March 25, 1845
Armagh, County Armagh
On the 18th instant, at Kilkeel Church, by the Rev. J. F. Close, Rector, Mr. George M'Cracken, Newry, to Jane, eldest daughter of the late Mr. John Wright, Kilkeel.
On the 17th instant, at Killyman Church, by the Rev. Wm. Quain, George Stewart, Esq., Belfast, to Elizabeth, daughter of the late David Scott, Esq., Dublin.
On the 12th instant, at Hillsborough church, by the Venerable Archdeacon Mant, Mr. Richard Evans, chemist, Manchester, to Eliza, youngest daughter of the late Mr. Joseph Gilmore, Belfast.
On the 15th instant, by the Rev. A. G. Ross, of Markethill, Mr. William Kitson, of Brackley, to Miss Turner, of Corhammock, county Armagh.
March 20, in Middletown Church, by the Rev. Thos. Jervis White, Thomas, eldest son of the late James Wensley Bond, of Cartronard, in the county of Longford, Esq., to Charlotte Stanley, eldest daughter of Henry Coote Bond, of Bondville, in the county of Armagh, Esq.
On the 11th inst., Mrs. Stewart, of Hillhall, near Lisburn. The deceased was the daughter of the late Rev. S. Edgar, of Loughagery, and sister to the Rev. S. Edgar, of Armagh.--The disorder, which terminated in her dissolution, was tedious and distressing. This, however, she bore with distinguished resignation, founded on the atonement of Emanuel, the only ground of hope, and on the prospect of immortality, the only source of consolation in the hour of death. In her life, she was cheerful, pious, and affectionate, full of information, and excelling in conversation. She was, in consequence, the delight of her many friends and acquaintances. She has escaped through the dark portals of death to the regions of endless life, and light, and glory.
Suddenly, at Armagh, on the 20th instant, Hesse Jane, the beloved wife of Robert Turle, Esq., organist of the Armagh Cathedral and daughter of the late Thomas Greer, of Belfast, Esq., deeply and sincerely regretted by a numerous circle of sorrowing friends.
In our obituary of this day we have the melancholy duty of announcing the early and sudden death of Mrs. TURLE, which sad event has cast a complete gloom over our city, as well from the high esteem and respect in which she was held by all classes of her fellow-citizens, as from the awful sudden nature of her decease. On Thursday last she was in the best possible health and spirits, had been out the greater part of the morning, and a few minutes before four o'clock returned to her residence, and there without a moment's warning or the slightest premonitory symptom, she, in the prime of life, and in the enjoyment of every earthly happiness, was called by the dispensations of an all-wise Providence to another and a better world. The far more than common sympathy that is evinced by all is the best evidence of the amiability of her disposition, and of her many virtues. Those who enjoyed the pleasure of her acquaintance will long mourn an affectionate, sincere, and zealous friend; whilst those who were so fortunate as to stand in a more intimate relation with her, can alone have their bleeding wounds healed by that Physician who is never called upon in vain. She has left a memory that will be long and affectionately cherished by all who knew her, and her death has created a blank that will not easily be filled up. Truly in the midst of life we are in death.
On the 12th inst. a man named JOHN M'NEILL drank a quantity of whiskey in Loughgall, and when a little out of that town, on his way home, he went into a house, and instantly dropped dead. A Coroner's inquest was held on the body, and a verdict returned accordingly.
Mr. JEREMIAH MEGARRY has succeeded Mr. WALKER, as Postmaster of Blackwatertown. This appointment reflects credit on the Post-office authorities, as Mr. MEGARRY, we are sure, will prove a trustworthy officer.
SOCIAL TEA MEETING.--The scholars of the Richmount school, together with David Love, Esq., the disinterested patron of the school, and the committee held a soiree in the School-house, on Tuesday, 20th March, when nearly 200 respectable persons sat down to tea at 6 o'clock, in the evening. When tea was over, the chair was taken by James M'Cann, Esq., one of the committee, and addresses were delivered by Mr. Foster, of Tartaraghan, on the improvement of education and its utility to man, and Mr. Spence of Stewartstown, on the conviviality of tea meetings, and also by Mr. A. Hewett, the much respected teacher of the school, in a most lucid and eloquent speech on social intercourse, after which the patron and committee signified their intention of providing globes for the use of the Richmount school. At an early hour the meeting separated, highly delig hted [sic] with the evening's entertainment.
CAUTION TO THE PUBLIC--
IMPORTANT EXCISE CASE.
The Queen at the prosecution of the Excise a. ten respectable Grocers in Portadown and vicinity.
As the public seem to have been ignorant of the fact, that persons dealing in spirits or cordial, cannot sell tea on the same premises, it may be well for their benefit to state that a case came before M. SINGLETON and --- MALONEY, Stipendiary Magistrates, and JOSEPH NICHOLSON, Esqrs., which implicated ten of the most respectable dealers in the vicinity of Portadown, for, that they did sell tea and spirits in the same premises, contrary to the statute in that case made and provided.
P. M'CONNELL, Esq., of Tandragee, appeared for the excise, an informer came forward, named JOHN HADDEN, from Clare, and had, in his cross-examination several discrepancies, and could with very great difficulty make out even his own hand-writing; swore in one case that the amount of money paid was down in the figure 2d.
One of the Magistrates after looking at the book, stated "it may be the body, but I must say it has neither head nor tail of the figure." The Magistrates after going through the trial, which lasted several hours, fined the parties in £6 5s. each, but recommended a memorial to the board of excise as it was the first offence. Some of the parties signified their intention of appealing to the quarter sessions in consequence of several inaccuracies of the informer.
IN THE COURT FOR RELIEF OF INSOLVENT DEBTORS.
In the Matter of BERNARD QUIN, an Insolvent.
TO BE SOLD BY PUBLIC AUCTION, pursuant to adjournment, at the Court-house in the City of Armagh, on Saturday, the 5th day of April next, at the hour of one o’clock in the afternoon the Insolvent’s interest in a Farm of Land in the Townland of Fairlamuckla, in the county of Armagh, containing upwards of five Acres, held from year to year under Walter M’Geough Bond, Esq., at the yearly rent of £2 11s.
These Lands are of good quality, well fenced and drained, and situated on the roadside from Armagh to Newtownhamilton and are within 4-1/2 miles of Armagh and Newtownhamilton, 3 of Keady, and 3-1/2 of Markethill.
There is a substantial stone and lime House on the lands.
The Sale is not subject to any Duty.
Terms of Sale may be known on application to the Assignee’s Attorney.
Dated this 15th day of March, 1845.
Attorney for the Assignee, 7, North Cumberland-Street, Dublin, and Armagh.
Wednesday, 5th March, 1845.
In the Matter of David Hampton, an Insolvent.
In the Court for Relief of Insolvent Debtors.
