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Bent position without farther molestation , or infringement on their recognised rights . Itis only by united efforts that such , can be accomplished . " From the perusal of the circular referred to , I really do not estimate very highly the character of these men ; and , as to their conduct , I should rather decline making one in a band of thirty-two to invade a Glasgow office in the manner they have done in London . 2 . Misleading you , # . —To prove that your position was justly taken in your little sub ., I here give an extract from the Notth British Mail of the 13 th
instant : — " Farewell Dinner . —On Saturday , thfe 4 th instant , Mr . Robert Dickeoti , manager of the printing department of the North Britiih Mail , was entertained ^ at dinner in the Itose Tavern and Dining-house , Argyle-etreet . There were upwards of thirty gentlemen present . Robert Gunn , E-q ., managing proprietor of the North British Mail , fulfilled the duties of chairman ; while those of croupiers , " &c . &c . " The company having partaken of an excellent dinner , the usual loyal and patriotic toasts were given and responded to . The Chairman then called for an especial bumper to the tpaet of the evening . In proposing the health of Mr . Dickeon , the chairman passed a high
eulogiumon his energy of character , integrity of purpose , and eminent business qualifications . He also gave a short history of the circumstances which had led to the appointment which Mr . Dickson had obtained in the metropolis . The proprietors of one of the London morning journals having heard of the efficient and economical system with which the North BHtish Mail was printed , he ( the chairman ) had been waited on , and had been made acquainted with the system of management and the comparative cost of the London press . The result was that , by his viewB and advide , Mr . Dickson had received th * honourable and lucrative appointment of
taking charge of printing oneof the morning papers , and of renovating the system at present pursued . He wa « satisfied that , whatever opposition the London operatives might give to the present undertaking , Mr . Dicksort would not be many weeks in London till he received the thanks of the London compositors , as a body , for having put an end to a system a 8 ruinous to the workmen as it was injurious to the employers . He was Confidentfrom his experience of the operative printers in Glasgow , from their steadiness and general character—that they would gain respect in London ; and , if any body of men could do the work they had undertaken , it was those Who went under the leadership of Mr . Dickson . * ...
" Mr . Dickson made an appropriate reply , in which he alluded to the opposition he was likely to receive from a class interested in keeping up the present rotten system pursued in the London daily papers . But he was sure that the great majority of the profession would be so benefited by the changes it was his intention to introduce , that he , and those who acted along with him , would yet receive their heartfelt thanks . By the present system , Workmen , though equally proficient in their business , did not receive more than a fifth or a sixth of the
remuneration that others did . He meant to abolish that inequality , and introduce a system of justice and ^ duality to the men , and economy and efficiency to the employers . One of the disagreeable things connected with the matter was , that , not having confidence in those at present employed in the establishment he would be under the necessity of removing them entirely , and replacing them with tried men from Scotland ; yet he had not the least doubt but that he would receive the full support of the London workmen the moment they understood his plans . He resumed his seat , " &c .
Now , Sir , coupling the above extracts -with what was stated by the manager when he expressed himself eorry at parting with the late printer and his companionship ( and whose efficiency he had been continually lauding ) , that "it was not for a trifle the chnnge had been made—the staving would be £ ' 2000 a-year " [ I enclose the names of the parties ] ; ftnd tripling it with the try-on mude four years ago , in the same office , to reduce the compositors' wages , which attempt failed , and the late companionship returned ufter a fortnight ' s absence , —tuking , I say , all the circumstances into consideration , what else can be inferred but that the men were to bo overworked
and , of course , underpaid ? Oertes that man must be as verdant as the famed paatures in the valo of lamerick who could suppose that this change was the mere freak of the proprietor of a thriving property to play at ducks and drakes with 200 sovereignB , Which it must have cost to etilint the men , pay their expences to London , and pay the late printer his month and the companionship their fortnight ' s money . 8 . Writing a Vituperative Communication . —I have carefully read my communication of the 18 th , and could mid neither anger nor vituperation . This charge in tho letter muht either have boon caused by the blind rage of the writer or a consciousness of what ho deserved . 4 , Disapproval of Scotch Corhpositora being employed
its even-handed justice , there are no laws against the conspiracy of employers , but plenty of them to punish the workmen if they attempt anything of the kind . What would be the consequence if fifty men employed on a daily paper—properly remunerated and on the best of terms with their printer—were clandestinely to procure themselves situations , and leave their employment at a moment ' s notice ? Every one of them would be liable to severe punishment . This is exactly a case in point with what I hare described . Then , why should the conspirator with a well-lined breeches-pocket escape punishment ? Proht the Onl
in London . —Men in printing-offices axe reupeoted or suspected according to their " conduct and character , and not in reference to their" country Thet * was once a captain of a man of-War who was an Irishman , and when an Irish cHlpfit was brought before him he would say , I'll flog you for country ' s sake . I may , perhaps , be actuated by some such feeling towards these rrieh ; for the " land of the mountain and flood " is the " land of my sires . " So much for the narrow-minded remark about country . And now , Mr . Editor , I leave it to your judgment to say whether I have or not exposed a deeply-laid and clandestinely-carried-out conspiracy to reduce the wages of labour . But in this country , which boasts
perty ought to be protected ; and so oug y property of the working man—his labour . But a case so glaring must call forth your liberal pen , so I leave it , tor the present , in your hands . I am occasionally addressed as a " free and independent " elector ; that title is a taunt and an insult , if the only property I possess—the labour of my hands and head—be not deemed as worthy of protection as that of my representative . I shall prepare a petition to the House of Commons , embodying all the facts of the case , and send it to one of the members for the borough in which I reside , as a first step ill an agitation for an equalization of the combination laws .
