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might to him seem proper for having com- Majesty's subjects to a free trade, and the mitted an extraordinary insult and out- extension of an honourable, just and legitirage on the privilege of parliament. mate commerce, as amongst the first and
The Order for the attendance of Hind most important objects of legislative reguson and Mr. Campbell was then made out. lation; and praying, that the House will
be pleased to take this subject into their PETITION FROM THE MERCHANTS, &c. most serious consideration, and that they or LIVERPOOL RESPECTING THE East In will, at the earliest opportunity, adopt DIA COMPANY's Charter.] General Tarle. such measures for abolishing the commerton presented a Petition from the merchants, cial monopoly of the East India Company, ship owners, tradesmen, avd other inhabit. as to the wisdom and justice of parliament ants of the town of Liverpool,
may seem most expedient.” " That the Petitioners humbly beg leave On the motion that the Petition be to represent to the House, that by various brought up, charters granted from time to time to the Mr. Creevey did not rise to oppose it. East India Company, the Petitioners have On the contrary, he should be glad to see for a long series of years been restricted it on the table. He merely rose to correct in carrying on trade, as well with the ex- a misrepresentation of the hon. general's, tensive possessions of the company in the with respect to the actual situation of the East Indies, as with the whole of the people of the town of Liverpool, and to islands and territories in Africa and Asia, maintain that the statement which he had from the Cape of Good Hope to the straits originally made of their distresses, was of Magellan, and have thus, as the Peti- perfectly correct. He had stated, and he tioners humbly conceive, not only been now repeated it, that in the course of one prevented from exerting their mercantile month only, the number of poor had inskill and industry, and employing their creased from 8,000 to 15,000 persons. So capital in a manner the most advantageous far from his account being overstated, he to their country and to themselves, but was, from subsequent information, more have been deprived of those privileges convinced than ever of his own correct, which they humbly presume are the com- ness and of the decay of trade in that town, mon birth-right of all his Majesty's sub. It was most extraordinary to him how jects, the right of carrying on a free trade any gentleman could wish to deceive the to all parts of the British empire and other House, when it was evident that, as he countries in amity with the United King- had before said, the ships were dismasted, dom, subject only to such general regula- riggers and carpenters out of employ, and tions of trade as the policy of this country the general appearance of the town such may require, or as may be necessary for as to satisfy any person of the distresses maintaining the relations of these realms under which the inhabitants laboured. with foreign states, and securing to govern. The absence of the American trade, which ment those revenues which may be requi- constituted one of the chief props of the site for its support; and that the Petition- town, had occasioned this decay, which ers further beg leave humbly to state to the was felt in Chester and Manchester; also, House, that they cannot but regard all in the falling off of the exports of salt and monopolies which prohibit the general goods of various descriptions. To shew body of the people from carrying on trade the vast decrease in the trade, he had a with any other country, and in particular document from the customs which stated the monopoly of the East India Company, tbe exports for the last two years for that as highly injurious to the general interests town. In the year preceding the last, the of this country at large, and as greatly amount was 2,676,0001. In the last year discouraging that commercial spirit, which, 1,770,0001. being a deficiency of about from the nature and local situation of these 900,0001. between the two years ending islands, is indispensable to their prospe- the 5th Jan. Jast. In addition to the disrity, and upon which their security at this tress occasioned by the absence of trade, moment essentially depends : and that there were distresses of another kind conthe Petitioners having therefore assembled nected with the collection of the taxes. together in a general meeting, have re. He understood that an attorney of the solved to appeal for a redress of this their town, perhaps not the most eminent in his grievance to the House, in the humble, profession, finding business not coming in, but confident hope, that they will consider had made application to the Chancellor of the protection of the equal rights of his the Exchequer, and got converted into an
inspector of the district. In this new cha- hon. friend's absence, and he would refer racter he suggested to his right hon.friend, to it again if it was the wish of the House, as his fellow townsmen would not employ (a cry of read! read !) The hon. generni him, that the revenue would be greatly then read this Report, which we underimproved by surcharging them on their stood to come from the corporation of assessments generally. The consequence Liverpool; the substance of which was to of these surcharges was a general manifes- the following effect: That from the extentation of discontent throughout the town, sive docks constructing at Liverpool, a and an alarm among the collectors of number of labourers had been invited taxes. The surveyor of the district find from Ireland and Wales ; but the funds ing he could not discharge the trust re- for the construction of the works having posed in him faithfully under the new in- fallen short, a number of them had been spector, resigned his office, and others thrown out of employment, which gave were about to follow, or had followed his rise to the establishment of a soup comexample. This attorney perhaps had re- mittee for their relief. The Committee had, ceived his appointment in consequence of however, since found that though such having been a client of the right hon. gen. numbers had at first received this assistleman, at a period of bis life when he fol. ance, there were never more than between lowed the profession of the law, and there. 3 and 4,000 who really wanted it.
