Blackbirding

blackbirdedblackbirderblackbirdersPeruvian slave tradersslave labourblack-birdedblack-birdersblackbirdblackbird" slave shipsBlackbirding in Australia
Blackbirding involves the coercion of people through deception and/or kidnapping to work as unpaid or poorly paid labourers in countries distant to their native land.wikipedia
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Queensland

Queensland, AustraliaQLDState of Queensland
The demand for this kind of cheap labour principally came from European colonists in New South Wales, Peru, Queensland, Samoa, New Caledonia, Fiji, Tahiti, Hawaii, Mexico and Guatemala. From the late 1860s, the blackbirding trade focused on supplying labourers to plantations, particularly those producing sugar-cane in Queensland and Fiji. The experiment of exploiting Melanesian labour was discontinued in Australia until Robert Towns recommenced the practice in Queensland in the early 1860s.
The state has witnessed frontier warfare between European settlers and Indigenous inhabitants (which did not result in any settlement or treaty), as well as the exploitation of cheap Kanaka labour sourced from the South Pacific through a form of forced recruitment known at the time as "blackbirding".

New Caledonia

New-CaledoniaNouvelle-CalédonieNCL
The demand for this kind of cheap labour principally came from European colonists in New South Wales, Peru, Queensland, Samoa, New Caledonia, Fiji, Tahiti, Hawaii, Mexico and Guatemala.
As trade in sandalwood declined, it was replaced by a new business enterprise, "blackbirding", a euphemism for taking Melanesian or Western Pacific Islanders from New Caledonia, the Loyalty Islands, New Hebrides, New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands into indentured or forced labour in the sugar cane plantations in Fiji and Queensland by various methods of trickery and deception.

Pearling in Western Australia

pearling industrypearlingpearler
Examples of blackbirding outside the South Pacific include the early days of the pearling industry in Western Australia at Nickol Bay and Broome, where Aboriginal Australians were blackbirded from the surrounding areas.
After settlement the Aborigines were used as slave labour in the emerging commercial industry.

Kanaka (Pacific Island worker)

KanakasKanakaSouth Sea Islander labour
These blackbirded people were called Kanakas or South Sea Islanders.
Some were kidnapped ("blackbirded") or otherwise induced into long-term indentured service or unfree labour.

Fiji

Fiji IslandsRepublic of FijiFijian
The demand for this kind of cheap labour principally came from European colonists in New South Wales, Peru, Queensland, Samoa, New Caledonia, Fiji, Tahiti, Hawaii, Mexico and Guatemala. In 1869, The Rosario under Captain George Palmer managed to intercept a blackbirding ship loaded with Islanders at Fiji. From the late 1860s, the blackbirding trade focused on supplying labourers to plantations, particularly those producing sugar-cane in Queensland and Fiji. The blackbirding era began in Fiji on 5 July 1865 when Ben Pease received the first licence to transport 40 labourers from the New Hebrides to Fiji in order to work on cotton plantations.
The blackbirding era began in Fiji in 1865 when the first New Hebridean and Solomon Island labourers were transported there to work on cotton plantations.

Benjamin Boyd

Ben Boyd
A shipload of 65 Melanesian labourers arrived in Boyd Town on 16 April 1847 on board the Velocity, a vessel under the command of Captain Kirsopp and chartered by Benjamin Boyd.
Many of his business ventures involved blackbirding, the practise of coercing and kidnapping South Sea Islanders as slave labourers.

Solomon Islands

SolomonsSolomon IslandSolomon
Some 55,000 to 62,500 were brought to Australia, most being recruited or blackbirded from islands in Melanesia, such as the New Hebrides (now Vanuatu), the Solomon Islands and the islands around New Guinea.
They made little progress at first, because "blackbirding" (the often brutal recruitment or kidnapping of labourers for the sugar plantations in Queensland and Fiji) led to a series of reprisals and massacres.

Vanuatu

Republic of Vanuatuni-VanuatuNew Hebrides
Some 55,000 to 62,500 were brought to Australia, most being recruited or blackbirded from islands in Melanesia, such as the New Hebrides (now Vanuatu), the Solomon Islands and the islands around New Guinea.
During the 1860s, planters in Australia, Fiji, New Caledonia, and the Samoa Islands, in need of labourers, encouraged a long-term indentured labour trade called "blackbirding".

HMS Rosario (1860)

HMS ''RosarioRosarioHMS Rosario
In 1869, The Rosario under Captain George Palmer managed to intercept a blackbirding ship loaded with Islanders at Fiji.
She served two commissions, including eight years on the Australia Station during which she fought to reduce illegal kidnappings of South Sea Islanders for the Queensland labour market.

Sugarcane

sugar canesugarsugar-cane
From the late 1860s, the blackbirding trade focused on supplying labourers to plantations, particularly those producing sugar-cane in Queensland and Fiji.
It is estimated that one-third of these workers were coerced or kidnapped into slavery (known as blackbirding).

Malaita

Malaita IslandMalaytaMalaitan people
Well known vessels that experienced mortality amongst their crews while attempting to recruit Islanders included the Esperanza at Simbo, Pearl at Rendova Island, May Queen at Ambae Island, Stormbird at Tanna, the Janet Stewart at Malaita and the Isabella at Espiritu Santo amongst others.
After it was re-discovered in the late 18th century, Malaitans were subjected to harsh treatment from whaling boat crews and blackbirders (labour recruiters).

