« PreviousContinue »
and having long witnessed the oath that he would give up his unceasing but ineffectual exer- farm. tions on the part of many of the In the month of April in the magistrates in the most disturbed present year, a similar police esparts of those counties, 1 deter- tablishment was also appointed in mined to accede to their applica- three barvnies (t) of the county tion, and with the advice of the of Clare, on a representation rePrivy Council, subjected the con- ceived from 20 inagistrates of that tiguous districts of the two coun- county. Por a considerable time ties to the operation of the insur- past, certain districts in that rection act, hy a proclamation, county had been in an unsettled which bears date the 24th of No- state ; but in the course of the vember.
preceding year I had been informIn the course of the presented by the magistrates, that the year, the insurrection act has not examples made under the insurbeen enforced in any new instance. rection act in the counties of TipIn the month of March, in conse- perary and Limerick, hac produced quence of a memorial from 27
a very beneficial effect in the magistrates of the county of county of Clare. In the months, Louth, a special magistrate, with however, of February and March 50 constables, was appointed, for of the present year, offences of the the purpose of assisting them to same general character with those maintain the peace in four baro- which I have before described nies (*) of that county.
were very frequently committed. Various acts of outrage were Nightly meetings of large numcommitted in these baronies about bers of the lower orders took this perioil. In the course of one place: in one district, in the week 11 houses in the neighbour- course of the month of March, hood of Dundalk were plundered several houses were wilfully burnof arms. The house and offices ed, and threatening notices were of a farmer, who had prosecuted posted up, directed against the some persons by whom he had letting of lands to others than the been robbed and nearly murder- old proprietors, and against the ed, were wilfully set on fire and payment of rents, except under consumed A party of armed certain prescribed regulations. persons, reported to be not less I have enumerated all the sethan 200 in number, attacked the veral instances in which I have, house of another individual, and with the advice of the Privy entered it, after meeting with Council, enforced the provisions considerable jesistance; after of either of those acts of the Lewounding very severely the owner gislature which passed in the ses and two other inhabitants of the sion of 1814.
It will appear, house, they compelled him to de- from the detail into which I have liver his arms, and to take an entered, that the insurrection act
(*) Upper and Lower Dundalk, Ardee, and Louth.
() Clonderlan, Ibrachan, and Moyarta.
has been enforced in the county From the magistrates of the of Limerick, the county of the eity of Limerick, assembled at an city of Limerick, in several baro- extraordinary sessions of the peace nies of the county of Tipperary, on the 15th day of April last, a two barvnies of the county of memoriał w as transmitted, stating Westmeath, and in a district of their opinion that the circunstanthe King's county: and that in ces which induced them to apply certain districts of three counties, for the provisions of the 54th of Tipperary, Louth, and Clare, the King to be put in force in the special magistrates and constables county of the city of Limerick no have been placed, having the or- longer existed. dinary powers given to civil offi- s have also received a memorial cers, and the expences consequent from the magistrates of the coun. on their appointment being levieil ty of Westmeath, assembleil at a from the district within which special session of the peace held they act.
