COMMERCIAL TRAVELLERS AND THE MONEY-LENDING INQUIRY. THANKS TO MR. YERBURGH. The Commercial Travellers' Association are energetically identifying themselves with the crusade against the usurers who abuse the money-lending system of the country. The hon. Parliamentary agent to the association, Mr. T. E. Wing, has written to Mr. Yerburgh, M.P., through whose motion the Parliamentary Committee was granted, in the following terms:— I am requested by the representatives of the Commercial Travellers' Association, in conference assembled, to thank you for your great services to the commercial world generally in obtaining the appointment of the Special Committee of Inquiry re money-lending, the evidence before which must have startled the trading world. I have never more heartily endorsed public action, nor have my association ever more enthusiastically emphasised zeal in the common weal than in this matter. You may rely on our association assisting you in any wise action you may take in clearing the com- mercial world of those diabolical wreckers. Kindly convey to Mr. Farrow our thanks for the heroism he has displayed in the exposure of these wretches. The attitude of the Commercial Travellers' Association in this matter is inspired by the knowledge that during recent years firms having business relations with small retail traders have suffered enormously through the operations of unprincipled money-lenders, who put before general traders in financial diffi- culties tempting advertisements in reference to cash advances. Money is advanced at extortionate rates of interest, and the result too frequently is that all the property of the dealer is seized by the money-lender, leaving the wholesale trader minus any assets. The Commercial Travellers' Association claims to be interested in everything which tends to financial morality and the protection of the wholesale trader. They say that when whole- sale traders are affected by the operations of the money-lenders, they, their representatives, suffer in many ways, and it is their bounden duty to help to purify trade and commerce as against a class of people who live by extortion and the appropriation of other people's goods under the euphonious term of realising on their bill of sale. The Hull Chamber of Commerce, following in the footsteps of the Nottingham Chamber, have just passed a resolution to the effect that in view of the recent revelations in the money- lending inquiry before the House of Commons Committee, Government be urged to bring in a Bill to make the registration of the names of partners in trading firms compulsory.
BOARDS OF GUARDIANS. + WIRRAL. The fortnightly meeting of the Wirral Board of Guardians was held on Wednesday morning at the Clatterbridge Workhouse, Spital, under the chairmanship of Mr. William Knowles. It appeared from the Wirral Union accounts for the year ending Lady Day this year that the total acreage of the townships comprising the union is 45,458; that the popu- lation in September, 1891, was 39,623; and that the ratable value of property on the 30th September, 1896, was £ 252,038. The balance in favour of all the Unions on Lady Day last year was X961 8s. 5d.; there had been X13,78,3 contributed from the rates, which, with EJO 8s. 8d. from other sources, made a total of £ 14,755 7s. Id. The common charges amounted to E4,503 18s. 10d., and county and police rates to 17,554 14,3. 10d., leaving a balance in favour of the parishes on Lady Day this year of £ 2,681 8s. 9d. The total expenditure and balances for 1896 amounted to R12,960 Is. 3d., as against C14,755 7s. Id. this year, making an increase for this year of S,1,795 5s. 10d. The total amount paid in salaries to union officers during the year was S887 5s. 4d. The cost per head of inmates in the workhouse per week amounted to 3s. 4 5-10d. HA WARDEN. At the fortnightly meeting of this Board, at Broughton, on Friday, Mr. Peter Wilcock pre- siding, Miss M. B. Davies, Wallasey, was engaged on a month's trial as assistant matron at the Workhouse. There was only one applica- tion for the post.
CLOSE OF THE DEE SALMON SEASON. + Our Connah's Quay correspondent writes :— The season which has just closed is regarded on all hands as the most unprofitable that the fishermen can remember. Throughout the season there have not been any of the large hauls which usually characterise the Dee salmon fishery in the months of June and July, and during which period in former years the fishermen have netted sufficient to recoup the heavy expenditure necessary at the commence- ment of each season. On all points of the river the scarcity of fish has been most noticeable, and the men employing trammel and draft nets have keenly felt the unusually small take of fish. It is well known that a trammel net licence costs j615, and a draft net licence R5 for a season. There is certainly a great disparity between these amounts, but fish generally are so much more numerous in the lower waters of the river where trammel net fishing is carried on that the men employing these nets early in the season earn the difference in the licence. The majority of experienced fishermen are engaged with the trammel nets. The history of the fishery this season, however, proves that the draft net fishermen have been most fortunate, and that many of the trammel net fishermen have worked for weeks together without taking a single fish. The fishermen, as a body, cannot attribute the scarcity to any particular cause, but they consider the exceptionally dry season and consequently the absence of any great quantity of fresh water has had a disastrous effect. Many of the men are much distressed, and have a long winter before them with very precarious employment. The mussel fishery has now commenced, and if the beds in Dawpool will yield the same large quantities as last season, the men for a time will be profitably employed. Coarse fish, such as flukes, plaice, and codlings, are reported as fairly plentiful, and ready sales can be effected for this class of fish at remunerative priees.
