« PreviousContinue »
disposed, were anxious to make an ex- | influence extended to appointments on change—the one desiring, for the reco- the staff of the army, as well as to promovery of his health, to remain in England ; tions and exchanges in the army itself; while the other, from a similar motive, secondly, That the Commander in Chief desired to go to the West Indies. These punished an individual by reducing bim gentlemen sought their object by every from full to half pay, for non-perforinance honourable means. The most urgent re- of a nefarious contract with his mistress; quests, and the most respectable recom- thirdly, that the Commander in Chief was mendations were made in their favour, but a direct party to all this shameful transacin vain. No mistress was resorted to; tion. The witnesses to this case are, Mrs. no bribe of 200 l. was offered ; major Clarke, Mr. Shaw, uncle to major Shaw, Macdonald was forced to go to the West Mr. Coutts's clerk, and Mrs. Shaw.Indies, and fell immediately a victim to VII.-I now come to the very novel case the climate; major Sinclair was forced to of colonel French and his levy. This offiremain in England, and survived but a cer was, through the influence of Mrs. few months. Thus was the country de-Clarke, appointed by the Commander in prived of two highly deserving officers. Chief to conduct a levy in the years 1804-5.
-VI. - The fourth case I have to The colonel was introduced to Mrs. Clarke adduce refers to major John Shaw, of col. by capt. Huxley Sandon, and the condition Champagne’s Ceylon regiment. Major upon which he obtained his appointment Shaw was appointed Deputy Barrack was, that Mrs. C. should have one guinea Master of tặe Cape of Good Hope upon out of the bounty of each man raised, tothe 3d of April, 1806, through the influ-gether with the sale or patronage of a ence of Mrs. Clarke. It was known that certain number of the commissions. The this officer by no means enjoyed the favour agreement being concluded, it was comof the duke of York; that in fact his municated to, and approved of, by the royal highness entertained some preju- Commander in Chief. Col. French was dices against him. But these obstacles accordingly sent by Mrs. Clarke to the Mrs. Clarke easily contrived to overcome : Horse Guards, and after many
interviews, for it was agreed to pay her 1,000l. for the lery was set on foot. As the levy the major's appointment. The appoint- proceeded, Mrs. Clarke received several ment was therefore made, and the major sums of money from col. French, capt. himself paid Mrs. Clarke 300 1. Soon Huxley Sandon, and a Mr. Corri. She after, 2001. more were sent to Mrs. Clarke, also received 500 l. from a Mr. Cockayne, by major Shaw's uncle, through Coutts's who is a well known solicitor in Lyon's-inn, bank, and the payment was made by one and a friend of capt. Huxley Sandon's. of Mr. Coutts's clerks. The remaining -VIII.-But, to return for a moment 500l. however, was not paid ; and when to Mr. Donovan, the garrison-battalion it was found not to be forthcoming, Mrs. lieutenant.—This gentleman, who was such Clarke was enraged, and threatened re- a prominent agent in those transactions, venge. She actually complained to the was acquainted with an old officer, a CapCommander in Chief of major Shaw's breachtain Tuck, whom he very strongly recomof contract, and the consequence was that mended to seek promotion; and to encouthe major was soon after put on half-pay. rage him by a display of the facility with I am in possession of several letters which which it might be attained, he sent him passed upon this subject, from major Shaw a written scale of Mrs. Clarke's prices, for and Mrs. Shaw, threatening both the different commissions, which, in stating, I Commander in Chief and Mrs. Clarke with beg leave to contrast with the regulated public exposure, &c. if their complaints prices of the Army: were not redressed, but in vain. In con- Mrs. Clarke's Prices. Regulated Prices. sequence of this business, I have been in- A Majority £. 900
£. 2600 duced to examine the half-pay list, in order A Company
1500 to see whether any similar reduction to A Lieutenancy 400
550 that of major Shaw had taken place in the An Ensigncy 200
