Rafael Seijas.

Venezuela-British Guiana boundary arbitration. Digest of evidence arranged according to subjects online

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that at different times had been carried out by the Carib Indians always sup-
ported and encouraged by foreigners, especially by the Dutch. Same, p. jj.

His Majesty issued the following Resolution : The Catalonian Capuchin Mis-
sionaries of the jurisdiction of Guayana have represented the injuries and
atrocities i»erpetrated in their Missions by some Carib settlements, under
the influence of the Dutch from Essequibo, as it is surmised, on account of
their having taken refuge in the said Colony and because the Governor of the
same grants them letters patent to make slaves of all the Indians whom they
meet. Same, p. 44.

To-day it [Guayana fortress] is now sufficiently fortified to prevent the
foreigners' illicit trade and the entrance of the Caribs, their allies, in the

Orinoco, and their landing and hostile demonstrations against these Provinces,
as they did before until the year 1747. Same, p. 48.

The Dutch natives in those Colonies who accompany the Caribs teach them
to manage fire-arms, and are even more inhuman than the Caribs, for which
reason great vigilance is needful to restrain them and defend the said
Missions, which they endeavour to destroy in order that they may not serve as a
check to their Colonies. Same, p. 64.

1 769. Fray Benito de la Garriga.

After the rebellion of all the Caribs in the year 1750 in our five INIissions of
Miamo, Cunuri, Tupuquen, Curumo, and Mutanambo, . . . they then told
us, what we had already surmised, that the outbreak was instigated l>y the

I also saw and recognized a Dutch mulatto who came disguised as a Carib,
to instruct and encourage the Caribs. His name, and he himself, is well known
in these Missions. B. C, IV, 21.

At that time we suspected that the Caribs would rebel again as in the past,
as they showed signs of insolence, which they do at a word from the meanest
Dutchman. This comes from the protection they receive at Essequibo whenever
they escape from our Missions; and now another plot has been discovered
among the Caribs of our Missions and those of the Observant Fathers ; their in-
tention being to revolt and take refuge in the Parava, under the protection of
the Dutch. "^V^w^^ P- -'-'•



1769. Fray Benito de la Garriga.

The chief Caribs they [Dutcli] have are fugitives from our villages and

those of the Observant Fathers, and they are always trying to attract more.

B. C.,IV,2j.

Tlie Caribs . . . labour coutiuually, nudcr the direction of the
Dutoli, iu the destrnctiou of our villages by various means, at one time burn-
ing them, as they did in 1750; at another time attacking them by main force ;
at another raising rebelUon by diabolic craft and policy ; ... the Dutch, to-
gether with the Caribs, have destroyed . . . seven of our established vil-
lages, without counting those which they burnt and destroyed belonging to the
Jesuit missionaries and to the Observants. Satne, p. jo,

1772. Don Manuel Centurion.

Shortly after the expedition . . . had left this city to take possession of
the famous Lake Parime . . . the Catalan Capuchins undertook a similar
expedition ; ... as they were on the banks of the Mayari . . . they were at-
tacked by savage Indians, friends, allies, and relations of the Dutch (as they
proclaimed themselves with cries, and which was further proved by the fire-arms
and ammunition which they used against our people). Same, p. 106.


1614. Antonio de Muxica Buitron, Lieut, of Guiana.

The insolence and ill-treatment which the Aruacas suffered from the Flemish
and Caribs were such that he [Buitron] proceeded to the river called Corentine,
200 leagues from that city [Santo Thome] where the Flemish and Caribs have a
fortress. B. C, I, 36.

1746. Commandeur in Essequibo.

The Postholder of Wacquepo and Moruka came the day before yesterday
[July 18, 1746] to inform me that a nation of Indians have come down from
Orinoco and have attacked the Caribs subject to us in the River Wayni [perhaps
the Akawaini, a small tributary of the Pomeroon. See U. S. Com., Ill, pp. 2S3-
284. Also B. C, II, p. 4S D; 70 C.\, have killed several, and have threatened
that they would extirpate them all, ... I have strong reasons to suspect
that the Indians have been sent by tlie Spaniards of Cumana. B. C, II, 45.

1754. Director-General in Essequibo.

We have ordered the Captains to . . . warn the Caribs and other
Indians at the earliest opportunity, to make ready as soon as possible ships to
serve as outlying posts, and to send a messenger to Orinoco with a letter from
me to the Commandant there. Same, p. pj.

