William Henry Parr Greswell.

Outlines of British colonisation online

. (page 25 of 31)
Online LibraryWilliam Henry Parr GreswellOutlines of British colonisation → online text (page 25 of 31)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

1500. Cortereal reaches Labrador.

1524. Verrazano explores the coasts of North America.

288 British Colonisation

1534. Jacques Cartier ascends the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
1608. Champlain founds Quebec.

1628. Richelieu organises 'The Company of a Hundred Asso-

1642. Montreal built by Maisonneuve.
1666. Father Marquette sails for Canada.
1682. La Salle discovers the mouth of the Mississippi.
1689. De Frontenac Governor of Canada.
1696 D'Iberville in Hudson's Bay.
1697. Treaty of Ryswick.
1699. D'Iberville in Louisiana.
1713. Treaty of Utrecht.
1742. Verendrye sights the Rockies.
1756. Montcalm in Canada.
1759. Quebec taken by Wolfe.
1763. Treaty of Paris.

Canada a British Colony.

1763. Proclamation of George ill. offering lands to emigrants.

1774. Quebec Act passed.

1775. The Americans attack Canada.
1777. Burgoyne's defeat.

1783. Treaty of Paris.

1783. United Empire loyalists colonise New Brunswick and Nova


1784. Emigration of United Empire loyalists to Upper Canada.
1789. Alexander Mackenzie navigates the Mackenzie River.
1791. Upper Canada separated from Lower Canada.

1793. Alexander Mackenzie crosses the Rockies to Pacific.

1803. Lord Selkirk leads a colony to Prince Edward Island.

1806. The Berlin Decrees.

1807. Orders in Council.

1812. Selkirk settlers on the Red River.

1812-15. War between Canada and the United States.

1837. Lord Durham in Canada.

1841. The union of Upper and Lower Canada.

1842. The Ashburton Treaty settling Maine frontier.

1866. Fenian invasion of Canada,

1867. Confederation Act passed.
1871. June i, Dominion Day.

Appendices 289

1872. The boundary of 49 settled between Canada and United

1885. Louis Kiel executed.

1886. The Canadian Pacific Railway finished.
1891. Census of the Dominion.


Area. 69 square miles.

Divisions. The settlement consists of (i) the island of St.
Mary, (2) British Combo ; (3) Albreda, (4) the Ceded Mile,
(5) Macarthy's Island.

Physical Features. The Gambia is one of the largest rivers of
Western Africa, and falls into the Atlantic by a large estuary
nearly twenty-seven miles across. This river forms sandbank and
islands, which are low-lying, swampy, and unhealthy.

Population. In 1881 there were only about forty white inhabi-
tants. Now there is a police force of 1 10, and a detachment of
the West India Regiment. The whole population, white and
coloured, was (1891) 14,266.

Chief Town. Bathurst (6000).

Government. The Gambia is a Crown colony governed by an
Administrator, aided by an Executive Council and by a Legislative
Council of six.

Trade. Imports (1891), ,172,118. Exports, ,180,052. 'Gambia
drew [1872-86] a fourth of its imports from Sierra Leone, only 38
per cent, from the United Kingdom, and 35 per cent, from West
African ports, the United States, and France. It exported 8 per
cent, to the United Kingdom, and 88 per cent, to foreign countries,
of which the greater portion went to France, and the remainder to
West African ports, Madeira, the United States, and Italy, with a
trifle to Sierra Leone and Gibraltar.' 1

Products. Ground nuts, hides, beeswax, rice, cotton, india-
rubber, cola nuts. The ground nut is the staple product from
which oil is extracted.

Revenue. 1891, 31,038. Expenditure ', ,27,697.

1 In 1891, imports from United Kingdom, 84,798 ; exports to, .37,522,


290 British Colonisation

Defence. A police force and a detachment of the West India
Regiment, as above stated.

Communication. There are no railroads, but Bathurst is in
communication with Europe by means of four telegraph cables.
Liverpool steamers call every fortnight. The river is the main

Chief Dates.