400 Barrack Department; but I have found no From this scale it appears, that the funds such thing. Such officers being, in fact, I have before alluded to lost, in an enorkept on full-pay, even on the home staff. mous ratio to the gain of Mrs. Clarke, or This case of major Shaw was indeed the only any other individual acting upon the same instance I could find of such an officer being system.-- -IX -Here I am to take reduced to half-pay. The case of this officer leave of Mrs. Clarke. Here the scene then demonstrates, first, that Mrs. Clarke's closes upon her military negociations ; and in what follows, the Commander in professional merit, but merely through the Chief alone is interested. It appears that operation of undue influence, while so his royal highness required a loan of many hundreds of truly deserving men are 5000 1. from col. French, and Mr. Grant, slighted and overlooked? I would ask, of Barnard's inn, promised to comply with whether it be possible that our army can the request in procuring the money, pro- prosper--that its spirit can succeed, or its vided the Commander in Chief would use character be advanced, while such injushis influence and obtain payment to col. tice is tolerated? But I will not dwell French of a balance due to him by govern- upon those points—it is quite unnecessary. ment on account of the levy. This was -XI. –The facts I have stated are promised, but the Commander in Chief such as must suggest such reflections to failing to fulfil his part of the condition, any man's mind. The House must feel the loan be required was not advanced, the propriety, the necessity of grounding and 3000l. still remain due from govern- some proceeding upon such facts. The ment to col. French. The case of this proceeding I propose will, I have no doubt, lery shews, first, that Mrs. Clarke, in ad-be acceded to. I am sure I have stated dition to promotions in the army, to ex- quite enough to induce the House to give changes, and appointments on the staff
, me what I ask-I could state more if nepossessed the power of augmenting the military cessary. There is, indeed, one thing to force of the country; secondly, that in this which I cannot omit alluding. The House case, as in all others, she was allowed to must be astonished indeed at the corrupreceive pecuniary consideration for the ex. tion of the times, when told, that there is ercise of her influence; thirdly, that the at this moment a public office in the City Commander in Chief endeavoured to derive for the Sale of Commissions, at the same a pecuniary accommodation for himself in- reduced scale as that of Mrs. Clarke, and dependently of Mrs. Clarke's advantages that the persons who manage this office The witnesses in this case are colonel stated in my presence that they were the French, captain Huxley Sandon, Mrs. agents of the present fatourite mistress, Mrs. Clarke, Mr. Corri, Mr. Grant, capt. Tuck, (urey. Indeed, these agents declared furand Mr. J. Donovan.--- -X.—The last ther, that they were also enabled to discase with which I shall at present trouble pose of places both in Church and State, the House is that of capt. Maling. This and that ihey did not hesitate to say, that gent. was appointed to an ensigncy in the they were employed by two of the first 87th reg. on the 28th of Nov. 1805; to a officers in the adıninistration. But these lieutenancy in the same reg. on the 26th are points to which I may, on a future of Nov. 1806; and to captaincy in the day, feel myself more enabled to speak at Royal African Corps, under the command of large. The hon. member concluded with the duke of York's own secretary, col. Gordon, moving for the appointment of a Comon the 15th of Sept. 1808. I have every mittee to inquire into the conduct of the reason to believe capt. Maling to be a very Commander in Chief, with regard to Prounexceptionable character, although I can- motions and Exchanges in the Army, &c. not help pronouncing the mode of his
&c. motion as extremely exceptionable. But Sir FRANCIS BURDETT seconded the this promotion was eflected through the motion. influence of the favourite agent, Mr. The SecretaRY AT WAR said, that Greenwood, in whose office Mr. Maling wus he did not rise to give any opposition a clerk, remaining at his desk while advanced to the motion. (Heur, hear, from the Treuin the army by such an extraordinary course sury Bench.) If he did so, he would ill by a course which interfered with the in- consult the wishes and worse consult the terests, which superseded the rights of interests of the Commander in Chief *. many meritorious officers who had long The facts which the hon. gent. had brought served in the army—who had fought and forward were of the most serious nature, bled for their country. This Mr. Maling has also, I understand, had, while so pro- * From a regard to the interests of the moted, some appointment of pay-master in Commander in Chief, he felt unfeigned suIreland. I would appeal to the candour tisfaction, that, at length, an opportunity of the House, to the common sense of any was afforded of instituting an effectual inman or body of men, whether it be right, quiry into the grounds of the various cawhether it be tolerable, that such an ac- lumnses und misrepresentations which had, of cumulation of favours should be conferred late, been so industriously circulated upon any individual without any claim of I against that illustrious personage.
