« PreviousContinue »
wato. . . . Khama, in manner and appearance, is thoroughly
HOW HE HELPED IN MASHONALAND. a gentleman, dignified and courteous; he wears well-made European clothes, a billy-cock hat and gloves, in his hand he
Khama proved an invaluable ally when the first brandishes a dainty cane, and he pervades everything in his
his advance was made into Mashonaland. Mr. Selous says:country, riding about from point to point wherever his presence It is my belief that, had not Khama come to our assistance, is required ; and if he is just a little too much of a dandy it is not a coloured boy would have crossed the Tuli, and the an error in his peculiar case in the right direction.
expedition in that case would have been most lamentably They all say the same thing. The wife of the Bishop crippled. I have never yet seen Khama's aid acknowledged of Mashonaland says of Khama :
or even referred to, and I therefore take this opportunity of
stating that, in my opinion, he, by his hearty co-operation in He is a radical reformer, who yet develops both himself and
every way, and whenever called upon with the leaders of the his people on the natural lines of the race; he has made him
expedition to Mashonaland, not only rendered inestimable self into a character that can be spoken of as a “perfect
services to the British South Africa Company, but earned the English gentleman," but without losing for a moment his self
gratitude of all Englishmen who are interested in British respect ag an African; he has kept his position as a disciple,
expansion in South Africa. not a mimic, of white civilisation, and he has shown how such an man can raise a pation. He has done it all, as he would tell
The two hundred “boys” whom Khama sent to us, because he is a Christian convert.
assist the pioneer expedition, under the command of Mr. H. C. Selous, the Nimrod of Africa, declares
his brother, Radi-Kladi, were employed by Mr. Selous in • Khama to be a strictly upright and honourable man.
a variety of capacities, and it was largely their help that The Rev. George Cousins says :
enabled the pioneer column to make its rapid march
from the Tuli through the belt of bush country to Undoubtrdly this chief stands out conspicuously among
the Mashonaland platean, where Lobengula recognised South African princes as the finest, noblest of them all. He rules with a firm hand, is soldierly in bearing, a keen sports
that it would be folly for him to attempt an attack, man, a good rider, every inch a man; but combined with this
A FAITHFUL ALLY AGAINST LOBENGULA. strength there is remarkable patience, gentleness, and kindli
When the time had fully come for the extinction of ness of disposition, and none who know him doubt his sincerity.
the murderous slaughter-machine which Lobengula or earnestness as a Christian. The remarkable way in which by the force of his own example and conduct he has led his
directed from Buluwayo, Khama sent a mounted force people forward in the pathway of enlightened Christian progress
to co-operate with the British expedition. After helping furnishes striking evidence of this.
to win the first victories, Khama suddenly recalled his
men. Hence, when Mr. Rhodes visited Palapye in the WHAT MRS. HEPBURN SAYS.
first flush of victory, he bitterly reproached Khama and The best and most recent testimony to his character is
his fighting indunas for deserting Major Goold-Adams. to be found in Mrs. Hepburn's tribute to her friend in
Khama, when subsequently questioned on the subject by the few pages she has added to the letters of her husband
an interviewer, replied :in “ Twenty Years in Kbama's Country.” She says:
“No, I do not want to speak about that, because, since then, I know no other interior chief who has even attempted the
Mr. Rhodes has asked me to forgive him for words which he half that Khama has accomplished in the advancing of his
said when he was misinformed, and I cannot go back on what people towards the goal of civilisation. He has not only
I have already forgotten.” stopped the introduction of brandy into his country, but ho
Mr. Chamberlain, who never forgives and never forgets, has stopped his people from making their own native beer. He has not only put an end to rain-making, and introduced
might with advantage take a lesson from his dusky Christian services in its place, but he has put his foot down
visitor--the first reigning chief, I believe, whom he has tirmly upon their time-honoured ceremony of circumcision. received at the Colonial Office. He has not only made a law against the purchase of slaves
HIS DIFFERENCE WITH MR. RHODES. (Masarwa or Bushmen), and declared himself the Bushman's friend, but he has abolished bagadi, or the purchase of wives
The story about the disagreement is very simple. The by cattle, and introduced the law of marriage from free
first Matabele war was a joint stock affair, wnged, in part, choice, at an age when young men and young women are by the Imperial troops under Major Goold-Adams, and capable of forming such an attachment intelligently. Out of in part by the troops of the Chartered Company, recruited the ruins of anarchy. lawlessness, and general disorder he chiefly from old frontiersmen used to bush fighting and has been building up law, order, and stability. His people inured to the wiles of the Matabele. Khama was asked are living in peace, his fields are laden with corn, the white to send his fighting men to the northern frontier of his man's home is as sacred as in his own country, and a purer
territory to support the advance of the Goold-Adams morality is growing up from day to day.
