Page:The slave trade of east Africa.djvu/39

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would be very inexpensive. The expense of boarding for school children might be made very light from the beginning, and after a short time reduced almost to nil. There is no necessity to give rice, which the Indians in Mauritius require, and which is a very heavy expense, being all imported. At Mahé, the rations served out to labourers consist almost exclusively of maize, manioc, and other productions of the country, which can be produced in any quantity, if sufficient land be secured, and a few adult labourers kept for its cultivation. The school children should be trained from the first to assist, and soon might do all the work that has to be done.


Letter of Swinburne Ward, Esq., H. M. Commissioner for the Seychelles Islands, to Rev. S. Hobbs, dated Government House, Seychelles, May 22, 1869.

"Sir,—According to your desire, I beg to offer the following remarks upon Slave Trade upon the East African Coast, and its connection with these Islands.…

"From what I have heard respecting the East Coast, there appears to be no spot at which it would be either desirable or practicable that an establishment for the regeneration and education of captured Africans could be set on foot. These Islands present every advantage with respect to proximity, climate, and power of control; and should the Society determine upon trying the experiment here, I think that it would be eminently successful, I need not say that, so far as lies in my power, I shall be happy to afford every assistance.

"It is, of course, impossible to give any idea of the number of slaves likely to be brought here, but I cannot look forward to any reduction in the number of captured dhows. More have been taken by our cruisers during the past twelve months than in any previous year, partly owing to the withdrawal of the whole East African squadron during the Abyssinian war, having left the whole coast open to the Arabs, and partly owing to the limited number of ships in the squadron—a quite inadequate number for the proper protection of the coast, and for anything approaching to the suppression of the Slave Trade. On an average, four dhows out of five run their cargoes successfully, so that, judging by the numerous captures, the amount of slaves exported to Arabia and Persia must be very large indeed. During the past five months 451 slaves have been brought here by H.M. ships 'Daphne' and 'Nymphe,' and a considerable quantity have been taken to Aden.

"The above remarks, however, only refer to the main question of Slave Trade on the East Coast generally, and I have offered them only with a view to show the Society that, in all probability, very many more Africans will be brought to these Islands, and that any arrangements made for their culture and amelioration will be most benefi-