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reality incompatible with a Slave-Trading voyage to the Stations, South of the Line, in which that trade is permitted to Portuguese Subjects: the real object such a permission can have, is to afford facility to illegal Slave Trade to the North of the Line.
In calling the attention of the Portuguese Government to these facts, and their consequences, I have to desire that you will your utmost endeavours to impress upon them the urgent necessity of their putting a stop to these, and to other flagrant violations of the solemn Engagements which The King of Portugal has entered into with His Majesty.
As a more effectual precaution against this illicit Traffick, I am to desire you will also endeavour to prevail upon them to adopt the Measure suggested in the Postscript to my Despatch of the 31st of October, 1822, of taking Bonds to a large amount from the Owners of Vessels to whom Passports may be granted to trade in Slaves to the Southward of the Line ; the amount thereof to be forfeited to the Government, if the Vessel be found Trading to the Northward.
I am, &c. E.M. Ward, Esq.
(Memorandum,) By a Private Letter, addressed by Mr Ward to Mr. Planta, and dated the 21st of June, it appears, that (owing probably to the Occurrences which had taken place at Lisbon,) the Ratifications of the Additional Articles to the Convention of the 28th of July, 1917, had not yet been exchanged.
No. 1.--Sir Charles Stuart to The Marquess of Londonderry.
(Received March 10 ) (Extract.)
Paris, March 7, 1822. Since the anxiety of His Majesty's Government to bring about an effectual Abolition of the Slave Trade, has rendered the Measures which are expedient for that purpose, the subject of much deliberation among the French Ministers, the Communications of the several Associations formed in Great Britain and The United States for that object, press so strongly for an immediate interference on the part of the French Legislature, that it is probable, if the French Ministers do not come to the determination of adopting the suggestions of my Court, the Chambers will again take the initiative in the consideration of this Question.
I have told The Vicomte de Montmorency that, if the Ministers should take the Question into their own hands, they will avoid the bad effect which must inevitably arise from making the Abolition a mere Party affair, and that I shall look forward with greater certainty to the attainment of the object which has so long, and so eagerly, been demanded, while, in the contrary alternative, a repetition of the disappointment must be expected, to which the Petitions brought forward on this subject have, in former years, given rise. Though His Excellency has not contested the justice of my reasoning, I have not been able, hitherto, to obtain from him any thing farther than a renewal of the assurances, contained in the Official Letter, sent home in my Despatch of the 7th ultimo. The Marquess of Londonderry, K. G. CHARLES STUART.
No. 2.—Sir C. Stuart to The Marquess of Londonderry.- (Rec. Apr. 4.) (Extract.)
Paris, April 1, 1822. I have the honour to acquaint Your Lordship that a Motion, by The Duke de Broglie, respecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade, was brought forward in the Chamber of Peers on Thursday last, in the form of a Proposition that an Address should be carried up to the Throne, requesting, in compliance with the Engagements contracted under Treaties with Foreign Powers, that the new Laws may be enacted which His Majesty deems necessary to prevent this Traffick.
The opposition to this motion was founded principally upon the informality of an Address brought forward in an indefinite shape, an argument of which the Adversaries to the measure appeared extremely anxious to take advantage; and, after some discussion, they succeeded in carrying a motion for an adjournment by a large majority. The Marquess of Londonderry, K.G. CHARLES STUART.
No. 3.-Sir C. Stuart to The Marquess of Londonderry.- (Rec. Apr. 7.) (Extract.)
Paris, April 4, 1822. The Chamber of Deputies on Monday began the examination of the expense of the Marine and Colonies. M. Benjamin Constant availed bimself of the opportunity to call the attention of the Chamber to the Representations which have been received respecting the continuation of the Slave Trade, and though he was answered by the Minister of the Marine, and by M. Lainé, they appeared anxious to avoid committing the interests of the Government, by proposals in the Chamber which are likely to fail, rather than desirous to check the evil which is admitted on all sides to exist. The Marquess of Londonderry, K.G. CHARLES STUART.
Na. 4.- Sir C. Stuart to The Marquess of Londonderry.-(Rec. Apr. 11.) (Extract.)
Paris, April 8, 1822. I WAITED until the termination of the Discussion in the Chamber of Deputies, upon the expenses of the Colonial Department, had given me a full conviction that it is not the intention of the French Ministers to bring forward any proposition this Session, which is calculated to remedy the defects in the French Laws for the Abolition of the Slave Trade, before I resolved to carry into effect the Instructions contained in Your Lordship’s Despatch of the 26th ult. which reached me on Monday last.
It was not till yesterday that I spoke to The Vicomte de Montmorency on the subject, when the same representations on both sides, which have been detailed upon many similar occasions in the course of my Correspondence, were again repeated. I therefore determined to carry to His Excellency's knowledge the facts detailed in Your Lordship's Letter, by compressing the whole into the shape of the Official Note, of which I have the honour to inclose a Copy. The Marquess of Londonderry, K.G. CHARLES STUART.
(Inclosure.)—Sir Charles Stuart to The Vicomte de Montmorency. Sir,
Paris, April 7, 1822. A succession of fresh outrages renders it again my duty to observe to Your Excellency, that the pledge given to His Britannick Majesty by The King of France for the effectual Abolition of the Slave Trade, remains unredeemed.
