Wednesday 14 September 1836

[, on board the wrote. | Read source notes.]

Wednesday Sept. 14. Today it was ordered by the Governor that
the Emigrants should be instructed in the manual exercise.
In order that no objection should be made, the Gentlemen
passengers were first asked to drill, and they agreed to
do so with great good nature. The Emigrants were then
paraded and went through their exercise very respectably
for a first attempt. They are to be drilled regularly by
the corporal of Marines until they are perfectly au fait.
That an armed body should exist for the enforcement of
the laws in the event of popular or individual resist-
-ance may perhaps be necessary, but the idea which
appears to exist in some quarters, that they are required
as a means of defence or aggression against the natives
cannot be too soon repudiated. A hostile shot shall never
be fired against them if I can help it either by pen
or print; the proper force after all, would be a small
body of regular soldiers say 25 or 30, to be paid by the
Colony, and liable to do the requisite duty. If these
men were carefully selected from among the artisans
and mechanics most in demand, such as shoe makers,
carpenters, & other handicrafts, they could be employed
when not wanted, in industrial service, that is let
Government engage them at so much per diem and
hire them out at a fair rate when no military duty is
required from them to such settlers as may have occasion
for their services. In this way an efficient body of troops
could be maintained, not merely almost without expense,
but greatly to the benefit of the Colony. Mr Fisher to whom
I have mentioned the subject thinks with me. It would be
necessary however for the Government & Commissioners
at home to send out especial orders to that effect.

Share this page:

Comments or Questions:

No comments yet.