hon. Baronet.


said, that after having spoken on the question of free trade from cart, and cask, and bench, and hustings, and tribune, and pulpit, he did not wish to be charged with inconsistency in the vote he intended to give. He was therefore desirous of explaining, that though free-traders laid down the doctrine that the way to make a commercial gain was to buy in the cheapest and sell in the dearest market, they never extended their doctrine to questions where the creation or maintenance of immorality was concerned. To give an illustration—somewhat rude—of his meaning, he did not suppose that any hon. Member, in his anxiety for cheap goods, would go into that part of the metropolis called Field-lane in search of a silk handkerchief; because it was notoriously a receptacle for stolen goods. So in like manner, there was nothing in free trade to prevent him from voting for a duty on slave-grown sugar, if a moral benefit would result. But he must take the opportunity to make the most decided opposition to anything under the title of apprenticeships. In the years 1808, 1809, 1810, he was Governor of Sierra Leone, where the system of what was called apprenticeship had been introduced, and it was a mere system of collusion, and nothing but slavery under another name. Now, if even in Sierra Leone it was impossible to prevent this collusion, how much more so would it be in the West Indian colonies? If anything of the kind was attempted, it would merely open the way for a system of imposition and a wasteful expenditure of public money. On the coast of Africa, too, the effect of purchasing apprentices would be exactly the same as of purchasing slaves. The kings and chiefs in Africa would find no difference in a name, and they would carry on wars under one title with as great glee as the other. The pretence, too, that it was to be done for the sake of the religious advantages to be conferred on the transported African, was nothing but what we had heard of before. All that was very old, and was thought to have been disposed of sixty years ago in the debates on the original slave trade. Believing that free trade did not imply the support of immorality, he should give his vote in support of the Motion.


was anxious to state that he would give his full concurrence to the Motion of the hon. Gentleman the Member for South Essex. He could not, however, join in the eulogy which he passed on the Government for having done so much to put down the slave trade, because the admittance of slave-grown sugar subverted all which they had done before. The hon. Gentleman said that the West Indies were in a more pros perous state. This he totally denied. British Guiana was more than three-fourths abandoned, and production in that colony was in a state of stagnation. Governor Barkly, upon the same subject, in his evidence before the Committee, observed that the population were on the verge of degradation, in consequence of the decrease in the amount of wages. As a further proof of the state of property in British Guiana—he spoke from personal knowledge—an estate, which formerly produced 10,000l., was sold the other day in the London market for 2,000l. He agreed with very much which had fallen from the hon. Member for Montrose. All he wanted was the importation of free labour. The planters had not sufficient money, and unless the Government supported them, they could not enter into that speculation. It was impossible for the proprietors in that colony to condense their labourers sufficiently to obtain an adequate control over them, or create around them such natural wants as to induce them to be desirous of amassing a large sum of money. In supporting the Motion of the hon. Gentleman, he did not ask the Government to take any retrograde step. He only asked them to take a straightforward step—to put down slavery by cutting off the demand. He asked them not to permit slave-grown sugar to come into competition with free-grown sugar. The agreement respecting the apprentice was broken, the Government held no faith with the West Indian proprietors upon that question, and the Act of 1846 completed the ruin of their sugar-growing colonies. He wanted to know, in the face of the progress of the slave trade, did they mean still further to diminish the duties, and to abolish the differential duties which now exist? The people in the West Indies were waiting in a state of great excitement the result of that night's debate, which would be carried out to them by to-morrow's packet; and he hoped that the result would be such as to enable them to see, if not an end of their sufferings, at least some hope of redress. By the mail which had just arrived, he found that the slave trade was increasing in the Brazils. He wanted to know why treaties should have been made with foreign Powers, if it was not intended they should be kept; and why England should be left in the Quixotic position of sole occupant of those seas where, if all the navies of all the Powers were to be stationed, they could scarcely effect the object they had in view. They lived in an age of extreme religious as well as of extreme political views. Could anything be more extraordinary than that the House of Commons should, upon one day, pronounce, by a largo majority, against the Government its resolve to maintain the sacredness of the Sabbath, and its horror of the profanation of that day as regarded post-office labour, and yet, upon the next, they should affirm, by a large majority, that slave sugar ought to be received in our ports; and that, though they would not permit au Englishman to work for two hours on Sunday, they would encourage a slaveowner to oblige his unfortunate dependents to toil twelve or sixteen hours on the Sabbath? They strained at the post-office gnat, but they would swallow the slavery camel. The Manchester school boasted of the great increase of intelligence, learning, and morality amongst us, and were desirous of seeing the people at home spiritually instructed; but they were totally regardless of the condition of the unhappy slaves, and were utterly indifferent to the notorious fact that, in the West Indies, the chapels and schools had, since the operation of our policy, been deserted. They talked of solemn obligations contracted in the face of the world; but they showed the world that their professions were not sincere, by evading the principle which these professions seemed to indicate. Every foreign State laughed at our ridiculous position, and despised our professions of sincerity, so long as we indirectly, but most effectually, encouraged slavery. He had a right to expect the support of hon. Gentlemen on his side of the House, and more especially of the peace party; for no armament could so surely put down slave importation as the prohibition of slave-grown sugar in our markets. The Emperor of Brazil said in his speech—and the Emperor took a little more care of his agriculturists than we did in England—that "he hoped they would all adopt measures for supplying their agriculturists with labour, the want of which was daily increasing." Slave labour, of course. [Mr. M. GIBSON: He did not say slave labour.] He could mean nothing else; and every man who knew anything of the state of Brazil must understand him in that light. The deaths of slaves in Brazils, from captivity or cruelty, were so great as to increase the otherwise large importation of slaves. In 1847, 73,000 slaves were imported into Brazil, and the importation had since then increased—a pretty significant sign of the efficacy of our measures. Hon. Gentlemen would equalise the condition of the British agriculturist, and, whilst expressing great horror of the trade in slaves, were quite willing to eat the bread made out of American wheat raised by slaves, or the sugar of the Brazilian slaveowner. The prospects of the British farmer were on a par with the colonial planter. Nor was there any prospect of a rise in the price of corn, seeing that land in America was cheaper than here, and burdens lighter, and, indeed, there was a greater breadth of wheat sown in America in this than in any previous year. [Mr. HUME: How do you know that?] He knew it to be so, and would prove it to be so when the proper time arrived. Could his hon. Friend say it was not so? In America there was the same mongrel and hybrid policy as in this country. The question neither there nor here was based upon principle. It was not, shall slavery be or be not tolerated? but, in what form can we tolerate it? Let them just consider a portion of their policy upon this subject—with reference, for instance, to the King of Dahomey. From that slave-hunting, slave-dealing King, the Queen of England had condescended to receive presents, as appeared from the evidence of Captain Winniett. They would see what sort of a king this was by an extract from the evidence given before the Lords' Committee:— Will you proceed with your statement with respect to the King of Dahomey?—When I visited the King, he gave me to understand that he and his army were at all times ready to fight the Queen of England's enemies, and to do anything that the English Government wished him, except doing away with the slave trade; the king is willing also to permit Englishmen to form plantations in his country. You have stated that the King of Dahomey is anxious to be on good terms with the Queen of England; what could we give him as an equivalent for that 300,000 dollars which he derives annually from the slave trade?—There has been a sum offered, but a very small one, not more than 500l. sterling annually for seven years. If in these razzias the King of Dahomey takes 8,000 slaves, how comes it that he only sells 3,000; what becomes of the other 5,000?—The other 5,000 are kept for his troops. He distributes his plunder amongst his captains and the troops for them to sell?—Yes. Then he keeps 3,000 to himself?—He keeps 3,000, or perhaps more. Is this slave hunt in his own territory?—No, it is not; they go to war on the different tribes around his dominions. Is there any declaration of war beforehand, or do they march where they will?—They march where they will, generally concealing the object, and the position which they are going to take up, so as to surprise the villages and towns. And your impression is, that the greater number of the slaves are therefore furnished by those slave-hunt wars?—Certainly, And again— Is any resistance made to those slave hunts, which you described as being regularly conducted for two or three months every year; is any resistance made to them by the chiefs?—No; they are overpowered with the force which the King of Dahomey sends against them He has, upon one or two occasions, produced me models of the different forts that his female troops have captured. He has not so many female troops as he has male, and it is those in whom he places the greatest confidence. Who are engaged in his array?—Yes, there are nearly 8,000 of them. I was present at a review of 8,000 women. Do they fight better than the men?—Very much, I was amazed at the fortifications that they stormed, and regularly carried by storm, of which they had models. Are they protected by armour?—From the wrist up to the elbow. What weapons do they carry?—Muskets and swords. Are they foot soldiers or horse?—All foot. Does the King himself command in chief upon the occasion of those raids?—Occasionally. He sends out his captains and generals at all times?—Yes, his captains and generals. Are they women?—They are women, those attached to the female part of his army. Of course, he has male troops also. Do you know the proportion between the female troops and the others?—There were more male than female. There are 8,000 female. He requested that Her Majesty would kindly make him a present of 3,000 war caps for his female troops, and She very kindly sent them to him. This king, it appeared, put great faith in his female army:— Did you get any light upon the reason for having that female army from the King of Dahomey?—He gave me to understand that he could place greater confidence in them; that he kept them only around his person; that in all his castles (he had three) there was never a man allowed to enter; they were what he called his body guard. Were they regularly trained as soldiers?—Yes. Of what age "were they?—All young women; not one beyond 35. After that, do they quit the service, and marry? He pensioned them off, and took care of them; he said he was bound to take care of thorn after they were of no use. Were they allowed to marry whilst in his service?—No. Were they pressed into the service?—No; all voluntary. Natives of his own country?—Yes; remarkably fine women, standing five foot eight, nine, and ten. He now called upon the House to do justice to a long suffering and ruined interest—to do justice to their own moral and religious feelings, and to save those colonies which had cost England so much blood and treasure, but which were now on the brink of ruin. Many of those colonies were now ripe for revolt, and our cruel policy towards them taught them to prefer dependence upon any nation to being connected with this. He asked the Government the plain and simple question. What was to become of the colonies if our present policy was persevered in? Would they blindly and wilfully pursue this terrible system—would they deprive our fellow-subjects of all hope—would they prove to them that our policy was fatal to the planters abroad, and to the agriculturists at home, and that, like the harpies of old, it stained all it touched? He sincerely hoped that, though the Motion might not be carried, the minority would be, at least, so large that it would evince the sympathy of a large portion of the House of Commons for our fellow-subjects in the colonies, who would look upon the present debate with the deepest interest. He hoped, too, that the Members of the Government who had been so chary of speech upon this subject of late, would now attempt to show how, upon any principle of justice, morality, or religion, they could contravene the principle implied in the present Motion.


