HC Deb 10 April 1851 vol 115 cc1364-450

* Sir, I must apologise to the House for again bringing under its consideration a subject to which I have repeatedly called its attention in the course of the last two or three years—I mean, the amount of the expenditure of this country on account of the colonies. One of my chief reasons for asking the House to reconsider this question is, that there is a strong desire amongst various classes of the community, that certain obnoxious taxes should be repealed; in order to repeal them, there is a great wish that our national expenditure should, if possible, be diminished. Can any reduction be made in that expenditure without injury to the interests of the British empire? The greater portion of that expenditure is on account of the interest of the national debt, and in that no reduction can be made. The remainder of the national expenditure is on account of the government of the united kingdoms and of the colonies. I will not now express any opinion whether any considerable reduction can be made, and ought to be made, in the expenditure on account of the united kingdoms; but I must say, that I entertain a strong conviction that a considerable portion of our expenditure on account of the colonies is excessive, and that it can be diminished with- out injury to the interests either of the united kingdoms or of the colonies; and, therefore, I think that steps should be taken to relieve the people, as speedily as possible, from a portion of that burden.

In order to sustain these positions, I will first state, as correctly as I can, the amount of the annual expenditure of this country on account of the colonies. I am sorry that I cannot do so completely and correctly for any period later than the year 1846–47; because no later returns upon which I can rely have been presented to Parliament. Since that period some reductions have been made in our colonial I expenditure, for which the Colonial Office deserves credit; hut I believe they have been inconsiderable in amount compared to those which, in my opinion, could be made. In the year 1846–7, the expenditure of this country, on account of the colonies, amounted to 3,500,000l. It consisted chiefly of two items: namely, civil expenditure about 500,000l.; and military expenditure about 3,000,000l.

I will begin with the military expenditure, under which head I include ordnance and commissariat expenditure. This expenditure has increased very rapidly in the last twenty years. In 1832, it was only 1,800,000l.; in 1835, it became 2,000,000l.; in 1843–4, it amounted to 2,500,000l.; and in 1846–7, to 3,000,000l.; an increase of 1,200,000l. in the interval between 1832 and 1846–7. The sum of 3,000,000l. did not by any means represent the whole military expenditure of this country on account of the colonies for the year 1846–7; it was merely the effective expenditure; that is, the sum actually paid by this country for military services then being performed in the colonies; or, in other words, the sum required for the pay, clothing, maintenance, and establishments of the 45,700 regular troops, artillerymen, and engineers, then serving in the colonies. Besides the effective military expenditure, there is non-effective military expenditure on account of the colonies; that is, the sum annually paid for military services which have been performed in the colonies; I mean the sum paid in the shape of half-pay, pensions, and retiring allowances to the soldiers who have served in the colonies; or, in other words, that portion of the dead weight which has been produced by the military force which has been maintained on account of the colonies. Therefore, to estimate the whole military cost of the colonies to this country, I must add to 3,000,000l?. of effective military expenditure a proportionate amount of the dead weight. Now, in the year 1846–7, our whole military expenditure, including ordnance and commissariat, amounted to 9,000,000l.; of this sum 6,600,000l. were effective expenditure, and 2,400,000l. noneffective; of the 6,600,000l. of effective expenditure, I have already said that 3,000,000l., or 5–11ths, were on account of the colonies; I am, therefore, entitled to infer that 5–11ths of the dead weight, or about 1,000,000l. of it, were also on account of the colonies. So that the whole military cost of the colonies to the united kingdoms in the years 1846–7, must have amounted to 4,000,000l. To this sum I should be entitled to add a further sum on account of the extra troops which are required to be kept in this country for the purpose of relieving the troops in the colonies; and I will quote high authorities for so doing. The late Sir R. Peel, in making his financial statement for 1845, said— The main expense on account of the Army is caused by the extent of our colonial possessions. To make no provision for the relief of the troops serving in them, would be inconsistent with humanity in the first place, and with prudence in the second.… You have thirty-five battalions at home, not, as it is supposed, for the purpose of restraining the population, but for the purpose of maintaining the system of relief for your regiments serving abroad. Your rule is five years at home, and ten years abroad for your regiments."—[3 Hansard, lxxvii. 464–466.] The other night the Secretary at War, on proposing the Army Estimates, stated that one of his great arguments for keeping up an effective military force at home was to maintain the system of relief established by Sir R. Peel's Government. According to that system, for every two regiments serving in the colonies one regiment would be required to be maintained at home to afford relief. Last year the military force in the colonies, exclusive of colonial corps, which do not require to be relieved, amounted to about 30,000 men, and that force would consequently require 15,000 men in this country for their relief. I should likewise be entitled to charge to the colonial military account a considerable sum for native wars, rebellions, and other extraordinary events. If I put nothing down for these two items, I can scarcely he accused of over-estimating the military cost of the colonies to the united kingdoms when I reckon it at not less than 4,000,000l. a year; a sum amounting to about nine shillings in the pound sterling on our exports to the colonies in 1849; exceeding by 600,000l. the whole of the local revenues of the colonies for that year; and equal to the sum collected from the window tax and the excise duties on soap, paper, and hops.

Can any reduction be made in this expenditure? It is evident that no immediate reduction can be made in the 1,000,000l. of dead weight, for that depends upon the number of troops which have been maintained in the colonies. If, however, the military force there were permanently reduced, ultimately the dead weight would be reduced. It is only, then, in the 3,000,000l. of effective expenditure that any immediate reduction can be made. How is this sum expended? The greater portion of it is spent on the pay, clothing, and maintenance of the troops in the colonies. In the year 1846–7, the military force there consisted of 42,000 regular troops, 3,000 artillerymen, and about 700 engineers, in all 45,700. At present, I believe, the number is about 43,000, exclusive of the reinforcements which have been sent to the Cape of Good Hope. In 1846–7, the pay, clothing, and maintenance of the troops in the colonies cost this country about 2,100,000l. These troops were scattered over thirty-seven colonies; in each colony there is one or more stations; in each station there is a commissariat, ordnance, or barrack establishment, and, generally, all three; to these establishments are attached commissariat officers, barrack masters, storekeepers, clerks of the works, and sundry workmen. The salaries of these persons cost this country, in 1846–7, 280,000l. In each station there is a storehouse; in each Storehouse there is a quantity of stores; according to a return presented to the Committee on ordnance expenditure, the value of the stores in the colonial storehouses in 1846–7, amounted to 2,500,000l.—a quantity of stores sufficient for twenty years' consumption during peace, if they do not perish previously; yet in that year we spent in ordnance stores for the colonies 140,000l. In connexion with these stations there are generally either fortifications, or ordnance works, or other military buildings; these buildings have been erected at a great expense, and cost this country annually a large sum for improvements and repairs. We expended, in the interval between 1829 and 1847, 3,500,000l. on these buildings; and in 1846–7, we paid 330,000l. for improve- ments and repairs to these buildings. The last item I will mention is the transport of troops and stores, which in 1846–7 cost 110,000l. Adding these items together, their sum is about 3,000,000l. It is evident that the cost of all these things must, in a series of years, be in proportion to the number of troops we maintain in the colonies. For if we keep a large body of troops in the colonies, they must be well paid, fed, and clothed; there must be barracks for them to dwell in, stores for them to consume, fortifications for them to defend, ships to transport them to and from the colonies; and, finally, half-pay and pensions for them when unfit for service. I will not deny that some saving might be made in the details of this expenditure, but that saving cannot but be trifling compared to the whole sum expended, as long as we maintain the present amount of military force in the colonies. Therefore, if we wish to make a reduction in the military cost of the colonies, we must begin by making a reduction in the military force maintained there at our expense.

Can we reduce the military force in the colonies without injury to the interests of the British empire? Do we require that 45,000 troops should be maintained in the colonies at the expense of the united kingdom? and, if so, for what purposes, and how are they employed? In 1846–7, about 3,000 men were serving in the convict colonies of Bermuda and Van Diemen's Land; about 16,700 men kept garrison in the military stations, including Ceylon; and the remainder, amounting to about 26,000 men, were stationed in the colonies, properly so called.

I will say nothing on the general question of convict colonies, except that in such colonies troops must be kept to preserve order among the convicts. In Bermuda, in 1846–7, the military force amounted to 1,361 men, and cost about 74,000l.; in Van Diemen's Land, in the same year, the military force amounted to 1,500 men, and cost about 93,000l. With regard to Van Diemen's Land, I have given notice that on an early occasion I will move an address, praying Her Majesty to comply with the prayers of the inhabitants of that colony, by discontinuing transportation to it. If their universal prayer be listened to, and transportion discontinued, the troops might be ultimately withdrawn from Van Diemen's Land, with a saving in the effective military expendi- ture of this country to the amount of about 93,000l. a year.

I next proceed to the military stations. Omitting those which are situated within the boundaries of the colonies properly so called, our chief military stations are Gibraltar, Malta, the Ionian Islands, the stations on the west coast of Africa (including the newly-acquired Danish forts), St. Helena, the Mauritius, Hong-Kong, Labuan, and the Falkland Islands; and to these I will add, for the sake of brevity, Ceylon, The military force in these stations in 1846–7 amounted to about 16,700 men, and they cost about 710,000l. I will not now inquire whether we ought to maintain a garrison in every one of these places. On a former occasion I attempted to prove that it was not worth while to keep about 3,000 troops in the Ionian Islands at the cost of about 90,000l. a year; that we had thrown away about 400,000l. on fortifications at Corfu; and that the fortresses of Malta and Gibraltar, which we were then repairing and improving, at an estimated cost of about 460,000l., were sufficient for all the wants of Great Britain in the Mediterranean. I also attempted to prove, with regard to the stations on the west coast of Africa, that, by abandoning our crusade against the slave trade, these stations might be dispensed with; and that, by so doing, and also withdrawing the African squadron, a saving might be made in the military and naval expenditure of this country to the amount of 450,000l. a year. I also remarked that Ceylon properly belonged to our East Indian system of States; that, in all probability, it would be better governed if it were transferred to the East India Company, and that a saving might thus be made of about 83,000l. a year.

Sir, I must observe, that the motives which have led this country to acquire military stations are very different from those which have induced us to promote the plantation of colonies; and that our policy with regard to military stations is quite of a different character from our policy with regard to colonies properly so called. The motives under the influence of which this country has acquired military stations may be stated in a very few words. Great Britain has long been, and in the opinion of its statesmen, its Parliaments, and its people, ought to continue to be, essentially a naval Power. It aspires to be the first naval Power on the earth, to carry on commerce in every portion of the globe, and to protect that commerce with its fleets. It desires that those fleets should patrol the ocean, and be the maritime police of mankind. In order to refit those fleets, to afford shelter to them, and to give protection to its merchant ships when war is raging, it has been the policy of the statesmen of England, with the consent and approbation of the people and Parliament, to take military possession of harbours in various parts of the world. Assuming this policy to be a sound one, I ask, what are the rules which should determine the number of our military stations, and the selection of their sites? I think the rules should be, that, subject to the condition of accomplishing the objects of the naval policy of Great Britain, our military stations should be as few in number as possible, and that each station should be selected so as to cost as little as possible. They should be as few in number as possible; for every military station must cost a considerable sum of money annually; therefore every superfluous military station is a permanent source of unnecessary expense. It is also a cause of weakness; for an empire is strong, cœterie paribus, in proportion as it has fewer points to defend; for the fewer points it has to defend, the more it can concentrate its forces, and therefore the more powerful it is either for offence or defence. In order that our military stations may be as few in number as possible, consistently with the attainment of the objects of the naval policy of Great Britain, it is evident that they should be carefully chosen, so as most readily to afford shelter and protection our ships. Therefore they ought to situated as near as possible to the great; commercial highways of the ocean. Secondly, each military station should be selected with the view of coasting as little as possible. Now, the cost of a station depends chiefly upon the number of troops; required to defend it; and that number depeuds upon the military strength or weakness of the position of the station; therefore the best place, cœteris paribus, for a military station is one which can with difficulty be attacked, and can easily be defended by a small garrison. It is evident that these conditions are best fulfilled by small islands, or peninsular extremities of continents; the less connected with the adjoining land the better. I think, there-I fore, that the true policy of this country, with regard to military stations, is to occupy only a few commanding positions with good harbours. They should he small, isolated, salient points; easily defended, and close to the beaten paths of the ocean. I hold it to be quite contrary to the true policy of Great Britain to take military possession of large islands or vast portions of continents. I consider it to be utterly absurd for an essentially naval Power to attempt the military defence of extensive coasts or long lines of frontier. That attempt has been made in South Africa with disastrous and costly results. If similar attempts be made, and vast, numerous, and costly military stations be occupied by this country, I fear much that the result will be, that the extremities of the empire will gradually drain it of its wealth and vital powers, that the centre will thus become paralysed, and that finally the empire will fall abroad and perish of exhaustion. I think that amongst our military stations those which best fulfil the conditions of good military stations are Gibraltar, at the mouth of the Mediterranean; Malta, near its centre; Bermuda, in mid-Atlantic; Halifax, commanding the coast of North America; Barbadoes, amongst the Islands of the West Indies; the peninsular extremity of South Africa, on the route to India; the Mauritius, on the same road, and commanding the Persian Gulf; Singapore, at the entrance of the China Seas; and perhaps Hong-Kong, amidst those seas. I have named these eight stations, because I am inclined to believe that it is not necessary, for the attainment of the objects of the naval policy of Great Britain, that we should keep military possession of more than these eight stations. To garrison them as they were garrisoned in 1846–7, a military force of 17,000 men would be sufficient; and they would cost about 850,000l. a year in effective military expenditure. This is not much more than the sum which the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, with its Kaffir wars, annually costs us on the average of years. I think that this fact illustrates, in the most striking manner, the importance of the rule which I have laid down with regard to the selection of military stations. For if we consider, as some persons do, the whole colony of the Cape of Good Hope to be merely a military station, then the expense of this one ill-chosen station would be equal to the expense of our eight best-chosen stations; and the sum of money which we lavish upon the Cape of Good Hope would, in my opinion, be sufficient to defray the military expense of all the stations which our naval policy requires.

I will now proceed to the colonies properly so called. I mean the North American colonies, the West Indian plantations, the Australasian colonies, with the exception of Van Diemen's Land, and our South African empire. The military force in these colonies in 1846–7 amounted to about 26,000 men, and they cost about 2,000,000l. in effective military expenditure. If to this sum be added a proportionate amount of the dead weight, the whole military cost of these colonies to the United Kingdoms would amount to about 2,600,000l. a year. This sum is equal to 8s. in the pound on our exports to these colonies in 1849, and was as large as the whole amount of their local revenues in that year. I have heard some persons who take merely a commercial and economical view of these questions, ask, why do we retain dominion over these colonies? Would it not be better for us if they were independent? Our independent colonies of the United States, say these Gentlemen, cost us only about 10,000l. a year for consular and diplomatic services, and we sent them in 1849 12,000,000l. of exports, or twice the value of our exports to colonies which are costing us 2,600,000l. a year, or 260 times as much as the United States. Now, I answer, that the greater portion of this expenditure is unnecessary, or may ultimately be rendered unnecessary. I maintain, that if these colonies were governed as they ought to be governed, no troops ought to be maintained in them at the expense of the United Kingdoms, except for strictly imperial purposes, and that the expenses of all troops required for local purposes ought to be paid by the colonies. And, if these views be correct, it appears to me that the military force maintained in the colonies at the expense of this country might ultimately be reduced to the men required for the military stations.

With the permission of the House, I will explain, as shortly as I can, the reasons which have led me to the conclusions which I have just stated. I have said that the policy of this country, with regard to its true colonies, is of a very different character from its policy with regard to military stations; for the motives which have induced it to plant colonies are quite different from those which led it to occupy military stations. We all know that, ever since the new world was discovered, it has been the unceasing desire of England to plant that new world with new Englands. It was the ardent wish of this country that its children should occupy the uninhabited portions of the earth's surface, and carry along with them to their new homes the laws, the institutions, and feelings of Englishmen; that they should there become hold, energetic, and self-relying men, capable and willing to aid their parent in times of need, and not weak puling infants, ever crying to their mother for assistance, and emptying her purse. Now, it is as true of bodies of men as it is of individual men, that the best mode of developing in them energy, courage, and self-reliance, is not to coddle and fondle them, and to tie them to a mother's apron, but to throw them upon their own resources, and to let them rough it and battle it with the world. Therefore, it was the old polity of this country, with regard to plantations, and it still is the recognised constitutional doctrine with regard to them, that their inhabitants should take care of themselves, and manage their local affairs, and govern themselves by representative institutions. Now, most of our colonies, properly so called, do possess representative institutions, and all of them are about to possess those institutions. With such institutions no taxes can be levied in these colonies without the consent of the representatives of the people; and their inhabitants cannot be constitutionally compelled to contribute out of their taxes to the revenues of the united kingdoms. Therefore, reciprocally, the people of the united kingdoms ought not to be called upon to pay out of their own taxes any portion of the local expenses of such colonies; and, consequently, in such colonies all expenses for local purposes should be paid out of local revenues, while all expenses for imperial purposes should be paid out of imperial revenues.

I will now proceed to apply the principles which I have laid down, to answering the question, who ought to pay for the military force which is maintained in a colony? To do so, I must first endeavour to determine, among the various purposes for which a military force may be required in a colony, what are those which ought to be considered as imperial purposes, and what are those which ought to he considered as local purposes? In answer, I say there are only two objects for which a military force can be required in a colony; namely, either for war with external foes, or to preserve order and tranquillity within the colony. First, with respect to war with external foes; a military force may be required in a colony in consequence of its being engaged, or likely to be engaged, in war with a foreign potentate (with a lawful Power, to use the language of the law of nations); or a military force may be required in a colony for war with savage tribes on its frontier. Now, it is evident that a colony cannot be lawfully engaged in war with a lawful Power, without the empire of which it is a part being also engaged in that war. Therefore, every such war is, necessarily, an imperial war; the troops employed in it are employed for imperial purposes, and, consequently, their expenses ought to be paid by the imperial Government; though, in certain cases, it would not be unreasonable to expect that the colonies should assist the empire both I with troops and money; and I feel convinced that, if the colonies were governed as they ought to he, they would gladly and willingly come to the aid of the mother country in any just and necessary war. They would do as the men of our old North American plantations did during a war with France, when they willingly bore a large portion of the burden of the contest with that monarchy and its Indian allies, and in every way proved themselves to be the hardy and generous sons of England.

