« AnteriorContinuar »
dence towards their society. In February the Reverend Mr. Dent says, “ I cannot help mentioning a singular instance of the goodness of Divine Providence to our poor little flock in Grenada. They have all been eminently loyal from the commencement of our troubles ; and though the men have been as much exposed as any other soldiers, and have undergone as much fatigue, yet I know not of one that has been killed or wounded, or that has died of disease, either of the men or women. We are assured, that when the righteous are removed by death, they are taken away from the evil to come. But to be spared, when inhabitants are so much wanted, is a very great mercy and kindness to the living.”
Upon the 10th of November the mob at Nevis attacked the Methodist chapel, threw a large squib into it, and set it on fire. The fire was speedily extinguished; but the congregation, assailed with swords and bludgeons, were obliged to disperse, and some of the coloured people “were obliged to flee from the island to preserve their lives.” This outrage was committed, from the general belief that the Methodists “ were connected with Mr. Wilberforce in England, to support his application to parliament to abolish the slave trade.” The missionary applied to the magistrates for assistance, and was effectually relieved.
The number of Methodists in society in Barbadoes did not exceed fifty.
In October the Methodists in Dominica had “ nearly eighty in class.” In the same month the missionary was ordered to appear in the field on the ensuing Sunday, to learn the use of arms. He presented a petition to the president, praying to be exempted from military service, in order that he might attend to his ministerial duties. The president, after he had heard the petition, told him, that he had been informed he was a very suspicious character, who disseminated pernicious doctrines among the slaves; and instead of being exempted from military duty, he would compel him to quit the island, and gave him an order accordingly, with which order he was obliged to comply, to avoid imprisonment.
In May, the numbers of Methodists in society in the British Virgin Islands were as follows:- In Tortola, 2624; in Peter's Island, 49; in Jost Vandykes, 76 ; in Spanish Town, 299; in Anegada, 82: “ amounting in the whole to more than 3000 souls.” In Spanish Town they began to build a chapel, for which purpose the inhabitants subscribed €300.
Upon the 18th of October, Captain Evans, in his Majesty's sloop Fury, between the islands of St. Thomas and Santa Cruz, captured L'Elize, French national schooner, carrying ten guns and fifty-six men, from Cape François bound to St. Thomas.
Coke's West Indies, vol. ii. pp. 81. 154. 356. ; vol. iii. pp. 21. 119.
Although the British parliament voted, in 1792, that the slave trade should cease upon the 1st of January this year, yet when Mr. Wilberforce, on the 18th of February, moved that the slave trade be abolished, the motion was lost by a majority of four.
Though the legislature of the Bahamas had laid a tax of £90 currency on manumissions, in 1784, the odious innovation was so unpopular, the assembly report, that it was never carried into execution, and that it was repealed this year; since which period no tax or other restraint upon enfranchisement has been imposed in that colony.
The English officers in garrison at Demerara, in April, erected a few houses at the mouth of the river, and named the village Kingstown; the garrison hospital was in a village, which increased afterwards in size and consequence.
From a return made to the House of Commons, May 6th, 1806, it appears that Great Britain imported from the British West Indies, 102,227 cwt. of coffee, and 131,200 hhds. of sugar, (of which 33,870 cwt. of coffee, and 83,400 hhds. of sugar, came from Jamaica,) and exported 1,816,584 cwt. of sugar, 5,567,754 gallons of rum, 94,086 cwt. of coffee, and 8,854,413 lbs. of cotton.
The Otaheite sugar-cane was sent from Trinidad to the plantations of Terra Firma. This cane is “at least double the size of the Creole cane, is much higher, and consequently contains much more juice.”
In May, 7000 men, under the command of Brigadier-General Howe, arrived at Cape St. Nicholas Mole, to reinforce the British troops in St. Domingo.
Admiral Parker and General Forbes proceeded to Leogane, to attempt the recapture of that place. Admiral Parker cannonaded a fort at the entrance of the creek, and General Forbes determined to attempt the place without any regular approaches, protected by a few light guns. A part of the ditch was filled up, over which the
Annual Register, 1796, p. 181. Stephen on West Indian Slavery, p. 417.
