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Agreement with Messrs. Delany and Campbell on behalf of the black emigrants of America, but he believes that they were subsequently induced to deny that they had done so by the arguments of persons opposed to the scheme.
Mr. Foote, Her Majesty's late Consul at Lagos, on the other hand, would seem, as will be seen by the accompanying extract of a private letter from him, to have been of opinion that the grants to Messrs. Delany and Campbell had no validity whatever.
However this may be, Lord J. Russell desires me to state that he is of opinion that it would be unwise to attempt to procure for the American emigrants territorial rights or privileges which might hereafter lead to disputes, and rouse the jealousy of the Chiefs and people of Abbeokuta, and his Lordship would therefore recommend that before any considerable number of emigrant negroes are sent to Lagos precise information should be procured as to the terms on which such emigrants will be received at Abbeokuta.
I am, however, to add, that his Lordship will transmit to Mr. McCoskry the list which accompanied your letter of the 12th ultimo, of emigrants who are desirous of proceeding to Africa under the auspices of the African Aid Society, and will instruct him to afford them the benefit of his advice and assistance in the event of their proceeding to Lagos. I am, &c.
Lord A. Churchill.
No. 18.-Earl Russell to Acting Consul McCoskry. (Extract.)
Foreign Office, August 20, 1861. I HAVE received your despatch of the 4th ultimo, reporting that at your suggestion, Captain Jones was about to proceed to Ibadan and Oyo, to endeavour to bring about a cessation of hostilities between Abbeokuta and Ibadan.
You should lose no opportunity of impressing, not only on the Alake and Chiefs of Abbeokuta, but also on the other Chiefs in the Yoruba country, that Her Majesty's Government have no favour or predilection for one tribe more than another; that they will judge of the Chiefs by their acts, and will consider as friends, and support by their influence as far as possible, those men who give up the Slave Trade, and by living at peace with their neighbours, encourage legitimate trade, and develop the resources of their country.
If Her Majesty's Government have hitherto afforded their countenance and support to the Abbeokutans, it has been because they professed to set themselves against the Slave Trade, to encourage civilization, and, by following peaceful pursuits, to afford a good example to their neighbours; but if the Chiefs of Abbeokuta now continue to wage wars, and refuse to listen to the advice and sug
gestions of the British officers who have spoken to them in the name of Her Majesty's Government, and have endeavoured to bring about a peaceable settlement of their differences with their neighbours, you should give them distinctly to understand that they will forfeit the friendship and goodwill of the British Government.
It is only by degrees that we can hope to bring sufficient influence to bear upon the Chiefs in the Yoruba country to convince them that their interests will be best consulted by giving up wars and pursuing a policy of peace, but Her Majesty's Government are sanguine that this object may be attained by pursuing a firm but conciliatory policy towards them.
W. McCoskry, Esq.
No. 23.-Earl Russell to Acting Consul McCoskry.
SIR, Foreign Office, November 23, 1861 I HAVE received your despatch of the 4th ultimo, reporting that the Chiefs of Abbeokuta have on every occasion refused our proffered mediation to bring about a settlement of their differences with the Ibadans, and suggesting that the most effective way to compel the two parties to come to terms would be by putting a stop to their supplies of ammunition, a measure which you state could be easily effected.
I have, in reply, to desire that you will lose no opportunity of impressing upon the Alake and Chiefs of Abbeokuta that they will infallibly lose the friendship and protection of Her Majesty's Government if they persist in their hostilities against the Ibadans and refuse to listen to the peaceful counsels of Her Majesty's Agents.
The Governor of Lagos will proceed to his post by the packet of the 23rd of December, and if the Abbeokutans should not on his arrival have come to some arrangement for restoring peace to the Yoruba country, the Governor will be directed to take such measures as may be practicable for cutting off the supplies of ammunition to the belligerents.
W. McCoskry, Esq.
I am, &c.
No. 36.-Consul-General Hill to Earl Russell.—(Rec. Nov. 11.) MY LORD, Government House, Sierra Leone, October 21, 1861. I HAVE the honour to transmit, for your Lordship's information, a copy of a despatch to his Grace the Duke of Newcastle relative to the colony of Liberia. I have, &c. STEPHEN J. HILL.
(Inclosure 1.)-Governor Hill to the Duke of Newcastle. (Extract.) Government House, Sierra Leone, October 21, 1861.
I HAVE the honour to transmit, for your Grace's information, the report of Commander Smith, with inclosures from the Secretary of State of Liberia, relative to an engagement between a Spanish gun-boat and the schooner Quail and batteries at Monrovia.
It would appear that nothing further has, since that untoward event, occurred of a hostile character on the part of Spain, but the Monrovians are building batteries and mounting guns, fearing an attack from a Spanish squadron.
It is not so stated, but there can be no doubt that the circumstances which produced this misunderstanding between the Governments of Spain and Liberia are the same already reported by me, relative to the Spanish slaver first taken possession of at the Gallinas by the Commander of the Liberian vessel of war Quail, and afterwards burned by Commander Smith, of Her Majesty's steam-sloop Torch.
