February 7, 2015
The Caribbean region in the late eighteenth century was exploited in many ways: plantations altering any financial potential and cruel oppressors exploiting natives and slaves to keep the “Old World” linked to the “New World.” Full of pirates, slave rebellions, and involved in multiple wars including the Nine Years’ War and the Seven Years’ War. They were home to many plays for profit, the easiest of which was smuggling. The causes and responses to smuggling were all around the same, all that matters was whom the smugglers were working for, and whose funds were being subverted by said smuggling. Smuggling was a better alternative to legally exporting or obtaining goods for profit. William Taggart (doc 1) shows how much a profit smuggling can make for the Spanish. Without having to pay either a tax or the shipping cost they are weaseling the English out of every penny they have. Richard Tyrell (doc 2) demonstrates this with the French. By smuggling in their goods they avoid any taxation and outsell the English easily. Rather than expend more money and make a miniscule profit, they smuggle their product and escape taxation, resulting in a remarkably lower price and thusly a greatly increased profit. And it doesn’t even have to be a product, it can be a person. Bartholomew Redmon (doc 7) stole slaves instead of having them brought over an entire ocean, selling them at what seems an insanely cheap price. Instead of using an excess of manpower, time, and money, he nicked them from preexisting colonies in the Caribbean and resold them.
An additional document that would assist in my analysis would be an account from one of the smugglers themselves. We’ve heard from those selling the goods and those being undermined, but never from those who put the effort in to get those goods through. Was the pay worth the effort? Or was it a duty to be performed to aid their empire?
The British did not approve of...
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