At fore gratitude might have led to the ap. present, the labourers on the docks had 3s. pointment. At any rate, it was not to be a day; and when some gentlemen wanted endured that men should be induced by to employ some of the hands in country such appointments to become informers labour in the neighbourhood, they could against their neighbours and fellow-towns- hardly procure them. The report then men.
went on to state, that there was scarcely a Mr. Rose had no doubt, that Liverpool British ship out of employment in the felt considerable distress in common with port of Liverpool, nor a ship-carpenter out other commercial towns throughout the of employment who was worth it. kingdom. But the statements of the bon. General Gascoyne conceived the best gentleman appeared to him extremely mode of judging of the state of the town, loose, founded mostly upon hearsay, and would be to take the medium between the greatly exaggerated; for he had under- two accounts; most certainly there had stood from unquestionable authority, that been a considerable diminution in the the persons reported to be receiving cha- trade. It had been stated by his hon. rity, were not receiving parochial aid, but friend, on a former occasion, that there merely that kind of assistance furnished by were 56 ships unemployed: not one half what was called a soup committee. He of that number, however, were for sale. was also enabled to state, that three or four When it was recollected that three-fourths years ago, belween 7 and 8,000 persons of the trade of Liverpool was to America, more than the number already mentioned, could it be thought extraordinary that had received similar assistance. As to there was a stagnation ? He trusted that the number of ships for sale, he had been the inconvenience would be of a temporary informed from good authority, that the nature only; the chief cause of the diswhole number of ships lying unemployed tress arose from the depression of the coloin the harbour of Liverpool, did not ex- nial trade. ceed 24, and of these, some were just re- Mr. Baring was not disposed to place turned from their voyages, and others much reliance on the statement read by were under repair. Neither was the Salt the hon. general; for it was well known, trade entirely gone, as the hon. gentleman that in all the petty corporate towns of had asserted; and upon the whole the de- the kingdom, the mayor and corporation cay of commerce in Liverpool was less were always eager, and mostly interested considerable than might be expected, in supporting the measures of the minister considering that it was the great mart for of the day, and were ready to proclaim the American trade.
them as the best possible for the interests General Tarleton said, that having re- l of the country. But he could not help ceived a representation from a number of remarking, the great injury that must rehis constituents, on the subject of the state- sult from misrepresentations of topics of ment some time ago made by his hon. this nature, and from statements of the friend (Mr. Creevey), he had read it to the flourishing state of our commerce, when House, on a former night, though in his the fact was notorious
the reverse. If (VOL. XXII.)
the right hon. gentleman opposite, by that the shipping in the ports of London whom it was the misfortune of the country was so. The transports had increased to be ruled, was really so weak as to be- from 19 to 23s. per ton. He believed he lieve the report of the mayor and aldermen was correct in that statement; sure he of corporate towns, and to be guided by was that the price of transports was conthem in forming his opinions, there was siderably more than in former years. As really very little chance of any relief to the trade with France, he had stated being afforded to the distressed commerce that he had reason to believe that some of the country. The American trade was trade would be opened, but to what exessentially destroyed, and whether we had tent he could not tell, nor indeed was the an equivalent, though it had been hinted subject a fit one to discuss now. that we had, was a question which he Mr. Baring. If the right bon. gentlewould not now' discuss. As to the ship- man will enquire at the Transport Board, ping interest in general, if the right hon. he will find himself mistaken as to the price gentleman would not listen merely to in- of transport tonnage. terested people, who told him that his sys- Mr. Rose replied, that he had enquired, tem was the wisest and best of systems, he and the hon. gentleman would find himself would learn that the shipping trade was entirely mistaken in his statement. at present a losing concern, not only in The Chancellor of the Exchequer conceived Liverpool, but in London also.' The House, the House would not think he acted corhowever, had been led to expect, that an rectly, were he to allow the observations equivalent for the defalcation of so many of the hon. gentleman (Mr. Creevey) 10 branches of our commerce would be ob-pass unnoticed. The tone and manner of tained, and a right hon. gentleman had the hon. gentleman, when talking of the hinted, that a great trade was likely to be appointment of the District Inspector of opened with France, by means of licences. Liverpool, must have impressed on the Now, the conditions on which these licences House an opinion that he felt most warmly were to be granted, he understood to be for some old client, as the hon. gentleman these : that we were to import French was pleased to term this