I will next speak of wars with savage tribes on the frontier of a colony. The answer to the question, whether such wars ought to be considered as strictly local wars or not—whether any portion of the expense of such wars ought to be defrayed by the local government or not—the answers to these questions depend upon the nature of the government of the colony. If the inhabitants of a colony have representative institutions, and the management of their local affairs, and if the relations be I been them and the frontier tribes be conducted by local officers; then the local Government must be held responsible for the result; and, if the result be war, and that war be conducted by local officers, and the expenditure on account of it be under local control, then I think that it is quite clear that the whole expense of that war should be paid by the colony, and no portion of it by the united kingdoms. And I feel convinced that, if the local Governments had to pay the expense of native wars, those Governments would take care not rashly to engage in war; and, when engaged in it, it would be for their interest to bring the war to a termination as speed- ily as possible, and at the least possible cost. Unfortunately it is quite different when the imperial Government has to pay for a native war. Then it is the interest of many persons in the colony that the war should be made as expensive as possible. Now, it is very difficult for the imperial Government at home to exercise any efficient control over such expenditure. For instance, no one in this country has a distinct idea how 2,000,000l. were spent in the last Kaffir war. Sir Henry Pottinger told Lord Grey that it was impossible to convey an adequate idea of the confusion, the unauthorised expense, and the attendant peculation which prevailed during that war. And the Commissioners of Audit have reported that they could not audit the accounts, for no accounts had been kept. I believe that it is almost impossible for the imperial Government at home to exercise any real check over such expenditure; and I believe that it is also very difficult, if not impossible, for the imperial officers in the colony to resist the claims poured in upon them from every quarter; for, the imperial purse being considered inexhaustible, every one in the colony is intent either upon picking it himself, or assisting others in picking it, whenever a fair opportunity, like a native war, occurs. On the other hand, the resistance offered by the imperial officers in a colony is generally languid, for they have no clear and permanent interest in offending those around them by keeping down imperial expenditure, provided it do not become so extravagantly great as to cause a great outcry in this House; and, generally speaking, hon. Members know nothing about the matter till two or three years after the money has been spent. Then it is too late; fair promises are made, which are invariably broken. It appears to me to be of the utmost importance that we should not, if possible, be made liable for any bill on account of native wars; for such a bill will always be a most extortionate one; and yet in no one case that I remember were the extortioners contented, but invariably accused us of being mean, shabby, and not paying enough. If in any exceptionable case it should be deemed expedient to assist a colony possessing self-government, in a native war, I am inclined to think that the wisest plan would be to give the colony a round sum of money, and let the local Government employ it in the manner which it deems best. On the other hand, I must admit that if the inhabitants of a colony do not possess representative institutions, if they have no voice in the management of their local affairs, if they are governed by the Colonial Office, and if the relations between them and the native tribes are conducted by officers responsible to the Colonial Office; then the Colonial Office, that is, the imperial Government, must be held responsible for the result, and if the result be war, as the war will be conducted by imperial officers, as the expenditure on account of it will be under imperial control, as such wars are apt to be hastily produced, unnecessarily prolonged, and conducted with lavish expense, it would not be just to throw the whole burden of such wars on the colony; but a portion, at least, of the expense ought to be paid by the imperial Government.

I will now proceed to the question, who ought to pay the expense of the troops which may be required in a colony to preserve internal order and tranquillity? I think the answer to this question depends, also, upon the nature and form of the government of a colony; for disorder, riots, and insurrections are almost invariably the consequences of bad government. Therefore, if the inhabitants of a colony have representative institutions, and the management of their local affairs, and if they mismanage those affairs, then they should be held responsible for the result; and if the result be riots and insurrections, then it is clear that the expense of the troops, required to preserve internal order and tranquillity in the colony, ought to be paid by the colony. On the other hand, if the inhabitants of a colony do not possess representative institutions, but are governed by the Colonial Office, then the Colonial Office, that is, the imperial Government, should be held responsible for the result; and therefore, if troops be required to preserve internal order and tranquillity, the expense ought to be paid by the imperial Government. For the Colonial Office is responsible to Parliament; therefore, if the Colonial Office misgovern a colony, Parliament is to blame; and it is but just that the people of this country should pay the penalty. It is also a good thing that they should every now and then be severely fined on account of Colonial Office misgovernment. Because, generally speaking, little attention is paid in this House to the grievances of the colonies, and little redress given, unless those grievances are likely to be presented to us in the shape of a long bill for a war, or a rebellion, or something else of the same kind. For instance, Canada obtained responsible government by sending us in, according to my hon. Friend the Member for Montrose, a bill of 5,000,000l. for a rebellion. The last Kaffir war, with a bill of 2,000,000l., set us all a-thinking about representative institutions for the Cape of Good Hope; and I have no doubt that the present Kaffir war, with another bill of 2,000,000l., will convert us all into Lycurguses and Solons, so far as that colony is concerned.

Sir, if the arguments which 1 have used are sound, they lead to the conclusions—1st, that no troops ought to be maintained at the expense of the united kingdoms, in any one of our true colonies, after it has obtained-self government, either for war with native tribes, or to preserve internal peace and tranquillity; 2nd, that when the British empire is engaged, or likely to be engaged, in war with a foreign potentate, then the expense of the troops required to defend the colony should be paid by the imperial Government; and, 3rdly, if it lie expedient, for imperial purposes, to garrison certain fortresses or naval stations, situated within the boundaries of our true colonies, then the expense of those garrisons ought also to be paid out of the imperial revenues.

I will now proceed to consider separately each group of colonies. I will begin with our North American colonies. In the years 1834 and 1835, a Committee of this House was appointed to inquire into our colonial military expenditure. Lord Fortescue was chairman of that Committee. Lord Hardinge, the late Sir Henry Parnell, and my right hon. Friend the Member for Coventry, were Members of it; and I am sure that my views with regard to the North American colonies differ very slightly, if at all, from those of my right hon. Friend. I am delighted to see him in the House, because I know that there is no person in the House who understands colonial questions better than he understands them; and I feel deeply grateful to him for much good advice he has given me on these subjects. This Committee recommended that the strictest economy should be observed in every branch of our colonial military expenditure. According to a return presented to that Committee, I find that the number of troops, including artillery and engineers, in the North American colonies in 1835, was 5,369 men. The effective military expenditure for these colonies in that year amounted to about 337,000l. Since that period there has been a great increase in the military force and expenditure in the North American colonies. In the interval between 1829 and 1846–7 we spent 1,300,000l. on ordnance works in these colonies; and in 1846–7 the number of troops in these colonies amounted to 9,743 men, and the effective military expenditure was 645,000l.-—an increase, therefore, as compared to 1835, of 4,374 men, with an augmentation in expenditure of 308,000l. I find that in 1846–7 we spent for military objects in these colonies, a sum equal to six-sevenths of their local revenue, and amounting to 5s. 8d. in the pound on our exports to them in 1849. Last year the military force in the North American colonies was about the same as it was in 1846–7. This year the noble Lord the Prime Minister stated that it is somewhat less than it was last year; still, according to the noble Lord's own statement, it far exceeds what it was in 1835. 1 ask the House to consider whether there is any necessity for this force being greater than it was in 1835? I ask, why was it increased? It was first increased in consequence of the rebellion in Canada. That rebellion was caused by Colonial Office misgovernment, for which we were justly fined. Since then the North American colonies, and especially Canada, have obtained responsible government, and far more self-government than they had in 1835; in fact, at the present moment they possess in some respects more control over their local affairs than the neighbouring States of the American Union; and I must say that 1 think Lord Grey deserves much credit for the wise and prudent policy which he has pursued with regard to these colonies, and especially for having determined to empower the Assembly of Canada to settle the question of the clergy reserves. According to the principles which I have laid down, no troops ought to be maintained at our expense in those colonies, except for strictly imperial purposes. Now, are there any imperial purposes for which it is necessary that troops should be maintained in these colonies? I have sometimes heard it said that we must keep a military force in these colonies to prevent annexation to the United States; but there is no danger of annexation to the United States, unless the majority of the inhabitants of these colonies desire annexation; and if they were to desire it, it would be great folly to attempt to resist annexation by force of arms; for such an attempt would certainly be unsuccessful, and the presence of a body of troops would only tend to lead to a disastrous, fruitless, and costly struggle. But I believe that there is, and will be, no wish on the part of the North American colonies to separate from us, as long as the wise and prudent policy of Lord Grey towards those colonies be adhered to. I have also heard it said that we must maintain a military force in the North American colonies, to guard against a sudden aggression from the United States. But before we fear such an aggression, let us consider the amount of the regular military force of the United States. In 1850 I believe it amounted to about 10,000 men. Now, if this amount of military force be sufficient for all the vast territories of the United States, extending from the river St. Lawrence to the Gulf of Mexico, from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific, how very much less than a third of 10,000 men would, according to the standard of the New World, be sufficient for our North American colonies? There is no danger of a sudden aggression from the United States as long as our North American colonists are sincerely attached to the British empire; and if such an event were to occur, I firmly believe they would be willing, as well as capable, to resist it. I have admitted that Halifax is a valuable naval station, and some persons consider Quebec to be an important imperial fortress, and consequently it is said that garrisons should be maintained in them at the expense of the united kingdoms. What amount of force would be required for these purposes? In 1835, the garrison of Halifax consisted of 1,549, and that of Quebec amounted to 1,107 men, making in all 2,656 men; therefore, according to my view, 3,500 men would be more than sufficient for all imperial purposes in the North American colonies. By reducing the force in these colonies to 3,500 men, a saving might be made in our effective military expenditure for the North American colonies to the amount of 400,000l. a year, as compared to the expenditure in 1846–7.

I will now proceed to our West Indian plantations; they are 16 in number; in 13 of them we have barrack establishments and troops; a couple of hundred men in one insignificant island, 150 in another, and so on. In the interval between 1829 and 1846–7 we spent 600,000l. on ordnance works in these colonies; and in 1846–7 the military force in them amounted to 6,261 men, and our effective military expenditure on account of them was 496,000l?.—a sum equal to 6–7ths of their local revenues, and amounting to 5s. 6d. in the pound on our exports to them in 1849. In former times, when slavery existed, a military force was required to keep down the slaves; but with the cessation of slavery that reason for a military force ceased. But if a military force be now required for these colonies to preserve internal order, it follows, from the principles which I have laid down, that the expense of such a force ought to be defrayed by the colonists; for most of them possess representative institutions, and therefore they ought to defray the expense of all troops required for local purposes; and troops required to preserve order in a colony are evidently required for local purposes. Now, are there any imperial purposes for which it is necessary to maintain a military force in these colonies? I have heard it said that a military force must be maintained in those colonies to guard against aggression from the United States. But I repeat that there is no danger of aggression from the United States, unless the majority of the colonists wish to separate from us; and if they were to entertain such a wish, I maintain that it would not be worth our while to retain them by force of arms. But if it be necessary to guard against foreign aggression, as most of the colonies are islands, it is evident that a naval force would be the best means of defending them; and as the House determined the other night not to diminish our naval force, we have abundant naval means to defend these colonies from aggression from any quarter. It is also said, that Jamaica and Barbadoes are important naval stations, in which garrisons ought to be kept, in conformity with the naval policy of Great Britain. If so, I ask what amount of troops would be required to garrison those stations? I find that in 1846–7, the number of troops in Jamaica was 1,692 men, and in Barbadoes 1,353 men; consequently about 3,100 men would be sufficient for all imperial purposes in the West Indian colonies. If this opinion be correct, then our military force in these colonies might be reduced to half the amount it was in 1846–7, with a saving of about 250,000l. a year in effective military expenditure.

Next, I will speak of the Australasian group of colonies. I have omitted Van Diemen's Land, because Van Diemen's Land is a convict settlement; and, as convicts are transported to that colony for the alleged advantage of the people of Eng- land, it is but just that the people of England should pay for the troops required to preserve order among the convicts. Strictly speaking, I have nothing to do with the question of the number of troops which ought to be maintained in Van Diemen's Land; but I must observe that, in determining the number of troops to be kept in that colony, two facts should be borne in mind: first, that we have just given to the inhabitants of Van Diemen's Land representative institutions; secondly, that the great majority of these inhabitants are most strenuously opposed to the continuance of transportation; therefore it is probable that the first use they will make of their new institutions will be to resist the continuance of transportation. Now I beg the hon. Gentleman the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies, to remind his noble Friend the Secretary of State for the Colonies of these facts, and to tell the noble Lord, that if he do not wish to repeat the farce he acted with regard to transportation to the Capo of Good Hope, if he do not intend to yield to threats and menaces, and if he be determined to continue transportation to Van Diemen's Land, he must augment the number of troops in that colony, in order to keep down the free colonists, as well as to preserve order among the convicts.

On the continent of Australia the number of troops in 1846–7 was 2,286 men, and the effective military expenditure was 92,000l. Since that period the greater portion of those troops have been withdrawn. I am glad to find, from despatches lately presented to Parliament, that Lord Grey intends to apply to the colonies of New South Wales and Victoria the principles which, in my opinion, ought to regulate our military expenditure with regard to our colonies properly so called. The noble Lord has stated his intention to reduce the military force in the colonies which I have just named, to a simple guard in their capitals, namely, in Sydney and Melbourne. He has informed the Governor of New South Wales, that "if a greater amount of force is required, the local Legislature must either make provision for raising a more considerable body of police, or provide for the pay and allowances of an additional number of troops." In another despatch the noble Lord makes; a remark well deserving of attention with regard to the next colony which I am about to mention, namely, New Zealand. That remark is, "That in the earlier days of British colonisation the colonists were left to depend, in a far greater degree than at present, on their own exertions. The inhabitants of what are now the United States of America were left, with exceedingly little assistance from the mother country, to defend themselves from the numerous and warlike tribes of Indians by whom they were surrounded." Now, I only ask you to return to the old policy of England with regard to her plantations, and to leave them to depend upon their own exertions, giving them, at the same time, local self-government.

I am sorry next to inform the House, that a considerable portion of the troops which were stationed in New South Wales have, by Lord Grey's directions, been transferred to New Zealand. In 1846–7, the military force stationed in that colony amounted to 1,629 men, with an effective military expenditure of 85,000l. Since then there has been a considerable increase both in force and expenditure. In 1848 the number of troops was 2,948, and they must have cost us at least 150,000l, exclusive of the 20,000l. or 30,000l. which we vote every year for civil expenses. This is a preposterous amount of expenditure for these islands; it is equal to more than 20s. in the pound on our exports to them, and is four times the amount of their local revenues. I must mention, also, with regard to these most costly possessions, that in the northern island, where the troops are stationed, there were, in 1848, almost as many soldiers as European men: the number of European men being only 3,157, and therefore exceeding the number of soldiers only by 209 men. And, in fact, in the province of New Ulster the number of soldiers, amounting to 1,798 men, exceeded the number of European men by 298 men. Why do we maintain this amount of force in New Zealand? For native wars. I will reserve my observations on native wars till I reach South Africa, and I will only express my conviction that if we were to give to the colonists of New Zealand free institutions, and the management of their local affairs, we might withdraw our troops from New Munster at least, and the colonists would be able to defend themselves, and would take care to be on good terms with the natives,

Lastly, I arrive at South Africa. The Committee of 1834 on colonial military expenditure, approved of a reduction of six men per company, in the military force which was then stationed in the Cape of Good Hope. It amounted to about 2,000 men, at a cost, in 1832, of about 100,000l. Since then there has been a large increase, both in force and expenditure, in consequence of Kaffir wars. In 1835 there was a Kaffir war, and our effective military expenditure in that year was 240,000l. In 1846–7 there was another Kaffir war; the military force was augmented to 6,196 men, and our effective military expenditure became 685,000l., a sum equal to 26s. for every pound of our exports to that colony, and three times the amount of its local revenues in 1849. The last Kaffir war cost us 2,000,000l. The present Kaffir war appears to be even more formidable than the last one, and I am afraid is likely to cost as much.

I wish now to call the most serious attention of the House to the present Kaffir war. It confirms and illustrates every one of my positions. The outbreak of that war was one of my chief reasons for giving notice of this Motion, and I must therefore ask the indulgence of the House while I make some observations with regard to it. There are three important questions with regard to the present Kaffir war, namely, Who is to pay for it? What has led to it? And what steps ought to be taken to relieve this country from any liability on account of similar wars? To the first question I answer, that, according to the principles which I have laid down, we are not entitled to throw the whole burden of the present Kaffir war upon the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, and that we are bound to bear a very considerable portion of the expenses of this war. First, because the inhabitants of the Cape of Good Hope do not possess representative institutions; they have not the management of their local affairs; they are governed directly by the Colonial Office, through the agency of Sir Harry Smith, and the relations with the Kaffir tribes have been conducted by Sir Harry Smith, and very strangely have those relations been conducted. Secondly, we are not entitled to throw the whole expense of this war upon the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, because it has broken out in British Kaffraria, which is no part nor portion of the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, but a separate province, governed by Sir Harry Smith, under a Commission separate from that under which he is Governor of the Cape of Good Hope. There can be no doubt, therefore, that we shall have to pay.

I proceed next to the question, what have been the causes of this war, and who is to blame for it? I think the papers which have been lately presented to the House clearly prove one of two things, either that Sir Harry Smith was very ignorant of the state of British Kaffraria, and the feelings of the Kaffirs, or that this outbreak has been produced by his mismanagement. The despatches which I now hold in my hand were delivered to hon. Members at the commencement of this Session. In every one of them Sir H. Smith described, in glowing language, "the unprecedented state of tranquillity" of British Kaffraria. He consoled Lord Grey for the failure of his attempt to transport convicts to the Cape of Good Hope by the gratifying intelligence, that "everything progresses most satisfactorily on the eastern frontier of this colony; "that the Kaffir police was most useful; that frontier depredations were almost unknown; that "we are overcoming witchcraft;" and that "the Kaffirs were contented and happy under the British rule." Lord Grey was delighted at this intelligence, and the noble Lord declared that he had no doubt of the wisdom of Sir Harry's arrangements, and of their beneficial results. Thus the noble Lord and the gallant General bandied compliments, and we, relying on their statements, began this Session under the happy delusion that British Kaffraria was a sort of terrestrial paradise; that our eastern frontier was safe; and, above all, that our pockets were safe from Kaffir inroads; and, therefore, that we might enjoy a squabble among ourselves about the disposal of a surplus revenue. Alas all is now changed. The wise arrangements of Sir Harry Smith are upset; the frontier system of Lord Grey is a failure; the sanguine anticipations of the noble Earl are disappointed; the Elysium of British Kaffraria has become a Tartarus; our pockets are in the act of being picked, and our surplus revenue is disposed of. What are the causes which have led to this sad change? I think they may be classed under three heads:—1. Encroachments by Europeans on the lands of the Kaffir. 2. The frontier system of Sir Harry Smith, sanctioned by the Colonial Office, which consisted in a minute, perpetual, and irritating interference with the affairs of the Kaffir, and in an unceasing and galling attempt to subvert the influence and authority of their chiefs.


Just the reverse.


I hope the noble Lord will hear me, and then answer me. The noble Lord relies on the statements of the Colonial Office, and those are generally erroneous. The third cause of war was, the complete ignorance of Sir H. Smith, and the consequent ignorance of the Colonial Office of the feelings which the Kaffirs entertained with respect to Sir H. Smith, and his proceedings.

I must observe, with regard to the first-mentioned cause of war, that almost all wars between Europeans and native tribes may be traced directly or remotely to disputes about land. These disputes generally arise from the encroachments by Europeans on the lands of the natives. These encroachments drive away the wild animals, the game of the hunter tribes, and curtail the pastures of the pastoral races: then the native tribes, deprived of their means of subsistence, must either starve, or encroach upon the lands of neighbouring tribes, and war with them, or rob and assail their European foes. The timid and gentle races lie down and die; the fierce and energetic resist. Sir, among savages few excel the Kaffirs in vigour, courage, and audacity; and they have often declared that they prefer death by our swords and bullets to death by starvation. Now, we have extended our empire in South Africa, not slowly, not gradually, as our population increased, and the natives decreased, slain by our liquors, diseases, and civilisation; but Sir Harry Smith has, within the last five years, extended that empire by huge, gigantic, and extravagant strides.