It may be a question, the right exercised by the Commander of the Quail to seize a Spanish vessel at the Gallinas, but nothing, I apprehend, could justify the destruction of Monrovia, without first allowing the Liberian Government an opportunity to explain the grounds on which their officer acted, or to offer compensation in case they did not approve of his conduct.
The proceedings of the Spanish gun-boat in making what was understood to be a friendly visit, and, without any communication on the subject of the cause of quarrel, firing on the Quail, is, I believe, an act without precedent in civilized warfare. The Duke of Newcastle.
STEPHEN J. HILL.
(Inclosure 2.)-Commander Smith to Governor Hill.
Torch, Sierra Leone, October 20, 1861. IN compliance with your Excellency's request, I have visited Monrovia and had an interview with the President of Liberia.
I inclose a copy of a letter addressed to me from the Secretary of State, also the documents referred to therein.
Should your Excellency deem it advisable that one of Her Majesty's ships should proceed to Monrovia, I will send instructions to Commander Heneage, of Her Majesty's ship Falcon, to proceed there at once, or go there myself as soon as practicable. I have, &c.
S. J. Hill, Esq.
F. H. SMITH.
(Inclosure 3.)-Mr. Lewis to Commander Smith. (Extract.) Department of State, Monrovia, October 18, 1861. THE President has directed me to convey to you his high ap
preciation of the communication which you made to him to-day, from his Excellency the Governor of Sierra Leone; and to express to you the satisfaction he had with you on the occasion of your visit.
The President is fully sensible of the importance which is to be attached to the interest manifested by his Excellency the Governor for the welfare of Liberia; and he has directed me to transmit to you for the information of his Excellency, copies of depositions and other documents referring to the extraordinary aggression in this port upon the Liberian Government schooner Quail, by a Spanish war-steamer on the morning of the 11th September.
(Inclosure 4.)—Lieutenant Benedict to the President of Liberia. Quail, off Monrovia, September 14, 1861. I HAVE the honour to report to your Excellency, that on Wednesday, the 11th instant, there came to an anchor off this place, a steam-vessel wearing the ensign of a Spanish man-of-war; I immediately, after anchoring, called away my boat and directed Mr. Carney, my second officer, to board her, inquire her name, that of her captain, her wherefrom, whereabout, and general news, as you will see from the report of Mr. Carney which I have the honour herewith to annex.
Having no suspicion of any intention on the part of the Spanish war-vessel to enter into hostilities with us, I was busy with my men in fishing an anchor from which we had parted our cable a few days previous: we were all busily engaged in doing so when my notice was called by one of my men to his getting under way; this I thought nothing of, as he had come-to very near our vessel, but merely thought that he intended only to move a little further off, as the swinging of the vessels might bring them in contact with each other. He stood out about 3 or 4 miles, and directed his vessel again for the harbour, ran in, rounded the stern of the American barque Edward, under charter from The United States, by Messrs. Johnson, Turpin, and Dunbar, merchants of this place, stood up between the Edward and myself, and when opposite me, so that his guns would bear, opened fire upon me, throwing first grape, and next grape and round-shot: he happily, however, injured no one on board. Several of the grape struck the schooner, but did no serious damage to her; our bowsprit was struck by the round-shot, which carried away our fore-topmast and flying jib-stays, and bowsprit stays. As soon after his first fire as I could I piped all hands to quarters and succeeded in repulsing the aggression, and drove him off with an impression in his stern and quarters which
will indelibly mark upon his mind the remembrance of the Liberian
The President of Liberia.
I have, &c.
JAMES LIBERIA BENEDICT.
(Inclosure 5.)-Acting Lieutenant Carney to Lieutenant Benedict. SIR, Quail, of Monrovia, September 11, 1861. I HAVE the honour to report that, in accordance with your orders, I boarded the Spanish steam-vessel of war, requested her name, and that of her Captain; to which they replied that "she was a Spanish man-of-war, that she was just from Sierra Leone, came to see the President, and would likely remain here for two or three days, and inquired the best place for landing," &c.
The Commander made the impression upon my mind that his visit was a friendly one. I have, &c.
No. 40.-Lord J. Russell to Mr. Christie.
Foreign Office, February 8, 1861. I HAVE received your despatch of the 20th of December last, suggesting that you should be authorized to apply to the Brazilian Government for a detailed list of the free blacks who have been handed over by the Mixed Commission Court to the care of the Brazilian authorities, specifying what has become of them, whether dead, emancipated, or still in service, with a view to a demand being made by Her Majesty's Government for the emancipation of all those negroes who have served beyond the term of apprenticeship prescribed by the Brazilian laws.
I have, in reply, to acquaint you that I approve of your making a communication to the Brazilian Government in the sense suggested by you, and in doing so you will at the same time state that, inasmuch as it was under the authority of a joint British and Brazilian Commission that these blacks were emancipated, Her Majesty's Government feel that they are entitled to ask for this information respecting them, and are bound to look to their welfare; and you will add, that Her Majesty's Government do not doubt that the same good faith which the Government of Brazil has evinced in putting a stop to the African Slave Trade will equally lead them to render justice to the unfortunate victims of this traffic by restoring them to the full amount of liberty to which they are entitled.
I think it right to observe, for your information and guidance,