column. This was all that he was askerl to do, and this It is now nearly a quarter of a century since Khama nnd
was all he undertook to do. When he reached the I became friends. We were with him my husband and I
rendezvous, Major Goold-Adams insisted upon his accom-through these long years, in sorrow and joy; through times of famine and of plenty; through the miseries of war, and
panying his troops in the invasion of Matabeleland. in the quietude of peace and prosperity. We have tasted Khama consented, and his tribesmen rendered yeoman's persecution together; and together have been permitted to see
service in all the operations of the Goold-Adams column the desert rejoicing and blossoming as the rose, under the good until the so-called first Matabele war ended. His scouts hand of our God upon us. But more than this; for months at were twenty-four hours in advance of the Imperial scouts. a time, while my husband was visiting the Lake Ngami They sent him word that all fighting was over, that people, have I been left with my children, under Khama's sole the Matabele had fled northward, and that Dr. Jamieson protection and guardianship; and no brother could have cared and his men were advancing on Buluwayo. This being for us more thoughtfully and kindly. During these absences of
the case, Khama said the war was over. He was wanted his missionary I have often had to assist the chief, interpreting
at home, and so were his men. Besides, there were and corresponding for him, etc., and advising him in any difficulties which might arise. And in all our intercourse I can
other reasons, of a domestic or tribal nature, which most gratefully say that he was to me always a true Christian
Christian · demanded his return, and as the war was over, he was gentleman in word and deed. No one now living knows going back. Major Goold-Adams objected to this deser* Khama the Good” as I know him. Did they do so they tion. He said he had no information justifying the could but honour and trust him as I do from my heart.
statement made by Khama. “I cannot help it if your. men are slow,” said Khama. “I know it is true. I believe is frequently put about his preaching to his tribe on my men, as you believe yours. I am going home," and Sundays. Khama is not a preacher. Sometimes he is, home he went, much to the indignation of Major called upon, like any other man of his tribe, to testify in Goold-Adams, an indignation which lasted just twenty- the prayer-meeting, but he is not a fluent speaker, and a four hours, for at the close of that time the Imperial sermon he has never made in his life. It has fallen to scouts brought in confirmation of Khaina's news. his lot to make announcements, explaining certain The report of Khama's “ desertion” had, however, got positions he has taken, and to set forth the reasons for twenty-four hours' start, and as the truth is proverbially his steps, but beyond this he has never gone. As a much slower than falsehood, the contradiction did not hunter he is—or was, in his younger days-above the overtake the original story for many days. Mr. Rhodes average of his tribe, and as a statesman he is honest, was under a falso impression when he reached Palapye, straightforward and courageous.” and being a man who speaks his mind when his indigna
HIS GOOD-HEARTEDNESS. tion is hot within him, he “ gave it to Khama” pretty
Khama is a good-hearted man, with a great sense of hotly when he spoke in the khotla of his capital on his
his personal obligations to individuals. return from the seat of war. As a result the great white
is developed to such an extent as to blind him to his man and the great black man were for a few months on terms which were the reverso of friendly. After a time,
paramount obligation to his people. “Why did he
not kill Sekhome?” said I, in a long and interesting however, Dr. Jamieson came to Palapye with a message from Mr. Rhodes. The great white man assured the
conversation which I had with Mr. Willoughby at
Armfield's Hotel. “It always seemed to me that it was great black man that the censure spoken in the khotla was due to a misapprehension. His words were due to a
one of the greatest blunders of his career.” lack of knowledge of the facts — facts which were at the
“Because," said Mr. Willoughby, “Sekhome was his time known to neither Dr. Jamieson nor Mr. Rhodes.
