« PrécédentContinuer »
As we are desirous that the Herald of Peace should comprize every thing of importance, more or less connected with peace on earth and good-will to men, we purpose to select, from the current intelligence of every preceding Quarter, those circumstances which may with propriety be inserted in our pages....... For the sake of order, we shall as often as it is practicable, class them under different heads. The Slave Trade and Duelling will be conspicuous divisions, so long as these practices are continued. We shall also notice the low-lived, disgraceful custom of Boxing. On the other hand, we hope frequently to record incidents which, so far from deserving the lash of reprobation, we may exhibit to the view of our Readers as worthy their approval and imi-We begin with
The Slave Trade.
In the Chamber of Deputies [Paris] on Wednesday, 3d of April, when the debate on the estimates for the Colonial Expenditure was resumed, M. Boscal de Reals proposed a reduction of 1,200,000 francs in the establishment for Senegal, which, if broken up altogether, would be a matter of great consolation to the friends of humanity. In alluding to the motion for reduction, M. Constant reproached Ministers for not taking effectual measures to suppress the Slave Trade: He broadly asserted that the inhuman traffic was openly carried on; that persons honoured with the confidence of the King were accomplices in the criminal traffic, and that negroes were purchased for Senegal, who were branded in the shoulder with marks shewing that they belonged to his Majesty. M. de Vaublanc endeavoured to show that all practical means were adopted by Ministers to suppress the Slave Trade. The Minister of Marine said, as to the infamous Slave Trade,
France had nothing to reproach herself with. Twenty-two slave ships had already been condemned, and 18 were under judicial process; 14 had been released. There was no necessity for more rigorous enactments: all that was required was the active enforcement of the existing laws.
A series of papers relative to the Slave Trade on the coast of Africa, has been recently printed by order of the House of Commons. It consists of three letters from Sir Charles M'Carthy, the Governor of Sierra Leone, which prove the increased state of that horrible traffic. A memorandum, enclosed in one of these letters, dated Sierra Leone, 22d January 1822, describing the proceedlast six months on the leeward coast, ings of the British cruisers for the states that the Myrmidon, Captain Leeke, on arriving at the Bonny, found that river swarming with slave vessels, under different flags, eight of them French, of which four had their inhuman cargoes on board. Captain Leeke had also ascertained, on good authority, that the number of slave cargoes taken out of the Bonny, from July 1820, to October 1821, was actually 190; and a similar return from the Calabar, for a like period, made a total of 162. On the same coast, in October, the Snapper, Lieutenant Knight, in the course of ten days fell in with nine slave-ships, of which eight were French. The memorandum then proceeds to describe the state of the Slave Trade on the windward coast. The following is an extract:
"The renewal of the traffic in human beings on the windward coast must be viewed by every friend to humanity with deep regret; accompanied as that renewal has been, with
cruel wars amongst the hitherto peaceful natives: the arrival of a slave-ship, in any of the adjacent rivers is the signal for attack; the hamlets of the natives are burned, and the miserable survivors carried and sold to the slave-factors.
"The line of coast from the island of Goree to the mouth of the Gambia, and from thence to the Portuguese establishments of Cacheo and Bissao, would seem to be the principal seat of this guilty traffic to windward. From this quarter, in addition to the extraordinary exportation in large vessels, a very extensive carrying trade is kept up with the Cape de Verd Islands, principally by the small craft belonging to Goree and Senegal. "The slave-traders at Cacheo have lately given their traffic in the Rio Grande a new feature of barbarous atrocity; they visit this river in armed sloops and boats, landing during the night, and carrying off as many as possible of the truly wretched inhabitants. An appeal to this colony has been lately made on behalf of three villages lately ravaged in this
"The fine rivers Nunez and Pongas are entirely under the controul of renegado Europeans and American slave-traders: most of the slaves sent from the former river find their way to Cacheo and the Cape de Verds, from whence it is said they are shipped as domestics to the Brazils.
"A French schooner, M. Dees, master, took on board ninety-five slaves; and a Spaniard, commanded by one Morales, also shipped 160, some time since, in the Rio Pongas. This river not long ago was considered too near this colony to be approached with impunity by slave vessels. A general idea of the traffic to windward may therefore be formed from the circumstance, that latterly a great number of slaves have been exported from the Pongas, and that slave vessels may always be found lying there."
By Jamaica papers to the 24th April last. It appears, by letters from Sierra Leone, that the Slave-trade was still carried on by Portuguese and French in that part of the world' to an enormous extent. It was calculated that 101 sail of slave vessels fully laden, and under Spanish, Portuguese, and French colours, had sailed from the Calabar from July to November 1820; and 120 sail under the same colours, and during the same period, from Barmy. Besides these a very considerable number had sailed from Bombia and Cameroons.
