The Hero Packs a Punch: Sir Charles Hotham, Liberalism and West Africa, 1846–1850
Patrolling against the slave trade on the West African coast presented Royal Navy commanders with unique challenges. The Admiralty therefore selected officers for the station based on their diplomatic skills and social connections. Sir Charles Hotham’s command in the 1840s provides a useful window into how the informal empire was administered. Hotham’s actions reflected the tenets of British liberalism and gentlemanly capitalism.