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'File 9/5 Bahrain Reforms. Reforms in Pearling and Boat Registration' [‎3r] (20/434)

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The record is made up of 1 volume (207 folios). It was created in 4 Aug 1895-12 Feb 1930. It was written in English and Arabic. 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.

Transcription

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m& KARL ITOUSfRY. BAHRAIiS.
• OfMBHAX. for centuries the Persian Qulf hes been
famous for its pearls anfl at present the eentre
of the industry and the chief market of the
Gulf is Bahrain, During recent years important
Continental, Indian -nd Arab merchants, who used
to send their Agents, hare come themselves to
Bahrain.
The prosperity and almost the very
existence of Bahrain depends upon the Pearl
industry. Boat building and srII making, the
only local trades of any importance, are closely
connected vith the pearl industry. she state
revenue receives only a very small sum, directly,
irom the pearl industry, this being pearling
boat taxes, but indirectly it depends upon the
result of the pearling season. The imports
especially those of luxuries, increase and
decrease in proportion to the quality of the
season*
HUMBERS SMM.OYBD. Over 500 pearling craft are
registered in Bahrain and about 15,000 men

About this item

Content

The volume contains correspondence and reports relating to proposed reforms of the pearling industry in Bahrain. The majority of the correspondence takes place between the Bahrain Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. (Clive Day, who was the principle architect of the pearling industry reforms, and served from 1921 to 1926, superseded by Cyril Barrett), the Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. or his secretary, and the advisor to the Bahrain Government, Charles Belgrave.

The reforms proposed, and which are discussed at length throughout the volume include:

  • Economic reforms, with particular attention given to shares of the profits paid to divers, and the allowances paid to divers, and interest on their debts, through the Salifeh court. This aspect of the reforms was designed to reduce the state of debt slavery that many divers existed in towards their boat masters ( nakhudas The (usually Arab) captain or master of a local boat. );
  • The introduction of accounts books for all pearl divers;
  • Boat registration and pearl fishing licenses;
  • The introduction of a hospital boat intended to patrol the pearling banks, with medical staff on board who are capable of providing medical attention to pearl divers as required;
  • The advantages and disadvantages of permitting pearl merchants to use motor launches to reach the pearling boats, the use of which would place some merchants at an advantage over those travelling under sail power.

Items of note in the file include:

Extent and format
1 volume (207 folios)
Arrangement

The items in the volume have been arranged in approximate chronological order, from the earliest items at the front of the volume, to the latest at the end.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: The volume is foliated from the front cover to the inside back cover, using pencil numbers in the top-right corner of each recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. . An earlier, incomplete foliation sequence, using blue pencil circled numbers in the top right corner of rectos, runs from folios 24 to 66. The following foliation anomalies occur: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1d, 1e, 23a, 79a, 130a, 157a.

The following folios are fold-outs: 37, 42, 46-50, 52, 53, 60, 62, 70-73, 75-79, 79a, 84-86, 90, 92, 94, 96, 106, 111, 121-26, 149-54, 157, 157a, 161, 171, 177, 179, 183, 184, 187, 193.

Due to the binding of the volume, the text on some items runs very close to the gutter, making text more difficult to read.

Written in
English and Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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'File 9/5 Bahrain Reforms. Reforms in Pearling and Boat Registration' [‎3r] (20/434), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/2/132, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100023321595.0x000015> [accessed 6 December 2019]

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