To explain Sir Harry Smith's proceedings in South Africa, I must ask permission to describe in a few words the form and character of our South African empire. South Africa is a lofty and elevated tableland; it projects from the Equator towards the Southern Pole in the shape of a huge promontory, bathed by the Atlantic, Southern, and Indian oceans. From the shores of these oceans the land mounts up by flights of mountain steps to the table-land of the interior. Between these mountain ranges and the Southern and Indian oceans there is a narrow strip of fertile land. There, in former times, dwelt the tribes of the Hottentots. Just two centuries ago, the Hottentots were assailed simultaneously by two most formidable foes. From the north-east came the Kaffirs, a negro race, probably with a large mixture of Arab, or rather Caucasian blood. Increasing num- bers, or a want of pasture for their cattle, or the attack of hostile and kindred tribes, had compelled them to abandon their homes under the tropics, and, like the Huns and Scandinavian swarms of old, to seek in the south new lands whereon to subsist. One of these swarms, called the Amakosa, under their great chief Togul, wrested from the Hottentots the territory between the Kei and Keiskamma rivers, now known by the name of British Kaffraria, the seat of the present war. About the same time, in the year 1650, the Dutch landed at the south-western extremity of Africa, where Cape Town is now situated. The Hottentots, assailed on the one side by the Dutch, and on the other by the Kaffirs, were exterminated or enslaved. Finally, Kaffir and Dutch, advancing from opposite directions, met in the province of Albany. There a petty warfare ensued, similar to the border warfare of England and Scotland. The Kaffir, like the Scot, deemed it a meritorious act to steal the cattle of his foe; and the Dutch, like the English, were not slow to retaliate. The Dutch Boers, encamped in military villages, were able not only to defend themselves, but, as their numbers increased, they gradually pushed the Kaffirs back. In 1806, we took final possession of the Cape of Good Hope. We soon began to interfere with the border system of the Dutch, and establish military posts on the frontier, with garrisons of regular troops. The imperial expenditure on account of those garrisons attracted very many Europeans to the frontier. The presence of the troops encouraged, facilitated, and hastened the encroachments of the Europeans on the lands of the Kaffirs; and, on various places, we took possession of their territories, and claimed authority over their chiefs. The Kaffirs resisted, stole the cattle of the colonists, and committed numerous depredations. The colonists retaliated; the troops were called out; and a Kaffir war ensued. With the termination of each war we added to our territories, and thus sowed the seeds of more cattle-stealing and more wars. As war followed on war, the Kaffirs improved in the art of war, acquired something of the skill of their opponents, and learnt the use of European weapons. Therefore, successively, every Kaffir war has become more formidable than the preceding one, requiring more troops, and costing a larger sum of money. In 1832, as I have already said, our military force in South Africa amounted only to 2,000 men, and our military expenditure for that year was about 100,000l. In 1835, there was a Kaffir war, and our military expenditure for that year amounted to 240,000l. In 1846–7, there was another Kaffir war, and the number of troops in South Africa was 6,196 men, and our military expenditure for that year amounted to 685,000?. On the conclusion of that war, Sir Harry Smith, with the sanction of the Colonial Office, added to the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, on its north-eastern side, the provinces of Victoria and Albert, containing about 3,600 square miles. Beyond these provinces, still to the north-east, Sir Harry Smith then added to our South African dominions, but not to the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, the territory of British Kaffraria, in which the present war commenced, and which contains about 3,900 square miles. Not content with these acquisitions, Sir Harry Smith then crossed the mountains which guarded the northern frontier of the Cape of Good Hope, and took possession of the whole tract of country between them and the Orange River; an area of the size of England, containing about 50,000 square miles of as barren a desert as any on the face of the earth. This desert had made our northern flank secure against the attacks of barbarians. Having uncovered this flank, Sir Harry Smith, still travelling northwards, crossed the Orange River in pursuit of the rebel Boers. These Boers had fled from Colonial Office oppression to Natal. There we first permitted them to establish a Government. Then we sent our troops to subdue them, and thus added to our dominions 10,000 square miles, situated on a harbourless ocean, with Kaffirs on one side, and their kinsmen, the equally warlike Zoolahs, on the other side. The taking possession of this worthless territory was an achievement of a former Government. In consequence of it, the Boers fled again, and crossed the mountains to the plains of the interior. Sir Harry Smith, as I have said, pursued them, and defeated them, and proclaimed the sovereignty of Great Britain over all the plains between the Great Orange River and the Vaal or Yellow River; an area of about 48,000 square miles, with a frontier of 600 miles, exposed to the incursions of the Zoolahs and other tribes of the same origin as the Kaffirs. Again, some of the Boers have fled northwards, and crossed the Yellow River, and if we persevere in our policy of pursuing them, we shall have to follow them to the Mountains of the Moon, and to add to our dominions all Africa south of the Equator. Thus Sir H. Smith, with the sanction of the Colonial Office, has since 1847 added 105,000 square miles to our South African possessions; an area nearly equal to that of the United Kingdoms; and our South African empire now covers the vast space of 282,000 square miles, an area equal to the whole of the Austrian empire, including Lombardy, and adding Piedmont to it. I calculate that on the frontier of this empire there is a line of 1,000 miles, as far as from here to Rome, exposed to the attacks of savages of the same blood as the Kaffirs, and as fierce, warlike, and energetic as the Kaffirs, whom Sir H. Smith in his last despatches describes as the most determined and reckless of barbarians. As yet we have fought only with the Kaffirs along a line of 200 miles; but the same causes which gave birth to wars with the Kaffirs are coming into operation along the whole of this frontier of 1,000 miles, and are likely, in course of time, to embroil us with all the native tribes which I -have mentioned. I dare not attempt to calculate what ft would cost us to defend this frontier with regular troops, in the same manner as we have defended the north-eastern frontier of the Cape of Good Hope. To defend these 200 miles, we have spent of late years not less than 600,000?. annually. From these data hon. Gentleman may calculate what the defence of 1,000 miles would cost.

To show some of the consequences of the encroaching policy of Sir H. Smith and of the Colonial Office, I will now refer to the blue book which has been delivered to us. I open it, and the first subject I see in it is entitled, "Boundary Dispute between Dutch Farmers and Tambookies." I will give the substance of Sir Andries Stockenstrom's account of that dispute. It was about land. The land belonged to the Tambookies, a Kaffir tribe, who had generally been on friendly terms with us. Prior to Sir Harry Smith's arrival on the frontier, in the winter of 1847, this land was situated without the colony. The Boers on the frontier memorialised Sir H Smith to annex it to the colony, and give it to them. Sir Harry Smith, in a reply written and signed by himself, granted the prayer of the memorial. A portion of the land in question was forthwith measured out for some of the Boers, and it so happened that the land so measured out belonged to a chief who had been our ally in the last war. This, said Sir Andries Stockenstrom, rendered the Governor prodigiously popular at the time. The Tam-bookies, however, refused to give up their land. The Boers threatened to expel them, and bitterly complained that they bad been deceived by the fine words of the Governor. Sir Andries Stockenstrom, in his letter of the 1st of July last, addressed to the Colonial Secretary, commented upon these proceedings of Sir H. Smith in the following words: These proceedings were calculated to "set the Boers and Tam-bookies at mutual slaughter," "to convert Her Majesty's most devoted servants into desperate rebels;" and "it was with the most gloomy forebodings that he (Sir A. Stockenstrom) trembled at the prospect of the almost inevitable consequence of these proceedings." Unfortunately these gloomy forebodings have come to pass. According to the last accounts in this blue book, these Tambookies have attacked the frontier, captured a quantity of cattle, and committed a long list of murders, and the Boers throughout the colony have displayed a rebellious spirit by their "dogged inactivity."

The next subject of importance in this book to which I refer is entitled, "Excitement throughout Kaffirland, by the Prophecies of a Witch-doctor." Sir Harry Smith had assured Lord Grey that he was putting down witchcraft: Sir Harry Smith was not so successful as be thought. Last autumn the belief in witchcraft sprang up again in Kaffirland, in consequence of the want of rain. From a long-continued drought, the pastures of the Kaffirs were burnt up, their cattle became skeletons and lost their milk, one of the chief means of subsistence to the Kaffirs; the calves died, the hopes of the future were destroyed, and the sufferings of the Kaffirs became intense, and produced amongst them feelings of desperation and animosity towards us. For before we came among them, when there was a want of rain, the Kaffirs used to lead their cattle from the plains to the mountain sides, where water is generally to be found; or they used, by changing their pastures, to follow the rain, for frequently when there was a drought in one part of their territory, rain was falling in another. In consequence of our encroachments, the power of the Kaffirs to change their pastures was greatly diminished, and, consequently, their sufferings from drought greatly augmented. In for mer times, f believe, the Kaffirs were per- mitted to pasture their herds at certain seasons on the unoccupied lands of the provinces of Victoria and Albert, which were then called the neutral ground; but since Sir Harry Smith added these provinces to the colony of the Cape, that permission has been refused. Sir, under the influence of these sufferings, the feelings of the Kaffirs towards us arc (as the well-informed writer of an interesting tale of the Kaffir wars justly observes) the same as those of the Gael to the Saxon, described in the verse of Sir Walter Scott. The Kaffir chief would exclaim, like Roderick Dhu:— These fertile plains, that softened vale, Were once the birthright of the Gael. Where dwells lie now? * * * Think'st thou we will not sally forth To spoil the spoiler as we may, And from the robber rend his prey? While often thousand herds there strays But one along yon river's maze, The Gael, of plains and rivers heir, Shall, with strong hand, redeem his share. These were the feelings of the Gael, and are the feelings of the Kaffir towards us. We subdued and civilised the Gael; but then their numbers were limited. We cannot subdue and civilise the Kaffir races, because their numbers are unlimited. We may, to use the words of Sir Harry Smith, exterminate those on our immediate frontier; but beyond them are others, and beyond them arc innumerable others, extending to the Equator and beyond. In course of time we might exterminate them up to a given line—I moan the line beyond which the European race cannot increase and multiply, and which line intersects the eastern coast a little to the north of Natal; but beyond that line there are innumerable and prolific hives of barbarians, whence they will for ever swarm forth to attack us with wars perpetual and costly.

I will now return to the subjects of the want of rain and the witch-doctor. There is a belief in Kaffirland, as there is in certain parts of this country, that certain persons called "witches," and certain things called" bewitching things," call cause injury to human beings, and to cattle, and prevent the falling of rain. The Kaffirs also believe that there are certain persons called "witch-doctors, who can discover witches and" bewitching things." Now, the Kaffirs attributed the drought of last year to witches, and a great witchdoctor appeared in British Kaffraria. He pretended, like Sir H. Smith, to put down witchcraft. Sir Harry was much aston- ished at his pretensions, and, as two of a trade never agree, Sir Harry ordered Colonel Mackinnon to secure this Mahomet, as he termed him, and to transport him to Robben Island. Colonel Mackinnon, however, told Sir Harry that this seizure would cause great irritation among the Kaffirs, and would endanger the tranquillity of the colony; that there had been nothing mischievous or warlike in the conduct of the witch-doctor; and that he ought not to be molested. On the other hand, I must state that it was generally believed in the colony that the witch-doctor had prophesied against the Europeans, and had attributed to them the sufferings of the Kaffirs; and that these prophecies had produced much excitement in Kaffirland. Sir Harry Smith and Colonel Mackinnon, on the contrary, attributed the excitement in Kaffirland to the efforts of Sir Harry Smith to overthrow the authority of the native chiefs. Without attempting to decide whose opinion was right, certain it is that great excitement did exist last autumn among the Kaffirs in British Kaffraria. That excitement produced much alarm among the frontier farmers; that alarm was increased by finding their Kaffir servants suddenly leave them; they began, therefore, to take precautions against an attack from the Kaffirs; and those precautions, according to Sir Harry Smith, alarmed the Kaffirs, who thought that the Boers were going to attack them. In the midst of this alarm and excitement, Sir Harry Smith wrote to Lord Grey, on the 14th of October last, that though "he attached no importance to this excitement," he would proceed at once to the frontier, and, on his arrival, he would report without delay. Accordingly, he wrote to Lord Grey on the 21st of October, and stated that "his Lordship need be under no apprehensions of an outbreak," and that a meeting of Kaffir chiefs was summoned for the 26th of October, when he, Sir Harry, would explain to them their true position. That meeting had very important consequences. The great Gaika Kaffir chief, Sandilli, did not attend it. He had been informed that he was accused of being on friendly terms with the witchdoctor, and he knew that an attempt had been made, by the order of Sir Harry Smith, to seize the witch-doctor. Sandilli declared that he was afraid of attending the meeting, lest he should be put in prison, for that once before, when he had attended a meeting, he had been put into prison. He therefore disobeyed Sir Harry Smith's order. Sir Harry immediately issued a proclamation, deposing Sandilli from the rank of chief. On the 31st of October, Sir Harry announced this event to Lord Grey, and assured the noble Earl that Sandilli possessed neither influence nor respect among his people. Never did Sir Harry Smith make a more incorrect statement. Twice has an attempt to capture Sandilli caused an outbreak of the Kaffirs. They rose one and all to defend him last winter, and there is not a man among them who would not gladly rush between a bullet and the person of Sandilli. In the same despatch Sir Harry stated, with reference to the deposition of Sandilli, that "a crisis had arrived which would test his system"—that "he had no apprehension of the result"—that the Kaffirs" were as fully sensible of their position as the most civilised beings could be"—that "every Kaffir who possessed anything was a supporter of the present Government"—and that, "if the chiefs had endeavoured to excite the people, they had signally failed." In the next depatch, dated the 6th of November, he assured Lord Grey that the crisis had passed most happily, and that therefore he should immediately leave the frontier and return to Cape Town. On his arrival there he wrote again to Lord Grey, on the 26th of November, assuring the noble Lord that "he had left British Kaffraria in a state of perfect tranquillity, the Kaffir people fully satisfied, and the chiefs expressing similar feelings." In the same despatch there is a passage which deserves the attention of the House, for it shows how events have falsified every expectation of Sir H. Smith. In that passage he informed Lord Grey that he was going to organise, in the colony of the Cape of Good Hope, a rural police, analogous to the Kaffir police, which had been" so remarkably efficient in British Kaffraria." According to the last accounts, almost every one of the Kaffir police has deserted to the enemy with their horses, arms, and ammunition. Whereon Sir Harry moralises in the following strain: "Thus is again recorded in history another instance of the danger to be apprehended from arming men from hostile populations." And, with this sentiment in his mouth, Sir Harry Smith proceeded forthwith to order the Governor of Natal to arm and lead into the field, against the Amagaika, 3,000 warriors of the hostile population of the Amazoolah. To return, however, to my narrative, the "perfect tranquillity" which Sir Harry Smith described in his despatch of the 26th of November, did not continue long. On the 5th of December he wrote:— My dear Lord Grey—The quiet I have reported in Kaffirland, and which I had so much and so just grounds to anticipate, is not realised. I start this evening. The moment I reach King William's Town you shall hear from me. Accordingly, on the 12th of December he wrote again, and assured Lord Grey that "he perceived little or no difficulty in restoring tranquillity." Lord Grey was delighted at receiving this despatch, for in reply he wrote how "glad he was to learn that all immediate danger of an outbreak was at an end." Unhappy Lord Grey! This letter was written on the 5th of March: the next day he received intelligence that the outbreak had commenced with fearful violence. It is evident, therefore, that the two persons who ought to have been pre-eminently well informed on these matters were pre-eminently ignorant. One (Sir Harry Smith) was either stone-blind to all that was going on around him, or this outbreak has been caused by his mismanagement. The other (Lord Grey) reposed blind confidence in the wisdom of Sir Harry Smith's arrangements. The next and last despatch to which I shall refer, displays, in the highest degree, the blindness of Sir Harry Smith. It is dated the 20th of December last, four days before the commencement of the war. It begins with an account of a meeting between the T'Slambie tribes (who dwell in the neighbourhood of King William's Town) and Sir II. Smith. He stated that the conduct of the chiefs and the feeling of the assembled people were all that he could possibly desire. The chiefs expressed their determination to adhere faithfully to the present order of things, and to obey Her Majesty. According to the last accounts, they have fought against our troops, and intercepted the communications with King William's Town. In the same despatch, Sir Harry stated that he had received accounts of a very improved character as regards the conduct of the Tambookie chiefs, and he looked forward with every confidence to being able to restore general harmony and tranquillity. These are the chiefs about whom Sir Andries Stockenstrom entertained such gloomy forebodings. According to the last accounts, they have, as I have already said, attacked our frontier, carried off a quantity of cattle, committed a long list of murders, and, I am afraid, Cradock is in I great danger from them. Next, Sir Harry I was sorry to inform Lord Grey that the majority of the farmers on the frontier had abandoned their homes, and removed far into the interior." "His advice and influence had been exerted to induce' them to remain," but, "unfortunately they had disregarded his counsel. Most fortunate it was for them that they did disregard his counsel—that his advice had no weight nor influence with them—that they did abandon their homes and move far into the interior; for if they had believed in Sir H. Smith, most of them would have been slaughtered. In the same 'despatch he stated that he was happy to bring under Lord Grey's notice the good: and loyal feelings which prevailed among the colonists. According to the Colonial Secretary, they have displayed the most dogged inactivity, and cannot be induced to I move to Sir H. Smith's assistance. Lastly,; in this same despatch, Sir Harry describes his great meeting with the Gaika tribes, on the 19th of December last, at which 3,000 Kaffirs were present. According to Sir Harry, the meeting went off in the I most satisfactory and gratifying manner. He informed Lord Grey that it was evident that "Sandilli and other Gaika chiefs had endeavoured to excite the people against the present rule—that they had signally failed—that the people saw the: advantages they derived from the present state of things"—that they were tranquil, contented, and happy—that he anticipated 'that his system would be perpetuated—and he declared that he had "every confidence in the prospect before them." Four days after this despatch was written, r the Gaikas rose in arms, defeated Colonel Mackinnon, then surrounded Sir H. Smith in Fort Cox, and then repulsed Colonel I Somerset when he attempted to open communications with Sir Harry.

