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Again, he remarks that the same class afforded for the sale and consumption of intoxicating liquors.
Subject all their labour to the pots,
and further affirms that,
The greatest artists are the greatest sots.
Good drunken company is their delight,
This description is equally applicable in the
An individual of considerable experience remarks, that if the Government of Great Britain knew, or had materials to calculate the loss which the general revenue of the state suffers, by the comparatively small sums produced by licenses, they would raise the annual sum so high, as to shut up half The difference, he further remarks, between the public-houses now open in the kingdom.
Loss of employment is a common effect of intemperate habits, and operates in various ways in producing national poverty and parishes abounding with ale-houses, and distress. Crime is the frequent result of calculable amount, in point of industry. those which have none, is great to an inpoverty, occasioned by intemperance. In a moral conduct, sobriety, attendance vitiated state of the morals, the means of divine service, above all, family comfort, enjoyment are too generally attained by and eventually of population; and, as a unlawful expedients. The loss of skill and intellect will sub-consequence of the whole, of habitual contentment, submission, and attachment to the sequently be taken into consideration as materially influencing national welfare. All government under which they live. It is, of these causes, not to mention others of has been repeated to me in every part of the concludes this writer, an observation which minor importance, are mutually connected kingdom, and such variety of instances have and inseparable in their general results. that the fact is established beyond conbeen given, all tending to the same result, troversy-multiplied ale-houses are multi
The past and present experience of nations, fully testifies the correctness of the facts and views here advanced.
seems an ale-house. In the one city, all affluence; in the other, the young fellows wears the appearance of happiness and warm walk about the street in shabby finery, their fathers sit at the door darning and knitting stockings, while their ports are filled with dung hills."
2. General state of poverty through intem- plied temptations.* These facts and conclusions are not conperance. The connexion between poverty fined to a town or a nation, but are the and intemperance is a subject which demands results of general investigation. careful and serious consideration. The records of all countries, where intoxicating result of his own widely extended experiGoldsmith states the following to be the liquors have been used, are prolific in ence: "In all the towns and countries I instructive illustrations. The condition of the inhabitants of Siberia forms a striking whose miseries were not in proportion to have seen, I never saw a city or village yet, instance. The city of Tomsk has a popu- the number of its public-houses. lation of about 11,000, and is thus described Rotterdam, you may go through eight or by a recent traveller: "With few exceptions, ten streets without finding a public-house; the city is very mean, and the inhabitants in Antwerp, almost every second house wretchedly poor; the natural indolence of the people, and their being greatly addicted to drunkenness, tending, of course, to increase the evil; for every sensible man knows, that strong drink, instead of drowning the ills of life, only adds to them, and is in itself the greatest evil of all, because it leads to so many others. ThroughUncleanliness and filth invariably accomout every part of Siberia, the evil is prevalent, but in Tomsk it is carried to the pany the poverty which results from intemgreatest excess, a considerable quantity of perance; hence arise other injurious conspirituous liquors being made in the neigh-sequence affecting the health and comfort of the inhabitants. The "good old times" of bourhood, and forming one of the principal England have been eulogised for the superior articles of commerce. Though greatly fatigued, and in need of rest, the wretched-advantages which they are supposed to have afforded to the poor; but we have already ness of the place made us glad to pursue our seen that the habits of our ancestors were dreary journey."* the effects of which were displayed in characterized by more or less intemperance, of Henry VIII. c. 8, it is remarked that general poverty and distress. In the third had fallen into decay, and were no longer "Most cities, boroughs, and towns corporate, inhabited by merchants and men of substance, but principally by brewers, vintners, fishmongers, and other victuallers." The
Dr. Pococke makes a similar observation on the Island of Samos, in Greece, "The
people in Samos are much given to revelling and drunkenness, and are very poor."‡
Similar illustrations might be multiplied, almost to any extent: so universally will it be found, that poverty and distress exist in all nations, in proportion to the facilities
*Travels in Asia, by Captain Blisset, R.N., p,
+ Pococke's Travels, vol. ii. p. 29, folio edition
* Inquiry into the State of the Lower Classes, in a Letter to William Wilberforce, Esq., M.P., by Arthur Young, F.R.S., Dublin, 1798, p. 30.
poor were badly clothed, resided in miserable may be attributed to indulgence in spirituous hovels, and principally lived on rye or oat liquors. It has been estimated, that the bread; and Harrison affirms, that 72,000 average expenditure of money on whiskey in great and petty thieves were put to death Ireland, for the last ten years, amounts to during that reign.
