Intended Colony at the Cape of Good Hope.
The following letter explains, in detail, the degree of co-operation which Government proposes to afford to those persons who may wish to emigrate from this country.
( Official Circular.)
“Downing-street. London, 1819. “The sufferings to which many individuals have been exposed, who have emigrated to his Majesty’s foreign possessions, unconnected, and unprovided with any capital, or even the means of support, having been very afflicting to themselves, and equally burdensome to the colonies to which they have proceeded, the Government have determined to confine the application of the money recently voted by Address in the House of Commons, to those persons who, possessing the means, will engage to carry out, at the least, ten ablebodied individuals above 18 years of age, with or without families, the Government always reserving to itself the right of selecting, from the several offers made to them, those which may prove, upon examination, to be most eligible.
“In order to give some security to the Government, that the persons undertaking to make these establishments have the means of doing so, every person engaging to take out the above-mentioned number of persons or families, shall deposit, at the rate of 10l. (to be repaid as hereinafter mentioned) for every family so taken out, provided that the family does not consist of more than one man, one woman, and two children under 14 years of age. All children ahove the number of two must be paid for, in addition to the deposit above-mentioned, in the proportion of 5l. for every person between the ages of 14 and 18.
“In consideration of this deposit, a passage shall be provided at the expence of Government for the settlers, who shall be victualled from the time of their embarkation until the time of their landing in the Colony.
“A grant of land, under the conditions hereafter specified, shall be made to him, at the rate of 100 acres for every such person or family whom he so takes out ; one-third of the sum advanced to Government on the outset, shall be repaid on landing, when the victualling at the expense of the Government shall cease. A further proportion of one-third shall be repaid, as soon as it shall be certified to the Governor of the Colony that the settlers, under the direction of the person taking them out, are actually located upon the lands assigned to them ; and the remainder at the expiration of three months from the date of their location.
“If any parishes in which there may be a redundancy of population, shall unite in selecting an intelligent individual to proceed to the Cape, with settlers under his direction, not less in number and of the description above-mentioned, and shall advance money in the proportion above-mentioned, the Government will grant land to such an individual at the rate of 100 acres for every head of a family, leaving the parish at liberty to make such conditions with the individual, or the settlers, as may be calculated to prevent the parish becoming again chargeable with the maintenance of such settlers, in the event of their return to this country.
“But no offers of this kind will be accepted, unless it shall be clear that the persons proposing to become settlers shall have distinctly given their consent, and that the head of each family is not infirm or incapable of work.
“It is further proposed, that in any case in which one hundred families proceed together, and apply for leave to carry out with them a minister of their own persuasion, Government will, upon their being actually located, assign a salary to the minister whom they may have selected to accompany them, if he shall be approved by the Secretary of State.
“The lands will be granted at a quit rent, to be fixed, which rent, however, will be remitted for the first 10 years ; and at the expiration of three years (during which the party, and a number of families, in the proportion of 1 for every 100 acres, must have resided on the estate) the land shall be measured at the expense of Government and the holder shall obtain, without fee, his title thereto, on a perpetual quit rent, not exceeding[?] in any case of 2l. sterling for every 100 acres subject, however to this clause[?] beyond the usual reservations*–that the land shall become forfeited to Government, in case the party shall abandone the estate, or not bring it into the cultivator within a given number of years. I am, “Your most obedient servant.”
* The usual reservations are the right of the Crown to mines of precious stones, of gold and silver, and to make such roads as may be necessary for the convenience of the Colony.
There are already three extensive settlements on the South East Coast of Africa, where the finest wheat is produced, with little labour, namely Algoa Bay, St. Catherine’s Bay, and the new settlement on the Knysua, a considerable river, which is navigable for large vessels to the Northward. There are also extensive and fertile lands towards Saldanha Bay. As the produce from the new colonists will consist of grain and as the markets of the Cape of Good Hope, the Isle of France, Brazils &c. will in all probability be soon overstocked, the settlers will look to the mother country for a market, when an unfavourable harvest renders the import necessary ; and in anticipation of this event, the merchants interested in the Cape trade intend, we understand, to make an application to Government respecting the Corn Laws, to put the corn from the Cape of Good Hope on the same footing as grain from the British North American colonies.
Citation: Aberdeen Journal (Aberdeen, United Kingdom), 28 July 1819, available at the Scissors and Paste Database, http://www.scissorsandpaste.net/149.