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founded, and which stipulates in positive terms, "that the Slave-trade shall be abolished throughout the entire Dominions of Spain, on the 30th of May, 1820; and that from and after that period, it shall not be lawful for any of the Subjects of the Crown of Spain to purchase Slaves, or to carry on the Slave-trade on any part of the Coast of Africa, upon any pretext, or in any manner whatever; provided, however, that a term of 5 months from the said date of the 30th of May, 1820, shall be allowed for completing the Voyages of Vessels which shall have cleared out lawfully previous to the said 30th of May."
You will remind the Spanish Minister that, by the Article I. of the Instructions to the Cruizers, and the Article I of the Regulations for the Mixed Commissions to be established for the due execution of the Treaty, the same proceedings are authorised against illegal trading in breach of the Stipulation just mentioned, as against the violation of the more immediate provisions of that Treaty.
You will impress upon him, in a friendly manner, that His Majesty's Government is warranted to require an exact performance of this Stipulation; and you will add, that His Majesty rests his full assurance upon the well known honour of Spain, that the Government will give Orders for acting up to the Treaty contracted between the two Countries.
Your Excellency will have perceived, by my former Communications to you of Letters from Mr. Kilbee, that there is every reason to believe, that an additional and forced trade in human Beings has been founded on the prospect of its termination, both by sending more Ships than could be loaded on the Coast of Africa, within the ordinary time of trade, and by multiplying Ship's Papers, so as to allow of their being used at a future time; and it appears, from the instance more immediately referred to in the Communication I now send to you, that Vessels take their clearances from one Settlement, and make their importations into another; thus making it doubly inexpedient to admit of any modification of the Treaty, since it would probably be impossible to establish any effectual check against such evasions.
You will, moreover, state to the Spanish Minister, the conviction entertained by His Majesty's Government, of the great inconvenience which would ensue, if further extension should be granted; since fair grounds have been given for apprehension, that any departure from the precise stipulation of the Treaty would lead to further abuses, and involve this Country in much uncertainty and difficulty with regard to the responsibility of Cruizers.
In allusion to the complaints of the Spanish trade against the short period allowed in extension of the 30th of May, 1820, for the completion of all Spanish Slave-trade Voyages, your Excellency will repeat the statements contained in my Letter to M. d'Uzoz of the 11th June, 1820, and in the Letter addressed, under my direction, by the Earl of
Clanwilliam to Mr. Kilbee, on the 17th of April last, inclosed to your Excellency in my Dispatch to you under the same date; and you will, in addition, bring to the recollection of the Spanish Minister, that the notice of the termination of the trade is to be dated from the publication of the Treaty of 1817; and that Merchants, therefore, have no ground whatever to complain now of surprize or disappointment, on account of too short a notice being given to them.
You will, therefore, call upon the Spanish Government, on every principle of justice and of fairness, to issue immediate Orders to their Authorities at The Havannah and elsewhere, and to their Commissioners at The Havannah and at Sierra Leone, to act faithfully up to the Treaty of September 1817, in respect to the Stipulation, whereby the 30th of October, 1820, is fixed as the final term allowed for the completion of the Voyages of Spanish Vessels trading in Slaves. I am, &c. H. E. Sir Henry Wellesley, G. C.B.
No. 53. Sir Henry Wellesley to Visct. Castlereagh.—(Rec. April 5.) (Extract.) Madrid, 26th March, 1821.
THE Count de Toreno moved, on the 23d instant, in the Cortes, "that a Committee should be appointed for the purpose of proposing, agreeably to the tenor of the 6th Article of the Treaty concluded between Great Britain and Spain, on the 23d of September, 1817, the adoption of such measures as might tend to restrain the African Slave Trade, which is still continued in violation of that Treaty, and to the injury of the cause of humanity, both by Spaniards and by Foreigners, under the Flag of Spain, such Penal Laws being enacted as may be deemed conducive to the final Abolition of so scandalous and inhuman a Traffick."
The Motion was carried in a very full House, with only two dissentient voices; and a Committee has been appointed for the above purposes, consisting of the Deputies named in the margin. [The Conde de Toreno, and MM. Lallave, Martinez de la Rosa, Calatrava, and Ramos Arispe.]
The Report of the Committee will probably be presented in the course of a few days; and I hope that I shall shortly have the satisfaction of announcing to your Lordship, that such Penal Laws have been passed in the Cortes, as may be expected (as far as Spain is concerned) to impose a considerable restraint upon this traffick, if they do not effect its total extinction. Viscount Castlereagh, K. G.
No. 54.-Sir Henry Wellesley to Visct. Castlereagh.—(Rec. April 19.)
I RECEIVED by the last Post your Lordship's Dispatch, dated the 16th February, directing me to make a representation to the Spanish
Government, on the subject of the resolution taken by the Spanish Authorities at The Havannah relative to the Brig Tellus, which had arrived there laden with Slaves, and to other Slave-ships which may enter that Port, having cleared out previously to the 30th May, 1820.
I have already apprised your Lordship of the appointment of a Committee of the Cortes, to take into consideration the best mode of preventing the traffick in Slaves from being carried on under the Spanish Flag. The Report of the Committee was presented to the Cortes on Monday last, the 2d instant; and it may be expected that the Penal Enactments proposed in it will be passed in the course of a few days. As the adoption of the measures recommended by the Committee is of the utmost importance with a view to preventing the trade from being carried on by Spaniards, or under the Spanish Flag; and as their proceedings bid so fair to be attended with a satisfactory result; I have thought it advisable to postpone any communication to the Minister for Foreign Affairs upon the subject of your Lordship's Dispatch, until the Cortes shall have come to a decision upon the measures recommended in the Report of their Committee. I have, &c. Viscount Castlereagh, K.G. HENRY WELLESLEY.