1588. The Elizabethan Charter.
1618. Formation of a West African Company.
1821. Annexed to Sierra Leone.
1843. Created a colony.
1866. Absorbed under the general government of West African

1 888. Finally separated.


Area. 4000 square miles.

Physical Features. Sierra Leone proper is a peninsula of an
area of 300 square miles. It is mountainous, and very picturesque.
The coast-line from the Skarcies River on the north to the Mannah
River on the south, is malarious and unhealthy, extending for 180
miles. There are several islands, notably Sherbro' Island, and
many rivers. The harbour of Freetown is the only good harbour
on the West Coast of Africa between Cape Verde Islands and
Fernando Po.

Population. 1891, 174,835, of whom only 210 are resident

Chief Town. Freetown (30,033).

Government. Sierra Leone is a Crown colony, administered by
a Governor and an Executive of five, and a Legislative Council,
the latter being composed of the former, with the addition of three
unofficial members nominated by the Crown.

Trade. Imports (1891), ,453,375- Exports, ,477,656. With
i egard to the distribution of trade, ' Sierra Leone drew a larger
proportion of its imports from the United Kingdom than either of
its sister colonies, viz. 70 per cent (1872-86). The balance was
drawn chiefly from the United States, Germany, France, and
West African ports. Of the exports 37 per cent, were shipped to
the United Kingdom. In 1891, imports from the United Kingdom
were ( ^345,3 I ; exports 10^218,294.

Appendices 29 1

Products. Palm oil, palm kernels, rubber, gum, camwood,
benni-seed, and ground nuts.

Revenue. 1891, ,89,869. Expenditure, ,77,965.

Public Debt. 1891,^50,000.

Public Works. As British influence is confined mainly to the
littoral, there are no public works of importance, although the
route to the plateaux of the interior is shorter here than elsewhere.

Defence. Freetown harbour has been strongly fortified, and is a
coaling-station for the Royal Navy.

Communication. Liverpool is the mart where Sierra Leone
produce is chiefly taken. It is 3000 miles distant, and the voyage
takes about 15 to 16 days.

Chief Dates.

1787. Ceded to England by native chiefs.
1791. Charter of Sierra Leone Company.
1807. Sierra Leone transferred to the Crown.
1821. Incorporated as part of 'Colony of West African Settle-

1862. British Kwaia and Sherbro' annexed.
1879. Skarcies River annexed.
1884. Mannah River annexed.


In connection with Sierra Leone the United States of Liberia,
recognised by the European Powers, deserve a short notice. It is
a negro republic, first founded by the American Philanthropic
Colonisation Society in 1820, whither liberated slaves were sent.
The names of Freetown in Sierra Leone, and Liberia itself, indi-
cate the original purpose of the British colony and of the American
settlement. It was to find a place in their own country for the
emancipated negroes. Monrovia, the chief town of Liberia, was
so called after the celebrated American President. From the
beginning the principle of self-government has been fully acknow-
ledged. In 1833 and 1835 a Quaker colony came to Liberia from
Pennsylvania, the new arrivals landing in Grand Bassa.

The area of Liberia is about 35,000 square miles, with 700 miles
of coast, along which there are many openings for British trade.
The population is said to be 18,000 to 20,000 civilised negroes, and

292 British Colonisation

more than 100,000 African natives. The climate is said to be the
hottest in the world. The country towards the interior rises in
two main terraces. The second terrace is known as the Kong
Mountains. Here gold mines are reported to exist. The native
products are chiefly palm oil, camwood, ivory, and gold dust.
Liberian coffee is well known. Liberian influence extends many
hundred miles towards the interior. Here, then, is an opportunity
for the extension of British influence.


Area. 38,665 square miles.

Physical Features. 1 The littoral of the Gold Coast, with the
exception of a semi-desert patch near Akkra, is of the same moist,
equatorial character in its climate and scenery as might be pre-
sumed from its position. The typical West African forest country
ends, however, on the northern frontiers of Ashanti, and the
characteristic park-like grass land scenery of Central Africa begins
in the plains through which the Upper Volta flows.' The length
of the coast-line is about 350 miles. There is no good harbour,
and goods and passengers are landed in surf boats.