said, that his hon. Friend who had opened the discussion, and the hon. Gentleman who had just sat down, had placed the question before the House, on very plain and candid grounds; they said that the colonists were in no way indisposed to compete with free labour in any part of the world, and the only thing they had to fear was to compete with slave-grown sugar. Two years only had elapsed since the question was before the House, and there had then been a lengthened inquiry into the position of the British colonies. His hon. Friend, in order to justify himself in bringing this question before the House—when within such a short period it was decided, if not by a large majority, at least by a majority, that the opinion of the House was against the Motion now submitted by his hon. Friend—ought to have shown that during those last two years of past experience he has some ground for basing the Motion now, and some reasons to show that the policy of the Government had not succeeded, and that those colonies are now threatened with more danger than they were at that time. It was now necessary for him to refer the House to the evidence taken before the Parliamentary Committee of 1848, in order that they might see how far the predictions then made with regard to the results of the policy of the Government have been fulfilled. It was impossible to approach this question exclusively as a West Indian question. It was impossible they could exclude from their observations the largo sugar-producing possessions they had in the East. It was impossible to forget that they had, beyond the Capo of Good Hope, one single island now producing 60,000 tons of sugar per annum; that they had possessions in the East Indies that were exporting 75,000 tons of sugar per annum, and that the production was calculated at four times that amount, and they had moreover further, in the East, new possessions in the Asiatic Archipelago rapidly increasing in the production of sugar. It was impossible, in considering the condition of the West Indian colonies, to exclude those circumstances from their attention. He should now proceed to consider the condition of India, Ceylon, Mauritius, and, lastly, the West Indies; he would glance at the predictions made with regard to them, and examine how far those predictions had been verified. With regard to Ceylon, the Committee had as witnesses before them previously, Mr. Anstruther, many years Colonial Secretary, and a planter in that colony; they had Mr. Christian, a very eminent cultivator and merchant; and they were told distinctly that if they did not retrace their steps with regard to free trade, and lay a protective duty on coffee of 2d. a pound more than that now enjoyed, in a few years Ceylon would be a barren waste, and would not produce coffee for exportation. But what was the result? The produce in that year was 20,000,000 lbs.; it was 30,000,000 lbs. in the next year, and in last year it was 40,000,000 lbs., being exactly doubled in the three years, instead of being entirely annihilated. And what was now the position of protection with regard to Ceylon? Instead of being told that Ceylon could only exist by an additional protection of 2d. per lb., they were now told by the merchants of Ceylon that protection to them had become a dead letter, and was entirely unimportant; for notwithstanding the competition to which they were exposed, and the predictions that were uttered in 1846, they had managed to increase their cultivation; and now the importation from the British colonies exceeded the entire consumption of the country, and they had a surplus to export to the Continent, where it would come into competition with the produce of St. Domingo, Brazil, and Java, and the price, therefore had fallen to a level with that of the markets of the world. According to the last accounts they had from Ceylon, it appeared that, instead of 40,000,000 lbs., they would have a supply of 50,000,000 lbs. this year; and it was not the price of that year that caused the increase, for the produce of last year (40,000,000 lbs.) could only be actually brought into use by the price in the preceding years. The next place to which the Committee turned their attention was the East Indies. They called before them several most able officers, and had the advantage of the assistance of some of the most able directors of the East India Company. They had before them Mr. Tucker, Mr. Melville, Colonel Sykes, and other individuals well acquainted with the condition of India. And so important, it was said, was the cultivation of sugar in the East Indies to the trade with this country, that without that produce it would be impossible for the East India Company to receive their annual remittances, which of sugar alone was stated at 1,500,000l. per annum out of 4,000,000l., and that it would be impossible to send out English manufactures, for they could give nothing in return; in short the evidence was of a most discouraging character. Mr. Alexander, who was several years connected with the trade, gave them to understand that if they did not give a protective duty of 10s. per cwt., the importation would fall to 40,000 tons from 60,000 tons, and in a few years they would not receive any sugar from India. A witness from Madras made the same statement. Two years had passed over, and instead of the prediction being realised— instead of there being a falling-off in the importation of the next year to 40,000 tons, it was a proud consolation to be able to say that not only had the importation of the East Indies been maintained, but it had steadily increased up to the present time, and last year it was larger than in any preceding year whatever. And, moreover, from the latest accounts, instead of 60,000 tons of importation as in 1848, when they were taking the evidence referred to, they would receive from 75,000 to 80,000 tons in the present year. The next colony with respect to which they examined witnesses was Mauritius; and, at that time, Mauritius presented a most gloomy picture. The whole of the London merchants connected with the island, with a few exceptions, had become bankrupt, and other persons connected with the trade were in a state of insolvency. They were told by Mr. Guthrie that they wanted a duty of 1d. per pound on foreign sugar as a protection against it; for, otherwise, it was impossible for the cultivation to be maintained in Mauritius, and every cultivator in the island would be ruined. They had had that evidence from Mr. Guthrie and from Mr. Hunter, a large proprietor in Mauritius, and from Sir George Larpent, and Mr. Chapman; and other persons, he believed, gave similar information, and he was not surprised that it made a great impression on the minds of the members of that Committee. What had been the result of this prediction, as shown by experience? For three years preceding 1846, when slave-labour sugar was excluded, the average production of the colony was 34,000 tons per annum; but in the three years succeeding, including the last year, the annual production, instead of 34,000, had risen to 50,000 tons on the average of the last three years; and the crop which was now being shipped was confidently anticipated to be no less than 60,000 tons, being an increase of nearly double the quantity produced in the three years prior to the time they received that evidence. They persevered in the plans they then contended for, and in the policy of the Act of 1846, and instead of the Island of Mauritius becoming a desolate wilderness, it now produced double the quantity of sugar which it produced three years ago. The next place to which they had turned their attention was the West Indies; and what was the average production there in three years preceding the introduction of slave-grown sugar. In 1844, 1845, and 1846, the average importation from the West Indies was 127,000 tons. What was the average in the last three years in these colonies, which they were told could not subsist with a smaller protection than 10s. per cwt.? It had increased to an average production in the last three years of 148,000 tons per annum, and in the present year the computation was from 135,000 to 140,000. ["No, no!"] He could only say that it had been stated to him by the best authorities in the city of London, that the lowest computation was 135,000, and the highest 140,000. After sitting upon that Committee, and hearing all the evidence adduced before them on that occasion, and having derived information from every quarter open to him, he was not for one moment disposed to question the distress and suffering that existed in the West Indian colonies, and the other sugar colonies, in the year past; but it was one thing to admit distress, and another to say that distress was to be cured by a protective duty. They had suffered distress, but not by the withdrawal of protection, but because they were the victims of a vicious system that had existed in years gone by, by which their property was exhausted in some respects and burdened in others, the great weight of which was thrown on the present race of proprietors. In Committee of 1848 one of the most valuable witnesses they examined was a Member of that House—the hon. Member for South Cheshire. He had just then returned from a visit to his property in the West Indies, and he told them that he had been informed by his agent in this country that he had one of the best managers in the West Indies; yet, when he saw the condition of his estate, and the way in which it was managed, it was to him a matter of surprise that he received anything from it. He described the mode of management—that the most ordinary agricultural implements, if not unknown, were unused, and that the labourers used their hands to convey the manure from one place to another, instead of in a barrow or on a fork. The hon. Gentleman took measures to compel the use of proper agricultural implements; and his manager after the first year of his experiment, forwarded to him the annual accounts which showed that, instead of 9,000l., the cost of management under the old system, he had by his improvements saved 3,000l. in one year. What were the general predictions in that House and in the country with regard to the results of the Bill of 1846? They were told over and over again in that House and in the country that the cry of cheap sugar was a delusion—that they might have cheap sugar for a short time, but that they would throw sugar out of cultivation in their own colonies, and that they would be at the mercy then of the slave-growing colonies, who would raise the price as they thought proper. How had this great and favourite prediction been verified? He did not think that there had been any large increase in the production of sugar in the slave-growing colonies within the last two years; but a very great increase had taken place before they admitted slave-grown sugar to this country. The chief increase of production in those foreign colonies took place from 1828 to 1840, when they had a practical exclusion of foreign sugar, as well the produce of free labour, as of slave-labour sugar from this country. He would take Cuba and Porto Rico. In the three years preceding the introduction of the Act of 1846, exclusive of the year 1845, when the hurricane destroyed the crop in Cuba almost entirely, the production of sugar was 250,000 tons per annum: during the last three years the production in these two islands was 300,000 tons per annum, showing an increase of 50,000 tons, being an increase of 20 per cent. In Brazil during three years preceding the Act of 1846, the average production was 97,000 tons: in the three years succeeding it, 108,000, being an increase only of ll per cent. In the British West Indies, the average production of the three years preceding that Act was 127,000 tons; and in the throe years succeeding, 148,000. In Mauritius, the average production of the three years preceding the Act was 34,000 tons: in the three years succeeding it, 50,000 tons. In the East Indies the average exportation of the three years preceding the Act of 1846 was 64,000 tons: in the three years succeeding the Act, 72,000 tons. In the whole of the British possessions the average production in the three years preceding that Act was 225,000: in the three years succeeding, 265,000. So the increase in Cuba and Porto Rico was 20 per cent, in Brazil 11 per cent, and in the British possessions 20 per cent. Therefore, he maintained that the increase of production had taken place as rapidly in their own possessions as in the slave-growing countries. He thought it was capable of proof, that had the sugar duties been left as they were in 1844, when the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth first began to modify them—had they been left with the exclusive supply of this market on the terms on which they then enjoyed it—he believed the condition of the West Indies at the present moment would be infinitely worse than it is now. What was the consumption of sugar in this country under the old law, which gave our colonies a strictmonopoly? In 1810 the consumption of sugar was nearly as high as in 1840. He admitted that in 1810 some small quantity of sugar was used in breweries and distilleries. In 1810 consumption was 196,000 tons; in 1817, 184,000; in 1840,179,000. In 1844 it was 206,000tons, but in 1842 it was only 193,000. Therefore, if they looked at the figures from 1830 to 1844, they had almost an entire equality in the quantity of sugar consumed. In 1845 the first effective alteration in the sugar duties was made. In 1846 the law was changed, as hon. Members were aware; and for the first time the production of foreign slave-cultivating countries was admitted; and what was the history of the sugar trade during the last five years? Though they had a fixed quantity for almost fifteen years preceding 1845, yet from 1845 it had risen steadily, but rapidly, to no less than 300,000 tons a year. Whereas the consumption had been almost stationary for fifteen years preceding 1845: in the next five years, under the policy commenced by the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth, and followed up by the noble Lord at the bead of the Government, the consumption had increased by no less than 50 per cent. Then he had another reason for believing that the introduction of slave-grown sugar into this country had not been of any material consequence, so as to encourage production in the slave-growing countries, for he found in the three years preceding the introduction of slave-grown sugar into this country, the average price of Havana sugar was 23s. 1d. per cwt., and in the succeeding three years it was 22s. 4d.; so that there was no pretence for saying that slave-growing countries had been stimulated in their production by a rise of price consequent upon their admission to this country, and it was a rise of price only which could lead to an extended cultivation. He had alluded to the very remarkable increase that had taken place in the consumption of sugar since the Act of 1846; but they might be told by hon. Gentlemen opposite that they should not boast of it, when it was the result of the introduction of sugar produced by slaves throughout the world. So far from its being true that the slave-growing countries had an advantage in competing, during those three years, over the British colonies, it was, on the contrary, true that during those three years the consumption of the produce of free labour in the British dominions had recently considerably increased; while the consumption of slave-grown produce had in the same time materially diminished. In 1847 the consumption was 289,000 tons in the year, of which 227,000 was free-labour sugar, and 62,000 tons slave-grown sugar; and there had been an increase from 227,000 tons of free-labour sugar to 243,000 tons; and a decrease from 61,000 tons of slave-grown sugar to 39,000 tons. The consumption of last year was 310,000 tons, 253,000 tons being free-labour sugar—a large increase. And what was the case this year? They had an account made up for ten months; and if the next two months bore the same proportion, the consumption would be 318,000 tons, 282,000 tons of which would be sugar the produce of British possessions; while 36,000 tons only would be sugar the produce of slave-labour countries. During the four years in which they had subjected their own planters to the competition of slave-labour sugar, the consumption of their own sugar had increased from 227,000 to 282,000 tons, while the consumption of the slave-labour sugar had diminished from 61,000 to 36,000 tons. Sugar was not the only thing in which their colonies had an interest. The increase would, perhaps, be found greater in other productions. They should take into account molasses, and taking 3lbs. of molasses as representing Ilb. of sugar, they would find the increase of consumption in this country had been no less than from 207,000 tons in 1844, to 317,000 during the last year, 1849. He did not stop there. The rum produced in their colonies in the average of the three years preceding 1846, amounted to 3,095,000 gallons annually, and in the three years since 1846 it had increased to an average production of 5,080,000 gallons. So the average increase of rum was no less than 2,000,000 of gallons during that period. He would call the attention of the House to a very remarkable return which was laid upon the table, upon the Motion of the hon. Member for Dartmouth, in which they would find the production of sugar in all the colonies since 1833 up to the present time. It would be found, on taking the whole of the British possessions, that in the last three years of slavery the entire production was 227,000 tons. During the whole of the period between the cessation of slavery and the introduction of the free-trade measure in 1844, the production was 204,000 tons; but during the succeeding years—during the three years preceding the Act of 1846—the production was 254,000, and in the following three years—that is, the three years succeeding the Act of 1846, and ending with 1849, 268,000 tons. There had been great changes in the production of sugar during the last three years all over the world, which placed the question on a different footing from that which it occupied before. There had been a great increase in the production of sugar, and the entire quantity produced in the world was now estimated at no less than 1,227,000 tons. Of that quantity, the English sugar produced by free labour amounted to 280,000; the French to 60,000; the Swedish to 12,000; the Manilla, Siam, and China, to 225,000; America, the maple sugar of, to 70,000; besides the produce of beet-root, amounting altogether to 697,000; while the produce of slave-labour sugar in the Spanish colonies, Brazil, and Louisiana, amounted to 530,000 tons. They had also, by their legislation, placed the question in a different position. They had very properly allowed the introduction of reined sugar from their colonies and other countries. The people of Holland demanded the introduction of their refined sugar under treaty as a manufactured article, irrespective of its place of growth; the United States of America were in the same position; and they were therefore compelled to admit the introduction of refined sugar from Holland and the united States; and how were they to distinguish whether that refined sugar was the produce of Java or Cuba—of slave labour or of free labour? Then they had repealed the navigation laws, which increased the difficulty of distinguishing between slave and free-labour sugar. If there was a cargo imported from Amsterdam or Rotterdam, how were they to distinguish