no less a sum than £6,300,000; this sum would support during the year, 230,000 families, at the rate of one shilling and sixpence per day for each family. How much comfort and happiness would be secured by the people of that unfortunate part of the British empire, abstaining from so pernicious
Whether reference be made to ancient or to modern times, the same alarming consequences of intemperance are found to exist, and these in exact proportion to the consumption of intoxicating liquors. The condition of some of the inhabitants of the South Sea Islands, as recently described by a poison! a philanthropic member of the Society of The amount of money consumed in ardent Friends, forms an example in point. "The spirits in Ireland, says Judge Crampton, Island of Bolabola, is one that has suffered would in six years pay its national debt; most of any, by the introduction of spirits, and at the rate of one shilling and sixpence as it has caused the people to distil their per day, would give full employment to bread-fruit, and every kind of food capable 136,000 families. The Mendicity Society of of producing spirit. I can never forget Dublin, cost for its support but a pittance of the abject wretched state of these people, £8,000 a year, and still so much could not with scarcely rags to cover them, in want of be procured to keep its doors open for the everything, and nothing to purchase with: reception of its wretched inmates; but the everything consumed in buying or converting people did not reflect that they spent five into spirits; and the famished appearance million pounds sterling a year in whiskey. of the more than half naked children who In a street in Dublin, only containing what abound, will long retain a place in my might be called 120 solvent houses, there memory, in that love which must ever were seventy-three selling spirits.* intercede on behalf, and plead the cause of Of late years, many very interesting suffering humanity."* statistical facts have been collected, conThe effects of intemperance in producing cerning the effects of intoxicating liquors in national poverty, are fearfully illustrated in producing national property. At a moderate the history of Ireland. That country is calculation, it appears, that at least threepeculiarly favoured in regard to situation, fourths of the poverty exisiting in our nation, climate, soil, and every other circumstance arises from this fruitful source of indigence necessary for attaining national prosperity. and distress. It is indeed a matter of deep Ireland, however, not long ago, exhibited regret, that so large an amount of distress more poverty, and more abject misery of should be produced by the use of an article every description, than any other similarly purely luxurious in its nature. Such, howcircumstanced nation in the world. The ever, is the delusion under which mankind surprise which otherwise might be created labour, that an evil which has ever afflicted by this statement will cease, when it is human beings in the direst form, is not only known that the people of Ireland annually voluntarily allowed to exist to an unlimited consumed not less than 23,300,000 gallons extent, but its use is absolutely fostered and of ardent spirits. At an average price of encouraged in the most effectual manner. seven shillings per gallon, this amount would The following facts will exhibit the inyield no less than £8,000,000. The pau- fluence of intemperance in the production of perism of Ireland, says a writer in a well- poverty. Mr. Mott, contractor for the known periodical, affords to pay about eight management of the poor in Lambeth, and millions sterling for whiskey, not a drop several other parishes, investigated the of which they require, but every drop of causes of pauperism, and in particular such which they swallow.† cases that came under his care. His observa
From the third Report of the Commis- tions especially extended to 300 cases. sioners of "Inquiry into the state of the "The enquiry," says Mr. Mott, "was conIrish Poor," it appears, that there are in ducted for some months, as I investigated Ireland, not less than 585,000 men out of every new case that came under my knowwork, and therefore in distress, during ledge, and I found in nine cases out of ten, thirty weeks of the year; and the number the main cause was the ungovernable inclinaof women and children, aged and sick tion for fermented liquors."+ persons dependent on these, is estimated at Edwin Chadwick, Esq., Barrister, and 1,800,000, making a total of 2,385,000 one of her Majesty's Commissioners for persons dependent on charitable aid, or else inquiry into the operation of the Poor Laws, on depredations upon their neighbour's makes the following statement. "My property, for thirty weeks of the year. The enquiries have extended throughout the greater part of this unparalleled poverty, metropolis, through a considerable proportion of the Counties of Berks, Sussex, Hertford, Kent, and Surrey, and the agricultural
* Letters and Journals of Daniel Wheeler, during
a Visit to the South Sea Islands.