father and Khamani was his brother. Both of their
lives were forfeited over and over again. According to Khama, who is a magnanimous nature, accepted the
native laws or according to rules which prevail in more explanation with quiet dignity. “If the words were so
civilised communities, Sekhome ought to have been spoken," he said, " it is enough; I have already for
executed. The tribe expected it. Had Sekhome succeeded, gotten them.”
he would certainly have executed Khama; but to all IV.-KHAMA'S MISSION.
representations as to the obvious political necessity of Armfield's Hotel, South Place, Finsbury, the head- executing the old chief Khama replied by simply stating, quarters of Khama during his sojourn in London, stands “Sekhome is my father.'”. almost immediately' opposite the famous chapel where
“Therefore," I said, " the filial obligations of Khama first Mr. W. J. Fox and then Mr. Moucure D. Conway overrode the much more serious obligations which he endeavoured to popularise a religion of humanity in owed to the tribe of Bamangwato?" which equal honour was paid to all theologies and all the
“But,” said Mr. Willoughby; “Khama could not see founders of all the creeds not only of Christendom but it in that light. Nothing could induce him to execute of the world.
his father." Khama, whom I had the privilege of meeting at Nor, indeed, will he deal out justice to his brother. · Armfield's, in personal appearance is dignified, although Only the other day lie gave Khamani one of the best not imposing. His figure is tall and slightly aslant,
patches of land in the whole country. Khamani, who reminding one at first of Abraham Lincoln; but the had been a rebel, and who had sought his brother's life, resemblance does not extend to the features. His came in professing penitence and begging forgiveness. countenance is anything but what we associate with the
Khama withheld his reply for some time, and then settled word African. The skin, of course, is dark, but there is
him on this fertile tract. “Do you think it was wise," neither the flattened nose nor the broad lips nor the
Khama was asked, “ froin the point of view of the tribe ?” bloodshot eyes, which are often the distinctive character “I don't know," said Khama; “I haye thought of that, istics of the South African. His hair is very scant and
but Khamani is my brother. He is drinking himself to gray and grizzled. His personal address is pleasing, death, and I must do for him whatever I can." without being effusive, but his knowledge of English
This amiable feature in Khama s character may yet being limited to a very few words, it is difficult for cost the tribe dear. He may, however, declare that any one to form any clear idea of his manners and mode policy should be judged by its fruits, and on the whole of speech, unless he had previously acquired a knowledge he has not come off badly, notwithstanding his subof Khama's tongue.
ordination of political exigencies to family affection. KHAMA'S STRENGTH.
WHAT KHAMA WANTS. Perhaps the most notable feature of Khama is the. It is not as yet officially stated what it is that Khama extent to which he succeeds in impressing those who has come to this country to seek. Unofficially and visit him with his superiority. One who knew him well informally, it is understood that Khama desires to save states that "the odd thing about Khama is that all who his country from being placed under the government of the meet him seem to find that he excels in whatever British South African Chartered Company. Khama offered department they are interested in. The hunter finds his country outright to Sir Charles Warren, in the hope that Khama is the greatest of all sportsmen, a veritable that it might be governed by representatives of the Nimrod. The missionary declares that he is one of the Colonial Office. This was rejected; and afterwards an holiest of saints. The politician finds him a statesman entirely different arrangement, which he did not approve of the first rank, etc. In reality, Khama is none of of, but which he acquiesced in, was made as a temporary these things. He is a thoroughly good man, honest and settlement of the question. By this arrangement, painstaking, self-possessed and resolute. These qualities Bechuanaland became a British Protectorate, the southern are so rarely to be found in native chiefs that it is not half of it being more directly controlled by the British very surprising that the man should have become a Administrator than the northern part. Now, howsemi-legendary figure. For instance, take the story that ever, Mr. Rhodes proposes to annex South Bechuapa
land to the Cape Colony, and to hand over the northern part of the Protectorate, including Khama's country, to the Chartered Company, which for practical purposes means three men : Mr. Rhodes, of Cape Town, Dr. Jamieson of Matabeleland, and Mr. Colenbrander, administrator of native affairs. Khama and his tribe do not wish to be transferred from the Imperial administration to the direct rule of the Chartered Company.