between Muscovado sugar of Porto Rico or from Trinidad? And as to a certificate of origin, how could they rely on such a certificate, when the sugar had been landed at other ports and reshipped to this country? They could not agree to the Motion unless they were prepared to undo all they had done. It was unnecessary for him to refer to the inconsistency they would commit by agreeing to this Motion, while they supplied Brazil and Cuba with goods and shipping for the conveyance of their produce; and he would also remind them that the chief number of slaves occupied in Brazil was in the coffee plantations. He need not refer to the incongruity they would commit by attempting to carry out the proposition of the hon. Baronet; but he denied the possibility of their extending protection for any lengthened time to our own colonies. What would their condition be now if they had kept up the monopoly, and by so doing had kept down the consumption? They would have had a surplus of British grown sugar, which must have found a market on the continent of Europe. They would have been thrown at once into open competition with the sugar of the whole world, and the consumption would not therefore have gradually risen as it had done. They were told that Trinidad, British Guiana, and Mauritius were capable of growing sugar for the entire consumption of this country. In the East Indies the quantity of palm trees, which were cultivated for the manufacture of sugar, was rapidly increasing, although the actual quantity yet exported from those countries was not very large in proportion to their entire production. Such was their power of production in their colonial empire, that he was quite sure that long before the period when the duties would be equalised, according to the Act of 1846—that is, before 1854—they would find themselves in the same position with regard to sugar as they now were in with regard to coffee—the protection would have worn itself out. Protection now would give an injurious impulse to the production of sugar, and thereby such a supply would be raised as would suddenly throw them down to the level of the markets of Europe, and they would thus suddenly come into competition with the slave-grown produce of the world. They only now wanted 10 per cent more production in our own possessions to raise their quantity so as to be equal to our entire consumption; and from the increase in Mauritius and the East Indies, in Singapore and Manilla, in a few years production would be encouraged to such an extent that they must very soon have a surplus. He begged to call the attention of his hon. Friend, and those who acted with him, to the effect of this resolution, if adopted, on the slave-growing countries in the world. Would it not be a proclamation to the world of the failure of their own experiment? Would it be holding out to them the slightest inducement to abolish slavery? Would they not be telling them that, with the largest market in the world, and though they were the greatest commercial country, they were unable to make free labour successful for their objects, and were obliged at this late period in the day to retrace their steps, and go back to protection to secure the interests of their own colonies? But let it be remembered that under no possible circumstances can Cuba and Brazil obtain any such protection; and we should therefore practically be telling those countries that the only condition on which they could safely abolish slavery is one of which they cannot avail themselves. He thought, therefore, on every account, they were justified in opposing the Motion, and he trusted the House would support the Government in refusing it. MR. STANLEY: Sir, I have more than one reason for soliciting the indulgence of the House. I have never addressed you before. I shall not now address you long. I have been personally alluded to in the course of this debate; I have, also, some personal acquaintance with the countries whose condition we are discussing; and, further, I may say, that I have not in my hands one single statistical table; that I shall quote no figures, detain you with no calculations; that I shall content myself with a reply to the speeches of hon. Gentlemen who have preceded me in debate, and that to them I shall reply as briefly as I can. Sir, before I enter upon the details of this question, I must be permitted to express the astonishment which I felt—I believe, in common with many Members of this House—when the hon. Gentleman who immediately preceded me told us that it was something strange, that considering that this subject had been fully discussed within these walls only two years ago, and that the opinion of the House had on that occasion been decidedly expressed, we should now think of bringing forward again a Motion similar to that which was then rejected, and of asking this House to reverse its former decision. I listened to that opinion, not exactly with conviction, but still with profound respect. It did, indeed, cross ray mind, that at a period certainly not within my Parliamentary experience, but still at a period not very remote, it was the habitual practice of that party of whose financial policy the hon. Gentleman has shown himself so warm a supporter, year after year, and Session after Session, to ask the House to reverse its decisions; to bring forward Motions which were not carried—I believe I may say which were not brought forward with any intention of being carried—which were not brought forward with any view to the effect which they might produce in the House, but which were intended to produce, as they actually did produce, their effect elsewhere. I admit. Sir, that this makes no difference as far as we are concerned, although it does make a difference in the right of the hon. Member to become our assailant: but I was somewhat surprised to hear the hon. Gentleman, not ten minutes after that expression of opinion to which I have referred, assert, that in consequence of certain facts which he stated, of certain changes which had taken place in the financial policy of the country, the whole features of the case were altered. If so, are we not, by the hon. Gentleman's own admission, justified in opening the question afresh? And, further, although I was not a Member of the House when the subject was discussed in 1848, still I have some recollection of the debate which took place on that occasion; and unless my memory very greatly deceives me, the overwhelming majority against which we are now told that it is hopeless to struggle, was, in a House then numbering between 400 and 500 Members present, a majority of just fifteen. Sir, I may also be allowed to offer one remark upon the reply which the hon. Gentleman opposite has made to the arguments of the hon. Baronet who brought forward the Motion. As I understand it, the Motion is founded mainly—I do not say exclusively—upon the admitted existence of distress in the West Indian colonies; and the hon. Gentleman replies by a careful and elaborate calculation, showing that the imports of sugar have increased, not from the West Indian colonies, but from the East Indies and the Mauritius. Sir, although this debate has now lasted for some time, I find myself the first Member who has risen from this side of the House; and, speaking in reference to an observation which fell from the hon. Baronet, and which was repeated by the hon. Member who immediately followed him, I wish distinctly and emphatically to corroborate the statement made by them, and to say that this is not a protection question, nor do we desire to deal with it as such. In taking this view of the case, I find that I am supported by many high authorities—by the authority of Mr. Deacon Hume, whom hon. Gentlemen opposite term the father of free trade; by the authority of the Bishop of Oxford—by the authority of Lord Brougham, both of whom were at the same time active in opposition to the Bill for the repeal of the sugar duties, and in support of that which took away agricultural protection; and in this House I am supported by the authority of the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth, who, although his vote was given in favour of the Act of 184G, did yet, unless I am greatly mistaken, express an opinion that the case of sugar was an exceptional one, and ought not to be placed in the general category of free trade. Sir, as regards the West India colonies, the case appears simple. One of two alternatives the House must adopt—one of two propositions the House must affirm—either it mast be said that free labour can compete with slave labour in an open market, or else it must be acknowledged that emancipation has failed; that the abolition of slavery was useless; that the 20,000,000l. given directly to further that object, and the 80,000,000l. more which for the same purpose were indirectly sacrificed, have been as utterly wasted as if they had been thrown into the sea. I know that it has been confidently asserted by some hon. Gentlemen, that free labour can compete with slave labour. The question is a difficult one to argue on general grounds; but I may refer to a very considerable authority on this subject—to the authority of Colonel Reid, the Lieutenant-Governor of Barbadoes. In a despatch, bearing date May, 1848, Colonel Reid writes as follows:— On the future prospects of the planter I shall say but little, since this subject has been publicly inquired into in England. I shall confine myself to recording the opinion I already gave in general terms on the 26th February, 1848, supported by the information which I have collected and transmitted, that the cost of making sugar from free labour is greatly beyond the cost of making it by slave labour—that sugar cultivation cannot yet withstand competition on equal terms with slave-labour, and that freedom requires to be nursed with protection. Hon. Gentlemen will recollect from what part of the world this despatch was sent. It was written from Barbadoes: from the one island in all the British colonies where the experiments of free labour can be most fairly tried, and with the best prospect of a favourable result. The soil of Barbadoes is fertile, the climate good, agricultural wages range from 6d. to 8d. per day, there is no waste land, the whole area of the island is cultivated, "squatting" is therefore impossible, and the negro has no alternative but to work as a labourer on the estates, if he wishes to earn a subsistence. Add to this that the native, from local attachment, is very unwilling to emigrate; and this, although the population is far denser than that of Ireland, and has been considered as dense as that of China. Is it possible that free labour should have a fairer trial? Yet tried it has been, and the result is attested by the despatch which I have read. And if such be the case in Barbadoes, what will it be in Jamaica, in Trinidad, in British Guiana? Take the case of the last named colony. Guiana, according to Sir Robert Schomburch, can support a population of 50,000,000 inhabitants. The area of cultivable land falls little short of 100,000 square miles. There is no more fertile soil in the world: communication is supplied to every part of the colony by means of navigable rivers; and, nevertheless, the actual population of Guiana docs not exceed 70,000, or rather more than half that of Barbadoes. It is evident then that the number of the labouring class in Guiana is disproportionately small: and of those labourers there are not many from whom the proprietors can obtain any work; for not to speak of the facility with which subsistence can be procured without labour of any kind, and the known unwillingness of the negro to work in a tropical climate, even in the case of those who are industriously inclined, it is a hundred chances to one that they do not look for employment on the sugar estates. Land is cheap, they can buy on easy terms; still more easily they can obtain a farm on lease, and if disinclined to incur even this expenditure, they have only to ascend any one of the rivers, to a distance of 100 or 200 miles, and to settle in the backwoods wherever they please. Hon. Gentlemen have said that immigration will remedy these evils; and doubtless, by that means, a supply of labour may be obtained unlimited in point of amount: but how can it compete in cheapness with that of the slave? To affirm this, is to affirm that the condition of the emigrant is not better than that of the slave; a state of things which, I cannot imagine that the Government of this country should consider desirable, and which, whether they do so consider it or not, is very far from being actually the case. Where is the immigration to come from? The supply of African labourers is very small, consisting only of liberated Africans; and small as it is, it is far too uncertain to be relied upon. You are, therefore, driven to have recourse to Coolie labour: these Coolies are to be brought from the East Indies, a distance of 15,000 miles—they are to be brought half across the globe—and by the existing law, one which I do not complain of, the planter introducing these labourers is hound at the expiration of their term to give them a free passage back again—I need hardly say, at a very considerable expense; nor is this all. In the interval, the planter provides them with food and lodging—all that is received by a slave—and into the bargain he has to pay them their wages in money: while, receiving the advantages of a merely temporary contract, he is bound to make the same provision for their maintenance and support which the labour proprietor makes for the slave, who is his permanent property. How, then, can any competition exist between the two? Is the African squadron, by checking the slave trade, and thus diminishing the supply while it increases the price of Cuban labour, to establish an equality? Surely it is not difficult to prove—we have had proof, indeed, in the course of this very Session—that the African squadron has not answered its purpose. I cannot believe that any armed force in the power of any Government to employ, will succeed in putting down the traffic, when one successful trip is sufficient to cover the losses incurred by five failures. We have had in our own times one signal and memorable proof of the in efficacy of any such attempt. For years Napoleon Buonaparte endeavoured to blockade the continent of Europe; and on all hands it has been admitted—history proves it; it was acknowledged even by the author of that system himself, that the continental blockade had failed. Sir, I cannot believe either that the African slave trade is less remunerative than the commerce then carried on with the Continent, or that the African squadron is a more efficient force than were all the armies of imperial France. A few words more, and I shall sit down. It is not as a set form of speech—it is in no rhetorical phrase—it is in simple and sober earnest that I would ask of this House, clearly to set before their eyes and well to consider what it is that they are doing to-night. I know something of the opinions of the transatlantic colonists; and I tell you now, that throughout the wide range of that colonial empire, with all its diversity of climates, countries, races—from Canada to Jamaica, from the St. Laurence to the Essequito, there exists in the minds of thinking men but one all-pervading and predominant feeling: a feeling—call it unreasonable if you will, but in a high-spirited, a dependent, and on both accounts a sensitive people, you cannot call it unnatural—of distrust in the policy and disbelief in the attachment of the mother country: and with that feeling a growing conviction—whether just or unjust, well or ill founded, I will not say, that their claims will always be neglected, and their interests sacrificed, for any real or imaginary necessity of party policy at home. And hare not the West Indians good cause for such belief? Look back to their early history—it was England that made Jamaica a penal colony; England, which against their will forced slavery upon them, and in opposition to their repeated petitions, compelled them to carry on the slave trade; against their will England abolished that traffic. [Cries of "Oh!"] I am not saying that she was not justified in so doing; I do not mean to complain of her policy in that particular instance; I am merely pointing out its general inconsistency, and the injustice of visiting upon the colonists the faults of the mother country; and, lastly, in that crowning stroke of all, in the Emancipation Act of 1833, when slavery was put down altogether, she granted, as compensation, a sum which, though high for her to give, was yet nothing for them to receive. Let the House consider for a moment how the case stands. It was distinctly stated by the Government which passed the Emancipation Act, that the planter should be compensated in full. I say "compensated in full," because it is impossible to suppose that the principle of compensation once granted, it should be merely compensation by halves. There were many persons at that time in the country, and some in the House, who thought that the colonists, having at no time been justified, even under the sanction of the law, in holding slaves, ought to be deprived of them without any compensation whatever. That view of the case was distinctly put forward, and as distinctly rejected; it was decided that the planters were to be compensated, and, as a matter of course, it followed that they were to be compensated in full. Now, what was actually done? Commissioners were sent out to value the slave property of the West Indies. They returned its value at 43,000,000l. Of this sum, 17,000,000l. alone were paid down; and for all that enormous amount of fixed property—buildings, improvements of estates, machinery, and other articles in their very nature irremoveable, the aggregate value of which was reckoned at 80,000,000l, and which fell to little more than half that value immediately after the passing of the Act—for the loss on these investments no compensation whatever was given. Does it not follow that some further compensation was owing, and that such compensation could only be given in the shape of a protective duty? Sir, I have no wish to argue this as a colonial question. I do not dispute the power, I do not deny the right, of Parliament to ruin our colonies by the course of commercial policy which they are pursuing; but one thing we have a right to expect, that for the sake of this House—for the sake of the country—for the sake of the honour and consistency of the Legislature—there be no half measures taken—no indirect or underhand mode adopted to accomplish the object which you have in view. Do at once—do openly—do avowedly—do in the face of the world, what you are not ashamed to do at all. Call the slave trade, as it was once called in this House, a humane and profitable traffic. Designate slavery, as some politicians in the Southern States of the American Union designate it now, as a "glorious institution handed down from our fathers." Apologise to Cuba—apologise to Brazil—for the wanton and unmeaning injuries which your squadron has inflicted upon their commerce. Assure them that, with their harmless and laudable pursuits, with that enterprising traffic which they carry on with the African coast, you never will attempt to interfere again. Do all this; but do not mock, with any professions of sympathy, those whom your policy tends to ruin; do not affect a philanthropy which every act of yours goes to disprove; do not stand forward at one and the same time as the supporters of liberal institutions at home, and abroad as the enemies of negro freedom.