Guano

bat guanowanudroppings
In the 1860s, Peruvian blackbirders sought workers at their haciendas and to mine the guano deposits on the Chincha Islands.
In the 1840s and 1850s, thousands of men were blackbirded (coerced or kidnapped) from the Pacific islands and southern China.

Robert Towns

Captain Robert TownsR. TownsRobert Towns & Co
The experiment of exploiting Melanesian labour was discontinued in Australia until Robert Towns recommenced the practice in Queensland in the early 1860s.
Some of them were accused of being blackbirders and slavers and his association with them has tarnished Towns' reputation.

Ben Pease

The blackbirding era began in Fiji on 5 July 1865 when Ben Pease received the first licence to transport 40 labourers from the New Hebrides to Fiji in order to work on cotton plantations.
Ben Pease or Benjamin Pease, was a notorious blackbirder, engaged in recruiting and kidnapping Pacific Islanders to provide labor for the plantations of Fiji.

Yeppoon

Yeppoon, QueenslandYeppoon Seagulls
For example, Mr Melhuish of the Yeppoon Sugar Plantation was tried, but even though he was found responsible, the judge involved imposed only the minimum £5 fine and wished it could be an even lesser amount.
Along with other sugar growing areas of Australia, South Sea Islanders were used as labourers on the sugar plantations, often without their consent (see blackbirding).

Bully Hayes

William "Bully" Hayes[Bully] HayesBully" Hayes
The famous blackbirder, Bully Hayes kidnapped Islanders for the Fiji market in his Sydney registered schooner, the Atlantic.
William Henry "Bully" Hayes (1827 or 1829 – 31 March 1877) was a notorious American-born ship's captain who engaged in blackbirding in the 1860s and 1870s.

Australia Station

Australian StationCommander-in-Chief, Australia StationAustralian squadron
Certain officials in London were concerned enough with the situation to order a vessel of the Royal Navy based at the Australia Station in Sydney to do a cruise of investigation.

HMS Sandfly (1872)

HMS ''SandflySandfly
Officers of Royal Navy warships attempting punitive action were not exempt as targets with Lieutenant Bower and five crew of HMS Sandfly being killed in the Nggela Islands and Lieutenant Luckcraft of HMS Cormorant being shot dead at Espiritu Santo.
She commenced service on the Australia Station at Sydney in 1873 for anti-blackbirding operations in the South Pacific.

White Australia policy

White AustraliaEuropean-Chinese relationsthe White Australia Policy
This Act, which was part of a larger White Australia policy, made it illegal to import South Sea Islanders after March 1904 and mandated for the forcible deportation of all Islanders from Australia after 1906.
This and related practices of bringing in non-white labour to be cheaply employed was commonly termed "blackbirding" and refers to the recruitment of people through trickery and kidnappings to work on plantations, particularly the sugar cane plantations of Queensland (Australia) and Fiji.

John Patteson (bishop)

John Coleridge PattesonJohn PattesonBishop John Patteson
This led to violence against the missionaries themselves, the best example being the killing of Anglican missionary John Coleridge Patteson in 1871 at Nukapu.
He was not always welcomed, particularly since the native peoples were subject to abuses at the hands of blackbirders.

John Mackay (Australian pioneer)

John Mackay
At the port of Mackay, the labour schooner Isabella arrived with half the Kanakas recruited dying on the voyage from dysentery, while Captain John Mackay (after whom the city of Mackay is named), arrived at Rockhampton in the Flora with a cargo of Kanakas, of which a considerable number were in a dead or dying condition.
Under his command, this vessel conducted regular blackbirding recruiting voyages to the Pacific Islands.

South Sea Islanders

South Sea IslanderSouth Sea IslandAustralian South Sea Islander
These blackbirded people were called Kanakas or South Sea Islanders. This Act, which was part of a larger White Australia policy, made it illegal to import South Sea Islanders after March 1904 and mandated for the forcible deportation of all Islanders from Australia after 1906.
Some were kidnapped or tricked (or "blackbirded") into long-term indentured service.

Easter Island

Rapa NuiIsla de PascuaEaster
For several months between 1862–63, crews on Peruvian and Chilean ships combed the islands of Polynesia, from Easter Island in the eastern Pacific to the Gilbert Islands (now Kiribati) in the west, seeking workers to fill an extreme labour shortage in Peru.
The island was victimized by blackbirding from 1862 to 1863, resulting in the abduction or killing of about 1,500, with 1,408 working as indentured servants in Peru.

Erromango

E'''rromangoErromangaErromanga Island
Labour vessels involved in this period of blackbirding for the Fijian market also included the Donald McLean under the command of captain McLeod, and the Flirt under captain McKenzie who often took people from Erromango.
Between 1863 and 1906, around 40,000 people from what was then the New Hebrides were blackbirded onto ships to work as indentured labour on cotton and sugarcane plantations in Queensland, Australia.

Kiribati

Republic of KiribatiI-KiribatiGilbert Islands
For several months between 1862–63, crews on Peruvian and Chilean ships combed the islands of Polynesia, from Easter Island in the eastern Pacific to the Gilbert Islands (now Kiribati) in the west, seeking workers to fill an extreme labour shortage in Peru.
A passing trade, whaling the On-The-Line grounds, and labour ships associated with blackbirding visited the islands in large numbers during the 19th century with social, economic, political, religious and cultural consequences.