The Erne Packet. Enniskillen, August 28 1817.
Irish Manufacture.—On Tuesday last, three men and a woman were committed to Wexford goal, by A. H. Jacob, who were detected by that active Magistrate, in the neighbourhood of Enniscorthy, in the act of manufacturing leaves of alder, birch, &c. so as to resemble the various kinds of tea imported from China. About two hundred weight of this deleterious article, together with the sheets and blankets used in the process of drying, were lodged in the Custom-house stores.— Wexford Herald.
MOST IMPORTANT. It has long been a desirable object with the Public to have the Currency of the two Countries assimilated. We understand that the thing is effected by the most simple process. The Bank of England has agreed to receive the Notes of the Bank of Ireland the same as their own. To illustrate this subject it is only necessary to state, that a Merchant in Dublin, instead of paying 10 per Cent, for a Bill to meet his engagement in London, may transmit Irish Notes and they will be received as British Currency. It may be a “wonder of nine days,” but Ireland reaps the advantage,—it raises her property 10 per cent, in price, in the great market of the world, and if it be true, as we are confident it is, to owe to the present Minister, on this account alone, more than to all their predecessors since the Revolution. We do not choose at this time, to enter into any particular discussion of the matter. We merely announce the circumstance, and it admits a conclusion of the largest import, which we shall soon fully explain. —Dublin Journal.
HARVEST WEATHER, &.
LIMERICK, AUGUST 23. NEW WHEAT.—Unfavourable as the past rainy weather must have been towards the maturity of all Irish grain we felt pleasure in seeing, at this day’s market new red wheat, of prime quality. — It belonged to Mr. William Watson, near Nenagh, and is enough to shew agriculturists what may be expected from an Irish soil, when properly cultivated, and the seed thereof seasonably deposited. —Chronicle.
A barrel of new oats, reaped fifteen days since, the property of A. French St. George, Esq. appeared in Galway Market, on the 12th inst.
A Cup potatoe, weighing nearly one pound three quarters, was grown at Whitehall, North Liberty of Limerick, the seat of Joseph E. Vize, Esq. It is a very extraordinary natural production at this early period—the stalk was quite green, and would therefore be much larger if left in the ground.
BELFAST, AUGUST 23. Yesterday, an unusual quantity of Oatmeal was brought to market—probably about 150 bags, and little disposition evinced to purchase so that a great quantity remained unsold. The prices were from 23s. to 24s. 6d. per cwt. There was also so large supply of Potatoes, that the market was crowded to excess. They were generally of an excellent quality, and sold for 3½d. to 5d. per stone.
Yesterday Mr. Younghusband commenced reaping a large field of Potatoe Oats, at his house at Ballydrain, near this town. The Oats appear extremely fine, and unusually productive. Another field of Oats, near the old Race Course, between this town and Lisburn, is already partly cut down.
DROGHEDA. AUG. 21. Most of the Liverpool and Preston traders have arrived this week. The markets are in this town most plentifully supplied. Beef and Mutton from 5d. to 6d. per pound. Potatoes, best quality, 7d. per 211b. Bread, from American flour, 41b. in the Shilling Loaf.—We are happy to state that trade in the above ports is reviving, and business assuming an animated appearance.
The heavy rains that fell last, and beginning of this week, lodged several fields of luxuriant corn, but very little if any injury, we hear has been sustained. The cold winds from the N. and W. that prevailed for some weeks, has shifted to the, S. E, and the temperature of the atmosphere is more genial. Though the sun is partially obscured, the wheats and oats are fast arriving at maturity, and a few weeks will bring in abundance of new corn. Potatoes are at 5d. 6d. and 7d. per stone. Very little grain appeared in the corn market for some weeks and the prices nearly nominal. Our linen market has been brisk for the last fortnight and extensive purchases made for England.
WINDOW LIGHT TAX. A Vestry was held in the Parish of St Michan, Dublin, on last Wednesday week, for the purpose of preparing represent a representation to Mr. Vansittart upon the subject of the Window Tax.
