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P A P E R S
PRESENTED TO PARLIAMENT, BY HIS MAJESTY'S
IN EXPLANATION OF THE MEASURES ADOPTED BY
HIS MAJESTY'S GOVERNMENT
FOR THE MELIORATION OF THE CONDITION OF
THE SLAVE POPULATION
IN HIS MAJESTY'S POSSESSIONS IN THE
WEST INDIES, ON THE CONTINENT OF SOUTH AMERICA,
Of CORRESPONDENCE between the Secretary of State for the Colonies and the Officers
administering the Governments in His Majesty's Possessions in the West Indies, on the Continent of South America, at the Cape of Good Hope, and the Mauritius.
JAMAICA: No. 1.-Copy of a Despatch from the Earl of Belmore to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 10 December 1830, (1 Enclosure)
p. 3 No. 2.--Copy of a Despatch from Viscount Goderich to the Earl of Belmore, dated 23d February 1831, (1 Enclosure)
ibid. ST. CHRISTOPHER: No. 3.--Copy of a Despatch from Governor Maxwell to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 7 July 1830, (20 Enclosures)
p. 14 No.4.--Copy of a Despatch from Governor Maxwell to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 7 July 1830, (17 Enclosures)
p. 40 No. 5.--Copy of a Despatch from Viscount Goderich to Governor Maxwell, dated 4 De
cember 1830 No. 6.-Copy of a Despatch from Viscount Goderich to Lord Combermere, dated 19 De
cember 1830 No. 7.--Copy of a Letter from Lord Combermere to Viscount Goderich, dated Combermere Abbey, 22 December 1830
BARBADOS: No. 8.—Copy of a Despatch from Governor Sir J. Lyon to Viscount Goderich, dated 12 January 1831, (1 Enclosure)
ANTIGUA: No. 9.—Copy of a Despatch from Governor Sir P. Ross to Viscount Goderich, dated 22 January 1831
ST. VINCENT: No. 10.--Copy of a Despatch from the Officer administering the Government to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 23 September 1830, (i Enclosure)
p. 67 No. 11.-Copy of a Despatch from the Officer administering the Government to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 24 October 1830
P. 69 TRINIDAD: No. 12.-Copy of a Despatch from Major-General Grant to Secretary Sir George Murray dated 16 April 1830
p. 69 DEMERARA: No. 13.--Copy of a Despatch from Sir B. D'Urban to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated i May 1830, (2 Enclosures)
p. 70 No. 14.-Copy of a Despatch from Sir George Murray to Sir B. D'Urban, dated 13 November 1830
p.79 BERBICE: No. 15.--Copy of a Despatch from Lieutenant-Governor Beard to Secretary Sir George
Murray, dated 15 April 1830, (2 Enclosures) No. 16.—Copy of a Despatch from Lieutenant-Governor Beard to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 15 May 1830, (3 Enclosures)
ST. LUCIA: No. 17.--Copy of a Despatch from the Officer administering the Government to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 7 April 1830
P. 93 No. 18.—Copy of a Despatch from the Officer administering the Government to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 1 May 1830, (1 Enclosure)
ibid. No. 19.—Copy of a Despatch from the Officer administering the Government to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated 4 June 1830, (1 Enclosure)
BERMUDA: No. 20.-Copy of an Act to prolong an Act, intituled, “ An Act to Ameliorate the Condition of Slaves and Free Persons of Colour
CAPE OF GOOD HOPE: No. 21.-Copy of a Despatch from Sir Lowry Cole to Secretary Sir George Murray, dated
28 August 1830, (10 Enclosures) No. 22.--Copy of a Despatch from Viscount Goderich to Sir Lowry Cole, dated 18 December 1830
MAURITIUS: No. 23.--Copy of a Despatch from Lieutenant-General Sir Charles Colville to Secretary
Sir George Murray, dated 7 October 1830, (2 Enclosures) No. 24.-Copy of a Despatch from Viscount Goderich to Lieutenant-General Sir Charles
Colville, dated 28 February 1831, (1 Enclosure)
- p. 84
• p. 118
WEST INDIES, SOUTH AMERICA, CAPE OF GOOD HOPE,
COPY of a DESPATCH from the Earl of Belmore to Secretary Sir George
Murray; with One Enclosure.
King's House, Jamaica, 10th December 1830.
you to my Speech at the opening of the present session, I have now the honour to enclose a copy of my Message to the House of 12th ultimo, which accompanied your despatch of Sth April last.
It is with the deepest regret I am to acquaint you, that the Slave Bill which had been introduced into the House was thrown out on the second reading, by a majority of 24 to 16.
An attempt was made yesterday to bring this subject again under the consideration of the House, in the form of a Bill for the admission of Slave Evidence; but it was decided to be contrary to the rule of the House to revive a question, once disposed of, during the same session, and the Bill was lost.
I have, &c. Right Hon. Sir George Murray.
