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489 Emigration from the United Kingdom. Feb. 15, 1827. tute of employment. If there was a Mr. James Grattan objected to the hope that all the present distress would motion, as calculated to lead the people be removed, and the cloud which, at pre- of Great Britain, and especially those of sent, hung over their prospects would Ireland, astray. Emigration was the clear away—if it was possible to find any hobby, if he might so call it, of the hon. other method of permanently employing gentleman opposite; but it had been their families, and leaving the supply proved by experience, that emigration, equal to the demand-then God forbid upon any extended scale, would not do; that he should be the first to recommend and, in the mean time, hopes were excited emigration from this country to any among the distressed people. They other! But if the question rested upon the imagined that a plan was in preparation point of whether the distress was temporary for their removal, and that money was or permanent, he feared there was very little going to be granted for their aid ; while chance of any permanent relief by employ- the hon. gentleman went on, from session ment, so as to place those who were now to session, appointing his committee, dissuffering beyond the reach of distress. It cussing projects which the country had would be unnecessary for him to say that no means of realizing, and describing the introduction of machinery must, under scenes of comfort and amelioration which, every circumstance, be considered a most by no probability could come to pass. desirable object. One thing was certain, By the calculation of colonel Cockburn, that the productions by the means of ma- the military experiment made in 1816 had chinery had become great enough to pre-cost the country, for each settler, at the vent any fear of a rise in the price of any rate of 201. per man. He repeated, that commodity by the withdrawing of workmen the expense of such a proceeding made it through the means of emigration. impossible for the country to execute it to

The hon. member then went into an any considerable extent. We were called explanation of the details, as shown from upon to lay out enormous sums for the the labours of the last committee, and purpose of sending our population abroad. stated the maximum cost of the transport | Would it not be better, in the first inof every individual to Canada to be about stance, to try the cheaper experiment, of 201. Many of them, indeed all, had making them comfortable at home? And, there been fortunate; and there was the even with all this expense, the system of best ground for believing, that the con- emigration was radically bad. If it redition of repaying the advances made to lieved us of our number for the present, them by government could not, under the vacuum so produced would be very any circumstances, be considered a hard- soon again supplied. With respect to ship. He was well aware that the subject Ireland, what had been the opinion of of emigration, as connected with the persons well calenlated to judge, as to the manufacturing districts, required much effect of emigration ? Let the hon. genfurther examination, and he did not pre- tleman, who was so anxious to move the tend to deny that it might not lead to a labouring population out of Ireland, comconsideration of the whole state of the pel their landlords to do something which Poor-laws. This only he would venture should find them present food and employto declare, that unless they fairly met the ment. What was the evidence of Mr. evil, and applied some real and substan- Nimmo before the committee? tive remedy, the demands under those Nimmo was a Scotchman, and not likely laws would soon absorb the whole rental to exaggerate what he had seen from any and capital of the country. To that sub- national and party feeling. His evidence ject the committee would apply them- went to show, that riot and ill government, selves, and if they could suggest any other rather than a surplus population, were the or better expedient than emigration, be evils that afflicted Ireland: for he said, would most gladly embrace it; although “ In places like Derry, where the country he had no hesitation in saying, after the was quiet, I found the land letting for 51. most mature consideration, that it was his an acre; and yet the people well off, and deliberate conviction that no better re- satisfied; but, in Kerry, where the land medy could be found. He would now was let at only 11. an acre, the country move, “ That a Select Committee be ap- was in a state of tumult, and all was mispointed to consider the subject of Emigra- erable, and going wrong.” He wished tion from the United Kingdom.”

Irish gentlemen would look to Ireland in

Mr.

the discussion of this question. The snatch, by constitutional means, those bishop of Limerick had said in his evi- privileges which they had so long prayed dence, why do you not employ the redun- for in vain. dant population at home, in the fisheries, Colonel Torrens said, that having given in the making of roads, and not send them great consideration to the subject of abroad? He did not think that many emigration, and believing emigration, as a Irishmen would now colonize with any general measure, to be capable of conbut irritated feelings; and the probability ferring the most extensive benefits upon was, that they would be among our bit- this empire, he naturally felt desirous to terest and most implacable enemies. He reply to some of the observations which trusted that the House would not suffer a had been that night urged, upon his side new committee to be appointed. For his of the House, on the present question. own part, he would rather vote a sum of Instead of deprecating emigration, as some money for the relief of these distressed hon. gentlemen had done, and in no very persons at home; and he thought that, if measured terms, he was convinced that all there was to be a tax for the purposes of those who had reasoned this great quesrelief, it had better be spent at home than tion, upon sound and intelligent prinin furnishing the means of emigration to ciples, must perceive that it was calculated other countries. He would therefore to work almost unlimited advantage to move as an amendment, “ That the state Great Britain, and that for the evils of that of distress existing in this country at pre- country which had just been touched sent, and the still greater distress which upon, it offered the only efficient remedy. has existed for so many years in Ireland, The hon. member for Wexford had told the requires some more immediate and per- House that, for want of employment in manent remedy than any which may be their native country, the poor labourers of expected to result from the re-appointment Ireland were compelled to ship themselves of a Committee on Emigration.”