and well deserved the attention of the that it was regularly recorded in that House. He hoped the House would go office who recommended the promotion, into the inquiry, but listen to no charge and the documents would be found there, unless it was clearly and distinctly stated. so that all these transactions might be Charges on these or any grounds distinctly completely traced. With regard to the stated, his royal bighness was ready to produce of the half-pay fund, the mode meet, and even desirous of going into in which the money came into the office, the investigation. This, he believed, was and the mode in which it was issued, were all that was necessary for him to say in recorded. Under these circumstances, be this stage of the business; but he requested rejoiced that a committee was to be apthe indulgence of the House while he made pointed, and he hoped they would make a a few observations not foreign to the ques- special Report—so much with regard to tion. With regard to the private transac- the alledged facts; but he must observe, tions stated by the hon. gent. he had never with respect to the removal of the Barrack heard of them before, and therefore could Master of the Cape of Good Hope, that not be prepared to give an answer. But such removals were circumstances of comhe could contradict those that were stated
The instance in questo have occurred at the Horse Guards. tion related to the establishment at CeyThe papers respecting the half-pay fund lon; and in foreign establishments, though were before the House, and he had stated the facts stated by the hon. gent. should in his place, without being contradicted at be true, it constituted no ground of charge, the time, that his royal highness bad for it was in the ordinary course of the given up a great part of his patronage for service. With respect to the exchange the benefit of that fund. It was needless between an officer going to the West Into go into the facts, more particularly as a dies and one remaining here, the Com. full inquiry would necessarily take place. mander in Chief would be in a most exHe wonld only remark, that the thanks traordinary situation if it was to be made which the House had been conferring on a ground of accusation, that he had not the army reflected ne small credit on the consented to an arrangement tending to Commander in Chief. His gallant friend the convenience, perhaps to the benefit of near him (sir Arthur Wellesley) might per- individuals. As to one of these gentlemen haps, state of what description the army dying here, and the other in the West was which the Commander in-Chief had Indies, if these general charges were to be put into his hands. Could the army have listened to, it would be impossible for a achieved the great exploits, for which it person in his royal highness's illustrious had been distinguished, if it had been ill- station to conduct the business. The cirmanaged for a series of years. It had been cumstances stated by the hon. gent, went universally allowed, that to make courage to shew, that his royal highness, with a available in the day of battle discipline was view to put a litile money in his own necessary; and it was well-known how pocket, had encroached upon the half-pay muck the Commander in Chief had attend- | fund. But the House would recollect, ed to that object, which had rendered the that this fund was established by his royal army so formidable to the enemy. Another highness, and the money furnished from fact, to which it was important to allude, the produce of commissions, which he was the extreme order and regularity might have given away without any sale at which had been introduced into the office all. But the Commander in Chief gave of the Commander in Chief, which the in- | up his own patronage, and saved to the qui y would prove.