At one o’clock, the Churchwardens took the Chair, and Mr. Wm. Smith immediately rose, and after observing that the subject upon which the Household were assembled, had so recently engaged the attention, as well as that of all the Parishes in the City, and was so generally and well understood, that he felt it would not be necessary form to occupy the time of the meeting by dwelling upon it—proposed a resolution for the appointment of a Committee to wait upon Mr. Vansittart with an address upon the subject of the Window Tax. This mot was immediately carried and the Committee appointed.
Mr. Smith then produced the draft of an Address to Vansittart congratulating the Right Hon. Gentleman on his arrival in this country— complimenting him upon the motives of his journey—representing the distressed state of the Parish of Saint Michan, in which one half of the houses, (amounting in the whole to near 2,000 houses were either shut up, or inhabited by persons unable to pay rent or taxes—in which 12,000 individuals out of a population of 22,000, were reduced from competence, in many cases from affluence, to poverty—and declaring the utter inability of the Parishioners to pay the Window Tax any longer; and therefore praying a repeal of that oppressive impost. After some consultation, this address, being seconded by Mr. Dillon was agreed to, and the Churchwardens were directed to write to the Chancellor of the Exchequer requesting him to appoint a time for receiving the address.
(The window tax was a property tax based on the number of windows in a house. It was a significant social, cultural, and architectural force in England, France, Ireland and Scotland during the 18th and 19th centuries. To avoid the tax some houses from the period can be seen to have bricked-up window-spaces (ready to be glazed or re-glazed at a later date). In England and Wales it was introduced in 1696 and was repealed in 1851, 156 years after first being introduced. France (established 1798, repealed 1926) and Scotland both had window taxes for similar reasons. The tax was introduced in England and Wales under the An Act for granting to His Majesty several Rates or Duties upon Houses for making good the Deficiency of the clipped Money in 1696 under King William III and was designed to impose tax relative to the prosperity of the taxpayer, but without the controversy that then surrounded the idea of income tax. At that time, many people in Britain opposed income tax, on principle, because the disclosure of personal income represented an unacceptable governmental intrusion into private matters, and a potential threat to personal liberty. In fact the first permanent British income tax was not introduced until 1842, and the issue remained intensely controversial well into the 20th century.)
ASCENT AND DESCENT OF THE BALLOON. On the 20th, after repeated postponements, the Balloon ascended from Portobello Barracks with Miss Thompson and Mr. Livingston. The hour had been fixed for half-past one o’clock, but the necessary preliminaries of inflation, adjusting the car &c., were not concluded before half-past three, at which time it was loosed from its fastenings and went off in admirable style, and with great rapidity, taking a southerly direction. The great anxiety of the immense crowd which had assembled within the Barrack enclosure, seemed to be, to see Miss Thompson enter the car, and prepare for her aerial flight—to accomplish this, the pressure was inconceivably great upon those who superintended the arrangements preparatory to the ascent. This lady displayed a perfect composure and self-possession at the time of her departure from the platform, to which the Balloon had been carried, and the apparent intrepidity of her companion was likely to confirm her confidence in the security with which she committed herself to atmospheric space. The shouts and cheerings of the multitude, both within and without the barracks, served to encourage her resolution, and she waved her hand and bade adieu, with seeming gaiety, as she ascended. In four or five minutes after the Balloon departed, a Parachute, to which was attached a small land Tortoise, was separated from it, and in a short period reached the earth and in seventeen minutes from the period of ascent, the Balloon descended on the boundary of the demesne of Marley, the seat of J. D. Latouche, Esq.—the hospitable proprietor of which had watched their progress, and was prepared to assist and receive them and he provided for all the claims their situation presented, with his characteristic kindness and urbanity. The voyagers partook of a dinner at Marley, after which they returned to town, where they were warmly welcomed by their friends. This short trip was in consideration of the course which the Balloon had necessarily taken, and which would have brought it very expeditiously to the sea-coast, and Mr. Livingston, with a laudable gallantry, did not wish to expose his fair partner to the peril which might result from entering upon a marine region, and abridged his voyage in consequently. No accident of any kind occurred.