Population. 1891, 1,500,000, of whom about 150 are Europeans.

Chief Towns. The most important trading ports and settle-
ments are Newtown, Axim, Dixcove, Secondee, Elmina, Cape
Coast Castle, Anamaboe, Salt Pond, Winnebah, Akkra (the seat of
government), Addah, Quettah.

Government. The Gold Coast is administered by a Governor,
aided by an Executive and Legislative Council, all nominated by
the Crown.

Trade. Imports, 1891, ,665,781. Exports, ,684,305. As to
the distribution of trade (1872-86), 'the Gold Coast imported 63
per cent, from the United Kingdom, and exported 48 per cent.
Its chief foreign trade was with the United States, but it exported
largely to Germany.' *

Products. Palm oil and palm kernels are the staple products.
Gold, india-rubber, monkey-skins, ivory, copra, gum copal, cam-
wood, and benni-seed are also exported. The natives work gold
ornaments, such as rings, and weave cloth.

Revenue. 1891,^1 86,02 2 . Expenditure, 1 3 3,407,

Public Works. There is no railway, and hardly any roads.

1 In 1891, imports from United Kingdom, 483,393] exports to, ,545,493.

Appendices 293

There are about 200 miles of telegraph in the colony connecting
posts along the coast-line.

Defence. A garrison of 200 men and officers of the West India
Regiment stationed at Cape Coast. There is also a constabulary
of 800 men.

Communication. Liverpool is the chief mart, distant 3900
miles. The route is vid Madeira. Length of passage, 20 or 30

Chief Dates.

1471. Elmina discovered by Portuguese.

1672. Royal African Company.

1750. African Company of Merchants.

1821. African Company dissolved.

1824. Ashanti War.

1831. Peace between English, Fantis, and Ashantis.

1850. Akkra, Addah purchased from Denmark.

1872. Ashanti War.

1 88 1. Death of King Coffee.


Area. 1071 square miles. Lagos Island has an area of 3!
square miles.

Physical Features. * Lagos has few natural advantages to boast
of. Its dangerous and shallow bar makes the entrance to its
capital impracticable to any but small river steamers. It has a
certain amount of natural canals, a network of creeks running
right through the colony at a short distance from the coast ; but
there is no other place on its littoral between the French boundary
at Appa and the River Benin (where the colony is supposed to
terminate on the east) where a landing can be safely effected on
account of the heavy surf.' l

Population. 85,607, of whom about 100 are Europeans.

Chief Town. Lagos, termed the ' Liverpool of West Africa, 3
with a population of 60,000, is the largest town on the West
African coast.

Government. Lagos is a Crown colony, administered by a
Governor, aided by an Executive and Legislative Council, the latter
including three non-official officers.

Trade. Imports, 1891, ^650,392. Exports, ^717,643. As to
1 H. H. Johnston.

294 British Colonisation

the distribution of its trade (1872-86), ' Lagos drew 54 per cent, of
imports from the United Kingdom, and 46 per cent, from foreign
countries. It exported 32 per cent, to the United Kingdom, and
68 per cent, to foreign countries. Germany was its chief market
for both imports and exports, to which were added France and
West African French possessions for exports. 3 1

Products. Palm oil and palm kernels are the staple products.

Revenue. 1891, ,78,625. Expenditure, 66,388.

Communication. Liverpool is the chief mart, from which Lagos
is distant 4279 miles. It is 1203 miles from Freetown, 315 from
Cape Coast. There are no railways or telegraphs in the interior, but
Lagos Island is in telegraphic communication with Congo South
Africa on the south, and with the Gold Coast and Europe on the
north. Internal communication is along the numerous lagoons.

Chief Dates.