said, that he had listened with great attention and pleasure to the very eloquent speech just delivered by the hon. Member, but so differed with him in the view which he took upon the subject, that it was his intention to vote against the Motion of the hon. Baronet the Member for South Essex. The regulation and settlement of the sugar duties were forced upon the present Government on their entrance into office under circumstances of pressing and extraordinary difficulty. It was impossible to refuse to apply to sugar the commercial policy which we had adopted; we were importing other slave-labour productions, and it was thought that our engagements with Spain took it out of our power, after the Act of 1845, to keep out slave-grown sugar. The only question was, under what circumstances the foreign sugar of all the world should be admitted into competition with British plantation sugar. He always was of opinion that no settlement of the sugar duties could be satisfactory which did not comprise a due consideration of the unfortunate circumstances of the West Indies, and some rational mode of dealing with the suppression of the slave trade. We bad philanthropists who were for maintaining a squadron, which stimulated the slave trade by the spirit of gambling it induced; who were content to have large commercial transactions with the southern States of America, but who expressed great indignation at our intercourse with other slaveholding States. This kind of geographical humanity was difficult to understand. It would not do to draw fine distinctions between sugar and tobacco and cotton; we must not have two standards of right and wrong, or indulge a favourite sin. It was not proposed that we should set about excluding all the productions of slave labour; yet, if it was wrong to deal in them, the principle applied to all—to the copper of Cuba, the gold of Brazil, and to the rest. But even slave-grown sugar was not proposed to be excluded entirely; it was thought there would be no harm in taking a little of it under a high duty. It was said the sugar trade stimulated the slave trade; but so did the copper trade; and did not the cotton trade stimulate slavery? Dr. Lushington, before the Committee, said that the demand for sugar was growing to a height at which no squadron in the world could keep down the slave trade. And Mr. Burke, with his usual wisdom, foresaw that the slave trade could only be put down in the country that imported slaves. But that was the only course we seemed determined not to adopt; we would do nothing but what was to be done by violence and coercion. The hon. Gentleman opposite said, this was not a protection question; but it was to be feared it was so regarded by a very large number of those who would support the Motion. No doubt the treatment which the West Indies had received from this country was such as they had just reason to complain of; when one considered all that had passed since 1832, one might think one's self to be reading of some of the worst acts of the most irresponsible governments in the world. These colonies had a right to every consideration, if not to direct compensation. To one thing, however, he could not agree; he could not agree to abandon a great national policy, which he believed to be most beneficial and of the utmost value to every portion of the empire; a policy established by years of conflict and of labour, and by some of the most serious personal sacrifices ever made by public men.


said, he approached the subject with undiminished sympathy for the sufferings inflicted on our colonies, and with undiminished indignation at the extent of the discredit which, in his opinion, had been thrown upon the national character by the policy which had been pursued for the last few years towards the West India colonies. He wished to give his most decided and cordial support to the Motion before the House. He agreed with what had fallen from the hon. Member for Lynn, who had addressed the House with so much ability, in the opinion that this was not a party question; and he would say that if the Motion were not carried, it would be entirely the result of that unhappy state of parties in the House to which their legislation had for so long a period been sacrificed. If the Motion of the hon. Baronet were carried, he should feel it his duty to move for a Committee of the whole House to take into consideration the Sugar Duties Act of 1848. The Motion, as it at present stood, came before the House in an incomplete shape; it was merely an abstract resolution, declaring it unjust and impolitic to expose the sugar of our own colonies to unrestricted competition with the sugar of slave-trading countries, and did not state in what manner that competition was to be prevented from being carried on. In the Amendment which he had intended to bring forward, he had adverted to the distinction made by his right hon. Friend the Member for Tamworth between foreign free-grown and foreign slave-grown sugar. But Her Majesty's present Government, when out of power, had pledged themselves so strongly to their view of the effects of the "favoured nation" clause, that they were obliged to adopt it when they assumed the reins of office. They could not get rid of the difficulty which their previous course, while in opposition, had occasioned; and another difficulty was presented by the repeal of the navigation laws. Moreover, they had failed to enforce the treaties entered into with Spain and Brazil for the purpose of putting down the slave trade. Under existing circumstances, therefore, it was impossible to maintain the distinction between foreign free-grown and foreign slave-grown sugar; but he should propose that the protective duties should be arrested in the descending scale for a certain number of years, and that at all events the differential duty between colonial and foreign sugar should not descend lower than at present. He could not look, without the greatest dread, to the equalisation of the sugar duties in 1854. The hon. Member for Westbury had asked whether we would hold out to the world an example by altering our policy? In reply he would ask the hon. Member how often our policy on the sugar duties had been altered? He would ask the House to call to mind the alteration which was made in 1848, in reference to the disastrous Act of 1846. The Government found it impossible to adhere to that Act, and they made an alteration, under which our colonies were enjoying 3s. 6d. more protection than they did under the Act of 1846, and by which the equalisation of the duties was not to take place till 1854, instead of next year, and at 10s. instead of 14s. He believed that, before 1854 arrived. Her Majesty's Government would find the pressure of distress so great in our colonies that they must make other alterations. He hoped he should be able to show the House that there was no foundation for the flattering picture which the hon. Member for Westbury had drawn of the condition of our colonies, and that though the hon. Member had been able to satisfy the House that the importation of sugar had not fallen off in point of quantity, our sugar-producing colonies were still in a most distressed state. He should not permit the hon. Member, by his references to our trade with the East Indies and Mauritius, and still less by his references to Ceylon coffee, to draw him away from the real question in debate—namely, whether it was possible for the West India capitalist to compete with slave labour in the production of sugar. In the East Indies a great deal of sugar was grown for consumption in that country, and the surplus would always find its way to England; but, in the first place, it must be borne in mind that it had found its way there under the protection of the Act of 1848; and, secondly, that the importation of sugar was being-carried on at a loss of several pounds per ton. With regard to Mauritius, the state of that country was peculiar. They all remembered the lamentable failures which took place in 1847, and the large capital which had been embarked there; and it must be remembered also that they had from the East Indies a large supply of Coolie labour, and that production had been further stimulated by the Act of 1848. He believed that in this manner the increased importation might be easily accounted for. But these were not the points on which he wished to dwell, which was the state of the West India colonies. He admitted that since 1848 a very considerable fall in wages had taken place there, varying from 30 to 50 per cent. In Trinidad the reduction was 40 per cent, and in Jamaica, 30 per cent. He admitted also that the present Government had removed some of the vexatious restrictions upon the importation of labour; and he gave the noble Earl the Secretary for the Colonies the credit of endeavouring at last to make some alteration in the labour laws. He admitted also that importation had increased, but it had been attended with considerable loss. In the last three months the foreign sugar entered for home consumption was 185,000 cwts. instead of 90,000 cwt. for the corresponding period of last year; while the British colonial sugar entered for the same period had been only 19,800 cwts. as compared with 22,900 cwts. in the corresponding period of last year. Whatever satisfaction, therefore, the hon. Member might have derived from the increased importation of colonial sugar, must fail him entirely at the present moment. There was another point to which the hon. Member for Westbury did not advert, but which lay at the very root of the question, and that was the price at which colonial sugar was sold. In 1846 the price of Muscovado sugar without the duty was, according to the Gazette average, 34s. 5d.; in 1847 it sank to 28s. 3d.; in 1848 to 23s. 8d.; in 1849 it rose to 25s. 4d., and taking the average of the last eight weeks it was 24s. 1½d. The evidence furnished by Lord Harris's despatches showed that, although the importation of colonial sugar was large, neither the profits nor the prosperity of the colonists increased. According to his statement, though there had been an increase of the crop in Trinidad, yet, from 1838 to 1848, the loss to the British capitalists had been a million sterling. Again, in the spring of 1849, Lord Harris stated that the value of the exports had suffered a very great reduction. Mr. Barkly, speaking of British Guiana, held the same language. The hon. Member for Westbury had adverted to the comparative increase in the quantity of rum, but he had made no mention of the fall in the price. In 1848 rum was at from 3s. 2d. to 3s. 6d. per gallon, while now it was at from 2s. 3d. to 2s. 8d.—a fall of very little less than one-third of the price of one of the most important items in a sugar estate. The hon. Member for Westbury had referred to the large importations of sugar from the West Indies as a proof of their prosperity, and seemed to deny that any material increase had taken place in the importation of slave-grown sugar.


had spoken of the quantity of slave-grown sugar taken for home consumption with free-labour sugar. He had never alluded to the quantity imported, because it was often imported for the purpose of being re-exported to the Continent.


felt that this was a point, nevertheless, which required their attention. In 1831 the West Indian colonies exported 205,000 tons of sugar; in 1848 the quantity had diminished to 139,000 tons; and in 1849 the produce was 142,000 tons. The hon. Member for Westbury estimated the crop for 1850 at 135,000 tons; but he (Sir J. Pakington) did not believe that it would exceed 112,000 tons. On the other hand, he found that in Cuba the average crop, up to 1845, amounted to 84,000 tons, while in the four years from 1846 to 1849, the exports had risen up to 176,000 tons. The exports from Brazil, in the four years from 1842 to 1845 had been, on the average, 69,720 tons; but in the four years from 1846 to 1849 the figures were reversed, and the exports amounted to 96,000 tons. He would now call the attention of the House to the condition in which the West India colonies now were. In an able pamphlet, published within the last few days, his hon. Friend behind him, the Member for Lynn, spoke thus of British Guiana:—" I was prepared for desolation, but not for what I saw. The whole land was strewn with ruins of houses and mills, and those not old, but now buildings." This was the account which his hon. Friend gave of the state of things in existence only the other day in British Guiana; and Governor Barkly, writing at a date a little antecedent, said the same thing. The hon. Member for Lynn, in the pamphlet before referred to, mentioned ten estates which were sold in British Guiana at different periods between 1835 and 1844. The aggregate value was 155,000l., but they had been again brought to the hammer within the last three years, since the Sugar Act of 1846 had been brought into operation, and the amount which they fetched was 17,000l. His hon. Friend said also that in passing through the parish of St. Ann's, in Jamaica, an estate of 800 acres, free from incumbrances, which was said to be in the market for 60l., became the subject of conversation. His hon. Friend observed, that though he was prepared to believe much, yet this was beyond his credulity, and it was not till some weeks afterwards, when a friend of his told him that he had actually bought the estate for the sum mentioned, that he could be induced to look upon it as anything more than a fiction. He would now advert to the dreadful effect produced on the Creole population in the West India colonies. If Government persevered in their present policy every hope would fail of improving their religious condition, and they must again relapse into a state of barbarism. The right hon. Gentleman opposite, the Secretary at War, lately presided at a meeting of the Wesleyan Missionary Society, at which a report was read, of which he presumed the right hon. Gentleman approved, as he would not allow an Amendment to it to be put. That report stated expressly, that a very deteriorating effect had been produced upon the religious character of the coloured population by the distress to which the colonists had been reduced; and Earl Grey himself, in an answer to a despatch from Governor Barkly, admitted that it was melancholy to find that the negroes had rather retrograded than improved, and that they were as a body less amenable than formerly to the restraints of religion and law, and were as much subject as ever to the degrading superstitions which their fathers had brought with them from Africa. He now begged to call the attention of the noble Lord at the head of the Government to the opinion of Dr. Lushington on the Act of 1846, namely, that it must have the effect of largely stimulating the slave trade, by increasing the consumption of slave-grown sugar. He would next refer to the opinion of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the University of Oxford. In the debate which took place upon the subject of withdrawing the African squadron, the right hon. Gentleman said, that if we wished to maintain a character for sincerity in our desire to put down the slave trade with foreign nations, we should never have passed the Sugar Bill of 1846. The last authority to which he would refer would be that of the noble Lord himself. He would beg to remind the noble Lord of the language he had used in the debate upon the keeping up of the African squadron. He had then distinctly admitted, that by the Sugar Bill of 1846 we had placed the colonies at a great disadvantage, and by that Act a very great blow had been inflicted upon them. But by whom had the blow been inflicted? Why, by the Government of which the noble Lord was the head. He (Sir J. Pakington) had never given a vote with less hesitation than when upon that night he voted with the noble Lord. But at the same time he must say, that he had heard with sorrow and surprise, the appeal to the Almighty which the noble Lord had made upon that occasion, considering that it had come from the lips of the Minister who had done more than any living man to stimulate the slave trade. ["Oh, oh!"] It was a grave charge to make, but it was one which he made with no feeling of personal disrespect. He was sorry to be obliged to speak so; but the noble Lord being at the head of the Government which had passed the Act of 1846, and he having again and again defended that Act, and being again ready, as they had every reason to believe, to defend and support it again that night—he (Sir J. Pakington) said, that he was justified in saying that the noble Lord had done more than any living man to stimulate the slave trade. If they sincerely wished to put down the slave trade, they should carry out their policy with singleness and steadiness of purpose, with sincerity and honesty, or they could not expect any blessing to attend it. They could not expect the blessing of Heaven to attend the policy of this country so long as with one hand they lavished their money in keeping up the appearance of a squadron on the coast of Africa, whilst with the other they were inviting, and giving every encouragement to the practice of slavery. They could not expect any such blessing whilst with one hand they drew the sword to put an end to slavery, and with the other did everything to encourage it. That policy must be reversed, and he hoped some day to see this country acting in a manner which should not involve suspicion of its honour—in a manner which would not involve suspicion of its sincerity—in a manner which would exhibit this nation to the world as one not guided merely by motives of gain, which would show to the world that we could not be led solely by pecuniary considerations, but that we were determined, at any cost, to put an end to slavery and the slave trade.


