Page images

according to most of the English witnesses, 1 hension which the soldiers might fairly enand some of the American, was making a tertain, owing to the numbers and conduct noise, ballooing, insulting, and provoking, of the prisoners, that this firing to a certain and daring the military to fire; and, ac extent, was justifiable, in a military point of cording to the evidence of several of the view, in order to intimnidate the prisoners, soldiers and some others, was pelting the and compel them thereby to desist from all. Yilitary with large stones, by which some acts of violence, and to retire as they were of them were actually struck. This circum- ordered, from a situation in which the restance is, however, denied by many of the sponsibility of the agents, and the military, American witnesses; and sone of the Eng. could not permit them witla s fety to remain. lish, upon having the question put to them, From the fact of the crowd being so close, stated, they saw no stones thrown previously and the firing at first being attended with to the firing, although their situation at the very little injury, it appears probable that a time was such as to enable them to see most large proportion of the inuskets were, as of the other proceedings in the square. stated by one or two of the witnesses, le

Under these circumstances the firing velled over the heads of the prisoners ; a commenced. With regard to any order circumstance in some respects to be lamenthaving been given to fire, the evidence is ed, as it induced them to renew their insults. very contradictory. Several of the Ameri- to the soldiery, which produced a repetition cans swear positively, that Captain Short of the firing in a manner much more deland gare that order; but the manner instructive. The firing in the square having which, from the confusion of the moment, continued for some time, by which several they describe this part of the transaction, is of the prisoners sustained injuries, the so different in its details, that it is very dif- greater part of them appear to have been ficult to reconcile their testimony. Many running back, with the vimost precipitation, of the soldiers and other English witnesses and confusion, to their respective prisons, heard the word given by some one; but no and the cause for further firing seems at: one of them can swear it was by Captain this period to have ceased. It appears, acShortland, or by any one in particular, and cordingly, that Captain Shortland was in some, amongst who is the officer com- the market-square, exerting himself and, manding the guard, think, if Captain Short- giving orders to that effect, and that Lieuland had given such an order, that they tenait Fortve had succeeded in stopping must have leard it, which they did not. In the fire of his part of the guard. addition to this, Captain Shortland denies Under these circumstances, it is very difthe fact; and from the situation in which ficult to find any justification for the conhe appears to have been placed at the time, tinuance and renewal of the firing, which even according to the American witnesses, certainly took place both in the prison yards in front of the soldiers, it may appear some.

and elsewhere: though we have some evi. what improbable that he should then have dence of subsequent provocation given to, given such an order. But, however, it may the military, and resistance to the turnkeys remain a matter of doube whether the firing in shutting the prisons, and of stones being first began in the square by order, or was a thrown ou: from within the prison doors, spontaneous act of the soldiers themselves, The subsequen: firing rather appears to have it seemed clear that it was continued and arisen from individual irritation and exasrenewed, both there and elsewhere, without peration on the part of the soldiers who folorders; and that on the platforms, and in lowed the prisoners into their yards, and several places about the prison, it was cer. from ibe absence of nearly all the officers tainly commenced without any authority who might have restrained it; as well as The fact of an order having been given at from the great difficulty of putting an end first, provided the firing was, under exist to a firing when once commenced under ing circumstances, justifiable, does not such circumsiances.

Captain Shortland pear very material in any other point of was from this time busily occupied with the view than as shewing a want of self-posses- turnkeys in the square, receiving and taking sinn and discipline in the troops, if they care of the wounded. Ensign White reshould have fired without order.

mained with his guard at the breach, and With regard to the above important con- Lieutenants Avelyne and Fortye, the only sideration, of whether the firing was justisia- other subalterns known to have been preble or not, we are of opinion, under all the sent, continued in the square with the main circumstances of the case, from the apple.' bodies of their respective guàrds. The time


of the day, which was the officers dinner | time to the firing of any particular indivi. hour, will in some measure explain this, as dual, but without success; and all hopes of it caused the absence of every officer from bringing the offenders to punishment should the prison whose presence was not indispensa seen to be at an end. ble there--and this circumstance, which In conclusion, we, the undersigned, have has been urged as an argument to prove the only to add, that whilst we lament, as we do intention of the prisoners to take this oppor.most deeply, the unfortunate transaction? tunity to escape, tended to increase the con- which has been the subject of this inquiry, fusion, and to prevent those great exertions we find ourselves totally unable to suggest being made which might perhaps have ob. any steps to be taken as to those parts of it viated a portion, at least, of the mischief | which seem most to call for redress and which ensued. At the same time that the punishment. firing was going on in the square, a cross fire was also kept up fron several of the