Sir, I ask what made the Gaikas rise in arms? I have said it already—it was the attempt to capture Sandilli. Now, one word with regard to Sandilli, who is unfortunately too well known to us. He is of the purest Kaffir blood. Son of the great Gaika by a wife of the sacred race of the Amatembu, he is ninth in descent from the conqueror Togul. The Kaffir war, which began in 1846, was rekindled in 1847, in consequence of a dispute between him and Sir H. Pottinger. That dispute arose about thirteen or fourteen goats which had strayed, or had been stolen, from the colony. Sir H. Pottinger ordered Sandilli to restore them, and to give up the thief. Sandilli did restore twelve goats, but declared he knew nothing about the remainder, nor about the thief, if there was one. Sir H. Pottinger was not satisfied. He sent a secret expedition to capture Sandilli. The Kaffirs rose in his defence, and the expedition failed. According to Sir H. Smith, "in this bit of a brush with Sandilli 56,000l. were spent on waggon hire alone." This fact will give the House some faint idea of the probable expense of a contest with Sandilli. Sir H. Smith, soon after his arrival in the colony, assembled the Kaffirs at King William's Town. At these meetings, which took place in December, 1847, and January 1848, Sir Harry Smith pretended to depose Sandilli from the rank of Great Chief, and to appoint himself the Inkosi Inkulu of the Kaffirs. He did so with the strangest ceremonies. He described to Lord Grey his proceedings on one occasion in the following words:— The Kaffirs being arranged in a circle, I rode into the midst of them, bearing in my right hand a sergeant's halbert, well sharpened, the emblem of war; in my left hand a magic wand, my baton of peace and authority, surmounted with a brass knob. I directed each chief to come forward, and touch whichever he pleased—it was immaterial to me. They all touched the symbol of peace; then each chief kissed my foot, exclaiming 'Inkosi Inkulu.' I then shook hands with each, never having done so before. Three cheers were given; and thus I commenced the foundation of their social condition. At another meeting he made the Kaffir chiefs swear "to obey his commands," "to disbelieve in witchcraft," "not to buy wives," and every year to give a fat ox to Her Majesty. On the same occasion he treated the Kaffirs to a little conjuring. He had a waggon stationed on an eminence at a considerable distance, with no one whatsoever near it. "Now," said Sir Harry to the Kaffirs—I quote his own words— you dare to make war! You dare to attack our waggons See what I will do if you ever dare to touch a waggon or the oxen belonging to it! Do you see that waggon, I say? Now, hear my word—Fire! (The waggon is blown up.) Ah do you see the waggon now? And you would, and shall, be blown up with it if you ever again attempt to touch another. So be good, and believe in your father. Sir Harry said, that the astonishment of the Kaffirs at this trick was excessive, and so ought to have been Lord Grey's when he read it. Sir Harry also harangued the Kaffirs in speeches full of bombast and rhodomontade, with a mixture of religion, or rather of blasphemy, beginning with a curse and ending with a prayer, much after the fashion of a mock oration of a trooper of Cromwell. Thus, by alternately coaxing and threatening the Kaffirs, by alternately praising and reviling them, by playing up all manner of fantastic and mountebank tricks, by aping the manners of the savage, Sir Harry thought to civilise the Kaffirs and to impose upon them; but the Kaffirs laughed at him, turned him into ridicule, and imposed upon him. At the great meeting of the 19th of December last, Sir Harry acted a somewhat similar farce. According to the reports of the colonial newspaper he denounced Sandilli as a rebel and an outlaw, and offered a reward of 500l. for his capture; the Gaika chiefs remonstrated, and entreated him to show mercy to Sandilli. Sir Harry declared that he could not do so, for if he were to show mercy to Sandilli, the great Queen of England would cut off his (Sir Harry's) head, and that he would not lose his head for such a rebel as Sandilli. The next day Sir Harry proclaimed a successor to Sandilli, and wrote to Lord Grey that he had every confidence in the prospect before us; two days afterwards, in a postscript to the same despatch, he assured Lord Grey that the best feeling pervaded the Kaffirs, and that the Gaikas were much pleased with his conduct. Finally, on the 24th, finding that no Kaffir would betray his chief even for the enormous reward of 500l., Sir Harry sent Colonel Mackinnon with a force of 587 men to capture Sandilli; that expedition failed, as a similar one had failed in 1847; the Gaikas rose in defence of their chief; they attacked our troops in a narrow defile, from which our troops were with difficulty extricated, with serious loss. Then the Kaffirs destroyed the military villages on the frontier, slaughtering the inhabitants;, next they surrounded, and nearly captured, Sir H. Smith in Fort Cox, owing to which accidental circumstance (to use the strange language of the hon. Gentleman the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies) Sir H. Smith was for several days prevented from communcicating with the colony. Next, the Kaffirs repulsed Colonel Somerset in his attempt to open communications with Fort Cox. Finally, Sir H. Smith escaped, and on the 31st of December reached King William's-town. Immedi- ately he issued a proclamation, calling upon the colonists to rise en masse, destroy and exterminate the barbarous savages, and promising the colonists unlimited license to plunder. At the same time he sent post haste to Natal for the assistance of 3,000 Zoolahs. According to the latest accounts, though the Kaffirs have been defeated in their attacks upon some of our forts, they have committed great ravages. Not only have the Gaikas attacked us, but the T'Slambies have intercepted our communications with King William's-town; the Tambookios have assailed us on the north; the Kaffir police have deserted; the Kat River Hottentots have rebelled; the Boers are doggedly inactive; disaffection prevails amongst the coloured classes on the frontier, who were our best allies in the last war; and throughout the whole of the eastern provinces martial law has been proclaimed.

Sir, I fear much that a serious war has commenced, and that it will be a costly one. I have seen in the colonial newspapers an official notice, calling upon all ablebodied men to enrol, offering them a bounty of 2l. for six months' service, with the ominous promise of an additional bounty of 1l. for every additional three months' service. These men are to have 6d. a day pay, with arms, clothing, and accoutrements, and rations for themselves and families. I do not doubt that all this is necessary, yet I read this notice with great alarm. For I remembered the vast sums which had been expended during the last war on rations, the fraud and peculation which had attended their distribution, the impossibility of the Imperial Government to control the expenditure on account of them. I remembered the statement of Sir H. Pottinger, that a few persons on the Kat River had, on the plea of defending the frontier, been receiving rations at the rate of 21,000l. a year, and that a number of Kaffirs, while fighting against us, had been receiving rations from us. I read this notice, therefore, with great alarm, and thought what we should have to pay. For pay we must; because Sir H. Smith and Lord Grey are responsible for this war. It has broken out in their own peculiar kingdom of British Kaffraria, which is no part nor portion of the colony of the Capo of Good Hope. It is the consequence of the encroachments which they have sanctioned, of their ignorance of the feelings of the Kaffirs, and of their frontier system of perpetual and vexatious interfe- rence in the affairs of the frontier tribes.: That frontier system has completely failed, and Sir Harry Smith, in despair, declares, that "what is ultimately to be done with these barbarians remains a problem."

The last question is, what steps ought I to be taken to relieve this country from any expense on account of future wars with the Kaffirs? It is clear that, first, we must defeat the Kaffirs and reduce them to subjection, and pay for so doing. What should we then do I Adhere to the present system of defending the frontier by troops at the expense of this country? In 1848 I presumed to warn the House, that under that system, we should have a Kaffir war every three or four years, with a long bill to pay for it; that there was only one way to save our pockets, and that was to give to the colonists of the Cape of Good Hope the freest institutions, and the uncontrolled management of their local affairs, and especially of their relations with the savage tribes on the frontier. Then we should make them distinctly understand that they must, like the men of our old North American plantations, defend themselves against the savage, and pay the expense of so doing; and, finally, we should withdraw our troops from the frontier, and only retain a garrison in the military station of Cape Town. If the House will not sanction these measures, we must make up our minds to pay roundly—there will be no use in grumbling. We shall have to pay at least from 600,000l. to 700,000l. a year for the Cape of Good Hope—a sum exceeding our exports to it. Now, I say that the Cape of Good Hope is not worth that sum of money. The only portion of it which is worth anything is a narrow slip of land between barren mountains on one side, and a harbourless sea on the other, the rest being as barren a desert as any on the face of the earth. With free institutions, and the management of their own affairs, I believe the colonists of the Cape of Good Hope would be slow in embroiling themselves with the savage, and when necessary they would be quite able to defend themselves. A short time ago, they bid defiance to the might of England, and threatened to resist by force of arms any attempt to land convicts on their shores; let them display similar energy and self-reliance in their wars with the Kaffirs, and they will be more than a match for Sandilli and all his followers.

I have now concluded my observations with regard to the military expenditure of Great Britain on account of the colonies, which are neither military stations nor convict settlements. I have attempted to prove that no troops ought to be maintained at our expense, in any one of those colonies, after it has obtained free institutions, except for strictly imperial purposes; and that it is not just to call upon the people of this country to defray out of their taxes any portion of the expense of the troops required for local purposes. I have endeavoured to show that by applying these principles to our North American colonies and West Indian plantations, a considerable reduction might immediately be made in the amount of force which we maintain in these colonies, with an ultimate reduction in our effective military expenditure on account of them to the amount of about 650,000l. a year. I have also attempted to show, that if we were to give self-government to our colonists in New Zealand and South Africa, a very considerable reduction might ultimately be made in the amount of force which we maintain in these colonies, with an ultimate saving to this country of about 550,000l. a year, in effective military expenditure. Therefore, the total saving which I now propose for the consideration of the House, would amount to about 1,200,000l. a year in effective expenditure; if to this sum be added a proportionate amount of the dead weight, the whole saving would in course of time amount to about 1,600,000l. a year. If my views with regard to military stations be correct, and were to be acted upon, then a much larger reduction than that which I have mentioned might be made in our Colonial military expenditure.

I have still to mention the civil expenditure of this country on account of the colonies. On this subject I have very little to say; for it is evident that the principles which I have laid down with regard to colonial military expenditure are equally applicable to colonial civil expenditure; and if they are correct, it follows that whenever a colony which is neither a military station nor a convict settlement has representative institutions, all civil expenses for local purposes ought to be paid by the colony, while all civil expenses for imperial purposes ought to be paid by the united kingdoms. In 1846–47 our colonial civil expenditure was 500,000l. Of this sum about 300,000l. were for the clothing, maintenance, and transport of convicts; and 70,000l. were expended on the military stations; these two sums, therefore, were required for imperial purposes, and it was proper that this country should pay them. Of the remaining 130,000l., 11,000l. were paid to the North American clergy—that charge will cease with the lives of the present clergy; 14,000l. were paid in the shape of presents to the Indian tribes in Canada; about 80,000l. were spent in the West Indies in salaries to clergymen, stipendiary magistrates, and governors; and, lastly, about 20,000l. were spent in New Zealand. It appears to me that the whole of this sum of 130,000l. ought, according to my principles, to be ultimately saved, with the exception of the sum required for the salaries of colonial governors; for, in my opinion, as long as colonial governors are appointed by the imperial Government, they should be looked upon as imperial officers, and, therefore, their salaries should be paid by the united kingdoms.

In concluding my observations on our colonial expenditure, I must remark, that in every colony there are many persons who have a strong sinister interest in the amount of imperial expenditure. These persons have made, or expect to make, large gains by contracts, jobs, and by the innumerable other other modes of robbing the mother country. They rejoice on every increase of imperial expenditure. To them a Kaffir or a Maori war, or a rebellion, is a godsend. I have heard on good authority that in the Canadian rebellion the enormous gains of these persons were equal to the losses of the rest of the community, and that they have been heard to toast the good old times of that rebellion, and the speedy commencement of the next. Sir H. Smith has stated in one of his despatches that during the last Kaffir war many persons amassed large sums of money; that the consequences were a redundancy of money at the Cape of Good Hope, with general prosperity, and a tendency to over-speculation. I have heard similar statements with regard to New Zealand. And it is self-evident, that, with an imperial expenditure many times greater than the local revenues of a colony, there must be a fine harvest for the jobbing and peculating tribe, and that noxious race must flourish and multiply. To this class, and it is not an uninfluential one in our modern colonies, any proposal for a reduction of imperial expenditure, is in the highest degree distasteful. Corrupted by that ex- penditure, they have not the feelings of self-reliance and self-respect, which, according to the just remark of Lord Grey, our old colonies displayed in their conflicts with the Indians, and even with the might of France. Many of these unworthy Anglo-Saxons would, in their hearts, prefer Colonial Office despotism, with huge imperial expenditure, to the freest institutions with imperial economy. We are to blame for this degeneracy, which every high-minded and every high-minded colonist deplores. We are to blame for having departed from our old colonial polity, and demoralised our colonial children by our waste and extravagance. The sooner we return to the old polity the better for them morally, for us pecuniarily; their character will be elevated and ennobled by becoming self-reliant, and obtaining self-government; and our money will be saved by bestowing upon them the freest institutions, and strictly enforcing the maxim—no imperial expenditure for local purposes. That maxim is the sum and substance of my first resolution. These resolutions express my idea of the true colonial policy of Great Britain, which is self-government for true colonies, and no imperial expenditure except for military stations. With that policy the more true colonies we have, and the fewer military stations we have need of, the richer and more powerful the British empire will be. I move these Resolutions in no hostile spirit to the Government, but, on the contrary, to encourage them to pursue boldly and vigorously the policy which they have commenced on the continent of Australia. I ask them to assent to this Motion. I ask all hon. Members to support it who wish to reduce the national expenditure; for if there be any portion of that expenditure in which a considerable reduction can be made without injury to the empire, that portion is our colonial expenditure; and that expenditure can only be reduced by acting in conformity with the principles contained in the Resolutions which I now beg leave to move.

Motion made, and Question proposed— 1. That it is the opinion of this House, that steps should be taken to relieve this Country, as speedily as possible, from its present Civil and Military Expenditure on account of the Colonies, with the exception of its expenditure on account of Military Stations or Convict Settlements. 2. That it is expedient at the same time to give to the inhabitants of the Colonies which are neither Military Stations nor Convict Settlements ample powers for their local self-government, and to free them from that Imperial interference with their affairs which is inseparable from their present military occupation.


seconded the Motion. Although he had a Motion on the paper of very great importance, he was glad he had given way to the hon. Baronet, who, by the proposition which he had submitted to the House, had struck a blow at departmental government in this country; and if he did not succeed in obtaining a vote in his favour from the House, he had, at all events, prepared the feeling of the country upon the subject, which would in a very short time compel hon. Members to accept his proposition as the only means of retaining the favour of their constituents. The hon. Baronet had excluded from his scheme our military and convict stations; but he (Mr. Urquhart) considered these most important items, when discussing the question of our military and colonial expenditure. England, in her proud position as leader of the opinion of the world, and in the inviolable position which she maintained, ought to show the first example of disarmament. Europe was groaning under the load of establishments. All the evils of war were permanently inflicted upon the people by the very means which they were taking to preserve peace and prevent war. Before this mania had taken root, one of the ablest constitutional philosophers, Montesquieu, had prognosticated its result: he said that every State in Europe would sink beneath the weight of its own establishments. The best support which he (Mr. Urquhart) could give to this Motion would be to offer one or two considerations which went beyond it. The hon. Baronet stated that the strength of the country abroad depended upon the judiciousness of the selection of its military and naval establishments, and he laid down certain maxims by which their choice should lie guided. They were to be in places of general resort, to be easy of defence, to be capable of furnishing accommodation to our fleets, as well as points of attack. The first of these places, he stated, as furnishing all these advantages, was Gibraltar. Now he (Mr. Urquhart) thought that this very colony afforded an opportunity of judging of the injudiciousness of the whole of their colonial arrangements, and the enormity of their expenditure without any reason. Gibraltar had cost this country a very large sum of money during the hundred and fifty years which they had held it—scarcely less than 250,000l. per annum; and if they were to estimate the expenditure they had already incurred, and add thereto the capital represented by the annual charge, they would have a sum of nearly 100,000,000l. That money was entirely thrown away. Instead of Gibraltar furnishing us with those requisites laid down as necessary for a military colony, it afforded us no place for defence for our fleet, scarcely any for its reparation, and none for its provision; besides, it did not afford the means of attacking an enemy. Instead of being the key of the Mediterranean sea, and preventing it from becoming a French lake, and giving them a security over Spain, it rendered Spain the natural and inevitable enemy of England, whenever Spain was not in the necessity of falling back upon England by reason of hostility elsewhere. Gibraltar gave us no more the command of the Mediterranean, because it was placed at its entrance, than it gave us the command of the Atlantic by being placed upon its side. Napoleon said—"Gibraltar opens nothing, shuts nothing, and secures to France the undying hatred of Spain towards England." And this was the place upon which they were prepared to squander the eighth part of the national debt, instead of placing it in Schedule A, and which was considered so valuable that a reforming Member did not propose to touch it. He thought that no stronger case could be made out for inquiry than that which Gibraltar afforded. Gibraltar had no port to receive their ships. It was exposed to the batteries of Spain, and in case of war, they would have either to withdraw their vessels or sink them. In the last war, when Gibraltar was the scene of it, we had to withdraw our vessels from that place, there being no means there of protecting them. In the report of the Committee upon the civil and ordnance expenditure, the baking establishment appeared to have been repeatedly called on for sudden exertions to supply bread and biscuits; and there they had the revelations of the apprehensions of the Government, which were veiled in that House under a placid veil of unbroken security. Fourteen times in fourteen years the baker of the Government had been in hurry and alarm; in fourteen years we had had fourteen panics from dread of war, or insurrection in our colonies. One of these fears Gibraltar had brought upon us, showing another danger connected with colonial mismanagement, and that was by allowing the intermeddling of the Foreign department. In 1844 the bread and biscuit were required through apprehension of a war with France, produced solely by the interference of the Governor of Gibraltar in the affairs of Morocco. This post furnished the point of junction of the two evil systems, and the virus of the Foreign department was infused into that of the Colonial. He (Mr. Urquhart) then entered into the internal administration of the place, showing that faith had been broken with the merchants, on the plea of making it an exclusively military establishment; he then proceeded to Malta, which, he admitted, seemed formed by nature for possession by such a naval Power as that of Britain. But there also the maleficent influence of the Foreign department was visible. After having excited all Italy to revolution, the chief governor, Mr. More O'Ferrall, denied all hospitality to the refugees who sought safety upon those shores. Go further, and look at the Ionian islands, and there also they would find the evils of one department interwoven with the other. They had their Governor throwing out visionary schemes, and these schemes were to assail the integrity of an empire which it had been their firmest policy to sustain. In fact, Malta and the Ionian islands had been allowed to become the foci of all the discontent of the South of Europe. When it was imagined that our colonial empire could not exist without a colonial department, his answer was, that the colonial department did not make the empire of Great Britain, and that the history of the progress of that department was in the inverse ratio to our colonial empire. The colonies grew under the system of free institutions, with the responsibility and burdens of their own government when left entirely to themselves. This Motion for economising the money of the country would, if carried, also economise the affections and loyalty of their colonial subjects, and would prevent the colonies from becoming the subordinate instruments of the Foreign department. He wondered that the noble Lord at the head of the Government whose past career had been spent in the correction of abuses, could not find a greater glory in putting an end to this system, which balanced the empire with despotism on one side and insurrection on the other, than in putting down a few rotten boroughs, which had furnished that House with some of their greatest lights and noblest ornaments. Of one thing, however, he was certain, namely, that if the Parliament did not put down the Colo- nial department, the Colonial department would put down the colonial empire of Great Britain.