ONLY THE STATUS QUO. There is no personal quarrel between Khama and Mr. Rhodes, but the administration of the Chartered Company in Matabeleland has been too recently established, and is yet too much tainted with the corollaries of the war, to commend itself to the Bamangwato. Besides, natives are naturally conservative. Even Khama, who may be regarded as their most progressive chief, objects to radical reform in certain directions, and he shrinks from annexation. He has become accustomed to the present system. He does not ask for anything except that he should be let alone, and that Dr. Jamieson and Mr. Colenbrander should have a longer time to prove their capacity to manage native tribes before they are allowed to interfere with the Bamangwato. Dr. Jamieson may be one of the best of men, as he is certainly one of the ablest but his worst enemy will admit that he is not the type of man to commend himself to a chief like Khama, who is the bright and shining convert of the London Missionary Society. Mr. Colenbrander appears to be a gentleman whose ideas of natives are, to put it mildly not founded on the Golden Rule so much invoked at Exeter Hall. The natives, in the eyes of Mr. Colenbrander's school, are not spoken of as men and brothers, but rather as matter in the wrong place, which it is devoutly hoped a beneficent Providence will cause to disappear. To put it plainly, Khama has no objection to Mr. Rhodes. "He does distrust Dr. Jamieson and Mr. Colenbrander. Nor can any one look at facts even from this distance and doubt that he has a primâ facie case for objecting to hand over his tribe to these gentlemen, who have at present their hands full, and of whose adminis. tration in Matabeleland the refugees at Palapye do not speak too favourably. It will be interesting to see how Mr. Chamberlain deals with the question of Khama. At
A the interview with Khama the Colonial Secretary listened
onöd attentively, and showed a desire to grasp the chief points in the case, but refrained from expressing any opinion on the subject. '
“WHY CANNOT YOU LET IT ALONE?" No doubt 'Mr. Rhodes has powerful reasons, financial and political, for desiring to carry out his project. But considering all things, especially considering that the British public has its qualms of conscience, and would like dearly to put some salve upon the sore place by saving Kbama from what he evidently dreads, it seems to me he would do well to remember the old adage, Safely but slow, they stumble who run fast. There is no hurry about the matter. Dr. Jamieson has his hands full at present. Khama has got on very well these last five years with his own people, and there is no visible reason why the status quo should not be prolonged for five more years. In the year 1900, if Dr. Jamieson has settled and governed Matabeleland to the satisfaction of every one concerned, the time will be ripe for taking over Khama's country. But meantime it would be a somewhat perilous step that would certainly provoke feelings of hostility at home which, of course, Mr. Rhodes could defy if he pleased, but which a prudent
Minister wonld avert if he could. A cynical bystander, looking at the position, would be disposed to say to the Dictator of South Africa, “You can do what you like with John Bull so long as you refrain from trampling on his corns. This black chief, Khama, is no doubt a very small corn on John Bull's little toe, but if you tread on it the consequences will not be small. Leave it alone. Dodge the corn if you want to get the shekels." I have no doubt the cyuic would be right.