Upon Motion of Mr. Hearn, Attorney for William Mairs and Henry Corrigan, Creditors of said Insolvent, and on reading the notes of hearing at Armagh, on the 19th February last, It is ordered by the Court, that the appointment of an Assignee in this Matter be fixed to take place before this Court, on Friday, the 15th day of April next, of which the Insolvent, and the several creditors of said Insolvent, are to have fourteen days notice by service of this Order, said services to be made according to the usual rule of this Court.
By the Court,
PETER BURROWES, Chief Clerk.
House Furniture & Shop Fixtures,
TO BE SOLD BY AUCTION,
On Wednesday, the 2d of APRIL next, by order of Mr. James Smyth, who is retiring from business, at his house, in Upper English-street, (for many years established in the Seed Trade.)
THE HOUSE FURNITURE comprises--Sofa; Mahogany, Parlour, Drawing-Room, and Bed-Room Chairs; Side Board; Dining, Card, and Work Tables; Window Curtains; Pier and Chimney Glasses; Two Eight-day Clocks; Hall Lamp; Mahogany Four-post and other Bedsteads; Feather Beds and Bedding; Nests Mahogany Drawers; Wardrobes; Clothes Presses; Dressing Tables; Dressing Glasses; Basin Stands; Commodes; Fenders and Fire Irons; Delf, China and Glass; Kitchen Furniture, &c. ALSO, THE SHOP FIXTURES--Drawers, Counters, Desks, Beams, Scales, &c., &c.
Sale to commence at 11 o'Clock, A. M. Terms at Sale,
J. T. ANDREWS, Auctioneer.
Armagh, 17th March, 1845.
(From our Enniskillen Correspondent.)
On Wednesday night last some person or persons scaled the yard wall of the Imperial Hotel, Enniskillen, and out of 36 f??? took of 28, the property of Mr. WM. R. ARMSTRONG.
SUDDEN DEATH.--On Tuesday evening last, an industrious man of the name of HIGGINS, who resided in Tonystick, in this town, went to bed in his usual good health about 9 o'clock, and on his wife retiring to rest, in about two hours afterwards, she found him dead. He has left a wife and two children to deplore his loss.
The Queen Dowager has been pleased to give £20 to assist in purchasing a bell for the parish church of Killult, county Donegal, on the memorial of Rev. D. Irvine, Rector thereof, and Rev. Mr. Norman, Curate.
WADE FOOTE, Esq., C.I. of Constabulary for Fermanagh, inspected the Lisnaskea district on Thursday last, and expressed himself highly pleased with the order, &c., of the several stations.
At a general meeting of the British Archaeological Association, held in London on the 12th inst., JOHN BELL, of Dungannon, Esq., was enrolled a member of that body.
On Wednesday, last, A. A. Murray, Esq., High Sheriff, County Monaghan, appointed Mr. Thomas Maguire, Governor of the County Gaol.
BEFORE HER MAJESTY'S COMMISSIONERS OF INQUIRY IN RESPECT TO THO [sic]
OCCUPATION OF LAND IN IRELAND.
Maurice Wilson Knox, Esq., examined.--(Page 428-431).--Resides at Rosemount near Loughgall; owns some land in the county, but holds a great deal more than he owns. Is acquainted with the district for five miles around his residence. The population is very great ; the land generally in tillage. Thinks agriculture is improving ; a better system of cropping is being carried on, and, in some degree, the drainage system.
They have got two Farming Societies--namely, at Richhill and Tartaraghan--the former of which has had a good effect on agriculture. Seven acres is about the average size of the farms in the district. The improved agriculture has had no effect upon the demand for labour; the farms are so small that the farmers generally do the labour themselves.
Knows of no farms held in joint-tenancy. Rents are generally fixed by proposal, and in some instances, the occupying tenant has a preference of the lease. Rents vary from a ginuea [sic] to 30s. per English acre--the fuel makes some difference, but it is generally very near. The poor law valuation is fully one-third lower than the rent, but he does not think that valuation was carefully made, yet it is very near Mr. Griffith's valuation, which he thinks equible on light and heavy lands. As regards the payment of rent, there is generally a hanging half-year, but that due is generally demanded three months after term.--Rents are seldom paid more than once a-year, and as soon after Christmas as possible, clearing up then to the May previous.--A great number depend upon Loan Funds, but not exactly for rent--some of them depend upon local usurers. Knows one such person who is selling meal to the tenantry at 14s. per cwt. which could be bought for 10s. in the market.
Rent is generally recovered by process--if the farm is a good one, an ejectment is generally served. Distraints seldom occur. In witness's neighbourhood, the tenancy is immediately under the proprietor--no lands there are held under a middleman.--One estate is held under the Courts, just beside him, and the condition of the tenantry upon it is much worse than on the adjoining estates.
The tenantry in this district is generally by lease, and 21 years is about the term. The covenants are generally insisted on with respect to sub-letting; but that is seldom resorted to, the farms are so small. Some of the landlords don't like to grant leases to Roman Catholics, but doesn't think this is general. A good number of leases are held at will.
Thinks the mode of tenure has a bad effect on the condition of the farms and tenantry ; for as, in a good many instances, the tenant is every April served with a notice to quit, he is afraid to make improvements. Cannot say there are any permanent improvements for farming purposes effected in his neighbourhood. The farm offices are all kept in repair by the tenants. The sale of the good-will of farms is prevalent. If the land is held by lease, of course more money is obtained for it. Some landlords will give tenants-at-will, or from year to year, liberty to sell, but there are instances in which the tenant is not allowed to dispose of his right, and where he is turned out without compensation. Knows of a person who would have been so turned out, although he had been forty years upon the land.--Thinks a tenant-at-will would be the same as a tenant on lease, under the same landlord. Can't recollect any tenant-at-will being turned off; but, in many cases, there may be a year or a year and a-half rent due, and if another person comes and says he will pay the same rent, they (the landlords) let him. In some instances, nothing is given to the former occupier, for often more is owing than the thing is worth. Is of opinion that this year the selling price of the tenant-right is considerably lower--about three or four years ago, it was about £10 per acre.--Never knew of an instance of a tenant being outbid at the expiration of a lease, and receiving no compensation from the in-coming tenant, but has heard of it. The landlords are at present very anxious to enlarge the farms--for one farmer to sell to another adjoining, if he wishes. The ejectment of a number of tenants, to make larger farms, was attempted, but did not go on--this was about two years ago, but the people rebelled against it. The tenant who was in offered to pay any sum demanded--he was a resolute man--refused to go out even for the Sheriff, and he was eventually allowed to remain. The sub-dividing of farms has not been carried on to any great extent. Does not think the condition of the large farmers is improving--a great many of them are complaining. The small tenantry are certainly not getting better in the district. It depended greatly upon weaving, and the rents were not just so great an object to the tenants as having a place to set up weaving in.--It is a manufacturing district--thinks that has failed them in a great measure, and they are obliged to look more to the land.--The small tenantry generally labour. With regard to capital, thinks they generally resort to the Loan Fund, to purchase a cow, or something of that description. The acreable rent is higher on small farms. Large farmers set an acre or two to a small farmer, taking the rent in work, and for such holdings a higher rent is charged. Thinks £3 per annum is paid for half an acre and "two bays of a house." Farm labourers get 11d. a-day. There have been no agrarian outrages in the district.
