National Geographic : 1896 Nov
THE REVOLT OF THE U1TLANDERS fited by the mining industry from a pecuniary point of view is illustrated by the fact that the public revenue in 1894 was six times that in 1886. The Boers did not foster the foreign com munity on the Rand, in spite of its beneficial influence upon their finances. On the contrary, they held aloof, and actually threw many obstacles in the way of the progress of the industry. They evidently regarded the immigration as a new and insidious form of British invasion. The independence which they had achieved by remarkable efforts and sacrifices was jeopardized by a peaceful inroad, and they were in danger of losing their free dom by a process of absorption into a larger community growing in their own midst. That they should resist this new form of conquest by every means available to them was inevitable. Indeed, any other course would have belied their entire history. The most evident means of retaining control of their own destiny was to render the acquirement of the franchise difficult if not impossible, and this perhaps indispensable measure was promptly taken. So far as I can learn, both the liberal or progressive party and the conservative or Dopper party of the republic are in accord as to the policy of practically denying the franchise to foreigners. On other points they differ. The conservatives, who are repre sented by the present administration, do not include among their members a sufficient number of educated and professional men to fill the offices rendered needful by the new order of things. They cannot draw largely on the opposition to fill these places, and few of the Cape Boers, being British subjects, are available for the execution of the anti-English policy.* Hence it is to Holland that President Kruger is almost forced to turn for edu cated men of Dutch speech to carry out the Dopper program. The railway, too, from Delagoa bay to Johannesburg and other points in the Transvaal is in the hands of the Netherlands Rail way Company,t a fact which tends greatly to increase the influ ence of the Dutch in the Transvaal. It would also seem to be a deliberate plan with the conservative party to offset and mini mize English influence as far as possible by that of the Nether lands, from which the republic has nothing to fear. * According to Mr Wessels, in a lecture delivered in 1894, the fear of betrayal to Eng land is frankly stated as a sufficient reason for not appointing Cape Boers to office in the Transvaal. t The concession for this road was originally conferred under President Burgers in 1875, but the road was only completed so as to connect with the Cape system in 1894. It is said to be the most profitable railway in the world. The republic has the right to take possession of it.