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The average numbers in the Institutions, during the past three years,
were as follows:
The numbers of persons committed to the Workhouse and House of
Correction, during the same three years, were as follows: Number committed in 1875. ...
562 " 1876....
545 66 1877..
377 since the organization of the Institution, in 1869....
..3,836 The number of commitments in 1877 is the smallest since 1871, when it was 361.
THE NEW STATE PRISON.
The work on the new State Prison has been advanced during the past year, as rapidly as possible, consistent with thoroughness. The exterior of the buildings is completed, and the contract work on the interior is in progress. The exceptionally favorable weather of the month of December enabled the State Prison Commission and the contractors to continue the work without interruption, until the end of the year. The Warden's house is in a forward state of progress, the exterior being completed, and the whole under contract to be ready for occupation on, or before the first day of June, 1878.
On the first day of January, 1877, the balance in the State Treasury to the credit of the State Prison Commission was $883.40. The appropriations for the Prison in 1877, amounted to $130,000, making the total receipts $130,883.40 for the year. There has been expended during the year 1877, the sum of $108,238.96, leaving a balance of $22,664.44, in the Treasury at the end of the year, all of which, however, will be required for existing contracts, not yet completed.
There are still to be provided, cooking and heating apparatus, plumbing, means for lighting, drainage and water supply, furniture in part, grading the grounds,
, floors, carpenter's work and mason's work in finishing the chapel and adjoining rooms, and iron bridges to connect the Hospital and the Warden's house with the main building.
The State Prison Commission is now preparing contracts for the completion of the work, which will soon be presented, with estimates, in the annual report of the Commission to the General Assembly.
The following statement of the total appropriations and expenditures for the new State Prison up to January 1st, 1878, is taken from the books of the General Treasurer:
. . $10,000 00 State fiscal year ending April 30th, 1876... 128,214 97
1877... 123,428 67 May 1st, to Dec. 31st, 1877..
92,312 17 $353,955 81
Balance unexpended Jan. 1st, 1878.....
THE INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION AT PARIS.
I have received from the State Department at Washington, official information, that I am requested to nominate to the President of the United States, for appointment, two suitable persons as honorary commissioners to represent this State at the approaching Paris Exhibition, and I am also desired to call the attention of our citizens to the importance of a full representation of our varied industries and productions on that occasion. I will endeavor at an early period to select proper individuals as honorary commissioners, and I request the members of the General Assembly to present to their constituents the important benefits to be derived from a representation of our mechanical and manufacturing products at this great Exhibition, not only as a matter of reasonable State pride, but as having a direct tendency to attract the attention of foreign consumers to our productions, and thus create and develop new markets for what we can readily supply.
THE ANTIETAM NATIONAL CEMETERY.
The War Department at Washington requests my assistance in the matter of securing to the United States a legal title to the land occupied by the Antietam National Cemetery, near Sharpsburg, Maryland.
Congress, by act of March 2, 1877, authorized the Secretary of War to pay the outstanding indebtedness of the Board of Trustees of this Cemetery, and appropriated money therefor, adding a proviso that payment of such indebtedness shall not be made until the legal title to the property shall be vested in the United States. It
appears that the title to this property is vested in the State of Maryland as Trustee for the several States that contributed towards its establishment and maintenance, and before the title thereto can be transferred to the United States, the consent of the several States to such transfer must first be obtained.
This State being one of the parties in interest, I desire your earliest attention in the premises, and will submit to you a draft of a bill which I have received from the War Department as, in their view, meeting the requirements of
THE LADIES BOARD OF VISITORS.
Upon this Board there have been two resignations of ladies, who have exercised an important influence over its conduct, and I have, after considerable difficulty, secured proper persons to fill the vacancies.
I think the important benefit to be derived from the influence of this Board over our penal and correctional institutions is not fully appreciated.
There are many females and children of tender age confined for misdemeanors, who require the delicate consideration and attention of females to benefit them physically and morally, and if the
powers of this Board could be somewhat increased, it would tend to very beneficent results.
There are 19 State Beneficiaries at the Butler Hospital for the Insane, supported in part by their friends and receiving from the State one hundred dollars each, per annum, towards their support. In addition to these there were on Nov. lst, 1877, others receiving State aid, as follows:
At the Perkins Institution and Massachusetts Asylum for the Blind,
South Boston ....
South Boston ....
I visited the Perkins Institution in December last, in company with the Secretary of State and found that admirable Institution accomplishing the beneficent results which were contemplated by its benevolent founders.