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CRYSTAL PALACE COMPANY.
DEED OF SETTLEMENT,
LIST OF SHAREHOLDERS.
HENRY G. BOHN, YORK STREET, COVENT GARDEN.
HAVING taken a lively interest in the Exhibition of 1851, and co-operated with it as one of its Chairmen, I willingly connected myself with its successor, as well by taking shares as by exhibiting.
It was presumed that the admitted mistakes which had arisen in a first experiment, would be avoided in the second, but they appear rather to have been multiplied. Though the second management was formed principally out of the materials of the first, the experience of the past afforded no lesson for the future. Eyes and ears were shut against the common principles of mercantile speculation, till it was too late to apply them. This was so manifest to discerning shareholders that they rushed to sell; hence the present excessive depreciation. Let us hope that the new management will remedy the defects of its predecessors ; but a task that was at first easy will now be difficult. A year or more ago, at a meeting convened expressly to consult the Exhibitors in the Book and Stationery Court, I had suggested plans of general encouragement, which I felt sure would prove successful, but was told that they could not possibly be entertained. That they were necessary I knew; and strange to say, impossible as they were then supposed, they are now about to be carried into effect; but the time is almost past, and enthusiasm sickened if not altogether effete.
These reflections have poured from me without premeditation; my intention having been merely to account for the present publication. In attending the various public meetings I constantly found that some well-meant speaker was stopped in his course by the formal production of the
Charter, or Deed of Settlement, as a bar to his motion. Indeed I believe some such difficulty occurred at almost every meeting. The Crystal Palace Company have printed every thing cheaply but these, and though a cry constantly arose for them, it did not seem likely to be answered. The List of Shareholders was equally desirable, as, being only readily accessible to the Direction, no motion which depended on votes was likely to be carried by any one not supported by it. This was felt strongly on a recent occasion when the list of names for directors was submitted to the shareholdersthose only being elected who were supported by the Board.
I had the pleasure of proposing my friend, Mr. S. Leigh Sotheby as one of them, who, living within a stone's throw of the Palace, and being an active man of business, besides holding 542 shares, seemed particularly eligible. Although I have many personal friends who are large shareholders and who voted for him, he was not returned, mainly, I think, because he had no ready means of bringing home his claims by circulars, and had to rely solely on advertisements. He however, obtained 21,300 votes from about 500 shareholders, and upon a future occasion will, I have no doubt, be elected. I proposed him, knowing the great and personal interest he has taken in the undertaking since its commencement, and in the belief that he would advocate stringent economy; the distribution of the annual income among the shareholders, instead of converting it into further capital ; and the rejection of all fanciful schemes of conversion till the shares arrive at a premium, and can be dealt with equitably.
This brochure is published without any view to profit, and if any loss accrues it will be borne by two or three spirited shareholders.
HENRY G. BOHN.
York Street, Covent Garden,
March 31, 1856.
DIRECTORS, 1856, AND SUPERIOR OFFICERS.
ARTHUR ANDERSON, Chairman. SAMUEL BEALE,
ALEXANDER C. IONIDES, T. N. FARQUHAR,
JOHN SCOTT RUSSELL,
JAMES FERGUSSON, General Manager. GEORGE GROVE, Secretary. GEORGE FASSON, Treasurer.
WILLIAM PIRIE, Cashier.
W. J. ROBSON, Registrar.
JOHNSON, FARQUHAR & LEECH, Solicitors.
SIR J. PAXTON, M.P., M. DIGBY WYATT, OWEN JONES,
Original Directors of the Works, Fine Arts, fc.,
B. FOTHERGILI., Machinery Department.
E. MILNER, Exterior Gardens.
G. EYLES, Interior Gardens.