last month, expressing the deep I shall now state to your Lord- sense which they entertain of the ship the general result of the mea- benefit which their county has ex
which have been thus perienced from the measures adopted for the preservation of which had been adopted ; attrithe public peace, in aid of the or- buting the tranquillity they now dinary operation of the law; and enjoy to the successful operations it gives me great satisfaction to be of the provisions of the insurrecenabled to assure you; that tran- tion act; and adding their wish, quillity has been completely re- that the power's with which it instored in some of the districts vested them might be withdrawn, which were the seat of disturbo and the ordinary course of law reance ; and that in three of those stored. districts in which the insurrection I gave immediate effect to their act was enforced in the course of several applications, and the prolast year, it has, in consequence clamations enforcing the insurrecof the improved state of them, tion act in certain districts of the been withdrawn since the com- county of Westmeath, King's. mencement of the present year. county, and the county of the city
In the month of February last; of Limerick, have been severally I received from the nragistrates of revoked by the Privy Council. the King's county a memorial, The only counties, therefore, in expressing their acknowledgments which that act now remains in for the additional powers which operation are the counties of Tiphad been given to them under the perary and Limerick. insurrection act, and for the judi- I have annexed to this dispatch cious distribution of the military a report of the proceedings of the force; stating the good effect to special commission held for the the peace of the county which county and city of Limerick in har resulted from those measures, the month of November, 1815, and giving their opinion, that the and in the county of Tipperary in additional powers entrusted to the month of Febrnary 1816; and thens might be safely withdrawn. a return of persons tried at the
special special session under the insur- rather as a proof of the disordered rection act, for offences against state of society, and of the impethe provisions of that act. I have diments in the way of the adıniadded also a statement of the pro- nistration of justice, than as a ceedings at the several assizes in proof of undue precipitancy on the years 1913, 1814, and 1815, the part of the magistracy, in comand Lent assizes of the year 1816, mitting on the suspicion of crimiso far as relates to committals and nality. I may be allowed here to convictions for criminal acts con- adıl, that the danger attendant on nected with the disturbance of the the giving of information or evipublic peace in the following coun- dence was so notorious, and so ties; Westmeath, Tipperary, Li- much impeded the conviction of merick, King's county, Queen's the guilty at no remote period, county, Longford, Louth, Clare, that the Legislature found it necesRoscommou and Waterford. sary, with the view of deterring
There may appear to your from the murder of witnesses, Lordship a great disparity in some and of preventing the impunity of
between the number of the parties against whom those committals and the number of witnesses had deposed, to enact, convictions : and persons unac- that if any person having given quainted with the internal state of information upon oath of any ofthis country may infer that com- fence against the laws should be mittals too frequently take place murdered, or forcibly carried without suflicient evidence of guilt away before the trial of the peragainst the parties apprehended. son deposed against, such inforNo such conclusions, however (Imation on oath should be admitmean so far as relates to the gene- ted as evidence on the trial. ral practice of the magistracy to It has been necessary in the commit suspected persons on disturbed counties (in most inslight and insufficient ground) stances of persons having given ought to be drawn. The frequent information on oath, or intending instances which have come to my to give evidence upon trial) on knowledge, wherein prosecutors account of the serious danger to and witnesses have been intimida- which such persons are exposed, ted by the menaces of the friends to reniove them to places of secuof the parties deposed against; ity previous to the trials, and ulthe experience I have had of the timately to provide for their redanger to which they, and even moval from their usual abodes. their relations, are exposed ; of In many cases the witnesses for the necessity which in almost the crown have, at their own reevery case occurs, that they should quest, been kept a considerable quit the place of their birth and period, previously to the trial, in residence; of the odium which the gaol of the county, as affordiuniversally attaches to the naine ing them the best means of proof an informer; compel me to tection; in other cases they have consider the disproportion be been protected in barracks, or tween the number of coinmittals brought to Dublin, where how. and convictions in many districts, ever, occasionally, they have not been safe from the hostility of the Address of the Corporation of Lonfriends of the parties appre- don to the Prince Regent, deliverhended.
