Such is the cry. Having taken a warm interest in' the emigration measures of the last two years, we rejoice to find that the government and people are now as one on this subject. We rejoice to find that the backwardness of settlers In former years was truly described it was not reluctance to act, but a conviction that action was use-less.
They said, and said truly, that while the colony was deluged with convicts the importation of free laborers was perhaps morally wrong-and certainly unavailing. This crisis is now past ; Tasmania, if -not a free country, will be so soon. The last convict ship has anchored-the last British convict has landed-the rag flag is down, and although the department -will be able to flutter it a short time longer, it will never look quite so red, it will only be half-mast high, soon not a rag will remain. Those who have struggled to ruin the social freedom of Tasmania, will hardly realise for some time the great and glorious change. This victory without violence or bloodshed ; this triumph over sordid interests and ferocious passions"! Who can tell how much is included in that one word Freedom ?
Soon all the convict supply will shell out ; the better part will become "the free among the free," not the freed slandered on an isthmus between emigrant distrust and convict envy. An English ship freighted with human beings will be-not a source of regret to one party or the other-but of general joy. We have seen the time past when the arrival of a convict chip -was a scene of un-seemly contention among employers ; when the officers of the convict department could gratify their corruption, pride, and vengeance. The time, too, is past when the arrival of an emigrant vessel drew down to the beach -a mob of villains to scowl and blaspheme and curse the " interlopers." All this is past, and, in fact, will soon be forgotten. Who "can count the price of that liberation which breaks not a foreign but a domestic yoke, which will revolutionise every village and homestead-which will make us all again conscious of British sentiments and principles-which has externally divorced the notion of crime and poverty ; and given honesty once more to our social Decalogue.
The struggle has indeed been long, but great is the victory ! And now we must all join heart and hand and encourage the settlement of our countrymen. We shall certainly And no disposition to depart whenever the circumstances of Van Diemen's Land are not less favourable than those of other colonies. We believe that our numbers will be at least doubled in five years; our fifty thousand will become a hundred thousand. What nonsense it is to talk of the country as nearly occupied : we remember that such was the cry 30 years ago. Centuries will elapse before the country will be filled ; and were land gradually put up, and always purchasable, in small sections as it ought to be, we should no more waul labour than they have generally done in South Australia. We want the 80 acre section plan. This would fill the colony with ploughs, harrows, and waggons lo be let ; and reduce farm service to one half.
The management of the emigrants on their arrival will demand great circumspection, jft is on this point our fears are great. The stoppage of transportation will reduce the feelings of asperity, with which convict servants usually regard emigrants ; but the system of indentures will expose those who happen to fall into bad hands, to much injustice. We say, positively, that the present police laws and officials are not to be trusted with free men. The emigrant in-denture system will enable masters to make unjust bargains if they are so inclined, and some plan must he devised of relieving the [emigrant in such cases-or all the employers' will be injured by the rapacity of a few tyrannical masters who may keep the emigrants constantly before the police, and propagate throughout the laboring community, a sense of insecurity, and thus render indentures worthless in the long run.
We should strongly advise every employer to limit the term to one year, or to insert some clause giving* a servant . remedy against a bargain, which time may show to have been unfair. The emigrant is an individual, will have no chance with a single master ; but where they form " the labor power," as a body they will ultimately break through all restrictions imposed to their secret conviction of right. it is in the power of a few Turkish masters to destroy confidence in the employers ns a class, and make nil workmen discontented and distrustful.
When the general good treatment shall inspire them with confidence, public opinion will support the execution of the law. This subject will be worth the notice of the council.
If a special magistrate were appointed to determine all questions between servant and masters, and were permitted to adjust certain difficulties in relation to contracts, it would probably be useful to all parties. The " pulling" plan must be dispensed with, if any expectation of smooth water is indulged. The least of all would be to bind an emigrant to pay his passage or serve his time, and give him his choice after the first year j and to this the matter will one day come.
We congratulate the colony on the movement in the right direction.