hither; that on arriving here, they disMr. Lombe rose to second the amend-covered a redundancy of hands offering ment. He said, that if the hon. gentleman for agricultural labour, and were, thereopposite would come down to that House fore, obliged to return back to Ireland, with a fair and honest scheme of coloniza- where, of necessity, they fell into the most tion, he should have his cordial support ; abject state of pauperism and want. Now, but this was a mere delusion. As to could any fact prove more strongly than Ireland, there was but one course to be this, that, if it was possible to obviate this pursued - Catholic emancipation must hard necessity, these people ought not to be granted. It was said that the present be bandied backwards and forwards, bedistresses of that country were owing to tween the two countries, like miserable want of employment, and that there was shuttlecocks, abandoned to their own no capital to furnish that employment. wretchedness? Another hon. member But why was there no capital ? Because was of opinion, that British capitalists and of the disturbances which existed there; British farmers should settle among them, and which would prevent any capitalist in and endeavour to give employment to the his senses from risking his property in unfortunate population of that country. that country. Remove the disabilities But that hon. gentleman ought to know, under which the Catholics laboured, and that in Ireland there was already a great these disturbances would no longer exist. redundancy of that population employed He was sure he spoke the sentiments of in agricultural labour; that in point of every honest Irishman when he said, that fact, twice the number of agricultural if these disabilities were removed, the peo- labourers which were employed in Engple of Ireland would become good and land, failed in Ireland to raise the same peaceful subjects; and the English ca- amount of produce. pitalist might then settle there in perfect If already, therefore, double the numsecurity. This would certainly be the ber of agricultural hands were in work in result. He trusted that the great question Ireland, what would be the effect of introof Catholic emancipation would pass that ducing into that country the English and House in a few days; and if it did not, Scotch system of agriculture? Why, of he hoped he should live to see the day necessity, to render one-half of the whole when ihe people of Ireland would come in agricultural population of Ireland, absoa body to the doors of that House, and lutely and positively redundant, and totally unemployed. An hon. gentleman had ap- removed, and to see that country one with plied epithets to the schemes of emigra- this, and governed by the same laws; but tion that had been, at different times, con- he must say, that he thought it a little too templated by the government, which might much for the hon. member who spoke last surely as well have been spared. The to mix up the question of Catholic emanquestion of emigration was one so wide, cipation with that of emigration; and he and to be discussed upon principles so would venture to say, that if Catholic abstruse, yet so philosophical, that it would emancipation were granted to-morrow, it not be disposed of by applying to it a few would not relieve, in the slightest degree, epithets of such a character ; and, still the distresses of Ireland, He would add less, in so far as it regarded Ireland. one word about the expense of carrying It was not the want of capital that caused this projected emigration into effect. the distresses of Ireland ; it was the fact Great stress had been laid upon this; and of her territory being too small to support some hon. gentlemen appeared to think, her population ; and thus it was that the that the greatness of the expense would be redundancy of population met them at the fatal to the project. He, however, was of very threshold of the argument, and was opinion, that the expense of sending out a the evil to which a remedy must be first million of people to Canada would be well applied. This great and important ques- repaid. They would occupy twenty miltion must be tried by its own merits. In lions of acres of the best land which governIreland there was, as it was confessed on ment could give them, and if capital were all hands, a redundancy of population ; supplied them, these acres would in a and the hon. gentleman under the gallery few years be worth a pound an acre; had proposed to remedy this evil by in- and could they not then afford to pay a creasing the capital of that country. Now, shilling a year rent? Any body accushe would inform that hon. gentleman, that tomed to consider the value of land, and the where there were not fertile lands on which growth of rent, would entertain no doubt capital could be applied, it might happen, that to Canada this calculation, at the that in one and the same country both lowest, would apply. And, as to that noble capital and labour might be redundant. country, people at home really looked at He need not remind any hon. gentleman the question in a very narrow point of who was conversant with these matters, view. They looked at Canada simply as that when double capital was applied to she now was, not with any regard to what land, it would not always give a double she might be to what she must hereafter result. There was a point, at which, after attain to—in the occupation of a large repeated applications of capital to a farm, British population of settlers, going out any succeeding applications of capital there with sufficient, though probably could not be successfully made, any more frugal, means. These persons would nathan it would be successful in the result turally require a great abundance of coarse to apply large portions of capital to lands materials, but materials of light and easy of a certain degree of want of fertility. freight; and the mother country would The state of the question was this. Eng- gradually be founding a commerce, which land had a redundant capital, and a re- would one day become most extensive. dundant population ; Ireland had a re- Markets for various commodities would be dundant population, and in the colonies constantly springing up in Canada, and land was redundant. Emigration, there she would, at no distant period, become as fore, was merely the application of the flourishing, in proportion to her resources, redundant capital and population of the as the United States themselves. She united kingdom to the redundant land of would very soon evince a progress not less the colonies. This would be to increase rapid than that which the United States the national wealth, and he would contend displayed after the war of independence. that it was the only ineans of putting He would say again, that the measure down our poor-laws, which were a Spen- which was contemplated by the present cean system, that would, if persevered in, motion, was a great measure, pregnant break down all aristocratical distinctions, with mighty results, and founded upon the and reduce every state and condition to best and soundest principles of political the same level of poverty and misery.— economy—that it would combine those With respect to Ireland, he wished as productive elements of wealth and power, heartily as any man, to see all disabilities which, uncombined, were fruitless--that it would relieve, as he had before observed, experiments amounted to a total failure, Ireland from the oppressive redundancy of and ought not to be repeated. But did her population; and England from the he, therefore, say, that, in the present disalarming and destructive increase of her tressed state of the country, emigration poor-rates; and finally, that it would ought not to be encouraged ? Far from spread the British name, the British laws, it. He contended, that this committee and British influence throughout all climes ought to sit, and beat about for some of the world.

