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FIRST NIGHT IN A RAGGED SCHOOL.
works of labour, it is a sin to treat them the fact, that Jack Newman was among unkindly or cruelly—a sin which God can the boys sitting in the foremost row. see, and which he will punish.”
This important circumstance was “I think that a Ragged School must be made known to Mr. Dormer, who made a very good thing,” said Arthur ; “for inquiry from one of the teachers, and children who are very ignorant, and who found that Jack Newman had not only have grown up in bad habits, so that they been a regular attendant at the school for cannot be taken into other schools, must several weeks, but that his behaviour was want teaching most of all. I suppose good when there, and he was making there will be a great many scholars, progress in learning to read.
The interest which Jane and Arthur “There are nearly a hundred at present took in the Ragged School was much in one school," said Mr. Dormer. increased by such information. They was only begun a few months since; and, gave good attention to the opening address till now, there has been no proper place to the children; and Jane took her in which they could be instructed. They mother's hand and drew nearer to her have hitherto met in a cottage at the foot side, when all stood up and joined in of Marston Hill : but now a new school- singing the verse :room is just completed, which will be
“ Praise God from whom all blessings flow; opened this evening; and, if you like, Praise him, all creatures here below; Arthur, you may go with me and see the Praise him above, ye heavenly host : poor children enjoy their treat of tea and Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.” cake, and the sight of a magic lantern, The singing was not in tune, and some which is to be afterwards shown.”
of the voices were harsh and out of time; “May I go too, papa ?” asked Jane, but Jane and Arthur thought, with their eagerly. “ Will there be any girls ?” parents, that it was a pleasant sound to And then, as the thought of rough Jack hear words of praise to God from lips Newman beating his donkey came across
which early habit and evil company had her mind, she in sorrow said, “No; I trained to utter the language of sin, and should be afraid to go to a Ragged to take his holy name in vain. School.”
The tea and cake went round, and then “You need not be afraid in this case, the magic lantern was shown. Most of my dear,” said her mother; "for papa my readers, at one time or other, have says that tickets of admission will be seen a magic lantern, and know how the given to-night to such children only as bright figures flit before them, so I need have attended before, and have become not stop to describe it. But it was a new accustomed to order and obedience. There- sight to the children of the Ragged School; fore we may all go; and I doubt not that and Jane and Arthur, as they sat together we shall see much that will be interesting, in the dark, were greatly entertained by and at the same time, I trust, cause our their cries of wonder and delight. Some hearts to feel grateful for our own mercies, figures of animals were shown, and there and pity for our poor and ignorant fellow- was the figure of a man driving a donkey creatures."
to market. The teacher took occasion, Accordingly, at six o'clock that evening, from this picture, to warn his hearers Mr. and Mrs. Dormer, with Jane and against cruelty of every kind; and Jane Arthur, entered the new school-room ; could not help giving Arthur a gentle and, soon afterwards, the doors were push, and whispering her hope that the opened to admit the children, who came bint would not be thrown away upon in one by one, looking very awkward, and Jack Newman. some very untidy, and some with faces There were no lessons that evening ; not so clean as might have been wished ; but Arthur and Jane saw slates hanging yet there was something in their appear- about the room, and wooden boards with ance which awoke both pity and kindness; large letters pasted upon them, or short and Arthur longed to be a man that he sentences in very easy words. There were might help to teach them, and Jane others on which were texts taken from whispered to her mother that they could Scripture. One of these was, “I will easily make some frocks and pinafores for arise and go to my Father;" and another, the poor ragged girls.
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and The children had only just taken their are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest;" seats when Arthur announced, in a low and a third, “Him that cometh unto me voice, that he had made a discovery. I will in no wise cast out." The object Jane, at first, could scarcely believe him ; of the Ragged School, Mr. Dormer said, but scon her own eyes convinced her of was, under the Divine blessing, to bring
poor ignorant children to the knowledge of their Creator and their Saviour, and to teach them their duty towards God and towards man.
After a short prayer had been offered in very simple words, that God in his mercy, and for the sake of Jesus Christ his Son, would bless the instructions to be hereafter given, a hymn was sung, and the children, looking happy and thankful, were quietly dismissed. Jane and Arthur went home, delighted with all that they had heard and seen, and confiding to each other a number of little plans by which at the present time, and still more at a future period, they hoped to give some help to the Ragged School.-Child's Companion.