public an immense sum-and yet he was Sir Arthur W'ELLESLEY rejoiced that the charged with an embezzlement of this honourable gent. had at length brought sort ! But he was glad that a full enquiry 'forward facts, to which a specific inquiry was to take place. There was still one might be directed—and he rejoiced also, topic on which he would be to blame, if that the character of the Commander in he did not say a few words—he alluded Chief would not be the subject of that to the state of the army under his comgeneral sort of discussion, which some-, mand last summer. He must say, that times took place in that House; but that never was there an army in a better state every fact would be fully and fairly sifted. as far as depended on the Con mander in It had tallen to his lot to know how pro- Chief, and he must further say, that if the motions were conducted in the office of army had not performed the service for the Commander in Chief, and he knew which it was destined, the blame would
not have tested with the Commander in it was no less so to write down all the estaChief, but with him-(heur ! hear') * blishments of the country. By means of
Mr. Yorke observed, that he never the press, the liberty of which was so valistened to a charge more serious, and he luable, and the licentiousness of which had heard it with the greatest possible was so pernicious, it appeared to be the concern, both on account of the Com- design of the CONSPIRATORS to write mander in Chief, and the hon. gent, who down the military system through the had brought it forward, (hear! hear!) who Commander in Chief-the army through took so heavy a responsibility upon himself. its generals, and other establishments But he was glad that the House had come through the persons most conspicuous in at last to some charges against h. r. h. the each Commander in Chief in a tangible form.t. [The remainder of the Debate shall be gives Publications which he would treat as
in my next.) libels, (hear! heur!) had lately appeared against the Commander in Chief, and these Now, as I said before, we need not wait had been circulated with a pertinacity for this discussion, in order to be able to hitherto unexampled. He was glad, there form a judgment upon certain very imporfore, that something was now brought for- tant points, introduced into this debate; ward in a tangible form, and he hoped because those points are quite distinct from the House would do its duty to itself, to the main subject of the debate. the country, and to the Royal House of Upon the statement of Mr. Wardle no BRUNSWICK-(Loud cries of hear !. hear!); observation need be made. It consists of that blame might rest where it ought to be facts; not of declamation or loose asserfixed, and that if there was no ground for tion; but of specific facts, the truth or these accusations, justice might be done falshood of which may be, and are to be, to the Commander in Chief. And he sin- ascertained. I should, however, do great cerely hoped, that if the latter should turn violence to my feelings, were I to suppress out to be the fact-the hon. gent. would an expression of my admiration of the be enabled to acquit himself, by shewing manly as well as the able manner, in which at least, that there existed some probable that statement was made. The speech reasons in support of the hery charge was, at once, concise, plain, and impreswhich he had taken upon himself. For my sive; the allegations were unequivocal, own part, Mr. Yorke continued, I believe the motives undisguised, and the principles that there exists a CONSPIRACY of the such as do honour to the heart of the most atrocious and diabolical kind against speaker, such principles as a great mahis royal highness (loud cries of hear! jority of us entertain, but such as very hear!)—founded on the JACOBINICAL few of us indeed, have the courage to spirit which appeared at the commence- There was no hypocrisy in the ment of the French revolution; for though speech ; no affected solicitude that the this spirit did not shew itself exactly in charges might prove false. The persuathe same form as at first, when once raised sion in the mind of the speaker evidently it was not easily quelled, and it never was, that he was stating truths; and, accould promote its views with better hopes cordingly, he appeared to be afraid of noof success than by TALKING down illus- body. The Morning-Post news-paper trious persons (heur ! heur!). It was the calls it “a curious speech.” If by object to write down his royal highness rious,” he, the editor, means rare, I must
confess that it was “ curious' in the high. * If that army had not performed those est degree. services, which it had pleased that House to As to the reported and published honour with its thanks, it would not have speeches of the other speakers, the first been their or the Commander in Chief's thing that struck me was, that they should fault, but his own; and whatever enthusiasm have contained any thing at all, except they had felt, was the result of the example what might relate to the mode of inquiry. and discipline, afforded by the illustrious The charges were so clearly stated, that person at the head of the army,
there seemed to be nothing to do but, at + At length they could reach in a tangi- once, to fix upon the mode of inquiring ble shape some of those libels which had for into them. However, it appeared to be some time past been more assiduously and an occasion for many persons to express pertinaciously circulated than at any for their opinions relating to the person acmer period in this country so prolific in cused, and, therefore, we will notice what libels.