Bolinbroke's Demerary, p. 81. Depon's South America, vol. i. p. 444.
Sir W. Young's Common-place Book, pp. 16. 29. 30. 32, 33.
Coke's West Indies, vol. iii. p. 480.
| Rear Admiral Sir W. Parker's Squadron, in the unsuccessful attack on the town of Leogane. SHIPS.
mu S Rear Admiral Parker.
" Captain R. Parker. Leviathan ............
- J. T. Duckworth. Africa .................
- Rod. Home. Iphigenia ..............
- F. F. Gardner.
- W. Ogilvy.
- D. Guerin. The Leviathan had 5 killed and 12 wounded; the Africa, 1 killed and 7 wounded.
troops marched to the assault; but the fire from an adjacent tower compelled the assailants to abandon both the ditch and their cannon. After this failure the attempt was abandoned.
At Bombarde the British were more successful; but the place was found to be untenable, and abandoned. Rigaud was also compelled by Major-General Bowyer to retire from Trois, and abandon his attempt upon that place, with the loss of 100 men.
December the 3d, Major-General John Graves Simcoe was appointed governor of such parts of St. Domingo as were in the British possession.
Upon the 5th of October, the King of Spain declared war against the King of England, his kingdom and vassals. The reasons assigned for so doing are, that Admiral Hood ruined at Toulon all he could not carry away ; that he afterwards attacked the island of Corsica, without communicating his intention of so doing to Don Juan de Langara, who was with him at Toulon; that the English minister, on the 19th of November, 1794, concluded a treaty with the United States of America, without any regard to the Spanish rights; that the cargo of the Spanish ship EI Santiago, or L'Achille, which was taken from the French, ought to have been restored to Spain; that some ammunition for the Spanish squadrons was stopped on board some Dutch ships ; and that some English ships had landed upon the coasts of Chili and Peru, to carry on a contraband trade, and reconnoitre the shore, under the pretence of fishing for whales: also, because England had sent an army to St. Domingo; and because her merchants had formed establishments upon the banks of the Missouri ; and finally, because she had conquered Demerara from the Dutch, which situation puts her in a condition to get possession of posts still more important: that the King of Spain could not doubt the hostile intentions of England, when he considered that her frigates in the Mediterranean had carried away some soldiers, coming from Genoa to Barcelona on board Spanish ships; and that the Corsican corsairs were protected by the English government in that island; and because an embargo was laid upon the Spanish ship Minerva.
The arrest of Don Simon de las Casas, the ambassador at London, was called another outrage. The English ships Camelion and Kangaroo were said to have violated the coasts of Galicia and Alicant. And lastly, it says, “ moreover, Captain-General Vaughan, commodore of the Alarm, behaved in a manner equally insolent and scandalous in the island of Trinidad, where he landed, with drums beating and flags flying, to attack the French, and to avenge the injuries which he pretended to have received.” .6 Dated at the palace of St. Lorenzo, October the 5th, 1796."
On Saturday the 8th of October, war was proclaimed at Madrid in the usual form.
The answer of England is an able paper ; refutes all the charges of complaint, and attributes the conduct of Spain to the overwhelming influence of the French in the Spanish councils.
On August the 19th, a treaty of alliance offensive and defensive, between the French republic and the King of Spain, was signed at St. Ildephonso, by Citizen D. C. Perignon and Don M. de Godoi, Prince of Peace. The articles which relate to the West Indies are the 5th and part of the 15th.
" Art. 5. The power called on shall in the same way place at the disposal of the requiring power, within the space of three months, reckoning from the moment of the requisition, 18,000 infantry and 6000 cavalry, with a proportionate train of artillery, ready to be employed in Europe, and for the defence of the colonies which the contracting powers possess in the Gulf of Mexico."
Extract from Art. 15. “ The two powers engage to make instantly a common cause, to repress and annihilate the maxims adopted by any country whatever, which may be subversive of their present principles, and which may bring into danger the safety of the neutral flag, and the respect which is due to it, as well as to raise and re-establish the colonial system of Spain on the footing on which it has subsisted, or ought to subsist, conformably to treaties.”