1851. First British interference.

1866. Lagos part of ' Colony of West African Settlements.'

1874. Lagos part of Gold Coast Colony.

1886. Lagos made a separate colony.


There are no accurate statistics available to show the precise
area, population, trade, etc., of the Niger Protectorate. The Com-
pany is said to possess no less than 1 50 factories. As regards
administration, the native chiefs are interfered with as little as
possible. British consuls, acting under the Secretary of State,
exercise a great deal of influence. Palm oil, kernels, ivory, india-
rubber, shea-butter, and benni-seed are the chief expoits. Tele-
graphic communication is via Lagos. Consular jurisdiction is
exercised at the chief ports along the rivers. Steamers navigate
the Niger 460 miles from the sea, and for 450 miles up the Benue.

i In 1891, imports from United Kingdom, 435,388 ; exports to, 285,822.

Appendices 295


The present possessions of Great Britain in South Africa are
(i) the Cape Colony, (2) Natal, (3) Basutoland, (4) British Bechu-
analand, (5) Zululand, (6) Mashonaland. In the following districts
and countries her influence, although not exercised in the task of
direct administration, is supreme : viz. Pondoland, Amatongaland,
Swazieland, the Bechuanaland Protectorate. In addition, Great
Britain has residents at the kraals of Lobengula, King of the Mata-
bele, and Gungunhana, King of Gazaland, the two most powerful
chiefs now left in Africa south of the Zambesi.


Area. 221,311 square miles.

Divisions. The colony is divided into eight electoral provinces :
(i) the Western, (2) North- Western, (3) South- Western, (4) Mid-
land, (5) South-Eastern, (6) North-Eastern, (7) Eastern, (8) the
Diamond Fields, or Griqualand West.

Physical Features. The land rises from the sea in distinct
terraces till the interior plateaux are reached, which are high and
healthy. Water is scarce, and no mountain rises to the height of
eternal snow. The great plains of the interior are called * karroos.'
The Kalihari Desert is a notable feature on the west.

Population. 1891, 1,525,739, of whom 376,812 were European,
847,542 aboriginal, 301,385 coloured.

With regard to the distribution of races in urban and rural areas,
it has been ascertained (1891) to be as follows :

Urban Rural Total

Areas. Areas. Population.

Europeans. . . 154,541 222,274 376,812
Aboriginal. . . 49,763 797,779 847,542

All others coloured . 114,473 186,912 301,385

318,777 1,206,965 1,525,739

Nearly all the aboriginal or Kaffir race live in the rural areas,
nearly half the Europeans in the urban areas, proving that cen-
tralisation goes on in South Africa as elsewhere.

296 British Colonisation

According to a census of religious sects in 1891, the

Dutch Reformed Church counted 297,983 persons.
Church of England 139,058

Wesleyan Methodists 106,132

Roman Catholics ,, 17,219

Moravians 16,297

The Congregationalists, Independents, and London Missionary
Society counted 65,737 ; the Presbyterians and United Presby-
terians numbered 33,000. Fully 750,000 persons, white and
coloured, professed no religion at all.

Chief Towns. Cape Town, 51,083; Port Elizabeth, 23,052;
Kimberley, 28,643 ; Grahamstown, 10,436 ; East London, 6858.

Government. The Cape Colony enjoys responsible govern-
ment. The Governor is the representative of the Queen, and
holds also the office of High Commissioner of South Africa. The
Cape Legislature consists of the Legislative Council of 22 members,
the Legislative Assembly of 76 members representing the above-
mentioned electoral provinces, both Houses being elected by
same voters.

Trade. Total imports, 1891, ,8,582,776. Exports, .11,131,024.
'The trade of the Cape (1872-86) was chiefly with the United
Kingdom, viz. 78 per cent, of imports and 94 per cent, of exports.
Its imports from British possessions were 14 per cent., and exports
to them only i per cent. Its foreign trade amounted to 9 and
4 per cent, of imports and exports respectively. After the United
Kingdom the chief imports were from Natal, South Australia,
Brazil, and the United States' (the articles imported being chiefly
flour and wheat from South Australia, coffee from Brazil, and
agricultural machinery from the United States). 'The exports to
any single country except the United Kingdom were insignificant.' 1
Products. Diamonds, wool, copper ore, angora hair, ostrich
feathers, skins, wine, fruit. The gold exported through Cape ports
comes from the Transvaal. The annual value of diamonds exported
is about ,4,000,000 worth, the gold more than ,2,500,000. More
than three-quarters of Cape exports must be put to the account of
minerals and gems.

