ID# 1956:
Issac Costa letter to Karl Pearson, with observations of race mixing in Jamaica provided his friend, "a relative of Florence Nightingale" (11/17/1908)
Pages: (1|2)
University College London, KP, 382

Issac Costa letter to Karl Pearson, with observations of race mixing in Jamaica provided his friend, &quote;a relative of Florence Nightingale&quote; (11/17/1908)

[handwritten]Name not for publication[end handwritten] (1) White x Negro gives mulatto. There are different shades of black so that some mulattos may be lighter in hue than others. (2) Mulatto x White gives Quadroon. (3) Mulatto x Negro gives Sambo. (4) Mulatto x Mulatto gives Mulatto. In all cases I have found, after 32 years experience in this island, that alternate members of a mixed colour family are slightly lighter or darker in colour; for instance in the case of Mulatto x White the first child may be of a slightly lighter shade than the second; - the third lighter than the fourth, but of the same hue as the first; and so on. The same is noticeable in the case of Jews, fair x dark, one fair one dark in each family. (Fair means the German Jew with reddish hair; dark means the Southern Jew, but with no negro blood.) I have never come across a white or a black as the offspring of White x Mulatto or Quadroon; but the tendency appears to be for the skin to get lighter in colour should mulattos intermarry for some time. There is one peculiarity I have noticed, the "bouquet d'afrique" is sometimes very pronounced in some of the crosses, even in Octoroons, but this happens to not all of the family, and may only happen to one. It would be hard to tell that some people were not white were it not for this peculiarity. The prominence of lips, flatness of nose, and other negro characteristics, sometimes show-up in some of the offspring of mixed colours, but in a modified form; and very often get toned down to appear almost indistinguishable, with good living. I should say that a full-blooded Negro gradually inclines to become lighter in hue when in a good position and with civilizing influences. This shade I have dubbed "Pear's soap Black". Civilization and education, with healthy surroundings, seem to tone down some of the outstanding features. Illicit connection of mixed races may cause some exceptions to the ordinary rule; such as occurs in the story of the man who said he was so dark in colour because a negro ran after his (white) mother when she was first married. The reply of the aceptic was "I guess that nigger caught your mother." I have seen nothing to alter my opinion that the original meaning of blended colour is correct; that is as stated above in regard to Mulatto, Quadroon, and Sambo. Octoroon is White x Quadroon. I should say that if a blackish child happened in a family that should be mulatto, that child was fathered by a black man. [initialed] [end]

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