better and more eligible means of effect· Mr. Bright considered that this was a ing such purposes as were contemplated practical question, and had been dealt by these experiments. If they began by with too theoretically. He had, no doubt, removing the difficulties and impediments that emigration, on a large scale, would which now interposed to prevent the rebe of great benefit to the country; but he moval of the distressed, there would thought that the measures pursued by speedily be a multitude beyond the one government, with respect to emigration hundred and twenty persons already spoto British America, were not those which ken of, settled in Canada. At one period, ought to have been pursued. The hon. let it be remembered, no less than seventySecretary had, in effect, given the House five thousand persons embarked from Ireto understand, that his schemes of emi- land, within a very short space of time, gration had perfectly succeeded. He had for the colonies; and, if these facilities intimated, that the experiment of 1823 were opened, as they should be, that meahad had every success; but in this point sure would soon be repeated. The hon. he entirely disagreed with him. The hon. gentleman, after praising the objects and gentleman had talked about some strange exertions of the Quebec Emigration Somultiplication of property in the case of one ciety, and pointing out its great importhundred and twenty persons settled in Upper ance and utility in forwarding settlers to Canada, whohad taken out only 201.a-piece, their locations, proceeded to shew that

, and were now worth in the aggregate,7,0001. that institution ought to be encouraged But, with this estimate, let the House con- and supported by the government. The trast the evidence of col. Cockburn; and, government ought not to shrink from the having done so, the House would be slow question of emigration, from any fear of to believe that Mr. Robinson, the con- expense. He thought Canada one of the ducter of the experiment of 1825, had bulwarks of the empire, and it was of the effected twice as much. From the state- greatest possible moment that she should ments of these gentlemen, he inferred be adequately colonized and supported, if that the results of each expedition had we meant to protect ourselves in our Amebeen disastrous. Mr. Robinson, in parti- rican possessions, or wished to defend cular, was evidently anxious to explain them from encroachment. A large anaway a charge that had been made against nual sum of money from the public purse, the misfortunes that attended the experi- for the advancement and encouragement ment which he conducted. It appeared of this beautiful colony, would be always that the people were landed in Canada at well expended : but, in order to the sucthe wrong time of the year; but, he added, cess of that measure, the country ought to they were as comfortable as could be. be properly surveyed and mapped. To He admitted, that there were many local accomplish this object, he should gladly fevers and agues about; but then, he con- support the expenditure of 50,0001.; and solingly added, “ we brought two thou- he thought it would be a meanness unsand people out; and have lost but one worthy of this country, and of the object hundred.” He allowed that they were to which it was to be applied, to object to much annoyed by the mosquitos and in- a grant which, if well laid out, must in the sects; but then they were all pretty well. end prove highly beneficial, as well to the Could it, then, be seriously contended, nation, as to the persons for whose relief it that these experiments had succeeded? If was immediately intended. Differing, as Mr. Robinson encountered such difficul- he did, from the views of the hon. Secreties in conducting his people to their loca- tary, and from the recommendations which tion in the second experiment, what must the committee had made for the future, have been encountered by colonel Cock- still he was convinced that the committee burn in respect to the first? The hon. ought to go forward ; because he believed gentleman declared that he thought these that from the inquiry would spring evi

