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WHITE, COLOURED, AND NEGRO
BY MRS. CARMICHAEL,
FIVE YEARS A RESIDENT IN ST. VINCENT AND TRINIDAD.
IN TWO VOLUMES.
VOL. I. 2.
WHITTAKER, TREACHER, AND CO.
IN justice to myself, it is necessary to state that these volumes have not been got up for an occasion. The whole of the first, and part of the second volume, were prepared some time ago, before the agitation of the West India question by the present government; and the manuscript was then on the point of publication by an eminent house, with the special recommendation of an influential body of Circumstances, however, occurred to suspend the negotiation; and when I consider that, in return for patronage, more might, perhaps, have been considered due from me than it would have been in my power to give, I am not sorry that my volumes now stand upon their own imperfect merits.
Although in my sketches of the general management of an estate, and of the social condition of the black population of the colonies, I have been frequently obliged to speak of matters intimately connected with the question now before Parliament; a great part of my work has no relation to it, was not written in reference to it, and might be pub
lished with equal propriety at any earlier or later period, as at this moment, since the domestic manners and social condition of a people are little affected by a legislative enactment. At the same time, there is little that I have written that has not an indirect bearing upon the matters now in progress; for it must be obvious, that in legislating upon the condition of a people, an intimate acquaintance with the character, manners, morals, and peculiarities of that people, is indispensable towards wise and wholesome legislation.
These pages are little else than an accumulation of facts; the results of personal experience and attentive observation: and if, at times, they warrant conclusions adverse to popular opinions, I can only say that I record facts, for which alone I am answerable, not for the conclusions to which they lead.
I am fearful that some inaccuracies, particularly in Negro language, may be found in these pages; and can only plead, as an apology for them, my absence from England while the work has been printed.