said, he must request the indulgence of the House while he endeavoured to offer some reply to the I able and eloquent speech of his hon. Friend the Member for Southwark—a speech which exhibited the usual ability and research of the hon. Baronet—and replete as it was with details of great; interest and importance. Such a speech deserved the attention of the House, and he could assure his hon. Friend that he (Mr. Hawes) had listened to the whole of it with the deepest interest. It was impossible for him altogether to dissent from many of the arguments of the hon. Baronet with reference to our colonial Government; but, on the other hand, he was bound to say that, looking at the speech rather as indicating the policy which his hon. Friend desired this country to adopt, than at the Motion which it introduced, he was compelled to say that he thought such a policy as he indicated would be deeply injurious to this country, would endanger its best in forests, and impair one of the noblest privileges it ever was the good fortune of a country to possess, that of directing the policy and advancing the prosperity of our present colonial empire. The hon. Baronet had based nearly all his arguments upon pecuniary considerations. Having ascertained what were the convict stations and the military stations, which he altogether excluded from his observations on the present occasion, the hon. Baronet had advised the House deliberately to abandon those Colonies which we now possess in which there wore military establishments, and upon which there was any military expenditure; for the withdrawal of our troops was a practical declaration of such a policy. Now, was the House prepared to take such a step as that? And upon what grounds did the hon. Baronet rest the policy which he recommended the House to adopt? He (Mr. Hawes) would again repeat that he could discover none beyond those which were of a pecuniary character; and even upon these grounds he (Mr. Hawes) could not assent to the conclusions to which the hon. Baronet had come. It might be that we were too poor to hold our own, and that we had fallen from our high estate; but this he must say, that the voluntary abandonment of such an empire as was our colonial empire, consisting of such vast possessions, so fertile, so various in its resources, and affording such a multitude of friendly ports in every quarter of the globe—the voluntary abandonment of such an empire as that, would be a sacrifice unparalleled in the history of the world. The hon. Baronet had gone at considerable length into the system of our colonial expenditure. He (Mr. Hawes) did not believe that the items now referred to by the hon. Baronet were the same as those he had referred to on a former occasion. Perhaps the hon. Baronet, on inquiry, had found that his former calculations of expenditure required to be materially amended; and the observation justified him (Mr. Hawes) in saying that it was impossible to make an off-hand reply to details of the description stated that evening by the hon. Baronet. Before we could arrive at anything like a correct result of our colonial expenditure, it would be necessary to examine it carefully. He had ventured, he believed, on a former occasion, to express his opinion that the hon. Baronet had greatly overstated it. Professedly he now excluded our military and convict stations; but it was not always quite easy to draw a distinction. Take the Cape, for instance; it was a military station of the highest importance to our colonial empire; and Mauritius, which was valuable in a military point of view, from its proximity to our possessions in India, and its command of the Indian seas; but it was also most valuable for its trade, seeing that it exported to this country 60,000 or 70,000 tons of sugar annually. For these reasons he did not think that the distinction drawn between military stations and other colonies had been clearly made out. Then, as to the expense. His hon. Friend the Member for Northampton had obtained a return of the gross military expenditure of our colonies for five years, on dividing which it would be found that the annual expense was 1,948,471l. Well, following the course of the hon. Baronet, he might deduct from that the cost of our military stations, because the hon. Baronet did not propose now to reduce our expenditure in these possessions. He wished to guard himself from being supposed to defend our present establishments, or to say that they were incapable of being reduced. It was sufficient for him, for the purpose of meeting the arguments which the hon. Baronet had advanced that evening, to assume that the present military expendi- ture was such as was necessary for the preservation of our empire at large. It might be capable of reduction. He hoped it might; and, therefore, he begged again not to be understood as saying that it was incapable of reduction, or to defend in all cases the existing establishments. In fact, the papers he had laid upon the table of the House the day before showed that a very considerable reduction might probably be effected in the colonies of North America. The cost of our military stations was 502,000l., and of the military cost of our convict establishments 71,000l.; which, deducted from the gross sum referred to, gave about the sum over which the hon. Baronet proposed to exercise control. The hon. Baronet had implied that the decisive course of policy which he wished to see adopted, should be adopted as speedily as possible; and if his Motion were carried, the Government would feel themselves bound at once to commence making reductions. Now, let him call the attention of the House for a moment to those Colonies which, not being military or convict stations, would undoubtedly, according to the proposal of his hon. Friend, have to be altogether abandoned by this country. The words of the Motion were very clear and explicit, as follows:— That it is the opinion of this House that steps should be taken to relieve this country, as speedily as possible, from its present civil and military expenditure on account of the Colonies, with the exception of its expenditure on account of military stations or convict settlements. That it is expedient at the same time to give to the inhabitants of the Colonies, which are neither military stations nor convict settlements, ample powers for their local self-government, and to free them from that imperial interference with their affairs which is inseparable from their present military occupation. It followed, he thought, that all those Colonies which were not convict or military stations, and which now had any portion of the forces of the empire within their boundaries, would have to be abandoned by this country, for he could not but regard the entire withdrawal of the military as the future abandonment of these colonies. Let the House contemplate that proposal. He thought his hon. Friend had been led, in the course of his speech, to dwell too much on details, and that he had been prevented from giving a due attention to the consequences of the policy he had recommended to the consideration of the House. It was his (Mr. Hawes's) duty to endeavour to show that the consequences of adopting the policy indicated by the hon. Baronet's Motion, would be such as, he thought, would appal the country. What were the Colonies we should have to abandon? He must call it abandonment; because, if they were to have local self-government, and to be freed from imperial interference, it would amount to separation from the mother country—no other tie would be left beyond that of our commercial intercourse with them. Another Power might then bid for them, we not thinking it expedient to pay the necessary price; and, therefore, the result of the hon. Gentleman's policy would undoubtedly be—and it was no exaggeration to say so—the abandonment of by far the greater portion of our colonial empire. He believed that neither the statesmen nor the merchants or traders of this country were prepared to take such a step as that. Why, it was only that very day that the noble Lord at the head of the Government had presented a petition from almost every merchant connected with the Cape of Good Hope, praying for the assistance of this country in the war in which the military there were engaged with the Kaffirs. If the requested aid were not afforded, that colony would soon offer itself to the protection of any strong Power which might propose the most favourable terms; and no doubt that would be the case in every instance in which the peace of every other British colony was disturbed. Must we surrender our West India Colonies? Jamaica, Trinidad, and Barbadoes, and the West India Islands? Must we surrender Australia and New Zealand? Were all these Colonies to be left to float on the world, for any Power strong enough and willing to take them? And there were Powers possessing the pecuniary means that would covet them, and no long period would elapse before they passed into possession of some other empire. If he made the necessary deductions from the sum he had stated as the total cost of our military expenditure—if even he added a large sum for extraordinary expenses—which the hon. Baronet had referred to, and if he included the estimates voted every year in that House, he made the total sum we expended on the civil and military government of our colonies, 2,328,000l.; and then, deducting the convict and military stations from that, he found that the sum which the hon. Baronet would strike out was 1,697,000l. The hon. Baronet had referred to our naval expenditure. [Sir W. MOLESWORTH: No!] He hoped that, as that point had been omitted in the speech on the present occasion, the hon. Baronet agreed with him that the naval expenditure of this country was not to be considered as simply colonial. He was aware that high authorities had stated that our naval expenditure was justified by reason of the extent of our colonial dominions. The colonial empire furnished one large portion of the trade and commerce of England; and our naval force was used, not for this or that colonial purpose, not certainly for any internal colonial purpose, but it was used, and used exclusively, for the general security of the empire and of its commerce. But the hon. Baronet went on to say—and to this he (Mr. Hawes) wished to call the special attention of the House—that if we granted the colonies local self-government, and freed them from imperial control, we might then safely withdraw our military forces, for that then the colonies would themselves undertake their own defence, and that that defence might be safely left in their own hands. Now he (Mr. Hawes) altogether dissented from that view. He did not see the connexion between the concession of local self-government, and freedom from imperial control, and the withdrawal of our military force. He could point to instances in which the largest powers of self-government were possessed by a colony, and yet in which there was a large military force; and he could also point to a colony governed, as it was called, by the Colonial Office, and in which there was a small force. Let him take the case of Jamaica. Jamaica enjoyed the fullest powers of self-government, and yet it had a force of 1,400 men. Trinidad had no such powers, and yet it had a force of only 400 men. Now, if local self-government constituted a ground for withdrawing military force from a colony, Jamaica ought to have no force at all. But the fact was, there was no connexion between local self-government and freedom from imperial control, and the absence of a military force, for any hon. Member might run through the colonies and see at once that in colonies possessing full powers of local self-government there was a large force, and in others possessing no powers of self-government whatever there was a small one. Nova Scotia and New Brunswick were instances in point. Nova Scotia had local self-government, but a large force was stationed there—New Brunswick had also local self-government, but a very small military force. Let New Zealand be compared with South Australia. In the former there was a force of only 1,500 men; in South Australia there were but about sixty soldiers. Both were without local self-government at the present moment. The inference, therefore, was, that the presence of an armed force in a colony was altogether distinct and separate from any amount of self-government. He questioned, then, whether the mother country would save much by adopting the course his hon. Friend had suggested. For, what did the hon. Baronet propose? He said—"Take the case of the Cape; grant them local self-government; do not interfere with them; and, if a war break out, give them a large sum of money." [Sir W. MOLES-worth: No; not at all.] He did not wish to misrepresent, but he certainly thought the hon. Baronet seemed to anticipate a contingency in which we could not shake off our connexion with the colonies, in which we could not separate our commercial interests, and the interests of British subjects here, from British subjects in the colonies; and that if we pursued the course he recommended, the time would come when we should have to answer the question whether we would assist them or not in the difficulties in which they were placed; and he believed—and in which he thought the hon. Baronet concurred—that in such a case the House would be inclined to assist them. Now, supposing for a moment that the course recommended by the hon. Baronet were adopted, what would result? Of course, it was assumed that then our intercourse with the colonies would be as large and as beneficial as it was at present; but, in assuming that, he must be permitted to say that the hon. Baronet had altogether entered the region of speculation and conjecture, and had thrown over the light of experience. For, what was our experience of colonies which were once under the British Crown, and were now free? Take the United States of America. Every British merchant trading with the United States had to encounter a protective tariff of 25 per cent; whereas our colonial possessions offered a friendly port in every quarter of the globe, with a tariff based on fair and equal principles as regarded colony and colony and the mother country. Now, this was a very important consideration, because, in the altered state of circumstances proposed by the hon. Ba- ronet, the colonies would probably alter their policy in respect to our commerce; and our trade with many of the colonies might, to some extent, be interfered with. We should either have a diminished trade with them, or there would be increased taxation imposed in the colony for the protection of some local interests; and hence diminished consumption and trade, even though we might get rid of the expenditure which it was the object of the hon. Baronet to reduce. But it was not on these grounds alone that he was induced to oppose the Motion. And here he might be permitted perhaps to notice what had been said about the Cape of Good Hope. When we took possession of that colony it consisted of several races, and it extended 400 miles inland; and we took it with the obligation, which we could not shake off, to protect that population. As little could we shake off from ourselves the obligation to protect the coloured population in our other Colonies. Well, we had taken possession of this colony, and largely introduced emigrants into it. The white population bore a very small proportion to the coloured population; under such circumstances, we could not withdraw the imperial control without perilling the internal peace and welfare of the colony; and his observations applied not only to the Cape of Good Hope, but to every other colony where there was a large population of coloured and native races compared with the white population. He considered, therefore, that the Cape of Good Hope did not afford an instance in which we could throw off the obligation we had contracted when we took possession of the colony. He would now refer to the observations upon our frontier policy at the Cape of Good Hope. Perhaps the hon. Baronet would allow him to ask what he understood to he the frontier policy? On that point the hon. Baronet had been significantly silent, and he was not surprised at that, because the case was one of extreme difficulty; and especially as we could not throw off the obligations we had contracted when we took possession of the colony, he thought the hon. Baronet pursued a discreet course in saying nothing on this subject. But the hon. Baronet cast considerable ridicule on what he described as the extension of our empire in South Africa—an extension to which Her Majesty's Government was as much opposed as the hon. Baronet. Now, it was important to know what had teen the recommendations of preceding go- vernors at the Cape. Net a single governor of eminence did he (Mr. Hawes) know who ruled over the Cape Colony who did not recommend comprehensively or in detail the policy which had been pursued by Sir Harry Smith. It was the policy recommended by Sir Benjamin d'Urban, and all succeeding governors. He was quite ready to admit that if a sudden outbreak, on the part of an uncivilised population was deemed to prove the failure of a policy, of course at any one moment that or any policy might fail; but he denied that would be a just or proper conclusion. Having stated that when we took possession of the Cape of Good Hope we became possessed of a large tract of land, extending 400 miles inland, he would recall their attention to the fact, that in 1820 the House voted a large sum of money in order to send out emigrants to cultivate the colony; and among those who were most prominent in recommending that measure to the attention of the House, was the hon. Member for Montrose, who only regretted that the Government had not gone further and increased the number. Well, we planted men on the frontier of the colony, and we thereby incurred an obligation to protect them. When the Dutch had the colony, and some time afterwards, the frontier policy pursued, was this—that the Dutch residents on the frontier were allowed to call out a militia whenever they pleased, declare war at their pleasure, and exercise all the rights of war, however bloody might be the transactions in which it involved them. That was the system which they adopted in defence of the frontier, and that was the system which England indignantly rejected, and said she would not permit to exist a moment longer. We then resorted to another course, and determined that a military force should take the place of these volunteers, that the frontier should be extended to the Great Fish River, and that the area thus included should be considered a neutral as it was a ceded territory. That was the policy substantially which Sir Benjamin d'Urban, Sir Henry Pottinger, and Sir Harry Smith, adopted and recommended;—and when he mentioned the name of Sir Henry Pottinger, he could not help saying that he was a most invaluable governor during the short time he stayed at the Cape, and it was to he deeply regretted that he stayed so short a time, because he exposed many abuses in the administration, and his authority was deservedly high on every question connected with the native tribes and population. It was thought necessary now that British Kaffraria should be placed under British authority, and as far as practicable without interfering with the power, or even the prejudices, of the native population, but in order that there might be an armed power on the spot to keep the peace, decide disputes, and prevent that invasion of the colony which led to such destruction and bloodshed on many former occasions; and any one who had read the accounts in the newspapers with regard to the disturbances in Kaffraria would have seen that the career of devastation might have been checked, by that policy, had it not been for one unfortunate circumstance to which he would allude shortly. It had been said that the Governor was taken by surprise—that he had represented the colony to be in a most satisfactory state—and that Earl Grey had written back despatches congratulating him on the peace and prosperity which prevailed. Now, he did not deny that Sir Harry Smith and some of the remarkably able men who were under him—men well acquainted with the character of the Kaffirs—were not aware that they had collected arms and ammunition, and contemplated bloodshed, though he (Mr. Hawes) was not disposed to believe that they were as well organised as the accounts would lead them to think. But that the past policy pursued had not been wholly unsuccessful, was proved, as he had stated before, in the result, which was the prevention of those fierce irruptions into the colony, with the consequent great loss of life, which had attended every Kaffir outbreak hitherto. His hon. Friend had read a despatch, dated the 20th of December, from Sir Harry Smith to Earl Grey; but there was one paragraph in it which he had altogether overlooked. He (Mr. Hawes) did not accuse his hon. Friend of intentionally misleading the House; but it certainly was surprising, considering the inferences which he attempted to draw from the whole despatch, that so particular a portion of it, the effect of which was entirely to contradict the general assertions of his hon. Friend, should have been overlooked. This paragraph was to be found at page 64, paragraph 6, and was written just before the outbreak. It was as follows:— Notwithstanding, however, these pacific demonstrations and professions, I shall retain the troops for a time in their present position, in order that I may institute a searching inquiry, and until I am most fully satisfied that their removal is consistent with the general security and safety of the colony. Now, these words were altogether inconsistent with the statement that Sir H. Smith believed that peace was established, because he said, though he believed there was tranquillity, he would maintain the troops in their present position. That did not seem like the act of an over-sanguine man. Now, the interviews with Sir Harry Smith and the Kaffirs had been alluded to; and the House would perhaps here permit him to say, that he did not think it was fair to cast ridicule on the acts of an absent officer and Governor. He did not wish to blame his hon. Friend for anything Tie had said; but he could assure him that what was said in that House had a considerable effect in the Colonies, and he thought that hon. Members ought to speak on these subjects with a deeper sense than they generally evidenced of the responsibility attaching to them. His hon. Friend had proceeded after this in his address to speak of Natal. He stated that we there came into dangerous contact with fierce and bloody tribes; and he drew an alarming picture of the possible consequences to this country. Well, no doubt they were a bold and warlike tribe in and about that colony; and at present—this was the result—that colony was warmly in favour of Sir H. Smith: and surely the report of 3,000 men marching from thence to assist Sir H. Smith, presented a most remarkable picture of what had been effected in the colony. The colony of Natal, indeed, with its 100,000 natives under British jurisdiction, presented an instance of what might be done by wise and judicious management. Already the natives of that colony were affording the best possible demonstration of their appreciation of the arts of civilisation; and as one proof of their subjection to the Government, they paid their taxes readily, and he called the attention of his hon. Friend behind him to the circumstance that they were in favour of direct taxation, and actually paid a house tax, from which it would appear a fair revenue might be hoped for. His hon. Friend had also dilated upon the dangers which attended us at the Orange River settlements; and he stated that the Boers had been driven to form a settlement there, by being constantly oppressed and persecuted! by the Colonial Office. [Sir W. MOLES-WORTH: No, no!] His hon. Friend had, at any rate, represented these people as being the victims of oppression. This meant, then, the oppression of the colonial authorities; and of course, therefore, was a charge indirectly against the Colonial Office. For once, he (Mr. Hawes) would take the whole blame on the Colonial Office. The representation was, that these Boers were constantly being driven from place to place; and that they had no sooner settled down in one spot, than the English Government arrived and drove them still farther into the country. Now, the Boers, or Dutch farmers of the Cape, were a very remarkable body of men; and very peculiar circumstances had first alienated them from British jurisdiction. Originally they had the power in their own hands of organising the militia and making war. That was put an end to, and that gave rise to great dissatisfaction. Another of their complaints was with regard to the abolition of slavery. They contended that the compensation awarded to them had not been adequate, and that, generally, it was impossible for them to carry on agriculture without slaves. These were the two great causes which had alienated the Boers from the Government of the colony, and led them to emigrate to distant lands; and he utterly denied, therefore, that the Colonial Office had anything to do with that extraordinary movement of that extraordinary people. But they had now, in the Orange River sovereignty, a most economical Government; dependent far more upon the consent of the population than upon British force; and wherever this system had been introduced, and carried out wisely, it had always been successful, and ended in peace, security, and comparative tranquillity. It was so found in Natal, and amongst tribes under and contiguous to British dominion on the west coast of Africa. Well, they might talk of extension of territory, and say that it led the country into war and extravagant expenditure; but that was not the opinion of Sir B. d'Urban. That officer said, he proposed to extend the territorial jurisdiction of the Government, believing that thereon depended the security and peace of the colony; that, if they reversed his policy, they would soon have another Kaffir war; and his policy consisted in this, that they should defend the frontier—beyond the frontier taking proper military precautions to prevent masses of savage men rushing into the colony. There was one observation of the hon. Baronet which he thought ought to be cleared up. He had said that the coloured race at the Cape were disaffected and indifferent as to the maintenance of the Government. Now the hon. Baronet, he considered, had overlooked some most material facts. His remarks might have applied to some particular districts, and to some only; but if he had looked at the papers which were now in the hands of Members, he would have seen the extreme readiness, alacrity, and zeal with which a large voluntary force of between 1,200 and 1,600 men left Cape Town, at the very first moment they were wanted, to assist Sir H. Smith. It was quite true, unhappily, that some had shown a degree of indifference in this emergency; but this was very much owing to the agitation which had attended the convict question. He talked about the "proper indignation" of the people at the Cape, and about the "public spirit" with which they had resisted the attempts of the Government to make the Cape a penal colony. Now, the fact was, that there was not a man in the colony who did not know, from the very first, that there never had been the slightest intention to make the Cape a convict colony. There never had been a shadow of ground for such a belief; and nothing ever said or written from the Colonial Office had ever justified the statement that such a project had been entertained, The agitation was got up to obtain, certainly a false, but a cheap patriotism; and he thought that those who had taken the lead in that agitation would now lament the countenance they had unwisely lent it, on seeing the course pursued by the men whom they had taught to despise the authority and to shake the power of the Government, and who now, that the colony was in danger, refused to assist the authorities, and thus weakened the power of the Government in repelling the recent invasion of the Kaffirs. He had now gone through the points adverted to in the speech of his hon. Friend. Looking at that proposition as a whole, he could only consider it as amounting to this—that, for the sake of saving 1,200,000l. or 1,600,OOOl. a year, we should surrender our great colonial empire. His hon. Friend would repudiate that idea; but he would forgive him (Mr. Hawes) for insisting that there was no other legitimate conclusion from his arguments. The question, plainly put, was, whether or not this colonial empire was worth the 1,200,000l. a year. His hon. Friend referred the House to our exports, amounting annually to 60,000,000l.; and, on a former occasion, his lion. Friend had estimated that we had to pay (line shillings to the Colonies out of every pound sterling of our exports of British and Irish produce and manufactures. Hut this was altogether unfair. Our exports merely did not represent our entire colonial trade. The hon. Baronet had not taken into account the shipping, and had altogether left out of his calculation the accumulated profit and capital involved in the retention of our colonies. Still more strangely and unfairly the hon. Baronet had omitted to estimate the value of the intercolonial trade. To give the House a simple illustration of the false view which his hon. Friend took on this subject: If he took the expenditure, for Instance, of the Great Western Railway, or the London and Northwestern Railway, and found what that was so much per ton on goods sent from Euston Square or Paddington, if he took no notice of the tonnage which might come on to the line at other stations and termini, he should state a case precisely similar to that which the hon. Baronet had stated with regard to the colonial exports. It would show a charge upon this portion of the traffic ruinous to traders. Just so this charge of our whole colonial expenditure upon the value of British and Irish manufactures exported, upon a part only of our trade, led to an equally ruinous conclusion. That was precisely a case in point. He had now endeavoured to meet the leading and most prominent arguments put forth by his hon. Friend; and he could not help believing that the House was not prepared to follow the course of policy which he indicated. It was quite true, that with many of his observations he most entirely concurred. To what his hon. Friend urged in respect to economy, no objection whatever could be taken. The present Government, perfectly alive to the importance of this point, had reduced the colonial expenditure to the utmost possible extent; and this would be clearly made out by an examination of the papers recently in the hands of hon. Members. He could show the House, by a reference to these papers, that they had gradually reduced the estimates voted by the House, from the sum, if he recollected right, when they first came into office, of 226,000l., to an annual vote of 180,000l., This proved that there was no want of vigilance. Earl Grey had made a reduc- tion in the troops at New South Wales; and it would be seen from the papers that it was his intention to make a further reduction; and he could assure his hon. Friend, that, if a reasonable and practical 'reduction could be made, none would be more anxious to make it than Earl Grey. No one could more zealously watch over every branch of his Department, be more desirous of effecting a sound and wise economy, or be more anxious, vigilant, or able in regard to the great duties which were intrusted to him. He did trust that the House would not follow the views of the hon. Baronet. This was a very important occasion—it was one which should not be lost sight of, in order that the real and true value of the colonial empire we possess might not be overlooked. At the same time that he concurred with his hon. Friend in much that he had said—whilst he thanked him for the general spirit, tone, and moderation of his observations, and the kindness and candour with which he had spoken on subjects hitherto treated in a different way—he yet felt it his duty to move, on this occasion, the previous question, by way of Amendment to the Motion before the House. That was the only way in which he could show him that his Motion was met in a similar spirit, and would show that the Government were not indifferent to his recommendations or his suggestions; and, above all, that they were not indifferent to the reduction of the naval and military establishments of our Colonies.