On the estate where there is a person constantly among the tenantry, showing them how to farm properly, that estate is better for the tenants than where there is no such thing, and where the agent just comes and receives the rent, and goes away again. There is one estate in his neighbourhood managed in the way he has spoken of--by an agricultural steward going about. The agents are generally non-resident--but they are not more than a day's drive or so off. The agent generally gets £2 2s. for signing a lease--the stamps are paid for besides. The yearly average of the county cess is about 2s 6d. an acre. The value of the acre would be about 25s. The landlord's proportion of the poor-rate is not in all cases allowed out of the rent. This is the case on one estate near witness. When what is called the "dead half year's" rent is paid up, the poor-rate will be allowed by the landlord. About Kilmoney the same system is carried on. Thinks the payment of the rent-charge by the landlord has no difference at all to the tenant--thinks it has been included now in all the leases. The tenants have just 25 per cent.taken off.
If the landlord would drain the lands for the tenants, it would be the great means of enabling them to pay their rents, which are very high at present. Would give more for a drained farm, held at will, than for one undrained. Would allow the landlord to charge a part of the expense of drainage upon the tenant-at-will.
Mr. ROBERT CRONE, examined (Report, pp. 431-433.)--Is linen manufacturer, residing at Derryinn, Barony of O'Neill West--very thickly populated district. The district affords as many opportunities for extensive and remunerative improvements as any other in Ireland. Lives at the edge of Lough Neagh, and when the Lough fills, the water overflows a large tract of country. It is a most ruinous thing to the tenants.
Thinks the state of agriculture in the districts is not improving. The small farmers depend more upon the linen trade than any- thing else. There is no class of people in the world more depending upon the linen trade than those in his part of the country. Thinks the average size of the farms is from four to ten acres. It is a tillage country. There is not much of green cropping, nor are there many cattle fed. There are some grazing farms, but they are greatly lost by the water--thousands upon thousands of acres are overflowed. Very few farms are held in joint-tenancy. The rents are usually fixed by contract between landlord and tenant. They are not high. People complain more of their inability to earn money by their trade than of paying their rent. The average rent of the best quality of land is about £1 per English acre--knows very little under rate. About one-third added to the Poor Law valuation would make the difference between it and the rent. When there is a year's rent due, they generally call forhalf [sic] a year's. It is usually paid in cash. The tenants are too much dependent upon Loan Funds and local usurers. The condition of people so dependent is getting worse. Thinks the system is ruining the country. Has a good deal of experience of that. Some of the people will weave night and day to get their web home, that they may get money to pay the Loan Fund--others sell very small trifles and run to pay it. They lose much time in running every week to pay it. They are not to so great an extent dependent upon local measures. If the latter lend a small sum, it is sometimes at a very high rate.
The usual way of recovering rent is by process. Arrears are not kept long standing over the tenants. The receipts for rent, so far as he knows, are generally in full--the landlords don't like to take the rent otherwise. Tenants hold under the proprietors, for the most part--the middlemen are mostly done away with. Those under the head landlord are best-off. Most of the tenants in witness's neighbourhood hold at will. Lives under Col. Verner and Lord Charlemont. A good deal of the land is held on lease.
Those who hold on lease anywhere will take an interest in the place, and improve more than where they have an interest in it. Perceives that practical effect. Thinks that if the people had good leases, the country would improve far more. Has not lately heard of any anxiety on the part of the people to obtain leases. As things were getting lower, they were ready to quit at anything. Any improvement that is made, the tenant makes it. The sale of the good-will is recognised in his neighbourhood. It would not sell so high as formerly--thinks that the value of land is decreasing. Thinks a farm of ten acres would bring £5 an acre. The population is so great, that the people will, for the accommodation (of a farm), give more than it is worth. Land is not worth more than the rent at present. One-third more would be given for an interest in a lease than for a tenancy-at-will. No consolidation of farms, nor any ejectments of tenantry, have taken place in this district. The condition of the farming population is very low at present. There are no large farmers--they are very poor--and there is no district class of labourers. The people in his neighbourhood are all weavers, and, if it were not for the weaving, bad as it is--and it has been very poorly remuerated--they would be badly off.--The corn-acre system does not prevail there. There have been no agrarian outrages. The people would like to have the landlords resident. Thinks the condition of the farming population is not improving. Thinks the county cess might be a good deal remedied--there is no tax they pay with more cheerfulness, but still they consider it very high. The poor-rate is 10d. in the pound, and the landlords allow their proportion of it in the rent.
Mr. NATHANIEL GREER, examined (Report, pp. 433-437).--Is a farmer and flax miller, high constable, and collector of county cess. Resides in the townland of Ballynahinch, near Richhill. The land in that district is good--the population dense. Holds better than 100 acres.
Thinks the state of agriculture is improving, by attention being paid to drainage, and a more regular rotation of crops than formerly. Farming Societies have been formed with good effect. The average size of farms will be about ten acres, allowing half an acre for cottiers' houses. The general mode of culture is raising potatoes and turnips, wheat, flax, and oats, with artificial grasses. There is a good deal of rotation of crops on Lord Gosford's estate, wheere he lives, and the house-feeding of cattle is increasing. The improvement in tillage increases the demand for labour. There are farms held in joint-tenancy. Tenants who hold singly are much better off. The rent is fixed by contract, and the farms are valued by the acre--generally by land surveyors.
The usual letting value, under the principal landlords, is from 25s. to 20s. the statute acre--some is let a great deal...
There are but few large farmers in this district--some of whom live comfortably and independent, though apparently not increasing in wealth. The small tenantry are not so well off as formerly, when the manufacture of linen was carried on by spinning and weaving in their own families, which is done, especially the spinning department, in the large manufactories. The condition of the labourers cannot be said to be good, yet their wages are fully as high as farmers can afford to pay, which, in this part of the country, is generally about one shilling per day.
The capital of the farmers is altogether insufficient for the operations that should be performed. The acreable rent upon the small farmers is generally greater than upon the large, especially under middlemen. Children are provided for, at the death of their parents, by the executors, if the parents have any property--if they have not, they are sent to the poor house. Labourers usually hold their cottages under farmers, by whom they are built and kept in repair. They are held from year to year, or from week to week, and are usually paid for in labour. Generally, there is from an acre to a rood of land attached, and, for cottage and land, from £2 to £4 a-year is paid. The con-acre system does not prevail to any great extent. They don't know anything about it, except for setting potatoes. Where land is let in this way, the rate is from 30s. to 40s. the rood, manured and made ready for the seed. Another kind of con-acre ground is that let to people for their manure, which they prepare themselves--this is let at from 5s. to 10s. a rood. Labourers do not appear to be too plenty--the wages are 1s. a-day.
There have been few agrarian outrages in the district. As High-Constable for the Barony of O'Neilland West, has got notice of one, committed on the 1st or 2d of March, damages laid at £30, for burning.