I have had all the Indians, our allies, warned and armed, and they only
await my orders to march and send expresses to our neighbours and allies.

Same, p. gg.

The Indians above in Cuyuni, have only this week caused me to be assured
that they will well guard the passage, and that I had nothing to fear from that
5J(lg Same, p. 100,



1755. Director-General in Essiquibo.

As I now write this I have staying^ at my house the chiefs of the Panacay tribe
up in the Cuyuni. I must absolutely keep them friendly, for many weig'hty
reasons. , . .

The Chief of the Panacays (a mighty nation which has never before been
here) have expressly comedown to offer their help against the Spaniards if
required, and they are going to settle down with their dwellings round the Post.

B. C, II, iig.

1755. Arraytana, a Carib Chief.

My journey [to Essequibo] was because I had been summoned by the
orders of my ally, his Excellency, who told me . . . that . . . the
reason why he had summoned me, [was] in order to tell me that I must hold
myself in readiness to come and help him resist the Spaniards.

I asked my ally, his Excellency, for permission to go to Upper Essequibo,
\boven Esseqtiebo\ in order to make my bread in Masseroeny before my journey
to Essequibo.

" Would you not kill those who seek you ? " I answered, " No ; because
your Lord, my ally, only recently forbade me most expressly to do no harm to
the nation, who are his friends or allies." Satne, p. 126.

1755. British Case.

In 1755 the Panacays settled in the neighborhood of the Cuyuni Post to
prevent the encroachments of the Spaniards. B. C, pj.

1762. Director-General in Essequibo.

These [guns and cutlasses] will be urgently required, especially if the
piracies continue, in which case we shall be oblig-ed to employ the Carib
nation, who cannot or will not fight without guns. B. C, II, 21J.

On the nth September, [1762] the Carib nation unexpectedly sent mes-
sengers down the river, inquiring- how matters stood with the Spaniards, say-
ing: that they would certainly not allow the latter to obtain a footing- here, and

that they were ready to aid us with all their might.

I answered that there was no great danger yet, . . . but I requested
them to be good enough to keep their arms and boats ready to come down at the
least warning, and that in such an event we would provide them with powder
and shot. This they accepted and promised. Satne, p. 21S.

1762. West India Company (Zeeland Chamber).

We also send you herewith fifty muskets and cutlasses, so as if need be to arm
therewith the natives for the defence of the Colony. Same, pp. 220-221.

1764. Director-General in Essequibo.

In this emergency I have again had a talk with V'an der Heyde about
Cuyuni. He has told me that the Indians were won over to be helpful, but that
they wished in that case to be assured also of protection ag-ainst the Span-
iards. B. C, III, iiS.



1765. Director-General in Essequibo.

Friendly relations with the Indians are certainly of the greatest necessity to
the Colony ; the dangerous circumstances in which we found ourselves, and the
loyalty shown and assistance rendered at that time by the Caribs and
Acnivays, have given convincing- i>roofs of what advantage their friendship,
and how injurious their enmity, niig-lit be to the Colonies. B. C, III, 118.

1765. West India Company (Zeeland Chamber).

We were glad to see . . . that you intended ... to keep a
watchful eye upon the movements of the Spaniards, and to take proper
measures against them, in case this should unhappily become necessary. Still
we are of opinion that the friendship and lielp of the Carib nation would
under such circumstances be to us of uncommon utility, ... for which
reason we strong^ly recommend tliat yon cultivate it as much as possible.

Same, pp. 12^-126.

1767. Director-General in Essequibo.

I can rely upon the assistance of the Caribs in case we have to meet violence
with violence, but so long as circumstances demand soft measures they are no
earthly use to me, their hatred ag:ainst the Spaniards being deep-rooted and
great. Same, p. 142.

1769. Director-General in Essequibo.

I asked the Carib Owl this morning whether the Caribs were no longer men,
and whether they had no hands with which to defend themselves, whereupon
he replied, " Indeed, they have ; but the Spaniards liave guns, and we only
bows and arrows. Give us rifles, powder, and shot, and we will show
you what we are." Even had I been incHned to do so I could not, having no
further supply of these than just sufficient for the garrison. B, C, IV, ij.

