horton james : missionary
Horton James : Missionary Prohibitions,
Horton : A Letter on the Sandwich Islands The Literary Gazette and Journal of Belles Lettres... H.
Saturday, September 15, 1832.
Introduction A brief note claiming that the
missionaries have prohibited bathing and the surf-board.
Horton's letter was reprinted in the Catholic
Magazine and Review in 1832, and as the preface to Husenbeth's Defence of the
Catholic Church in 1834,.accredited
Catholic layman of Upper Canada. Page 579
A Letter on the
Importance of settling the Sandwich and Bonin Islands
on the Plan of a Proprietary
Government, &c. By T. Horton
James, Esq., London, 1832.
OF the legality or expediency of Great Britain taking
possession of and colonising the Sandwich and Bonin
Islands we are not competent to judge; but there are many
matters in this small pamphlet of such general interest
that we only do our duty in bringing them under public
Mr. James, it appears, has recently returned home from a
voyage round the world, during which he spent some months
among the Sandwich Islands; and we lament to say that his
account of them is of the most melancholy description.
No wonder the
population is gradually falling off, when, added to
this system of frightening the people, and charging
them a dollar forgetting married, they are compelled
to attend the church and school four days out of
seven, and the fifth day is spent in compulsory labor
for the chiefs ; thus leaving only two whole days for
the purpose of tillage and growing their necessary
The missionaries have prohibited fishing, bathing,
Jews'-harps, and the surf-board, and every other
description of amusement among the native population;
besides which they have introduced an old law of the
Connecticut puritans, and will not allow an
English or American gentleman to ride on horseback on
Sundays, or drink spirituous liquors, or play at bowls or
billiards on any day in the week; whilst they themselves
are driven about the town and about the country,
four-in-hand, with their wives and families, Sundays and
working days, not by horses, which are plentiful and cheap
enough in those islands, but by human beings, by four
naked black fellows, their own hearers, and probably
fellow-communicants! ... In short, civilisation, as it is
unfortunately going on at present in the Sandwich
Islands, under the mismanagement of the American
missionaries, is only another word for extinction.