How successful were immigration schemes in the British, French and Spanish territories?
After the emancipation of the slaves, it was very difficult for planters to obtain a successful labor force. There were not enough people to work on the plantations and also planters found it difficult to control their remaining labor. As a result planters were at a loss. Immigration was introduced in the hope of fixing the labor problems of the planters. Although some colonies flourished, others failed horribly. There were three main territories in that era. The British territory used many schemes. They used the European, Portuguese, African, Chinese and Indian schemes. First was the European scheme. European labor was imported chiefly by the British colony Jamaica in order to increase its white population as well as providing plantation labor at the same time. Robert Greenwood and Shirley Hamber state that “between 1834 and 1838, thousands of Scots, Irish and a few hundred Germans came to Jamaica.” However that scheme failed tremendously as most Europeans died because the lacked immunity to tropical diseases and others refused to work when they saw what they had to do and understood that it was the work of blacks. Even so, the Jamaican government tried this scheme again in 1841, importing more whites from Britain. Yet again, the scheme failed as most Europeans died n others asked to be repatriated. Finally the governments were convinced that labor from northern Europe was a hopeless prospect. Secondly, the British territory used the Madeiran scheme. It began in Madeira which is a Portuguese island in the Atlantic off the coast of morocco. Greenwood and Hamber state “that these laborers were paid 3 to 4 pence a day and were attracted to higher wages and prospects in the West Indies.” The importations of the Mandeiran people began in 1835, but were suspended in 1839 because the British government was examining the conduct and morality of the schemes. The scheme began again...
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