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mind, which the Governor underwent from almost the first week
they found them; but that he would not aid in any manner either in discovering them, or in forcing them to the vessels. By this declaration he abided : and the consequence was, that the most barbarous of the captains generally lost those men who had contrived to get on shore ; for they were either concealed by the settlers out of compassion, or by some of the natives out of the jurisdiction of the colony, till their ships departed from the river.
On the 22d, the Governor, accompanied by Mr. Dawes, went to Robanna Island to take his leave of King Naimbainna. The King had been apprized of his coming, and had ordered a dinner to be prepared for him. The Governor took this opportunity of recommending Mr. Dawes in the strongest manner to his good will and kind offices. He solicited also for the colony a continuance of that friendship which had been so steadfastly manifested towards it. The good old king, who was indeed a worthy man, promised all that was asked of him; and it appeared by his subsequent conduct, that he never forgot his word. On taking leave of the Governor he presented him with a fat bull and a grisgris, or charm, for his future personal protection. This charm had been prepared some few days before by one of the Maraboo or Mahometan priests in the neighbourhood, at the King's particular request, and probably at some expense, for the purpose before mentioned. It consisted of a piece of writing paper. Upon it was drawn with red paint and ink an oblong rectangle, and which was ornamented with the same paint and ink both at the top and bottom and on the sides. The rectangle was then filled
with Arabic letters. These contained sentences from the Koran, and a declaration that God would protect the bearer from the injuries of men. At the dinner now rnentioned one Halsamannah, another Maraboo priest of the neighbourhood, happened to be present. He too wished to give the Governor a proof of his good wishes. Accordingly after dinner he drew up a similar charm upon paper, and presented him with it.
On thé 23d (Sunday) divine service was performed as usual. Strong land-breezes still continued, and for a great part of the day.
On the 24th a muster of the settlers was completed. This being Christmas-eve, the Nova Scotians fired volleys about the town, according to the American fashion, in honour of the season.
On the 25th at day-break the schoolmaster conducted the children under his care to different houses, in the town, at which they ushered in and welcomed the moining by the singing of
hymns. The men fired as before, and marched about withi drum and fife, wishing the officers a merry Christmas. Divine service was performed this day, and the Sacrament administered.
On the 26th the Governor went in a boat, atteuded by some of the gentlemen, up Pirates Bay. This bay was very deep. Its shores were bold, and covered with trees. On advancing up it, it had the appearance of a river. There were many windings and turnings, and it became at length so na row, that there was scarcely more than sufficient room for plying the oars.
Here trees grew quite into the water, so that it looked wild, or as in a state of nature. On going further up, the bottom began to grow muddy, and the water to appear stagnant.
The surf of the sea near Cape False, to which this bay extends, was heard distinctly at times as the boat was rowed along. This determined the party upon landing. Having left the boat and ascended one of the banks, they discovered a path, which after about thirty yards distance brought them upon the sea-beach near Cape False. It immediately appeared that the Cape Sierra Leone land might be easily insulated, if it were found either useful or necessary.
On the 27th the morning was hazy. At ten o'clock the thermometer was at 831°. Great efforts were making to get the Felicity ready for sea, which vessel was to take the Governor to England. At noon a brisk breeze sprung up from the Bullom shore, from which tract the wind is always strong, and in the rainy season often equal to a slight tornado.