The attention of Colonel Pelly, and the Officers and men of the 16th Lancers, was friendly and unremitting while the Balloon was preparing for the ascent. Miss Thompson wore a striped sarsnet dress and Spanish hat and feathers. (The first ascent in Ireland was from Ranelagh Gardens in Dublin in 1785 by Richard Crosbie.)
DIED. In the town of Monaghan on the 18th inst. of a fever, Mr. Robert Jackson, Merchant, universally esteemed in life and lamented in death—He was an affectionate husband, an indulgent father, a generous master, a pleasing companion, and an honest man.
Last week, Mr. Con. O’Donnell of Ballyshannon, innkeeper.
On the 13th inst. in the 59th year of his age at his residence Annagheen, near Carrickmacross, greatly regretted by a numerous and respectable circle of friends and acquaintances James Kelly, Esq.
It is under impressions of extreme concern that we have to state the death of Mrs. Richardson, wife of Major Richardson of Rusfad (Rosfad) in this County, and sister to Lieutenant-General Archdall. She expired on the evening of Friday last, after a short but severe illness, in a malignant fever, which baffled all the powers of medicine, and the best efforts of professional skill. This excellent and lamented lady, it may be truly said, fell a victim to her charitable feelings, having caught the infectious and fatal disease, which took away her valuable life, from some of the numerous sick and indigent poor, who sought and found daily relief at Rusfad. Her remains were deposited in the family vault at Templemahery (Templemaghery) (Ardess) on Sunday.
On Thursday night last two cows, one of them belonging to the Rev. Mr. Kernan, were stolen out of a field contiguous to this town. In the fair of Lurganboy on the following day, the thieves were detected offering the cattle for sale, and have been since lodged in Gaol. One of them proves to be a man named John Rorke, who was tried for an offence of a similar nature so recently as the late Assizes here.
We lament to state that, for several nights past, very considerable damage has been done in the potatoe fields situated near this town, by some nocturnal prowlers who destroy the plant, to procure such portion of its produce as is worth removing. The institution of a nightly watch has been adopted in many places, as a protection against the depredations of these wretches, and is a prudent and necessary measure, which should be resorted to everywhere under such circumstances.
A white Swallow has been observed for some days past flying about Castlecoole demesne. Its plumage is pure snow-white, and the beak somewhat of a dark colour. The bird, which is altogether very beautiful, is rather larger than the common species of swallow, and seems to be an object of envy and persecution among its associates of homelier garb.
A malignant fever is at present raging in many parts of the kingdom. Its effects are comparatively unfelt in this neighbourhood, although many cases of a milder character of the disease appear among the lower classes, and a few respectable families have been visited by me calamity.
The weather, since our last, though variable, and rather more moist than could be wished, has, nevertheless, been on the whole pretty favourable to the maturation of the farm crops, which everywhere exhibit, a weighty ear, and a ripening appearance. Yesterday was uninterruptedly fair, and the fineness of this morning would seem to justify the most favourable presages.
Extract of a Letter from Lifford dated 21st instant. “I had a carpenter doing a little job, and I feel much in assuring you that he had, to-day, to go to Strabane to assist in making coffins for the dead and dying in that town and neighbourhood of the contagious Fever now prevalent there. There is also a fever in our Gaol, and there are also several cases in town. The Sick- Report yesterday stated 63 ill in the Fever Hospital.
ENNISKILLEN EXECUTION. Last Thursday, Thomas Broughton, pursuant to his sentence at the late Assizes held here, was executed from the drop in front of the New Gaol. The morning war unusually fine and the sun rose bright for every eye but the unfortunate criminal’s. Stimulated by a curiosity which, however it may be censured as cruel, we would not wish to see repressed, in consideration of the appalling lesson it may bring under the eyes of many of our fellow creatures, callous to ordinary admonition, the population of the surrounding country, for many miles, assembled to witness the awful ceremony. The space immediately in front of the Gaol was occupied by the military, consisting of a troop of Dragoons, with a Company of the Royal Scots and the immense concourse of spectators of both sexes extended a considerable distance to right and left,, and in front, as far as the Fort Hill, the sides and summit of which appeared one animated mass.
