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conveniently barter for and embark a cargo of slaves, they proceed with that cargo generally direct to the island of Cuba. If they do not succeed at once in this barter, or if an opportunity for piracy previously presents itself, they seize the first vessel they meet with, preferring one that may be laden with slaves. Taking possession of the vessel, they murder or put on shore the White men found on board, and proceed with the vessel and cargo to Cuba, where they land the slaves surreptitiously at the back of the island, and then enter in ballast at the Havannah.
An instance is then mentioned, as having recently occurred, in which a prize, with an English prize-crew, had disappeared; murdered, as it is supposed, by these pirates.
The details furnished from the Havannah by our commissioners are still more opprobrious than those from Sierra Leone. The public functionaries there appear, in what concerns the Slave Trade, to feel the obligations neither of humanity nor of national faith, nor even of personal honour. Some of the cases are of a very aggravated description. In one case, a vessel, the Minerva, is chased into the harbour by two British ships of war. Notice is given of the fact to the civil and military authorities. Officers of the Captain-General's suite visit the ship, and see her living cargo. And notwithstanding all this, 200 slaves which were on board are landed in the presence and actual view of the British naval officers belonging to the ships which had chased her: and when this disgraceful proceeding is denounced, and the incontestible evidence of the facts laid before the local authorities, there instantly seems a concurrence among them to take no step to recover the slaves and punish the delinquents.
During the last fifteen years, the only pretence advanced by Portugal for refusing totally to abolish her
Slave Trade, has been the necessities of her trans-Atlantic possessions. Since the declaration of the independence of Brazil, this pretence has no longer existed. Portugal, nevertheless, has clung to the trade, and had advanced a claim to carry it on without molestation, from the coast of Africa, for the supply of her African islands, whence it would be an easy matter afterwards to transport them to the Brazils or Cuba. A traffic of that description was actually proceeding, of the occasional interruption of which, by British cruisers, the Portuguese ambassador ventured to complain as a breach of treaty. Mr. Canning, however, soon found that Portugal had no longer any possessions for the supply of which, by treaty, the Slave Trade was permitted; and he distinctly stated, he never will sign a treaty with Portugal that does not contain an article for the final and total abolition of the Portuguese Slave-trade. In reply, the Portuguese government acknowledged, that the moment was come to put an end to the inhuman trade in slaves; and that it would insert in the Treaty of Commerce an article, for the total abolition of the Slave Trade in the dominions of Portugal, and also co-operate with his Britannic Majesty for the total extinction of so barbarous a traffic in the countries where it unfortunately still exists.
Between the 1st of January 1825, and the 31st July 1826, upwards of 1500 Brazilian slaves were liberated from slave traders by the Mixed Commission Court at Sierra, and several important captures were subsequently made. One, the Prince de Guinée, freighted with 608 slaves, and strongly armed, was taken, after a desperate resistance, by a small schooner, a tender to his Majesty's ship Maidstone. Another, the Intrepida, measuring only 100 tons, had on board 310 slaves in a state of great wretchedness and emaciation: seventy of
them had died in forty-six days. A third, the Invincible, with a cargo of 440 slaves--a number, it seems, sixty-three short of her full complement, but these so crowded together that it became absolutely impossible to separate the sick from the healthy; and dysentery, ophthalmia, and scurvy breaking out among them, the provisions and water being of the worst kind, and the filth and stench beyond all description, 186 of the number had perished in less than sixty days. A treaty had, however, been agreed upon between Great Britain and Brazil, which fixes the final period of the Brazilian Slave-trade to the expiration of three years, from March 1827; and the carrying on of the trade is to be deemed and treated as piracy. Though it is impossible not to mourn over the horrors of the intervening period, yet let us not lose sight of the gratitude we owe to God, for having thus far crowned with success the efforts of this country in the cause of humanity, that the decree has at length gone forth, that before three years shall have elapsed, from last March, the African Slave-trade will cease to have a legal existence in any part of the civilized world.
No arrangements had been entered into with the American Government, for the mutual suppression of the Slave Trade. The Slave Trade, however, which most deeply affects the character of America, is her internal Slave-trade, which, to the reproach of her free institututions, fills her southern provinces with atrocities paralleled only in the annals of Africa. We are happy to observe, that this Slave Trade, as well as the slavery which gives it birth, has begun widely and strongly to engage the attention of the American public; and that, after the example of England, AntiSlavery Societies are now forming throughout the Union, embracing not only the object of protecting free Blacks and Mulattoes from
being kidnapped and re-inslaved, but that of the universal emancipation of the African race, In one or two of the middle states of America, some of the highest names in the annals of that nation actually derive their income from breeding slaves for the southern plantations, in the same way in which cattle and pigs are in this country reared for the market.