There is the greatest difference in the management of estates under different classes. Where the landlord is an absentee, and the agent non-resident, the land will inevitably be found out of order, the house out of repair, and the appurtenances getting worse; whereas the tenants are found prospering where they have a resident landlord, and, more especially, a resident agent, whose principal duty not only lies in collecting the rents, but whose duty should be to lead the tenantry into a better system of agriculture, by introducing a regular system of cropping, especially green-cropping, and house-feeding, whereby they will be enabled to improve their holdings, and give them less trouble at the gale day.
Has heard of a good many instances in which the landlord's proportion of the poor-rate was not allowed in the rent to the tenant. Thinks it was the case of tenants-at-will. Cannot see any difference to the tenant by placing the rent-charge on the landlord. The rent charge, in whatever shape or form, is a heart-felt grievance to a great majority of the people of Ireland, and should be paid, not in name, but in reality, by the landed proprietors, or by the sale of Church property, due regard being paid to the present incumbent's rights, or by some such other means as Government might devise. Considers that the landlord should pay one-half of the county cess and the tenants the other. Would also suggest that the landlord should pay the tenants for all permanent improvments.
There might be some shade of injustice in placing the rent- charge upon the landlord in the case of an old lease, where the tenant had covenanted to pay it; but the people think there is a deeper shade of injustice in the Church being supported by people of altogether another persuasion, who do not believe in the doctrines that they receive there. There is no question that tenants have taken their farms agreeing to pay their pro- portion of the tithe as part of the payment for that farm, without religious considerations. Considers that the tenant should give notice to the agent of any permanent improvement he was going to make, and that it should be done with the consent of both parties. Thinks it is a great hardship that the tenants should be turned out without payment for his improvement. There would be no better judges of the necessity of repairs than two respectable men--neighbours, who knew the state of the concern before those repairs or improvements were placed upon it, provided the landlord named one, and the tenant the other.
THOMAS EYRE, Esq., examined--(Report, pp. 438-440).--Resides at Benburb, county Tyrone. Is a farmer and miller--has corn mills. His residence is divided from county Armagh merely by the river. Is principally acquainted with the estate on which he resides--that of Lord Powerscourt, which is altogether in the parish of Clonfeade. It is principally tillage, and is, he should say, populous. There is a good deal of linen manufacture going on. Agriculture is decidedly improving in draining, and thinks, also, from the farms being enlarged. There is no great change in the rotation of crops.
There are no farming societies in the neighbourhood, nothing of that kind. Thinks that where there is a large farm, instead of the country being cut up in samll patches, it is improved by it. There are fewer cabins and less poverty. The average size of the farms is nine acres, and on other properties in the neighbourhood they are about the same. Should say that the rotation of crops was generally potatoes, and flax or wheat after, then oats. Does not think the improvement of the farms has had much effect on the demand for labour. There are no farms at all held in rundale or joint-tenancy. The rent is fixed by valuation, and is acreable. Thinks that on some properties, the roads is measured in a general way, and charged to the tenant. In some few instances they are not. The usual rent of the best land is probably 25s. per acre. The average is 15s. 2-1/2?d. on Lord Powerscourt's property. The Poor Law valuation is very similar to the rental there; thinks the Government valuation about one-fourth lower.
Rent becomes due in May and November, but is never demanded till the November following, when a whole year's rent is expected--from November till January. They have Loan Funds, but does not think the people depend much upon them for the payment of their rent. They are decidedly not beneficial where the agricultural tenants depend upon them. They are the ruin of the country. They have ruined many small farmers. In purchasing cattle, or other matters, the people sometimes depend upon local usurers, and they charge exorbitant interest. Does not think there are any arrears of rent long standing.
The tenure is in general immediately under the proprietors. The tenants under the proprietors are decidedly better off than middlemen. When under the Courts, a stop is put to all improvements. The tenants in witness' district generally hold at will. There have been only two leases given on the property since Lord Powerscourt came into possession. On that estate, generally, considers the tenancy-at-will as good as a lease; but should say, that a lease would be preferrable [sic]. The leases that are given are for twenty-one years and two lives he thinks.
When a tenant holds for life, there are more improvements going on than where he holds for a term of years. No lands are held in his neighbourhood on the latter tenure except those under the Church. Permanent improvements are generally effected by the tenant altogether. The landlord bears no part of the expense whatever. There have been inducements held out lately--furnishing the tenants with slates, or something of that kind--but nothing more. The demand for labour was not increasing until of late; there has been a little revival in the linen trade, and more demand for labour, but not arising from the improvement of land. Draining and other permanent improvements could be carried on to a considerably greater extent.
The tenant-right is known in the district. The land lets for 16s. an acre, and they will give from £8 to £12 an acre for the tenant-right. It is not quite so high as it was a few years ago, but still it is very high. The tenant-right is more affected by the character of the landlord than by the tenure. Some will not let the tenant get more than a certain sum, but all the landlords recognise the right. When a tenant wishes to dispose of his farm, he goes to the landlord, and the landlord says, "Get what you are offered for it, and if I do not like the tenant, I will name some other person," or something of that kind takes place. Has no doubt there are religious objecttions to a tenant. Always thought the effect of the tenant-right injurious; is not, perhaps, competent to judge--was always living in England till 1826. Considers it injurious for these reasons:--The in-coming tenant impoverishes himself by purchasing his land. He has to go and borrow money to buy the land in the first instance; and after he gets it, he gets credit where he should not do it at home. The shop-keepers say--"Oh, he has got a farm, and we may trust him." There are generally shopkeepers on the estate; and the agent generally takes care to see them paid when the party disposes of his farm.
The farms are larger than they were some years ago. When a person wishes to dispose of his farm, the agent will let the adjoining tenant have it, if he possibly can. There has been no subdividing or subletting of farms. Thinks the condition of the small tenantry around him is not improving. They have always had more or less of the linen trade--now it is reviving again; but he should say that the small tenantry are in better circumstances than the large farmers at present, if they are not altogether dependent upon their farms. Means by "small tenantry" those holding from five to ten acres; they are better off than those who hold from twenty to thirty. The large farmers have not the capital to carry on their farms. There is more or less weaving going on in almost all the houses in the district--that is, of the small tenantry. The acreable rent of the small and the large farms is exactly the same. Thinks that, at the death of the parents, the eldest of the children, who gets the farm, has to pay so much to the other children, and they emigrate to America or other places. The provision for the younger children is generally calculated according to the size of the farms, and if it is divided into eight or ten parts, the party who remains would have three out of ten parts, reckoning at so much an acre. There is a class of labourers separate from the small tenants ; they hold cottages under the larger farmers. Farmers who have fifteen acres are allowed to keep one cottier, and in proportion to the size of the farm, but none more than two or three. Nothing is done by the landlord in the way of keeping the farmers' buildings in repair. Cottiers pay an enormous rent--£2 to £3 for a rood or half an acre of ground and a miserable cabin.
