TRINIDAD: LORD HOBART TO GOVERNOR SIR THOMAS HISLOP, 2 February 18041
By my last dispatch (a duplicate of which is herewith transmitted) you will perceive the anxiety of His Majesty's Ministers to introduce into the Island of Trinidad, with the least possible delay, so much of the laws of Great Britain as may be judged expedient for the security of the persons and properties of His Majesty's subjects, and for the general advancement of the interests of the settlement.
In considering this subject, you will advert to the several constitutions under which His Majesty's settlements in America and the West Indies are governed, vizt.
1st. That which obtains in the Old Colonies; namely a Legislature consisting of the Governor as His Majesty's representative, with a Council and an Assembly.
2ndly. That which consists of a Governor and Council, without an Assembly; as was formerly the Government of the province of Quebec and is at present of the Island of Cape Breton.
3dly. That which prevails in a conquered territory governed, during His Majesty's pleasure, by its ancient laws under the sovereign authority of the King delegated to His representative the Governor, as is at present the case in the Island under your charge and in Saint Lucie.
Trinidad having by the late treaty of peace become to all intents and purposes a British island and all its inhabitants subjects of the British Crown, it is extremely desirable that a form of Government, as nearly approaching to that which subsists in His Majesty's other colonies as the situation of the settlement will admit of, should be established without delay.
It being however understood that neither the present internal circumstances of the island nor the actual state of its population will as yet warrant the formation of a House of Assembly or the general introduction of the British laws and customs as they prevail in the Old Colonies, it is essential that the measures now to be taken should have for their object the laying the foundation of the gradual advancement of the colony to such a state as will enable His Majesty in due____________________