Revenue. 1891, ^4,143,876. Expenditure, ,4,308,762.
Public Debt.M^ to December 31, 1891, .24,832,767.
Public Works. Railways, 1 599 miles. Telegraphs, 1 1,325 miles.
1 In 1891, imports from the United Kingdom, 7,030,503 ; exports to,

Appendices 297

Harbours at Table Bay and East London constructed at vast ex-
pense. Roads and bridges connect all parts of the colony together.

Defence. Cape Mounted Rifles, 819 ; Cape police, 704. A sum
of about ;i 50,000 is voted annually for colonial defence purposes,
including defence of Table Bay. There are also thirty volunteer
corps, numbering between 4000 and 5000 men. The Burghers con-
stitute third line of defence, and correspond to the reserve militia
of Canada. The Imperial garrison at Cape Town and Wynberg
musters about 1300.

Communication. Table Bay is 6000 miles distant from Ply-
mouth. The time occupied is twenty days, sometimes seventeen
days. The Scot has done the voyage in fifteen days. The two
lines are the Union Steamship Company and the Castle Line,
both possessing a magnificent fleet of steamers whose passages
have been remarkable for their safety and punctuality.

Chief Dates.

1486. Discovery of the Cape.
1620. Proclamation of British authority by Shillinge and Fitz-


1651. Dutch occupation.
1687. Immigration of French refugees.
1795. First British occupation.
1802. Peace of Amiens.

1806. Second British occupation.

1 807. Abolition of the slave trade.

1820. The English settlers land at Algoa Bay.

1819. Kaffir War.

1834. Slave emancipation.

1834. Kaffir War.

1846-53. Kaffir Wars. The ' War of the Axe.'

1852. First Transvaal Republic founded.

1854. The Orange Free State founded.

1857. Kaffir War.

1867. Discovery of diamonds.

1871. The Diamond Fields proclaimed a colony.

1872. Introduction of responsible government.

1877. Sir Bartle Frere Governor of the Cape.

1878. Kaffir War.

1879. Basuto War.

1881-1889. Governorship of Sir Hercules Robinson.

298 British Colonisation


Area. 20,461 square miles.

Divisions. The colony is divided into eight counties : (i) Pieter-
maritzburg, (2) Durban, (3) Victoria, (4) Umvoti, (5) Klip River,
(6) Weenen, (7) Alfred, (8) Alexandra.

Physical Features. The land rises in terraces to the interior.
The chief mountain range runs parallel with the coast. The rivers
are numerous and flooded in the summer. There are no natural
harbours along the coast.

Population. 1891, 543,983, of whom 46,788 are white, 41,142
Indians, 455,913 Kaffirs.

Chief Towns. Durban, 9000; Pietermaritzburg, 9251.

Government. Natal is administered by a Governor, aided by an
Executive Council and a Legislative Assembly of thirty-one mem-
bers, twenty-four of whom are elected by the colonists, five are
ex ojficio, and two nominated by the Government.

Trade. Imports, 1891, ,3,647,494. Exports, ,1,458,082.
' Natal resembles the Cape of Good Hope in the character of its
trade (1872-86). It drew 81 per cent, of imports from the United
Kingdom, and sent thither 79 per cent, of its exports. It shipped,
however, a considerable amount to the Cape. Its foreign trade
was of small amount, 7 per cent, and 4 per cent, respectively.' *

Products. Wool, coal, gold, sugar, angora hair, and skins.

Revenue. 1891, ^1,318,769. Expenditure, .1,393,896.

Public Zte/. 1891, ^7,170,354.

Public Works. There are 340 miles of railway. Telegraph
wires connect every place of importance. The harbour works at
Port Natal are a most important public work.

Defence. There are about 1 500 colonists, volunteers and others,
enlisted for the purposes of defence. There is generally a garrison
of 1200 Imperial troops at Pietermaritzburg. The port of Durban
is strongly fortified.

