Black and White Budget, Transvaal Special, No. 3

6 BLACK AND WHITE the natives, with common justice, the Boers were unconsciously forging their own. chains. In 1854 Potgieter fils was murdered while the “Apprentice Law ”soon followed his death, and practically established slavery and, during 1858, the“ Grond Wet” or “Fundamental Law” appeared—an enactment declaring that the people“ wi 1 admit of no equality of persons of colour with the white inhabitants, either instate or church.” This benighted policy was not confined to the “persons of colour.” A fanatic hatred, doubtless bred from uneasy suspicion of their own ignorance and. barbarism, induced the Boers to view all other men with distrust and dislike. For their superiors, as well as their inferiors, they had ample store of hatred and suspicion. The English traders, the missionaries, every messenger from a worthier and nobler civilisation, suffered like ignominy and insult and the spirit of the Republic maybe seen clearly exhibited in the actions of that commando which, sent out to work reprisals on the unfortunate savages, amused itself by sacking Doctor Livingstone’s house and despoiling his goods in 1852. During 1^57 the States fell out between themselves, and Pretorius His invaded the Orange Free State the dispute was settled without blood, but Pretorius failed of his desire to unite the underStates one leaden/'ip. Ten years later, however, he began extending the borders of his own Republic in divers directions—to Lake Ngami on the west, and Delagoa Bay upon the east which enterprises naturally raised some difficulties with England on the one hand, Portugal on the other. In 1875 the possession of Delagoa Bay was made good and Portugal’s claim affirmed, while the boundary questions in which England had been interested were terminated by the award of Lieut.-Governor Keate of Natal, whose decision led to the resignation of President Pretorius. In 1875 the monstrous Fundamental Law begot renewed fighting with the natives, and while President Burgers was in Europe, confusion became worse confounded. Upon his- return he found chaos reigning. Faced with repeated reverses, an empty treasury, a ruined credit, and a practically bankrupt state, there was nothing for it but to call upon England for aid and in 1877, at the Boer’s desire, we intervened. Sir Theophilus Shepstone- annexe^ the Transvaal by proclamation at that date, and subsequently appointed Sir Owen Lanyon as the British administrator. Progress, however, has always been the Boer bugbear. After a few years of British policy, forgetting to whom thanks were due for their improved credit and increasing prosperity, the country revolted, with results familiar enough to all who are posted in the history of yesterday. During the spring of 1881 various sharp contests with British forces occurred, and, as the Boers were for the most part successful in these preliminary brushes, a craven Government at homemade instant peace, and restored the Republic under the “suzerainty ”of her Majesty. In 1883 President Paul Kruger took up the reins and began conducting his faithful Burghers downhill to their doom. The Convention of London, 1884, recognised his State as the South African Republic, and modified the British “suzerainty,” a term whose significance nobody understood better than President Kruger—sixteen years ago, though he has forgotten since. During 1885 was made the important proclamation of the British Protectorate over Bechuanaland—a step taken, first, to arrest the westward advance of the Boers into half a dozen neigHln^ring territories, and secondly to preserve our great trade route from Cape Colony througB^^opetown to the Zambesi. A year latePffesh discoveries of rich auriferous deposits were made in the Transvaal, and a great influx of Englishmen followed. From that time forward there is no need to recapitulate the history of events. The old policy—a poison that is part of their life’s blood—has been pursued throughout the story by those in authority. Their avarice wakened at the sight of the gold in their midst those who discovered it. who worked it. who built the later prosperity of the entire State, have been treated like the black population before them the terms by which the Boers hold their country are ignored and believing in their infatuated madness that the long-cherished dream of a Boer South Africa can now be turned to fact by the might of their own puny arm, this unfortunate, ignorant, misled people stand before a world that gazes more in sorrow than in anger at the tale of their gigantic folly. The Rise of the Boer Republic is written, and the book of it is closed. Like the viper of fable, these men have stung their greatest benefactor like the viper, they must pay the penalty. England is used to see that her might is founded upon right before she employs it. and never within her history has she drawn sword to juster purpose than to-day.
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