Whereupon the previous Question was proposed, "That that Question be now put."


said that, in addressing himself to the question before the House, he would not be led away to other matters, though he must say that the lion. Gentleman who had just sat down had made a wonderful assertion about the late anti-convict struggle at the Cape—throwing all the blame of the irritation and disturbance caused by that question upon the colonists, and totally exonerating the Government. He was strongly tempted to make some reply; but at the present moment he would refrain, and confine himself strictly to the question that was before the House. The Motion of the hon. Baronet the Member for Southwark might indeed be greatly enforced, and had, he thought, been unanswerably illustrated, by the present circumstances of the Cape; yet there was a larger and more general question before them; and, therefore, he thought the question of the Cape might be reserved for the present, especially as the noble Lord at the head of the Government stood pledged to raise that question on a future occasion. The Motion before them was generally that the House should take immediate steps to reduce the civil and military expenditure of the Colonies, at the same time giving to the Colonies full powers of local self-government, that they might be able to protect themselves. The hon. Under Secretary for the Colonies met that proposition by saying that it was neither more nor less than a proposition for this country to abandon her Colonies. What he really fears is the abandonment of his colonial system, which abandonment is the only chance of retaining the colonies. The hon. Gentleman seemed to be quite staggered by the monstrosity of the proposition. Why, the hon. Gentleman must count upon none of them having read the papers which had been delivered to them that very morning. The Motion contemplated doing no more with the Colonies generally than the noble Lord himself proposed to do with Canada. What was the proposition—which he supposed had been a good deal quickened by the notice of the hon. Baronet appearing on the paper—what was the proposition submitted to Canada in a despatch of the noble Earl the Colonial Secretary, to the Earl of Elgin, dated be recently as the 14th of March last? It was that the troops should be withdrawn from Canada, leaving only a garrison in Quebec and Kingston; that the civil list, at the same time, should be handed over to the colonists; nothing, in fact, was left but the most miserable relics that this country could leave them—the wretched military pensioners. That was the plan which the noble Earl and the hon. Gentleman were about to carry out in the largest and most exposed of our colonies, and yet, with regard to other Colonies to which the proposition was far more specially applicable, the same proposition was said to be an abandonment of them. He could tell the hon. Gentleman that his policy was rapidly leading to the abandonment of the Colonies, while the hon. Baronet (Sir W. Molesworth) and those who supported him had suggested the surest policy of retaining them. The policy of the hon. Gentleman was a rotten policy—it was founded upon half-principles—it was a system of doing by halves what his (Mr. Adderley's) friends were for doing by wholes, so that the dangers might be met by boldly and firmly carrying out their principles. The hon. Gentleman went on to say that there was no connexion between local independent self-government and the reduction of military expenditure. Now on that point the hon. Gentleman was altogether at issue with his chief: the very reverse of that principle was laid down by Earl Grey in the strongest and broadest manner. In relation to New Zealand and to other Colonies, Earl Grey laid down, in one of his recent despatches, this broad principle—that whenever local government was given to a colony, then considerable retrenchments might be made in the civil, and still greater retrenchments in the military, expenditure. And yet the hon. Under Secretary said that there was no connexion whatever between Colonial self-government and imperial retrenchment. He, for one, could not understand on what ground the Government opposed the Motion of the hon. Baronet the Member for Southwark, for it seemed to him that the whole point had been conceded in Earl Grey's despatches to Canada, presented this morning, and the only complaint against them was, that, in agreeing in the principle of the hon. Baronet's Motion, they failed to carry it out in practice, except by such occasional dribblets and half measures. The noble Earl had admitted, in his despatches to all those Colonies to which the hon. Baronet's Motion applied, that they were in a state fit for self-government, and that self-government implied self-defence, but still it appeared there was in the Colonial Office a hankering after the old system of delay; so that the only difference between the supporters of this Motion and the Government was, that they proposed to do at once what the Government proposed to do gradually. Now let them consider the aspect which such a, proposition presented to the House. It had two different aspects, one of which was that of a simple question of, economy and retrenchment. He was afraid that in that respect it would find most favour in the eyes of the House. The other was in the larger aspect of their general colonial policy—this was the general question, and was entitled to the greatest consideration. As regarded the question of retrenchment, he must observe that it was a large question; that it lay at the bottom of every other measure of retrenchment; and that, in fact, no retrenchment could be carried without this. If, then, Her Majesty's Ministers opposed the Motion, it must be on better grounds than they had yet shown, for the onus of the proof lay upon them as to the necessity of maintaining the present rate of expenditure. He knew that, upon the ground of retrenchment, those hon. Gentlemen who formed what was called the economical section of the House, would be warm advocates for this proposition. From hon. Gentlemen on his (Mr. Adderley's) side of the House, he was not so sanguine of support; but he did count upon the assistance of those hon. Gentlemen who followed the right hon. Baronet the Member for Ripon (Sir J. Graham), as he knew that, but for peculiar circumstances, the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the University of Oxford (Mr. Gladstone) intended to have given his able and eloquent advocacy to the principle though not to the terms of the Motion. With regard to those Members of the House who advocated the principle of protection, he confessed he was rather mortified to find so small a number of them supporting the hon. Member for South-wark; and if he could judge from the cheers of the party, he feared that their sympathies were more with the hon. Under Secretary than with the hon. Baronet. If those hon. Gentlemen did, however, oppose this Motion, he should tell them that the farmers of England would carefully scrutinise their motives. Those hon. Gentlemen had lately been telling their constituents that they feared protection could not he regained, and that they must look for compensation in obtaining a relief from their burdens. If, then, he could show them that their present colonial system entailed a heavy burden upon the country, without being of any benefit to the colonies, he would ask the farmers of England to consider whether those could be really their friends who, after telling them that protection could not be regained, did not exert themselves to obtain for them so legitimate a removal of their burdens. The question of retrenchment was one of immense importance to the country at the present moment. The country would not tolerate the present mischievous expenditure in overlaying the natural energies of the Colonies much longer. The consequence would be that, in some moment of indignation, they would not only throw off the burden of the expenditure, but with it they would cast away the Colonies themselves. The only way to meet that danger was, to look it calmly in the face now, and to deal with it on sound, broad, and generous principles; to lay down what had never been laid down yet—a definite policy for the government of our Colonies; and to deal with them in the very reverse spirit from that which had dictated the late statement of the noble Lord at the head of the Government with respect to the Kaffir war. The noble Lord, on being asked who was to pay the expenses of the Kaffir war, instead of boldly stating that this country must bear the expenditure, and the whole of the expenditure, gave an evasive answer, trusting to the chapter of accidents, and throwing the responsibility—which properly should rest upon the strong shoulders of the Government at home—upon the weaker shoulders of the Governor in the colony. The question of retrenchment was well illustrated by what had recently taken place in that House. They had been lately discussing the question as to the disposal of the last year's surplus, as if that were an existing sum, and not already in effect distributed among the Government contractors and members of the Commissariat on the banks of the river Keiskamma. The question had been supposed to be whether the surplus was to be divided among the inhabitants of the borough of Finsbury, or among the farmers of the country: some statesmen were with scrupulous honesty turning their attention to the national debt, and others were puzzling themselves with other modes of disposing of the unusual and precarious revenue surplus; but now it appeared that it would never be theirs to dispose of: every farthing of it must go to liquidate the claims of Government contractors and agents of the* Commissariat, in South Africa; and every farthing of every other surplus that they might have for many many years to come would be similarly engulphed, for there would be no end of Kaffir wars and insurrections in the Colonies, so long as the present system was pursued. It was useless for them to husband the resources of the country while these quicksands existed on the confines of the empire, far out of their sight and beyond their control, which absorbed all their savings. What was the use of the hon. Member for Montrose looking after the pence night after night, when these colonial wars were constantly swallowing up millions of pounds? The financial discussion which was fixed for to-morrow was a positive waste of their time—it was to talk about the disposal of that which they would never have to dispose of. This was a consideration on which Englishmen were very sensitive, and rightly so. It was not so much the amount of money that constituted the grievance: it was that there was an annual expenditure caused by a particular department of the Government which was not under the control of that House. That was a state of things which was dangerous to the liberties of the country, and it was useless for them to discuss the disposal of the revenues while Ministers had the uncontrolled disposal of so large a portion of them. It would be much better for them to have back again the imposition of shipmoney, or benevolences, or any other of the tyrannical contrivances of former times, rather than maintain the semblance of control over the public purse, and have these untold sums drawn from their resources, by which they endured all the miseries of despotism, combined with all the troubles of democracy. Their money was taken from them day by day and year by year, while they foolishly troubled themselves as if they had the control of it themselves. He thought they might well adopt the language used by the Parliament of King Henry VIII. to Cardinal Wolsey, when he was sent to demand a loan or benevolence—" If our money is taken from us in this manner by commissions, then are we taxed like those in France, and this country will be bond, and not free." He had no sympathy whatever with those who grudged all expenditure whatever on the part of this country for the maintenance of her Colonies, as if they were useless and unprofitable. He thought that the men who argued in this way evinced a narrow policy and a degraded philosophy. He had no sympathy with those who could look calmly upon the disintegration of this great empire in the loss of its Colonies, and who looked upon this question as entirely a pecuniary one. He could not look with calmness upon the loss of any of our Colonies, nor had he any sympathy with those who, even from irritation at the policy of the Government, and the consequent disappointment of their own hopes, could look contented upon the chance of such a loss. He should like to quote upon this subject the words of Mr. Godley, in a letter to Mr. Gladstone. That gentleman feared the loss of our Colonies on two grounds—first, on the discontent of the Colonies and their growing consciousness of strength; and, second, on the fact that there was a party springing up in the country and in that House who contemplated with satisfaction the idea of the loss of the Colonies. He said— When the Roman legions drew in their line from the Danube, it was not the loss of the province of Dacia, but the satisfaction of the Roman people, which constituted the evil omen of national decline. And he went on to say— With regard to the loss of our American Colonies, disastrous as that was, that we had lost less of prestige and of real strength in that unfortunate struggle, than if we had said, with the luxurious and effeminate Roman triumvir, We have lost a world, and feel content to lose it. But this was not a question whether the country could bear the loss of a few millions a year. He believed the country would be willing to bear that loss if it was, for the good of the Colonies themselves; but the truth was that the same expenditure which constituted such a burden upon the country, at the same time paralysed the Colonies, stunted their growth, and crippled their industry, so that it was not so much a question of economy, but the name of patriotism called upon them to object to the present system of expenditure. And if this policy was not only injurious to the colonists, but inhuman to the native tribes, and creative of endless rebellions, then not only patriotism but humanity called upon them to retrench an expenditure which produced such disastrous results. The abstract question of giving local self-government to the Colonies had long been argued in vain, and therefore he thought the hon. Baronet the Member for Southwark had done right in confining himself very much to the special illustration of that general question which related to, our civil and military expenditure in the Colonies. Some hon. Gentlemen might think that this was an extraordinary occasion to call for reduction of colonial expenditure, at the very time that they were urging the Government to send an additional regiment to the Cape. But if hon. Members would look at the case, they would see that what on the surface appeared to be their weakness, was in reality the strength and soundness of their position. When was the proper time to enforce upon a spendthrift the necessity of looking into his affairs, and adopting a: system of economy, but at the time when the bills of his extravagance were coming in? That was the time to tell him to pay his debts, but at the same time. to be more economical in future. The only answer which the hon. Under Secretary had made, and the only answer he could make, was, that though the expenditure might he burdensome to this country, it was necessary to the colonists. The hon. Gentleman said they could not retain the Colonies without it. Now he (Mr. Adderley) would say that, burdensome as the expenditure was to this country, it was more hateful and injurious to the colonists themselves than to us. There was at that moment an association in the northern part of New Zealand, calling itself the Constitutional Association of New Zealand, and comprising amongst its members every householder in the province—an association which sat as a sort of Convention Parliament—side by side with the Legislative Council, and which most assuredly had the interests of the colony more at heart than the Governor and Council. That association lately stated, in an address to Earl Grey, that though his Lordship might deceive himself by thinking that they were so corrupt as to be bribed by a large Government expenditure from the mother country, or by the fortunes which individuals were making at the expense of the future prosperity of the colony, yet they hoped his Lordship would not take such a sordid view of their motives, because they were ready to abandon all these pecuniary advantages, in order to have a system of self-government fully established among themselves. Indeed, he might say that the worst part of this expenditure was its influence upon the colonists themselves. It corrupted the social system of the colony—produced a fictitious and rotten system, and, more than that, it bred the very wars, and created the rebellions, which were made the pretext for maintaining this expenditure. He appealed to the hon. Under Secretary, whether his own knowledge of the Colonies did not bear out these assertions? When a large body of individuals, civil and military, were sent out to the colony, who, after a period of idleness, expected to return to England, it was plain they must form a society about the Government House which would be injurious to the growth, the vigour, the intelligence, and the independence of the colony. The leading class of colonists unhappily were men who took no interest in the local affairs of the colony. They did not eon-verse about its well-being: their interest and their conversation related to the politics of England alone, and they held themselves aloof from the local politics of the colony they were for the time residents in. It was not so that the new American territories were formed. The people there were wholly absorbed in the affairs of the I colony. No one could read the Life of Benjamin Franklin, without seeing that I the colonists in his youthful days did not talk of the affairs of England; they were occupied with meeting their own dangers from France and Spain, dangers from the; Indian tribes, or with propositions for improving their country, or the cultivation of their lands; in fact, their own affairs formed the constant theme of their conversation. The consequence of our present colonial state of society was, that the I leading merchants, the leading residents, leant upon the Government, to the serious i injury of the colony itself. Those corresponded with the departments here, corresponding in the name of the colonists, but without consulting them. What were the results from such conditions and such; elements of society as these? The most debasing and degraded democracy, to which the democracy of America was most aristocratic—a democracy degraded below anything overheard of in the world, or anything that could have been conceived by the mind of man. Was that a dream of his, or a matter of imagination? He appealed to the hon. Gentleman (Mr. Hawes) whether the best test of the corruptive influences of the system was not to be found in; the tone of the newspapers published in some of the Colonies, which were degraded by it? Were there in those newspapers any leading articles on foreign politics, on colonial politics, on literature, on religion? No; neither politics nor religion, not even the arts and sciences, occupied any place in their discussions. The price of wool, or the crumbs to be picked from the mother country's table, alone found a place there. And then this country turned round upon the colonies and took advantage of its own wrong, and refused them self-government, because there were no men fit to legislate. This country first degraded them, and then told them they were unfit for representative constitution. How long had it been thought that England's colonies could not furnish statesmen? The English Colonies had produced such men as Washington, and Hamilton, and Madison, and Jay. But the main influence of the system on which they now depended for retaining the Colonies was, as be had already stated, to corrupt and debase them. It was too much for human nature to suppose that the Governors were not corrupted in the same way. They could carry out their own views and policy—their own whims and conceits—by the physical force of a distant and superior Power. It was a position of temptation greater than human nature could resist. The Governor in our Colonies had too much power, and not only that, but a power of a most injurious description, unchecked by the people about him, and positively pandering to the worst passions of the community to meet the necessities of his own position. He need not say that the present colonial policy was creating a system of jobbing and trafficking in the colonial expenditure. He need not repeat that, after the ample testimony of Sir H. Pottinger quoted in this debate; but he would show how this expenditure was creating a fictitious system of political economy there. What were the revenues of the Colonies? The blue books stated that this colony and that colony were flourishing, because the revenue was 100,000l. a year. And although hon. Members saw that the merely State expenditure was alone nearly equal to 4he revenue, they did not much mind that, if they saw also that the revenue kept up. But did it occur to hon. Members that the revenue was nothing more than itself an item of additional expenditure, raised by taxation on this very expenditure itself. The revenue, or the greater proportion of it, was nothing more than duties levied on the supplies of our own troops. Lord Torrington had most justly complained of the system in Ceylon accounts, of representing liabilities as assets; but that was the normal state of colonial accounts, and if the commerce of many colonies was reduced to zero, the revenue would still continue, and blue books would bring home flourishing accounts of the revenue arising from duties we pay on our own supplies to countries which had no commerce whatever. He considered that the system of paying the bishops in the Colonies, and of making a sham resemblance in the Colonies of the Church Establishment of this country, was putting the Church of England there in a position only offensive and injurious to its own interests, and equally injurious to the interests of the country. The Colonial Church was subject to all the disabilities inherent in the English Church Establishment, without any of its privileges; it was deprived of the means of self-action without any compensating power in the State, nor any claim on the sympathies or the support of the people; it was placed there as an alien thing, greatly injured by, though receiving little secure assistance from, the Imperial Legislature. Next, with reference to the military expenditure, the system was equally injurious to the colonies, as burdensome to us. It was the military expenditure itself which created and fomented rebellion, and thereby required the amount to be kept up and increased. When the Governor of a colony had a large military force at his disposal, he was very likely to make use of that force. It made the Government policy a military policy; and the possession of a large military force, especially in the hands of a military Governor,, as all our Colonial Governors are, was altogether very likely to create its own employment. This circumstance had a double action—the military force not only led to its own use and increase, but actually created the occasion of its own employment. It not only did that, but this military occupancy, wherever there were natives, led to a system of policy highly injurious and dangerous—to a policy which was the cause of these wars. There were only two systems of policy with natives which could be successfully maintained. And here he must say, that although the noble Lord at the head of the Government interrupted the hon. Baronet the Member for Southwark on his alleging that Sir Harry Smith's policy was to destroy the authority of the chiefs, and said that it was quite the reverse, yet, upon consideration, he thought the noble Lord would see that he was wrong, and the hon. Baronet was right. There were only two modes of dealing with a native population: either, in the first place, by maintaining the authority of their chiefs and the integrity of their institutions; or, in the second place, by destroying the nationality of the tribes, and establishing our own power in its place. The second was efficient, if boldly carried out. It was not an English system, but a system pursued by France in Algeria, and he thought it was rather too late for England to take a lesson in colonising from France. [Cries of "Divide, divide!"] He would not enter into that difficult and intricate question at present, as the House seemed impatient; all he meant to say was, that either system with 'nations might be made to succeed. Lord Grey's treatment of them failed, because it faltered between the two; but he would wind up his observations by expressing his opinion that the reply of the hon. Under Secretary for the Colonies had nothing whatever to do with the question, which was not whether to abandon the colonies, but to relieve them of the fatal grip of our encumbering care, and to set them free from the weakness and disturbance of the perpetual pressure of civil and military pensioners of England, with England's purse to lavish on their corruption; and that it was desirable, in the words of the Resolution proposed by the hon. Baronet (Sir W. Molesworth), "that immediate steps should be taken to relieve this country as speedily as possible from the present Civil and Military Expenditure in all its Colonies."


