'File A/5 Pearl fisheries of Persian Gulf' [8r] (15/62)
The record is made up of 1 file (31 folios). It was created in 10 Mar 1904-19 Jun 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.
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The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors.
31st March 1905.
To His Excellency the Right Honourable the Governor
General of India in Council.
On receipt of your Excellency's letter No. 63 of the lOth March
-r, , . . . T ^ . 1904, on the question of the pearl
Fearl Jishertes in the Persian n , . - A -r^ • ^ T
Q u lf n nshenes in 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. , I
entered into communication with
the Foreign Office with a view to obtaining the opinion of the Law
Officers of the Crown upon the legal and international points raised by
your Excellency's Government.
2. I euclose herewith, for the information and guidance of the
* To Foreign Office, dated 30th June
1904, and enclosure.
From ditto, dated 16th July 1904.
To ditto, dated 10th August 1904, and
From ditto, dated 27th October 1904, and
From ditto, dated 25th February 1905, and
To ditto, dated 8th March 1905.
From ditto, dated 20th March 1905.
Government of India, a copy of
3. Your Excellency will see that
the Law Officers of the Crown
have no doubt as to the rights of
the tribes in such waters as may
justly be considered territorial.
Outside territorial waters, they are inclined to hold that the exclusive
rights of the tribes might be maintained to banks in regard to which
their exclusive possession is capable of historical proof; but they
consider that the point is not free from doubt. In regard to the deeper
waters, they are of opinion that there would be no reasonable chance of
asserting with success the right of the tribes to debar other nations
4. In these circumstances, I agree with the general conclusion at
which the Law Officers of the Crown have arrived, viz., that it is not
expedient to raise the question internationally by forcibly preventing
vessels of foreign nationalities from fishing on the banks. The object
in view may probably be attainable by indirect methods.
I have the honour to be,
/ My Lord,
Your Lordship's most obedient humble Servant,
(Signed) St. John Brodrick.
About this item
The contents of the file relate to the British Government’s concerns over growing British and international interest in the Gulf’s pearling industry, hitherto almost exclusively exploited by the region’s indigenous inhabitants.
1) The first half of the file (folios 2-13) comprises copies of Government of India correspondence published in 1904 and 1905, which discuss Britain’s historic role in the Gulf in relation to the pearling industry. Themes covered include: Britain’s duty to protect the pearl banks for the benefit of the Arab pearl divers, acknowledgement of growing national and international interest in the pearl banks, the extent of territorial waters, and the likely result of any legal challenges to Britain’s refusal to allow foreign interests the opportunity to exploit the Gulf’s pearl banks.
2) Correspondence relating to an enquiry by a German businessman, concerning the pearl trade in the Gulf (folios 15-17).
3) Printed copies of correspondence (folios 20-23) from 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. 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. (Lieutenant-Colonel Percy Cox) and 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. (Captain Charles Mackenzie), dated 1910, concerning the increasing trade in oyster shells in the Gulf, used for the production of mother of pearl. A drop in the numbers of oysters being fished is attributed to the mother of pearl industry. A German firm based in Bahrain, Wonckhaus & Co., is identified as a key exporter of oyster shells at Bahrain.
4) A letter (folio 27) intercepted by the Political Agency An office of the British Government and, earlier, of the East India Company. in Bahrain, from the Secretary of the Wolverine Motor Works, U.S.A., to Robert Wonckhaus & Co., dated 3 February 1915. The letter and accompanying leaflet (folios 28-29) relates to Wolverine Motor Works’ new combined compressor and propelling motor, designed specifically for use in the pearl fishing industry.
5) A typewritten extract from the Times of India Illustrated , dated 19 [month missing, presumed June] 1918 (folio 30) reporting on rumours that German financiers are buying up all the pearls available in Britain and France.
- Extent and format
- 1 file (31 folios)
The contents of the file have been arranged in approximate chronological order, running from the earliest items at the front of the file to the latest at the end.
- Physical characteristics
Foliation: The file is foliated from its front cover to inside back cover, using circled pencil numbers in the top-right corner of each recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. . There is an additional pagination system running throughout the file.
Folio 29 is a fold-out.
There is minor insect damage to papers throughout the file.
- Written in
- English in Latin script View the complete information for this record
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- 'File A/5 Pearl fisheries of Persian Gulf'
- front, front-i, 2r:14v, 16v:26v, 27v, 30r:30v, back-i, back
- East India Company, the Board of Control, the India Office, or other British Government Department
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