Wages are falling in the district. Should think labourers are not getting more than 10d per day--that is the highest now-- from 8d to 10d. The farmers generally pay those labourers who have cottages from 4d to 5d a-day and their meat. In case they require more land for potatoes, the farmer lets it to them, at about 30s a-rood, manured. In case they have manure, they generally pay the landlord's rent--about 5s the rood. Full employment cannot be obtained by the labourers--there is not half employment for them.
There have been no agrarian outrages whatever in the district. The estates of large landed proprietors are generally managed the best where held directly under the landlord.--Where there is a resident landlord and agent, the tenantry are better off. The county cess is from 12-1/2 t 15 per cent. of the rent--it is enormous; it is a wonder it is paid so easily as it is; hear a very small proportion to the county cess--in small places like the district he alludes to, not more than two per cent. The landlord's proportion is not allowed until the year after the tenant's proportion is paid. Persons holding from year to year at the passing of the Tithe Act now pay an addition to their former rent, subject to 25 per cent., that the landlord is allowed. In leases taken out since, they have no rent-charge.
Has often thought it would be a great improvement if the landlord would pay all taxes--it would be a great relief to the tenants. They are called upon to pay taxes, at a time of the year when they are not very well-prepared for it. If the county cess were divided, similar to the poor-rate, it would be a great relief to the tenant.
Mr. Joshua Thomas Noble, examined--(Report, pp.441, 442.)--Resides in Armagh. Is assistant to Lord Charlemont's agent, and to some extent an agent himself. Was educated as a land surveyor and valuer of land. Is very well acquainted with Lord Charlemont's property, which contains 33,000 acres, and with Miss Trench's property, which contains 12,000 or 13,000 acres. The former is in Tyrone and Armagh--the latter in Tyrone, Cookstown. Miss Trench's property affords opportunities for extensive and remunerative improvements. Thinks the state of agriculture over the district with which he is acquainted is rather stationary than otherwise--improving, if any- thing.
There are no Farming Societies, with the exception of Markethill, which has had a beneficial effect in the country generally. Lord Charlemont's property is chiefly in tillage. The rent is fixed by valuation on the part of the landlord--is generally an acreable sum--always, he might say. The county roads are generally excluded in the valuation. Thirty shillings per statute acre is paid for a few spots of prime land. On Lord Charlemont's estate, there is very little land let above twenty shillings an acre--none, except one small townland. The estate is generally let lower than those surrounding it. This is not the best land in the district. Mr. Griffith's valuation is about three-fourths of the letting value of the land. The town parks in the neighbourhood of Armagh let at about 2l 15s to 3l per statute acre. In this district, rent is generally demanded about five months after it becomes due--in Tyrone, about twelve months--that is on Lord Charlemont's property. Miss Trench's is demanded in five months, and paid immediately afterwards.
In some cases, particularly in Tyrone, the tenants depend upon Loan Funds for the payment of this rent. Heard a case to-day of a local usurer selling a person meal at 14s per cwt., whilst the price in the market is about 9s 6d. There is not very much of that in the district witness is acquainted with. Dis-training is not much used.
The tenants in general hold immediately under the proprietors, and on Lord Charlemont's property, generally by lease for twenty-one years, or one life concurrent, which ever lasts longest. Thinks those who have leases improve them most, though there is not very much difference on the properties he is acquainted with--they improve freely without a lease, but the difference is in favour of leases. Permanent improvements, such as building and draining, are effected by the tenant. In some instances, the landlord gives towards them timber, slates, or lime, or one of them. The tenant-right prevails in the district. The purchase-money is always paid to the outgoing tenant. Thinks it has a beneficial effect upon him and upon the landlord. Sometimes the in-coming tenant borrows money to pay the purchase-money, in which case it has a very injurious effect. The value of land values from five to twenty-five years' purchase--has known twenty-three years' purchase given. That did not depend upon the tenure, which was an old life. Never heard, in any case, of objections made to a proposing tenant on the score of religion.
The value of the tenant-right is decreasing latterly. Nothing remarkable in the consolidation or subdivision of the farms has taken place. Cannot say he has noticed any signal difference in the condition of the large farmers, or in that of the small farmers or labourers. The acreable rent is on the same pro- portion on the large and on the samll farms. The labourers usually hold under farmers, at will, and pay their rent in work.
No agrarian outrages have occurred in this district. One has lately taken place at Clonnoe, near Miss Trench's property. In this barony, the proportion of the county cess to Mr. Griffith's valuation has been from ten to seventeen per cent. for some years past; should say twelve per cent. The rent is about one-third more than Mr. Griffith's valuation. The Poor Law valuation is very near the rent. So far as his experience goes, the landlord's proportion of the poor-rate is allowed at the first payment of rent after the payment of the rate.
Mr. Patrick M'Sloy, examined--(page 443 and 444).--Lives under Captain Bell, in the townland of Ballnagowan, county of Tyrone. Has lived there for the last three years. Had formerly a farm in Aughamullan. Was ejected from it by Mr. Blacker. The reason of the ejectment, to the best of his belief, was for a small fishing offence. The Board of Education had the fishing let to two of their own tenants; it was advertised by Earl O'Neill and Captain Caulfield, that any person found fishing on the property without permission from A. H. Caulfield would be prosecuted. Witness, with M'Donnelly, another tenant, made an engagement with Mr. Caulfield, to pay him £4 4s. a-year for the fishing, and he was to make the right of fishing to them, by Earl O'Neill's authority. The fishery had been let revious [sic] to that time (before the memory of the witness), by the school land agent, or the landlords and owners of the school land of Dungannon. Lord O'Neill never let this part of it before, but he always claimed the right to let it, and at the Petty Sessions Court, at Stewartstown, he produced his deeds : the consequence was, that there were seven summonses. On the sixth, Lord O'Neill produced his deeds and the case was dismissed in his favour, and against Mr. Blacker. Lord O'Neill's attorney then dismissed the school-lands' fishers. It was the school-lands' fishers that summoned him. They made out that it was a disputed property, and that it did not come before the Bench of magistrates; then Mr. Blacker's fishers complained to Mr. Blacker, that the Bench of Magistrates had decided unfairly. Sir Thomas Staples was applied to, and he issued a summons to hear the case again. The decision then was that the bench of magistrates was to issue no more summonses in the case, as the Board of Education had no right to claim the fishery. This was in 1839, the October following, when they processed him on the ejectment. The ejectment did not proceed to trial, because he gave up peaceable possession of the land; if he did not do this, Mr. Blacker threatened to send the sheriff's bailiff and take forcible possession. Did not get the whole sum promised. The receipt (shown by the witness) specified £11 11s. 9d. for rent, £4 3s. 2_d. for costs at sundries, and £8 3s. to Corr and Hughes. He got in all £36 5s. (Witness had previously explained that the size of the farm was upwards of thirty-three acres.) When Mr. Blacker was reminded of his promise to give £4 an acre, he said that was all the money he would give, and if witness did not like it he was to go about his business. The year's rent was £11 11s 9d. It is the custom of the place to give £4 an acre for tilled land. The marshy and bog ground sold sometimes for £10 an acre. Corr and Hughes, to whom the £8 3s. was given, were the two men who summoned witness under Mr. Blacker's authority. This was deducted off the sum he should have paid to witness. When he bought this land, it was part of the arrangement that the house should be thrown down. The materials were his, as he had purchased them. After he took possession, the bailiff and James Parry, the under-agent, took out the windows, window cases, &c., and sold them. He made half through and through the ditches to form the division of land. There were 130 perches or more formed. It was the arrangement of the estate that he should be paid for this, but he never received any money on account of it. Mr. Blacker told the tenantry that they should be allowed 6d. a perch on the rent for all the ditches they made round the farm. M'Donnelly had an ejectment served against him at the same time, but he got it revoked. There was an offer made to witness that he should be forgiven also if he would give up the land he held on the lough side of the road, and pay a certain sum, but he refused, because if he lost that part of the farm he could not put out a cow or horse to give them a drink on any other part of it. M'Donnelly's land on the lough shore was not take [sic] from him. M'Donnelly used to fish on the lough shore, and witness used to do so till Mr. Cauldfield [sic] interposed. M'Donnelly fished under Mr. Caulfield's authority, not upon his own shore, but on that of the witness. Witness does not fish upon the lough now.