FRANCIS SEYMOUR LARPENT. platforms on the walls round the prison where the sentries stand, by straggling parties of soldiers, who run up there for

Plymouth, April 20, 1815. that purpose. As far as this fire was di.


pursuance of instructions re. rected to disperse the men assembled round' ceived from Messrs. Clay and Gallatio, I the breach, for whică purpose it was most have now the honour to transmit to you the effectual, it seems to stand upon the same report prepared by Mr. Larpent and myself ground as that in the first instance in the on belialf of our respective Governments, in square. But that part which it is positively relation to the unfortunate transactions at sworn was directed against straggling parties Dartmoor prison of war, on the 6th of the of prisoners running about the yards, and present month. Considering it of much endeavouring to enter in the few doors importance that the report, whatever it which the turnkeys, according to their usual might be, should go forth under our joint practice, had left open, does seem, as stated, signatures, I have forborne to press some of to have been wholly without object or ex. the points which it involves, as far as other. cuse, and to have been a wanton attack upon wise I might have done, and it therefore the lives of defenceless, and at that time, may not be improper in this letter to enter uuoffending individuals.' In the same, or into some little explanation of such parts of even more severe terms, we must remark the report. Although it does appear that a upon what was proved as to the firing into part of the prisoners were on that evening the door ways of the prisons, more particu- in such a state, and under such circumJarly into that of No. 3 prison, at a time stances, as to have justified, in the view when the inen were in crowds at the entrance. which the commander of the depot could From the position of the prison and of the not but take of it, the intervention of the divor, and from the marks of the balls which military force, and even, in a strict sepse, were pointed out to us, as well as from the the first use of fire arms, yet I cannot but evidence, it was clear this firing must bave express it as my set:led opinion, that by proceeded froni soldiers a very few feet from conduct a litilc more temporising, this the door way, and although it was certainly dreadful alternative of firing upon unarmed sivorn that the prisoners were at the time of prisovers might have been avoided. Yet as part of the firing at least continuing to in- this opinion has been the result of subsesult and occasionally to throw stones at the queut examination, and after having ac. soldiers, and ihat they were standing in the quired a knowledge of the comparatively way of, and impeding the turnkey, who barmless state of the prisoners, it may be was there for the purpose of closing the but fair to consider, whether in such a mo. door, yet still there was 'nothing staled ment of confusion and alarm, as that appears which could in our view at all justify such to have been, the officer commanding could excessively harsh and severe treatment of have fairly estimated his danger, or have helpless and unarmed prisoners when all measured out with precision the extent and idea of escape was at an end. Under these nature of the force necessary to guard impressions, we used every endeavour to as- against it. But when the firing became gecertain if there was the least prospect of veral, as it afterwards appears io have done, identifying any of the soldiers who had been and caught with electric rapidity from the gulty of the particular outrages here alluded square to the platforms, there is no plca nor 10, or of tracing any particular death at that shadow of excuse for it, except in the per.

sonal exasperation of the soldiery, nor for, in its prosecution, as well by the military the more deliberate, and therefore more un- officers cominanding here and at the prison, justifiable, firing, wbich took place ioto as by the Magistrates in the vicinity. I three of the prisons, Nos. 1, 3, and 4, but have the honour to be, with much respect, more particularly into No. 3, after the pri. your most obedient humble servant, soners had retired into them, and there was

(Signed) CHARLES KING. no longer any pretence of apprehensions as to their escape.. Upon this ground, as you,

His Excellency J. Q. Adamus, &c. Sir, will perceive by the report, Mr: Larpent and myself had no difference of opinion;