1790. Lopez de la Puente.

As there is a petty King or Carib Chief, enemy of the rebellious slaves, and
allied with the Dutch in the territory intervening, it would not be possible to go
that way without being perceived, and then the Dutch would quickly arm the
Caribs to prevent our going- to the interior, precisely as they did [in 1 76S].
The greatest care would have to be exercised so that the Caribs, friends of
the Dutch, sliould not come to know of it, otlierw ise tlie affair would fail.

B. C, V, 121.


. British Case.

They [Indians] were also from the earliest Dutch times largely employed, oil
an organized system, in growing- and preparing annatto [oriane dye], in
collecting balsam and other natural forest products, and in bringing these to
the Posts to be forwarded to the Dutch markets. Large numbers of Indians
were also habitually employed by the Dutch in well-established fislieries along
the whole coast from the Essequibo to the Orinoco, and even beyond, but more
especially in the mouths of the Waini, Barima, and Amakuru Rivers, and up
the right bank of the Orinoco as far as the Aguirre. B. C, g6.



1604. J. Maldonado Barnuevo.

As the Dutch go among them giving three yards of Rouen print and other
cotton stuffs, where the Spanish merchant only gives them one, and buying the
products of the land, and all the merchandise they have for sale, at double the
price paid or current in the country, they [Indians] will prefer their [Dutch]
trade and trafBc to that of Spain, as we see they now do with the English,
French and Flemish. B. C.-C, App., j.

1637. Corporation of Trinidad.

The forces of the enemy have increased in this Government on the mainland,
with new settlements amongthe Carib and Aruac nations, who are allied with
tlieni, and thev are settled on the River Essequibo.

When the Governor, Don Diego Lopez de Escobar, arrived to take possession
of his government in the Island of Trinidad, he found the enemy settled therein
in two forts and in alliance with the natives. B. C, I, log.

1638. Governor of Guiana.

With many gifts of articles of barter and clothing, which they g:ive to the
Indians, they hold all the country on their side, and being: tlius united and

in particular to the Caribs, who are in great numbers. Same, p. loi.

1638. Anonymous letter in the archives at Seville.

From the fortress [Essequibo], as already stated, they [Dutch] trade and
traffic with the Indians of the same settlements, and with those who are estab-
lished in Aguire and in Abarima and in Bauruma [Pomeroon].

Same, pp. iij-jid.

It is known for certain from the same Aruacs who are the ones who always
report these occurrences, that the Dutch sent to Flanders before they took
Guayana [Santo Thome] for ships and barter, in order to settle it throug'h the
influence they already possess with all tlie natives of the Orinoco and in-
terior, who are in communication with one another by land, . . . they will
do it [settle the Essequibo river] very easily through the good understand-
ing between the natives and themselves. Sa7ne, p. 116.

1638. Maldonado.

All [Indians of the lower Orinoco] trade and traffic witli the Dutch and
others of other nations. Same, p. 120.

The Caribs there [Essequibo] give to the Lutlierans the spices which they
have, as well to them as to those who arrive in ships which trade with those of
the said fort. Same, p. 134.

1690. West India Company (Zeeland Chamber).

The annatto is at present much in demand and at a good price ; therefore we
recommend you to employ all conceivable means to get as much dye as is possible,
and for that purpose to gather in iigain the dispersed Indians and stimulate
them thereto by promise of certain favorable conditions. U, S. Com., II, ig2.



1701, Official Diary at Kijkoveral.

February 5, [1701]. There also arrived some Indians with a small
quantity of poultry, who, having received payment for the same, again departed.

B. C.-C, App., 140.

1724. Court of Policy in Essequibo.

The Court [of Policy finds] it necessary to draw up these instructions [to
destroy the Maganout Indians] since the Akawois and Caribs who have been
killed, and are under tlie protection of tliis river, are a source of great
advantag'e to the same, being frequently sent up above, salting, by the Honour-
able Company and by the colonists. B. C, II, 2.

1733- Court of Policy in Essequibo.

Every possible means is being employed here to cultivate the trade with the
Indians, but the many branches into which the nation is split up, and the absence
of good interpreters, are great obstacles to success. Same, p. //.

1734. Father Joseph Gumilla.

Besides the profit from slaves the Dutch are moved to keep up their close
alliance with the Caribs, by the value of the balsam of Tolu (Aceite de Maria),
and of the annatto found on the Orinoco. B. C, III, 84.