I am commanded by his Excellency the Governor to bring down to the House the copy of a Despatch from the Colonial Office, stating the objections of His Majesty's Government to certain clauses in the Act of last session, intituled, “ An Act for the Government of Slaves,” which has since been disallowed by His Majesty's Order in Council, bearing date the 3d July last; and an extract of a Report made to His Majesty in Council by the Committee of Council, to whom His Majesty was pleased to refer the said Act.
- No. 2.
COPY of a DESPATCH from Viscount Goderich to the Earl of Belmore; with
One Enclosure, My Lord,
Downing-street, 23 February 1831. I ENCLOSE to your Lordship herewith copies of a Communication which I have received from Mr. James B. Wildman, the owner of an estate called Low Ground, in the parish of Clarendon, in Jamaica, complaining of cruelties committed by a person named M‘Donald, the proprietor of an estate called North Hall, upon an elderly female slave named Eleanor James, belonging to Mr. Wildman's estate. 230.
Your Lordship will perceive by the documents annexed to Mr. Wildman's letter, that the circumstances of the case are stated as follows : Eleanor James states that “ Butler, a negro man belonging to Mr. M'Donald, bought a hog from her for his master : the payment having been delayed, she dunned the man, and he told her that his master would not pay unless she applied to himself. She accordingly went to North Hall in the evening of the 28th of November, accompanied by another negro woman named Joanna Williams, also belonging to Low Ground, and applied to Mr. M‘Donald for payment of the hog: he instantly ordered her to be taken a short distance from his dwelling-house, and there, he himself superintending, to be laid down and flogged. She was flogged by two drivers in succession ; the first used a whip, the second used switches: she was afterwards raised and washed with salt pickle. Mrs. M ́Donald, the wife of M.Donald, and her sister, were in the dwelling-house, and heard the order given to flog her; the sister interceded : there was also a white young man present, who was walking in or near the piazza when the order was given. The morning after, M‘Donald sent her two dollars, and ordered her to leave the property; she did so; and went immediately to Low Ground, and showed herself to Francis Smith, a free black man, who is permitted to reside on the estate.”
Joanna Williams, a slave on the same plantation with Eleanor James, states, that " she went with Eleanor James to North Hall and heard M‘Donald order Eleanor James to be flogged; she (Joanna Williams) instantly concealed herself among the bushes, and thus escaped notice. Saw Mrs. M'Donald, her sister, and a young man, whose name she thinks is M‘Leay; heard Mrs. M'Donald's sister intercede. The flogging took place so near the house that those in it must have heard the
She kept a tally of the stripes, and counted 200, that is, she counted ten for each finger on both hands, and went over both hands twice. She saw the salt pickle applied to the wounds. The lash of the whip was dipped in water.”
The same person, Joanna Williams, states, in a deposition made on the 3d April 1830, that “he, Mr. M‘Donald, observing that Butler did not flog her to his satisfaction, he called a brown man, named Edward, who then flogged her. As Eleanor James was getting the flogging, she asked for water, when he, Mr. M'Donald, told her, the devil a bit of water he would give her, he did not care if she died on the spot, he did not care about her master, for if he was put in the jailhouse he would have to maintain him, as he, her master, (meaning Mr. Wildman) had plenty of money. After the flogging had ceased, he ordered her to be washed with a salt mixture, which being done, ordered them to take her and throw her away at the
The circumstances thus deposed to are stated to have taken place on the 28th November 1829. It is stated by Mr. Taylor, Mr. Wildman's attorney, that at this time a severe sickness was prevalent amongst the white persons on Low Ground estate; that the overseer was alarmingly ill, and he himself incapacitated by fever from pressing for an investigation into the case. The book-keeper, however, Mr. John Bellew, was ordered to take Eleanor James, together with Joanna Williams, as a witness, to Mr. John M‘Leod, a magistrate in the neighbourhood, for the purpose of asking his advice, and of obtaining a warrant against the negroes of North Hall Plantation, who had been the instruments of the cruel treatment inflicted upon Eleanor James. Mr. M‘Leod declined issuing the warrant, and recommended Mr. Bellew to take Eleanor James to Mr. Townsend's, the clerk of the peace for the parish of Clarendon, who resided at a distance of 30 miles from Low Ground
Mr. Bellew followed this advice, but on arriving at Mr. Townsend's, found that he was confined to bed in consequence of a serious accident.
No further steps seem to have been taken until the 12th of January 1830, when Mr. Taylor, having so far recovered from the effects of his fever as to enable him to travel, went to Low Ground estate, examined Eleanor James and the other persons who were cognizant of the circumstances, and took notes of the facts which they were prepared to substantiate, in order that the case might be submitted for the opinion of the proprietor's legal adviser. By his advice, Mr. Taylor applied to Mr. French the Custos of the parish, to summon a Council of Protection, which assembled accordingly on the 3d or 4th of February; but it appeared that there had been some informality in the formation of this Council of Protection, and though witnesses were examined by it, it did nothing. Another Council of Protection therefore was summoned for the 18th of February, but as a sufficient number of members