§ On Motion that the Bill be now read 3a,
said that, although he regarded the measure as an improvement on the existing law, he doubted if it went far enough. He would venture to refer to a discussion that had taken place on a previous night, for the purpose of saying that he was perfectly persuaded, from information he had received, and part of it from official sources, that the persons who 994 were on board the Regina Cœli were not free negroes, or Liberians, but slaves who had been liberated for the sole purpose of being embarked as nominally free negroes, and that they had come, not from Liberia, but from the well-known slave district of Mannoo, the chief of which was one of the most determined slave traders who ravaged that part of the African coast.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
thought it was most unfortunate that the noble and learned Lord had not made this statement when his noble Friend the Secretary for Foreign Affairs was in his place, who, he understood, took quite a different view of the subject. He (the Earl of Derby) did not mean to say a word in favour of the system of French emigration; but he believed his noble Friend had shown the noble and learned Lord a paper, by which it appeared that the persons on board the Regina Cœli had been mustered or raised within the districts of Monrovia and Liberia, and not in the district to which the noble and learned Lord had referred.
The paper which the noble Earl had shown him certainly treated the Regina Cœli as a slaver.
§ Bill read 3a; an Amendment made.
§ Bill passed, and sent to the Commons.
§ House adjourned at Eight o'clock, to Thursday next, half-past Ten o'clock.