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CHAPTER IV.

INFLUENCE OF CANADIANS OX SLAVERY ELSEWHERE.

Although slavery had for a quarter of a century been actually abolished throughout the Maritime Provinces, the steadily advancing movement which culminated in the Imperial Act of 1833 was watched by public men, and in particular by the commercial section of more than one community, with great interest.

As has been recently shown in one of a series of interesting historical reminiscences in the Acadian Recorder of this city, the \Vest India islands, the only portion of the empire really affected by that Act, were in close commercial relations with the Maritime Provinces. The fish and lumber sent by these provinces to the West Indies formed an important, if not the larger, part of their export trade—a trade that, directly and indirectly, gave empioyment to an immense number of industrious men. On the success of this trade Halifax had in a large measure depended for her prosperity. if not for her existence; and the agricultural sections of the provinces for their imports and circulating medium. With their interests thus interwoven, the merchants of the Lower Provinces, in spite of their general belief in the right to emancipation of slaves of any color or origin, had not a little sympathy with \Vest India planters and exporters in their alarm at the probable consequences, as seen from a business standpoint, of the success of the English abolitionists. In that alarm the \Vest Indies, about 1824, appealed to the Northern colonies for moral aid in their resistance to the onward march of the already triumphing emancipation crusade in the mother country, by petitions to his majesty's government in their favor. Under these circumstances the


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