surveyor, to whom laces, lawns, cambrics, linens, and jewel- he (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) had lery in French ships, or at least in ships owed a good turn for former favours, and belonging to countries under the power therefore thought the best thing that could of France; and in return for these goods be done for old friendship was to get him we were merely to export colonial produce to surcharge his fellow townsmen, for at the rate of 5l. per ton. So that for the which purpose he had appointed him to a purpose of relieving and encouraging our situation in which he might carry his obmanufacturers, were to introduce ject into effect. So the hon. gentleman French laces, lawns, linens, &c. to enter wished the House to understand. It apinto competition with our own articles of peared from the statement of the hon. genthe same description. There was also tleman, that this old client and new prothis gross inequality, that by these licences tégé, so anxious to carry on his purpose, the French would be enabled to export had under him a person of very delicate goods of the value of 3 or 4,000l. per ton, nerves, who, not being able to follow his while we only exported to the value of 51. superior officer in his duties, had thought in return. How could a trade of this sort proper to resign. Now, with respect to be justified ? And, indeed, when talking this attorney and client, he had no knowof it to some most strenuous supporters of ledge whatever, but he did recollect someministers, they seemed completely stag. thing of the gentleman under him of deligered by the proposition. On the subject cate nerves-the same, he supposed, from of the collection of taxes, he differed from whom the hon. gentleman had collected his hon. friend (Mr. Creevey) and was ra- his correct information-who had been ther disposed to give ministers credit for called upon to account for some miscon exacting them more equally in places duct, and this call had so alarmed him, where too great lenity had been previously that he had thought it better to resign.shewn. Il was the duty of the govern. He did recollect ihat another person was ment to take care that the burthens of the appointed upon the recommendation of Mr. country should be equally borne.
Lowndes, and that person, he imagined, Mr. Rose, in explanation, denied that was the old client spoken of, but of whom he stated that the shipping of Liverpool he had not the most distant recollection. was in a prosperous state, nor had be said Now, it would become the hon. gentleman,
before he roundly asserted any thing for proposition on the subject of the trade with fact, a little to suspect the accuracy of his India. informant, especially when that informant
The Petition was then ordered to lio was a discarded surveyor. If he had made a bargain with an old client, as was
upon insinuated, would not the hon. gentleman
PETITION FROM THE CORPORATION OF have acted more fairly, if he had made it
LIVERPOOL RESPECTING the subject of a grave charge against him
THE East INDIA for an act, as unworthy a one as could be then presented a Petition from the mayor,
COMPANY'S CHAITER.] General Tarleton well imagined? With respect to sur bailinis and burgesses of the town of Liver
? charges generally, there was no intention of making any such agreement, and till the pool, in common council assembled, setpersons making surcharges were examined, ting forth, it was the greatest assumption which the “ That the Petitioners conceive that the hon. gentleman could take upon himself subjects of these realms possess an inherent to suppose they were wrong. Was it not right to a free intercourse of trade with all right that persons assessed should pay other nations and countries in amity with their just proportion to the expence of the this, subject only to such regulations as state; and therefore if they kept back, may be necessary for preserving a good was it not equitable too, that they should understanding with those countries, and be charged to the extent of their liability for securing to our own the revenues deto pay? As to the general question now rivable from such intercourse; and that before the House, he would only add, that the monopoly of the East India Company, if it was injurious to deceive the country however expedient or necessary at the by false representations of the flourishing period of their first charter, is, as the Pestate of its commerce, it was equally in titioners humbly conceive, in the present jurious, amidst the great interests which state of commerce and of the world, no were at stake, and the great exertions longer so; and it is, moreover, inconsiste which were necessary to be made, to ent with those principles which are unidepress the spirits of the people by ex-versally admitted to be essential to the aggerated statements of commercial dis. prosperity of commerce; and that every tress.
other nation of Europe being, by the signal Mr. Creevey denied, in explanation, that success of his Majesty's arms, deprived of he had received his information from any all territory and influence in the East Indischarged officer.
dies, as well as of all means of annoyance The Chancellor of the Exchequer would to the vavigation of those seas, an ample merely repeat, that the information was field is now open for the exertion of Briquite new to him, of any person having tish skill and enterprize, and for the investe been appointed to surcharge his neigh- ment of that capital, which is rendered in a bours in Liverpool.
