The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers


Major F. Hall[1] to T. C. Macnaghten,[2] Colonial Office

Dear Macnaghten

I forward the attached copy of a letter intercepted by the Censors,[3] for such action as you may consider necessary.
The addressee of the letter is a soudanese and editor of the "African Times and Orient Reviews,"[4] a monthly magazine devoted to the interests of the Coloured Races. Yours very truly,
Hall, Major
PRO, CO 554/36. TLS, recipient's copy.
    
[1] The War Office List for 1917 includes a Captain (temporary Major) F. Hall, who was a general staff officer, 2d grade, in MI5D, the branch of British Military Intelligence responsible for conducting counterespionage throughout the British dominions and colonies. It worked through official correspondents, which usually included governors, colonial secretaries, and local chiefs of police ("Report on 'Special Intelligence' Organization in the Self-Governing Dominions and Colonies in Conjunction with the Central Special Intelligence Bureau," October 1917 [Confidential and Secret Correspondence], JA, CSO 1B/5/829; Judithe M. Blacklaw, British Ministry of Defence, London, to Robert A. Hill, 29 September 1993).
    
[2] Terence Charles Macnaghten (1872–1944) was appointed first-class clerk in the Colonial Office in 1904 (DOCOL, 1917; WWW).
    
[3] British Military Intelligence was divided into two branches. The first branch (MI1, MI2, MI3, and MI4) collected positive intelligence from the war zone, foreign countries, and the British secret service. The second branch was responsible for the collection of negative intelligence; in addition to MI5 (counterintelligence), it included MI6 (war-trade data), MI7 (press control and propaganda), MI8 (telegraph and cable censorship), and MI9 (postal censorship) ("Report on 'Special Intelligence' Organization in the Self-Governing Dominions and Colonies"; Winston S. Churchill, secretary of state for war, "Reduction of Estimates for Secret Services," 19 March 1920, Lloyd George Papers F9/2/16; John Bulloch, M .I. 5: The Origin and History of the British Counter-espionage Service [London: Arthur Barker, 1963]).
    
[4] The African Times and Orient Review (ATOR), which for a period in 1913 employed Marcus Garvey in its editorial office on Fleet Street, was edited and published in London by Dusé Mohamed (later known as Dusé Mohamed Ali). He initially intended it as a trade magazine serving West Africa and used its columns to promote his own business ventures in the region and to support the political cause of Africans and colonial peoples in their confrontation with European imperialism.
ATOR was intended to fill the need "for a Pan-Oriental Pan-African journal at the seat of the British Empire which would lay the aims, desires, and intentions of the Black, Brown and Yellow races—within and without the Empire—at the throne of Caesar" (foreword, ATOR 1 [July 1912]: iii). At the same time, ATOR's editorial policy took care to express its essential loyalty and a professed belief in racial harmony. ATOR appeared as a monthly from July 1912 to December 1913, and as a weekly from 24 March to 18 August 1914. Publication was suspended because of World War I for over two years, when the journal was banned in India and the British African colonies, but it was resumed on a monthly basis from January 1917 until October 1918. After another suspension of publication, the journal reappeared under the title Africa and Orient Review from January to December 1920. In June 1928 a final single issue was published in New York under the title Africa.
The official British attitude toward the publication was summarized by the recollections of two British colonial officials in November 1917. One noted that "in the old days the magazine was considered to be of doubtful loyalty, owing to Dusé Mohamed's pan-Ethiopian programme"; the other commented that "Dusé Mohammed, the editor of the African Times and Orient Review, is a rather doubtful character whose paper, before the war, was suspect, being inclined to the Ethiopian movement and believed to be in touch with undesirable elements in India and Egypt" ("African Times and Orient Review, and Dusé Mohamed Ali," PRO, CO 554/35/55259). ATOR's "pan-Ethiopian"—i.e., Pan-African—character was reflected in the magazine's agents: Rev. Attoh Ahuma, West Africa; John E. Bruce, U.S.; H. C. Solomon, Panama Canal Zone; and F. Z. S. Peregrino, Cape Town, South Africa. ATOR was represented in Jamaica, its only West Indian base, by the Jamaica Times.