Report No.67 of 1863 detailing the tribes, trades and resources of the Gulf Littoral [6r] (11/58)
The record is made up of 29 folios. It was created in 13 Apr 1863. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.
This transcription is created automatically. It may contain errors.
for generosity; of the paucity of square rigged vessels in the roads, there is at
this moment not one of the straggling in from time to time of a single Bombay
Bngla, three parts in ballast, having dropped the bulk of her cargo at
Abbass or Lingah; of the closing of the native craft trade with India,
during the South-West Monsoon; of Bushire being a town containing some 10,000
inhabitants only; of the paucity of fodder and supplies along the Shiraz road; of the
smallness of the caravans, numbering from 50 to 60 mules, and finally on the fact
that when Bunder Abbass was blockaded a few years ago, and its trade thrown
for the moment along the Bushire road, the price of carriage at Bushire to Sheraz,
a distance of some 180 miles, rose from 15 or 17 Krans per mule to 80 Krans.*
56. The physical disadvantages of Bushire as a Port, are considerable. It is
a roadstead, only partially protected against the prevailing winds from the north
west. The anchorage is 4 miles from the landing place. Communication with
shipping by boats is always slow, either to or from the Bunder; and is sometimes
wholly cut off for days together, during a strong north-wester.
57. The Port enjoys a management differing from ours. Boats cannot go
off after sunset, nor move to land cargo until the manifest has been seen by the
Governor.f English trade is rated, under Treaty, in and out, at 5 per cent, with
out further inland demand. But native trade loses on the import, as compared
with ours; and, perhaps, in some articles, gains on the export; e. on exporta
tion of corn. Twice, since I arrived in the Gulf, now four months ago, the export
of corn has been interdicted, and an English Barque, for which corn had been
stored, when no prohibition existed, and, which, for the lading of this corn, had
foregone a cargo of dates a,t Busreh, was obliged, a few weeks past, to purchase
stone ballast at Bushire, and proceed in ballast to England, owing to a sudden
local interdict on corn. In one instance, the Governor relaxed the interdict, out
of friendly feeling towards me. I am sensible of the kindness. But trade cannot
thrive under considerations of personality or arbitrary interference. A British
merchant assured me that the prosperity of English trade at Bushire, hinged
much on the terms subsisting between the Resident and the Persian authorities.
Again, a flight of locusts, or absence of rain is sufficient cause for a sudden Corn
Law. Douceurs, &c. are said to be almost essential to the conduct of trade at all.
The Governments of countries are probably as good as the governed deserve. But
it is none the less true, that, among the principal difficulties in the development of
the Persian Gulf Historically used by the British to refer to the sea area between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Often referred to as The Gulf or the Arabian Gulf. trade, must be numbered that resulting from the action of Go
vernmental authority. It is just, however, to add that since the foregoing was
written, the Shah has disapproved his Governor's interdict.
58. Some few years ago, 6 to 7 squarerigged vessels came from Mauritius
annually, in ballast, and ran back, corn. This trade has ceased, or turned to
wards Kurrachee: owing, as I am assured, to the vexations it suffered in the Gult.
59. The Cotton trade at Bushire has, as elsewhere, received a considerable
impetus by the American Civil War. 60,000 Tabreez maunds (7^ Iks. each) have
been shipped, and it is said that, during the coming season, ten times that quantity
may be thrown on the market. Prices rose so high that it would have paid to
bring Cotton from Tabreez some 12 or 13 hundred miles on mules, and export it
at Bushire. Persia can grow Cotton from Tabreez West, to Meshed East, and
southward to the Cotton fields of Reshire, four miles from Bushire. These latter
* Note .—Of course carriage at Bushire being adjusted to its average trade, any sudden influx of
extraneous goods would have temporarily raised the rates of carriage to an arbitrary maximum. ^ Still,
the distance to Shiraz being so short, and the rise so enormous in rate, tend to show that the Bushire
trade cannot bear those calls, which really large trade usually can sustain without ruinous effects.
f The landing of goods and the embarkation of goods at Bushire are a monopoly in the hands of a
man called a Hamal Bashee. He farms this business and no person other than he is allowed to land or
embark goods. _ . . t> t>
It is true that it would be open to an iMiglish mercha.nt to introduce his own cargo Boats. But
then he must also have his own Boatmen; and these, not Persian subjects, otherwise they might bo
interfered with. .
In my opinion any steamer line in the Gulf Trade sliould render itself wholly independent O a the
shore, for the landing and embarkation of its goods.
About this item
Report from Pelly to the Chief Secretary to Government in the Political Department, Bombay, compiled in Bushire 13 April 1863.
The report details the tribes, trade and resources of the Gulf Littoral which is divided into seven areas according to their political administration. The report also includes a list of detailed statements of imports and exports at Bushire.
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- 29 folios
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Item foliated in the front top right hand corner of each folio with a pencil number enclosed in a circle.
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- English in Latin script View the complete information for this record
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Report No.67 of 1863 detailing the tribes, trades and resources of the Gulf Littoral [6r] (11/58), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, Mss Eur F126/48, ff 1-29, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100022698109.0x00000c> [accessed 28 January 2020]
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