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liament to be highly advantageous to those colonies; and that an immediate Great Britain, and necessary for supplying consequence of the abolition will be the her plantations and colonies with a suffi- loss of the white population of the colocient number of negroes; and that the nies, at present composing the militia, the British West India colonies were settled, principal defence of the country, by taking and have ever been cultivated, under the away the hope and the means of bettering solemn faith of those charters and procla- their fortunes, their only inducement for mations, and of those laws which have con- venturing to those islands; and that many firmed the West India colonists in the most persons in the West India colonies, already perfect assurance and confidence that they settled and attached to the soil, will, from should continue to obtain supplies of ne- the same causes, emigrate to countries groes from Africa; and that the cultiva- where they will meet with more encouragetion of those colonies cannot be carried on ment and protection; and that those who without supplies of African negroes; and must, from necessity, remain, will be left that the settling of the interior of those exposed to all the calamities attendant islands, which is greatly conducive to their upon revolt and insurrection; and that the safety, cannot be promoted, if the slave operation of the bill, if it shall pass into a trade shall be abolished; and that, if the law, will be to violate the system of colobill should be passed into a law, the worst nial law, relative to property, the provisions consequences will ensue from it, destructive of families, and the securities of creditors; not only to the properties of the British and that the petitioners assure the house, planters, and of their creditors, whose for- that their statements are founded on the tunes have assisted in cultivating the plan- basis of truth; that they are advanced by tations in the West Indies, and are now se- those, whose local knowledge, and whose cured upon them, but also deeply injurious due and fair regard to their own welfare, to the interests of the British empire at afford them the best opportunities of formlarge, as all descriptions of property in this ing correct conclusions, and that they can kingdoin must suffer most severely by the be established by evidence; and that the effects of a plan that shall operate to de- agitation of the question of an abolition of stroy the great capital invested in the British the slave trade is at all times pregnant with West India colonies, and to cut off a com- great mischiet'; and that the petitioners merce which pays in duties annually to must view, with peculiàr alarm, a renewed Great Britain upwards of three millions, discussion of that question, at a period employs more than sixteen thousaud sea- when the existence of a black power, in men, contributes one third to her whole the neighbourhood of the most important exports, and one third to hier imports, con- British island in the West Indies, affording sumes annually of her manufactures and a memorable and dreadful lesson, recorded produce six millions, and which is pre- in characters of blood, of the issue of doceminently distinguished as the most secure trines intimately, constantly, and inseparaand independant source of national prospe- bly connected with the abolition of the rity, and a principal support of the naval slave trade, ought most powerfully to have superiority of this country; and that this inculcated the necessity of discountenancing measure, if it should be carried into effect, all such discussions, which tend to alienale must diminish, in a very few years, the pro- the minds of the negroes in the Britisha perty invested in the British West India West India colonies from a state of suborislands, and open the means of hastening dination, and which hold forth no prospect the progress of rival colonies ; must forbid whatever of real good, but, on the contrary, the supply of losses of negro population, if persevered in, will be a fruitful source of which general causes, or accidents, or dis- enormous evil; and that the petitioners eases peculiar to the climate, occasion, and shrink, with horror, from a contemplation which humane and provident management of those scenes, which that country has is unavailing to prevent; must stop the frightfully exhibited; and that confiscation completion of establishments already begun, cannot be authorized without proof of deat a great expence, and put an end to the linquency; and that the characters of the increase of small settlers in the interior of petitioners have been traduced, but deline the islands, so necessary for their security;quency has never been proved; and that the and, in short, must inflict extreme present petitioners, duly weighing these considera: injury, and eventual decay and ruin, upon tions, and apprized of the constant exer
tions displayed by the commons in parlia- | sue from it, destructive not only to the proment assembled, is raising this country to perties of his constituents, and the propriits present state of power and security, are etors of the other British West India colodesirons of expressing their reliance, that nies, and of their creditors, whose fortunes the wise interposition of the house will re- have assisted in cultivating the plantations ject a measure, which cannot be adopted in the West Indies, and are now secured without occasioning so great a sacrifice of upon them, but also deeply injurious to the the national resources, at a juncture when interests of the British empire at large, as those resources are more than ever neces- all descriptions of property in this kingdom sary to enable the country to make head must sutter most severely by the effects of against the most formidable enemy it ever a plan that shall operate to destroy the had io contend with; and therefore pray- great capital invested in the British West ing, that the said bill may not pass into a India colonies, and to cut off a commerce law; and that they may be heard, at the which pays annually in duties upwards of bar of the house, by themselves, or their three millions to Great Britain, employs counsel, against the same, and that they more than sixteen thousand seamen, conmay be permitted to produce evidence." tributes one third to her whole exports,