At a moment when the Enactments of the American and Spanish Legislatures have shewn the cordial inclination of those Nations, to concur in Measures for the attainment of an object so important to humanity, the Official Advices received by His Britannick Majesty's Government from Sierra Leone, dated in January, prove that this detestable Traffick still exists in full activity on the African Coast, covered and protected by the Flag of France.
During the months of July and August last, the Leeward Coast being visited by British Cruizers, three French Slave Traders, as by the inclosed List, were met with and examined on the Calabar River.
At the same period the River Bonny was found swarming with Slave Traders, and Your Excellency is furnished with a List of the Vessels which abused and disgraced the French Flag ; four having their Cargoes on board.
On the line of Coast between Sierra Leone and Cape Mount, one of His Britannick Majesty's Vessels, during a Cruize only of ten days, fell in with Nine French Slave Traders, of which I likewise transmit Your Excellency the names.
Though these facts sufficiently shew Your Excellency the advantage taken of the inadequacy of the Regulations of France, to put a
stop to this odious Traffick, there are other Cases in which particulars cannot be obtained. Accounts of undoubted authority, and of recent date, from the Factory of the Gallinas, state that, in the course of last summer, Three Slave Vessels under (French Colours were lying in that Port; that a large Slave Vessel, fully laden, had sailed from Shevar, under the same Flag, ten days before ; and that, about the same time, in the River Pongas, a French Schooner, M. Dees, Master, took on board 95 Slaves, while, besides the ordinary exportation in large Vessels, an extensive carrying trade is kept up with the Cape de Verd Islands, principally by the small craft belonging to Goree and Senegal.
There seems indeed to be scarcely a spot on that Coast which does not shew traces of the Slave Trade, with all its attendant horrors; for the arrival of a Slave Ship in any of the Rivers on the Windward Coast, being the Signal for War between the Natives, the hamlets of the weaker party are burnt, and the miserable Survivors carried and sold to the Slave Traders.
It is clearly ascertained, by enquiries made on the spot, and on the adjacent Coast, by His Majesty's Cruizers, that the number of Slave Cargoes taken out of the River Bonny in the preceding Year, amounted actually to 190, and a similar return from the Calabar, for the like period, made a total for that River alone of 162.
I have received the express commands of The King, my Master, to address to the Government of His Most Christian Majesty, an urgent representation of these distressing facts, which, if they prove any thing, prove that wherever the French Flag appears, protection and impunity are granted to the Slave Trader, and that the abuse of the Laws enacted in France against this Traffick, notwithstanding the allegations of the Party disposed to encourage the mischief, afford practical examples of the consequences which must result from this evil, by occasioning encroachments on the Territories of friendly Powers in Africa, and exciting bloody wars among the Natives.
The magnitude of the evil must compel the French Government now to determine, whether they will refuse to execute their Engagements, and sit down under the imputation of being the Power, to whom all those interested in such a cause turn their eyes, as the avowed Protector of this Commerce; or vindicate their character for good faith and humanity in the eyes of the rest of the World, by assimilating their legislation to that of those Countries which have the greatest interest in Maritime and Colonial affairs.
I have the honour to be, &c. The Vicomte de Montmorency.
No. 5.—Sir Charles Stuart to The Marquess of Londonderry.
(Received June 13.) MY LORD,
Paris, June 10, 1822. I am to acknowledge Your Lordship's Letter of the 14th of May, * containing Copies of the several Papers which have been laid before Parliament upon the subject of the Abolition of the Slave Trade.
The anxiety of The Vicomte de Montmorency to read these Papers induced me to avail myself of an early opportunity to send them to His Excellency, accompanied by the inclosed Note, in which I reminded him, that, since my various Communications remain unanswered, he must not be surprised that the interests of France respecting this important subject, are in some degree separated from those of all other civilized Nations.
It is stated in the Moniteur of the 8th instant, that proceedings have been instituted by the Colonial Tribunals against Individuals who have embarked in this Trade, but the silence of the Government in their Communications with me upon the subject, throws a doubt upon these statements, which induces me to hesitate to give to them that credit to which I should otherwise have supposed them to be entitled.
I have the honour to be, &c. The Marquess of Londonderry, K.G. CHARLES STUART.
(Inclosure.)-Sir Charles Stuart to The Vicomte de Montmorency. SIR,
Paris, June 5, 1822. In compliance with Your Excellency's wishes, I have the honour to inclose the Papers which have been laid before the British Parliament, respecting the Slave Trade.
I cannot but point out that the proofs they afford of a disposition to abolish this Traffick on the part of Spain, and of The United States, offer a melancholy contrast to the result of the numerous overtures I have had the honour to address Your Excellency upon this subject. I therefore avail myself of the opportunity, not only to remind Your Excellency that my various remonstrances remain unanswered, but that the persevering industry with which the Slave Traders still abuse the protection of the French Flag, and the reluctance of the Government to adopt any Measure which can check this evil, will, if continued, separate the views and interests of France upon this Question from those of all other civilized Nations.
In the hope that the facts stated in these Documents will lead to resolutions which the interests of humanity, not less than the dignity of the French Court, require ;
I have the honour to be, &c. The Vicomte de Montmorency.
* Same as Netherlands, No. 4.