said, he was not surprised that the hon. Baronet who had just resumed his seat, commenced the observations which he addressed to the House by avowing that he should support the Motion, though it fell far short of the principles which he laid down; and though the views of his hon. Friend who had brought the Motion before the House were as different from the views of the hon. Baronet as it was possible to conceive. No man who knew his hon. Friend doubted his assurance that he brought forward no party Motion, and that he was influenced only by the great principle of discouraging in every possible way the slave trade and slavery. But the Motion of his hon. Friend came far short of the principle which he had avowed. His hon. Friend had now reduced his Motion to express an opinion that colonial sugar should not be exposed to unrestricted competition with that produced in foreign slave-trading countries. Where the principle was to be found that enabled his hon. Friend to draw the distinction between those slaves brought across the Atlantic, and those brought from Virginia to Carolina, and worked in sugar plantations there, he was at a loss to know. His hon. Friend did not profess to deal with sugar produced by slave labour in those countries which were not slave trading. His hon. Friend said, he who bought slave-grown sugar was as guilty as he who bought the slave. Then was not he who bought slave-grown coffee as guilty as he who bought slave-grown sugar? And where the hon. Member for Droitwich drew the distinction between slave-grown sugar and slave-grown coffee, passed his (the Chancellor of the Exchequer's) comprehension. He was afraid that his hon. Friend must feel that, upon his own principles, he, too, was as guilty as those whom he so strongly condemned. But the principles on which the hon. Member for Droitwich had supported the Motion of his (the Chancellor of the Exchequer's) hon. Friend, were totally at variance with those his hon. Friend himself had laid down. What his hon. Friend had laid down was to exclude the sugar of Cuba and Brazil. And he should have been prepared to argue as bad been argued before, and, indeed, had been alluded to that day, that by the admission of free-labour sugar from the continental market, they just as certainly, though not as directly, encouraged the production of slave-grown sugar, as if they admitted it into this country direct. But his hon. Friend opposite had saved him the trouble of arguing this question, for he threw over that distinction altogether. The hon. Member for Droitwich had a charge against the present Government that they had hampered themselves by a declaration, when in opposition, that it was impossible to maintain the distinction. The hon. Member also said, it was impossible to make the distinction, and he proposed, therefore, to put all foreign sugar on the same footing. But what said his hon. Friend the Member for South Essex? He said that the object of his Motion was not to impose any differential duty on foreign free-labour sugar. And the Anti-Slavery Society would admit to the market of this country foreign free-labour sugar, as was stated by their circular of that morning. The whole ground on which the Motion was brought forward by the Member for South Essex, was entirely thrown over by the hon. Gentlemen opposite who supported it. And on what ground did the hon. Gentleman support it? Why, the hon. Member for Lynn, who addressed the House with so much ability to-night, said it was entirely a question of protection. But on what ground was that protection to be given to East India sugar? East India sugar had no claim to protection from the abolition of slavery. Did the hon. Gentleman intend to extend protection to the East Indies or to Mauritius? or did he propose to give it to the West Indies alone? The hon. Gentleman, in the way in which he had put the question, had entirely confounded and confused the whole argument on which the Motion rested; he threw over the argument on which the Motion was brought forward by his hon. Friend behind him, and he left no ground to stand upon except that of protection to colonial sugar against all foreign sugar. The hon. Gentleman the Member for West Gloucestershire would go further than either; he would exclude all slave-grown produce of whatever kind. The object, therefore, of the hon. Gentleman and of those who were about to vote with him was, after all, protection; to raise the price of colonial sugar to the consumer in this country. That he was not prepared to do himself; and he hoped that House was not prepared to do it. His hon. Friend the Member for Westbury had stated the benefits which the consumer in this country had derived from the increased quantity of sugar imported here within the last few years; and he begged to repeat part of the statement which his hon. Friend had made. The consequence of the alteration in the law had been a largely increased entry of sugar for home consumption within the last two years. For fifteen years before the year 1844, the consumption of sugar had been under an average of 200,000 tons per annum. In the year 1844, it was 206,000. In 1848 and 1849 it had increased by 50 per cent. It amounted in each of those years to 300,000 tons. And how had the benefit of that consumption been procured for the people? Why by the reduction in the price. And if they were to raise the price, they would deprive the consumer of all the benefit which legislation had of late years conferred upon him. But there was a still further objection to the plan of the hon. Gentleman opposite. By restoring protection generally, they would injure the consumer without succeeding in discouraging the slave trade. In 1840 the price of sugar was very high. It would, therefore, not be fair to take that year as the foundation of any argument. But he would just state that the consumption of sugar per head of the population of this country amounted in 1840 to about 15 lbs. The average for the next four years was 17 lbs. per head per annum. In 1845 it was 20lbs. In 1846, 21 lbs.; in 1847, 23 lbs.; in 1848 and 1849, upwards of 24 lbs. Now, the increased consumption was surely a great benefit to the people of the country; and whilst the checking of it would greatly injure the people, it would not do much to discourage the slave trade. He presumed that no one would for a moment doubt that this increased consumption was a great benefit to the people of this country—that it was a great advantage to them to be enabled to raise their consumption of sugar from 15lb. to 24 lb. But the question beyond this was one of great importance. Let hon. Members look to the effect of this change upon the West Indies themselves. He agreed with his hon. Friend the Member for Westbury in thinking that a more unfortunate measure for them could not be adopted. He was sorry to be obliged to say that there was very considerable distress existing in those colonies. He was sorry that distress should prevail to such an extent in some of them. No one could sympathise more than he did with them, and no one would be more anxious than he to give them relief; but having submitted to the Act of 1848, and having acted upon it as a final settlement of the question, he should say that those colonies had exerted themselves to a degree of which many did not think them capable. He should briefly allude again to the statements made regarding them by his hon. Friend the Member for Westbury. His hon. Friend had stated that which was a proved fact—that the produce of all the British colonies in the East Indies, Mauritius, and the West Indies, had been considerably increased in the course of the last two years. All the facts were before the House in the returns which were on the table. The hon. Member for Dartmouth had moved for returns, which were now before them, of the quantities of sugar imported from the colonies for a series of years; and, comparing 1848 with 1849, there appeared to have been a steady and manifest increase in the quantity imported from Antigua, Barbadoes, Jamaica, St. Vincent, and Trinidad. Taking the importation from the whole of the West India islands, it had increased from 2,794,000 cwt. in 1848, to 2,840,000 in 1849. But hon. Gentlemen seemed to say that there would be a falling off in the present year. What the year might turn out finally, it would be impossible to say; but he could state the returns from British Guiana (that colony which was said to be so utterly ruined) for the first quarter of the year 1849 was 7,920 hogsheads; while, in the corresponding period of 1850, it was 9,336 hogsheads, showing an increase of 1,416; and an increase not perhaps always precisely similar in amount, but pretty nearly so, might be found to have occurred in all our possessions where sugar was produced; yet the reverse of all this had been predicted: it had been predicted that Ceylon would be a desert, that Mauritius would be a waste—and yet those prophecies, so confidently made and so implicitly relied upon, had been falsified within the short space of two years. The hon. Member for Westbury, in his statement, certainly did not omit the West Indies, and in comparing periods of three years, gave statements, the result of which showed an increase of production and of exportation from 127,000 tons to 148,000 tons, the increase being in the three years subsequent to the Act of 1846, as compared with the three years preceding that measure. But, further to show the insufficient ground on which the Motion of the hon. Baronet rested, he should call the attention of hon. Members to the average importation of sugar from the West Indies during the five years ending 1844, and the five years ending 1849. The details were as follows:—Antigua, five years ending 1844, 177,727 cwt.; five years ending 1849, 180,737 cwt.; Barbadoes, ending 1844, 290,873 cwt.; ending 1849, 402,987 cwt.; Trinidad, ending 1844, 282,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 385,000 cwt.; St. Kitt's, ending 1844, 89,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 107,000 cwt.; St. Lucia, ending 1844, 55,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 70,000 cwt.; Guiana, ending 1844, 522,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 572,000 cwt.; Jamaica, ending 1844, 602,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 665,000cwt.; Mauritius, ending 1844, 591,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 907,000 cwt.; aggregate of all colonies, including the East Indies, five years ending 1844, 3,925,000 cwt.; ending 1849, 5,072,000 cwt. The next point to which he should solicit the attention of the House was the comparative operation of slavery and freedom—the productiveness of free labour as compared with slave labour, and he should take the six years ending in 1834 for the purpose of comparing them with the six years ending in 1849, the quantities being, in cwts.:—Antigua, 1834, 175,000; 1849, 188,000; increase, 12,000. Barbadoes, 1834, 343,000; 1849, 390,000; increase, 47,000. Trinidad, 1834, 310,000; 1849, 366,000; increase, 56,000. The question so often discussed in these debates, was, what might be done by means of free labour; and that question was one which he conceived those statements fully answered. It was scarcely necessary for him to go over the ground that his hon. Friend the Member for Westbury had already traversed; but as the House was now more full than when his hon. Friend addressed them, he would say it had been clearly shown by him that the consumption of colonial sugar had increased, while the consumption of foreign sugar had fallen off. He should now trouble the House with only a few more details, for the purpose of contrasting the effects of slavery with freedom, as shown in the consumption of colonial and foreign sugar during the last four years; and as the duties changed on the 5th of July in each year, he would take periods ending on that day in each year, estimating the consumption for the last two months of the year which would end on the 5th of July next, at the same rate as for the first ten months. The consumption of sugar then was as follows: In 1846–47, colonial, 227,000 tons; slave-grown, 61,000 tons; 1847–48, colonial, 242,000 tons; slave-grown, 39,000 tons; 1848–49, colonial, 251,000 tons; slave-grown, 48,000 tons; 1849–50, colonial, 282,000 tons; slave-grown, 36,000 tons. The average importation from the West Indies, 1844–5–6, was 127,000 tons; 1847–8–9, 148,000. Thus it would appear that during the operation of the Act of 1846—that Act which hon. Gentlemen opposite would have them believe checked the progress of West India improvement, and inflicted a most severe blow upon West India prosperity—that during the operation of that Act the quantity of colonial sugar imported into this country had increased from 227,000 tons to 282,000 tons, while that of foreign sugar had fallen from 61,000 tons to 36,000 tons. These facts appeared to him to be well worthy of the attention of the House; and his belief was, it would in the end, as had always been maintained by the opponents of the slave trade, be found that slave labour was inferior to free labour. He agreed with the hon. Member for Montrose, that protection would not save the West Indies, but increased cheapness of production would; and the duty of the Legislature was to afford the colonies every facility for augmenting the means of cheapness. Now, reference had been made to the Dutch colony of Surinam; and there, it was not unworthy of observation, the proprietors of sugar estates were beginning to think that free labour was more profitable and advantageous in all respects than that of slavery. Surinam was on the verge of our possessions, and appeared to be likely very soon to follow our example. They and others were about to discover that the way to cheapen sugar was to abolish slavery. The hon. Member for Lynn had quoted a passage from the despatch of the Lieutenant Governor of Barbadoes, to prove that in Barbadoes, where the trial of free labour was certainly made under the most favourable circumstances, cultivation by free labour had failed. If the hon. Member had read to the conclusion of the paragraph in the Governor's letter, he would have seen that the Governor's opinion did not warrant that assertion. He should take the liberty of reading a few additional words from that despatch, because, though the writer had been represented by the hon. Member as holding that free labour might fail, yet the following portion of the despatch would show that an exception was at any rate made in the case of Barbadoes:— How long that time should be, your Lordship will understand that I cannot say. If there be no protection, the cultivation of sugar will be given up further In Grenada, and it will dwindle in all the Windward Islands, excepting Barbadoes. With that passage in the hands of the hon. Member, how could he say that the experiment of free labour had failed in Barbadoes? He also held in his band another paper, as to another important colony—Trinidad—with a quotation from which he should trouble the House; it appeared in the Times, in the month of December last. It was in the following words:— Labour was abundant and cheap, and the Trinidadian says, that fieldwork was never so cheaply performed in the island as at the present day, not even when slavery was at its zenith. Such facts could not be got over, and they clearly proved that with a fair supply of free labour, production might be as cheap or cheaper than where slavery existed. At the same time, although the Government were not prepared to adopt the plan of buying slaves in Africa for the purpose of setting them free in the West Indies, they were prepared to grant any facilities short of that which was only another mode of carrying on the slave trade. The only means similar to that which had succeeded was, when the expense was incurred of importing liberated Africans. The Government had, in one way, afforded an addition to the free labour in many of our colonies. They had taken upon this country the expense of the conveyance of the liberated Africans, and during the last three years there had been a gradual increase in the number of liberated Africans imported into the West Indies. In 1847, the number was 1,097; in 1848, 3,148; in 1849, 4,762. It was also right the House should remember that at present there were not unsatisfactory accounts from many of the colonies. He was far from saying that distress did not prevail in the West Indian colonies; but in Trinidad he found, from a despatch of Lord Harris, dated February 29, 1850, that the revenue, the exports, and the imports had all increased during the last year. In Guiana, the import duties, which amounted to 23,191 dollars for January, 1846, were in January, 1847, 22,506; 1848, 27,685; and 1849, 46,195 dollars. His hon. Friend the Member for South Essex had brought forward his Motion with a view of discouraging the slave trade, and, in his hands, it had no reference to protection. But these were not the grounds upon which the Motion had been supported by hon. Gentlemen opposite, who had advocated protective duties against the admission of all foreign sugar whatever. But he hoped that the House would take into its consideration not only the supposed interest of the planter, but the real interest of the consumer at home. He did not believe that it was really for the interest of the West Indies that protection should be restored. Looking to what was going on in the West Indies, in the exertions which were being made, and successfully made, to cheapen the production in the colonies, and to adopt a better cultivation of the lands, he trusted that they would not, by acceding to this Motion, check the active spirit of enterprise that was going on, or induce the hope of a return to protection, which he firmly believed would be most prejudicial to those whom it professed to benefit, whilst no one could deny the injury which it must cause to the large consuming population of this country.