Further Papers relating to the Slave Trade have been laid before the House of Commons. They are too long for insertion, or even for an abstract to be given. The first series consists of correspondence with France, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and the United States; and the second, of correspondence with his Majesty's Commissioners at Sierra Leone, Havannah, and Surinam. With the French Government, the urgent applications of the British Secretary of State, and Ambassador, do not appear to have been peculiarly successful; for the correspondence concludes with a letter of Lord Londonderry, dated 26th of March 1822, enumerating a formidable list of offences by French vessels, and concluding with an injunction to Sir Charles Stewart to urge the propriety of following in France the example set by the Spanish Cortes, who have made it felony for a native of that country to be engaged in the Slave Trade. The correspondence with the Netherlands concludes with a letter from Lord Clancarty, in which he states, that he had, on the 21st of March, a most satisfactory conference with the Minister for the Colonies, who admitted, that by the Treaty between Great Britain and the Netherlands, the Slave Trade was entirely forbidden to the subjects of both countries, and declared that the
measures which he had taken, under the orders of the King, were such as to ensure the full execution of the Treaty...... In the correspondence with Portugal, the Marquis of Londonderry proposes "that a declaration should be issued in the spirit of the Treaty, by the powers concerned, purporting, that if there should be a proof that a slave or slaves had been, for the purpose of illegal traffic, put on board a vessel in the course of the voyage in which she was captured, such vessel might justifiably be detained by the cruisers, and finally be condemned by the Commissioners." In the correspondence with Spain we observe nothing of importance, except the article of the Criminal Code already noticed. That with the United States relates principally to the establishment of a mutual right of search.... Dispatches have been sent to the Governments of Denmark, Sweden, and Holland, complaining of facilities afforded to the Slave Trade in the islands of St. Thomas, St. Bartholomew, and St. Eustatias.
Slave Trade Suppression.-A Report was made to the American Senate on this subject on the 12th of April last. It confirms a former Report to Congress, on the enormity to which the trade has been lately carried, and recommends, as the only effectual remedy, "the concurrence of the United States with one or all the Maritime Powers of Europe in a modified and reciprocal right of search on the African Coast.
A letter received from a resident at Guadaloupe, states, that on the 29th October 1820, were landed there 209 slaves, eight having died on the voyage, and were disposed of at 150l. per head. On the 18th November in the same year, were landed at Capistern, in Guadaloupe, about 200 slaves. There can be nothing, he says, which prevents the seizure of these vessels but a good understand
ing with the Custom-house officers, or the private instructions of the Governor to favour this criminal traffic.
On the 24th of February 1821, arrived the brig Fox at the same island, after the absence of a year, with a cargo of 300 slaves (28 having destroyed themselves during the voyage) and were all sold except about SO, the following Sunday, for 150l. per head on an average. In this manner are many thousand slaves introduced into Gaudaloupe. He further says, that seamen have a great temptation to go on the Slave Trade; that they receive from 20 to 30 dollars per month, and some have to receive on their return 200 dollars balance of wages; and con cludes his communication with expressing his horror and indignation when he has to relate that the Sabbath is the day on which, generally speaking, the sale of slaves takes place. He adds, that he could have caused one of the vessels abovementioned to have been seized, could he have calculated on the support of the Government of the Island. of what avail would my denunciation be? Instead of being attended to, it would prove ruinous to my commercial interest, and the detection of my interference would most assuredly subject me to assassination; or if my life escaped, I should at least be banished from the island never to return, which would be very destructive to my present prospects."―(Paris Monthly Review March 1822.) .
Slave Trade. Who can read,. without a blush for enlightened Europe, the allusion to the proceedings of the South American Governments in this particular, made at the Anniversary of the African Institution the other day, in the speeches of the Duke of Gloucester and Mr. Stephen?" In the year 1808," said the illustrious Duke, " General Bolivar, with whom I have the pleasure of a personal acquaintance, gave me
his word, that as soon as the independence of his country should be established, the Slave Trade should be abolished throughout it, and he has nobly redeemed his pledge." Now this has not been done in Columbia, by laws unequal to their purpose, but, as Mr. Stephen detailed in his speech, by means which secure beyond all doubt the progressive emancipation of every slave now living, and prevent the possibility of any increase of the race, by making the children of slaves for the future free from their birth. This is proceeding in good earnest. The French Government has only to pursue the object in the same spirit, with the same determination of purpose; and, although it may disappoint the cravings of an insatiable cupidity, and baffle the calculations of the coldblooded dealer in human flesh, it will find itself in the end no loser either in wealth or in character.—(Philanthropic Gazette, May 29, 1822.)
Ir is with the deepest and most painful regret that in countries calling themselves Christian, we should have to record frequent instances of a practice which all acknowledge to be barbarous and antichristian; but which Noblemen, Senators, Magistrates, and Officers naval and military, professing themselves the disciples of Jesus Christ, dare to observe. It is a crime of the deepest dye. It combines the two dreadful violations of law human and divine-Murder and Suicide, Nor shall we cease to hold it up as a foul blot in our domestic history, as well as in the annals of every other nation in Christendom where it prevails.