ed December 9, 1816; with the I have not thought it necessary
Answer of his Royal Highness. to mention the numerous applica- To His Royal Highness the Prince tions which have been, and con- of Wales, Regent of the Unitinue to be made, for military as- ted Kingdom of Great Britain sistance in aid of the civil power,
and Ireland. by magistrates and others. I ne- The humble Address and Petition ver recommend the commander of the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, of the forces to accede to those and Commons of the City of applications, without the strong- London, in Common Council est evidence of their necessity ; assembled. and in almost every case, the mi- May it please your Royal litary officer in command of the Highness, district from which the requisi- We, his Majesty's most dutiful tion proceeds, is directed to in- and loyal subjects, the Lord Mayquire personally into the grounds or, Allermen, and Commons of on which it is marle. I ought the city of London in Common not, however, to omit to mention, Council assembled, humbly apthat a very considerable military proach your Royal Highness to force is employed in giving as- represent our national sufferings sistance to the officers of revenue and grievances, and respectfully in the suppression of illicit distil- to suggest the adoption of mealation, which prevails to a great sures which we conceive to be inextent in several of the northern dispensably necessary for the safeand western counties of this king- ty, the quiet, and prosperity of dom. In consequence of an or- the realm. der of the House of Commons, We forbear to enter into details made in the month of February of the afflicting scenes of privain the present year, a return has tions and sufferings that everybeen made of the troops at that where exist : the distress and mitime employed on this service, sery which for so many years has which I have annexed to this dis- been progressively accumulating patch, and which will give full in- has at length become insupportformation with respect to the able-it is no longer partially felt number of men employed, the de- nor limited to one portion of the tachments into which they are di- empire : the commercial, the inavided, and the stations at which nufacturing, and the agricultural they are placed.
interests are equally sinking unI am with great truth and re- der its irresistible pressure, and it gard, my lord, your lordship's has become impossible to find most obedient humble servant, employment for a large mass of
the population, much less to bear (Signed)
up against our present enormous
We beg to impress upon your The Viscount Sidinouth, &c. Royal Highness, that our present Vol. LVIII.
complicated complicated evils have not arisen tion and the declared sense of the from a mere transition from war nation, affording another melanto peace, nor from any sudden or choly proof of the corrupt state of accidental causes; neither can the representation, in addition to they be removed by any partial or those facts so often stated, and temporary expedients.
offered to be proved at the bar of Our grievances are the natural the House of Commons, in a peeffect of rash and ruinous wars, tition presented in 1793 by the unjustly commenced, and pertina- Hon. Charles, now Lord Grey, ciously persisted in, when no ra- whereby it appeared that the great tional object was to be obtained body of the people were excluded of immense subsidies to foreign from all share in the election of Powers to defend their own ter- members, and that the majority ritories, or to commit aggressions of that Hon. House were returnon those of their neighbours—of ed by the proprietors of rotten a delusive paper currency-of an boroughs, the influence of the unconstitutional and unpreceden- Treasury, and a few powerful fated military force in time of peace milies. -of the unexampled and increas- We can, Sir, no longer support ing magnitude of the civil-list- out of our dilapidated resources of the enormous sums paid for an overwhelming load of taxaunmerited pensions and sinecures, tion, and we humbly submit to and of a long course of the most your Royal Highness, that nolavish and improvident expendi- thing but a reformation of these ture of the public money through- abuses, and restoring to the pe.out every branch of the Govern- ple their just and constitutional ment, all arising from the corrupt right in the election of Members and inadequate state of the repre- of Parliament, can afford a secusentation of the people in Parlia- rity against their recurrencement, whereby all constitutional calm the apprehensions of the control over the servants of the people-allay their irritated feelCrown has been lost, and Parlia- ings—and prevent those misforments have become subservient tunes in which the nation must to the will of Ministers.
inevitably be involved by an obWe cannot forbear expressing stinate and infatuated adherence our grief and disappointinent, to the present system of corrupthat, notwithstanding your Roy- tion and extravagance. al Highness's gracious recom- We therefore humbly pray your mendation of economy at the Royal Highness to assemble Paropening of the last sessions of liament as early as possible, and Parliament, your ministers should that you will be graciously pleased have been found opposing every to recomiend to their immeproposition for lessening the na- diate consideration these importional expenditure, and that they tant matters, and the adoption of should have been able to obtain measures for abolishing all usemajorities to support and sanction less places, pensions, and sinetheir conduct in defiance of your cures—for the reduction of our Royal Highness's recommenda- present enormous military estab