The time, it may be hoped, is fast approaching, when a better feeling will pervade every part of the world pretending to Christian principle, and to the light of civilization: and it is no slight encouragement to the cherishing of this hope, that a decree had recently appeared from the Emperor of Austria, utterly abolishing slavery throughout the Austrian dominions.
Every man," says his Imperial Majesty, "by the right of nature, sanctioned by reason, must be considered as a free person.". "Every slave becomes free from the moment he touches the Austrian soil, or even an Austrian ship." The free governments of Great Britain, America, and France, may learn a salutary lesson of justice and humanity from this monarch.
The extent to which this coast is still ravaged by the slave-traders of France, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, and Brazil, has in some measure been seen from the preceding details. In the midst, however, of the general gloom which covers the face of this quarter of the globe, there is one district of coast from which a better day promises to dawn on Africa. The colony of Sierra Leone, in common with all similar establishments, has indeed had to struggle with danger and difficulties. From peculiar circumstances, it has not only had more than its full share of these to contend against; but it has had to encounter, throughout the whole course of its existence, a bitter and unsparing hostility, ever aiming to bring into discredit the humane and libe
ral principles which gave it birth. It has been felt, and not perhaps without reason, that a colony of Negroes, blessed with free institutions, instructed, civilized, and prosperous, living in peace and subordination, and exhibiting in their conduct the charities of social, and even of Christian life; while they creditably discharge their duties as members of a civil society, by turns administering and obeying laws which equally protect the rights of all, and know no distinction of class and colour;-it has been naturally felt, that an establishment of this kind, if once constructed and matured, would shake to its foundation the fabric of African Slavery. It cannot therefore appear extraordinary, to any who know the influence of self-interest and prejudice combined, that the utmost pains should have been systematically taken to malign this colony, and to deprive it of the public favour and countenance. It is obvious, that in the case of a colony mainly composed, as Sierra Leone is, of the very rudest and most intractable human materials which could be collected into a social union-of persons drawn from the most remote points of the African coast and continent; speaking probably fifty different languages; disembarked there in a state of absolute nakedness, after having been shut up for months in the holds of slave-ships, sunk to a level almost below the brute;-it is obvious, that in the case of a colony constructed of such materials, just emerging, in their different degrees, from a state of the very lowest debasement both of body and mind, the ingenuity of an enemy may find much, especially when addressing an uninformed audience, to give an edge to his calumnies, and to heighten the discredit and contempt which it is his object to excite. But the candid and discriminating reasoner will not be deluded by such arts; and he will form his estimate of the value, and of the progress of such an establish
ment, not by applying to it the standard of European civilization, but by viewing it in contrast with the depth of the debasement of the African while crossing the desert in chains, or while crowded into his floating dungeon of disease and death.
But, whatever may be the discredit which the laborious hostility of some persons may have succeeded in attaching to this colony in the opinion of many persons in England, it is most certain that it is viewed with no such unfavourable eyes by the surrounding tribes, They have better learnt to appreciate the blessings and immunities to be enjoyed under its protection, as contrasted with the wretchedness and insecurity which prevail within the sphere of the Slave Trade.
We lament to learn that the funds of the institution are inadequate to the demands upon them, and that there was an amount of 400l. owing; which sum the Directors trust the liberality of the public would enable them to discharge.
The benefits which this institution has rendered to the cause of humanity are so great that the public at large, and more especially the zealous friends of a religion which breathes "peace on earth and good will to man," surely will not suffer its energies to languish for want of the pecuniary assistance necessary to carry them into activity. So deeply have the Slave Trade and Slavery debased the morals and inflamed the cupidity of abandoned men, in various countries, that it will be long, we fear, even after an universal legal abolition of the traffic, ere the benevolent vigilance of such an Institution will be superfluous. When we calculate the enormous sums expended every year, in maintaining our national preventive service, to ward off prohibited and uncustomed imports; it is not at all surprising that great efforts should have been necessary upon the part of individuals and governments to abolish a traffic as much
more exceeding in atrocity every species of commercial smuggling, as the bodies and souls of immortal beings surpass in value kegs of brandy or bales of silk. Let us be thankful to God that so much has been effected; but let not Great
Britain as a nation, let not enlightened and benevolent individuals in her community, cease their efforts so long as there shall be a slave-ship on the ocean, or a mart for its bloodstained merchandise throughout the world. LONDON HIBERNIAN SOCIETY.
THE following is a summary of the Society's schools for the last year: Day-schools 511, scholars 44,639; Adult schools 215, scholars 8,907; Sunday-schools 251, scholars 9,576. Total 977 schools, 63,122 scholars.