WREXHAM, MOLD, AND CONNAH'S QUAY RAILWAY.—The half-yearly meeting of the Wrexham, Mold, and Connah's Quay Railway Company was held on Tuesday in Manchester. Mr. W. Pollitt, who presided, said that the working for the half-year bad not been satis- factory, although there had been an increase in the passenger and parcels taaffic. MARRIAGE OF ME. W. B. BRIERLEY.—The marriage of Mr. W. B. Brierley, Mus. Bac., Oxon, organist and musical director to His Grace the Duke of Westminster at Eaton, with Miss Laura Fanny, second daughter of the late Mr. Ralph Graham, of Stockton-on-Tees, took place on Tuesday at the church of the Holy Cross, Whorlton-in-Cleveland, the officiating clergyman being the Rev. J. A. Sharrock, M.A., vicar of Holy Trinity, Stockton-on-Tees. MR. RHODES AND SOUTH AFRicA.-A hearty public reception was given at Salisbury on Wednesday to Mr. Cecil Rhodes, who, in reply to an address, said that his con- duct at the recent Parliamentary Inquiry into South African affairs would be judged 50 years hence. He declared that his whole future should be directed to promoting the unity of the various South African States, and that his policy would be clear and open to that end. Epps's COCOA.—GRATEFUL AND COMFORTING.— U By a thorough knowledge of the natural laws which govern the operations of digestion and, nutrition, and by a careful application of the fino properties of well-selected COCOA, Mr. Epps has provided for our breakfast and supper a delicately flavoured beverage which may save us many heavy doctors' bills. It is by the judicious use of such articles of diet that a constitution may be gradu- ally built up until strong enough to resist every tendency to disease. We may escape many a fatal shaft by keeping ourselves well fortified with pure blood and a properly nourished frame.Civil Service Gazette.-Made simply with boiling water or milk.—Sold only in packets and pound tins, by Grocers, labelled—JAMES EPPS & Co., Ltd., Homoeopathic Chemists, London."—Also makers of Epps's Cocoaine or Cocoa-Nib Extract: Tea- like: A thin beverage of full flavour, now with many beneficially taking the place of tea. Its active principle being a gentle nerve stimulant, supplies the needed energy without unduly exciting the system.
THE BISHOP OF CHESTER AND CONSECRATION FEES. -0 At a meeting of the Crewe Town Council on Wednesday, a discussion took place upon a pro- posal to apply to the Bishop of Chester for the consecration of a further portion of the cemetery. The ctergy of the town had repre- sented to the CoufSjil that there was a lack of consecrated space for burial, and asked the Council to memorialise the bishop to consecrate additional ground. The Council objected to this unless the clergy of the town would agree to allow Nonconformist ministers performing the burial service in the consecrated portion to take the fees. For some time one or two of the clergymen held out against the proposal.—Mr. C. H. Pedley said he had seen the Bishop of Chester, and his lordship said he was strongly in favour of the clergy giving up their rights to the fees in these cases. As to the question of fees for consecrating the additional ground, he suggested that the Council should pay them, but a majority of the Council declined to sanction any such payment out of the rates. The bishop had communicated with the clergy, with the result that they had signed an under- taking not to claim the fees for burials in consecrated ground by Nonconformist ministers, and the vicar of Christ Church (the Rev. J. G. Howson) had written stating that he would make himself responsible for the amount of fees on the consecration ef the new portion of the cemetery.—Alderman Briggs moved that the question should be referred to the General Purposes Committee for further consideration. He did not see that it was just to hand over their civil rights and privileges along with the deed of consecration. He thought they might get better terms from the Bishop.—The Mayor pointed out that neither the Bishop nor the clergy could bind their successors in a matter of that kind. They had obtained all they had asked for.—Alderman Briggs Can the Bishop appoint a chaplain, fix his salary, and charge it to the Corporation ?-The Town Clerk said there was no power in a cemetery like theirs to appoint a chaplain.—Mr. G. Wallis said the Council had obtained all that the Noncon- formists asked for, or desired, and he thought it was a very happy termination of the question. —It was agreed by 14 to 8 to accept the Bishop's undertaking, and the vicar of Crewe's offer.