Sir, the hon. Gentleman the Member for South Essex, from motives for which his name, quite independently of his character, is a sufficient guarantee, has invited the House to resume the consideration of a question the difficulties of which increase with every step we take. In 1848, the last period at which this subject was opened up, we had before us the question—not whether we ought to maintain the settlement of 1846, because that settlement its authors proposed themselves to abandon—but whether we ought to introduce a fixed system of protection on the one hand, or adopt on the other a scale of duties which was proposed by the Government, and provided a progressive descent in the differential duties—at first indeed a very slight descent, and one of which the effect has, therefore, not been yet experienced, but a descent which after another year will become a rapid one, and from which, unless the House interfere, you may anticipate a continuance of the present pressure. In 1848, I, in common with sonic Gentlemen on this side of the House, did give a vote opposed to the proposition of the Government, for the purpose of extending a larger measure of protection to the West Indies; and to that vote on the present occasion, for reasons which I shall shortly explain, I find I shall be bound to adhere. The words of the Motion of the hon. Gentleman might afford me the means of escape, as the terms of the Motion place in the same category the whole of the British possessions. But it is perfectly plain that every extension or augmentation of protection—at all events to East India sugar and to Mauritius, where there is no artificial soar-city of labour—that every extension or augmentation must be considered in the principle of protection; and I am not prepared to advise any such increase or extension in their case. The case you really have is the case of the West Indies. And I freely and fully admit it is one of the broad difficulties of the question, that when we extend protection to the West Indies in consideration of peculiar circumstances of a temporary nature, we may be likely to extend it to other portions of the empire which can prefer no such claim. But the case of the West India Islands before the House is the same as it stood in 1848, only with the danger nearer, with the suffering aggravated, but with the grounds of justice the same, and with the grounds of policy, in my understanding, clearer and broader. Sir, we recollect the crisis through which the West Indies have passed, presenting a great industry and a great interest not suffering and complaining merely, but absolutely ground down and reduced to total ruin by the legislation of this House. You began with emancipation, which implied a great and vital alteration of West Indian society, and a change which, if it had been conducted with no more tenderness or wisdom than some of oar more recent changes, would at once have precipitated these colonies into ruin. The noble Lord, now in the other House of Parliament (Lord Stanley), then acting as the organ of Earl Grey's Government, by his energy and wisdom so adjusted the details of that measure, that while no man on this side of the water ascribed other than the proper motives, even the planters were convinced that the utmost had been done by him; and within the last few days and hours the public have had a double proof that the talent and disposition which then governed the proceedings of the noble Lord, and which made them successful, have descended on his son. It is true—and this must be a source of consolation to the philanthropists by whom the change was advocated—it is true that it is not the emancipation of the negro that has ruined the West Indies. For what occurred during the period succeeding emancipation, the philanthropists are not responsible, nor are they responsible for the ruin and disaster now at work. But what was done after emancipation? The Government of Lord Melbourne sent out the most precise directions to the West India colonies, commanding them to postpone to the latest moment the introduction of all that preparatory legislation known to be indispensably necessary, with respect to police and the internal organisation of the colonies during the apprenticeship. You desired and obliged the colonists to postpone every act of precaution. In 1837 a Committee of this House recognised the Emancipation Act as containing a solemn contract with respect to apprenticeship until 1840; and you saw it stated in the report of that Committee that nothing could be more disastrous and mischievous than to shake the public confidence with respect to that contract. Having so acted in 1837, in 1838, by your own proceedings, and by an injudicious and hasty vote of this House, you compelled the West India colonies to give up the remainder of that apprenticeship you had guaranteed; you not only deprived them of the pecuniary interest of two years of coerced labour, but, having postponed preparation, you obliged them to plunge unprepared into the new state forced on them. And what did you do also with regard to labour? I confess I cannot agree with the censure which the hon. Member for Montrose passed upon the present proceedings of Her Majesty's Government. I think the difficulties attending the wholesale importation of labour to the West Indies greater than he regards them, and I think the Government wishes to facilitate that introduction. But, Sir, what I should not attribute to the Government I do attribute to the state of public sentiment in this country. There was a time—but it is now gone by—when, by seizing upon the opportunity, you might have produced the most important consequences by introducing labour from abroad, when advantages would be conferred upon the planter and upon the negro; but you declined. You watched with such jealousy the proceedings of the West India interest, you watched with such jealousy every laudable enterprise for increasing their labour, and regarded with so much hostility their every act, that the Government did not dare to give any facilities for the introduction of labour; and even after taking every precaution, you were compelled by the state of the public law to lay down restrictions; and for the scarcity of artificial labour in the West Indies, you, and not the Government, are responsible. But then comes the Act of 1846. And here I deny and dispute, not the figures, but the inferences drawn from them by the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer. He quotes the three years since 1846 as an indication of the effects of the Act on the producing power of the West Indies. But does the right hon. Gentlemen believe his own argument? Has he so little studied the nature of the cultivation in the West Indies, as seriously to believe that the imports from the West Indies in 1847 are a fair measure of the effects of the Act passed in August, 1846? Was there no other fact that had produced the effect? Sir, there was the Act of 1845 as well as the Act of 1846. In 1845 you reduced the duty on colonial sugar from 25s, and 26s. to 14s. a cwt. That Act took no effect in 1846, for the cane had to be fourteen months in the ground. But in 1848 the Act of 1845 would have been in full operation, if you had not checked it; the check of the Act of 1846, however, did not operate in 1847, it operated a little in 1848, and it is now that the effects of the proceeding are apparent. Sir, in 1848, in a Committee of this House, certain resolutions were moved by a right hon. Gentleman a Member of the Government, whose absence from a deplorable cause I am sure has not called forth a mere formal regret, but has been the source of deep grief to Members of this House. The right hon. Gentleman the President of the Board of Trade moved a resolution to the effect that the guarantee of the Act of Emancipation had interfered with the continuous supply of labour to the sugar colonies; and therefore I say public sentiment is responsible for the scarcity of labour which we have seen; and you, the representatives of the country, should do what you can to remove the evils which the expression of that public sentiment has caused. Sir, no formal regard for consistency would make me repeat my vote of 1848, if I thought such a course would tend to check the growth of returning prosperity in these colonies. But, Sir, I do not think that protection can be a permanent cure for the evils we see in the West Indies. I remember an admission of my right hon. Friend the Member for Tam-worth, which carried weight with it at the time, that the case of the West Indies was fairly to be made an exception to the general category of free trade; but I do not think I am going far from the fact, when I say that if it can be shown that the permanent restoration of protection is the real cure for the West Indies, I should be prepared to give a vote in accordance with that view. But what would be the operation of protection, considered as a permanent instrument of relief? I would suppose you going to increase the rate of protecting duties. When that intelligence reaches the West Indies, it does not reach the planter alone, but it acts on the production. It acts likewise on the rate of wages as much as it does upon production. But I am prepared to vote now as in 1848, and say you should arrest the scale of the descending duties. You should offer inducements to the British capitalist to invest in the West Indies; you should let him have some fixity of state, and not hang over his head a perpetual change of differential duties, so that from year to year he does not know where he stands. You should, therefore, arrest the descending scale of duties, and enact that for a term of years there should be a fixed state of law with respect to these duties in the West Indies. Barbadoes and Antigua sent out on an average in the four years before emancipation 26,900 tons of sugar; in the last three years they sent 32,300 tons. Jamaica and British Guiana, in the years from 1831 to 1834, sent out, the first 67,000 tons, and the second 43,000 tons, making 110,000 tons. From 1847 to 1849, notwithstanding the great liberality of the Legislature in reducing the duty to 14s., the amount exported was 65,500 tons, instead of 110,000, showing a difference of 40 per cent on the whole. But, Sir, is this a planter's question alone, or is it a question affecting the whole negro population of the West India colonies? Those indications of decay in the entire population of the West Indies, to which my hon. Friend the Member for Lynn has alluded in a recent publication, are but too true, and are only too surely to be traced to our legislation. To show that the exports have fallen back far below the point at which they stood even in the years of slavery, I need only refer to a few figures. Four years before slavery was abolished, the exports from this country to the West Indian colonies amounted to 2,575,000l. In the four years of apprenticeship, from 1835 to 1838, the exports had risen to 3,450,000l. annually. From 1843 to 1846, when perfect freedom was established, the average exports had fallen back to 2,657,000l. In 1847, a year which they were so fond of quoting, the exports had fallen to 2,279,000l.; and in 1848, the last year for which we have the returns, your exports to the West India colonics have fallen back to the sum of one million and a half. I say that that most important, most significant, and most disastrous fact indicates to you, if you will but observe it, that there is a necessity for your considering further measures for the relief of the West Indies, and that you are in danger of losing, unless you enter into that consideration all the best and brightest proofs of the sacrifices you have already made. Now, what measures of permanent relief do I point to? In 1848 we were disposed to think that great things would be done in the way of extending the public resources to cheapening things in the West Indies. It is needless to refer to the numerous modes by which this might be attained. It might be attained in many places by the drainage of land; in many places by irrigation; in some places by the improvement of roads, in others by the promotion of railroads; and in British Guiana by the restoration of works for keeping out the encroachments of the sea, which the resources of the colony do not, I fear, enable them now to repair themselves. The whole of the colonies are dependent on these works in the highest degree; and they afford you an opportunity of interfering with the strong arm of the empire, and of giving out of your abundant means, with but little risk of loss, that assistance which is absolutely for their redemption. The principle laid down in the Committee was, that the Government were to take on themselves the responsibility of carrying out these things—that they were to look to the circumstances of the different colonies, and to make the grants of money directly and effectually available for the planters themselves. Now, instead of that, I believe nothing whatever has been done. The loans have not, I believe, been made, and the Government have not taken on themselves the responsibilities expected from them, but have gone to the colonial legislatures; and in the midst of the financial embarrassments in which they were, and these bodies being besides but badly suited to carry out the views of the colonists, the Government asked them to pledge the public credit of the colony before any loans would be made. The consequence was, that while we told the West Indies that we did not think protection a permanent mode of advancing their interests, we were willing to continue it for a time, until some other measures would be tried for their relief. We still stand in that position which we occupied two years ago, because these other measures have not yet been tried. This discrimination between the colonies was an essential principle on which I thought we were to proceed. I thought you had given a distinct pledge to the colonies that you were going to take that work in hand, but you have not done so. You have not encouraged or facilitated the colonies in taking the matter into their own control; and in the case of British Guiana, you have, according to the report of the Committee of this House, acted in the opposite spirit; for the report indicates that the influence of the Government at home has certainly not been used in the direction that it should be used in. With regard to the condition of the planters, I would beg the House to recollect that every increase of production is not a proof that their ruin has not been brought about. Where vast capital has been expended, and great extent of land brought into cultivation, the planter may be ruined; but new capitalists will come in under the expectation of getting the plantation at a nominal price, and thus give a fresh stimulus for a time to cultivation. I would refer to the testimony of Governor Light on this point. He gives an account of one of the finest estates