a

dence upon which the House might safely | them about Irish affairs, little had been act, and suggestions which might be prac done in them, compared with the knowticable

ledge which parliament had acquired of Mr. Brownlow, 'though somewhat dis-them. Neither did he mention this as appointed with the statements that had matter of blame; for, so aggravated was been that evening made by the hon. Secre- the situation of that country, that it retary near him, felt considerably gratified quired a very vigorous mind in the man that, hitherto, whatever objections had who should take up one part of the combeen taken to the measure recommended plicated case, which that anomalous situby that hon. gentleman, applied only to ation presented to him, not to abandon the details, and not to the principle of the the rest of it in utter despair. From himmeasure. That principle was left entirely self the hon. Secretary had the greatest untouched ; namely, the relief of the not praise; because, next to that great and merely excessive, but vastly superabundant, vital question, which stood upon their population of Ireland. This superabund- books for discussion on the 1st of Marchance was general, and not confined to the next to the political evil which now wasted mountains and waste lands only, which the strength and impaired the resources the hon. member for Wicklow recommend of Ireland—there was no subject so deeply ed that they should be employed to cul- interesting to an Irishman as this question, tivate instead of being conveyed to eat touching the only measures which could bread and to earn money in America. effectually relieve his country from the evils But, in the former case, where was the arising out of her superabundant populabread to be had, or the money to be found tion. It seemed, however, that this was, acto support these poor people during their cording to the expression of one gentleman, employment? The gravamen of this case the hobby" ofthe hon. Secretary; and it was was, that thousands and hundreds of said that every man had his hobby: but the thousands, nay, he might say, two-thirds report, with the accompanying evidence, was of the people of Ireland, were unemployed. a very valuable document, and well worthy The hon. member for Bristol had objected, of being read. Yet the whole of that evithat the hon. Secretary's measure was not dence and report might be dispensed with, the right one. Now, he would admit that and a very strong and pressing case would rethe details of the measure were very im- main, for takingthe condition of the superportant, and might involve the inex- abundant population of the empire into pediency of the whole measure itself, consideration.—He would now advert to and it would be very well to consider the evidence which was taken before the them, when they should have been Irish committee, of which the hon. Secrebrought before the House. But after tary was not a member. The hon. memall that had been said on this subject, it ber for Bristol had great sympathy with was a little too hard for the House to the men who went out in 1823; they, it be trying details which had not yet come seemed, were not well off enough ; they under their notice. The hon. Secretary found the climate bad; they were bitten was not now calling on the House to ap- by mosquitos. But, did that hon. gentleprove or support any specific plan; nor man know what was the situation of the did he mean, as an hon. member seemed pauper population of Ireland ? for that to apprehend, to kill Irish emigrants with was the point to which he now desired to salt pork, boiled beef and plum-pudding. call the attention of the House ; and he All that the hon. Secretary had said, in would read two or three extracts from the effect, was

“ Our experiment of 1823 evidence given before the committee in succeeded to a certain degree. Give me a question. Major Wilcox examined as committee, and let us prepare a plan of to the condition of the state of the popuemigration, such as, upon all considera-lation in Limerick county, stated, what? tions, shall appear most likely to be suc- that they were living in good log houses ? cessful.” For his part, he (Mr. Brown- with so many acres of land around them, low) was much obliged to the hon. Secre- and every day bettering their condition? tary for having brought forward the ques- No; but that hordes of these unfortunate tion. In the first place, that fact alone paupers were living amidst bogs, with no savoured of doing something for Ireland. Other covering but sedge; and very little He could not help thinking, that, though of that. Mr. Dunn, of Queen's county, a flood of light had lately poured in upon deposed, that there was a great want of

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