Archive for April, 2020

STEALING STUFF – ‘Panama, Peru and the Philipines’

Tuesday, April 7th, 2020

 ‘Since the Age of Elizabeth 1, the British had had global ambitions in which possession of Central America offered the prospect of opening a path between the Atlantic and Pacific’.  Andrew Jackson O’Shaughnessy, The Men Who Lost America, Yale University Press, New Haven, London 2013

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‘From  the first decades of their colonizations, the British had envied the Spanish the riches of bullion and production they obtained from the World. Drake’s and Hawkin’s raids were early and brutal manifestations of envy’. Alan Frost, Arthur Phillip His Voyaging 1738 – 1814, Oxford University Press, Auckland, London, 1987

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[Commodore] George Anson’s voyage of 1740-44 marked a return to the earlier, more immediately effective, approach of decisive plundering; be it too had the broader dimension of subversion and future trade.

As well as with the treasure of the annual Manila galleon, Anson returned with developed ideas of how to open a trade along the Pacific coasts of America and he sought to implement  his scheme when he joined the Board of Admiralty in 1748.

‘From this time until well into the nineteenth century, whenever Britain was at war with Spain, administrations received proposals for expeditions against Spanish America’. Alan Frost, Arthur Phillip His Voyaging, Oxford University Press, 1987 p.106

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[San Juan – 1799] ‘The colours of England, were, in their imagination, already in the wall of Lima’. Roger Knight, The Pursuit of Victory: The Life and Achievement of Horatio Nelson, Westview Press UK

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‘Only 10 of the 200 crew members [survived] from the twenty-eight gun frigate HMS Hinchinbrooke,commanded by [Horatio] Nelson who was himself forced to return [from San Juan] to Jamaica where he was nursed back to life by a slave woman, Cuba Cornwallis’.  O’Shaughnessy op.cit.

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[1783] ‘The place New South Wales holds on our globe might give it a very commanding influence in the policy of Europe. If a colony from Britain was established in large tract of country, and if we were at war with Holland and Spain we might powerfully annoy either state from our new settlement.

We might with equal facility invade the coast of Spanish America, and intercept the Manilla ships [galleons] laden with the treasures of the west….Sir Joseph Bank’s highest approbation of the scheme which I have proposed deserves the most respectful attention’. James Maria Matra,  Plan for Botany Bay, 23 August 1783,  Frank Murcott, Bladen, Historical Records of New South Wales 1892, Nabu Public Domain Reprint

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A ‘NASTY WAR’ & A WALL OF SILENCE

Friday, April 3rd, 2020

‘Once more the discoveries of Captain Cook were influencing the direction of Britain’s overseas expansion…During the period 1763 and 1793 the character of the Second British Empire was being formed…the empire of commerce in the Indian and Pacific Oceans’.  Vincent T. Harlow, Founding of the Second British Empire 1763-1793, Vol. II, 1964.

DEFENSIVE – RETENTION

‘New Holland is a good blind, then, when we want to add to the military strength of India…I need not enlarge on the benefit of stationing a large body of troops in New South Wales. They may be transported thither before our enemies in Europe knew anything of the matter’. “W. Raleigh”. Dispatch to Under Secretary Evan Nepean, 1789.Frank Murcott Bladen, Historical Records of New South Wales

OFFENSIVE – EXPANSION

‘The place New South Wales holds on our globe might give it a very commanding influence in the polity of Europe…we might….invade the coast of Spanish America, and intercept the Manilla ships, laden with the treasure of the west’. James Matra [Joseph Banks] Plan for Botany Bay, August 23, 1783. Bladen. Ibid.

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‘After an absence of 219 days [2 October 1788 to 8 May 1789] 51 of which lay in Table Bay Cape of Good Hope, so that, although during the[Sirius] voyage we had fairly gone around the world, we had only been 168 days in describing that circle…makes it [Port Jackson] an important Post, should it ever be necessary to carry…war in those seas…[Pacific] Coast of Chile and Peru’.  John Hunter, Historical Journal of the Transactions at Port Jackson and Norfolk Island, 1793, 2008 ed.

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‘The troops sent to garrison the Australian colonies participated in the great struggle at the heart of the European conquest of this continent’. Dr. Peter Stanley, The Remote Garrison The British Army in Australia 1788-1870, Kangaroo Press, Sydney 1986

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‘Military and police raids against dissenting Aboriginal groups…had commenced by  December 1790. Professor Bruce Kercher, An Unruly Child,  A History of Law in Australia, Allen & Unwin 1995

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Within a matter of years  [1790] violence had broken out on both sides and Phillip would instruct raiding parties to bring back the severed heads of the local warriors’. Stan Grant, Talking To My Country, Harper Collins, Australia, 2017

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Bring in six [6] of those natives who reside near the head of Botany Bay; or if that should be found impracticable, to put that number [6] to death…bring back the heads of the slain’. Governor Arthur Phillip RN, General Orders to Marine Captain Watkin Tench, 13 December 1790. Ccited  Watkin Tench , Sydney’s First Four Years, L.F. Fitzhardinge, Angus and Robertson, Sydney 1961

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‘Lieutenant William Dawes’ whose tour of duty it was to go out with that [December] party refused that duty by letter’. Professor G.A. Wood, Lieutenant William Dawes and Captain Watkin Tench, Royal Australian Historical Society Journal; Vol. 19, Part 1, 1924

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