Imágenes de páginas

judges as to the legality of their mode of sioners of Naval Enquiry, thought it proceeding.

desirable to have the house put in posLord Ellenborough declared, that his session of every possible information that own opinion was decidedly in favour of might enable it to come to a just decision the proceeding by scire facias, as the ques- on this important subject. It was matetion would thereby have a legal investiga- rial that the discussion should not be untion, and as the learned judge would then necessarily protracted, but it was also to be tried by his peers. But, as the case be wished that every assistance should be ilow stands, their lordships had adopled afforded to the judgment of the house. another mode of proceeding. The law With this view it was that he proposed to clearly said, that they may in certain cases submit a inotion to the house for the proproceed to address bis majesty for the reduction of a letter written by lord vismoval of a judge; it was therefore evident, count Melville to the Commissioners of that they may make inquiry as to the facts Naval Enquiry on Thursday the 28th of upon which that address was to be found- March, in elucidation of some points in ed. The words appeared to bim to be so his lordship's case, which it would be imporunambiguous, and the inference that their tant to have before the house previous to lordships bad the legal power of proceed- its final decision on this question. He was ing as they had done was so plain and na- not aware of any objection to his motion, tural, that he had no hesitation in saying but if any should exist, he should content that there was no necessity for asking any himself in the present instance with a 10opinion of the learned lords upon the tice for to-morrow. As the printing of case.

this letter would take up some time, and Earl Darnley supported the motion as gentlemen would require also time to conthe only means of ridding their. lordships' sider its contents, in order to come to the minds of any doubt upon the case. The discussion fully prepared, he submitted questiou was then put, and there appeared whether it would not be desirable to have contents 18; not contents 32.-Adjourn- the notice for Thursday withdrawn, and ed.

some early day in the ensuing week fixed

instead of it. HOUSE OF COMMONS.

Mr. Fox asked across the table, whe

ther any answer had been returned to this Monday, April 1.

letter? [MINUTES.] Bowyer's Lottery bill, was The Chancellor of the Exchequer was not read a third time and passed. Mr. Par- aware that any answer had been sent, but nell from the office of the Chancellor of was desirous that all the papers relating to the Exchequer for Ireland, presented an the subject should be laid before the house, account of the funded and unfunded debt and printed for the information of genof Ireland, and of the charges outstanding tlemen. upon the consolidated fund of Ireland on Mr. Grey, in the absence of his hon. the 5th of January 1805.-Ordered to lie friend (Mr. Whitbread), felt it impossible on the table and to be printed.--A person to say whether he would consent to put off from the Bank of England presented an his motion to next week. Of this, howaccount of all the dollars that had been ever, he was certain, that it was the wish issued by the Bank of England 10 the of his hon. friend, that opportunities of latest period that the same could be made information should be atförded to the out. Ordered to lie on the table and to house. He agreed with the right hon. be printed.--The Neutral Ships bill, the gent. that the discussion of this important American Goods Neutral Ships bill, and question should not be protracted. He the Alien Privilege Prize Ships bill, were thought that by deferring the motion till severally read a third time and passed. - Friday, sufficient time would be afforded, The American Treaty bill was reported.--and suggested the propriety of adding to the The Innkeepers Rates bill passed through right hon. gent.'s motion, a Copy of any a Committee, and the report was ordered answer or proceeding thereon. to be received to-morrow.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer thought (LORD MELVILLE.] The Chancellor of that Monday would be the earliest day the Exchequer with a view to the discussion when the house could be prepared for the which stood for Thursday next, relative discussion, if the hon. member (Mr. Franto the Tenth Report of the Commis- cis) who had a motion for that day, would consent to defer it. If it should appear concluded with the motion as we have on the production of the letter, that any above stated. further proceedings had been taken upon Lord Castlereagh said, he should have it, they also would be necessary to be laid wished that this motion had been made on the table, which would require further without some of thre observations which tiine.

had been made upon it; he should have Mr. Francis made some objection to a no objection to the information seemed to further delay of his motion, which had be required, if it led to any practical proalready been put off to accommodate the ceeding of the house to be founded upon other side of the house. But on the sug- it; but the hon. gent. had mixed two things gestion of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, which are totally distinct in their nature : Mr. Francis's motion relative to the pre- the proceedings of the court martial by sent state of India was fixed for Friday which Mr. Grogan was tried and executed next, and Mr. Grey consented to put off as a rebel, and afterwards the act of athis' notice on the part of his hon. friend to tainder, which was a proceeding in the Monday, under an understanding however, parliament of Ireland, founded, not on on all sides, that no further delay should the evidence of the court martial, but on take place, unless something not then fore- evidence laid before the parliament itself, seen, should occur to render it neces- and such as had been held sufficient by sary.