The Commissioners here referred to Mr. Blacker's evidence, pages 834, 5, 6, in which that gentleman converts a considerable portion of the testimony of the former witness. In reference to his statement about not being paid 6d. a perch for the ditches he made, Mr. Blacker produced Mr. Price, the agriculturist's letter, to show that no allowance was offered for ditches made through boggy or unreclaimed land, and 6d a perch for those made in clay ground, of a certain dimension. M'Sloy had made fifteen perches of clay ditches, but they were so far under size that he was entitled to 3d. a perch only, which was paid to him. M'Cloy [sic] and Donnelly [sic] had, under colour of Lord O'Neill's authority, attempted, with others, to take forcible possession of the fishing ground. The Bench of magistrates refused to interfere, and the consequence was, that the violence of M'Sloy and his associates being resisted by the tenants of the Commissioners, the fishing grounds became a scene of riot and assault. The Board then resolved to turn them off, but before taking law proceedings, they offered them £4 per acre for their arable land, if they would peaceably leave the property and go to America. This M'Sloy and M'Donnelly rejected--an ejectment was served, but set aside on account of informality; another was served, and a decree to get possession obtained; and pending these proceedings an offer was made to them that if they would conduct themselves peaceably as regarded the fishery, they would be allowed to retain their farms on indemnifying the tenants of the Commissioners for loss sustained, and paying law expenses. M'Sloy, the complainant, refused to accede to this, and finding the Sheriff would be called on to turn him out, he quitted the premises, leaving them in a most dilapidated state. But notwithstanding all his bad conduct, they gave authority to allow him the full Board allowance merely deducting the expenses. The Commissioners, had he been so disposed, would have assisted him in going to America. M'Donnelly is living on the estate, as he complied with the terms of the Commissioners.
Robert Wray, Esq., examined--(Report pp. 445,446,)--Is a land agent in Dungannon, county Tyrone. Is best acquainted with the middle barony. It is arable. Agriculture, particularly as regards draining and manuring, is improving much. There are no farming societies. The general size of the farms is from five to twenty English acres, and the general rotation of crops is oats and potatoes. The rent is generally fixed by competent valuators on the part of the landlord; the acreable value and not the gross sum is fixed upon. The roads running through a farm are not included in the valuation. The rate per English acre is--for the best, twenty-five shillings; for the middling kind, thirteen shillings. Had compared the rent of the land and the Poor Law valuation in one electoral division, and found it nearly equal. Considers the Poor Law valuation made with care and judgment. The rent is paid after being due twelve months. It is never paid by bill, or from Loan Funds, or local usurers. There is an estate fund on the estate, managed by witness, which is applied to aid the poor in getting their stock pigs, cows, &c. The mode of recovering rent from defaulters is by ejectment, never by distress. Receipts are for a particular gale, and never on account.
The tenure is under the proprietor generally, and at will--seldom on lease. Does not think the method of tenure has had any effect on the condition of the tenants, or the improvement of the farms. There has been no application for leases. There are several perpetuity leases on one part of the property. Does not think the tenants on them were more comfortable than the others. They are occupied, with two or three exceptions, by the original lessees; the size is, on an average twenty-five acres. The permanent improvements on the estate, such as building, ditching, &c., are effected by the landlord ; improvements on roads, effected by landlord and tenant conjointly; in draining, solely by the latter. The selling of good will is not allowed. When tenants wished to remove, witness invariably gave them remuneration for improvements which they had effected, varying according to their extent. Tenants always satisfied with the compensation. Consolidation of farms has not been carried on to any great extent; sub-letting and dividing farms not carried out at all. The farm buildings are kept in repair by the tenant, but a number of labourers' cottages are built and kept in repair by the landlord; the labourers hold their cottages almost always from the landlord--at will--paying for each cottage, with half an acre attached, from £2 down to 30s. The cottages are built in a nice style and slated. Condition of the large farmers and small tenantry is improving. The labourers get more employment than formerly, and this improves their condition also. The acreable rent of the small tenantry is no higher than upon the large farms. The corn-acre system does not prevail; witness was quite opposed to it. He prevents it by notice. When a labourer requires more ground for his potatoes or his manure than he has in his garden, the farmers surrounding him sometimes allow him to put the manure on their ground, for which they charge nothing; they have the benefit of the manure afterwards. The farmers do not charge rent for this, as they consider the manure sufficient compensation. He thinks large estates better managed than small ones. The proportion of the poor-rate borne to the rent in each year is 1s. 3d. in one part, and 5d. in another. The landlord's proportion of the poor-rate is usually allowed in the next payment of rent.--It is unusual to remove tenants of good character and solvent in order to introduce others. In reference to sub-letting, witness established, when he came into the neighbourhood in 1842, a plan of purchasing out what he called the cottier tenants, to the immediate tenants, by paying so much to each, according to their immediate holding, and made the tenant take possession of it and keep it, and in that way he got rid of cottier tenants very much. The compensation was paid by the proprietor and regulated by the condition of the ground.