“THE RAGGED SCHOOL” BOY. The village school for village boys, the ragged
school for me; I know the village has its joys, its air so pure and
But I am not a village child—I breathe no village
clothes I wear.
lane, With tattered dress and naked feet, yet I will not
so mild, His love with me, though once so rude, as if I
were his child. Though mother's dead and father gone, and I am
left to roam, Yet, teacher says, a day will dawn when I shall
have a home A home so happy and so bright, a home and rest
above, When, clothed in raiment pure and white, in
yonder house of love; No more a ragged school boy wild, but dressed
in bright array, My God shall own his homeless child, and wipe my tears away.
KING EDWARD RAGGED AND INDUSTRIAL
opening of the above institution took place on Wednesday, July 23rd, at three o'clock, before a very numerous audience,
Right Hon the Earl of Shaftesbury in the Chair. After a hymn and prayers,
The Earl of Shaftesbury said, that it could not but be matter of joy and congratulation that they had assembled to day in such a building and for such a purpose.
He rejoiced in the great movement to which he had to direct their attention, and by which they rescued youth from the depths of ignorance into which they had fallen by long and unpardonable neglect. He rejoiced, not only for the sake of those wretched beings who had become the object of their care, but he should rejoice in it for their sakes, and also because the benefits were reciprocal. He had always delighted in these movements, because he thought them adapted to the wants and exigencies of the times, and because they were calculated to bring into contact and friendly co-operation all classes differing in religious opinions. He knew of no movement that was so likely to bring all mon into harmony and to soften asperities. This union was not without political advantages. He was not touching on the political position of this or that party, but he spoke of the general prosperity and safety of the realm. He was fully convinced that owing to this the country had stood undisturbed amongst all the dangers and convulsions of the Continent; but most especially he rejoiced in this, because it was an attempt to carry light into districts as dark as the interior of Africa, or as dark as the city of Timbuctoo. He was glad to see that their Ragged Schools were also to be Industrial. He would never ose the opportunity of stating that they would fail in a great part of the good if they had not connected with them an Industrial Class. He thought they must all have seen the brigade in red coats, com monly called “the Shoe-black Brigade," engaged in their honest occupation. These boys had come from the very depths and recesses of human vice and misery. They had been properly trained
in some of these Ragged Schools; they had been selected on account of their good character, and none but those of the best character had been selected. The effort that they were making for this ragged class was not hopeless. See how, when you gave them the opportunity, they would rise in their views and general conduct. The other day he was happy to hear that one of the boys had signified his intention of emigrating to Australia ; he produced out of his own personal savings from the 1st May, a sum of £3. To that was to be added a sum in the savings' bank, and he hoped, with further assistance, to be able to undertake the voyage. Surely, then, when they had such instances as these before them, they would never despair; but, thanking God for the encouragement that had been given them, they would so act, before they left this room, that so much of this district of Spitalfields should be made a model district for imitation.
The Report of the Committee was read by Mr. R. H. Williams, the Hon. Secretary. It appeared that the attention of the Committee had long been called to the disgraceful state of this neighbourhood. The Ragged School Union had kindly placed in the hands of the Committee the sum of £433, the amount contributed at a public meet. ing held in the Guildhall, for the purposes of an eastern refuge. This induced the Committee at once to double the dimensions of the land, and they purchased, for the sum of £600, the site on which the building now stood. The estimated cost of the whole would not be less than £3,700.
The Rev. Thomas Binney proposed the first Resolution, that the meeting having heard the Report of the Committee, rejoiced in the success which had attended its efforts, believing that such institutions were eminently calculated to ameliorate the condition of those for whom they had been established, and that industrial pursuits were highly conducive to the reclamation and future usefulness and prosperity of a large class of the juvenile population of the east of London, who were now the objects of destitution, vagrancy, and crime.
The Duke of Grafton seconded the Resolution. He did so with extreme reluctance, feeling that
he was perfectly incapable of doing justice to the subject. They all agreed in one thing---namely, the necessity of educating the poorer classes of society. He did not mean to say that the poorer classes were the only classes who needed education, for we all needed education, and particularly that Scriptural education which he felt assured they must all feel ought to be the leading
feature of the education of these poor children. He quite agreed with the noble lord in the chair, that they ought to combine industrial education with learn. ing of every description. No man could live upon learning when he grew up from a child, but if learning a trade was combined with learning, then the child when he grew up had something to carry him all over the world, and it was of the highest importance that industry ought to be accompanied with Scriptural education.
The Rev. Hugh Allen supported the Resolution. It had rejoiced his heart to meet the noblest of the land in this destitute part of this great metropolis. It was by the nobility coming forward on these occasions that they entwined themselves in the hearts of the people.
Samuel Gurney, Esq., in moving the second Resolution, stated, he was himself prepared to give £50 a year for the next three years, and also, if the Committee made good their efforts to lessen the debt, he should be happy to assist them.