London, April 18, 1815. and I am fully persuaded that my own re- SIR, -Atihe request of Lord (asilereagh, gret was not greater than his, at perceiving we have had interviews with him and Mr. how hopeless would be the attempt to trace Goulburn, on the subject of the transportato any individuals of the military these out. tion of the American prisoners now in this sageous proceedings. As to whether the country, to the United States, and of the order to fire came from Captain Shortland, late unfortunate event at the depot of Darl. I yet confess myself unable to form any sa- moor. On the first subject, we agreed to tisfactory opinion, though, perhaps, the bias advise your acceptance of the proposition of of my mind is, that he did give such an Lord Castlereagh, to transport the prisoners order. But his anxiety and exertions to at the joint expence of the two countries, stop it after it had continued for some little reserving the construction of the articles of time are fully proved, and his general con-| the treaty, which provides for the mutual duct previous to this occurrence, as far as restoration of prisoners, for future adjusto we could with propriety enter into such de- ment. It was stated by us, and was so untails, appears to have been characterised derstood, that the joint expence, thus to be with tenderness, and even kindness, in the incurred, is to coinprehend as well the relight in which he stood towards the prison quisite tonnage, as the subsistence of the ers,

On the subject of any complaints prisoners; and moreover, that measures of against their own Government existing precaution should be adopted relative to the among the prisoners, it was invariably an health and conduct of the prisoners, similar swered to several distinct questions put by to those which had takev place in America. me on that head, that none whatsoever ex: The detail of this arrangement, if you conisted or had been expressed by them, al- cur with us as to the expediency of making though they confessed themselves to enter-it, are left to you to setile with the proper taiu some animosity against Mr. Beasley, to British authority. On the other subject, as whom they attributed their detention in this a statement of the transaction has been ricountry, with what justice, you, Sir, will ceived from the American prisoners, difbe better able to judge. They made no fering very materially in fact from that complaint whatsoever as to their provisions which had resulted from an inquiry insti.

and general mode of living and treatment tuted by the Port Admiral, it has been 'ja the prison. I have transmitted to Mr. thought advisable that some means should Beasley a list of the killed and wounded on

be devised of procuring information as 10 this melancholy occasion, with a request the real state of the case, in order, on the that he would forward it to the United one hand, to shew that there had not beca States for the information of their friends at any wanton or iniproper sacrifice of the home, and I am pleased to have it in my lives of American citizens; or, on the power to say, that the wounded are for the orber, to enable the British Government most part doing well. I have also enclosed to punish their civil or military officers, to Mr. Beasley the notes taken by me of the if it should appear that they have resorted evidence adduced before us, with a request to measures of extreme severity without that he would have them fairly copied; as necessity, or with too much precipitation. also a copy of the depositions taken before Lord Castlereagh proposed that the enquiry the Coroner, and desired him to submit should be a joint one, conducted by a Comthem to you when in order. I cannot con missioner selected by each Governmeni. clude, Sir, without expressing my high sense and we bave thought such an enquiry of the impartiality and manly fairness with niost likely to produce an impartial and sawhich ibis enquiry has been conducted on tisfactory result. We presume that you the part of Mr. Larpent, nor without men- will have too much occupation on the first tioning that every facility was afforded 10 us subject and the other incidental duties of


your office, to attend to this enquiry in per- | Plenipotentiary of the United States at this ·

On that supposition we have stated to Court, and to the British Governnient. The the British government that we should re- mode of executing this service must be left commend to you the selection of Charles to the discretion of Mr. King and his cola Kins, Esq. as a fit person to conduct it in league. If they can agree upon a narrative behalf of the American government. If of the facts, after having heard the evidence, Mr. King will undertake the business, he it will be better than reporting the whole will förthwith proceed to Dartmoor, and in inass of testimony in detail, which they may conjunction with the British Commissioner, perhaps find it necessary to do, if they canwho ngay be appointed on the occasion, will not come to such an agreement.--- We are, examine the persons concerned, and such Sir, your obedient humble servants, other evidence as may be thought necessary, (Signed) H. CLAY. and make a joint report upon the facts of

ALBERT GALLATIN. the case to John Q. Adams, Esq. Minister R. G. Beasley, Esq.

PRICES CURRENT in London; Prices of FUNDS in England and

France; and. Number of BANKRUPTCIES in Great Britain, during the last week.

BREAD.—The Quartern Loaf, weigbing 41b. 507. 8drams, 11 d.
WHEAT.-The Winchester Bushel, or 8 gallons (corn and beer measrre), taken on an average of

all the prices at Mark Lane Market, 88. 31. MEAT.-The average wholesale price per Pound weight, al Smithfield Market, where the skin and

otfal are not reckoned at any thing in the price.---Beef, 64d; Mutton, 6 d. : Veal, 81; Pork, 6d ;

Lamb, 8.10. WOOL. --Vigonia, 16s.; Portugal, 35. ; Spanish Lamb, 9. 30.; Leonosa, 75.3). ; Segovia, 5s. 9d. ;

Seville, 4s. 611. ;-- This wool is washed and pickco.Wool Imported last week: From Ger.

many, 28,800lbs.--From Russia, 141,000lbs. BULLION.-Gold in bars, 4498 per ounce.-New Dollars, 5s. 7d, each.- Silver in bars, none.