A Petition of Edmund Pusey Lyon, esq. and one third of her imports, consumes anagent for the island of Jamaica, was also mually of her manufactures and produce presented to the house, and read; setting six millions, and which is pre-eminently forth, " That the petitioner observes with distinguished as the most secure and indethe deepest concern and alarm, that a bill pendent source of national prosperity, and for the Abolition of the Slave Trade has a principal support of the naval superiority passed the house of lords, and is now de- of this country; and that this measure, if pending before this house ; and that the it should be carried into effect, must difatal tendency of the measure of abolishing minish in a very few years the property inthe slave trade, and the destructive conse- vested in Jamaica, and the other British quences which must result from its acco West India islands, and open the means of plishment, have impelled the petitioner's hastening the progress of rival colonies, constituents to instruct him to give the must forbid the supply of losses of negro inost strenuous opposition to this bill; and population, which general causes, or accithat the traile to Africa for labourers has dents or diseases peculiar to the climate been for a great number of years sanction- occasion, and which bumane and provied, approved, and encouraged, by royal dent management is unavailing to precharters and proclamations, and by repeated vent; must stop the completion of esta-, acts of the British legislature, which declare blishments already begun at a great exin the strongest terms a most anxious de- pence, and put an end to the increase of sire to regulate, extend, secure, and pre- small settlers in the interior of the islands, serve this trade, pronounced by parliament so necessary for their security; and, in to be highly advantageous to Great Britain, short, must inflict extreme injury and and neeessary for supplying her plantations eventual decay and ruin upon those coloand colonies with a sufficient number of nies ; and that an immediate consequence negroes; and that the British West India of the abolition will be, the loss of the colonies were settled, and bave ever been white population of the colonies, at precultivated under the solemn faith of those sent composing the militia, the principal charters and proclamations, and of those defence of the country, by taking away the laws which have confirmed the West India hope and the means of bettering their forcolonists in the most perfect assurance and tunes, their only inducement for venturing confidence, that they should continue to to i hose islands; and that many persons in obtain supplies of negroes from Africa; the British West India colonies, already and that the cultivation of the island of settled and attached to the soil, will from Jamaica cannot be carried on without sup- the same causes emigrate to countries plies of African vegroes; and that the set where they will meet with more encouragetling of the interior of that colony, which ment and protection ; and that those who is greatly conducive to its safety, cannot be must from necessity remain, will be left expromoted if the slave trade shall be abo- posed to all the calamities attendant upon lished; and that if the bill should be passed revolt and insurrection; and that the opeinto a law, the worst consequences will en- ration of the bill, if it should pass into a
law, will be to violate the system of colo- mitted to produce evidence in support of nial law relative to property, the provi- the case of his constituents." sions of families, and the securities of cre- A petition of the planters, merchants, ditors; and that the petitioner assures the and others of the city of Glasgow, conhouse, that his stalements are founded onnected with the island of Trinidad, was the basis of truth, that they are the result also presenied to the house, and read; setof the full and mature consideration of his ting forth, that the petitioners were inconstituents, whose local knowledge, and duced to invest their capital in the settling whose due and fair regard to their own of lands in the said island of Trinidad, upon welfare, afford then the best o poriunities the faithof i he assurances held out by his maof forming correct conclusions; and i hat jesty's government, when it was ceded to they can be established by evidence; and this country, that they would be allowed to that the agitation of the question of the clearandcultivatethepropertyin the manner abolition of the slave trade is at all mes pastially practised in the West India islands, pregnant with great mischief'; and that the by the labour of negro slaves, which alore petitioner must view wiib peculiar aların is adapied for that purpose; and that, by The renewed discussion of that question, at the bill now pending for abolishing the slave a period when the existence of a black trade, the importation of negroes into this power in the neighbourhood of the island new colony is prohibited; and, if it should of Jamaica, affording a memorable and pass into a law, the interest of the petidreadful lesson recorded in characters of ioners will be most materially affected, the blood, of the issue of doctrines intimately, capital sunk in the improvement of the constantly, and inseparably connected with lands will be greatly diminished, if not althe abolition of the slave trade, ought most together lost, and the time and labour alpowerfully to have inculcated the necessity ready consunied in the prospect of future of discountenancing all such discussions, and distant returns will be totally miswhich tend to alienate the minds