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At this rate the population of the City
Vice and Immorality-Messrs. Sullivan, Leech, selt: would be now
82,780 zer, Fullerton and Jackson. And of the County
103,750 To compare bills and present them to the Governor
for his approbation-Messrs. Hay, Scott, Bertolet, lousTotal
186,530 ton and Drumheller.
State Library-Messrs. Duncan, Burden and Kerlin. In 1820, the City contained 63,802
Thursday, Dec. 4. County
The message from the governor was read, and refer136,497
red to Messrs. Hawkins, Hay and Scott. Which compared with 1828
On Friday morning John De Pui, Esq. was unani
mously re-elected Clerk of the Senate.-Mr. De Pui Would exhibit an increase of
nominated Walter S. Franklin, Esq. as his assistant, which
50,033 Or of, in the City
was unanimously approved of. in the County
Samuel S. Stambaugh was elected printer of the Eng31,055
lish Journal; and Jacob Stoever printer of the German 50,033
Journal. How far this calculation may prove correct, remains to be proved by an actual enumeration. It is probably of the Senate.
E. F. Cryder & Co. were elected printers of the Bills the nearest approximation that can be made in the absence of better information.
Friday, Dec. 5. The Districts of Passyunk, Moyamensing, and East Mr. Bertolet--the petition of citizens of the county and West Southwark, contained in 1821, 4015 taxables, of Schuylkill, praying for the creation of a fund for the and in 1828, 5095-making an increase of nearly formation of a general system of education. Referred twenty-seven per cent.
to the committee on education. The Districts of Kensington, Penn, and Northern Li- Mr. Hawkins, from the committee appointed to arberties, contained in 1821, 7396 taxables, and in 1828, range the several items of the governor's message, re10,971-being an increase of about forty-eight per cent. ported sundry resolutions, referring the governor's mesThe result of the whole will stand thus:
age to committees, which were twice read and adoptThe increase of taxables, from 1821 to 1828– ed. City
30 per cent. Mr. Krebs read in his place, and on leave given, preNorthern Districts
sented to the chair, a bill, entitle: an act authorising Southern do.
the governor to incorporate the Schuylkill Valley and City and County
Navigation Company. In 1786 there appears to be a striking difference be
Saturday, Dec. 6. tween the taxables of the county and those in 1779, proba. Mr. Wise presented the petition of citizens of Westbly the effects of the revolution. Also, between the tax-moreland county, praying that a state road may be laid ables in the city in 1793 and 1800, occasioned perhaps by out from Robbstown in. said county to Cooks-town in the different fevers within that period.
Fayette county. Referred to Messrs. Wise, DrumhellIt is to be observed, that in 1825, there was an altera er and Ringland. tion of the limits of the Eastern Wards of the City, and Mr. Burden—the memorial of Thomas F. Gordon, an addition of a new ward, (Pine,) formed out of New praying for legislative patronage for a Digest of the Market and Cedar wards. From the table of votes it would appear that at nei- Referred to Messrs. Burden, Ray and Houston.
Statutes of Pennsylvania, about to be published by him. ther of the late elections, did more than one-half of the Mr. Hay--the petition of citizens of the city of Phi-taxables vote.
ladelphia, praying that the aldermen of the said city
may be elected by the people. Laid on the table. PROCEEDINGS OF THE LEGISLATURE OF
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
Dec. 2d.—The house met at an early hour, but adSenators.
journed till half past two o'clock in the afternoon, when A resolution for furnishing each senator with three 94 members answered to their names. Ner Middles. daily newspapers, &c. was adopted.
Mr. Hawkins offered a resolution, which was adopted, wartlı re-elected Speaker-resolutions passed to furnish inviting the electors of president to convene in the se- members, &c. with newspapers, and to pay postage on nate chamber, to-morrow, at 10 o'clock.
letters, &ć, documents to and from members. The following are the standing committees of the senate, with the names of the members composing them.
Wednesday, Dec. 3. Accounts-Messrs. Logan, Hunt, King, Hay and Mor- În the House of Representatives-Mr. Wilkins preris.
sented a petition from inhabitants of Allegheny county, Claims—Messrs. Herbert, Leech, Ray, Scott and Sul. praying for an appropriation in aid of opening a road livan.
from Uniontown to Pittsburg. Judiciary System-Messrs. Hawkins, King, Kelley, Mr. Frick-four petitions from citizens of this comMiller and Morris.
monwealth, praying for an appropriation in aid of imMilitia System-Messrs. Ogle, Ryon, Hambright, Ring- proving the state road from Rodger's Ferry to Sunbury. land and Seltzer.