No.55.-Sir H. Wellesley to the Marq. of Londonderry.-(Rec. Apr. 29.) (Extract.) Madrid, 16th April, 1821.
I AM concerned to have to inform your Lordship, that the measures proposed by the Conde de Toreno, for restraining the traffick in Slaves, have been rejected by the Cortes, although there was every appearance of their being passed without difficulty.
Your Lordship will recollect that the Conde de Toreno's first Motion upon the subject (when he entered into much detail, both as to the cruelties exercised in this traffick, and as to the penalties he meant to propose, and concluded by moving for the appointment of a Committee) was agreed to almost unanimously. The Report of the Committee was received, and went through the usual course of being read 3 times, at stated periods, previous to its being discussed, and at these periods not a word was stated in objection to it. A day was then fixed for entering upon the discussion, when the President informed the Assembly that the Government had suggested the expediency of treating the subject in a Secret Session. This recommendation was adopted, notwithstanding the opposition of the Conde de Toreno.
Being of course excluded from the Secret Session, I cannot state what passed in the discussion; but I have since learnt, that, after a long discussion, the Assembly came to a decision, that there were no grounds for coming to a vote (no habia lugar à votar), and the Question was consequently lost. The Marq. of Londonderry, K.G.
No. 56.-L. Hervey, Esq. to the Marq. of Londonderry.-(Rec. May 28.)
The Marq. of Londonderry, K.G.
No. 57.-The Marquess of Londonderry to Lionel Hervey, Esq. Foreign Office, 12th June, 1821. I HAVE to acknowledge the receipt of your Dispatch of the 14th ultimo, stating that you have reason to apprehend that it is intended to move in the Cortes, for 2 Years' extension of the term fixed by the Treaty between Great Britain and Spain, for the final Abolition of the Slave-trade.
I lose not a moment in directing you, by command of His Majesty, to remonstrate in the strongest manner with the Spanish Government, against giving countenance to so gross an infraction of its Engagements, should such a measure be really in contemplation.
You are fully aware of the importance which His Majesty's Government and the British Nation at large attach to the total extinction of the traffick in Slaves; and that traffick having been abolished by the Spanish Government, in a solemn Engagement contracted with that of His Majesty, and that in consideration of the payment of a large sum of money; I have only to desire that you will use every exertion in your power to discourage the idea, by expressly declaring that His Majesty neither would nor could in any way lend himself to the abrogation or alteration of the Engagements so contracted. I am, &c. Lionel Hervey, Esq. LONDONDERRY.
No. 58.-The Marquess of Londonderry to Lionel Hervey, Esq. Foreign Office, 3d July, 1821. In reference to my former Dispatches addressed to His Excellency Sir Henry Wellesley, on the subject of the due execution by Spain of the Treaty between His Majesty and the Catholick King, for preventing illegal traffick in Slaves; I furnish you with the accompanying Copy of a Dispatch, dated the 9th of April, 1821, from His Majesty's Commissary Judge at The Havannah ; and I have to direct your attention to that part of it in particular, which states that the two Spanish Commissioners at The Havannah have been nominated to other Situations. I have, in consequence to desire that you will move the Spanish Government to fill up, without delay, the vacancies occurring
by the removal of these Gentlemen, so that the powers of the Mixed Commission, under the Treaty abovementioned, may not be virtually suspended I am, &c.
Lionel Hervey, Esq.
No. 59.-The Marquess of Londonderry to Lionel Hervey, Esq. Foreign Office, 7th August, 1821. I HAVE the honour to transmit to your Excellency Copies of the Addresses of the two Houses of Parliament to His Majesty the King, at the close of the last Session, on the subject of the continued prosecution of the Slave-trade under the Flags of Foreign Powers, notwithstanding the recorded abhorrence of that Traffick by every Government in Europe.
I furnish your Excellency with these Documents, not with any view to your officially communicating them to the Government to which you are accredited, nor founding any immediate and special proceeding upon them, other than in following up the Instructions of which you are already in possession; but it is necessary that you should know the sentiments of Parliament upon this subject, in order that, in your intercourse with the Spanish Ministers, you may frame your language and conduct thereon, in conformity with the views therein expressed. I am,
Lionel Hervey, Esq.
Note. A similar Communication was made to His Majesty's Ambassadors and Ministers, at Paris, Brussels, and Lisbon.
No. 60.-William Hamilton, Esq. to Lionel Hervey, Esq. Foreign Office, 17th August, 1821. I AM directed by the Marquess of Londonderry to transmit to you the accompanying Copies of two Dispatches from Mr. Kilbee, of the 10th June and 7th July, which relate to the admission of certain Slaveships into the Port of The Havannah, in violation of His Catholick Majesty's Decree of September, 1817; and I am to desire that you will communicate the substance of their contents to the Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs, at the first convenient opportunity.
I am, &c.
Lionel Hervey, Esq.
No. 61.-William Hamilton, Esq. to Lionel Hervey, Esq. Foreign Office, 31st August, 1821. By the Marquess of Londonderry's desire, I herewith transmit to you, for the information of the Government to which you are accredited, the accompanying Copy of a Note which has been received from a Gentleman lately returned from Cuba, who was an eye-witness of