that parliament to justify the act of atThe Chancellor of the Exchequer then tainder. He doubted whether there existe moved “ that there be laid before the ed now any evidence, which the house house a Copy of the Letter of lord vis- could be satisfied with, to induce it to recount Melville, dated the 28th of March, verse that proceeding, and the hon. memto the Commissioners of Naval Enquiry ; ber had not stated what parliamentary use and also, a copy of any proceedings had he intended to make of the information, thereon, or of any answer thereto by the such as it might be, after he should obtain said Commissioners of Naval Enquiry."- it. For tliese reasons, and wishing not to Agreed to.

deprive the hon. gent. of an opportunity (CORNELIUS GROGAN'S ATTAINDER.] to call for such information whenever he Mr. Martin (of Galway), pursuant to no- should make out a case to entitle him to tice, moved, " that there. be laid before its production, the noble lord moved, that the house a copy of the evidence and pro- the other order of the day be now read. ceedings before the committee of the par- Mr. Martin imputed this opposition to liament of Ireland, on passing the act of a wish in the noble lord to shelter the adthe 38th of his present majesty, attaint- ministration, of which he was a member. ing Cornelius Grogan, esq. of John's town, He considered Mr. Grogan as a person in the county of Wexford, so far as the who was justified in what he did under the same regarded the said Cornelius Grogan.” authority of lord Coke and lord Hale, who Ile said it was proper to apprize the house laid it down as the law of our land, that a of his object in making this motion. It man may join rebels to save his own life, was, that the evidence taken before the and continue with them under the terror committee of the parliament of Ireland of its loss, until he shall Irave an opportu. might be re-examined, to see whether it nity to escape; this, he said, was the laid a sufficient ground for the proceed- case of that unfortunate gent. He conings which were had in the case of the un-sidered, therefore, that his execution was fortunate gent. to whom he had alluded, an act of murder, and that the atrainder and whose life was taken away by the order was an act of confiscation, founded on an act of a military coancil; and by which evi- of murder. The noble lord's apprehension dence, he maintained, .it would appear, fell short of the fact, when he supposed that nothing could be more fagrant than there was not evidence sufficiently formal those proceedings were; that the life of to be laid before the house. lle kuew' Mr. Cornelius Grogan was taken

there was correct evidence of the whole without the verdict of a járy, or trial by proceeding. He had seen it. The hon. law; that he was tried by a inilitary coun-member contended that there was no want cil, and that the members of the court of documents, and pledged himself, if newere not upon oath, and that the neces- cessary, to find the evidence which it wag sary formalities were not observed, several his wish to submit to the house, as correct omissions of which lze enumerated, and notes had been taken of it at the time.



Reverting to the court martial, the hon. possible information upon the subject'; and meniber insisted that all the necessary for the only reason that induced him to move malities had not been complied with. He the order of the day was, that the hop. would ask his majesty's attorney general, gent. had not stated what his object was in if a person taken from the king's prison, calling for this evidence, or what parliaand not taken in any act of rebellion, was mentary proceeding he meant to ground a legal subject of a court-martial? And upon it. The hon. gent. bad now stated yet ibis had been the case in respect to his object to be that of reversing the bill Mr. Grogan. He had not joined, but had of attainder against Mr. Grogan, which been detained by the rebels. He would certainly was a fair parliamentary ground stake his credit, that the evidence he had for calling for the document in question ; mored for would bring to light such fila- and therefore he would, with the leave of grant proceedings as had seldom, if ever, the house, withdraw his motion. been heard of, and which he was not at Sir John Neroport said, that the family all surprized the noble lord should be of Mr. Grogan had been in very extraoranxious to keep in the back ground. The dinary, and, indeed, most unfortunate country, he asserted, was in perfect peace circumstances. The very next brother to at the time. The king's commission was, Mr. Grogan, and who would have been in the county of Wexford, to deliver the his immediate heir had he survived him, gaols. Was there any reason, then, for a fell honourably, loyally, and gloriously, mihitary court martial to call them out? fighting the battles of bis country. The The hon. member then adverted, at some other brother fought with the most deterlength, to the evidence given by general inived bravery, till driven out of Wexford Craddock before the Irish commons, whose by the rebels, who were greatly superior answers to questions that he himself had in numbers, before the main body of the put to him, he begged leave to recall to farmy arrived, and therefore, under all the memory of the noble lord, and which these circumstances, added to a doubt clearly shewed the irregularity of the pro- whether Mr. Grogan himself had not been ceedings of the court martial. His object forced to fight on the side of the rebels, in obtruding this motion on the house was, he thought the justice of the house would he thought, a very laudable one. Should incline them to agree to the motion. it appear

that there was no evidence sufli- General Loftus said, he was in Wexford cient to warrant the proceedings that had at the time of the court martial upon Mr. been taken against Mr. Grogan, his rela- Grogan, and he begged leave to state, tions at least ought to have redress. that the officers who formed the court were