Mr. Moore-a petition from inhabitants of Erie counBanks—Messrs. Kerlin, Burden, Wisc, Miller and ty, praying for the repeal of the acts which prohibit the M'Clure.
issuing and circulating bank notes of a less denomina Education -Messrs. Kelley, Herbert, Fullerton, Hunt / tion than five dollars. and Houston.
Mr. Kerr-tivo petitions from inhabitants of WashingRoads, Bridges & Inland Navigation--Messrs. Brown, ton, Fayette, Westmoreland and Allegheny counties, Duncan, M'Clure, Powell and Wise.
praying for the erection of a new county out of parts Agricolture & Domestic Manufactures— Messrs. Pow- of ihe said counties. Referred to Messrs. Kerr, Patterell, Ray, Reiff, Drumheller and Krebs.
son, of MiMin, Shindel, Lawson and Martin. Election Districts-Messrs. Ryon, Hambright, Jack- Mr. Simpson-two petitions from inhabitants of the son, Bertolet and Ringland.
city of Philadelphia, praying that provision may be made by law for the election of the aldermen of the said city Mr. Boyd--a petition from the Pennsylvania Instituby the people. Referred to the members from the city tion for the Deaf and Dumb, praying for a continuance of Philadelphia.
of legislative patronage to that Institution. Referred to Mr. Binder-a petition from inhabitants of Philadel. the members from the city of Philadelphia. phia county, praying for the incorporation of a company Mr. Bonsall-a petition from sundry inhabitants of for the construction of a Rail Road from the neighbour- the city of Philadelphia, praying that provision may be hood of Willow street, on the river Delaware, through made by law for the election of the ‘aldermen of the the Northern Liberties and Penn township, to the river said city by the people. Schuylkill. Referred to the members from the county Messrs. Snyder, Hastings and Lobach, were appointed of Philadelphia.
a committee to bring in a bill, entitled an act to repeal Mr. Lehman-a petition from the select and common an act entitled an act for the relief of the poor. councils of the city of Philadelphia, praying for an ex- Messrs. Snyder, Martin and Hassinger, were appointed tension of their powers in relation to pavements in the a committee to bring in a bill entitled an act relative to said city. Referred to the meinbers from the city of the opening roads in the city and county of PhiladelPhiladelphia.
phia. The speaker announced, that in conformity to the A number of items of unfinished business of the last 28th rule of this house, he had appointed the following session were referred to appropriate committees. standing committees, viz:
Invitation to Gen. JACKSON, to visit the Capitol of PennMessrs. Cunningham, Blair, Boyd, Binder, Mallary, Kerr, and Overfield, a committee of Ways and Means.
sylvania. Messrs. Mallary, Champneys, Workman, M‘Sherry, Gen. Duncan, of Philadelphia, offered the following Evans, (Mont.) Banks and Waugh, a committee on the resolution: judiciary system:
Whereas, Gen. Andrew Jackson, president elect of Messrs. Wilkins, Slemmer, Hergesheimer, Gebhart, the United States, is expected soon to visit the city of Fuller, Robison and Geiger, a committee on claims. Pittsburg on his way to the seat of the General Govern
Messrs. Patterson, (Miffling) Forrey, Pile, Lobach, ment, and whereas, it would be bighly gratifying to the Kline, Clymer and Wolfersberger, a committee on agri- citizens of this commonwealth, to welcome to their Caculture.
pitol, “the man who has filled the measure of his counMessrs. Bonsall, Cooper, Blodget, Petriken, Post, try's glory”-therefore, Caldwell and Lambert, a committee on education.
Resolved, That a committee, to consist of three memMessrs. Kreps, Lauman, Siter, Gebhart, Cox, Hes- bers, be appointed, in conjunction with a similar comton and Livingston, a committee on domestic manufac- mittee of the Senate, if the Senate shall appoint such tures,
a committee, for the purpose of respectfully inviting the Messrs. Good, Lawson, Alexander, Wilson, Oweris, President elect, and in the event of his acceptance, esLaporte and M.Keep a committee of accounts.
corting him, as the guest of the people, from Pittsburg Messrs. Duncan, Driesbach, Rankin, Haines, Shendel to Harrisburg, to participate in the anniversary festival Patterson, (Washington,) and leck, a committee on of the 8th of January, 1815. vice and immorality.