PUBLIC RIGHTS AT FLOOKERSBROOK. «, DISCUSSION AT CHESTER DISTRICT COUNCIL. At Saturday's meeting of the Chester Rural District Council, the clerk (Mr. W. Turnock) read the following resolution which he had received from Mr. James Prince, the clerk to the Newton Parish Council:—" That the clerk inform the Chester Rural District Council of the obstruction and interference by the Trustees of the Flookersbrook Improvement Act, 1876, with a road leading from the Ermine Hotel in an easterly direction past the Old Hall on the main road from Chester to War- rington, and request the District Council to obtain the removal of the said obstruction, which interferes with the public traffic over the said road." Mr. C. A. EWING said he was a member of the Newton Parish Council, and he should like to say that the road had been considered a public road ever since the Act of Parliament of 1876, and lately the trustees had put an obstruction across it. It was an important matter not only to the inhabitants of Newton and Hoole, but also Chester, because they had equal rights vested in the road. He gave notice that at the next meeting of the District Council he should propose a motion calling attention to the matter. The CLERK expressed the opinion that the District Council had no jurisdic- tion in the matter. The road did not belong to the District Council, the Flookersbrook trustees having a special Act of Parliament of their own under which they maintained it. If the inhabitants or any person thought there was an injustice, the remedy seemed to be for the people who thought there was an injustice to throw the gate down. Mr. EWING said with all respect to the clerk he had taken a solicitor's opinion on the subject, and he said the Council had jurisdiction. The CLERK: So far asI know at present, we have no jurisdiction in the road. They have absolute power over it under a special Act of Parliament. We cannot get over that. Mr. EWING repeated that he did not agree with the clerk, and he did not think Mr. Turnock's argument would hold water. The area within the prescribed limits of the Act, included the Ermine Hotel and also new streets which the District Council had adopted as public streets. Therefore, according to Mr. Turnock, the trustees would be justified i in putting a barrier across these streets. That did not seem common sense to him. He should like to have the opinion of some of the members of the District Council upon the matter, because it was an important one. The CHAIRMAN (Mr. R. T. Richardson): You will put your notice in writing will you ? Mr. EWING: Certainly. A resolution was also read from the Newton Parish Council notifying their intention to oppose the Chester Corporation extension scheme.
TRAGIC SUICIDE AT CHESTER. ♦ 'BETTER DEAD THAN LIVING.' THE BODY NOT IDENTIFIED. Another sad case of suicide with carbolic acid has to be recorded. At midnight on Thurs- day, P.C. Pruett, of the City Police Force, was informed by Mr. Jas. Owens, of 23, Watergate- street Row, that a man in the Row was behaving in a suspicious manner. The officer there- upon immediately went to the Row, being just in time to see the man take the fatal dose out of a bottle. He shouted to him What are you doing ?" and snatched the bottle from him. The only reply he received was I have done it." The bottle was labelled Carbolic acid. Poison.' The constable had in the meantime signalled for assistance, and Inspector Culliford was promptly on the spot. Drs. Hopkins and Harrison were sent for, and pending their arrival Inspector Culliford and P.C. Pruett gave the man lime water. Dr. Harrison applied the stomach pump to the man, and after doing all he could for him, re- commended that he should be taken to the Infirmary, where the unfortunate fellow died. He is a stranger, and is aged about fifty years, his name being unknown. He has dark brown hair, and a beard turning grey, and was wearing a brown jacket, tweed trousers, low boots, and a soft felt hat. In his pocket was found a railway notice bill, on which was written the following pathetic message:—" I am a mechanic out of work. I am knocked up with tramping from place to place, and cannot get food. I am better dead than living." THE INQUEST. Mr. E. Brassey, city coroner, held an enquiry into the case on Friday afternoon at the Infirmary.-The Coroner said the police had made exhaustive enquiries about deceased, but had failed as yet to identify him. His photo- graph, however, could be taken before his burial, for the purpose of identification.—James Owens, residing in Watergate Row, said about 11.30 the previous night he noticed from his house a man sitting in the row on the stall opposite, acting in a somewhat suspicious manner, and watching around him as if looking if anybody was about. Presently a policeman came past, and witness drew his attention to the man.-P.C. Pruett deposed to finding deceased in the row in an excited condition. Witness turned his lamp on the man's face, and at that moment deceased snatched a bottle from his coat, and putting it to his mouth, appeared to take a big gulp of the contents. Witness took the bottle from him, and the man then said, i I have done it; it is all over." The bottle (produced) was at present two-thirds full of car- bolic acid, but witness could not say whether it was full before deceased drank of it. Other policemen came to witness' assistance, and Dr. Harrison also arrived. The man was eventually taken to the Infirmary. Deceased had in his possession nothing except the railway notice bill. Dr. Harrison said he found deceased in an unconscious state, smelling of carbolic acid. He had bad an injection of ether, which had partially revived him. Deceased was ultimately removed to the Infirmary.-Dr. Emmerson, Infirmary surgeon, said deceased was admitted about two o'clock that morning, and died about half an hour afterwards. The body was fairly well nourished. —A verdict was returned that deceased com- mitted suicide, but there was no evidence to shew his state of mind.