On the 28th, the vessel being nearly ready, the Governor went round the town to take leave of the people. This he found a most painful task. The demonstrations, however, of respect, regard, and affection, which he received from all ranks, both from officers and people, blunted in some degree the sting at parting, and made the apprehended evil more tolerable. Some of the former were not satisfied with mere verbal declarations, but expressed the testimony of their regard in letters. The latter vied with each other in showing their gratitude, by contributing to his comfort on the voyage. One carried eggs, and another a chicken, from his own store to the vessel. Women, as well as men, made their separate presents, till at length the collection furnished a liberal supply. . On the 29th, having thus taken his leave of them personally, he went on board the Felicity, and weighed anchor at three in the afternoon. He was immediately saluted by guns from the fort, as well as krom the ships Amy and York, and by three cheers from the officers and settlers on shore. An unfortunate accident, however, occurred on the occasion : the gunner of the Amy care
lessly looked into one of the guns after it had been loaded; and as it had not been well spunged, it took fire and blew him overboard : all endeayours were made to catch him, and to get him into the boat, but in vain. This melancholy circumstance entirely took away the pleasure, which the Governor had otherwise received from what had been intended as a mark of public approbation at parting. Indeed it overwhelmed him : he would allow no salute to be returned, nor would he proceed immediately to sea; but he dropped down and anchored a few miles from the Settlement, and there continued for the night in order to show a concern and a respect appropriate to the solemn occasion. The next day he proceeded on his voyage ; and as the hills receded from his sight he poured upon them his benedictions, as well as upon the people around them; earnestly praying that he might live to see the day, when the little colony he had left would answer all the great purposes to Africa, for which it was so benevolently designed.
Thus ends the account of the Colony of Sierra Leone, as it was conducted by Governor Clarkson ; and, we may add, as it was conducted through great difficulties and perils. Indeed, one has only to wonder how he surmounted (but more especially in the early part of his administration, the difficulties of which were increased by a severe and long continued illness) those obstacles which presented themselves in his way. It was no easy thing, in the first place, to stand well with the native chiefs under the suspicion which the occupation of so large a tract of country, by such a number of armed persons, must have naturally excited as to the real object of the latter, and more particularly when this object was industriously misrepresented by all concerned in the slave-trade, who were almost the only persons who came to these parts. Notwithstanding this, the Governor, by being careful not to oppose rooted prejudices, and yet to act a sincere and downright part, always carried his point with the chiefs in question ; and so otherwise conducted himself throughout, as not only to secure their good will and respect, but also their friendship and esteem. The longer he staid among them the more he grew in their confidence. No war, nor even symptom of hostility, ever oceurred during his reign. Nay the savage king Jammy, of whom he had not time to take his leave, is reported to have shed tears when informed of his departure.
But of all the difficulties which he had to encounter, the greatest was that which arose out of the government of the colony itself. The constitution of it had been drawn up with great pains as well as with great ability; it was most excellent both in inten
tion and in theory; but, by being adapted to circumstances, (which one would have generally taken for an excellence,) it proved, as the colony happened to be then situated, to be very different in practice from what it had been originally designed. Had the Governor accepted of the government from the very first, or had only a few people gone out as settlers, it had been very simple, and there had probably been but one head with large discretionary powers : but, in the first place, the Governor volunteered his services only to collect the Nova Scotians and to go with them to Africa, after which period they were to cease; and in the second place, the number of those who went out as adventurers was almost five times more than had been supposed. Thus a larger field was at once opened to the Directors of the Company than they had ever had a notion of, both for their exertions and their care.
Hence every thing was to be furnished on a larger scale. Hence more offices became necessary; and as these were to be filled by persons with whose prudence and exemplary conduct the Directors were not likely to be personally acquainted, it was necessary that there should be suitable checks upon the latter. It was necessary also that the Governor himself (for it was then not known who was to fill this office) should be subject to a reasonable control. Thus it was ordained, that though in some instances, which were specified, he was to have the precedence, no less than seven officers were to have a seat in council and a vote there. Such a constitution might have done well at a later period, when difficulties had been surmounted and things had been brought into order : but in an infant-colony, where there was a necessity for unity of action, for prompt decision and immediate obedience, it did not answer. It proved tardy in its operations, and destitute of energy and vigour. By making no less than eight masters it gave birth also to great jealousies. Thus, when the Governor, on his first landing from Nova Scotia, found, as has been before related, that the Council were quarrelling with each other; when he found waste and extravagance; when he saw stores lying on the beach, which had been ordered out by different persons though there was no house to receive or shelter them; and when, as it was his duty to do, he attempted to put an end to these evils, some of the latter considered him as interfering with their privileges. Hints were thrown out very early, that they would check his power. Nor could he help himself; he was defeated in the very first salutary amendment which he proposed : he was unable to get any thing done in laying out the lots of land, though he had promised the Nova Scotians that this should be put in hand on their arrival, and though it was of the