Communication. Natal is 845 miles distant from Cape Town,
which is about 6000 miles from Plymouth, and is, therefore, two or
three days further from England than Cape Town. The colony is
300 miles from Delagoa Bay and 1 770 from Zanzibar. The Eastern
Submarine Telegraph Cable is landed on Natal shores, connecting
with the East and with Europe.

1 In 1891, imports from the United Kingdom, 2,789,130 > exports to,

Appendices 299

Chief Dates.

1497. Natal discovered by Vasco da Gama.

1837. Boer settlement.

1843. English rule proclaimed.

1856. Natal a separate colony.

1887. Zululand a British colony.

1891-2. Agitation for responsible government.


Area. 10,293 square miles.

Divisions. (i) Maseru, (2) Mafeting, (3) Leribe.

Physical Features. Mountainous. Basutoland has been called
the Switzerland of South Africa.

Population. 1891, 218,324 natives ; 578 Europeans.

Chief Town. Maseru (763).

Government. Basutoland is administered by a Resident Com-
missioner, acting under the High Commissioner. The Basutos
have a certain amount of local government.

Trade. The Basutos are large purchasers of manufactures.

Products. Basutoland is a great cattle-rearing and grain-
producing country.

Revenue. 1 890, ^41,784. Expenditure, ^40,825.

Communication. Basutoland is 7668 miles from London. It is
reached best through the Cape Colony.

Chief Dates.

1818. The Basutos formed into a nation.

1852. Basuto War with British.

1856. Basuto War with the Orange Free State.

1868. Basutoland taken under the British Crown.

1871. Basutoland annexed to the Cape.

1879. Moirosis W T ar.

1 880. Basuto War with the Cape Colony.

1884. Basutoland again taken under the British Crown.


Area. 60,000 square miles, the Bechuanaland Protectorate
being 162,000 square miles.

3OO British Colonisation

Physical Features. British Bechuanaland lies at a high eleva-
tion about 4000 feet to 500x3 feet above the level of the sea. The
scenery is monotonous, the feature of the landscape being broad,
open, mimosa-clad plains. The rivers are swollen in winter, but
soon dry up. Thunder-storms and dust-storms are frequent in their
season the former in summer and the latter in winter. The
climate is dry and healthy.

Population. 1600 Europeans, 43,985 natives.

Towns. Vryburg, Mafeking, Taungs.

Government. British Bechuanaland is governed by an Adminis-
trator under the High Commissioner of South Africa.

Trade. The imports, which come almost entirely from the
Cape, are textiles, hardware, alcohol. The exports go to the
Kimberley market, and consist of mealies, wool, hides, wood.

Products. Maize, or mealies, and cattle are the chief products.

Revenue. 1891, ^52,029 ; Parliamentary grant, ;n5 5 99i-
Expenditure, ^153,902.

Defence. The Bechuanaland Border Police, of 500 men.

Communication. The railway is extended from Kimberley, in
the Cape Colony, to Vryburg and Mafeking ; the telegraph (over-
land) wire passes through British Bechuanaland to Matabeleland
and Mashonaland. The colony is easily reached from Kimberley.
On the 30th September 1885, British Bechuanaland was declared
to be a British colony. With regard to Khama's country, or the
Bechuanaland Protectorate, it resembles, generally speaking,
British Bechuanaland. England's influence is paramount over
these immense areas up to the Zambesi.


Area. 8900 square miles.

Physical Features. Much of the land on the east, and along the
coast, consists of broad, grassy, undulating plains. In the interior
are deep forests.

Population. 400,000. There are 300 troops at Etshowe.

Government. The colony is administered by a Resident Com-
missioner at Etshowe, under the Governor of Natal.

Products. Cattle and mealies chiefly.

Revenue. \ 890, 4 1 ,674. Expenditure, ,29,732.

Appendices 301

Chief Dates.

1800. Beginning of the Zulu nation.

Online LibraryWilliam Henry Parr GreswellOutlines of British colonisation → online text (page 25 of 31)