Here’s an excerpt from Spenser St. John’s “Hayti, or the Black Republic”:
“The vexed question as to the position held by the negroes in the great scheme of nature was continually brought before us whilst I lived in Hayti, and I could not but regret to find that the greater my experience the less I thought of the capacity of the negro to hold an independent position.
As long as he is influenced by contact with the white man, as in the southern portion of the United States, he gets on very well. But place him free from all such influence, as in Hayti, and he shows no sign of improvement; on the contrary, he is gradually retrograding to the African tribal customs, and without exterior pressure will fall into the state of the inhabitants on the Congo.
If this were only my own opinion, I should hesitate to express it so positively, but I found no dissident voice among experienced residents since I first went to Hayti in January 1863.
I now agree with those who deny the negro could ever originate a civilisation, and that with the best of educations he remains an inferior type of man. He has as yet shown himself totally unfitted for self-government, and incapable as a people to make any progress whatsoever. To judge the negroes fairly, one must live a considerable time in their midst, and not be led away by the theory that all races are capable of equal advance in civilisation. …”