The resolution was laid on the table till to-day. Messrs. Roberts, Matheys, Frick, Miller, (Lehigh) Mr. Moore gave notice, that on to morrow he would Doudel, Kreps and Horner, a committee on the militia ask leave to bring in a bill, entitled an act to repeal an system.
act passed at the last session, entitled an act concerning Messrs. Stevens, (Mont.) Miller, (Chester,) Whit- small notes for the payment of money. latch, Black, Stauffer, Byerly and Rankin, a committee Francis R. Shunk was unanimously re-elected clerk, on election districts.
and appointed Thomas J. Gross as his assistant. Messrs. Snyder, Hastings, Riter, Farrell, Horn, Simp- James Smith was re-elected sergeant-at-arins, and Thoson and Forrey, a committee on banks.
mas Wallace, door.keeper. Messrs. Evans,( Fayette) Trimble, Stephens,(Adams) Samuel C. Stambaugh was appointed printer of the Power, Lightner, Banks and Long, a committee on es- Journals in the English language, and of the bills. tates and escheats.
Jacob Baab was elected printer of the Journal in the Messrs. Champneys, Rehrer, Martin, Ilostetter, Dries German language. bach, Frick and Workman, a committee on bridges, and Messrs. Snyder, Champneys, Banks, Workman and state and turnpike roads.
Simpson were appointed a committee to arrange the vaMessrs. Shannon, Hergesheimer, Mʻlieynolds, Has- rious items of the Governor's message. singer, Fuller, Galbraith and Boals, a committee on Mr. Butts presented a petition from inhabitants of corporations.
Bucks and Northampton counties, praying for an approMessrs. Kerr, M‘Sherry, Martin, Bastress, Evans, priation in aid of improving the road across Flint Hill. (Mont.) Hastings and Metzler, a committee on local ap- Referred to the committee on local appropriations. propriations.
Mr. Patterson-4 petitions from inhabitants of Mifflin Messrs. Foulkrod, Fullerman, and Parkhurst, a com- county, praying for the erection of a new county, out of mittee to compare bills, &c.
part of the said county. Referred to Messrs. Patterson, Messrs. Binder, M'Clear and Petriken, a committee Petriken, Black, Buttz and Post. on the library
Mr. Kerr-an act erecting parts of the counties of Messrs. Leliman, Denison, M'Reynolds, Shannon, Washington, Favette, Westmoreland and Allegheny Lawson, Buttz, Moore, Bastress, Patterson, (Alleghe into a separate county, to be called Jackson county. ny) Blair, Galbraith, Morgan and Lightner, a committee on inland navigation and internal improvement.
ELECTORAL COLLEGE. On motion of Mr. Hastings, ordered, that an item of
Agreeably to an act of Assembly, the Electors of the unfinished business relative to an artificial road from
state for President and Vice President of the United Potter's Old Fort in Centre county, to the Juniata turi. States, met on Wednesday last in the senate chamber of pike road in Huntingdon county, be referred to Messrs. Pennsylvania. William Findlay, late Governor of the Hastings, Shannon and Rankin.
state, was appointed president of the college; and on the Thursday, Dec. 4.
votes being countech, it appeared that general Jackson
received the unanimous vote of the college for President Mr. Hastings-a petition froin sundry citizens of this of the United States, after the 4th of March next, having commonwealth, praying for the establishment of a gene- received twenty-eight votes. J. C. Calhoun received ral system of education. Referred to the cominittce on the same number of votes for Vice President. education.
REGISTER OF PENNSYLVANIA.
DEVOTED TO THE PRESERVATION OY EVERY KIND OF USEFUL INFORMATION RESPECTING THE STATE,
EDITED BY SAMUEL HAZARD.
VOL. II.-NO. 23.
PHILADELPHIA, DEC. 20, 1828.
HOUSE OF REFUGE.
spectable position in society, how great a debt of grati
tude dn you owe? Acquit yourselves of some small Address delivered by the Hon. John Sergeant, on Saturday, portion of it by helping your destitute fellow creatures.
