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the men; occasioning ships to run foul of each other at night, and one or both foundering; to vessels being taken aback or overpowered by sudden squalls, and sinking, upsetting, or getting dismasted, for want of timely vigilance in preparing for the danger; and to the steering wrong courses, so as to run upon dangers which might have otherwise been avoided.

“ 20. That the practice of taking large quantities of ardent spirits as part of the stores of ships, whether in the navy or in the merchant service, and the habitual use of such spirits, even when diluted with water, and in what is ordinarily considered the moderate quantity served to each man at sea, is itself a very frequent cause of the loss of ships and crews; ships frequently taking fire from the drawing off of spirits, which are always kept under hold; crews frequently getting access to the spirit casks, and becoming intoxicated; and almost all the cases of insubordination, insolence, disobedience of orders, and refusal to do duty, as well as the confinements and punishments enforced as correctives, both of which must for the time greatly lessen the efficiency of the crews, being clearly traceable to the intoxicating influence of the spirits used by the officers and men.

21. Experiments in American Vessels. That the happiest effects have resulted from the experiments tried in the American navy and merchant service to do without spirituous liquors as an habitual article of daily use; there being at present more than 1,000 sail of American vessels traversing all the seas of the world, in every climate, without the use of spirits by their officers or crews, and being, in consequence of this change, in so much greater a state of efficiency and safety than other vessels not adopting this regulation, that the public insurance companies in America make a return of five per cent. of the premium of insurance on vessels completing their voyages without the use of spirits, while the examples of British ships sailing from Liverpool on the same plan have been productive of the greatest benefit to the shipowners, underwriters, merchants, officers, and crews.

" 23. Harbours of Refuge.-That there are many portions of the coast of Great Britain in which the want of harbours of refuge has led to the loss of many vessels that might have been easily saved had such harbours existed; of which the two following instances may be named :-In three different gales of wind which occurred in the years 1821, 1824, and 1829, there were lost on the east coast of England, between the Humber and Tees, 169 vessels, of which 73 were wrecked on the rocks off Redcar, where peculiar facilities exist for constructing a harbour of refuge, by which the loss of nearly all these vessels might have been avoided. In the present year 1836, no less than 39 vessels were seen on shore in Holyhead Bay at one time, 20 of which were totally lost with all their crews on board ; and within the same period many vessels have been wrecked between Holyhead and Liverpool, where an excellent position exists for forming a harbour of refuge between the Great and Little Orme’s Head, near the entrance of the river Dee, at which, had such a harbour been formed, the greater number of these vessels might have been saved.

"III. REMEDIES PROPOSED OR SUGGESTED.

25. Mercantile Marine Board. That it is a matter of the first importance to authorize, by enactment, the forrnation in London of a mercantile marine board, to direct, superintend, and regulate the affairs of the mercantile marine of the United Kingdom, on such a plan of organization and control as shall unite a due regard to the private interests of the shipowners, merchants, and underwriters, whose individual property may be embarked therein, with an equal attention to the public interests in the preservation of the national capital from destruction at sea; and, above all, in securing as far as possible the safety of the lives of those who may be engaged in navigating the ships and conducting the maritime commerce of the country.

33. Savings' Banks and Asylums.—The preservation of the health, strength, and moral character of seamen, which are material elements in the efficiency of ships' crews, and tend to lessen the risk of shipwrecks, by the establishment of savings' banks for the wages of seamen, and asylums for the reception of the men and their effects, either in ships to be moored afloat, adapted to their reception, or in buildings erected on shore ; for the purpose

of saving these seamen, as far as may be found practicable, from the misery and degradation into which they are so constantly plunged almost immediately after their return from sea, when, being made intoxicated, and sometimes stupified by drugs, they are robbed and plundered by

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crimps who make them their victims, and who hold them in actual bondage till all their wages are drained from them, when they are often taken in a state of intoxication to a ship, of the officers and crew of which they know nothing, and their advance of wages, instead of being applied to the purchase of an outfit for the voyage, is seized by their original betrayer for a real or pretended debt incurred while in his custody.

“ 34. Registry Offices.—The formation of registry offices for merchant seamen, at which certificates of the name, age, capacity, and character of every seaman (which, by the late Act for the Registration of British Seamen, must be granted to all seamen demanding the same from their commanders at the time of their discharge) may be deposited and recorded in a register book to be kept for that purpose ; such registry-offices to be bound to furnish, free of expense, authenticated copies of such certificates of character to all seamen applying for the same; in order to afford the requisite facility for the selection of the best men; and to furnish inducements to commanders, to engage at early periods of the vessel's fitting out, the actual crews by which their ships are to be manned for the voyage.