1771. Commandant of Guayana.

Very few of the latter [Arawaks] have remained in the woods, for besides not
being a numerous race, they have now for many years been united to the Dutcli,
and incorporated in their Colonies both in relationship and other ties. Of the
Guarauno Indians there are many on the islands and creeks at the mouths of the
Orinoco, but it is difficult to reduce them, because the neighbourhood of the Dutch
of Esquivo gives then a sufficient supply of hatchets, knives, and other baubles
which they value highly, in exxhange for the fish and wax they obtain and pi-
rogues and launches which they build in their native woods. B. C, IV, Sj.


. British Case.

The Dutch employed them [Arawaks] at the Post of Moruka ; for the
fishery in the Orinoco, and the salting industry generally ; and also in the re-
capture of fugitive slaves. B. C, it.

Friendly relations with the native Indian tribes, and effective control over
them, were essential to the Dutch, for many reasons, but particularly because of
the presence of a hostile and turbulent slave element, . . . always ready for
revolt ... as well as ... to desert. ... To prevent desertion
of slaves the Dutch were compelled to depend upon the assistance of the
Caribs, Akawois, and Arawaks, and other Indian tribes, to whom it was cus-
tomary to pay rewards for each slave re-captured. Same, p. gs.



. British Case.

The services of Indians were iiidispcnsible in preventing' the escape of
slaves by sea.

The assistance of the Indians ... in the case of mutiny or the still
graver occurrence of a slave rebellion, was essential for the safety of the Colony.
It frequently happened that slaves instead of taking one or other of the routes to
foreign Colonies, made off to the bush, intrenched themselves in the swamps or
in the forests of the interior, and defied the Dutch to drive them out. At such
times the services of the Indians could not be dispensed with. B. C, gj.

Throughout the whole of the eighteenth century the Dutch had to contend
with repeated rising's of the negroes, in all of which the Indians gave them
assistance, and in one . . . the native tribes from every part of the Dutch
territory — from the Orinoco to Berbice — were actively employed in combined
military operations against tlie rebels. Sajne, pp. 9S'94-

. British Counter Case.

The relations between the Dutch and the Caribs . . . was an element of
strength, and materially confirmed and extended Dutch power in Guiana. Tlie
Caribs continually offered their assistance to the Dutch ; the Dntcli could call
upon them at any time to aid them either against revolted negroes, Dutch or
slave deserters, or Spanish aggression, but the Caribs offered their services to
friends, and came as allies of the strong, not as protectors of the weak.

B. C.-C, Sj.
1638. Maldonado.

The Caribs sell these Lutherans the Indian women they steal from the
villages, and thereby they are in their service. B. C, I, 120.

1724. Governor of Cumana.

As soon as I arrived in this Government . . . news was frequently sent
me that many foreigners — the Dutch from Surinam and Berbice — came to these
places trading, in vessels, and penetrating more than 100 leagues up the Orinoco,
and more than 30 above Angostura, the Fathers lamenting the trade carried on
Avilh the Caribs, the sale of tools, stuffs, wine, spirits, guns, and other arms,
which they exchanged for a large number of Indian slaves. B. C, III, j8.

By means of this fortress [at Angostura] your Majesty will prevent the trade
and commerce of foreigners with the Caribs. Same, p. yg.

1733. Commandeur in Essequibo.

The outrunner. Van der Burg, who has been among the tribes up in Esse-
quibo for more than a year altogether in order to trade, sent me in September
last one Creole with two slave women and some copaiba balsam, writing that
he would himself come down in November. B. C, II, 16.

1746. Commandeur in Essequibo.

I had information . . . that they [Spaniards] were thinking next year of
founding yet another [Mission] lower down [the Cuyuni] whereat the inhabi-
tants are very much aggrieved, and the Carib Indians a great deal more so,
since it perfectly closes tlie Slave Trallic in that direction from which alone
that nation derive their livelihood. Same, p. 46.



1750. Acting Cominandeur in Essequibo.

I immediately caused information thereof [oseapc of some slavos| to be ^ivcn
to the Carib and the Awawois nations, and entertain no doubt that llioy will be
taken alive or dead. B. C, II, yo.

1752. Director-General in Essequibo.

There is a rumour here that some negroes have made Iheir appearance np
in Esseqnibo, . . . I . . . have, under a promise of good payment,
strongly persuaded the Indians of the Akawois nation living below the Post
[Arinda] to g'o out and capture them, and they have promised me to do so.

Same, p. y6.