The Reverend Patrick Quin, examined--(pages 447,448).--Is parish priest of Kilmore, in the baronies of Lower Orior and Neilland West, county Armagh. The tenant right prevails in the district, and is generally sold at a very high value. It is recognised by landlords, and generally sells for from £10 to £12 an acre. Its [sic] sells generally for more, when there is a lease. In regard to the consolidation of farms in his neighbourhood, the Rev. James Jones, rector of the parish, has taken ten farms, of from one to seven acres in extent in his own hands. He occupies them all himself. They were not held by lease, but were glebe lands. Some of the parties ejected got £14 or £15 an acre in compensation; others he had heard had got nothing. Did not hear why, but that one of the men was a pensioner, and had 9d. a day. Thought the parties thus treated did not owe the rector more than the running half year, or whole year of rent. The tenants were required to pay this, and if they paid up to the day, they get £4 or £5 an acre; but if a year's rent, or something of that kind was due, it was as far as he understood deducted. The usual tenant-right for lands subdivided in this manner is £10 or £12 an acre. There have been other cases of removal of tenants for the purpose of substituting others. A person to whom a farm was bequeathed would not get it; the landlord or agent took it into his own hand, though there was no arrear on it, for the purpose of reselling it. It was let at will, and the tenant bequeathed it to his nephew, the agent would not give it to the nephew, even when the nephew offered to re-purchase it. The proprietor was the Rev. Hans Caulfield; the agent Mr. Richmond Pepper. The land was five or six acres, lying near Portadown. The reason alleged by the agent was, that he would not give the land to one of the sons,-- meaning that the applicant was a Roman Catholic. The land was sold by the agent to a Protestant; the agent got the purchase-money, and did not allow the tenant anything. He understood the same sum was offered by the tenant in possession as was paid by the party who got the land. There is a general belief arising from facts, that, if the land is to be sold, the landlord or agent will not let a Roman Catholic purchase; the same price is usually offered by both Roman Catholic and Protestant. Witness knew some of the men who had portions of land taken from them without compensation--James Corrigan is one, and Henry Cunningham another ; Corrigan's land lay in the glebe of Kilmore ; he had held twenty years, and had incurred expense prior to his leaving, for draining ; Cunningham had four acres.
Francis Stringer, Esq., examined--(Report, pp. 448,449),--Is a magistrate of the county and resident at Tassagh House, in Keady; could give explanation relative to some cases on the glebe of Kilmore, referred to by the Rev. Mr. Quin. The witness, after corroborating a part of Mr. Quin's evidence, proceeded to state that Mr. Jones left him to make the arrangements regarding the tenants who were to be dispossessed. Henry Cunningham held at present 25 acres 1 rood 8 perches at £36 per annum; he formerly held 29 acres and better, at £49 4s. 5d., including the rent of a quarry held also by him. The witness thought, as he had one of the largest farms, he could spare a few acres for some of those he was about to remove : he accordingly gave a portion of Cunningham's farm, three or four acres in size, to Thomas Keagham, a man of very good character. Cunningham held a quarry along with two Roman Catholics, and Mr. Jones being dissatisfied at the manner in which it was used, took it from the three individuals and gave it to a person selected by himself. Witness, in consequence of taking part of Cunningham's farm, gave him the remainder at less rent than what was paid by his neighbours. With regard to John Kelly, he received permission to take away all his crop, though he owed to Mr. Jones and his predecessor £19 11s. 4d. His rent was 5l. 18s. 9d. Mr. Stringer proceeded to mention other tenants who had been removed under the same circumstances as Cunningham, and then detailed the case of James Corrigan. Corrigan did not live upon the glebe lands at all, but on a portion of meadow which witness understood belonged formerly to the parsonage house, and should not have been let at all. He was in indepenedent circumstances, but refused to give up the meadow when required. He was ejected and made to pay the costs. Witness was at a loss to know why the names of Robert and John Clinton had been introduced into the list, as they were still living on the glebe lands.
The Rev. Patrick Quin was here further examined, and stated that part of Robert Clinton's farm had been given to a man of the name of Johnston, under the following circumstances:--Clinton gave his land to his son, who went to America; the daughter-in-law wished to follow, and the land was to be disposed to pay her way. Mr. Johnston took it by giving a certain sum in hand, and whenever the money was paid back, Johnson [sic] was to give up the land. Johnson lived at the next townland. Witness could not tell what sum he had given, but Johnston told him it was never repaid. He said Mr. Jones and Mr. Stringer promised to give it to him, but he got none of it. A man of the name of Lynch, witness believed, now had got the land.
The Rev. James Johns, examined--(Report, p. 450).--This land was mortgaged to Johnson, who was a Quaker--and Johnson stated that he gave £40 for it, though some said he did not give so much. Witness would not let Johnson hold it, because he had a large farm and was living elsewhere, and making as much out of the land as he could, and not putting anything upon it. Witness said to him, you must give up this farm, and you shall get your mortgage, and George Lynch agreed to give it him. Witness understood he had not got it, but Mr. Stringer was a guarantee for it.
Mr. David Craig, examined--(Pages 450-451).--Is a farmer in the parish of Newtownhamilton, Carntymacculagh, barony of Upper Fews, county Armagh. Is better acquainted with the parish of Newtownhamilton than the district of Upper Fews. He holds about forty acres Irish plantation measure. The extent of the district is about three miles square; considers that it affords opportunities for extensive and remunerative improvement. The Earl of Gosford improved a part of the mountain near as by turning up the whole subsoil and furrow-draining it. It appeared to remunerate after the first year. The county generally would do, if under the state of cultivation. The state of agriculture is not improving. Animal manures and lime are used. Size of the farms from three to twenty acres generally. Oats is the only grain crop; Irish hayseed, and what is called perennial, such as rye-grass, are also sown. The rent is fixed by the landlord's land-surveyor. In many cases the tenant does not know the rent until it is called for. Has seen them go in and pay down till the agent said that it was enough. When a tenant comes from a distance, he is told what he has to pay, but if a lease expires, they sometimes do not know the amount till they to pay it. During the first year they are paying the old rent--that is, there is generally the running half-year or year. The rent is an acreable one, If a road leads through the farm it is measured in. The tenants get a return of so much an acre after it is surveyed, road and all; no matter what is inside the mearings, it is included. Does not think the valuator allowed anything when there is a great deal of road running through a farm. The highest rent in the townland under witnesses landlord is 30s., medium 18s. or 20s. The best land produces in average seasons about ten or twelve barrels of oats; other kinds not five barrels. In places the poor-law valuation is under the rent, in others nearly equal. The Government valuation is one-third under the rent of a tenant at-will. He thinks the poor-law valuation made judiciously enough, but the tenants did not care so much about whether it was high-valued or not, if it was equal. No local funds in the neighbourhood-- there were usurers in plenty, but they are now nearly worn out. The usual mode of recovering rent has been lately by civil bill; the distress was preferable, because by it the goods only were taken; whereas by the civil bill, the landlord obtains the person, and can get the goods afterwards. The service of the process, of course, gives the man notice to pay; but when he is processed, he knows it is for the rent due, and to what time, and how much. There is no middlemen, so far as he is aware. When leases expired, he did not know of any new ones granted by the landlords round the locality. Tenant-right is less prevalent than formerly, and it is diminishing in value. It generally sells from 2l. to 5l. an acre.; but if the land is held in lease more is given according to the rent. If an original lease, such as he held under, it would sell for more than 35l. an acre, at a rent of five shillings and a lease for perpetuity. Thinks the tenant-right has a good effect on the country. Neither the large farmers nor the small tenantry are improving, and the labourers are bordering on pauperism. The acreable rent is no higher on the small tenantry than on the large farms. The labourers get sixpence a day for two seasons of the year, but they have a great deal of idle time. They seldom get any more ground when they want it, except con-acre potato ground, for which they pay about 8l. per acre. That is for well-manured land. Witness has land let by con-acre--considers himself well paid at 8l. an acre--he has no family to labour for him, and the men labour for this potato ground. The county cess is, in general, about one-tenth of the rent of those holding at will. Knows this because there is a Grand Jury collector for each barony, who gives the amount of what comes to the townland to a person who applots the cess. There have been no agrarian outrages in this district lately. The last was the murder of Mr. Quin's steward. The poor-rate is about one-tenth of the rent. The landlord's proportion of the poor-rate is usually allowed on the first payment of rent after they pay their poor law tax to the collector. The next rent after that the landlord pays witness what is coming to him. Some do not allow it. The placing [of] the rent charge on the landlord has benefitted the witness. He thinks it better than the way it was before under the Compensation Act ; but where there were tenants-at-will he knew of instances where the tenants said, according to law, the agent of the landlord or the rector could not sue them for tithe, when the combined not to pay ; the agent sent out a valuator over the land, and sometimes put on tithe and sometimes more upon it. The landlord witness lives under charges no tithes for tenants-at-will. He had reduced the rents on the farms since. Last year there was a reduction of 2s. 6d. in the pound. Witness considers that the Grand Jury collector of cess ought to be dispensed with, and thus a considerable expense be saved. Witness knew that the County Surveyor and Deputy County Surveyor did not do their duty; the former got £300 or £350 a-year, without seeing the road, or the weight of gravel put upon it by the contractor. The reasons that the conditions of all classes was getting worse were, the failure of crops, on account of the district being cold and mountainous, and because the rent was put on by a surveyor, who was ignorant of the localities and rated too high. This complaint is general, and he thinks well grounded. The government valuators were all ignorant of the soil as the other valuators, but their valuation comes nearer what is right because it is lower.