29th November, 1828.-(Concluded from p. 351.) Think of the little neglected wanderer; abandoned to The unhappy beings who are thus by the nature of his own weakness, without parental instruction, without our institutions, and for the security of society, placed counsel, almost without a home, and extend to him in a course of training which must inevitably lead to some support, when he is in danger of falling; help to misery and vice, who are hurried, as it were, to matu- provide for him a Refuge, that the blossom of hope, rity of wickedness, often to premature, and sometimes which has lived through poverty and neglected, may to infamous death, are the children of the poor. They not be finally blasted by the impure atmosphere of a are generally neglected and destitute, frequently with jail. You will still be debtors, largely debtors; but out parents or friends to advise or direct them; and there when you are bestowing a parent's benediction upon are not wanting numerous instances in which abandoned the tender objects of your love, the tear of thankful. parents, for their own gratification, direct their children ness and joy that springs from a grateful heart, will not into the paths of vice, by sending them into the streets be the less sweet or pure for a consciousness that we to beg or to steal. There is, besides, a case of by no have done something to impart to others a portion of means rare occurrence, appealing, if possible, still more that comfort which is so freely given to us. powerfully to our sympathy-the case of a widowed
We would remind our fellow citizens, in the next mother, who sees her son rushing upon destruction, and place, that the objection to individual aid applies equalis unable by any authority she can employ, or by any in-ly to every sort of contribution, of time as well as of fluence she can exert, to reclaim him from his evil ways, money; and, indeed, to every kind of exertion. Those or arrest him in his progress to ruin. Where can she who give their labour, give ihat which is as substantia), look for assistance or relief? If the power of the law and as valuable as money. But would it for a moment be interposed, it sends him to jail, where he becomes be insisted, that the faculties of individuals, their time, still more degradea, and is condemned to deeper con- their exertions, and their means, are to be entirely and tamination. The true judgment of a mother's never-exclusively devoted to their own individual concernsdying affection would readily assent to restraint, if ac- that no effort is to be made to devise improvements, no companied with care and instruction, and freed from the contribution of time, or talent, or money, to introduce stigma and the poison of a confinement in prison. But them—that the human intellect is to be bound up in the the jail she regards as an extremity so disastrous, that narrow limits of our own personal affairs, and the feels tears and prayers, and every exertion she can employ, ings of man to be quickened by no generous sympathy are used to avert it; and when at last it comes, it is an for others? Happily, there are very few who practi. overwhelming calamity. Thus is sire doomed to wit. cally adopt this doctrine. In a government like ours, ness the downward course, and final ruin of her child, where the representative is chosen from amongst ourwithout the power to save or to help him, like the poor selves, and is constantly dependent upon public opimother bird, that sees its unfledged brood, which it bas nion, or support, he trust be animated and sustained, in fed from its mouth, and sheltered with its wings, vio- all new undertakings of magnitude, by the expressed lently torn from the nest, and, helpless to preserve them sense of the community, and the assured co-operation of from the destroyer, can do nothing but utier a piercing his fellow citizens. His powers are limited; those of cry of anguish and despair.
individuals are without restriction. This has been the This is no fancy sketch; nor is it drawn from other history of all improvements, and this is the history of all countries, or from other times. More than one unhap- the institutions of humanity which constitute the pride py and anxious mother has already applied to the mana- and the ornament of our city and our state. The enthugers, and found a new hope in the prospect of a Refuge. siasm of private benevolence, guided by individual in
If such be the nature of the institutions and laws, and telligence, has led the way, and the Legislature has such their inadequacy, or worse than inadequacy, in the never been slow, in proper cases, to afford its aid in adcase of juvenile delinquents—if the security of society vancing the work. Look around you in every direcrequires, that without regard to their feebleness, their tion: begin at a remote period; explore the foundationr destitution, their inevitable ignorance, they should be of all those establishments which Philadelphia can exbi. treated as criminals, surely it is a noble charity which bit as “her jewels," and you will find that they were seeks to devise and to execute a plan for extending to laid by the hands of individuals, and in part, or entirely them parental aid, affording them the means of instruc- | built up and sustained by individual contribution. There, tion, and leading them into the ways of industry and in- too, you will find, (its source hidden by time or disnocence-which endeavours to rescue them from the tance,) the beginnings of the reputation of our benefaceffects of their unfortunate condition, ascribing, with tors; there you will discern the means by which the equal justice and humanity, their errors, and even their memory of the dead has come to us embalmed by their vices and their crimes, to the want of that aid which works of beneficence, still fragrant and fresh; and there childhood always requires.
