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3-131 (Original)

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addressee,male author,male,Fawkner, John Pascoe,65
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Government English
Imperial Correspondence
Clark, 1975
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Your Committee having obtained evidence upon the question of Chinese Immigration, and their residence in this Province, from every available source, have arrived at the opinion that it possesses features having no parallel in any part of the British dominions.
Your Committee are of opinion that the Chinese migrate to this country exclusively to mine for gold and to trade among themselves, that their numbers exceed forty thousand (40,000), of which there are not more than four or five females, and those are of an inferior class. From the evidence adduced it appears that when the Chinese are located in other countries in large numbers they for the most part have the opportunity of intermarrying with native Asiatics - a practice which is largely followed. In this country there is no Asiatic or other race with whom it is desirable they should inter-marry, and thus large masses of men congregate together on the various gold fields, producing, as a necessary consequence, great social evils, immorality and crime, and bringing about results highly detrimental to the habits of the rising generation.
Your Committee have ascertained that the immigrant Chinese are composed principally, if not exclusively, of natives of Quang Tung, or that part of China of which Canton is the capital, with which the British nation is at present in open hostility. [69] These immigrants are not of that class commonly known as coolies, but comprise men from the country districts as well as from towns cultivators, traders, and mechanics. Their passage to this country is paid in part by themselves and partly by advances from the native bankers, or head men of their village, their relations and friends becoming security for the repayment of same.
As far as your Committee have been able to ascertain, they find that the Chinese hitherto have in no one instance applied themselves to the cultivation of the land, nor indeed to any of the industrial pursuits of the Colony, save that of digging for gold; their object being to acquire a sufficiency of means wherewith to return to their own country.
The advantages derived from the trade which the presence of such a vast population necessarily brings with it, your Committee feels assured affords no adequate compensation to the country for the large and increasing quantity of gold, amounting within one year to about 120,000 ounces, valued at half a million sterling, which they are annually abstracting from the natural wealth and resources of the country.
Your Committee have ascertained that the majority of the Chinese are amenable to the laws of the country; and, under a proper system of registration and management, through the agency of headmen of their own race, selected by themselves, order to some extent may be kept amongst them.
The fiscal regulations for the collection of rates or taxes imposed by the Government, provided they are clearly and distinctly defined and enforced with Justice and firmness, your Committee see no difficulty in carrying out.
That crimes of great magnitude have been committed by these people is evidenced in the records of the Supreme Court. Serious collisions between them and the European population are becoming more frequent and dangerous. The Committee, nevertheless, think that those collisions may be lessened in some degree by a well-defined and more stringent exercise of authority on the part of the Executive Government.
Your Committee are not insensible to the importance of the efforts which are being made by some members of this community to impart the advantages of Christian instruction to many of the Chinese race now located in the Colony, and they wish to express their sense of the high value they entertain of such efforts ; nevertheless, they cannot ignore the fact that ninety-nine-hundredths of their race are pagans, and addicted to vices of a greatly immoral character, They feel bound to state that the presence of such a large number of their class. In the midst of our great centres of population must necessarily have a most pernicious effect upon that of the rising generation with which they most frequently come in contact. [70]
Your Committee having given great attention to the important questions referred to them by the House after careful deliberation, are unanimously of opinion that it is absolutely necessary to place some restrictions upon the influx of Chinese into this country, without which, there is every probability of their coming in such vast numbers as to be wholly beyond the control of the Government, prejudicially affecting the welfare and future destinies of this community in an alarming and dangerous degree.
The Bill on this subject which has been brought up from the Assembly and referred to us, has been carefully examined in all its clauses, and your Committee are of opinion that it is adapted, with the alterations and additions suggested below, to meet the objects intended to be effected by it, and is in accordance with the spirit of the recommendations embodied in this Report.
(I) That any Chinaman found on the Gold Fields or elsewhere in the Colony, without a license or receipt, be subject to a penal servitude on the public works of the Colony for a period not exceeding three (3) months.
(2) That any person arrested under this Act as a reputed Chinaman, it shall be sufficient for the accuser to prove that the accused is reputed or considered by the accuser to be a Chinaman. His oath, or the oath of one witness, shall be sufficient proof, unless the contrary be shown, to make such person amenable to the provisions of this Act.