1755. Don Eugenio Alvarado.

Oraparene is a man of advanced intelligence, and openly replied that he did
not want to give up his Kingship and go into a state of misery in the Mission,
where he could not have authority, . . . [wives] freedom to capture poitos,
or to trade with his friends the Dutch. ... To these reasons he added many
others in favour of uncivilized life, and so he remains obstinately attached to that
sort of existence. Same, p. iii.

The Dutch Colonies have a kind of alliance with the many savage tribes
of Indians living in the forests, which run from north to south and separate
the province of Guiana from the Dutch settlements. They hold with these Indians
a commerce of barter and exchange, giving hatchets, knives, choppers, gaudy
ornaments, and glass beads in exchange for the poitos or slaves, which these
tribes of savages make between themselves. Same, p. 118.

1758. Prefect of Missions.

The account you [Ferreras] were good enough to give me, [Garriga] of your
journey, was as follows : . . . That the murderers [who destroyed the Mis-
sion Avechica] were some Caribs, who in the year (17)50 had rebelled in the set-
tlement of Tupuquen, commanded by the Indian Caiarivare, the Alcalde of the
said settlement of Tupuquen ; and that the said aggressors were living in the
interior, on the River Cuyuni and at the very mouth of the River Corumo ; that
they were living with some Dutchmen from the Colony of Essequibo,
engaged in Slave Traffic for the said Colony ; that the principal reason for
their murdering the said Captain was because he was founding a settlement in
the neighbourhood of Avechica, and thereby was closing the pass of the River
Usupama ; and . . . that the said Dutch, with these very same Caribs, are
still living at the mouth of the River Corumo, buying Indian slaves.

Same, p. 14^.

1760. Director-General in Essiquibo.

I . . . took measures to have the whole sea-coast guarded by Caribs,
so that it was impossible for the slaves to get to Orinoco. What I most feared
was that they might take the road through Cuyuni where, since the raid upon the
Post by the Spaniards there are no more Indians, and there was therefore no
means of stopping them. Same, p. 1S6.


AWAYS -(Continued*.

1760. Director-General in Essequibo.

I had sent waruing: to all the Posts, and had the coast guarded by the Carib
nation, so that it should be Impossible for the slaves to make off in that
direction. The road to Cuyuni was open to them, because since the raid upon
the Post there by the Spaniards the river has not been occupied, and the road
to Orinoco is an open and easy one. B. C, II, igy.

1 761. Governor of Cumana.

The Dutch . . . go by this river [Orinoco], and those of Mazaroni and
Cuyuni, protected by the Carib Indians, pillaging and capturing the Indians

that are not Caribs, from this Province, and reducing them to slavery, in the

same way as they do with the negroes, and sell them and employ them in their
plantations and farms. V. C, I 1,342.

1763. Don Jose Diguja.

[In the Upper Orinoco between 1579 and 1720] the Dutch, chiefly, bought
from the Caribs and carried away all the Indians they could, for the establish-
ment and cultivation of the plantations in their Colonies of Essequibo, Berbice,
Surinam and Corentin. B.C., Ill, 11.

[The Spaniards] found in that stronghold [Dutch Cuyuni post] . . . the
current account which the said Butch kept with the Caribs. Sa7ne, p. 20.

1768. West India Company (Zeeland Chamber).

Against the desertion of the slaves from the Colony to Orinoco we know no
other means of provision than the projected coast guards, Same, p. iSj.

In the meanwhile, the measures which have been taken, ... of encour-
aging the free Indians to bring in the runaways are . . . very good, if
carried out, but still it seems to us that they are in no way sufficient to effica-
ciously stop and hinder the runaways. Same, p. 1S4.

1 77 1. Director-General in Essequibo.

In all places where Caraibans are living in the neighborhood there is little
fear of desertion [of slaves]. B. C, I V, g6.

\'JJ2. Director-General in Essequibo.

The former Postholders in Maroco were able to do something to arrest the
progress of this evil [slaves running away], they having at least six or seven
hundred Indians around that Post, some of whom they could always have out at
sea, but the unauthorized attacks of the Spaniards have driven these natives away.

Same, p. tot.
1777. Court of Policy, Essequibo.

An order about ... the cultivation of friendship with the Indians,

Online LibraryRafael SeijasVenezuela-British Guiana boundary arbitration. Digest of evidence arranged according to subjects → online text (page 36 of 45)