REASONS FOR PAUSE. Khama represents many things which from old time have been very dear to the British public. Ho is a standing illustration-probably the best than can be produced-of the capacity of a native, chief to acquire Christianity and civilisation through missionary agency. Khama is much more in sympathy with Exeter Hall than is Mr. Rhodes. Khama possesses, indeed, almost every qualification to become an ideal legendary hero of the Missionary Society. I do not say that Mr. Rhodes and Dr. Jamieson do any such thing, but the gang of gambling speculators amidst whom they live and move and have their being, sneer at Exeter Hall and the missionary sentiment. Yet if it had not been for Exeter Hall and the work of the missionaries in Sonth Africa, there would have been no South African Company and no northern extension, no, not for many a year yet. The missionaries have laboured, and Mr. Rhodes, and the goll boomers have entered into their labours. A gieat many of our people have regarded this development with profound distrust and misgiving. This sentiment of distrust has just found vigorous expression in (live Schreiner's manifesto—a trumpet blast which finds a widespread echo at home, outside the Kaffir Circus. Mr. Rhodes would hardly be acting with his usual' wisdom if this floating dissatisfaction with what may be regarded as the stock-jobber's régime in South Africa were completely disregarded and Khama were thrust against his will. Khama will not fight, no matter what happens, and even if he did, he could be wiped out without difficulty. But Khama can appeal to a sentiment which, however much the new nabobs a of De Beers and the Randt may despise it, is of occasionally capable of blazing up and paralysing occasionally capabl everyming. everything. The Achilles' heel of our South African
T empire is its financial basis. Even Mr. Rhodes warmest supporters feel that there is too much cause given to those that maintain that, never since the world . began, bas there been a successful edifice of dominion which bore from its turret to its foundation stone the impress of Mammon. It is in South Africa as it was in Pandemonium
Mammon led them on,
In vision beatific. That is not Mr. Rhodes's fault. It is his misfortune. He has worked with such tools as be found ready to his hand. No man despises money more as an end in itself, no one uses it more constantly as a means to his end.
A PARTING WORD. Mr. Rhodes is a statesman who has felt himself compelled to materialise his great ideals of empire by the ait of men whose only thought is of dollars and cents. He has constantly, sorely against his better nature, to play to as mean and money-grubbing a gallery as there exists in the world. At this moment most of the men who back him, do so believing in their heart of hearts that he has no greater object than to drive Charters up to 10, and who for their sake, so long as that be attained, are quite ready to drive Khama and all his tribe to the devil.
But Mr. Rbodes knows that it is not the crowd who shout in the Kaffir Circus, nor the likes of them, who in the long run rule the affairs of the world. And however much he may regret what he will no doubt regard as the
unreasonable interference of the public at home in the execution of plans which they do not understand, he had better let Khama alone for a season. Khama is the one man in the whole of Africa whose case commands the sympathy of a large section of the British public; his claim is moderate, founded on justice and right. And if there be a God who rules among the affairs of men, it does not seem probable that He wishes Mr. Rhodes to sacrifice Khama to the exigencies of political or financial adventure.
mines, he warns the investor that even if three million ounces are produced next year the total profit would not pay more than 2 per cent, on the present quoted value of the shares in the market. For some time past all the interests have been combined to force up the prices, but sooner or later it will come to be the interest of some of the speculators to play for a fall. Then he fears the market will break. His final warning is as follows:
These South African shares are largely artificial; though no doubt some shares are quoted at prices which represent their actual and intrinsic worth, the rise has gone 80 dangerously far now that even the augmented output of next year must fail to offer an adequate interest upon the capital invested. Further, I wish to emphasise the fact that the danger of collapse is especially great in this market, where strained conditions prevail, and where control rules, irresponsible, inscrutable, and all-powerful. Predictions are dangerous, and gloomy forecasts unpleasant to make. But unless this mad “boom" is checked, if it is still possible to check it, there will come a day of denouement which must lead to a collapse so huge that the entire business world will feel
THE SOUTH AFRICAN GOLD BOOM. MR. S. F. Van Oss, who has been out to South Africa, contributes two articles on the results of his investigations, one to the Nineteenth century, and 4he other to the Investors' Review. His paper, which is entitled “The Gold Mining Madness in the City," has the first place in the Nineteenth century. But, although he thinks it is madness, he admits that there is method in it. Mr. Van Oss puts into a brief compass the salient facts which will enable the general public to understand the cause for this extraordinary boom. In the Randt in the Transvaal there are fifty miles of gold reef of extraordinary richness :
Dr. Schmeisser and Mr. Hamilton Smith concur in estimating the value of the gold in this district, down to a depth of about 1,200 feet, at somewhere between £300,000,000 and £350,000,000.