The Rev. Mr. Duffy, R.C., Chaplain of the Gaol, passed a great part of the preceding night in the cell of the criminal, fortifying his mind against the approaching trial with the sublime consolations of religion; and with such happy effect, that the penitent seemed already almost enfranchised from his mortal coil; in contemplating and desiring the eternity before him. His affections were, in fact wholly disengaged from the things of this world; and he was heard more than, once to regret the few hours delay prescribed by the formalities of the law under such circumstances. Previous to leaving the cell his wife and some of his children, were permitted to take their last fare well, and here, even amid this trying scene, so calculated to wring a father’s heart, he preserved the mastery over his feelings, and that unshaken firmness and composure, which astonished at once and edified the beholders. In every stage of the proceedings his fortitude, leaning upon a Redeemer’s love, and lifted up by a humble confidence in His mercy regained equally unmoved; and the deep, settled resignation of his mind, to a casual observer, might have appeared the effect indifference, or insensibility. Shortly after the departure of his family, he was conducted to the execution room, accompanied by the Rev. Messrs. Kernan and Duffy who there read the sublime affecting office suited to the occasion of a parting soul. There was something beyond what is merely of this earth—something spiritual and heavenly—in the moment. The terrors and ignominy of a public death—the crimes which incurred such punishment—faded from the picture, and the heart only contemplated the spectacle of the frail creature returning to the bosom of his Creator—of the sinner approaching the feet of his Saviour, through the path of repentance and under the mediation of religion.
After some time spent in further acts of devotion, the fatal hour was announced. The prisoner, with the most perfect collectedness, again joined with the Reverend Gentlemen, and some others, present, in fervent prayer. He freely, acknowledged the justice of the sentence, by which he was to suffer, forgave his prosecutors and all others, & expressed himself fully reconciled, and ready, to yield up his life as a small atonement for his crimes. He then cheerfully submitted to the operation of binding his arms by the executioner, who was in attendance, and advanced on the platform, in view of the people, with a firm step, and some appearance of alacrity. Having been fixed in a proper posture and situation, he raised the cap off his face, as well as the position of his arms would allow, and looked round on the multitude for a moment, apparently with some intention of addressing them. He, however, continued silent—the executioner immediately replaced the cap—retired— and the next instant the unfortunate man was launched into eternity. He expired almost instantaneously, without the slightest struggle or indication of suffering and, after remaining suspended for the usual period, the body was lowered into the coffin underneath and delivered to the relatives, who bore it out of town.
It has been said, and we fear too truly, that, from his early youth up to the advanced age, at which his life terminated thus ignominiously, Broughton was an occasional, if not a habitual violator of the laws. A report prevailed, said to be founded on his own confession, that he was a former associate of Peebles of Lisnaskea, long known as a notorious marauder in this County; and also that he was a party at the robbery of Lisgoole Abbey, near this town, about forty years ago. We feel it but justice to state, that, while under sentence of death, he disclaimed, in the most solemn manner, any sort of connection with Peebles, farther than having afforded him shelter and guidance on one occasion, when flying from pursuit, he accidentally stopped at his house; and that he denied, in the same unequivocal terms, any participation whatever in the attack on Lisgoole alluded to. The solemn lesson taught by his history, and his end, cannot fail to sink deep into the minds of those, who may have unhappily fallen into similar habits of crime. The old and practiced transgressor may be warned, that vengeance, though often slow, and suspended for a time, no doubt for the gracious purpose of holding out an invitation to repentance, is sure to overtake the hardened criminal at last; while the young offender, yet unconfirmed in the ways of guilt, must tremble to perceive the certain fate he is preparing for himself, and learn to remember his Creator in the days of his youth.
All spellings as per original.