It strikes us forcibly that there is a want of feeling evident in the proceeding referred to. It is difficult to see what use can be proposed from this discipline of marshalling forlorn creatures for such a purpose. Most certainly, if people have been reduced to such distress, they ought to have at least the right of hiding their wretchedness in a workhouse, or elsewhere, and not to have it submitted to the keenest of aggravations.
However, the plan adopted accords with the wisdom of the Commissioners, who have always insisted upon the poor being disgaced before they are relieved. In accordance with this principle, those functionaries have never given credit to the Irish peasantry for their better habits; but have acted on the unjust assumption that they were ready to become, as if they were not made, a race of ignominious paupers. But in the present case, the degradation of the poor is not even rewarded; the rations which they receive consisting in some extraordinary kind of food, which is stated to be insufficient for their maintenance.
Such a state of things is but a repetition of the misery of last year, in which rate-payers were begarred, and still the poor died. It appears hard, in the meantime, to reconcile the declarations of persons professing to raise the condition of the labourer, with the distribution of those indescribable rations. The present may, perhaps, be considered a matter of no importance. But illustrating, as it does, a system upon which the poor of this country have been degraded, we use it to express our opinion that the destitute have a right to what they receive without the infamous forms above mentioned, all the Commissioners in existence to the contrary notwithstanding.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE CORK EXAMINER.
Who were the parties having the power who passed all the laws now in existence between landlord and tenant? Who were the parties having the power, I will not at present say whether justly assumed, sold our Parliament to the English Minister, at a time admitted by all, when Ireland was prospering? Who are the parties that have brought famine, and its accompnaying miseries on the people?
I say without fear of being honestly contradicted-- The landlords. They have unmercifully enforced the laws made by themselves in recovering rack rents!-- Rack-rents would not satisfy them without trampling on the independence and consciences of the people. I wonder how much better off are they? I would recommend them to join the Tenant Farmers at the county meeting, and there make an honest effort to redeem the country from impending ruin.
Let them have the views impressed on their minds by the Devon rambling commission, and by Stanley's removal of banks or fences, at home. That sort of thimble rigging will not do. Better they should remain away, if not honestly disposed to come to the tenant-right question, as our honoured and respected member for the county, E. B. Roche, did, at the Irish Council in Dublin.
I trust, Mr. Editor, our County meeting will be such as will prove to the Minister of the day, that we are in earnest, and that our demands are just. If he passes a law, free of legal technicalities, granting that right, he may rest assured the miseries of the country will be removed in a very short time. But if he perseveres in upholding the old injustice, or passing half measures, on him, and on his colleagues rests the blame of all the future wretchedness and misery that will befall the country. I remain, Sir, your obedient servant,
A DURALLOW MEMBER OF THE TENANT LEAGUE
One of the police-- and it is not the first time the force have been distinguished for such kindly acts-- got permission to have him put in a neighbouring barn. Here they left him, and on the constable coming again with some nutriment, the wretched man was found almost in a state of insanity, with a sod of turf firmly grasped, which he endeavoured to gnaw. Assistance appeared to revive him, but next morning he was found a corpse.
This shocking event seemed to be attributable entirely to the conduct of the relieving officer of the district. In the present state of the country such an officer exercises a power more tremendous than that confided to any other. His dismissal, therefore, is the least punishment that can be inflicted for the neglect of duties, upon which human life depends.
DEAR SIR-- It is sorely against my will that I am compelled to trespass upon your columns; believe me, Sir, it is the direct necessity that constrains me to do so; and were I not well aware of your readiness to lend a willing ear to the piercing and soul harrowing cries of the poor-- actually famishing of want-- I would still hesitate.
The Lismore Board of Guardians can boast of some high-minded and honourable members. I need only name the chairman-- Sir R. Musgrave-- and yet both ratepayers and paupers have reason to complain. Weeks and weeks have been wasted away in mock attempts at striking a rate, and it was only after the 29th September it was finally settled.
However, it has been struck, and very generally collected; and yet, week after week, the trembling skeletons of human beings are denied relief, there being no room in the Workhouse-- and are sent back to their cold and cheerless homes-- if homes they can be called-- without a morsel to eat, or perhaps a rag to cover their attenuated limbs. Have these men hearts to feel? --is it by violating God's most imperative precept they expect to extricate themselves and the country from its present awful and embarrassing position? No-- no-- the cry of the hungry widow and the orphan penetrates the clouds; heard it likely will be. Why not allow the relieving officers to afford them as much relief as would help to sustain life at all events, till such time as room was made for them in the regular Workhouse or elsewhere?
Unless deprived of all feeling, and dead to all sense of shame and humanity, they will not continue this barbarous and wholesale system of thinning the population. --I have contributed more than many, much even beyond my means, to the support of the poor, and yet cheerfully would I meet another call from the Collector, rather than be forced to witness the miserable remnants of human beings wasting away before my eyes. Hoping you will excuse this trouble. --I am, dear Sir,
A FRIEND TO HUMANITY.
Such a document as this comes seasonably to promote a Christmas dinner of meat for the paupers in workhouses. The boon is small, but one, the absence of which must be felt most keenly. There are probably none of them so forlorn, but can remember better times past; and the present is the occasion when they must be reminded most feelingly of their condition. It would be hard if the festivity, universal at this season, even with the very poorest, should not be extended also among the inmates of the workhouse, by granting them, if only for a day, the semblance of a better lot. A hope is entertained that guardians generally will not deny this one gleam of comfort to those to whom comfort is strange. Over and above the good feeling of such an indulgence, manifest propriety directs that the great festival of the year should not be undistinguished even in the most despised condition.
SIR,-- An unfortunate accident occurred in this neighbourhood on the night of Monday the 4th Inst., and, as no statement to that effect has appeared on any of the public Journals, perhaps you would be kind enough to give insertion to the following.
Mr. Redmond Joyce took a large farm from Mr. M'O'Boy of Stumphill on the 25th of last March, with an understanding that he was to get a lease for a term of years; and though Mr. Joyce is an improving tenant, and a solvent mark, Mr. M'O'Boy changed his mind, refused to give the promised lease, and instituted law proceedings in order to eject him, in consequence of which Mr. Joyce was deterred from laying out any money on the farm; but as he was inconvenienced for want of a cow-house, he erected a temporary one to the rear of the dwelling house by throwing some spans of firs across three or four old walls that ran parallel to each other, on which he erected a large hay rick, which was shaken by a strong gale of wind, and the mortar having lost its adhesive qualities, gave way.
Ten very fine milch cows, worth on an everage from nine to eleven pounds each, were killed on the spot, one woman's leg was broken, and another poor creature lay between the backs of two cows for six hours, but fortunately escaped unhurt. If we take into consideration the damage done to the hay, Mr. Joyce sustained a loss equivalent to one hundred and fifty pounds owing to his landlord's breach of faith.
Surely, the above is a strong argument in favor of tenant-right, and clearly demonstrates if we had a fair compensation for an outlay of capital, Mr. Joyce would have built a proper cow house, and necessarily escaped this heavy loss.
I have the honor to be, Sir, your obedient servant,
An appeal has been set on foot to aid them to their destination; and
certainly no claim calls more strongly upon the feelings of compassion. The
assistance is of a kind that will not be asked again, as it was entirely
unforseen that it would be required by the sufferers. When it is remembered that
so many of their class have already died from want of the means to bear up
against the hardships of their journey, the question, in the present case, is
not so much of their degree of comfort, as of their existence; and depends on
their being relieved now, when only they can receive relief.