By Jon Lunn
This very important publication is the 1st in-depth background of the Rhodesian railway process. masking the interval 1888-1947, while the Rhodesian railway procedure used to be privately owned by way of Cecil Rhode's British South Africa corporation, this ebook makes use of the Rhodesian railway approach as a prism wherein it refracts many dimensions of the imperial event in principal and southern Africa, starting from the impulses underpinning the neighborhood pursuits of Rhodes himself to the origins of black employee protest within the Rhodesias.
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Additional resources for Capital and Labour on the Rhodesian Railway System, 1888–1947
But somehow they live on. , above all Cecil Rhodes. How, somehow, did their schemes live on? A level of duplicity and machination no doubt contributed. But the answer lies in the fact that they had changed the principles. Their schemes were conceived in terms of capital in its monopoly form. This Jed to the adoption of distinctive financial structures and strategies in order to push on railway construction. Throughout the period of primary railway construction, but particularly in the 1890s, the patronage of 'close friends' of the BSA Co.
Further, although the level of railway rates did contribute towards a high cost of living in the Rhodesias, it has to be remembered that they were the 'back of beyond', albeit an imperial 'back of beyond'. And when rates on consumer articles were reduced, local merchants often saw to it that the reductions filtered into their pockets rather than into reduced prices. 84 Mosley also shows that railway rates affected different economic sectors of settler capital differently. This contributed towards the growth of 'political faultlines' within the settler communities of the Rhodesias, particularly from the 1920s onwards.
This company in turn set up the Beira Junction Railway Company with a capital of £62,500 in five-shilling shares and £250,000 6 per cent debentures. Despite these inauspicious circumstances d'Erlangers were able to raise capital by placing £196,000 of the debentures privately at 52 per cent of their face-value with a substantial bonus in shares. B. 54 This one financial operation crystallises the byzantine financial framework within which the BSA Co. sustained railway construction in the Rhodesias.