A man named Caldwell has committed suicide at Liverpool by taking carbolic acid.
DEATH OF A HOOLE COUNCILLOR'S WIFE. ♦ FATAL FALL DOWNSTAIRS. A VICTIM TO DRINK. Mrs. Elizabeth Ball, aged 35 years, the wife of Mr. J. T. Ball, a member of the Hoole District Council, residing in Derby Place, Hoole, has died under painful circum- stances, as the result of an accidental fall downstairs at midnight on the 24th ult. The following morning, as she lay in a comatose state, a doctor was called in, but Mrs. Ball never completely recovered consciousness, and death supervened the following Monday afternoon. The inquest, at which some very painful revelations were made, was held at the Ermine Hotel on Tuesday evening, before the county coroner, Mr. Bate. The enquiry was of a pro- longed character, occupying almost three hours. The first witness was John Thomas Ball, husband of the deceased, who, examined by the coroner, said he and his late wife had resided at 16, Derby-place, Hoole, for four or five years- since the house was built. What have been the habits of your wife ? She was not a teetotaller ?—Am 1 bound to answer that ? Oh yes.—She has not been a teetotaller. Was she what you would call addicted to drink ?—Much; yes. For how long had she been addicted to drink ?—Three or four years to my knowledge. Continuing, he said he left home on the previous Tuesday morning about nine o'clock. Was your wife all right then ?—Fairly so, yes. What do you mean by fairly so ?—Well, she was more or less in an excited state for some weeks past. Did you go home again at dinner time ?-I did not go home till night, between six and seven. Can you tell us what was your wife's con- dition then ?-She was very excited. Her cousin and my sister were with her. What happened when you reached home ?— She began pulling me about and carrying on the same as she usually does. You say she was in an excited state. Was that from- drink ?-Yes. Did she say anything before she pulled you about ?—She asked me why I had not come home sooner. Was she what you would call drunk ?- Practically so, yes. I could not swear whether the front door was open or not. I will tell you what occurred. I had got a lamp there in the kitchen, which she had been pulling all to bits, and trying to put it together again. I said I would make it right while she got the tea ready, and then she started of me, and said I did not know how to put it right. She got hold of me by the shirt sleeves, until the two ladies present tore her away from me. I tried to pacify her, and then about ten minutes to eight I went out. I suppose there were no blows struck ?—Yes, she smacked me three or four times on the face. Did you strike her ?-I did with my flat hand on the side of her face. I could not resist doing so. Are you sure she was very drunk, because you would not tell a woman who was the worse for drink to get the tea ready ?-Well, she was a woman of this sort: it did not matter if she was as drunk as a wheelbarrow, she could always walk as straight as an arrow, but those who were used to her could tell her state. Proceeding, he said when he went out he left his wife a shilling on the table, as she wanted money, and that pacified her. Her cousin and his sister remained with her. You did not return till about eleven o'clock that night ?-I should think, to the best of my recollection, it would be half-past eleven. Who let you in?—The missis let me in. What was her condition then P—She was all right for a few minutes, until she began playing steam with me. Began what ?—Began pitching on to me, and I coaxed her. What was it about ?—Nothing in particular. She usually played steam with me for nothing at all. Does that mean you and she quarrelled ?- It was not a matter of quarrelling; it was quarrelling on one side. She quarrelled with me, and I never said anything to her at the time. Can you give us any idea of the cause of it ?—Only from the excited state she was in. Can you tell us something she said?—No, I could not say what she said in particular. Can you tell us anything she complained about ?—She complained about nothing in par- ticular, but started pulling me about. I persuaded her to go to bed, and we eventually went upstairs. Do you wish the jury to understand that she was not quite in her right mind ?— She could not be in her right mind when I had her in the asylum. How long ?—She was in the asylum through Dr. Lees' instrumentality for drink about eighteen months ago, at Newton-le-Willows; and also at Rhyl with a nurse for a month with the same complaint. How long is that since ?-I could not say for certain-some part of last year. Cannot you give the jury any idea what was the cause of her pulling you about when you returned on Tuesday night ?-I have got no cause, not as I know of. She had no cause to my knowledge. Have you no recollection what it was ?