in British Guiana; and though I do not remember his exact figures, I can state them near enough for our present purpose. He states that that estate had been sold for 80,000l. or 100,000l. in the time of slavery. During the period of apprenticeship it was sold for 30,000l. or 40,000l.; but the year before he wrote—I think in 1848—that property was disposed of to a new buyer for a sum of, I think, 2,000l. And Governor Light observes, in language not more quaint than full of instruction, that the purchaser, having acquired for 2,000l. all the buildings, works, and machinery on the estate, has what he terms "a noble chance of escaping ruin." Now, other persons similarly circumstanced throughout the other colonies may also have "a noble chance of escaping ruin;" but it should not be forgotten that they escape a ruin which their predecessors have the painful task of recollecting. But I do not appeal mainly on their behalf. I would ask you to give them such terms of fixed protection as would be necessary to afford them time for such remedial measures as may be introduced; but I would ask you still more strongly, on behalf of the labouring population, who are now losing that advance which they had made under happier auspices. Is it not painful, after all that has been done, and all the sacrifices that have been made, to find that they are gradually allowing to slip from their hands not only the means of commanding material comforts, but even the disposition to seek for them; and, still more, the disposition to cultivate the rational and spiritual part of their being by seeking after the benefits of religion and education? You may say that there is no connection between philanthropy and protective duties; but I assert that there is a connection between philanthropy and the creation in these persons of a desire to work for wages. I say that the rapid diminution of these figures which I have quoted, is a true picture of things; and, therefore, on their behalf, as well as on behalf of that ill-used class, the proprietors, I trust the House of Commons will be prepared to support the Motion of my hon. Friend the Member for South Essex. With regard to that Motion, I regret that my hon. Friend has not adhered to the distinction drawn by my right hon. Friend the Member for Tamworth, with regard to slave-grown sugar. That would be far more clear to me than a proposition for the mere continuance of a differential duty. For the maintenance of the principle to which I refer, I have been always prepared to contend; and I deeply lament that a great political crisis in this country forced many to sanction, by their reluctant votes, the course which has been taken, while they would have wished a different change, and one not so disastrous in its consequences or so injurious to the high character of Great Britain as that which was made in 1846. At the same time I admit the difficulty under which you now stand. Never had there been greater diligence shown in searching for cavils, or greater ingenuity in urging them forward, than by the party of the noble Lord on that occasion. But still I feel the difficulty arising from its being now almost impossible, in the complex nature of the case, to restore that distinction, now that it has been departed from. It is one thing to maintain a distinction, and another thing to introduce it after it has once disappeared from your laws. Neither can I forget that Her Majesty's Government always contended that they had no right to maintain that distinction under the doubtful stipulations of treaties. I do not ask for any proposition to carry into effect any change in the law contrary to the stipulations of treaties. We are shut up to the conclusion of my hon. Friend the Member for Droitwich, to which my hon. Friend opposite is, I believe, prepared to adhere, as well as I am myself, to extend to the British West Indies that protection which is now vanishing before their eyes for such time as may be necessary for the production of those useful public works that may lead to ultimate cheapness of production; while at the same time I ask you still more to adopt this course on behalf of that class for whom you have before made such sacrifices, and who are now fast sinking back to the degraded condition from which they were originally raised by your philanthropy and benevolence.


Sir, it has seldom fallen to my lot to witness a debate conducted on the one side with more curious inconsistencies and with a greater series of contradictions. My hon. Friend who introduced this Motion proposed it on the ground of humanity, and as a mode of getting rid of the slave trade; but scarcely had his arguments fallen on our ears when the debate took another turn, and from that time his Motion has been chiefly supported on the ground of protection—a principle which I believe my hon. Friend had not himself intended to advocate. Almost the only example of consistency which we have witnessed in the course of this debate, is that consistency of talent and ability which have been displayed by the hon. Member who has for the first time spoken on this question, and who has proved himself to be the consistent representative of that father whom we have so often heard with admiration within these walls. The right hon. Gentleman who has just sat down, has, I think, crowned the example of inconsistency in this debate. Whether the limited scope of my capacity or the ambiguous argument of the right hon. Gentleman be the cause, I am now quite at a loss to know what he means to do, and on what side he intends to vote. He declared himself, as I understood him, ready to support the Motion of my hon. Friend, that Motion being a permanent declaration that it is impolitic and unjust to expose the free-grown sugar of our colonies and possessions abroad to unrestricted competition with the sugar of foreign slave trading countries. But the right hon. Gentleman has not, as I understand him, as yet so entirely thrown off the principles of free trade, of which he was once an able advocate, and in support of which he has often rushed into the van at periods of great difficulty, and given his most honourable support—the right hon. Gentleman did not, as I understand him, abandon that doctrine, or accept the doctrine of protection. All he asks for is a limited period of protection, to give time for those remedial measures for the colonies for which he is anxious. But if that is his only object, if he does not wish for the permanent re-establishment of the principles of protection, then I ask on what principle of consistency can he vote for a resolution which is permanent in its object, and which does not give a limited but a permanent period for the continuance of protection to our colonies? I certainly shall not vote for the Motion of my hon. Friend. I am not either for limited or permanent protection. I am convinced that protection has done no good to the West Indies, and will do no good. Now, it was under a system of protection that the West Indies have been in former times in a state of continued distress and ruin; and it is not by recurring to that system that we can restore them to that prosperity which, I trust, they are all destined to attain. It is by those remedial measures which the right hon. Gentleman alluded to—by a better system of cultivation, and by that stimulus which competition affords, that we may hope to see them extricated from the difficulties under which they complain. Now, how my hon. Friend thinks that this exclusion of slave-grown sugar would put an end to the slave trade, I really cannot for a moment imagine. I cannot see how such a measure would operate in the way he wishes to put an end to that traffic. Has my hon. Friend entered into the proportion of free-grown sugar introduced into this country for home consumption as compared with slave-grown sugar? He would have seen, had he done so, that for the year 1849, the proportions were five and a half millions of cwts. of free-labour sugar, to half a million of cwts. of slave-grown sugar. It is, in fact, not the competition of slave-grown sugar which is ruining the West Indian planters, but it is the annually-increasing competition of free-labour sugar from other parts of the world; and if my hon. Friend is prepared to give to the West Indies that protection which he thinks is essential to restore them to prosperity, it must be done not by confining the restriction to the slave-grown sugar of Brazil and Cuba, but by extending to them the full protection which they enjoyed in former times against free-labour sugar—a proposition which I am sure my hon. Friend would not advocate, and a proposition which I am sure this House would never entertain. It has been often urged that we had only to exclude the slave-grown sugar from the market of this country, and to draw an equal quantity of free-labour sugar from the market of the world, in order to afford the protection desired; but this would be only creating a vacuum which would be at once filled up by the slave-labour sugar of Cuba and the Brazils. The slaveowners in those countries would laugh at your precautions, and would know that there were still markets enough open to them to induce them to go on cultivating sugar and increasing the number of their slaves as before. But if any man could doubt that the attempt must be perfectly futile, I think those who heard the speech of my hon. Friend the Member for Westbury, and attended to the manner in which he demonstrated that the recent changes in our navigation laws have added an insurmountable obstacle to the carrying out of any such arrangement, must have every shadow of a doubt removed. It is not measures of this kind for excluding sugar of one kind, and laying heavier duties on the produce of this country or that, by which we can extirpate the slave trade, the object of which I know my hon. Friend has most at heart. No doubt many hon. Gentlemen have protested against the African squadron, and against our maintaining a maritime police as being insufficient to effect the suppression of the slave trade. But I have never maintained that that alone was sufficient to put the slave trade down, though I have always contended that without this maritime police other measures would be fruitless. The House may rest assured that other measures for this object are in progress, and that we are, by treaties with native chiefs in Africa, and by other exertions on the other side of the Atlantic, pursuing measures which, I trust, if properly continued, in the course of the next year will enable us to entertain better hopes that the slave trade will be, if not extinguished, at least very considerably diminished. Now what is the state of the slave trade at the present moment? There are now in Africa 1,500 miles north of the line entirely free from the slave trade—of the entire 2,000 miles north of the line there are now only about 420 in which the slave trade at all exists; and I trust the measures now in operation may lead to the extirpation of the slave trade from that remaining portion north of the line. I, this very day, received a despatch from one of the commissaries at Sierra Leone, stating that during the quarter which had just expired, he can assert that not a single ship had left that place with slaves. South of the line there were 1,200 miles of coast in which the slave trade existed; but I believe it is no chimerical expectation to hold out that even there it will ere long be discontinued. And I hold it to be by no means that chimeral expectation which Gentlemen who sat in Committee have chosen to term it, that the combination of all the measures now being adopted may tend at no distant period to accomplish that end. And I must say that no object—I speak not now of those higher considerations which the right hon. Gentleman has adverted to, and which, I think, nevertheless ought to influence a nation like the British in matters of this kind—but, independently of these higher considerations, taking even the most narrow views of temporal interests, I must say that nothing can be accomplished that would tend more to further the commercial interests and prosperity of this country than the entire extirpation of the slave trade. No part of the globe offers more scope for the commercial enterprise of this country than the interior and the coast of Africa. We have a demand for the things which she produces, and she stands in want of the goods that we can supply. In many other parts of the world, where there is a larger population to consume what we can export, there is a want of commodities to offer in return. Our trade with China has been limited to a certain degree by a want of the commodities to exchange for our products. But, in Africa, commodities for barter abound; there is hardly anything of value which cannot be found there to offer in exchange for the goods that we can supply. Cotton might be grown on the western coast in infinite quantity and of the best quality. And, recollecting how precarious is the source of supply which we now derive from the united States of America—recollecting how the growing manufactures of America herself are now annually absorbing more of the cotton which she produces—and recollecting what a vast amount of our own population depend upon the manufactures from that raw material for daily bread, it becomes a matter of the most extreme importance that we should seek out other sources of supply. Palm oil, an article also of great value and much used, is found in abundance in that country: there are also coffee, ivory, gold—in fact, hardly anything of value and utility might not be produced or found in Africa, and might not be received in return for our own exports. I say, therefore, it is an object of great national importance, that by an end being put to the slave trade, we should be enabled to enter into commercial intercourse with the vast population of that region. I will not follow the right hon. Gentleman into all those details connected with our West Indian possessions upon which he thought fit to enter. I confine myself solely to the Motion of my hon. Friend. I contend that it is not a method that can be of any avail in putting down the traffic against which the Motion is levelled. I contend that without accomplishing its purpose it would tend to inflict a great injury on the comfort of the country, and would hold out to the West Indians a delusive hope which might induce them to relax their energies, and prevent them from adopting those other measures by which alone they can recover their station and prosperity; and therefore, on every ground, both of expediency and principle, I object to the Motion of my hon. Friend. It is insufficient for the purposes of humanity for which he brings it forward, and it would tend to reinstate the principle of protection in our commercial relations—a principle, I maintain, of fatal injury to the country, and inimical to the prosperity of every community to whose affairs it may be applied.