N. B. These are the prices in Bank of England paper.--In gold coin of the English Mint, an ounce of gold in bars is worth 31. 178. 1091.-Standarul Silver in bars, in the coin of the Euglish Mint, is worth 3*. 2d. an ource. In the same coin a Spanish Dollar is worth 4s, 60,

ENGLISH FUNDS — The price of the Three Per Ceutum Consolidated Annuities, in Bank Pa

per; 567.

FRENCH FUNDS.— The price of the Five Per Cents, in gold and silver money ; 62.
BANKRUPTCIES.-Number, during the last week, published in the London Gazette, 27.

Printed and Published by G. Houston, No. 192, Strand; where all Communicațions addressed to

the Editor, are requested to be forwardeda

[ocr errors]

Vol. XXVIII. No. 10.] LONDON, SATURDAY, SEPT. 9, 1815. [Price 1s. Įd.





call on you and the rest of the Ministers, TO LORD CASTLEREAGH.'

to cause America to be deluged in blood, On the Nsassacre of the French Protest

for the security of England. They even

already, bewail the dismantling of ants by the Royal and Christian Army."

our fleet, while the American States, as they say, have formed the “ malignant

design” of building each a 74 gun ship, Botley, 5, Sept. 1815. without any tax imposed by the General There you are, then, in the marrow of Government. the counter-revolution now! Not, that I But, it is towards France that their efcan suppose, that your Lordship will take forts are now directed. That fine country delight in seeing the French Protestants they want to see ravaged, torn to pieces, stabbed, shot, ripped open, and burnt the people all murdered, and the whole over slow fires. To delight in torture, to region left a wild wilderness. They are feel satisfaction at hearing the cries of incessantly calling out for what they term dying, belongs only to men, who resem- justice on criminals, though it is notorous, ble what we are told of deyils. But, that, if Louis XVIII. had not abdicated though you must commisserate the poor the throne of France, James II, never abProtestants, I am going to shew your dicated the throne of England. Lordship that there are others, and those Still, however, one would have supothers Englishmen too, who do not, and posed, that even these men, certainly thic who, indeed, justify such acts, when com- most bloody that ever put pen to paper

for mitted by Royalists.

the press, would have stopped short of The Times newspaper, which is the justifying the massacre of the Protestants. organ-of a large portion of the people of Herbert Marsh, John Bowies, and RowLondon, especially the rich, speaks of land Hill, will hardly go this length; these massacres in the words which I though we do not see their pens in motion shall presently quote. From the day in behalf of these unfortunate victims of that the allies entered France, this man Royalist fory. The Times newspaper, has been calling out for blood. lle however, that advocate for the Bourbon and his fellow labourers, before the battle government, goes the full length in the of Waterloo, represented the main body of following words :-“We hope the Allies the French people as being zealous on the 66 will not withdraw from France until side of the King. After that battle their 6 they see all the parts of the social matone changed. Napoleon, when he was 5 chine in regular and accordant operadisposed of, was said to have been nothing, “tion. In the name of humanity, let us though it is notorious, that he was, before 66 not have the prospect of a new revolusaid to be, every thing. In short, these 6 tion the moment this unhappy nation is basc hypocrites are now calling for the left to itself. Let us see the laws put in unnihilation of France. They now plainly “ full and vigorous operation, the most say, that it is the resources of France dangerous criminals punished, and the which they wish to see destroyed. They, “ others removed from all possibility of from time to time, express their longing“ ugain disturbing the order of the world. desire to see America annihilated too. The 66 Nor is it less necessary that adequule battle of New Orleans, however, added “ compensation be made to those who in to the naval victories of that republic, ilim. o the course of the last rebellion have sufduce them, for the present, at least, to “fered for their fidelity to their King and refrain from calling out distinctly for the country. le see in the instance of murder of the American people. . But,

But, " NISMES, that a refusal of justice by when they have finished France, or rather, " those whose duty it is to restrain crime if their wishes with regard to that country " by punishment, drives the injured inuishould be accomplished, they will then "viduals to take into thcir own hands the

« PreviousContinue »