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cipal objects to be aimed at in the seamen's savings-bank would be :
1st. To establish it in the most central situation; to have it open at the hours most suitable to the convenience of seafaring men ; and to have in attendance persons familiar with their habits and humours.
2ndly. To afford every proper facility both in investing and withdrawing deposits, so as to hold out the greatest inducements to invest, and at the same time to meet the sudden exigencies of sailors wanting money for their outfit, or any other necessary purpose.
3rdly. To afford facilities for providing provision for seamen's families during their absence at sea.
4thly. To receive the wages of sailors on their behalf from their employers.
5thly. When desired, to purchase annuities for seamen, and to invest their money in the funds when exceeding the amount allowed by law to be in the savings-bank.
6thly. To keep a register of depositors wanting ships, for. the purpose of being referred to by ship-owners wanting steady men.
7thly. To provide for distributing savings and receiving wages
in case of death. 8thly. To act in every possible way as the stewards and friends of the depositors.
Lastly. To apply to parliament for whatever increased powers might be necessary to promote the above ends.
It seems to me not to admit of a doubt but that a savingsbank for seamen, properly set on foot, would be productive of much immediate good, and that it might ultimately lay the foundation of an entire change of habit in respect to prudence among that numerous and important class. It is a subject that comes particularly home to me, because I have had occasion so often to become acquainted, in my magisterial capacity, with the dreadful impositions, robberies, and profli
gacy, which are consequent upon the arrival of any number of vessels from distant parts of the globe ; and from the arts that are practised against sailors by gangs of confederates, in decoying, and stupifying them with liquor and with drugs, it is generally quite impossible to fix any proof of guilt. In fact, they are almost helplessly exposed to every combination of villany, and whether they are the accusers or the accused, they are almost equally objects of pity. I have known in. stances of sailors being robbed of fifty pounds or upwards, the very day they received it; but having been first rendered senseless, detection is impossible. Sometimes the day following their coming ashore, or even the same day, they are themselves brought up for drunkenness and disorder, the consequence of conspiracy against them; and when remonstrated with on their imprudence, they will pathetically lament their helpless situation. Their better protection is a subject which deeply concerns themselves and all who are connected with them. It is of great importance to ship-owners, and to the maritime interest generally. Society at large is much interested, from selfish motives, as well as from motives of humanity, in shutting up the fertile field, which the improvidence of sailors offers to vice and crime, and even a regard for the profligates and criminals themselves should induce an effort to remove temptation out of their way. British seamen do not stand in need of charity, but justice; and I hope to see their cause meet with the highest patronage and the most extensive support, and I have no doubt it will be so, if once taken up by those most competent to ensure its success. I should like to see a public meeting called by influential men, and a subscription opened for the purpose of establishing a savingsbank for seamen on the most efficient and attractive plan, in a handsome and commodious building, worthy of its object, with officers in the various departments most competent to discharge their duties.
As any attempt to render seamen provident would meet with all sorts of opposition, underhand
and open, from those who are interested in keeping them in their present state, and as their fears, and prejudices, and suspicions would be excited by all possible means, every practicable effort and allurement should be resorted to in the outset to effect a change. Success in the metropolis would doubtless be followed by similar results in the other sea-ports of the kingdom. If the plan is taken up by men of business and influence most qualified to bring it to maturity, I shall have great pleasure in contributing twenty guineas, and my services, if they can be made in any way available.
Though in what I have said of the habits of sailors, there is no exaggeration when applied to a great portion of them, yet is there another portion, and not an inconsiderable one, which is distinguished by prudence and regularity of conduct, and I believe this latter portion is now on the increase. It is, in my opinion, a very strong argument in favour of the establishment of a savings-bank for seamen on an efficient and extensive plan, that whilst it would powerfully contribute to rescue the improvident from the evils with which they are surrounded, it would at the same time afford facilities to the efforts of the well-conducted, especially in the beginning of their career, which under no other system could they so certainly enjoy. My view of such an institution is, that after being well started and complete in all its appointments, it should be made to pay its own expenses, and that it should not be artificially and precariously maintained by external aid. I would have a general superintendence by influential men, and all the rest matter of business. As I said before, British seamen do not want charity, but justice; and I should consider any effort now made in their behalf, only as the payment of a debt due to them for past ill-treatment and neglect.
As the introduction of savings-banks will, I have no doubt, eventually prove to have been the foundation of an entirely
new era in the habits and condition of the labouring classes, I subjoin, as an interesting record, the following extract from Mr. Hutchinson's observations :
“ It is somewhat remarkable, that although a savings bank was established at Tottenham, ovly seven miles from London, in 1804, the attention of the public was not directed to the subject until 1810, when the Reverend H. Duncan, of Ruthwell, published a paper, in which he proposed to the gentlemen of the county of Dumfries the establishment of banks for savings in the different parishes in the district, and established one in his own parish in that year, not being then aware that a similar institution had been established at West Calder in 1807. Though some institutions, similar both in their principles and details, had been formed before the parish bank of Ruthwell, yet it was the first of the kind which was regularly and minutely organized and brought before the public; and, further, as that society gave the impulse, which has so widely spread through the United Kingdom, it is in all fairness entitled to the appellation of the parent society, although the original society was the charitable bank at Tottenham. It is a curious fact, that London, which should be, and generally is, among the first to lead in all matters of public interest, was, in this instance, among the last to follow, and that no institution of this kind of any note was opened in the metropolis till the end of January, 1816, when the London Savings-bank commenced its operations. It is no less curious that the first Act of Parliament passed relating to savingsbanks, was to encourage the establishment of them in Ireland, in the 57th year of George the Third, and that until very recently no act was passed relating to savings-banks in Scotland.”
THE ART OF ATTAINING HIGH HEALTH.
STATE OF THE MIND.—Attention to health has a powerful influence on the state of the mind, and the state of the mind has a powerful influence on health. There is one state of the mind which depends upon the health, and another which depends partly upon external circumstances. This latter state, though it cannot be altogether regulated by attention to health, may be materially affected by it, and depression may be diminished and buoyancy increased in a very considerable degree. Where there is nothing particularly to affect the mind in the way of good fortune or of bad, of annoyance or of pleasure, its state depends almost, if not entirely, upon the state of the health, and the same individual will be happy or miserable in the proportion that the health is regulated. I have known cases of people, who laboured under depression to a most distressing degree, restored to high spirits merely by a long journey on horseback; and universally, exertion which is productive of interest to the mind, where there is no external cause of annoyance, raises the spirits to a state of positive enjoyment, which may be still further increased by attention to temperance, cleanliness, and moderation in sleep. Where the state of the mind depends entirely upon attention to health, I can only refer to what I have recommended in the different articles I have already given on the subject of health. Where it depends upon the influence of external circumstances, I shall also request attention to the tone which pervades all that I have written with reference to habits of living and modes of thinking; because I have throughout endeavoured to enforce doctrines founded on reasonableness and the spirit of contentment. It is good not to seek after those things, the disappointment of missing which is greater than the pleasure of at