The Rev. Mr. Harris, supported by Lord Radstock, seconded the Resolution, which was carried; and after thanks to the Earl of Sbaftesbury, the
persons present accompanied the noble Eari to inspect the building, and partook of tea, which had been laid out in the upper and lower school-rooms. An adjourned meeting was held in the evening, Mr. Althans in the chair. The room was crowded to excess, and much interest shown in the new undertaking.
Exhibition in Hyde Park. Most beneficial results were to be expected from this step. It would show foreigners that although this class of our population was the dregs and the opprobrium of the British islands, beyond the disgrace which clings to the pauperism of other countries, still that there were British men at work to stem the growing tide of corruption. Thus much would be shown; but he could not conceal from the meeting that their efforts were inadequate to the occasion. Scarcely had they cleared a district when it was again invaded by hosts of the destitute and wicked from the provinces. In conclusion, Lord Shaftesbury paid a hearty tribute of admiration to the excellent working of the Grotto Passage establishment. Several formal resolutions were next moved by Mr. A. Mills, the Rev. Mr. Power, and others, and the report of the committee was read, from which it appeared that the establishment is in want of funds to carry on and to extend its operations; and that the want of a sufficient number of committee-men and voluntary teachers is likewise severely felt. In these respects the report contained an urgent appeal to the benevolence and the sympathies of the public.
GROTTO PASSAGE RAGGED SCHOOLS. THE annual meeting of the friends and supporters of the Grotto Passage Ragged and Industrial Schools was held on the 9th of July, at the Bazaar, Baker Street, with the Right Hon. the Earl of Shaftesbury in the chair. The meeting was well attended; and in the passages leading to the hall an exposition on a small scale had been got up of the various articles which had been manufactured by the boys at the industrial schools. In his address to the meeting, the chairman adverted to these specimens of humble but honest industry, on the part of those who, without the intervention of the Grotto Passage establishment, would most ikely be engaged in some nefarious and disgraceful occupation. That training and good advice could prevail even against the worst elements was plainly shown by, the success of the “Shoe-black Brigade." (Cheers.) The industrial schools, the refugo for destitute boys, and the ragged and industrial schools, were powerful antidotes against that hopeless corruption to which such legions of the destitute and abandoned youth fell a prey, Much good had been effected by them, and signal had been the successes which had crowned the humane and Christian attempts of their friends and supporters. But all these successes could not prevail against the great and lasting evil. Lord Shaftesbury said, further, that the schools he had mentioned had obtained, not industrial only, but also moral results. They enabled boys to emigrate, and emigration was, and for some time to come would be, the only means of effectually curing the evils which our social condition entailed upon individuals. He added, that the committee had resolved to send a select number of these children to the Great
CAMDEN TOWN RAGGED SCHOOLS. On Thursday night, July 17th, the third Annual Meeting of the supporters of these schools was held at the Music Hall, Store Street, the Earl of Harrowby in the chair.
The Noble Earl, in his introductory observa. tions, referred in terms of warm praise to the labours of the Earl of Shaftesbury in the cause of Ragged Schools, by which their progress had been so greatly advanced. Too much commendation could not be given to those who devoted themselves to the elevation and improvement of those who were in the lowest stages of suffering humanity; and it was the duty of the wealthy, and all who did not share in the work, to aid liberally by their funds the efforts of those who engaged in their often painfultask. He attributed the general contentment and social security which prevailed, in no mean degree, to the influence of Ragged Schools on the lowest classes of the population, which was productive of a civi. lising, if not a Christianising effect. It was no small thing that in a population of two millions and a half, so much good feeling should exist, and that teachers might go into the worst districts, and meet not only with respect, but kindness, The locality in which these schools were placed, was one in which they could not fail to be exceedingly useful, it being the receptacle of a large part of the labouring population, who were driven out by the march of improvement, and it was in such a district that Ragged Schools were especially required. After some further observations, the Chairman called on the Secretary to read the Report. It stated that the Boys' Ragged School averaged in attendance 30, and the Day School for infants and children under ten years of age, 120. There was a Boys' and Girls' Industrial Class, where tailoring and other branches of useful employment were taught. In the ordinary branches of education their progress was most satisfactory, and in a few months the children were taught to read and write. During the past year, the receipts, including a grant from the Ragged School Union, were £189. 188. 4d. There was a debt of £60 to discharge, for which the Committee appealed to the friends of the schools to enable them to discharge. Several gentlemen then
addressed the Meeting, among whom were the Rev. Mr. Nolan, Rev. J. Woodwark, Rev. W. Gittens, and Lieut. Black
GLEANINGS FROM THE VINEYARD.