I they said, it being desirable that nothing
CU. . +
should escape publicity that belongs to of the 50th regiment, when they were this important subject.
making that gallant charge at Vimiera, A direct denial of the facts does not before which the French instantly ran like appear to have been made by any one; but, a: flock of sheep; suppose we were to the Secretary at War (general sir James admit, that the brave private dragoon, who Pulteney, who marched against Ferrol, as took general Lefebvre; suppose we were the reader will remember) said, that, as a to admit, that our regiments before Corunproof that the army had not been badly na, who, when engaged against triple managed, as a proof that the Duke of York | their force, in point of numbers, and who, had not abused his powers, the excellent
at the end of a march that had left even discipline of our army might be cited, and the officers barefooted, stood like a wall for the proof of the goodness of that dis- before the enemy, and when they saw cipline, he referred to sir Arthur Welles- fresh numbers pouring down, gare three ley. Sir Arthur, who appears to have huzzas, rushed forward upon the gatherbeen seated near sir James, bore testimony ing host, drove them up the bill, and by to the excellence of this discipline ; im- that act of almost unexampled bravery seputed, in part, to the Duke, that valour the cured the safety of the embarkation : supconsequence of which had recently been pose we were to admit, that all these men a subject of the thanks of the House ; and were inspired solely by the “example of concluded by saying, that, whatever cn- the Duke of York. Nay, suppose we were thusiasm the army had felt was the result to admit, to its full extent, the idea of of the example and discipline afforded by Mr. Yorke ; surpose we were to admit, the illustrious person at the head of the that it was the Duke who alone bad renarmy. Mr. Yorke said, that, at the time dered the English soliery worthy the when the Duke took the army in hand, it name of an army ; that he, and he alone, was in such a state as scarcely to deserve the had poured courage imo ihe breasts of name of an army.-Now, whatever others Britons, and had given thenı strength of may think of the matter, I do not believe, bone and of sinew. Suppose we were to that any, even the smallest portion, of the admit all this, and, I think, it is hard if strength or the bravery of my countrymen a broader admission couid be demanded, is to be ascribed to the Duke of York, to or wished for, even by the most zealous any branch of the government, or to any Anti-jacobin in the country; suppose we other cause than that which proceeds from were to admit all this, what would the adnature. I look upon steady courage ; upon mission make; of what weight would it a temper to resist or attack without trepi- be; how would it at all alter the case, dation; to bear up when they come to when set against facts such as those stated the pinch ; I look upon these as qualities by Mr. Wardle? The skill and the courage natural to the people of this kingdom; nor of the Duke of York are things which will I, upon any account, give my assent, appear to me to have nothing at all express or tacit, to any assertion leading to do with his mode of distributing to a contrary conclusion. But, the as- promotion. Nothing at all to do with cribing of the enthusiasm of the English those bargains and sales mentioned by soldiers at Vimiera to discipline is what I | Mr. Wardle. Mr. Wardle plainly stated, cannot understand. Discipline consists of that Mrs. Clarke, with the connivance restraints, at least; generally it implies of the Duke of York, had received so checks, pains and penalties,' Discipline much a head upon a new levy. Is this may, and does, produce prompt obedience, to be answered by citing the military resubmission, and, of course, order and regu- nown of the Duke of York? Mr. Wardle larity ; but, that it should fill the soul with states, that a man was going through a enthusiasm is, to say the least of it, some- long course of military promotion and thing wonderful. Example,” indeed, pay, while he was actually a clerk in the may inspire an army with enthusiasın ; agent, Greenwood's, office. Is this to be and as to the probable effect of the Duke of answered by telling us, that our army York's example ; the example afforded by his fought well at Vimiera? No, no. Such facts battles; as to this, I am sure, it is quite un- are to be efficiently met by nothing short necessary for me to say one word to any of flat denial; and, unless they can be so living creature in this kingdom.-After met, at once, it were much better to wait all, however, what has this to do with the the want of proof on the part of those, main subject; the great subject now from whom the accusation has proceeded. before the parliament and the public? There was another argument, made use Suppose we were to admit, that the men of by Mr. Adam, which does not seem