Monday, May 25, 2015

The Ordeal of Free Labor in the British West Indies

Sewell, William G., The ordeal of free labor in the British West Indies, New York: Harper and Bros., 1861.

Available online HERE (1861), and HERE (1862).

See also The New York Times.

Reviewed by Gordon K. Lewis for Caribbean Studies © 1970.

From the Preface:
Letters on Free Labor in the British West Indies, originally written for the New York Times, and, since their publication in that journal, revised and enlarged, make up the volume now offered to the public. It is not designed, in this work to draw from the results of British Emancipation any inference or to point any conclusion favorable or unfavorable to slave labor in the United States; and for the reason that a great territorial disparity on the one hand, and the southern section of the Union on the other, forbids even a comparison of their social and political institutions. The writer’s aim has been to give, as free from comment as possible, such statistical and other information concerning the West Indian populations, their habits and customs, their industry, their commerce, and their government, as he has been able to procure from reliable sources, or to gain by personal observation.

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