too you will learn how their living followers are to make You, whom the bounty of Providence has blessed themselves worthy to be associated in the remembrance with the means of conducting your children with every of posterity with their illustrious predecessors. What advantage, through the periods of childhood and youth, would Philadelphia have been without her ivstitutions of cultivating their moral and intellectual growth, of of humanity and charity? She would scarcely have deguarding them from the approach of danger, and in die served the title of a civilized or a Christian community. time placing them with strengthoned powers in a re- It may be difficult to draw with precision the line beVol. II.
yond which individuals not to be expected to advance; riod referred to. Tried and untried prisoners, of all where they may, without hesitation, trust enti, ely to the ages and colours, and of both sexes, of every grade of interposition of the public power. There are cases, offence, and of every variety of character, and even the undnubtedly, where the legislature ought to have the poor debtors, who had connnitted no offence at all, exclusive cognizance, and where the charge should fall were thrown into one common herd, in an ill contrived upon the public purse. There are cases too, where building, which retained the abomination of a subterrathe burtben must be borne by individuals. But there neous dungeon for prisoners under sentence of death. are cases where they may most bencficially co-operate, "What a spectacle,” exclaims Mr. Vaix, “must this and iis which it is impossible to determine the exact abode of guilt and wretchedness liave presented" proportion which shall fall upon each. But let us not be well might he ask the question. A den of wild beastsy too anxious on this point. Charity, like mercy, as desperate from confinement, and mad from hunger, twice blessed; it blesseth him that gives, and him that abandoned to the work of mutual destruction, would be takes;" and it is in the order of Providence that this bless- but a faint type of such an assemblage. The brute ing shall never be wanting to him that gives. "le batho obeys his instinct; but to condemn a buman being to an dispersedl,” says the inspired psalmist : "he bath given existence where mere brutal ferocity will assume the to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever; his dominion over liim, is to be accessary to the crime of born shall be exalted with honour.” In the very act of effacing the image of his Maker, and robbing him of charity there is a process of purification in the lcart of the attributes of humanity. Many details will be found the giver, which elevates his feelings and improves his in the pamphilet, which time will not allow to be repeatcharacter. Besides, it is an individual doty, which cd. There is one, however, which is not less curious individuals only can perform. It must be voluntary. than important. A clergyman," who was a member of The moment it becomes compulsory, it is no longer the acting committee, proposed to preach to the prisoncharity. It may benefit "him that takes,” but its virtueers. Ilis efforts were resisted by the keeper; and when (0 him that gives" is gone.
at last by perseverance be gained admission, he found For this particular object, as entitled to individual (on a Sunday) a loaded cannon, with a lighted match care, we bave the countenance of precept and example, beside it, prepared by the keeper, pointed at the priand the encouragement of the success which has follow- soners, and ready to do the work of destruction upon ed exertion in the same career. A litile more than the least commotion. Such were the fears the keeper forty years ago, “the Philadelphia Society for alleviat- felt, or affected to feel, of his inmates. ing the Miscries of Public Prisons," was founded by a It was with the sanction and the approbation of this few of the citizens of Philadelphia; ard that venerable society that the present plan was put forward, as a most man,* whose long life has been devoted to the service material and humane improvement. of his Maker and his fellow' creatures, with exemplary Is it necessary for me to add, as a further motive to inpurity and faithfulness, was appointed to the station of fluence the charitable, that wherever a Refuge lias been president, which he has since occupied without inter established, its support, in whole or in part, bas been ruption, and sull continues to occupy: "When we supplied by the contribution of indlividuals? The Lonconsider,” they say in the preamble to their cojistitution, don Refuge was thus begun, and lias thus been main. "that the obligations of benevolence which are founded tained. In our sister city, which gave us an example of on the precepts and example of the author of Christian- a Refuge in full operation before we had yet moved, the ity, are not cancelled by the follies or crimes of our fel- subscriptions of individuals have not only been larger low creatures; and wbcn we reflect upon the miseries than here, but they have borne a larger proportion to which penury, hunger, cold, unnecessary severity, un- the aid afforded by the state. Shall we be outdone in wholesome apartments and guilt, (the usual attendants charity? They laboured in an untried work; we have of prisons,) involve with them, it becomes us to extend the light of their experience. They persevered in the our compassion to that part of mankind, who are the face of doubt, and their exertions have been crowned subjects of these miseries. By the aids of humanity with success. We have every ground of confidence, their undue and illegal sufferings may be prevented; the and yet the work languishes in our bands. The Legislinks which should bind the whole family of mankind lature has given us a liberal carnest of its intentions. We together, under all circumstances, be preserved unbro- have no reason to fear that it will ever be less disposed ken; and such degrees and modes of punishment may to extend its aid. It is for ourselves, then, to do what is be discovered and suggested, as may, instead of conti- now wanting, in humble reliance that what we do will nuing habits of vice, become the means of restoring our not be done in vain. fellow ereatures to virtue and happiness.” They soon But, the motives which have now becn adverted to, after addressed the public, asking for pecuniary aid, are not the only ones which address themselves to us stating that the funds of the society were contined to an upon this interesting subject. Our interests, as well as annual subscription from each of its members, and a our duties, are deeply concerned in it. The increase of ground rent of fourteen pounds, the donation of John juvenile delinquency has for a long time past occasioned Dickinson, Esq.
