Page:EB1911 - Volume 25.djvu/494

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South Africa

mouth of the Orange to Delagoa Bay (save for the small stretch of Amatonga shore-line) became definitely British.

To Delagoa Bay, or rather to the southern part of the bay, Great Britain had laid unsuccessful claim. On the northern Delagoa of the chief estuary of the bay the Portuguese had from the 16th century onward maintained a precarious foothold; it was their most southerly station on the east coast of Africa. In 1823 treaties had been concluded by the British with tribes inhabiting the southern shores of the bay. Neither the Portuguese nor the British claims seemed of much importance until the rise of the South African republic. Anxious for a seaport, the Transvaal Boers in turn laid claim to Delagoa Bay. This brought the dispute between Great Britain and Portugal to a head, the matter being referred in 1872 to the president of the French republic for arbitration. In 1875 an award was given by Marshal MacMahon entirely in favour of the Portuguese (see Delagoa Bay). As a port outside British control Delagoa Bay was a source of strength to the Boers, especially as the railway[1] was under their control. In the war which began in 1899 munitions of war and recruits for the Boers were freely passed through Delagoa Bay.

C. The Struggle for Supremacy between British and Dutch.—Bechuanaland, through which territory runs the route to the Bechuanaland Annexed.far interior—the countries now known as Rhodesia—was acquired, despite the strong desire of the Gladstone administration to avoid further annexations in South Africa. At first the encroachments on Bechuana territory by Boers from the Transvaal were looked upon with comparative indifference. The Boers respected neither the frontier laid down by the Pretoria convention nor that (modified in their favour) drawn in the London convention. But missionary influence was strong; it was reinforced by the growing strength of the imperialistic spirit and by the fears excited by Germany's intrusion on the south-west coast. An expedition was sent out in October 1884 under Sir Charles Warren; the Boers, who had set up the “republics” of Goshen and Stellaland, were obliged to give way, and the country was annexed (see Bechuanaland). It was in connexion with this affair that Cecil Rhodes first came into prominence as a politician. As a member of the Cape parliament he undertook a mission, before the arrival of Warren, to the Goshen and Stellaland Boers, endeavouring, unsuccessfully, to obtain from them a recognition of British sovereignty. The acquisition of Bechuanaland by Great Britain was the essential preliminary to the development of the schemes which Rhodes entertained for the extension of British rule into Central Africa. In his endeavours to realize this aim he had to contend with the new spirit of national consciousness animating the Boers, which found expression in the formation of the Afrikander Bond.

In its external, as in most of its internal policy, the Transvaal was controlled from 1881 onward by Paul Kruger, who The Afrikander Bond.was elected president of the state in 1883. Yet Kruger was scarcely the real leader in the nationalist movement to which the successful revolt of 1880–81 gave strength. The support given by the Cape Colony Dutch to the malcontent Transvaal Boers has already been mentioned. During the 1880–81 revolt many Free State burghers, despite the moderating influence of President Brand, joined the Transvaal commandoes. Now a definite effort was made to build up a united South Africa on anti-British lines. In the latter part of 1881 a Dutch pastor at the Paarl, a town in western Cape Colony named Du Toit, in a paper called De Patriot, suggested the organization of an Afrikander Bond; in the same year Carl Borckenhagen, a German resident in the Free State, advocated such a bond in his paper, the Bloemfontein Express. The Bond was formed, its work being almost confined to Cape Colony. It held its first congress at Graaf Reinet in 1882. In the “programme of principles” upon which its constitution was modelled it was set forth that:

While in itself acknowledging no single form of government as

the only suitable form, and whilst acknowledging the form of government existing at present [the Bond] means that the aim of our national development must be a united South Africa under its

own flag.

In the following year the Farmers' Protection Association was amalgamated with the Bond, and the joint organization fell under the control of J. H. Hofmeyr, the leader of the Dutch party in Cape Colony. Under Hofmeyr's politic control all declarations inconsistent with allegiance to the British Crown were omitted from the Bond's constitution. It remained, however, a strong nationalist organization, which in practice was inimical not so much to the British connexion as to the British section of the population and to the development of the country on enlightened lines. (For the Afrikander Bond see further Cape Colony: History, and Hofmeyr.)

Not long after the Warren expedition the valuable gold fields which Sir Garnet Wolseley had foreseen would be discovered in the Transvaal were actually found. By 1886, the year in which Johannesburg was founded, the wealth of the Witwatersrand fields was demonstrated. The revenue which these discoveries brought into the Transvaal treasury increased the importance of that state. The new industrial situation created had its effect on all parties in South Africa, and in some measure drew together the British and Dutch sections outside the Transvaal. A customs union between Cape Colony and the Free State was concluded in 1889, to which later on all the other South African states, save the Transvaal, became parties. But Kruger remained implacable, bigoted, avaricious, determined on a policy of isolation. In 1887 he made proposals for an alliance with the Free State. Brand refused to be ensnared in Kruger's policy, and the negotiations led to no agreement. (For details of this episode see Orange Free State: History.) Not many months afterwards (July 1888) the Free State lost by death the wise, moderating guid ance of Sir John Brand. The new president, F. W. Reitz, one of the founders of the Bond, in 1889 committed the Free State to an offensive and defensive alliance with the Transvaal. Kruger thus achieved one of the objects of his policy. Within the Transvaal a great change was coming over the population. There fiocked to the Rand many thousands of British and other Europeans, together with a considerable number of Americans. This influx was looked upon with disfavour by Kruger and his supporters, and, while the new comers were heavily taxed, steps Kruger's Hostility to the Uitlanders.were speedily taken to revise the franchise laws so that the immigrants should have little chance of becoming burghers of the republic. This exclusion policy was even applied to immigrants from the other South African countries. A system of oppressive trade monopolies was also introduced. The situation with which the Boers were called upon to deal was one of great difficulty. They could not keep back the waves of the new civilization, they feared being swamped, and they sought vainly to maintain intact their old organization while reaping the financial benefit resulting from the working of the gold mines. The wider outlook which would have sought to win the Uitlanders (as they were called) to the side of the republic was entirely lacking. The policy actually followed was not even stationary; it was retrogressive.

Meanwhile, and partly through distrust of the Kruger policy, there was growing up in Cape Colony a party of South African Afrikander Imperialists.Imperialists, or, as they have been called, Afrikander Imperialists, who came to a large extent under the influence of Cecil Rhodes. Among these were W. P. Schreiner (afterwards premier of the colony) and J. W. Leonard (sometime attorney-general) and, to some extent, Hofmeyr. From the time of his entrance into politics Rhodes endeavoured to induce the leading men in the country to realize that a development of the Whole country could and should be accomplished by South Africans for South Africans. He fully admitted that the cry which had become so popular since 1881 of “Africa for the Afrikanders” expressed a reasonable aspiration, but he constantly pointed out that its fulfilment could most

  1. For the international difficulties connected with the building of the railway from Delagoa Bay to Pretoria see Lourenço Marques.