of the spent; the petitioners therefore repose in nogroes in the British West India colonies the good faith of his majesty's government, from a state of subordination, and which bold upon which his subjects have always had forth no prospect whatever of real good, but the surest grounds to rely, and upon which on the contrary, it persevered in, will be a the petitioners in particular acted with the fruitful source of enormous evil; aud that most unlimiied confidence when embarkthe petitioner shrinks with horror from a ing on this business, that such consequericontemplation of those scenes which that ces will be averted, and that the interest country has frightfully exhibited; and that of the settlers in this colony will be preconfiscation cannot be authorized without served; and therefore praying, that the proof of delinquency; and that the clia- house will give permission to import negro racters of the petitioner's constituents lave slaves into the said island until the lands been traduced, but delinquency has never actually granted have been duly and suftibeen proved; and that the petitioner, duly ciently supplied, or to permit the petitionweighing these considerations, and apprized ers to be lieard, by counsel at the bar, for of the constant exertions displayed by the their special interest, or to take such other commons in parliament assembled, in rais- means for their relief as to the boufe may ing this country to its present state of pow- seem meet.” er and security, is desirous of expressing A petition of John Anderson and Alexhis reliance, that the wise interposition of ander Anderson, of Philpot Lane, London, the house will reject a measure, which merchants, proprietors of Bance Island, in cannot be adopted without occasioning so the river Sierra Leone, on the windward great a sacrifice of the national resources, coast of Africa, was also presented to the at a juncture when those resources are house, and read; setting forth, " that by more than ever necessary to enable the an act, made in the 25th year of his late country to make head against the most majesty, intituled, " an act for the appliformidable enemy it ever had to contend cation of a sum of money therein mentionwith; and the petitioner therefore prays, ed, granted to his majesty, making comthat the said bill may not pass into a law: pensation and satisfaction to the Royal Afand that he may be heard at the bar of rican Company of England;" “ that wherethe house, by bimself or his counsel, as it appears, that a certain island, situate against the same ; and that he may be per- in the river Sierra Leone, on the said coast of Africa, called Bance Island, with a fort I have no otlier means of making paynent and buildings thereon, having been for- but by slaves ; and therefore praying, that merly in the possession of the said Royal the said act may not pass into a law, and African Company, was, in the year 1728, that they may be heard by counsel, and deserted by the said company and their they hope their prayer will not seem agents; and the said fort has been some unreasonable, considering they 'hold the time in ihe possession of Alexander Grant, property under an act of parliament, in John Sargent, and Richard Oswald, of which is acknowledged the justice of reLondon, Merchants, who liave disbursed a compence to the proprietors, for the moconsiderable sum in the preservation and ney disbursed in the preservation and imimprovements of the said island and fort, provement of the said island." —And the for which it is just and reasonable they said petitions were severally ordered to lie should have a recompence: Be it therefore . upon the table, until the engrossed bill enacied, that the said Alexander Grant, from the lords, intituled “ an act for the John Sargent, and Richard Oswald, shall abolition of the Slave Trade,” be read a be at liberty, noiwithstanding the present second time; and that the petitioners be act, to continue in the quiet possessiou of then heard by their counsel, agents, and the said island, fort, and buildings ihereon, witnesses, against the said bill, upon their and that the same shall henceforth conti- petitions, if they think fit. nue and be absolutely vested in them, [SCOTCH CLERGY.] The Lord Advotheir heirs and assigns;" and that upon the cate rose, pursuant to notice, to bring forfaith and right granted, and the proiec- ward a motion upon this subject. The tion afforded to them by the said act, the noble lord, after some remarks upon the sai Alexander Grant, John Sargent and propriety of enabling the clergy to preserve Richard Oswald, established large facto- that independence of circumstauces, and ries upon the said island, called Bance Is- that decency of appearance which were neland, with inany dependent faciories in cessary to secure the due deference of their the neighbourhood, and laid out and in-station, and not untrequently to give effect vested a very great capital therein ; and to their instructions, called the attention of that the petitioners afterwards purchased the committee to the manner in which the the right and interest of the personis.enti- clergy were provided for in Scotland. In tled to the said island, with the slaves and many instances their provision was extremeother properiy thereon, and are now the ly inadequate, and his object was to remove sole proprietors thereof; and that in the that inadequacy. With a view to that, he year 1791, by an invasion of American conceived it necessary that the cominission and French subjects, the property of the of Teinds, which had heretofore belonged petitioners, in the said island alone, to the to the court of session, should be transferamount of 20,0001. sterling, and upwards, red to the court of exchequer. was destroyed, and the petitioners have son for this transfer must be obvious to since replaced, and laid out, the amount those who were at all acquainted with the of such property so destroyed; and that comparative engagements of these two the petitioners have, at great risque and courts.
