The History of the Island of Dominica (Unabridged) Thomas Atwood Author
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It is greatly to be lamented, that although the island of Dominica is so very capable of being rendered one of the chief, if not the best, the English have in the West Indies; yet, from a want of knowledge of its importance, or inattention, it is at this time almost as much unsettled, as when it was ceded to Great Britain, near thirty years ago.This is the more remarkable, from the great consequence the possession of it is to the English, in case of a rupture with France, it being the key of the British dominions in that part of the world, and from its situation between the two principal settlements of the French, Martinique and Guadeloupe, it is the only place in the West Indies, by which there is a possibility for Great Britain to maintain the sovereignty of those seas.[iv]It has moreover many conveniences for the service of both an army and fleet, which few other West India islands can boast; and was it to be well settled with British subjects, would be of material assistance to our other possessions, by furnishing them with many articles of which they very often are greatly in need.For the purpose of bringing forth to view these capabilities of Dominica, the following history of that island is submitted to the candid perusal of a generous public by the author; whose chief inducement for writing it, was his hope, that it might be some small means of service to a country, in which he has spent several years of his life, and the prosperity of which, it is his ardent wish to see speedily promoted.The history of distant settlements belonging to Great Britain, it is presumed, cannot fail of being acceptable to every Englishman who wishes well to his country; and however deficient this essay of his may be, in point of erudition, correctness, or correspondent circumstances, yet, from its being the[v] first on the subject, the author hopes it may meet with a favourable reception.It falls not within the compass of this work to enter into details of acts of the legislature, the conduct of governors, or of individuals of that island; these he leaves for a more extensive work, or for abler pens to record; and if what is here submitted to public perusal serve in the least to promote the welfare of the present and future inhabitants of Dominica, and thereby the interests of the British nation at large, the purpose of the author by this publication will be fully answered.


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