great measure useless, in those channels of The Petition was then brought up and trade where it has been beretofore emread. On the motion for its being laid on ployed; and that the Petitioners, as the the table,
guardians of the interests of the town of Mr. Baring repeated bis wish that the Liverpool, while they lament the distressright hon. gentleman opposite would take ing suspension of its commerce at this this opportunity of explaining the condi- juncture, cannot but indulge a sanguine tions of the proposed licences. He was hope that the era is arrived which presents also anxious io know whether the Chan. to the merchants and traders of Liverpool, cellor of the Exchequer intended to bring in common with those of every part of the forward this year any proposition on the British empire, new and brighter prossubject of the East India Company's pects, in the participation of a traffic from Charter.
which they have been hitherto excluded ; Mr. Rose declined introducing a subject and that the Petitioners disclaim any wish 50 extraneous to the present petition, but to interfere with the rights of the East was ready to meet any discussion upon it India Company, which they apprehend that the hon. gentleman might propose. may be maintained inviolate, without the
The Chancellor of the Erchequer, in reply continuation of a system that infringes the to the question of the right hon. gentle privileges of others ; and the Petitioners man, wished to give notice, that shortly therefore, reposing with entire contidence after the recess he should bring forward a in the wisdom and justice of the House,
humbly entreat that they will be pleased to enquired if the right hon. gentleman the adopt such measures as may secure to the Secretary of State for the Home Departmerchants of the port of Liverpool the ad- ment, would have any objection to provantages of a free trade beyond the Cape duce the documents on which he founded of Good Hope."
his assertion, that persons educated at the Ordered to lie upon the table.
college of Maynooth had employed undue
means to make proselytes, particularly in PETITION OF THE Trustees OF THE the north of Ireland, to the Roman Catholic LIVERPOOL DOCKS RESPECTING THE East persuasion ? INDIA COMPANY'S CHARTER.) General Mr. Secretary Ryder answered, that Tarleton also presented a Petition from the the expression he had employed in the Trustees of the Liverpool Docks, setting debate upon this subject had been misforth,
understood and misrepresented. He had “ That the port of Liverpool has, in the not stated, that he had any reason to course of little more than a century, from believe that persons educated at Mayits peculiar local advantages, and by the nooth had employed any undue means to enterprising spirit of its inhabitants, raised propagate their religion. He had no heitself from the situation of a humble fish. sitation in repeating what he had said ing town, to the distinguished rank and upon that occasion, which was, that he importance of the second port in the wished the institution had never existed, kingdom ; and that the Petitioners, whose as it had afforded the means of spreading province it is to provide and maintain the Catholicism in districts where the Protese requisite accommodation for the shipping tant faith had before been prevalent. resorting to that port, have at various times, this account he had resisted the extension under the authority of the legislature, and of the grant. as the increase of the trade demanded, Sir J. Newport added, that he had taken erected extensive docks, and other conve- down the words employed by the right niencies for the shipping interests of the hon. gentleman at the time, and they were, town; and that, urged by the merchants " that individuals educated at the college at large, two years ago, when their trade of Maynooth had made use of the facili. was in great prosperity, the Petitioners ties they there obtained to propagate by sought for and obtained, during the last undue means the Catholic religion.” session of parliament, powers for the fur- The Speaker observed, that it was conther improvement of the port ; and that, trary to order for any member to refer to in consideration not only of the existing expressions employed by any member on want of accommodation in the docks for a former debate, as a ground for calling general purposes, but anticipating also the for documents to prove the veracity or period when the rights of the merchants falsity of the assertion. and traders of Liverpool, in common with Sir J. Newport then gave notice, that toall others his Majesty's subjects, to a free morrow he would move for any documents trade with the East Indies, would be re- on which the right hon. gentleman bad cognized, the Petitioners have commenced founded his assertion. various works, upon an extensive scale, calculated to meet the vast accession of COLONEL M MAHON'S APPOINTMENT.) trade which, as they humbly conceive, The Hon. J. W. Ward observed, that by the would be the result of such a system; Gazette it appeared, that colonel M‘Maand the Petitioners, therefore, anxious for hon had been appointed to the office of the prosperity of the important trusts Keeper of the Privy Purse and Private Secommitted to them, and confiding in the cretary to the Prince Regent. He wished justice of the House, most bumbly intreat to be informed by the right hon. gentlethat they will adopt such measures as to man opposite, what salary was attached to their wisdom shall seem meet, for obtain these places, and what were the duties being to the port of Liverpool, as well as the longing to them, as he was completely rest of the united kingdom, a participa- ignorant upon the subject, not knowing tion of the trade with our Eastern posses. until now that any such situation as Prisions, hitherto solely enjoyed by the East vate Secretary to the Regent existed ? India Company."
The Chancellor of the Exchequer admitted
the fact of the appointment. He presumed
that the hon. member was not ignorant Maynooth COLLEGE.] Sir J. Neuport that colonel Taylor had held the same