‘File 5/201 Manumission of slaves and rules relating to cases arising out of the pearling industry’ [8v] (23/50)
The record is made up of 1 volume (21 folios). It was created in 28 Oct 1918-1 Nov 1918. 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.
slave either informs the Munshi A secretary or political assistant working in the British administration in the Gulf, often also providing linguistic interpretation. that the slave may be freed, when he finds him
to be of recent importation or of date subsequent to the Treaty of 1873, or in
doubtful cases, when the date of the slave's importation cannot be clearly
ascertained, His Highness requests that the slave maybe detained for from 10 to
15 days pending further investigation or the arrival of his master.
In the now rare cases of slaves imported before 1873 claiming freedom,
the Sultan is not asked to agree to their manumission unless cruelty or
inhuman treatment is proved, in which case freedom is given with the consent
of the Sultan ; otherwise when slaves not entitled to freedom under the treaty,
appear to be well fed and clothed and in good condition, they are returned to
their masters by the Sultan, who causes the masters to sign a bond by which
they undertake to treat the slaves thus returned with kindness.
In the event of British Indian subjects or subjects of Native States
taking refuge in the Maskat Agency An office of the British Government and, earlier, of the East India Company. from a state of pseudo slavery, their free
dom has been demanded, as of right, from His Highness and admitted by him
as a matter of course, on the principle that the reduction of such persons to a
state of slavery can under no circumstances be legal. Of this category the
most likely case to occur is that of indigent Baluchis from Kalat-Mekran,
Agreement of 1847, re-affirmed in the case of the Chiefs of Shargah and
Abu Dhabi in 1873 (Aitchison, volume XII, pages 178 and 184).
Certificates are granted by or on the specific authority of the Hesident
after investigation, on report by the Native Residency A diplomatic office of the British Government established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. Agent, and after
consideration of the views of the Shaikh concerned when such are put forward.
(i) Experience shows that there is a disposition to use the word " slave "
as a synonym for " negro" in correspondence. This should be avoided. There
is a large free negro population in the Gulf and it does not at all follow that
because a man is a negro he is necessarily a slave, nor is the converse the case,
viz., that a slave is necessarily a negro. He may be a Mekrani or an individual
of other denomination.
(ii) If a slave has served his master for a long time, the probability is
that the cause of his desire for freedom is of recent origin, and as it is very
seldom that a negro slave can really be repatriated in practice, it is often
more in his interest that a reconciliation be effected between master and slave
by the execution of an undertaking from the former to meet the slave's wishes
in some particular respect and treat him better.
(iii) As regards negroes who claim to be slaves, care should be taken
to ascertain that they are really bonded slaves and not free men and pearl
divers who have run away to evade the liabilities which they so readily incur.
It oi the toiuner category they should be dealt with as above indicated, but if
the latter, arrangements should be made whenever possible to have the claims
•against^them decided by a Salifa Court, according to the usages of the nearl
diving industry. D
In this connection reference is invited to the Trucial Coast The historic term used by the British to refer to the Gulf coast of Trucial Oman, now called United Arab Emirates. Pearl Divers
• Not with this. Agreement, 1879 (copy attached*).
i l v) Sub-offices should not corresponu^a this connection direct with the
Residency A diplomatic office of the British Government established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. Agent at Shargah except inforrJiaily and on purely routine matters.
Cases involving discussion should be referred to this Residency A diplomatic office of the British Government established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. .
^ . dn * wn to tlle fact that a sla ve does not properly speaking
become a British subject or protege merely by reason of his having been freed
aothLfrorfthan IT ' 'f T\. ^ Britisb Manumission Certificate is
g moie than it purports to be, as now worded, and the bearer of one is
About this item
The volume comprises two printed documents. The first is guidelines for the manumission of slaves, printed by the British Government’s Foreign Office Press, and issued to 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. at Bushire. Part one of the guidelines is for the Persian shore 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. . It outlines the authorities (treaties) for manumission, grounds for manumission, and the procedures for manumission. The second part of the guidelines deals with the Arabian shore 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. . Bahrain, Muscat and the Trucial Coast The historic term used by the British to refer to the Gulf coast of Trucial Oman, now called United Arab Emirates. are dealt with separately.
The second printed document in the file is a set of guidelines for dealing with the various scenarios in which economic disputes might arise between captains, divers and merchants in the pearling industry in the Gulf. The guidelines are for use by British agents and representatives in Bahrain, Kuwait, Bandar-e Lengeh and the Trucial Coast The historic term used by the British to refer to the Gulf coast of Trucial Oman, now called United Arab Emirates. . The emphasis in the rules is on the honouring of debts as a means to ensuring the financial stability of the pearling industry, and sets out the obligations of divers to their captains, duties of captains to their divers, captains to other captains regarding loans, and captains to their debtors.
- Extent and format
- 1 volume (21 folios)
Two separate printed reports with their own pagination systems, bound together into one file. No chronology.
- Physical characteristics
Foliation: The volume is foliated in the top-right corner of each recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. . The two printed reports that comprise the volume each have their own internal pagination systems.
- Written in
- English in Latin script View the complete information for this record
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- front, back, spine, edge, head, tail, front-i, 1ar:1av, 2r:21v, back-i
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