Mr. Fox observed, that the ground of the principal men of rank and character in the noble lord's objection did not appear the army, and every attention had been to bim to be at all admissible. He had paid in the careful examination of the witsaid there was no evidence to be produced. nesses. After the sentence was passed, Whatever might have been the case in! he was told by many persons of the town, Ireland, such he was certain was not the that Mr. Grogan was not so much to blame case in this country, for if no evidence as he appeared to be; on which he apcould be afterwards produced, attainders plied to General Lake to suspend the exewould be irreversible; but the noble lord cution of the sentence for some time, :ill sus too well acquainted with the history he could make further inquiry; to which of this country to be reminded that many general Lake consented, and the execution instances had occurred of attainders being was deferred till evening, when not being reversed. If what he had heard on this sub- able to find any facts in his favour to counject were true, there could be no donbt that terpoise, or do away the evidence adduced ihat Act ought to be reversed; but that against him, he went to inform General was not the question, till the evidence Lake of the circumstance, and the execu. should be in due form before them. Sévere tion then took place. in general were the times when acts of at- Mr. Francis rose merely to express his tainder were resorted to, but to render them disapprobation of acts of attainder in geirreversible by relusing a revisal, would neral, as affecting the innocent and not be to aggravate that severity.

the guilty. Lord Castlcreagh said, that nothing Lord Castlereagh said, he was anxious could be further from his wishes than to to do justice to the characters of Mr.' prevent parliament from receiving- every Grogau's brothers and family, by allowing

[ocr errors]

that they had always distinguished them-fof wisdom, sprung in complete armour selves by the most unshaken loyalty and from the braiu of this political Jupiter, the attachment to their king and country, and whole Congress, on mount Olympus being government had shewn its sense of their employed as the midwives. He rather conduct by conveying the confiscated es- thought, however, that she was in reality tate to a near relation of the family. His no more than a plaiu rustic nymph, not lordship’s motion was then, with the leave over remarkable for dress or aitractious, of the house, withdrawn, and the original for she had wandered over every parish motion was agreed to.

in the kingdom, and had not been able to [MILITIA ENLISTING BILI.) The Chan find a friend, or companion to accompany cellor of the Exchequer moved the order of her. He observed, ibat the ballot was a the day for the third reading of the militia very unequal tax on the people ; but still enlisting bill. The bill was then read a the militia had long been established, and third time. The right hon. gent. brought the principle could not be destroyed withup a clause relative to the wives and fami- out the inost flagrant injustice. The nolies of those militia-men who should en- ble lord concluded with severely condemlist.

ning the ever-changing system the right The Marquis of Douglas asked whether hon. gent. had adopted towards the millia it was the intention of the clause to render for many years past, and contended that these wives and families still dependent on the bill would go to the ruin of that conthe country for support after the husbands stitutional branch of our delensive force. should have enlisted ? If that was the It was calculated to ruin the militia by case he would oppose the clausc.

taking the gentlemen of landed property Sir William Young expressed the same away from it, and destroying the confiresolution, to object to it in case it was dence which the men now had in their intended to occasion a permanent burden officers; it was also unjust in its operation to the country.

on the public, as it occasioned an inequa. The Chancellor of the Exchequer said, |lity of taxation on different classes of the that they had mistaken the clause, for its people. object was exactly the contrary of what Mr. Sheridan rose for the purpose of they imagined, in as far as it went to take entering his protest against the principle the burden of the families of such militia- of this bill. He reinained of the same men as should enlist off the country after a opinion that he had formerly expressed. time to be limited. The clause was then he agreed with the noble lord, that this agreed to; and, after a verbal amendment bill would destroy the militia system, and had been proposed and adopted, the ques- in a manuer the most unprincipled and intion was put that the bill should pass. sidious. It would lead to insubordination