About four o'clock on the morning of the 8th of January, the French and Caribs in St. Vincent's attacked the English camp on Forbes' Ridge. Three hundred men, in three divisions, attacked the left, right, and front at the same moment. The left was protected by a three pounder and a cohorn, placed on a tongue of land which ran out about fifty yards, and, from its steepness on each side, was supposed to be almost inaccessible. M. Chenow headed the division which attacked this part. Guided by a deserter, he entered the battery alone, and found the two artillery men, who had charge of the gun, sleeping across it; he then brought his division up, killed the artillery men, and, with a discharge of grape shot from the gun, gave the first intimation to the English that their camp was attacked. This gun having the command of the ridge occupied by the artillery, the whole in a few minutes was entirely lost.
Attacked upon the right and all along the front at the same moment, the troops gave way at all points; the most gallant personal exertions of General Stewart were ineffectual ; the army retreated to the block-house at Biabou, the enemy hanging on their rear and right. Fortunately Lieutenant-Colonel Fuller of the 40th, with 200 men, who was on his march from Dorsetshire Hill to the camp, arrived at the critical moment, and routed the Caribs. The troops remained at Biabou until dark; General Stewart then ordered fires to be lighted, resumed his march, and on the 10th occupied
men, w Fortunatse at Biayart were points; th the front
Annual Register, 1796, p. 165.
Coke's West Indies, vol. ii. p. 236. Gazette. General Stewart's Letter.
the eminences between the Vigie and the sea. Fifty-four English were killed, 109 wounded, and 200 missing. The loss in officers was unusually great in proportion.
General Hunter arrived from Martinico; he immediately drew the whole of the force, except from the Vigie, to the heights surrounding the town, and the passes to Berkshire Hill were carefully strengthened. On the 14th, the enemy in great force in Mariaqua Valley seemed determined to attack the Vigie. At this time its possession was not of sufficient importance to induce General Hunter to risk an action, he therefore ordered it to be evacuated, which was done at ten o'clock, and the enemy immediately marched in. The next day they advanced to Baker's Ridge, and opened a smart cannonade upon Dorsetshire Hill: their shells were injudiciously thrown, and did no damage. A party of Caribs at the same time encamped about Bowe Wood, at the head of Kingstown Valley.
On the morning of the 20th, Lieutenant-Colonel Prevost was ordered to attack the redoubt on Baker's Ridge. He surprised and cut their piquet guard to pieces; but after receiving two wounds from the fire from the redoubt, he retreated to Millar's Ridge, pursued by the exulting enemy. More than twenty times they attempted to gain the summit of the ridge, darkness then obliged them to desist. The same morning the Caribs pursued some straggling soldiers to the camp at Green Hill. Major Jackson went out to attack them, and Major Fraser endeavoured to flank them; but after several hours bush fighting, they set fire to Bow Wood House and retreated. During the action, Lieutenant-Colonel Gower, with 330 of the 63d, anchored in the roads.
On the 24th, a long six-pounder field-piece was mounted on Millar's Ridge ; it soon occasioned evident confusion in the enemy's camp, who in the dark retired to the Vigie with their artillery. No further operations were carried on until the arrival of Sir Ralph Abercrombie from St. Lucia on the 8th of June. The troops were immediately landed; and in the afternoon of the following day the whole army, 3960 strong, marched in six divisions from Sion Hill to attack the Vigie ; Brigadier-General Knox, with 936 men, to Mariaqua Valley; Major-General Hunter to Calder Ridge, with 1045; Major-General Morshead to Carapan Ridge, with 857; Lieutenant-Colonel Fuller to Ross Ridge, with 573; LieutenantColonel Dickens to Warawaroa Valley, with 317; and LieutenantColonel Spencer, with 232, as a corps de reserve, followed the line of march.
A little before daylight, Lieutenant-Colonel Dickens commenced the attack by carrying a redoubt, which the Caribs abandoned with a slight resistance. After attempting the next post in that direc