They say they have been paid what is right , and according to the scale framed by the Typographical Union . Then the Glasgow plan boasted of at the dinner has not been introduced , the paper must be costing rathe ? more than it did before , and it is a game of ducks and drakes after all . But really I cannot believe this : it is too much of an insinuating assertion . What a funny thing to bring men upwards of 400 miles , and pay them as well , if not better , than the old hands—and save £ 2000 a-year out of it ! But I must not be too fast or too funny here . Perhaps they will , as I have done , produce the proof—the
documents , drawn up by a W . S ., signed , sealed , and stamped , and giving them stations for life at the Post . Lucky Scotchmen!— if they can do this . If not , they are fools for having left their situations and country on such a spec . Let them remember that Crosby ' s situations for life on the same paper lasted a fortnight * Another panderer to avarice may out-Dickson Dickson , and bring A band of chosen men who can be wound up to go more hours than my father ' s countrymen . This is no idle supposition . Men capable of acting as they have done ftiust expect to be paid in their own coin .
And all the London morning papers were expected to adopt the Glasgow plan ! I hope the concoctore have reckoned without their host . Can it be that the free-trade press has been endeavouring to procure a oheap loaf , to tantuliro the working man , from its very cheapness , by trying to keep it further from his grasp ? Will the Times and Chronicle—papers that hare spent princely sums in exposing , with a view to its remedy , the hideousneBB t » t poverty existing amongst the
labouring poor—join in such a conspiracy ? I cannot suppose that the London press would bo disgrace itself ; and I hopo to see every respectable daily paper in London repudiate \\ m supposition that its proprietors would acquiesce in adopting a system by which their valuable properties would be jeopardised , their characters an gentlemen tainted , and their efficient and intelligent workmen become degraded and pauperized .
Sir , I am afraid I have been carried beyond the limits that you can afford so huinbla an individual as the writer of this letter ; but I fuel deeply for the welfare of a clans amongst whom I have spent forty yours of my life ; and I feel truly grateful for the manner in which you havo tilken up thin BUbjcot . You have thus proved your sincerity in the cause of the working man , by opposing the crushing power of capital in Its inroads upon labour in a case where its success Would put money in your own pocket . I trust that your example will be followed by Borne of your older contemporaries who have been loud in . their sympathies for tho working claHHen . Wishing you that buccosh which your enlightened and liberal labours merit ,
I am , Hir , j'our greatly obliged servant , A OoMl'OHltOtt . P . S . —Ishall , with your perminBion , shortly give an account of the inntitutioiiH founded by the printers of London—tho Printers' Pension ( Society , tho AlmshoiiHO Fund , and tho Typographical Widow , Orphnn , and Nominee Fund ; Which infttitulioiiA Would , if tho exterminating system t havo here depicted wero suffered to obtain , bo cither much shuken in their usefuhiOBH or ontiroly destroyed .
THE TAX UPON NEWS . Norwich , Jan S 3 , 1851 . Sir , —Your avowed sympathy -with the efforts now making to obtain the repeal of the " Taxes upon Knowledge , " leads me to hope that you will readily allow a brief trespass upon your columns fof the purpose of exposing that which I cannot help regarding as the most atrocious feature of those taxes—the powerj vested in the Board of Commissioners of Inland Revenue , of compelling the appendage of the penny stamp upon all journals containing paragraphs of public information . The issue of the Household Narrative of Current Events without a stamp , under the editorship of Charles Dickens , led to the hope that the board would be brought into direct collision with a quarter sufficiently influential to jeopardize the existence of its powers . It seemed , however , desirous of rendering those powers fetill more odious , by establishing the oft-repeated charge of partiality in their exercise . With the view of obtaining some explanation re . specting the anomalous position in Which the board had thus placed itself , I wad induced to trouble it with the following letter : — " Norwich , Jan . 18 , 1851 .