In the supplement to the Report page 15, there is the evidence of W. C. Quin, Esq., the gentleman alluded to by the last witness as having a land-steward who was murdered. Mr. Quin, when examined, stated that his steward Mr. Powell, had never been employed by him to serve notices or make distraints. He (Mr. Quinn) thought it probable that notices may have been served on four of the persons who were to be more or less affected by these arrangements whenever they should be carried into effect, farms having been procured for them on other parts of the estate; and the notices may have been served under the apprehension that the parties might object to vacate their old farms at the time agreed upon. It is possible, too, that the agent without his knowledge may have served notices for the purpose merely of getting in the rents. However this was, Mr. Powell was not at all concerned in the matter. There was a meeting of magistrates and landed proprietors after Mr. Powell was murdered, and they passed the following resolution:--'Resolved unanimously, that we consider Mr. Quin, the owner of the property in the improvement of which Mr. Powell was employed, to be entirely free of any hardship or severity, and to have in every respect conducted himself with kindness and humanity towards his tenantry.'
In the supplement to the Report (page 1) there is the statement of Henry Lindsay, Esq., County Surveyor of Armagh in reply to Mr. Craig's evidence; it is as follows:--
'In reply to your letter of the 31st ult., with an extra, from the evidence of Mr. David Craig, I beg to say, whoever he may be, he is substantially incorrect. I see all the public roads myself, but not at the same period of the year, as that would be impossible. The stones are measured for all important roads, and for all others, as far as two assistants can attend to it ; but it sometimes happens, through the ignorance of a contractor, that the stones are spread without measurement, and in all such cases where I have any doubt, I never certify the amount without an affidavit or declaration of the party that he put the quantity on. With respect to parish roads I have heretofore left the management of them to my assistants, as many of those roads are narrow, that I could not go over them even if I were inclined and up to this time, I have only heard of one serious complaint about the conduct of an assistant in looking over a parish road. But as the Grand Jury at last assizes recommended that I should, as far as possible, look after the attendance to such roads, this department of the business may be better conducted in the future.
William Paton, Esq., examined.--(Report, p.p. 453, 454)--Resides in Armagh, and is agent to the Lord Primate, and a magistrate of the county. Wishes to confine his statement to the subject of the markets of Armagh. There is a general deduction made from every pig brought by the farmers, amounting to ten pounds from the weight. Believes this is the case in all the market towns in the North of Ireland. The deduction is made as for feet and heads; it is made on the seller here; and the same takes place in Belfast when they take the pork and sell it to the wholesale merchant. Butter is subject to a similar deduction; when a firkin is weighed there is no tare for the cask, which is correct enough; but for draught or beamage they take two pounds off; then they take one pound for each quarter of a cwt. that it weighs, which comes to about five pounds upon the firkin. The corn sold is usually at the buyer's store, and abuses have frequently been complained of. It is usually weighed when raised to the loft, and he has been informed that after being weighed in the market, it has been weighed at the store, and the weight found less, although the seller complained it was too late. Considers that the same system of exaction extends to many articles sold by the farmer. To obviate it, all grain should be weighed in the market. When grain is weighed there, there is an allowance given so that it must turn the beam. Pork is all weighed at the market crane, and he never heard any complaint about it. As respects the county cess, since Mr. Griffith's valuation came into operation--that is since the cess was a poundage upon it--houses here pay from five to seven times more than they used to do. Formerly, Armagh contributed from 300l. to 400l. a-year to the barony cess ; now, he believes it is from 1,500l. to 2,000l. The effect has been to put a stop to building in this town. The proportion of the houses returned vacant at the census in 1841 was 221. Mr. Griffith's valuation is about 2s 6d in the pound; if the houses were all occupied, it would of course be less. Thinks the rate under the 9th George IV. is 1s on the actual rent, which may be about equal to 1s 6d on Mr. Griffith's valuation, bringing those two up to 4s. These rates are exclusive of the poor-rate. The barony collectors are generally men not brought up to business, and it is seldom that the same person collects for two consecutive levies. Besides, they employ an inferior cla? to collect as deputies. Considers if there was one collector f? the whole county, a salaried officer paid £500 a-year, wi? expenses, and so on, and that if he had an office where the pe?ple would come and pay their cess, it would be so much bette?. Amount of cess levied off the county is about 20,000l. per annum; taking the average of the last seven years; and 9d in ?? pound was paid for collecting it. If the people did not send their money, when the applotters had finished their applotment they should send them to the collector to be printed and poste? so that every person might know what his cess was; the collector could then go back to each barony with the power of d?training for what cess he did not then receive. This wou? cause the collection of the cess to be begun a month or two e?lier. Does not think this would be a hardship; the syst? would produce a great saving. Suppose 6d a pound for collecting it paid to the collector, it would yield him a salary o? 500l. a-year, and 200l. a-year for expenses. Thinks also tha? county cess and poor-rate might be amalgamated, and connected in one levy as deductions from landlords. Suppose the Government paid the police constabulary, and relieved the county of that outlay, that would be about an equivalent to the rate-payer for the deduction. There might also be a deduction for poor-rate from the landlord's rent of one-fourth instead of one-half.
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