35. Nautical Schools.- The establishment of cheap nautical schools, either in ships afloat adapted to the purpose, or in appropriate buildings on shore, in which the practical duties of seamanship and the elements of navigation should be taught to the young apprentices who are training up for the sea; and in which, under proper directions, some attention should be paid to their habits of eleanliness, order, and sobriety, and the preservation of their moral characters, all of which are at present unhappily neglected."

« 41. Diminished use of Spirituous Liquors.—The encouragement, in his Majesty's navy, of the system,- 50 happily followed both in the ships of war and merchant vessels of America, and in some instances in the merchant ships of England, with the best results in every case, -- of discontinuing the daily supply of spirits to the seamen as an article of necessary use, and substituting the more nutritious and wholesome beverages of coffee, cocoa, chocolate, or tea; so as to restrict the quantity of spirits supplied as stores, to the amount required for special and urgent occasions, to be served under the direction of the

commander and medical officer of each ship, and at such periods only as they might deem necessary.

“ 42. Loading and Provisions. The prevention, by such means as may be deemed most efficient, of the practice of carrying any portion of ship’s cargoes on deck, by which vessels are frequently upset and water-logged or sunk; and the securing the reservation of an adequate portion of the provisions and water for the crew, to be kept in some part of the vessel that shall be accessible in such cases of peril, to prevent the dreadful scenes of hunger, misery, and lingering death, to which so many are subjected every year, for the want of some such securities as those proposed.

“ 45. American Shipping.That the committee cannot conclude its labours without calling attention to the fact, that the ships of the United States of America, frequenting the ports of England, are stated by several witnesses to be superior to those of a similar class amongst the ships of Great Britain, the commanders and officers being generally considered to be more competent as seamen and navigators, and more uniformly persons of education than the commanders and officers of British ships of a similar size and class trading from England to America; while the seamen of the United States are considered to be more carefully selected, and to be more efficient; that American ships sailing from Liverpool to New York have a preference over English vessels sailing to the same port, both as to freight and to rate of insurance; and, higher wages being given, their whole equipment is maintained in a higher state of perfection, so that fewer losses occur ; and as the American shipping have increased of late years in the proportion of 124 per cent. per annum, while the British shipping have increased within the same period only 11 per cent. per annum, the constantly increasing demand for seamen by the increasing maritime service of the whole world, the numbers cut off by shipwreck, and the temptations offered by the superior wages of American vessels, cause a large number of British seamen every year to leave the service of their own country, and to embark in that of the United States; and these comprising chiefly the most skilful and competent of our mariners, produce the double effect of improving the efficiency of American crews, and in the same ratio diminishing the efficiency of the British merchant service.”

EDITOR'S REPLY TO CORRESPONDENTS, RE

LATING TO THE “HORRIBLE CONDITION OF THE CREW OF THE FRANCIS SPAIGHT,” IN THE PILOT FOR AUGUST.

SEVERAL estimable correspondents have communicated with the Editor respecting the insertion of the paper as headed above. It was to have been expected that an account so truly “ horrible” would produce a powerful sensation in the minds of the readers; and it cannot be matter of surprise that a difference of opinion should exist as to the propriety of giving it a place in the Pilot, unless it could be clearly shown to correspond with its design, to promote among sailors the interests of holiness and pure Christianity.

Many have thought the paper in question admirably adapted to call forth the sympathies of Christian landsmen, to those who are exposed to such circumstances of danger and suffering. Some have read that account with amazement and sorrow, and with resolutions to become more decidedly and zealously the friends of seamen. Such is the effect anticipated by the excellent and judicious friend who sent the account, accompanied with his own wise l'emarks and reflections on it; and the utility of the paper was confidently expected by the Editor.

A communication, breathing a spirit of truly Christian kindness, has also been received from an anonymous friend in the country, expressing regret at its insertion, or rather that the murders, for such they were doubtless, were not referred to with the strongest expressions of condemnation by the Editor. We are greatly obliged by this letter, and will profit by its contents.

Taking away the life of a human being, even in cases of extreme hunger by seamen, and for food, seems to be so daring an outrage upon our common nature, such a flagrant violation of justice, and so grievous a provocation of the Almighty, that whatever distresses may be endured, it seems impossible to offer any thing in justification of such an act. It was therefore deemed unnecessary to make any addition to the reflections of the venerable friend who sent the paper, assured that the shocking occurrence could not serve as any example in committing such enormities, while

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