, in reply, said, he would not detain the House at that late hour with any lengthened remarks. He felt very grateful to the Government generally for the measures it had adopted to suppress the slave trade, and especially to the noble Lord who spoke last, for the manner in which he had at all times directed his efforts to securing that object. But he must urge his Motion on the adoption of the House, simply on the ground that while on the one hand we sent out a fleet to the coast of Africa to put down that nefarious traffic, we encouraged it on the other hand by the admission of slave-grown produce.

Question put.

The House divided:—Ayes 234; Noes 275: Majority 41.

List of theAYES.
Acland, Sir T. D. Cole, hon. H. A.
Adderley, C. B. Coles, H. B.
Alexander, N. Colvile, C. R.
Arbuthnott, hon. H. Conolly, T.
Archdall, Capt. M. Corry, rt. hon. H. L.
Bagge, W. Cotton, hon. W. H. S.
Bagot, hon. W. Currie, H.
Bailey, J. Damer, hon. Col.
Baillie, H. J. Davies, D. A. S.
Baldock, E. H. Deedes, W.
Baldwin, C. B. Dick, Q.
Bankes, G. Dickson, S.
Barrington, Visct. Disraeli, B.
Bateson, T. Drumlanrig, Visct.
Benbow, J. Drummond, H.
Bennet, P. Drummond, H. H.
Bentinck, Lord H. Duckworth, Sir J. T. B.
Beresford, W. Duncombe, hon. A.
Berkeley, hon. G. F. Duncombe, hon. O.
Best, J. Dundas, G.
Blair, S. Dunne, Col.
Blakemore, R. Du Pre, C. G.
Blandford, Marq. of East, Sir J. B.
Boldero, H. G. Edwards, H.
Booth, Sir E. G. Emlyn, Visct.
Bowles, Adm. Evelyn, W. J.
Bramston, T. W. Farnham, E. B.
Bremridge, R. Fellowes, E.
Brisco, M. Floyer, J.
Broadley, H. Forbes, W.
Broadwood, H. Forester, hon. G. C. W.
Bromley, E. Fox, S. W. L.
Brooke, Lord Fuller, A. E.
Brooke, Sir A. B. Galway, Visct.
Bruce, C. L. C. Gaskell, J. M.
Buck, L. W. Gladstone, rt. hon. W. E.
Buller, Sir J. Y. Goddard, A. L.
Bunbury, W. M. Gooch, E. S.
Burghley, Lord Gordon, Adm.
Burrell, Sir C. M. Gore, W. R. O.
Burroughes, H. N. Goulburn, rt. hon. H.
Cabbell, B. B. Granby, Marq. of
Cardwell, E. Greene, T.
Carew, W. H. P. Guernsey, Lord
Chatterton, Col. Gwyn, H.
Chichester, Lord J. L. Hale, R. B.
Christopher, R. A. Halford, Sir H.
Christy, S. Hall, Col.
Clive, hon. R. H. Halsey, T. P.
Clive, H. B. Hamilton, G. A.
Cobbold, J. C. Hamilton, J. H.
Cocks, T. S. Hamilton, Lord C.
Codrington, Sir W. Harris, hon. Capt.
Heald, J. Plumptre, J. P.
Herbert, H. A. Portal, M.
Herbert, rt. hon. S. Powlett, Lord W.
Hildyard, R. C. Prime, R.
Hildyard, T. B. T. Pugh, D.
Hill, Lord E. Reid, Col.
Hood, Sir A. Repton, G. W. J.
Hope, H. T. Richards, R.
Hope, A. Rufford, F.
Hornby, J. Rushout, Capt.
Hotham, Lord St. George, C.
Hudson, G. Sandars, G.
Johnstone, Sir J. Sandars, J.
Jones, Capt. Scott, hon. F.
Kerrison, Sir E. Seymer, H. K.
Knightley, Sir C. Sibthorp, Col.
Knox, Col. Sidney, Aid.
Lascelles, hon. E. Smythe, hon. G.
Law, hon. C. E. Smollett, A.
Lennox, Lord A. G. Somerset, Capt.
Lennox, Lord H. G. Somerton, Visct.
Lowisham, Visct. Sotheron, T. H. S.
Lindsay, hon. Col. Stafford, A.
Lockhart, A. E. Stanford, J. F.
Lockhart, W. Stanley, E.
Long, W. Stanley, hon. E. H.
Lowther, hon. Col. Stephenson, R.
Lowther, H. Stuart, H.
Lygon, hon. Gen. Stuart, J.
Mackenzie, W. F. Sturt, H. G.
Mahon, Visct. Sullivan, M.
Mandeville, Visct. Talbot, C. R. M.
Manners, Lord C. S. Taylor, T. E.
Manners, Lord G. Thesiger, Sir F.
Manners, Lord J. Thompson, Col.
March, Earl of Thompson, Ald.
Masterman, J. Thornhill, G.
Maunsell, T. P. Tollemache, J.
Maxwell, hon. J. P. Townley, R. G.
Meux, Sir H. Trevor, hon. G. R.
Miles, P. W. S. Trollope, Sir J.
Miles, W. Tyrell, Sir J. T.
Milnes, R. M. Verner, Sir W.
Moody, C. A. Vesey, hon. T.
Moore, G. H. Villiers, Visct.
Morgan, O. Villiers, hon. F. W. C.
Mullings, J. R. Vivian, J. E.
Mure, Col. Vyvyan, Sir R. R.
Naas, Lord Vyse, R. H. R. H.
Napier, J. Waddington, D.
Neeld, J. Waddington, H. S.
Neeld, J. Walpole, S. H.
Newdegate, C. N. Walsh, Sir J. B.
Newport, Visct. Wegg-Prosser, F. R.
Noel, hon. G. J. Welby, G. E.
Nugent, Lord West, F. E.
O'Brien, Sir L. Williams, T. P.
O'Connor, F. Willoughby, Sir H.
Oswald, A. Wodehouse, E.
Packe, C. W. Worcester, Marq. of
Pakington, Sir J. Wyvill, M.
Palmer, R. Yorke, hon. E. T.
Peel, Col. TELLERS.
Pennant, hon. Col. Buxton, Sir E. N.
Plowden, W. H. C. Evans, W.
List of the NOES.
Abdy, Sir T. N. Anson, hon. Col.
Adair, H. E. Armstrong, Sir A.
Adair, R. A. S. Armstrong, R. B.
Alcock, T. Arundel and Surrey, Earl of
Anderson, A.
Bagshaw, J. Evans, J.
Baines, rt. hon. M. T. Ewart, W.
Baring, rt. hon. Sir F. T. Fagan, W.
Barnard, E. G. Fagan, J.
Bass, M. T. Fergus, J.
Berkeley, Adm. Ferguson, Col.
Berkeley, C. L. G. Ferguson, Sir R. A.
Birch, Sir T. B. Fitzwilliam, hon. G. W.
Blake, M. J. Foley, J. H. H.
Blewitt, R. J. Fordyce, A. D.
Bouverie, hon. E. P. Forster, M.
Boyd, J. Fortescue, C.
Boyle, hon. Col. Fortescue, hon. J. W.
Brand, T. Fox, R. M.
Bright, J. Freestun, Col.
Brocklehurst, J. Gibson, rt. hon. T. M.
Brockman, E. D. Glyn, G. C.
Brotherton, J. Grace, O. D. J.
Brown, H. Graham, rt. hon. Sir J.
Brown, W. Granger, T. C.
Browne, R. D. Greene, J.
Bulkeley, Sir R. B. W. Grenfell, C. P.
Bunbury, E. H. Grenfell, C. W.
Burke, Sir T. J. Grey, rt. hon. Sir G.
Campbell, hon. W. F. Grey, R. W.
Carter, J. B. Grosvenor, Lord R.
Cavendish, hon. C. C. Guest, Sir J.
Cavendish, hon. G. H. Hall, Sir B.
Cavendish, W. G. Hallyburton, Lord J. F
Chaplin, W. J. Harris, R.
Charteris, hon. F. Hastie, A.
Childers, J. W. Hastie, A.
Cholmeley, Sir M. Hatchell, J.
Clay, J. Hawes, B.
Clay, Sir W. Hayter, rt. hon. W. G.
Clifford, H. M. Headlam, T. E.
Cobden, R. Heneage, G. H. W.
Cockburn, A. J. E. Heneage, E.
Coke, hon. E. K. Henry, A.
Colebrooke, Sir T. E. Heywood, J.
Collins, W. Heyworth, L.
Corbally, M. E. Hobhouse, rt. hon. Sir J
Cowper, hon. W. F. Hobhouse, T. B.
Craig, Sir W. G. Hodges, T. L.
Crawford, W. S. Hodges, T. T.
Crowder, R. B. Hogg, Sir J. W.
Cubitt, W. Hollond, R.
Currie, R. Howard, Lord E.
Curteis, H. M. Howard, hon. C. W. G
Dalrymple, Capt. Howard, hon. J. K.
Dashwood, Sir G. H. Howard, hon. E. G. G
Davie, Sir H. R. F. Howard, Sir R.
Dawson, hon. T. V. Hume, J.
Denison, J. E. Humphery, Ald.
Devereux, J. T. Hutchins, E. J.
D'Eyncourt, rt. hn. C. T. Hutt, W.
Divett, E. Jervis, Sir J.
Douglas, Sir C. E. Keating, R.
Duff, G. S. Keogh, W.
Duff, J. Kershaw, J.
Duke, Sir J. Kildare, Marq. of
Duncan, Visct. King, hon. P. J. L.
Duncan, G. Lascelles, hon. W. S.
Duncombe, T. Lemon, Sir C.
Dundas, Adm. Lewis, rt. hon. Sir T. F
Dundas, rt. hon. Sir D. Lewis, G. C.
Ebrington, Visct. Littleton, hon. E. R.
Ellice, rt. hon. E. Loch, J.
Ellis, J. Locke, J.
Elliott, hon. J. E. Lushington, C.
Enfield, Visct. Mackie, J.
Estcourt, J. B. B. M'Cullagh, W. T.
Evans, Sir D. L. M'Gregor, J.
M'Taggart, Sir J. Russell, hon. E. S.
Magan, W. H. Russell, F. C. H.
Mahon, The O'Gorman Rutherfurd, A.
Mangles, R. D. Salwey, Col.
Marshall, J. G. Scholefield, W.
Marshall, W. Scrope, G. P.
Martin, J. Seymour, Lord
Martin, C. W. Shafto, R. D.
Martin, S. Shell, rt. hon. R. L.
Matheson, J. Shelburne, Earl of
Matheson, Col. Simeon, J.
Maule, rt. hon. F. Slaney, R. A.
Melgund, Visct. Smith, rt. hon. R. V.
Milner, W. M. E. Smith, J. A.
Mitchell, T. A. Smith, J. B.
Moffatt, G. Somers, J. P.
Molesworth, Sir W. Somerville, rt. hon. Sir W.
Monsell, W. Spearman, H. J.
Morgan, H. K. G. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Morison, Sir W. Stanton, W. H.
Morris, D. Staunton, Sir G. T.
Mostyn, hon. E. M. L. Strickland, Sir G.
Mowatt, F. Stuart, Lord D.
Mulgrave, Earl of Stuart, Lord J.
Muntz, G. F. Sutton, J. H. M.
Norreys, Lord Talbot, J. H.
Norreys, Sir D. J. Tancred, H. W.
O'Brien, J. Tenison, E. K.
O'Brien, Sir T. Thicknesse, R. A.
O'Conneil, M. Thornely, T.
O'Connell, M. J. Tollemache, hon. F. J.
O'Flaherty, A. Towneley, J.
Ogle, S. C. H. Townshend, Capt.
Ord, W. Traill, G.
Owen, Sir, T. Trelawny, J. S.
Paget, Lord A. Tufnell, H.
Paget, Lord G. Turner, G. J.
Palmer, R. Tynte, Col. C. J. K.
Palmerston, Visct. Vane, Lord H.
Parker, J. Verney, Sir H.
Pearson, C. Villiers, hon. C.
Pechell, Sir G. B. Wakley, T.
Peel, rt. hon. Sir R. Wall, G. B.
Peel, F. Walmsley, Sir J.
Pelham, hon. D. A. Watkins, Col. L.
Pendarves, E. W. W. Wellesley, Lord C.
Perfect, R. Westhead, J. P. B.
Pigott, P. Willcox, B. M.
Pilkington, J. Williams, J.
Pinney, W. Willyams, H.
Power, Dr. Williamson, Sir II.
Price, Sir R. Wilson, J.
Pusey, P. Wilson, M.
Rawdon, Col. Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.
Ricardo, J. L. Wood, W. P.
Ricardo, O. Wrightson, W. B.
Rich, H. Wyld, J.
Robartes, T. J. A. Young, Sir J.
Roche, E. B.
Romilly, Col. TELLERS.
Romilly, Sir J. Hill, Lord M.
Russell, Lord J. Bellew, R. M.
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