The Marquis of Douglas was sorry that in the regiments, and was dangerous in a he was again obliged to trespass on the constitutional view, and unwise in a mili. indulgence of the house, but hoped that tary one. One object he bad in rising was, he would not be thought pertinacious in to take notice of the preamble. In that it his opinions, when no argument had as was stated, “ whereas it is important that yet been urged to justify this pernicious bis majesty's regular forces should be augmeasure, at least nothing more than this, mented.” When, he asked, had this imthat the change of service would be advan-portant discovery been made ? Was it tageous to the country. He admitted that not known at the passing of the act of last this was to a certain degree the case, but session, when the right hon, gent. told us then the question must be considered with to count months and weeks and days and reference to other points, and in this view hours, till such an augmentation could be it would be found to be calculated to pro- obtained ? He contended, that the preduce a great deal of mischief. The fact amble of this bill ought to be, Whereas was, that the object of the bill was to sup- an act was passed last session for augmentply the defects of the parish bill; that ing his majesty's regular forces, which acs notable production, that wonderous con- bad totally failed in its object, it is thereception which had been called a rural fore necessary, that said act should be renymph, clad in russet gown. The gentle - pealed.”. This le maintained was the men on the other side, would wish, no language that ought to be employed, inasdoubt, to give her a more splendid name. much as a bill that was to have produced They would call her Minerva, the goddess 27,000 men had not produced a single man to our infantry. This would have inade on the inefficacy of the additional been telling the truth, and trutlı was a very force bill, were whotły without foundation. good thing in an act of parliament. The recruiting, under the sanction of that

The Chancellor of the Exchequer observed bill, was proceeding with every prospect of that there was a small objection to such a advantage, and by these means, from 18Q preamble, which was that it was contrary to 200 men per week were added to the to the fact.

service in G. Britain and Ireland. Was Mr. For said, that if the right hon. gent. it to be said, that a measure productive, meant to say that the preamble proposed at the rate of 10,000 men per annum, was by his hon. friend, was contrary to the idle and nugatory? What was advanced fact, because it mentioned that the bill with respect to the injustice of the bill had not procured one man, he was certainly now under consideration, was equally inin the right, because it had certainly pro- applicable; the intention was not to force duced more than one. But to say that the men from the militia regiments, but this bill was any thing else than a repeal of merely to receive those under a compethe former to a certain extent, was most tent reward, who were anxious to joiu the certainly erroneous, because if this was regular establishment. not the case, what was the meaning of the Mr. Fox rose to explain, that the bill hoasting promises which were heard when could properly be denominated inefficient, the fornier bill was proposed ? Could the because it was professedly to raise 27,000 right hon. gent. not tell last year that such men immediately, and it had wholly disa bill as this would be necessary, notwith- appointed this design. standing his former measure? This was a The Secretary at IVar affirmed, in reply, curious circumstance; but the truth was, that, from its effects hitherto, there was that it was then inconvenient to tell us every reason to conclude that it was alany such thing. But he pow found it out ready producing at the rate of 10,000 men in the month of March. Was it because annually. the recruiting of the army was at a stand ?

Mr. For insisted, that it had, at least, Why he had not proposed it earlier in the totally failed of effecting what was prosession, he could not tell, unless it were mised from it. because he did not choose to be the first to Mr. Sheridun begged to observe, in exconfess that his bill had failed. The men planation, that he did not say that the act now to be raised, could not be perfect re- of last session had not produced a single gular soldiers for some time, after they man to our general force, but that it had not changed their service. But the plain truth added a single man to the British infantry, was, that the right hon. gent. had so ab- which by the returns on the table was used the incapacity of the last ministers, considerably less in number than in the that he found himself absolutely obliged last year. to propose something new; but his novel- Mr. Windham commented upon the ty had failed, and now came another of curious definition of success given by the his temporary experiments; and however Secretary at War. The success he, how. civility might prevent the expressions of ever, apprehended ought to have been in triumph from being too galling, yet when proportion to the promise. If 27,000 men

the colleagues of the right hon. gent. re- were promised, and only 2 or 3,000 were | collected and compared the epithets with produced, it could not be said that this was which he then honoured them, with the any great success.

If a man were to evidence his own measures have given in promise to walk to York in four days, his favour, wheiher in convivial meetings and had stopped the greater part of the or in political consultations, they must time at Stamford, it might be said to him feel a considerable pleasure, and even a "Why don't you get on? you will not be degree of exultation. His chief objection able to perform your promise." He might to the present bill was, that it was part of answer to this, "Pray have patience a little, that patchwork, temporizing, and unsys- I am tired, and must stop for some time, tematic mode which characterized all the but never fear, I shall make out my jour, military measures of the right hon. gent. ney in good time to save my credit." and from which experience taught us to Now, this might be very well as a promise, expect nothing.

although certainly it would not be a very The Secretary at War said, that the promising undertaking. We were first told, observations which were so confidently give it a trial, and then it will succeed."

« AnteriorContinuar »