I rise for the purpose of assuring my hon. Friend who has just sat down, that, however little I may be disposed to agree in that very sweeping assertion which he made, when he told us that the administration of the Colonial Department united in itself all the miseries of despotism, with all the troubles of democracy, yet that I do fully concur in the belief expressed by him, that, among the ranks of what he has designated as the protectionist party, there will be found a few—I would rather change the phrase, and say that there will be found not a few—who are as decidedly and distinctly opposed to the Resolutions of the hon. Baronet the Member for Southwark, as my hon. Friend is strenuous in their support. In the very few and very brief observations which, at this period of the evening, and at this stage of the debate, shall alone feel myself justified in submitting to the House, I have not the most remote intention of following the hon. Baronet through all that wide and almost boundless field of inquiry, embracing every conceivable subject of past, present, and future colonial policy, which he has opened to our examination. I shall not follow him into that vast variety of subjects, some of which he has fully, and some partially, treated; beginning with the number of our military establishments, and the comparative advantages and disadvantages of each for the purposes of war—touching upon the question of clergy reserves in Canada—investigating the causes and results of the Canadian rebellion—favouring us with his views respecting the abolition of the punishment of transportation—sketching the history of the native wars in New Zealand—and more than sketching the history of the Kaffir war of South Africa. I am sure the House will feel with me, that it is utterly impossible, and even were it possible that it is wholly undesirable, to enter at this time on so wide and complicated a discussion; and I shall therefore confine myself strictly to the terms of that Resolution which the hon. Baronet has laid before the House. The first part of that Resolution declares— That it is the opinion of this House, that steps should be taken to relieve this Country, as speedily as possible, from its present Civil and Military Expenditure on account of the Colonies, with the exception of its expenditure on account of Military Stations or Convict Settlements. Now, here the hon. Baronet does not profess to introduce a Motion tending merely to increased economy in the Colonial Department—he does not talk of diminishing the expenditure—nor does he suggest that any particular retrenchment should be made; but his Motion implies, if it implies anything, that this country ought, at the earliest possible opportunity, to be relieved, not in part merely, but altogether, from all civil and military expenditure oil account of what the hon. Baronet designates as the Colonies properly so called. That is a point which I think it important to remark, because here the speech and the Resolution of the hon. Baronet are at variance one with the other. And, with regard to those military stations to which the hon. Baronet referred, I think there was a certain ambiguity of expression, of which the hon. Baronet himself appeared conscious. There can be no doubt but that certain of our colonial possessions are, in the fullest sense of the term, military stations. There can be no doubt on that subject in the case of such stations as Gibraltar, Malta, Bermuda—perhaps I may add Hong Kong; but surely we should be led into a gross fallacy if we were to consider as military stations those colonies, and those only, which are military stations exclusively. I cannot understand why, because a Colony possesses a certain value in an agricultural or commercial point of view, it should not be admitted at the same time to have some military importance also. Take the case of Canada. I do not think it is possible to entertain a doubt, but that, in the event—one which, I trust, may never occur—of a war between this country and the United States, the command of a frontier of 1,500 miles, being the only vulnerable point in the whole boundary line of the American Union, would be a very great military advantage. If that be the case, then Canada, although not exclusively a military possession, has, nevertheless, a certain military value; and, in regard of that value, it comes under that description of Colonies which the hon. Baronet's Resolution is so framed as to exclude. I go on to another instance. The hon. Baronet, as I understood him, admitted that Barbadoes was one of those Colonies which it might be expedient to retain as military posts; but he went on to say that, in the West Indian group there were other islands which were of no conceivable value in this respect; and he mentioned, by way of example, the island of Jamaica. Now, it so happens that, at this moment, Jamaica has a very distinct and peculiar military importance, which has been recognised, not by this country alone, but by the more impartial testimony of a Foreign Power, with regard to that which has now become, and which will become to a far greater degree, one of the chief commercial highways of the world—I mean the Isthmus of Panama. I know it to be a fact, that, when the question of the three routes between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, by Panama, by Nicaragua, and by Tehuantepec, was first brought under discussion in the United States, the Government of that country expressed themselves strongly in favour of adopting, if it were found practicable, the last of these routes, on the ground that the other two were entirely commanded and controlled by the greater proximity of Jamaica. I cannot, therefore, admit that all those Colonies which the hon. Baronet has so carefully included in his list, as not being military Colonies, have no military value or importance. And, with regard to Canada, how are you to disconnect and separate such military posts as Quebec, Halifax, and Kingston from the provinces in which they are situated? Are you to retain these fortresses—all of them among the principal towns in their respective provinces, one of them a capital town—under an imperial form of government, while you give different institutions and a different government to the provinces themselves? It appears to me, that you will find very considerable difficulty in taking such a course; yet that difficulty is one to which the attention of the hon. Baronet does not seem to have been directed. I shall now proceed to offer a few remarks upon the second Resolution, which is expressed in these words:— That it is expedient at the same time to give to the inhabitants of the Colonies which are nei- ther Military Stations nor Convict Settlements ample powers for their local self-government, and to free them from that Imperial interference with their affairs which is inseparable from their present military occupation. When I read, that Resolution first, I could not help thinking that it was more applicable to a Colonial Government such as that of Spain, than to our own. I could understand a Member of the Spanish Cortes holding such language in reference to Cuba or Porto Rico; but if the hon. Baronet, when he speaks of the Colonies of this country as being in a state of military occupation, means that they are so occupied with a view of keeping down their inhabitants by force of arms, with a view of establishing a military despotism, and of ruling by the sword, then I can only say, that the hon. Baronet knows much less of the practice than he does of the theory of our Colonial Government. What are the real facts? We have in British North America a population which, though not recently numbered, will probably, at the next census, fall little short of 2,000,000. The extent of country over which that population is scattered is 4,000,000 square miles of land. What is the military control over that population? I believe the number of troops has lately been reduced by Lord Grey; but, previous to that reduction, the formidable garrison which is to keep in check such a population, dispersed over such an area, consisted of 9,000 men, two-thirds of whom are solely and exclusively employed in garrisoning the fortresses to which I have alluded. Then there is the case of Jamaica. In Jamaica, with half-a-million of inhabitants, in1 a rugged and mountainous country, where I would defy any troops in the world to succeed in putting down insurrection, the armed force amounts to about two regiments, or 1,400 men. I think, Sir, I have said enough on this head; but there is yet another ground on which the hon. Baronet rests his Resolution. I understood the hon. Baronet to lay down broadly and distinctly this proposition-that Parliament was either unwilling or incompetent to legislate for the Colonies. Now, I am aware that that charge has-been frequently brought forward—it has, indeed, become one of the commonplaces of colonial debates, to accuse the Legislature of this country of indifference to colonial affairs. Nor do I deny that, in days-gone by, in days far removed from our own, perhaps in the time of the unreformed Parliament, there may have been some ground for such an imputation. But is it so now? I have only to appeal to the personal experience of Members—I have only to appeal to the authentic record of our Debates, to furnish me with incontestable evidence that Parliament has not been neglectful of the concerns of the colonies. I had the curiosity to refer to that record; and I now hold in my hand a list of the colonial debates which have taken place since the commencement of the present Parliament. Within the last few years we have debated the affairs of New Zealand—we have had almost endless discussions on the sugar duties, and on the kindred subjects of West Indian distress; on that question a Committee was appointed to collect evidence, and the information thus obtained is more ample and more valuable than any which was previously possessed even by the colonists themselves. Then the cession of Vancouver's Island—the charter of the Hudson's Bay Company—the affairs of Guiana and Ceylon—the question of transportation to the Cape—the new constitution given to Australia—all, in their turn, have occupied a large share of the time and attention of this House; and I will venture to say that the debates which took place on those topics were as fully attended, and conducted with as much ability, as any which involved the consideration of our foreign or domestic affairs. But even this is not altogether a fair test; for in dealing with matters of foreign or home policy, we discuss every minute detail: while in the case of colonial affairs, the only power which the House habitually exercises, is that of a court of last resort—a court of appellate jurisdiction from the decisions of the colonial assemblies. Now, what will be the result of transferring all power over the colonies from Parliament to their own assemblies? Do what you will, the colonial legislatures must always be more or less democratic bodies; and considering the social condition of the colonies, I do not think that it is possible, and I do not say that, if possible, it would be wise, to make there other than they are. But I do say that, where you have adopted and sanctioned that democratic principle in the local governments, it is more than usually desirable to keep in your hands some control, some means of preventing party feeling from running too high (which it is always more apt to do in a small community than in a large one), and some power of granting redress to those who may, through the effect of that party-feeling have suffered injury. There are several circumstances which render the possession of such a check peculiarly desirable. In the first place, the population of a colony is necessarily fluctuating in amount; and, supposing one party to be in power at the present time, and to possess a permanent majority of the existing population, still at the end of five or ten years the influx of new inhabitants may be such as to cause power to pass from the hands of that party into those of their opponents. And next, I may remind the House of that which is so prominently put forward by Lord Durham, in his report upon Canada—the fact that the population of several of our colonies is not composed wholly of one race, but is heterogeneous, mixed up of various races, and those races for the most part bearing towards one another the very reverse of friendly feeling. I need not refer to the language of Lord Durham's report, in which he says, that he had expected to find a struggle of parties going on, but that in its stead he had found a war of races. I say that the apprehensions expressed in that report are not unfounded—that although an actual war of races may not arise, yet that there may arise differences which will lead to violence; differences which will make it most dangerous to give to one party uncontrolled authority over the other; to guard against which, it is absolutely necessary that Parliament should retain for itself the power of interfering in extreme cases. Again, Sir, I am at a loss to understand on what ground my hon. Friend beside me attributes to our system of colonial administration all the miseries of despotism, and all the troubles of democracy. [Mr. ADDEBLEY: I did not speak of the colonial administration generally, but of the expenditure.] Well, the expenditure is surely a part of the colonial administration. My hon. Friend draws a distinction without a difference. But with respect to the administration of the colonies generally, I would, had I been so fortunate as to rise at an earlier period of the evening, have offered to the House a brief statement of the degree of prosperity enjoyed by those colonies, which my hon. Friend represents as utterly crushed and degraded by the operation of the present system. I shall not now take up the time of the House with statistical details. I have in my hand such details relative to all the colonies of the Australian group; but I shall cite only the single instance of New South Wales. In 1828, the exports of New South Wales were of the value of 90,000l.; in 1848, they were of the value of 1,800,000l.; showing an increase of twenty times their original amount within as many years. The imports were in 1828, 178,000l.; in 1848, they had increased to 550,000l. Another and perhaps a still more conclusive test of prosperity is afforded by the comparative amount of population at each period. In 1828, it amounted only to 36,000l.; in 1848, it exceeded 220,000l.; Nor is this an isolated case: similar statements may he made in reference to all the other Australian colonies; but with these I shall not now trouble the House; only observing that there is not One of them which does not go to prove that the progress of the colonial empire in that quarter has been as rapid, as steady, I might almost say as marvellous, as that of the American States along and beyond the Mississippi valley. Let me not, however, be misunderstood. I am not for a moment contending that all this prosperity is either directly or indirectly the work of Government: it is enough for my purpose to prove, as I hope I have done, that the government of the mother country has not prevented that prosperity; that under it the colonies have flourished; and that therefore it cannot merit the censure of my hon. Friend. It used to be argued in the days when the slave trade was still defended, and its abolition still discussed in this House, that a population which wasted away, and could only be kept up by being continually recruited from other countries, was proved by that circumstance to be in an unnatural state, and to be suffering under oppression and misgovernment. I think the argument was a fair one, and I think the converse is equally true: I think it may be contended that, where you find a population doubling itself in ten years, and exhibiting every outward sign of material and physical prosperity, there you may safely infer that there has been no very serious act of misgovernment. One exception I must make to what I have said respecting the prosperity of the colonies—I mean the case of the West Indies—and this exception I am the more anxious to make, because I am aware that, otherwise my present statements might seem inconsistent with those which I and which others have offered on the subject of those colonies. I am not about to justify the conduct of the Colonial Government towards them. I believe in the reality of the dis- tress represented as there existing; I believe, also, that that distress was in great part the work of the Government, and that it arose out of the Act of 1846. But had the colonial policy recommended by the hon. Baronet been then in operation, the Act of 1846 would have equally passed; for, assuredly, commercial privileges granted to the produce of one country over that of another, form no part of the hon. Baronet's system. And looking back, not to 1846, but to 1833, I find good reason to believe, that the independence of the colonial legislature at that period, would have produced evils far more serious in their nature than even those of which we now' complain. Knowing the feelings of the colonists on the subject of slavery—remembering in what temper and spirit every proposal for its abolition was met by them, I ask hon. Members whether they can believe that by an independent colonial legislature the Emancipation Act would ever have been passed? If, then, before the passing of that Act, Parliament had deprived itself of the right to interfere in colonial affairs, England would have incurred the deep and indelible disgrace of seeing her colonies nominally under her control, really dependent upon her for protection, yet sanctioning' and perpetuating those very abuses against which she had repeatedly and strenuously protested. Again, Sir, I must confess that I can form in my own mind no very distinct idea of the exact nature of that constitution or set of constitutions which the hon. Baronet proposes to give to the colonies. If I understand him, he suggests something in the nature of a confederation—but a confederation of what kind? It is not a confederation for commercial purposes, like the German Zollverein, for the hon. Baronet repudiates the notion of a commercial policy based upon differential duties; a military confederation it is not either, for that the hon. Baronet disclaims; and I acknowledge that I do not understand the principle of a confederation, each of whose members is to take for their motto and their maxim, "Every one for himself, and Heaven for us all." Is it supposed that freeing ourselves from all charge on account of the colonies in time of peace, we shall throw off the responsibility of their defence in time of war? It is surely far more easy and simple to say now, that we will suffer no aggression upon them, than it would be to hold that language, if they were in the anomalous posi- tion of being to a certain extent under our protection, but at the same time independent as regards the management of their own affairs. The hon. Baronet draws a distinction which I do not well understand, between local and imperial wars. I do not see how a colony is to have the right of making peace and war with one Power, and not with another. Such a distinction is unknown to our law. If we declare that for any war, be it what it may, the colony shall be compelled to pay, we give to the colony the right to commence, or to determine, those wars at its pleasure. For it is clearly impossible to say to any colony—for instance, to the Cape of Good Hope—"You shall pay the expenses of this Kaffir war that you are carrying on, but we will prescribe the manner in which it shall be carried on, and the terms on which peace shall be made." But when you have ceded the rights of making peace and war, you must allow the colonies to contract alliances with whom they will, for the one right is conveyed in the other; and then what vestige or trace does there remain of English sovereignty or of English dominion? The hon. Baronet, I well know, disclaims all intention of giving up the colonies. I give him full credit for sincerity in that declaration; but I cannot forget that the results of measures are often very different from the intentions of their framers; and, looking rather at the hon. Baronet's Resolution, than at the speech in which in which he introduced it, I am compelled to come to the same conclusion as that of the hon. Gentleman the Under Secretary of the Colonies, and with him to believe that the effect of this Motion, if carried, would be the entire abandonment of the colonial empire. To that step I never will consent. I believe that it would be an act of political suicide unprecedented in the history of the world; and I shall therefore give to the Motion of the hon. Baronet my most strenuous and decided opposition.