In the court of session there was, labour, and at an immense expence, esta- in fact, such a crowd of business, that that blished a great trade at the said island, court had not leisure to attend to the dise. called Bance Island ; and that the Peti-charge of this commission, while the court tioners did so upon the assurance and be- of exchequer was fully enabled, without lief that, by the said act, the property of any inconvenience, to execute every thing the said island was as perfectly vested in, that appertained to it. The one court was and secured to them, as any other species really a bankrupt in its business to the of property which the subjects of these country, notwithstanding the extraordinary realis possess under the sanction and pro- activity and diligence of the judges, and tection of the law; and that the petition particularly that of the chief judge, who ers apprehend the bill now depending in was indeed a model of industry; while the parliament, to put an end to the slave other court was comparatively disengaged. trade, will render their property on Bance The removing therefore the superintendence Island of no value, and likewise prevent of teinds to a tribunal which bad time to their being able to collect the debts due to attend to it, was of course desirable. In them, as the people on the coast of Africa the next place, be proposed to create a
fund for the provision of the clergy, from Lord Archibald Hamilton considered the stipends received by patrons from the this a measure of the utmost importance. death of an incumbent to the induction of He had received many cominunications rehis successor.
Such receipts patrons bad specting it, and hoped that time would be heretofore disposed of for such purposes as allowed to all parties to investigate its they thought proper to consider pious; but merits. it was now generally felt, that the erection The Lord Advocate was disposed to acof the fund he had mentioned, would be cede to any period of delay that could be by much the most pious application of it. reasonably expected, and he had no doubt The noble lord concluded with moving "for that upon à fair consideration of its merits
, leave to bring in a bill for repealing certain, such persons as might at present misunderparts of the act of the parliament of Scot-stand it, would be reconciled to its proviland passed in the fourth session of the first sions. To afford therefore to any who opparliament of queen Anne, intitled, “ Act posed the measure an opportunity of coranent Plantation of Kirks and Valuation recting their errors, and amending their nt Teinds;' and for vesting in the Court of feelings, he proposed if the bill should be Eschequer in Scotland, the said powers: read a first time, to move that it be printei, and for regulating the proceedings of the and the second reading fixed for this day said Court of Exchequer, as to the exercise three weeks. The house having resumed, of such powers."
the report was receivedi, and the chairsan The Speaker observed, that as this nio obtained leave to bring in the bill moved tion concerned religion, the regular mode for hy the lord advocate. of proceeding, according to the standing (SUGAR DRAWBACKS.) On the moorder, would be to take it into considera- tion of lord Henry Petty the house re110v, in the first instance, in a committee solved itself into a committee of the whole of the whole house. After a few words house, to consider of granting relief to the from lord A. Hamilton, the house resolved West India Trade, Mr. Hobhouse in the into the comunittee suggested by the Spea- chair. ker, the resolution proposed was agreed to; Lord H. Petty stated to the comand on the house resuming, the chairman mittee, that as the subject which he was obtained leave to bring in the bill. about to bring under their consideration,
The house, after lord H. Petty had an- was so generally known, and the privciples nounced his majesty's acquiescence in the upon which the measures he proposed to measure, resolved itself into a similar com- adopt were grounded were so obvious, that mittee on the notion of the Lord Advo- it would be necessary for him to trouble cale; and the noble lord proposed that the committee with a very few words in}cave should be given to bring in a bill to deed. The great stock of sugar on hand, improve the stipends of such of the paro- arising partly from the situation of the chial Clergy of Scotland as ure precluded continent, and partly from other circumfrom farther augmentation by the exhians- stances, called for legislative interference, tion of their ieinds.
and the house he was sure, would take the Mr. W. Dundas lioped be should not necessary measures for that purpose. The be represented as hostile to the interests of object of the resolutions he had to propose the Scotch clergy, who were a nost respec- was, to encourage the exportation of sutable body, and for whom no man had a gars, and the consumption of rum. The higher respect than tre had, if he thought first he proposed to do by allowing bounit right to state here that in making a suit- ties, and permitting sugars, which might be able provision for their maintenance, re- taken out of the warehouses for home congard ought always to be had to the situa- sumption, to be returned to the warehouses tion in which the order had for two centu-for exportation, with proper provisions to ries stood, That situation was that of a prevent their being taken out again for middle rank, between the common people home consumption, without paying the neand the gentry, moderating the pride of the cessary duties. This regulation would latter and the turbulence of the former. have the effect of inducing foreiguers to He thought the application of the revenues make this country the depot for the supply of vacant benefices , might exceed the of the continent. The other object was to moderate and suitable provision he pro- be effected by laying an additional duty on posed.
brandy. This was the article of regulation