1 Blackwood's Magazine. July, 1857.
*Saunders' News Letter, Oct. 21, 1830.
parishes adjacent to the metropolis. Ition, that £30 out of every £100 of the believe that all the witnesses of considerable money given as out-door relief, was spent in practical experience, when questioned as to the gin-shop during the same day.
the causes of pauperism, stated to me that Mr. Millar, assistant overseer of the parish the ungovernable inclination for fermented of St. Sepulchre, London, states, "By far liquors, was one very considerable con- the greater proportion of our new paupers, tributory cause."* are persons brought upon the parish by John Twells, Esq., of Highbury, states, habits of intemperance. After relief has respecting that parish, that in his opinion, been received at our board, a great propornineteen out of twenty of the inmates of tion of them proceed with the money to workhouses, get there from either habits of the palaces or gin-shops which abound in drunkenness of their own or their connexions. the neighbourhood."* Out of twenty-six inmates of a workhouse in Some of the clauses of the late Poor Law Birmingham, twenty-four were addicted to enactment, by which out-door relief has been habits of drunkenness, and obliged to be restricted in this country, have removed the debarred from occasionally visiting their evils alluded to in the above statements. friends.† These instances might be multiplied almost The master of a workhouse, in the East of to any extent. In Dublin we find the same London, in writing to a friend, about the practice common. Dr. Adams, of Dublin, year 1831, states, there were 145 cases in in serving out the soup to the poor, in the the house at that time, 111 of which he parish of St. Peter's, asked the applicants could clearly trace had been brought there whether they had tasted spirits that day. from habits of intemperance and spirit Eighteen out of the first twenty acknowledgdrinking. ed that they had bought and drank drams
Of twenty-eight applicants for admission that morning, the price of the dram proto an asylum for old decayed men, twenty bably being more in value than the soup acknowledged themselves to have been in- they had come to beg. When preparations temperate, seven had been by their own were made against the approaching cholera account moderate drinkers, one had been in Dublin, in the same (St. Peter's) district, strictly sober.||
160 straw beds were given out in one day. Of 27,247 objects relieved in 1829, by A gentleman had the curiosity to examine the Sick and Destitute Room Keeper's So- one lane where the beds had been given, and ciety, it is believed by the managers, that found that forty of them had been sold and one half had been reduced from comfortable converted into whiskey. Mr. Carr had circumstances, to extreme want by distilled known persons discharged from Cork Street spirits. § Fever Hospital, in Dublin, presented with Of 143 inmates in one London parish warm clothing, flannels, or bed coverings, workhouse, 105 were found to have been such as blankets for the approaching winter, reduced to that state by habits of intemper- go and sell them for whiskey, and thus enance. They comprised the blind, epileptic, counter the miseries of a severe winter for idiotic, and aged poor, some of whom, if the so called enjoyment of a few hours inopportunity permitted. would indulge in toxication.+ habits of inebriation.
Volumes might be filled with similar illustrations.
The 126 male and 133 female inmates of Such is the ungovernable passion of the the Belfast poor-house, a short time since, habitual drunkard, that every thing is (1834) were, while fit for labour, in the sacrificed, even bread itself, to obtain drink. receipt of £144 weekly, from wages. FiftyThe statements of parish officers prove that eight of them had 158. 54d. per week. The drunkenness not only leads to the most spirit-shop swallowed up no small propordistressing poverty, but that much of the tion of their earnings, and prevented prurelief afforded to out-door paupers, is spent dent savings.‡ in procuring strong drink. An officer of St. George's parish, Southwark, stationed persons to make the enquiry, the result of which was, "that £30 out of every £100 of the money given as out-door relief, was spent in the gin-shop during the same day. Another gentleman, from Aldgate parish, Albany, New York.-G. W. Welch, Esq., states a similar fact. After relieving the superintendent of the alms-house, in Albany, poor, they frequently found them in groups New York, states, that there were, in 1833, at the adjacent gin-shops, and females, not received into the alms-house, 634 persons; unfrequently, apply for relief in a state of viz., intoxication.¶
Mr. Huish, overseer, St. George's, Southwark, states, as the result of actual investiga
* Parliamentary Evidence, p. 29. † Ibid. p. 300.
Ibid. p. 391. | Ibid. p. 426.
In America the same fruitful cause of intemperance operates to an equally fearful extent. A few pointed examples are now adduced.