the most serious apprehension and regret, wherever inThis lititle band of philanthropists went resolutely to quiry has been made into the state of crime and punishwork, and in the forty years that have elapsed, have ment. From this calamity, we are by no means exempt, persevered unceasingly in their exertions to promote On the 13th of the present month, there were in prison, the humane objects of their association. Their history under conviction, thirty-nine white boys, and twenty; has lately been given to us by Mr. Vaux. It is not too one black, making a total of sixty. Of the untried much to say, that to their labours, under Providence, we boys, we have no account: nor have we any account of are chiefly indebted for an entire revolution in the con- the girls, as they have not been separated from their seduct and management of our prisons: to thein, in a niors in vice. The whole number, however, if ascergreat measure, we owe the credit of having been the tained, would by no means ascertain the extent of the first to introduce the penitentiary system, as well as the evil. The repugnance to prosecuting children, even amelioration of our penal code. If the penitentiary has when they are detected in offence, and the inclination failed of its purpose, from want of accommodation, or of courts and juries to acquit them, out of compassion from other causes, it is to be hoped that the Legislature for their tender years, rather than consign them to the will affard the means of remedying its defects, and of destruction of a prison, leare many at large to pursue giving it a fair and full experiment.
their course of iniquity. The aggregate cannot be conStill, with all its imperfections, our present system of- jectured. J: includes a great variety. Amung the thirtyfers a striking contrast to that which existed at the penine white boy's named in the list from the prison, there
are eleven who are styled by the keeper "good boys," * The Right Rev. Dr. White, Bishop of Pennsylvania from which we may understi.nd that there is nothing in
their dispositions or habits decidedly vicious. With ter them in the fulness of their stature and strength. care and instruction they would probably be reclaimed, She counsels us to eradicate them by culture before and become usefiil members of society. But what is they have struck too deep into the soil, and in their their condition now, and what are their prospects?- place to sow the seeds of wholesonié instruction.Branded with the infamy of a jail- lost to the feeling wherever we succeed, we save a luman being to so. of shame-turned loose upon the world-cut off from ciety, and we disburthen the jail of a permanent tenant. intercourse with the honest part of the community- If, not withistanding our best exertions, some should be without counsel, aid, or instruction, they are forced into lost, still we have the satisfaction of knowing, that but the society of the vicious, and driven to crime for a for those exertions, all would probably have perished. subsistence. They are irretrievably lost, when they To fultil that “obligation of benevolence," which, in Inight have been saved. Rejected by society, excluded the language of the Philadelphia Society for Alleviating froir honest occupation, with the world in hostility a- the Miseries of Public Prisons, is not cancelled by the gainst them, they naturally become enemies of the follies and crimes of our fellow creatures,” especially world, and grow into the most desperate offenders. towards those of them wbose follies, or even crimes,
An intelligent magistrate of England, in a letter re. are the least reprehensible, and to supply that defect in cently published, has some very striking remarks on our criminal institutions which experience has shown to this point. They are entitled to great attention, be contribute to the increase of crime, rather than to its cause they are founded on actual observation, made in prevention, is the design of the House of Refuge. the course of a long experience. "Early imprisonment, It imposes restraint, for restraint is necessary no lesa therefore," he says, “is the great and primary cause for the good of the subject, than for the security of so. from which crime originates. From this source most of ciety. But it inflicts no punishment; it affixes no badge the evils flow which affect the youthful offender, and at of disgrace; it stamps no degradation; it regards its inthe earliest age lead him into those paths of vice, from mates as unfortunate children, exposed in their weak. which afterwards there is no escape; from which the ness, without support, and bowed down by the storms light of hope is almost excluded, and where the tears of and temptations of life, but capable of being restored repentance are generally disregarded. Whatever may to uprightness by steady treatment and judicious care. have been his first propensities at his first commitment, Upon this simple and humane basis, all the regulations he invariably becomes worse and worse, and leaves his of the House are framed. The general object is, to prison fully instructed in all the mysteries of crime. You impart to the inmates religious and moral instruction; will find the still lingering blush of slame quickly give to form them to useful and orderly habits; to furnish way to the stare of habitually profligate associates; and them with wholesome occupation; and at a suitable age, you will hardly recognise in the familiar boldness of the if they prove themselves worthy, to bind them as apfelon, the distressed and desponding novice in his pro- prentices to some reputable employment, so that they fession. To him to return is as fatal as to proceed; he may be enabled to earn an honest livelihood, and main. is impelled onwards by every impulse which bad exam- tam an honest station in society. ple, bad company, and the scofts of the world have rais- It affords me sincere satisfaction to be able to say, and ed in him; till at last he is driven down the gulf, which to the managers it affords the most confident hope, that has so long vawned to entomb its living victim of des- the plan has proved eminently successful. So long truction.” (Sir Eardly Wilmot's letter.)