" Sir , —We Bhallfeel greatly obliged if you will inform us whether the privilege of inserting articles containing news has been conceded by the board to monthly periodicals . " We have been led to make this enquiry from observing that Mr . " Dickens ' Household Narrative has been issued for several months without the usual newspaper stamp . " Yours most respectfully , for Jarrold and Sons ( publishers ) , " C . J . BtttTTING , ( Late editor of the Norwich Reformer , in which the insertion of news was prohibited by the board ) . " J . Timm , Esq ., solicitor of Inland Revenue . " The reply is subjoined . Your readers will see to what extent it notices the cause of the enquiry : —
" Inland Bevenue , Somerset-house , London , January 2 i , 1851 . " Gentlemen , —In reply to the enquiry contained in your letter of the 18 th instant , ' whether the privilege of inserting articles containing news has been conceded by the board to monthly periodicals , ' I have to inform you that no such concession has been made . " I am , Gentlemen , your obedient servant , "J . Timm , " Solicitor of Inland Bevenue . " Messrs . Jarrold and Sons , Norwich . "
Ishall refrain from commenting upohthe injustice which this proceeding involves , further than to observe that the reply is , in one palpable sense , untruthful , and therefore destitute of that high-toned morality which ought to characterize the proceedings Of government officials . The " privilege " is conceded to some ; from others it is withheld . A direct infringement of the law upon the part of a literary giant is tolerated , whilst mere pigmies are regarded as fair game for the exercisft of its powers . Surely Charles Dickens cannot be altogether satisfied with his position ; neither ought any lover of fair-play to afford a tacit assent to the display of such glaring partiality .
Trusting that the Board of Commissioners will not cease to be harrassed in the exercise of its functions till its disgraceful" occupation ' s gone , " I remain , yours respectfully , C . J . Bunting .
THE ECCLESIASTICAL COURTS . Brighton , Jan . 13 , 1851 . Sih , —It is the peculiar characteristic of the Ecclesiastical Courts that they profess to punish spiritual sins ( pro salute anima >) rather than temporal crimes , by penance and excommunication , or by payment of a sum of money by way of commutation ; yet their jurisdiction comprehends causes of a civil or temporal nature—some partaking both of a spiritual and civil character , and some purely spiritual . In the first class are testamentary and matrimonial causes , questions purely of civil right , which are neither spiritual nor affecting the Church Establishment . Old Blftck » tone says that these causes , «• partly from the nature of the injuries complained of , and partly from the clerical mode of treating them , soon beenme too gross for the modesty of a lay tribunal . ' The second class comprises causes of a mixed description , as suits for tithes , church rates , seats , ami faculties .
The third class includes church discipline , and the Correction of offences of a spiritual kind . They *™ procoeded upon in tho way of criminal suits , for tho lawfiil correction of manners . The ordinary Ecclesiastical Courts , Curias Chrtstianitatis , are- 1172 in numbor . These are tho I r ° ~ Vincial Court * , being in tho province of Canterbury ; tho Court of Arches , * or Bupretne Court of Appeal ; the Prerogative ) Court ; and tho Court of Peculiars ; and in the province , of York , tho Prerogative and Chancery Courts . Tho Diocesan are tho Consistonal Courts of each diocese exercising general jiiriwlio _ -
119 ffifte & * && «? [ SATifepAf ;
• Mr . Out ) 11 dtttted in hia speech that tint men who left Glatifrow Wrr « doing nothing injurioiiH to the profoimlon , and that they liait received tli « aauottoit of the Glasgow Society . This id not correct . At ft meeting of the eocioty , four or five clayti previous to the ftboVe dinner , a motion wan made repudiating in Htroil / r term * the coiuluul of th « men . 'limy ( the engaged ) , mtein ^ that fkudli rtaolutioik wan Hire to be curried , "aid thai they would rcotAloidcr their engagement . And thilA they cdcup . 'd from Olaagow with the negative Munition of the society ; for which limiMrmy the society !¦ now Very lorry . Hut . even if they lmd * e « el *«« t the- full satiation of tluslr brethren , that < 1 oe « not » ker the oa » e . The London ntiiile wan agreed upon hetwfeon matt tern ad men ) anU it ia fur uvery town to regulate its ow )> trade itaatfcrrt .
• " The Court of Affihon , anciently held in the church oftl "' Virgin Mary , was no called ab ArCuatrt emtrtitt . or » roin " «>" Church , by rcuaou ol the steeple or cilojhier thereof rfcla «« £ the top with Htoiui pilluti , Ui Cushion of tt bow bent » rohwi «« - Ayllifc ' u Partrgon .
Leader (1850-1860), Feb. 1, 1851, page 112, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/l/issues/vm2-ncseproduct1868/page/16/