Besides this enormous mass of gold, which is regarded as almost within sight, there may be thousands of miles more which have not yet been prospected. Enough, however, is in sight to have called into existence an extraordinary industry. The traveller when approaching to the gold mining region is astonished at the developments of the gold mining works :
The works, which now directly employ 50,000 native miners and 8.00) Europeans, crush with their 2,700 stamps enough rock to produce over 200,000 ounces of gold a month; and the output of ore is so regular and reliable that there is literally no possibility of disappointment.
The regularity of the gold deposit in the Randt district differentiates it from all other gold-mining localities :
A ton of ore yields on the average £2 6s. 6d. in gold, to extract which costs only £1 103. 60. Hence over one-third of the gold produced is profit.
The improved methods of extracting the gold have made many of the mines profitable which could not otherwise have been worked :
In the early days no more than 50 per cent. of the gold in the ore could be extracted; at present, with the aid of cyanide of potassium, between 80 and 85 per cent, is gained, and the proportion can before long be increased by another 10 per cent. Coupled with the effects of railway construction this improvement has had remarkable results. In the early days of the industry it did not pay to work ore with less than four ounces of gold to the ton; now five penny-weights suffice in many cases.
These are the facts which underlie the enormous boom which has taken place in all South African shares. Mr. Van Oss, describing the wild gamble which has gone on in mining shares, says:
Within little more than half a year a condition of timid enterprise has gradually degenerated into a craze for reckless speculation ; a huge advance in values has taken place; the aggregate quotation of Witwatersrand shares alone has risen from £30,000,000 last autumn to some £150,000,000 now. A whole mushroom press has sprung up in the City, largely called forth by the fostering sun of company advertising on an unstinted scale; perhaps £25,000 a week is now spent on bringing new mining ventures to the notice of the public. The Stock Exchange is so active that “after hours" huge concourses of people have often obstructed traffic in Throg. morton Street to an extent which necessitated police interven tion; the three fortnightly settlement days had to be augmented by one, because it was impossible to crowd all the work within the customary time; many firms of stockbrokers have been forced to double their staff, and to keep their offices open night and day at times.
While admitting that there is good justification for investment in the well known but pitifully managed
The article in the Investors' Review on “Gold in South Africa ” is interesting, lucid, and apparently very carefully written, Mr. Van Oss has studied the country carefully on the spot, and, as might be expected from the fact that he is allowed to write in the Investors' Revier', his judgment is anything but optimistic. I say nothing as to his estimate of the mineral wealth of the country; but I must quote his general conclusion, which is that, whether English, Boer, or Portuguese, all the Governments in South Africa appear to be rotten to the core. He says:
What has struck me most in South Africa, and hurt most as a journalist, is the widespread, or rather common corruption of the Press, especially in the Transvaal. All papers in that country, except, as far as I know, two, are paid by and subscrvient to some clique or other, be it the Rhodes' interest, or Kruger's, or Robinsons', or Ecksteins’; the two are the Johannesburg Critic, which has just started an offshoot in London, and the Transvaal Advertiser of Pretoria. In the Free State and the Cape and Natal it is much the same, and throughout South Africa newspapers are, like railways, the weapons in a gigantic struggle, full of cunning and intrigue. The next thing which deserves attention is the widespread corruption of the Boer Government. It has created a ruinous series of monopolies, ranging from spirits to dynamite, and a disgusting trafisking is continually going on for the Government's favours. Next come the rotten principles of Cape internal politics. These, I am glad to see, have just been taken in hand by Mrs. Olive Schreiner.
The autumn number of the Cheltenham Ladies' College Magazine publishes a brief autobiographical sketch of Marshal MacDermott of Adelaide.
The Italian translation of " If Christ Came to Chicago," which has just been completed by Agostino della Corte, will be published shortly. The first edition will consist of 2,000 copies. It is curious that the translator thinks the last chapter—which, as he says, is entirely religioushad better be left out in the translation for fear of bringing down upon the book the anathemas of the Roman authorities. At the same time from America I have received urgent representations pleading for the omission of the references to the Roman Catholic Church and the A.P.A. Association in other parts of the book; because, it is alleged, they are much too favourable to the Roman Church.