ago as in the year 1819, Mr. Hoare, in his examination In the sixth report of the committee of the Prison before a committee of the House of Commons, made Society of London, it is remarked, that “Many hundreds this statement:—“In the different prisons I have visited, of these lads (committed) have either no parents, or the reformation of the boys is generally considered as have been deserted by them. Thus abandoned, they hopeless; in the Refuge we generally succeed. The have made fellowship with others alike friendless, con- classification is not so perfect as I think desirable, but tracted a desire for wandering, and an aversion to re- the funds of the society are very low, and we are oblistraint; they live from day to day by preying on the pro-ged to do the best we can.” perty of others; at night they usually slcep in the open The Warwick county Asylum (an imperfect Refuge, air. Their minds are in a state of the darkest ignorance, it would seem, where boys were generally received only and the grossest vice. They are very frequently brought after conviction, and consequently after the contaminaup before the magistrates for petty offences. They are tion of a prison,) established in 1818, and supported committed for short periods; and when liberated, are solely by voluntary contributions, is stated to have been very soon again in prison. They continue pilfering, of infinite benefit. Out of eighty-one boys, thirty-nine increasing in guilt as they advance in year's, until their have been ascertained to have been permanently reformcareer is terminated by transportation or death.” And ed; twenty-one have been since tried at Warwick, and in a note it is stated, that “one boy, but nine years of sixteen reinain. Boys, says Sir Eardly Wilmot, have age, who has been under the notice of the committee, occasionally been received into the Asylum without had been eighteen times committed to the different pri- being tried and convicted; and I have it on the best au: sons in the metropolis.”
thority to say that the facility of reform is incalculably It is needless to dwell upon the facts which have been greater with such boys than with convicted felons, stated. They speak a language too plain to be misun- In the London Refuge, and in the Refuge of New derstood, and addressing itself to every thinking mind York, a friend who has accurarely examined the state. with irresistible force. Do you desire that crime should ments, informs me that a permanent reform bas been efincrease, that criminals should be multiplied, and be- fected in the proportion of nine out of ten.. The cases come more hardened and dangerous? Do you wish that detailed are numerous and interesting, and it is desirable your security from depredation should be every day ren. that they should be extensively known, as they present dered more precarious, and the expense of providing a most powerful argument in favour of the plan. guards for your property and pence, be constantly aug- There is reason to believe that a solution has thus been mented? Are you willing that the generation which is found for a difficult and afticting problem. The public rising, and of which your own children form a part, security may be reconciled with a just and humane atshould be exposed to the evils that have just been exhi- tention to the circumstances of unfortunate youth. Our bited? You cannot be. The dictates of prudence, as feelings may be spared the dreadful sacrifice of juvewell as the suggestions of charity ar:d mercy, say, No. nile victims, which existing laws and institutions have While compassion is'pleading to the heart for the friend. demanded-prosecutors, magistrates, courts, and juries, less children of poverty and want, wisdom, speaking to may be relieved from the painful struggle between their the understanding, is telling us to beware how we en duty and their strong inclination—the appalling increase courage or permit the growth of ruffian and lawless of juvenile delinquency be checked—the quantity of propensities, lest, by and by, we should have to encoun-crime be diminished-and the seeds of vice, which are