There were also in the house, on the first of
* Ibid. p. 30. + Ibid. p. 255. Ibid. p. 426.
half that proportion, throughout the United inmates were brought to that state through States, would make more than 200,000.* indulgence in spirituous liquors. New York City.-Mr. Guion, clerk of Rockbridge County.-Captain E. Bryan, the alms-house in New York, states, that in the keeper of the poor-house in Rockbridge addition to 5,179 persons supported in the County, states, that from forty to fifty men alms-house of that city, there were relieved have been inmates of it during the last seven and supported out of the alms-house, 19,150; years, four-fifths of whom, in his opinion, making in all, in that city, relieved or sup- were reduced to pauperism by the use of ported, 24,329: and that three-fourths of strong drink. During the same period, 150 this was occasioned by intemperance. The women and children have been tenants of Report then states, that one-fourth of that the poor-house, half of whom became penproportion, throughout the United States, sioners on public charity by the intemperwould make more than 300,000; four-fifths ance of their parents or husbands. The of whose pauperism is occasioned by alcohol.† annual cost to the county of the pauperism The alms-house in New York City, and the created by intemperance, he estimates at penitentiary connected with it, has about 900 dollars. Thus it would appear that 2000 inmates, constantly at the annual cost these forty men and seventy-five women and of about 100,000 dollars. The resident children, have in seven years cost the temphysician states, that "nearly all of them perate members of society in Rockbridge were addicted to intemperance." A report County, the sum of 6,300 dollars. made to the Legislature of New York, by Baltimore. In the year ending April, the Secretary of State, in the year 1822, 1826, 759 persons were admitted into the shows that there were then 6,896 permanent, alms-house. 554 of these were brought to and 22,111 temporary paupers, whose this condition from the following causes.support cost that year 470,582 dollars. Debility from intemperance, 235. Insanity Boston. Mr. Stone, superintendent of from drunkenness, 54. Syphilis, 85. Each the alms-house Boston, for the period of of whom were intemperate in their habits. eight years, says, "I am of opinion, that Ulcers resulting from the same cause, 34. seven eighths of the pauperism in this Fractures and wounds, which in every case house, is to be attributed to intemperance."+ were received whilst the parties were in a New Hampshire. From a report made state of intoxication, 28. Various diseases, to the Legislature of this State, in 1821, it all traced to drunkenness, 104. Crippled appears that the maintenance of the poor whilst in a state of intoxication, 7. Old had cost them, from 1790 to 1820, 726,547 age, all habitual drunkards, 7. dollars.
Massachusetts.-In this State there were, about the same period, 700 paupers, whose support cost 360,000 dollars.
Philadelphia. - The superintendent of the alms-house in Philadelphia states, that the expense of supporting paupers in that institution, in 1833, was 130,000 dollars; and that ninety per cent. of the amount was occasioned by intemperance.||
The Executive Committee of the American Temperance Society, not many years ago, ascertained from official documents, the numbers and cost of paupers in the cities of Baltimore and Philadelphia, as well as in the States of Massachusets and New York, and by that means the whole number of paupers in the United States was found to be 200,000, and the cost of their support at 10,000,000 dollars. Three-fourths, that is to say, The steward of the alms-house, Phila- 7,500,000 dollars of this sum was set down delphia, affirms that in 1835, there were to the score of intemperance. According to 1243 paupers admitted into that establish- William's register, there were not long ago ment, and that eight out of ten of the adults in the State of New York, 337 distilleries, were of intemperate habits; making 994 of consuming raw materials to the amount of the entire number. 2,278,420 dollars, and manufacturies of The superintendent of the children's liquors, valued at 3,098,042; and 94 brewerdepartment, states it as her conviction from ies, consuming 916,252 bushels of grain, close observation, during a period of eleven and producing beer valued at 1,381,446 years, that ninety out of every hundred dollars. children admitted, were the offspring of intemperate parents.
The poor's rates in England, not long ago, amounted to about £8,000,000. At least Other authentic documents state as two-thirds of this sum originates in the use follows, in relation to the same alms-house. of strong drink, that is to say, £5,333,333. The number of paupers received, In the year 1834, the people of this country In 1823, 4908; expenses, 144,557 dollars. expended in spirits £21,874,000. In 1835, In 1824, 5251; expenses, 198,000 dollars. the expenditure for the same pernicious In 1825, 4394; expenses, 201,000 dollars. poisons, amounted to £23,397,000; an In 1826, 4272; expenses, 129,383 dollars. increase in one year of a million and a half. Total in four years, 18,825; 662,940 dollars. In 1836, a similar increase was found to A great proportion of these unfortunate
* Eighth Report of American Temp. Society.