said, it was not his intention at that hour to make a speech on the question before the House, because there had been one speech that night which rendered another unnecessary except to answer it, and he must say no answer had been given to it yet. The hon. Gentleman! who had just sat down began by saying that he did not understand the comprehensive view which his (Mr. Cobden's) hon. Friend (Sir W. Molesworth) took of the colonial question; and he must say that the hon. Gentleman (Mr. Stanley) had succeeded in narrowing it down into a very small compass. He did not say a syllable of the English interest in the question—not one word of the interest which the taxpayers of this country had in it. Even in the view he took of the colonial interest, it appeared to him very much in the light of a military organisation. Every colony lie had invested with a military character, in order to find an excuse for furnishing it with a garrison. He began with Canada, and spoke of the value of its 1,500 miles of frontier, in a military point of view. Now he (Mr. Cobden) should say that if a war were to break out with the United States—and God forbid that such a calamity should occur !—we could have no greater disadvantage than to have a frontier of 1,500 miles to defend against 24,000,000 of the bravest and most spirited people in the world; and to have to protect 2,000,000 against those 24,000,000. Then again—but he could hardly conceive that he had understood the hon. Gentleman right—he wished to make Jamaica a military post, and he gave, as an illustration of the advantage to be derived from that station, the fact, that the Americans, in choosing their route from New York to the Isthmus of Panama, had not adopted Chagres on account of its proximity to Jamaica, because they wished to avoid this military station. He (Mr. Cobden) could not imagine a better proof of the disadvantages of seeking to ally military possessions and an aggressive policy with mercantile matters. They were driving away the great stream of commerce which was now setting in from New York to Panama, by making Jamaica an aggressive, at all events a military, position; in fact, it diverted that great stream of commerce from its shores. The hon. Gentleman had also told them of the great prosperity of the Colonies, and he had particularised the vast increase of Australia. It was true; but the hon. Gentleman might have gone further and told them what a workman could earn per day. He might have told them that in New South Wales a common labourer could earn 4s. or 5s. a day, and could afford to eat meat three times a day if he pleased. And then the hon. Gentleman might have turned from the Colonies to the condition of the people at home, and asked himself whether some justice should not be done to the people of this country; whether the people here, where men worked in the agricultural districts for 1s. or 1s. 6d. a day, and glad to get it, should be taxed to keep up a costly system to support the prosperity which had been described. The hon. Gentleman had certainly not made this a mercenary question. He could not be charged with what the hon. Gentleman the Under Secretary for the Colonies had charged his (Mr. Cobden's) hon. Friend the Member for Southwark—namely, that he had made this a pecuniary question. Well, but could they afford to disregard pecuniary considerations? If he understood the signs of the times, there never was a period in history when there had been such great discussion, or when so much depended upon pounds, shillings, and pence. What had they on Monday but a great debate and a great division about the appropriation of a surplus of 1,500,000l.? And what were they to have to-morrow but another great discussion, because an important interest in the country wished to be considered in the apportionment of the 1,500,000l. of so-called surplus? Did the hon. Member for Buckinghamshire disregard pecuniary questions? Did the hon. Member for South Nottinghamshire (Mr. Barrow), one of the latest importations from the agricultural mind, find that the pecuniary question was totally disregarded in his election for South Nottinghamshire? The hon. Member the Under Secretary for the Colonies had not taken a very shrewd view of the question, or he would not have sneered at the hon. Baronet's (Sir W. Molesworth's) proposition. He (Mr. Hawes) had asked whether we would give up our Colonies for 1,200,000l. a year? But he (Mr. Cobden) would ask, in reply, would the Colonies give up the mother country for that sum? If their argument was worth anything, they meant that it was necessary to keep soldiers in order to retain possession of these territories by force. If they would not admit that, they must admit his hon. Friend's proposition, that they were throwing away upon the Colonies money to the extent of 1,200,000l. Now, he thought that the hon. Baronet took a much more generous view of the colonial character than the hon. Under Secretary did. He presented before them two propositions. He said—" We propose to withdraw all expenses on account of military or civil establishments; but on the other hand, we tender to you the right and dignity of citizenship—the power to govern yourselves." But his hon. Friend went on to say—"If you value these privileges, you must be prepared, for your freedom and self-government, to pay the usual price in discharging all your own military and civil expenses." He had no doubt but that his hon. Friend had taken a fair view of the case when he made that proposal. The hon. Baronet had incurred the penalty of some obloquy with very narrow-minded and shortsighted people amongst his constituency, for having watched so carefully the affairs of the Colonies; but he thought, after the hon. Baronet's speech that night, even those narrow-minded persons would perceive that their own interests were intimately bound up in the question, and would acknowledge that he had followed the only-path by which we can make any sensible reduction in our home expenditure. He (Mr. Cobden) agreed with the hon. Member for Stafford (Mr. Urquhart), that the only way in which they could make a sensible reduction in the expenses of the country was by reducing the items for military and civil services in the Colonies; and before long they would all—he did not care whether they were free-traders or protectionists—be brought to regard in its true light the importance of the question of national expenditure. They could not depend on the surplus they had now got; it was already eaten up in anticipation. Probably, at that moment, half of it was consumed in Kaffraria; and even without that war it could not be depended upon. They were liable to occasional fluctuations in the revenue now as before the corn laws were repealed. Some one might perhaps attempt to turn that admission against him; but he did not consider that, because the corn laws were repealed, they were not liable to occasional fluctuation in the revenue. Suppose another series of revolutionary struggles on the Continent, or an inflation of the monetary system, and a consequent panic—this might produce a deficit in a single year. The only way to look for a permanent surplus was by a reduction of the expenditure. They would be obliged to curtail the expenses now incurring in the Colonies. The hon. Gentleman opposite (Mr. Stanley) spoke as though money might be had to an indefinite amount, without trouble or cost, and they had only to tax their fancy as to the spot where they would like to have garrisons or fortresses, and there to build them for their own glorification. But they would have to count the cost, and look to the expenditure. He spoke as a free-trader when he said that our relations with the Colonies had been completely changed by, the adop- tion of our free-trade policy; and if it was folly before to garrison the Colonies, it was now downright insanity. Hon. Gentlemen who hoped to get back protection might imagine that that system necessarily implied a great expense in maintaining Colonies. He looked at it in a totally different view. He had always regarded the reduction of that expenditure as a consequence of free trade. He had learnt it from Adam Smith, when he learnt free trade. Let anybody read the last two chapters of that immortal work, on the expense of Colonies, written before we lost the United States. Adam Smith said distinctly that we should make the Colonies pay their own expenses in time of peace, and contribute as much as would indemnify us in time of war. We could not tax them; we could not make them contribute to the national exchequer; therefore the fair thing was for them to pay their own expenses. What he said about free trade must be adopted by every hon. Member who sat on the corner of the opposite benches. He was much surprised to see that the right hon. Baronet the Member for Ripon (Sir J. Graham) had left his seat; these were occasions on which they could not afford to lose him. He had taken a course on the subject of commercial policy which involved certain logical consequences. The House was now dealing with one of them; and the right hon. Baronet ought to be there. He was glad, however, to see so many of the eminent Members who acted with the right hon. Baronet present on this occasion. What had been the feeling in that House as to the connexion of the Colonies and the mother country when protection was our policy? It had always been considered that we kept up our establishments in the Colonies because we believed we were compensated by an exclusive trade with them. In 1819, Mr. Goulburn, on behalf of the Government, had stated, following the hon. Member for Montrose (Mr. Hume), who was then, as now, trying to reduce the expense of the Colonies— That the principle on which this country had hitherto regulated its colonial policy was, to maintain the civil and military establishments of the Colonies, in compensation for a monopoly of their commerce, a principle which was justified by sound policy, and ought not rashly to be abandoned. But it had been abandoned, and with the right hon. Gentleman's consent. We had now no monopoly in the market of the Colonies; they had none in ours. Therefore, we had got rid of the plea formerly used for keeping up the expense in the Colonies. The hon. Member for King's Lynn (Mr. Stanley), seemed to think that some differential duty was still preserved in the Colonies; he was probably not aware that, by the Act of 1846, the colonists were enabled to regulate their own tariffs; and they had I taken away all protection from our commodities entering into those Colonies. In Canada we had given up all claim to sovereignty over the land. He could not imagine why we kept soldiers in Quebec or Kingston; we could not vote an acre of waste land in Canada. The people of this country had dreamt of possessing some 4,000,000 of acres of land: it was not ours, but belonged to the Canadian Legislature, which had absolute power over it. What rights of sovereignty then had we to preserve? What were our 9,000 troops there to keep? Was it possession of the country? We had 600,000l. worth of Ordnance stores there, scattered all over the country. The first effect of a rebellion would be, that all these would be taken possession of by the people; for our 9,000 troops could not defend them against 100,000 riflemen, as good as any in the world. The fact was this—there was a prodigious deal of patronage, and expenditure, and jobbing, in the laying out of that money in Canada; and both here and there, there were powerful parties interested in that expenditure, and they would keep it up as long as they could. But to suppose that the English taxpayers, the mass of the people, had anything to do with it, was an absurdity. Suppose this civil and military expenditure taken away from the Colonies, would they not still be benefited by the connexion of the mother country? He would mention one fact alone: we were now spending, or about to spend 500,000l. to establish post-office packets, and for no other purpose but because these were our colonies. We contracted for the line of packets carrying the mails to the West Indies for 240,000l. He did not believe the gross amount of postage of the whole of the letters would amount to 60,000l. Why, therefore, did we pay this 240,000l.? It was not on account of the magnitude of the commerce, but because the West India Islands were our colonies; and it was a very great convenience to them to have a rapid and regular line of correspondence. See what we were spending in packets to New York and Halifax: was not a great deal of that arrangement with reference to the Canadas? We had also intercolonial communication from Bermuda to Halifax, and between the West India Islands; and we were now forming a grand scheme for a steam communication with Australia, China, New Zealand, and the Cape of Good Hope. We were spreading packets all over the world for the benefit of the Colonies, but we did not come upon them for a farthing of taxation. All this was paid out of the taxes of this country, and a great deal of it very unprofitably. We had, therefore, pecuniary bonds to hold these Colonies, provided they could be held by no other; but a stronger bond was their having a common origin, one religion, one race, one language, and the same laws with ourselves, which would attach the Colonies to us without any of these small bribes of civil and military expenditure. He was not ashamed to say that he looked upon this very much as a pecuniary question. We could not go on paying all this money without any reason. No ground could be alleged why we should incur all this expenditure. Therefore, this Motion was one of the most important that would come before them this Session. If hon. Gentlemen opposite ignored this Motion, or walked out against it, and certainly at the present moment the state of the benches looked very ominous of such a proceeding—it would be a mockery for them to bring forward Motions for the repeal of certain taxes which they alleged to press on the agricultural interest. He had a very strong impression that if they reduced the expenditure in the Colonies as they might do, with the growing surplus that might spring from that, bringing in increased receipts in other directions, the agricultural interest might get all the remission of taxation which properly interfered with their industry. Such had been the increase of the revenue, and so little had the expenditure been reduced, that he could even see his way to an abolition of the malt duty, if hon. Gentlemen would take a rational course on this colonial question. But, most certainly, if they voted for keeping up the whole of this expenditure, there was no possibility of getting rid of such an amount of taxation as that; and hon. Gentlemen ought to make up their minds either to vote for the reduction in the only practicable way in which it could be made, or to cease grumbling about their peculiar burdens. It was childish, cowardly, humiliating, and disgraceful, to be continually crying out about the heavy weight of taxation, and to refuse, when questions of this kind were brought forward, to take the only possible way of reducing the burden. Hon. Gentlemen opposite would be on their trial on this occasion. If they wished to see any reduction of taxation, let them join the hon. Baronet who brought this Motion forward, who was one of themselves, interested like them in agricultural pursuits, and who brought the question forward on independent grounds, for it had not come from the "Manchester school." If ever there was a fair opportunity afforded hon. Gentlemen opposite for giving an honest straightforward vote, this was the occasion, and he hoped they would embrace it.


Sir, I quite agree with the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down, that this is a most important question. It is not a question of saving 1,200,000l. or 1,500,000l., or even 2,000,000l. a year. It is not even a question of the repeal of the malt tax, which the hon. Gentleman seems to think the most captivating way of representing it; but it is in fact a question whether the tendency of our policy shall be towards the maintenance or the dissolution of the empire. That is the issue to which the argument of the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down has driven the question. Sir, this Motion, as the hon. Member for Lynn (Mr. Stanley) argued most justly, in his very able speech, is a question not of diminishing a part of the military expenditure, or of reducing what may be excessive in some of our colonies, but it is a Motion for taking away the whole of our military expenditure and the whole of over military force from those colonies which the hon. Gentleman said cannot be classed as convict or military stations. Now, Sir, it is impossible to consider such a question as this without endeavouring to trace what might he the consequences of such a policy being adopted; and of effecting this policy, as the Resolution says, as speedily as possible. The hon. Member for the West Riding (Mr. Cobden) says the colonies will remain attached to us from the sympathy which properly belongs to them as being of the some race as ourselves. But that is not a consideration that can govern the whole of our colonial possessions, nor is it a consideration that affects some of the principal colonies to which he has adverted. With regard to Canada, you cannot say at once that you shall have no military expenditure on account of that dependency. If you show a disposition not to defend Canada in time of war, why they have a country of the same race certainly as those born in Canada, and to them, in such a case, I think they might naturally turn for that protection which we denied. But it may be said that Canada has a sufficient population to found an independent State of her own. But what is the case with regard to many of our colonies? Jamaica, for instance, could never expect to exist as a separate State. But the other day there was a publication, which I have seen noticed, by an American gentleman who visited Jamaica, which predicted that that colony in twenty years hence must belong to the United States. But adopt the policy now recommended to you, and that result will take place, not in twenty years hence, but in two years. It is impossible that a colony like Jamaica could see the whole of its garrisons taken away, and find itself denied all due protection, without turning to some strong State which would give it protection; and that State would be the United States of America. Why, it is the same thing with regard to other colonies which in the course of former wars you have taken from other Powers—the Cape of Good Hope, for instance, which is in great part inhabited by Dutch. If you say that you will leave them to submit to any incursion, to any attack, to the danger and desolation of any inroad and any massacre, what could be fairer than they should apply to the kingdom of the Netherlands—that they should ask again to belong to Holland, and seek again the protection of a State which would give them that protection which a colony has a right to ask as long as you demand allegiance from them? In the same way Trinidad might invoke the protection of Spain, and the Mauritius seek that of France; and so in the course of a very few years—in the course of two or three years—you would have dissolved that colonial empire which it cost the wisdom, the designs, and the valour of some of our greatest statemen, and of our best soldiers, and of our most gallant sailors, to build up in the course of our former wars. Well, but then my hon. Friend who brings forward this Motion, and others who take this line of argument, have spoken as if there were to be perpetual peace—as if, because we have been long free from the calamities of war, there was no danger of peace being interrupted. But we must never lose sight of the danger that by some sudden turn of events (and often very sudden unforeseen events bring hostilities within view), we might be engaged in hostilities with some of the Powers of Europe; and what then would be the case with regard to your trade? It may be very well in time of peace that you should have no connexion with colonies; but immediately that war began, those colonies would be the stations of hostile ships and hostile privateers, and all over the world your trade would be intercepted, cut up, and destroyed by those which are now loyal and obedient colonies, but which would then be the resort of your most implacable enemies. Sir, I confess that I am sometimes very much disheartened by the language which is held in this House by various hon. Members, and which is held, perhaps, quite as much without this House as within it. It really sometimes seems to me that, after all the efforts which we have made in the course of centuries, from the time when the fleet of Oliver Cromwell took Jamaica, to the end of the last war, to erect this great empire, that there were really persons who, seeing that we were in possession of this great empire, and that we had sufficient revenues, and an Army and Navy to maintain it, had really considered in what way that empire might be diminished and dismembered. For it is quite clear that if these plans were carried into effect in the manner in which it is proposed, that you would not for many years maintain your place and your reputation in the world. No sooner was it known that you were ready to give up these colonies, no sooner had they resorted to foreign Powers for protection, than you would find that those foreign Powers would then, with perhaps little cause of quarrel, concert the mode of attack against a country like this. For, although we may be animated with the most benevolent feelings towards all foreign nations, you must not conceal from yourselves that the great place which we have acquired by many battles and many victories, is an object of envy to many other States in the world, and that immediately they saw that you were disposed to shrink from the assertion of your empire—that although the limits of that empire were not narrowed, yet that the spirit which maintained them was narrowed—that the soul which animated this mighty monarchy had departed from it, you would see presently that that envy would spring up into wars of aggression against you. And, in what a state would you be left then? You would have none of the ma- terial power which these colonies give you, but you would not have parted with that debt which has in part been incurred in acquiring these colonies. That debt would remain, and the obligation to pay the interest of that debt would still remain. That you are bound to pay, and that no doubt you would pay; but you would have to pay that undiminished debt, out of a diminished empire and diminished resources. Now, Sir, I must say that. I think there would likewise be a loss of reputation, which, if this House were disposed for any short time to suffer it, the people of this country would not suffer. Because remember that when in former times colonies were founded in North America, obtaining little support, perhaps, from the mother country, that it repeatedly happened that there were incursions into the infant settlements that were then established, that whole villages were destroyed, that mothers and children were murdered, and that those settlements were repeatedly restored and rebuilt. Now, in those times the news of these calamities did not perhaps arrive in this country for a year, or even two years, after they had occurred; and with the little communication that there then was between the colonies and the mother country, these calamities did not produce any great effect. But if you were to hear now that a number of English settlers, whom, in 1819, the Government of this country had sent out to the Cape of Good Hope, had been attacked, and the greater portion of them murdered, and that the land, that' the villages which they inhabited, and the farms which they had cultivated were occupied by a barbarous tribe of savages—if you heard, perhaps from New Zealand, that another tribe of savages had destroyed one of your towns there—if, having abandoned (as the hon. Gentleman proposes to abandon) your settlements on the coast of Africa (that was part of his saving, that not only the African squadron but the settlement on the coast of Africa should be abandoned)—if you then heard that the slave trade was again rife and flourishing on these coasts:—if you heard all these things, I think that the people of England, on receiving that intelligence, would burn with indignation, and say, that whatever the saving might have been, that although you might save 1,000,000l. or 2,000,000l." by this economical project," let us bear that burden again—let as pay twice as much rather than have our fellow-countrymen butchered and destroyed where we have ourselves settled them, and where they dwelt under the protection of the British Crown and British nation." Therefore, putting aside the question of empire and power, I think that the honour and reputation of this country would so greatly suffer, that you would be unable to maintain such a policy as this. Now, Sir, with regard to the Motion. The hon. Baronet (Sir W. Molesworth) proposes that in return for the loss of this military protection, you should give the colonies free representative institutions. I think that the argument that was used on this subject by ray hon. Friend the Under Secretary of the Colonies (Mr. Hawes) was a valid one, and that with regard to many of the colonies it is quite unanswerable. In Jamaica you have free representative institutions. The Assembly of Jamaica takes far more power to itself than the House of Commons takes to itself. Therefore it would be impossible to give them the equivalent of free institutions. You might take away the 1,500 men whom you have stationed there; but you could hardly give them a more powerful popular assembly than they already have in Jamaica. In Trinidad, on the other hand, you have about 400 men; but if you take them away, and give representative institutions to this colony, as I stated last year, it is the opinion of the most able Governor of that colony, Lord Harris, that the number of races there is such, that there would be sure to be a contention—a war of races—and, therefore, instead of the 400 men being diminished, you would probably be required to augment the garrison of Trinidad, instead of its being entirely taken away. This question of the difference of races in our colonies is one of the utmost importance, and one which must not be lost sight of in the consideration of the military garrisons that we keep in these colonies. We have French and Spaniards and Germans and Dutch; and we have savage tribes of every description—Indians in our American colonies, Aborigines in Australia, Kaffirs, Hottentots, and Fingoes at the Cape of Good Hope, and Asiatics in other parts of our possessions. There is scarcely a race of mankind which we have not under our dominion, and in many instances these races are mixed together in the same colony. Taking away the military protection, would be, in many cases, to give many of these races the sole military preponderance, and, therefore, to induce fatal dissensions amongst the various races of these colonies. Why, take the case which is apparently one of far less danger, that of Canada. My hon. Friend who made this Motion said he would in all such cases leave the colony to provide for its own internal tranquillity, although he might think it wise to send a subsidy of some kind from this country in order to support them and to maintain that tranquillity. Now, Sir, without going back very far, any one who has observed the history of Canada (as I am sure that the hon. Baronet must have done) must have observed that the danger of Canada arises from the colony having been divided into two parts—the one inhabited almost solely by the British race, and the other almost solely by the French race, and that the French race being the majority, having I think two-thirds, or perhaps three-fourths of the Assembly, they were bent upon separating from this country, in order to establish a French Canadian republic in Lower Canada. Such was the danger, and such was the attempt, but English resisted that attempt, when the insurrection took place. By means of your military force you were enabled, under the direction of Sir J. Colborne, in a very few weeks, to put down that insurrection, and to maintain the authority of the Crown in that colony; but if, instead of maintaining it by means of English regiments, you had put down that insurrection by means of the English militia of the same province, I must say that I believe the contention would have lasted far longer, and the animosity would have been far more dreadful than that which resulted from the suppression of the insurrection in the mode in which it took place. While, therefore, I cannot assent to this Motion, I must say that I admired the greater part of the speech of my hon. Friend: it was a very able speech, and showed to what an extent he had studied this great subject; he brought it forward in a manner not unworthy of so important a question. I should agree with him, if, instead of saying that we were altogether to withdraw our military force from a certain class of colonies which it is difficult to define in any way, and impossible to define in a resolution, he had said that there were some colonies in which our military garrisons were too great, and in which the people themselves might furnish sufficient militia to suppress any internal disturbances, and to maintain internal tranquillity. Most of the Members of the House have probably seen despatches from Earl Grey—one despatch referring to Now South Wales, and another despatch, written very lately, and referring to the Government of Canada. Both these despatches were to the effect that the colonies ought to contribute in great part to their military defence, and that the amount of force that was kept up five or six years ago need not be kept up now to the extent which it has hitherto been; and there is no doubt that, on making these reductions, corresponding reductions of stores and other accompanying expenses would likewise take place. But this must be done with very great caution; it must be done gradually, it must be done from time to time, according to the circumstances of the colony to which you think fit to apply this rule. And one of the main faults that I find with this proposed Resolution is, that having from thirty five to forty colonies of different classes, inhabited by different races, of totally different circumstances—that it proposes to apply to the whole of them the same rule without distinction, without making any allowance for those obvious differences which prevail amongst them. With regard to Canada, that which you can do now, it would have been madness to have done ten or fifteen years ago. With regard to some of the other colonies, that which you could not do now, you may be able to do five or ten years hence. But I contend that these are questions upon which the House of Commoas had better not lay down any general rule or resolution. They are questions to be decided from time to time, always under the supervision and control of this House; but I trust when I say under the supervision and control of this House, that that supervision and control will be exercised with a view to maintain and to defend the integrity of this mighty empire, and not with a view merely to diminish the cost of defending our colonies.

MR. HUME moved the adjournment of the Debate.

Debate adjourned till Tuesday next.

The House adjourned at a quarter after One o'clock.