Mr. Gilchrist, in his "Brief Display of the Origin and History of Ordeals," gives the following melancholy history of Duels :
It appears, that in 172 combats, including 344 individuals, 69 persons were killed; that in three of these,
neither of the combatants survived; that 96 were wounded, 48 of them desperately, and 48 slightly; and that 188 escaped unhurt. From this statement it will be seen that rather more than one-fifth of the combatants lost their lives, and that nearly onehalf received the bullets of their antagonists. It appears also, that only 18 trials took place; that six of the arraigned were acquitted, seven found guilty of manslaughter, and three of murder; that two were executed, and eight imprisoned for-different periods.
Duel.-On Tuesday (March 26th,) forenoon, about eleven o'clock, a meeting took place at Auchtertool, near Balmuto, in Fifeshire, between Sir Alexander Boswell, of Auchenleck, Bart. and James Stuart, Esq. of Duncarn. Sir Alexander was attended by the Hon. John Douglas, brother of the Marquis of Queensberry; and Mr. Stuart by the Earl of Rosslyn. The parties fired by signal, and Sir Alexander received his antagonist's shot in the spine. Sir Alexander was carried to Balmuto House, where he was attended by Lady Boswell, Professor Thomson, and several surgeons of the first eminence. The ball had not been extracted on Wednesday; and though Sir Alexander was still alive, yet he was considered in extreme danger; indeed the spine has been so severely injured as to leave no hopes of recovery. The cause of the quarrel was a libel which appeared in The Glasgow Sentinel, the Editor of which gave up the author.Sir A. Boswell survived but 24 hours.
Duelling in Scotland. When a duel takes place upon a challenge, and is followed by the death of one of the parties, this, according to the law of Scotland, as well as the law of England, is murder on the survivor, how fair and equal soever the manner of conducting the combat. But the better to suppress such irregularities, the legislature, by the sta
tute 1600, cap. 12, raised the bare act of engaging in a duel to the same rank of a capital crime, as the actual slaughter, without distinguishing whether any of the parties did or did not suffer any wound or material harm on the occasion. There is no doubt that, by analogy, the act called Lord Ellenborough's Act would apply in the same way in England. To complete, however, the restraint, it was by statute 1696, c. 35, made punishable with banishment and escheat of moveables, to be concerned in the giving, sending, or accepting of a challenge, even though no combat should ensue -Hume, vol. 2, p. 281.
It is a singular coincidence that Sir Alex. Boswell should have first proposed the repeal of these acts. On the 31st of March, 1818, on his moving "that leave be given to bring in a bill to repeal certain acts of Parliament of Scotland regarding duelling," after some observations on the Scots Acts in general, and stating that they might be divided into four classes, one of which was that of "Statutes held to be in force of an objectionable nature," he added, " he wished to confine himself at present to moving the repeal of one statute of an exceptionable nature a statute with respect to duels, on which an individual had lately been tried. By this statute a person sending or bearing a challenge to fight a duel forfeited all his moveable property, and suffered banishment, whether the duel took place or not." The bill passed into a law.
It is not true, as stated in some of the newspapers, that no fatal duel has taken place in Scotland since Sir G. Ramsay's in 1790. Mr. Livington shot Mr. Booth in the neighbourhood of Aberdeen, about 1804. In 1810, Surgeon Cahill, 25th Foot, shot Captain Rutherford, at Haddington; and was afterwards tried for murder by the High Court of Justiciary, when the Jury, by a plurality of voices,
found Mr. Cahill "Not Guilty.". Scotch paper.
Edinburgh, June 10.-This forenoon the Court met, and proceeded to the trial of James Stuart, Esq. accused of being the principal in the duel in which Sir Alex, Boswell of Auchinlech, was mortally wounded, on the 26th March last.
Mr. Stuart entered the Court at ten A. M. accompanied by his relatives, the Earl of Moray, and D. Erskine, Esq. of Cardross. The Judges took their seats with the usual forms.
The Indictment was of great length, and charged Mr. Stuart with having formed a design to challenge others beside Sir A. Boswell, which the Judge considered unprecedented, as well as irrelevant, and ordered it to be struck out. The trial then proceeded, and the particulars of the fatal duel were detailed by the two seconds, Lord Rosslyn and Mr. Douglas, precisely the same in substance as has already been given to the public. It appeared that Sir Alexander said, Mr. Stuart could not do less than call him out, and that although he (the deceased) refused to make any apology by which the duel might have been avoided, yet it was his intention to fire in the air, as the best apology he could make.
Several other witnesses were examined, who proved the fairness of the manner in which the duel was conducted, and the way in which the papers were got from Borthwick, who was imprisoned on the 1st of March, for a debt of 50l. which his agent at Hamilton discovered was not due, but which he paid under protest. Finding that an action of damages was raised against Mr. Borthwick by Mr. Stuart, his agent applied to Mr. Stuart, and offered to produce the libels against him if he would abandon the action, but he would make no promise to that effect. Mr. Stuart accompanied Borthwick's agent to Glasgow, and had the MSS. of the "Sentinel" put into