have taken place, for in that year the amount was £24,710,000. The principal part of this money must have come from the hard earned wages of the poor, who, in large
towns in particular, consume by far the children, in grain, as well as in all the other greatest proportion of spirituous liquors; varied productions of the earth."* and this too in times of poverty and distress. It is, perhaps, not the least lamentable Intoxicating liquors paralyze the sinews of consequence of this system, that the subindustry, cloth their infatuated victims with stances employed in the preparation of inrags, and cast them upon the commiseration toxicating liquors are those which possess and charity of the sober and industrious most nutriment, or saccharine matter, and portions of society. consequently form the staple articles of In the town of Birmingham, at a moderate human subsistence. The beneficent and calculation, there is annually expended in nutritious gifts of the Creator are by this the purchase of alcoholic drinks, a sum means not only destroyed but converted into sufficient to purchase bread for forty thou- a poison, which saps the very foundations of sand families. In one moderately sized town society, and spreads ruin and desolation in Yorkshire, the annual loss from the use throughout the world. The juice of the of strong drink, is fairly calculated at grape, and the pomegranate, the sap of the £117,910; a sum which in eight years and palm-tree, and the milk of the cocoa-nut, a half, amounts to no less than upwards of when possessed of those natural properties one million pounds sterling. In Brighton with which providence has endowed them, it appears that the local taxes are less than impart health and strength. Man, however, one-sixth the sum annually expended in interferes with the designs of providence, liquor. In the new statistical account of and seeks out new inventions whereby to Scotland, it is stated, that in the parish of gratify his depraved appetites. Lamentable Stephenson, Ayrshire, the population of are the consequences which result from his which is about 3681, the enormous sum of unwise and guilty conduct. £4,125 is annually spent on ardent spirits. This amount is within a trifle of the whole rental of the parish. These, however, are but brief selections from volumes of facts, which might easily be adduced to illustrate this subject; the true source indeed of most of the poverty which prevails in our land. Contrast the state of our own poor with the condition of the inhabitants of countries where these liquors are not used to so free an extent. Strangely deluded indeed are those legislators, who view the revenue derived from the sale of intoxicating liquors as a source of national prosperity.
This investigation might be extended to every portion of the globe where intoxicating liquors are found. The juice of every description of nutritious plants, almost every species of healthful grain, the milk of numerous animals, and even the flesh of those animals, is subjected to careful fermentation. Healthful food is changed by a tortuous process into a most deadly poison. This destructive waste of the bounty of providence was noticed from an early period. mitian, for example, finding that the culture and rapid growth of vines obstructed very much the production of grain, forthwith commanded them to be destroyed. Charles IX., at a more recent period, adopted the same plan. Henry III. also was unwilling that the people should favour the cultivation of the vine, at the expense of wheat. The low price of wines in the years 1805 and 1806, augmented drunkenness so much, that the proprietors of their own accord were obliged to destroy the vines, which were worse than profitless. At the present time the vineyards of France occupy five millions of acres of land, or a twenty-sixth part of the whole kindom.
3. The destruction of grain alone, independently of the serious evils arising from intemperance, doubtless more than preponderates over any benefit derived from a system so manifestly immoral in its nature and tendency. The Report of the late Parliamentary Inquiry on Drunkenness, among other injurious results of the drinking system, includes, "The destruction of an immense amount of wholesome and nutritious grain, given by a bountiful Providence for the food of man, which is now converted by distillation into a poison;" and after looking to the acknowledged fact, The Jesuit Parenmin attributes much of that spirituous liquors "are always, in every the misery and famine frequently endured in case, and to the smallest extent, deleterious, China to the great consumption of grain in pernicious, or destructive, according to the the manufacture of spirits. The Abbé proportions in which they are taken into the Grosier, in his description of China, alludes system," the Report adds, "so that not only in strong terms to the same prolific source of an immense amount of human food is poverty and distress. The Swedes condestroyed, whilst thousands are inadequately sume above 400,000 tuns (a tun is rather fed; but this food is destroyed in such a less than our sack, or half-quarter) of grain manner as to injure greatly the agricultural in the distillation of spirits. Need we producers themselves; for whose grain, but for this perverted and mistaken use of it, there would be more than twice the demand for the use of the now scantily fed people, who would then have healthy appetites to consume, and improved means to purchase nutriment for themselves and
then feel surprised that Sweden does not pro
* Report from the Select Committee on Drunk-
Vol. 1., b. 4., c. 3., p. 396, 8 vo. Eng. transl.