In the Number for March, it was our privilege to present our readers with a narrative of an unusually gratifying character. We recorded it as a noble illustration of the power of Divine grace, and in vindication of a truth we have often stated—that the Gospel is the only lever by which a true and permanent reformation can be effected on the miserable objects of our care. And although it be seldom that we are able to record an instance in which its power is so strikingly manifested, yet we are not without others, equally conclusive, although possessing fewer features of peculiar interest. Nor do we consider that the results of our labours are unimportant, even when they stop short of ultimate conversion. The man does not live in vain who labours for the mitigation of human misery, or the diminution of guilt, even where the effects extend only to the present life. A criminal reformed, an orphan befriended, or a vagrant converted into an industrious citizen, is not only a benefit conferred on individual suffering, but also on society, proving a sufficient recompence for all the money or labour expended in the act.
We believe, therefore, that the following brief statement respecting a few orphan youths who emigrated from the Westminster Juvenile Refuge, and who were thereby rescued from a state of wretchedness and guilt, out of which they had no power to remove themselves, will be duly appreciated by the majority of readers. We record them, chiefly as illustrating the deplorable condition of a numerous class of orphan children, thousands of whom may be found in the metropolis-and the benefits frequently resulting from a course of industrial training at our schools. In no case shall we enter into the details of the history, but will merely present a brief outline, as recorded by the master of the Refuge:—The first we mention was a lad, cast upon the world without father or mother, at the age of fifteen, wandering destitute on the streets of London ; he committed a theft, in hopes it might lead to his admission into an asylum (a strange proxy for an orphan refuge!) For this he received fourteen days' imprisonment and a whipping, and was again turned into the streets. He then found his way to Covent Gardenthat common haunt of young unfortunates—where he obtained a few jobs, which yielded him an occasional meal, supplemented by the waste fruits and garbage thrown from the stalls, and a few pence to pay for a lodging in St. Giles's. Pour women, one husband, and sixteen children, slept in the same room with him! In what state could be the atmosphere
NO. XXXIII. — VOL. III.
GLEANINGS FROM THE VINEYARD.
of such a den ?—what the moral effects upon these children, and especially on this youth of fifteen? Such facts must cause every benevolent heart to rejoice that the Lodging-house Bill of the Earl of Shaftesbury has received the sanction of Government, and will be the means, it is hoped, of effecting a thorough reformation of these pestilential hovels.
The poor boy, when brought to the Refuge, had neither shirt, shoes, nor stockings; his nakedness scarcely covered by a few filthy shreds of clothing, he presented a spectacle of extreme wretchedness. After remaining a few months at school, he gave signs of moral and physical improvement, and ultimately became one of the most useful lads in the Institution, often acting as assistant teacher, and in the absence of the master exerting a beneficial influence over the other boys. Although we have not heard from him since his embarkation, it is hoped he will become a successful and industrious colonist.
Our next case was the illegitimate son of an abandoned woman, who died when the boy was fourteen years of age. For a time he was supplied with a sleeping-place on a corner of his aunt's floor; but as this gratuity of his only relative became an inconvenience, he repaired to Covent Garden during the day, and slept in passages and under empty carts at night. Begging and stealing (the ordinary occupations of such outcasts) became the means of his subsistence, until, hungry and balfnaked, he was taken into the Juvenile Refuge. Not a few of our readers may have seen him, “ clothed and in his right mind,” as from month to month he delivered their Magazines with greater faithfulness and regularity than some of his companions. On one occasion, he was sent by the master to pay a bill amounting to five pounds ; as it was the first bank-note he had ever seen in his life, he was greatly delighted, on discovering its value, to know that he had been intrusted with so large a sum-a circumstance which tended greatly to increase his self-respect, and to have a beneficial effect upon his conduct ever after. He also has emigrated to Australia, leaving strong assurances of his future well-doing
We may notice briefly another emigrant, who was received into the Refuge when thirteen years of age, said to be the illegitimate son of a nobleman. Of the truth of this we had no positive means of knowing, although various circumstances would lead us to suppose there was truth in the statement. The master says that there was something in his manners" characteristic of high birth,” but evidently forgetting that such characteristics must be the result of an education which the poor boy never received. He was kept by a widow, who called him her “nephew by adoption;" but she at last turned him away, probably on the discontinuance of an allowance received for his support.
After receiving a religious and industrial training, sufficient to fit him for the duties of common life, he was sent to Port Adelaide, where he may yet become one of the aristocracy of the colonies.