The most satisfactory testimonials are continually received by the society, of the efficiency of its schools and the beneficial results produced in the districts where they are established. For example, one correspondent writes, "Notwithstanding the violent opposition that has been and continues to be exerted against the society in the promotion of scriptural instruction by the priesthood and bishops of the Church of Rome, the cause is gaining ground, and, in a short time, will not at all be affected by them. I have just examined fourteen schools in this part of the country, and I find in them 1004 Roman-Catholic children. The most intense anxiety is manifested by the children to commit the Scriptures to memory." Another says: "The male and female schools of. -have been inspected by Mr. — I was much gratified to hear the children answer so well, and the inspector so zealous, and appearing to me so well qualified, by his questions and Christian manner towards the children, for the important situation which he holds under that society which has been attended with so many blessings to our poor ignorant country, and which, I trust, will be continued, under the blessing of God, until all its inhabitants are brought under the influence of the everlasting Gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ."
Applications are constantly made for additional schools; and so highly, it is stated, are the beneficial effects CHRIST. OBSERV. APP.
of the society's system estimated, that many of the nobility, clergy, and gentry, open schools in connexion with the society, solely for the benefit of the society's books and inspection.
The demand for the Holy Scriptures continues unabated. So numerous and urgent are the applications, that the committee have been compelled to make a renewed application to the British and Foreign Bible Society, who have granted 5000 English Bibles, and 20,000 Testaments, and 250 Irish Bibles, and 500 Irish Testaments.
The Scripture readers are still diligently employed in reading and distributing the Holy Scriptures, wherever they can obtain an introduction. In this they meet with most encouraging success, though often called upon to defend their own principles. All the Scripture readers are Protestants, and usually carry both English, Irish, and Douay Testaments: hence they are frequently called upon to confer on points in dispute between Roman Catholics and Protestants.
A very considerable degree of opposition is still experienced, and arises chiefly, though not exclusively, from the Romish priesthoood. There are, however, exceptions to this general remark. Some RomanCatholic priests patronize and encourage particular schools; and more, it is stated, would adopt this course, were they not compelled to an opposite proceeding by their superiors.
The only books provided by the Society, are English or Irish Bibles, Testaments, and Spelling-books, the reading lessons of which are taken from the Holy Scriptures. The society teaches all its pupils to
read and commit to memory the Holy Scriptures. The religious instruction is left to the several ministers to whose congregations the scholars respectively belong.
A clergyman, in applying for a supply of Irish Prayer-books and Homilies, concludes his letter with saying: "I sincerely hope, that, by steady perseverance in the same line of conduct which the society has hitherto pursued, we shall be able to convince those who are at present unfavourably disposed towards us, that our object is not the bringing men round from one denomination of professors of Christianity to another, but the conversion of the heart to God, the turning of men (by the influence of the Spirit of God, accompanying the reading of his word, which we are anxious to put into their hands) from darkness to light, and from the power of satan unto God.'"
The Secretaries of the Society, in applying to the Committee of the Bible Society, state, that the demand for Bibles and Testaments of various kinds, but more especially for Bibles, has recently been so great, that, although 1000 Bibles and 13,139 Testaments had been received at the London Hibernian Society's depository in Dublin since the commencement of April last, there did not remain in the depository in the beginning of August a single Bible; and the stock of Testaments is reduced so low, that,
without a fresh supply, it will very soon be entirely exhausted. This increasing demand for Bibles, they add, is not merely a natural consequence of the progress of scriptural education, and the result of the active and beneficial labours of the Scripture readers employed by this and other societies, but has, more especially, been excited by the recent discussions on religious subjects which have taken place in Ireland. The frequent reference made by the different disputants to the Old Testament as well as the New has stimulated multitudes to inquire for the whole word of God; and the Society is informed, that on occasion of the late discussion in the North of Ireland, the scholars in some of the schools were in the habit of borrowing, night after night, every Bible in the school, in order that the children, their parents and friends, might compare one passage of Scripture with another. Bibles were invariably returned on the following morning. The Bibles have either been distributed by the inspectors, Scripture readers, &c., among the adult poor, or have been bestowed as rewards upon those children in the schools who have distinguished themselves by committing to memory a greater number of the chapters of the New Testament than the regulation of the school requires. The Bibles thus bestowed as rewards are highly prized.
notices; but a mass of interesting intelligence lies before us, in the Appendix and the Monthly Extracts, which well merits copious citation.
BRITISH AND FOREIGN BIBLE SOCIETY. VALUABLE documents of religious intelligence multiply so rapidly around us, that we are glad of the opportunity of clearing up our arrears in our Appendix; and in no instance more happy than in reference to that preeminent instrument for promoting the glory of God and the best welfare of mankind-the British and Foreign Bible Society. We have already, in our present volume, given our usual abstract of the Report of the Society, and various incidental
From Mr.Dudley." I have the satisfaction of reporting to the committee, the full establishment of the Birmingham Ladies' Branch Bible Society, and twelve connected associations. These twelve associations, including an aggregate population of at least 120,000, are divided into two hundred and ninety