-I have a recollection of her pulling me about, and then she started to scream, because I tried to pull her hands off me, which I did do so. She must have had some cause for it. If I suggest you were not quite sober, Mr. Ball, would that be incorrect ?-I was fairly sober, I think. You would not say you were sober ?-I would not swear so, certainly not. Was that the cause why she pulled you about when you got home on Tuesday night ?-There was no cause at all that I know of, as I said a few minutes ago. I was practically sober. I had had perhaps three drinks in the evening, or four, and that is all I had had. It would not make me drunk. What time did you retire to bed that night ? —It would be between half-past eleven and twelve. I coaxed her, and she came up to bed with me. Was she what you would call drunk then ?— Yes, she was as drunk as she could possibly be. Before I got into bed she began pulling me about in the room, and I got hold of her, and held her hand. She screamed. Can you give me any idea what was the cause of it ?-I could not really. Do you put it down to her state of mind ?— She was hysterical. Now what happened afterwards P-I coaxed her to bed the best I could, but she no sooner got into bed than she got out again, and the next moment she made towards the door. I thought she was going to the lavatory, or, perhaps, for a drink, which she often does. Is there gas in that bedroom ?-There is gas, but it was not on that night; it has not been on this quarter. We used a lamp, which was put out when we got into bed. She went to the door, and the next moment I heard bump, bump, bump, down the stairs. What did you do then ?—When she fell down- stairs, I immediately got up, and I almost caught her before she got downstairs. In my hurry I almost fell myself in trying to catch her. She was on the floor in the hall when I got to her. In what position ?—That I could not say, because I picked her up in the dark imme- diately, and I carried her to bed. Did she speak ?-No. Did she say anything after she got out of bed ?—No; she never spoke a word to me. Did she scream or anything of that kind when she got out ?-No. Not in falling downstairs ?-No, she did not make a noise when she was falling downstairs. What did you take her to be ?-I took her to be drunk, and she seemed snoring. I struck a match, and looked at her. She was breathing heavy-like as if in a drunken sleep. She was awake before she fell down ?—She could not fall downstairs unless she was awake. You could not say she was walking in her sleep ?—No, no; because she had only just got into bed. Do you wish us to think she was simply in a drunken sleep ?-That is what I considered her to be. Did you examine her at all ?—I just looked at her, and simply struck a match—a couple of matches, I think it was. You could not see anything wrong ?—Nothing wrong as I could notice. There was no blood. You had no idea she was unconscious from injuries ?—She was unconscious, yes. But had you any idea at the time ?-No, I had no idea but what she was in a drunken sleep. If she was sufficiently awake to walk to the top of the stairs, falling downstairs would not throw her into a sleep. What made you think she was asleep ?-For the simple reason that I have had so many times to carry her to bed after she had fallen down in the kitchen. She fell the previous Saturday night down five stairs. That did not send her to sleep on that occa- sion ? Oh, no, not on that occasion. Continuing, the witness stated that on the following morning his wife was still apparently asleep, and, becoming anxious, he called in a neighbour named Mrs. Ashley to look at her. They went up to the bedroom together, and witness shook the deceased's arm in order to awaken her, but did not succeed. Mrs. Ashley advised him to let her sleep it off, and he went to his business shortly after nine o'clock, leaving her in Mrs. Ashley's charge. About noon his eldest son, aged twelve years, came and told him his mother had not awakened, and he thereupon sent Mrs. Ashley a note telling her to call in Dr. Butt. He received another message about three o'clock, when he at once took a cab home. Up to that time no doctor had seen the deceased. He went straight for Dr. Burges, who came, and so did Dr. Pitt Taylor. His wife remained unconscious up to the time of her death, which occurred in wit- ness' presence, at twenty-five minutes to four on Monday afternoon. There was also a con- sultation on the Saturday between Dr. Taylor and Dr. Elliott. I suppose between you and your wife there was consequently trouble, owing to her drink- ing habits ?- Yea, she has often been trouble- some to me. I have never done anything wrong to her. Has she been in the habit of screaming ?—Oh yes, very much. She would go and sit on the doorstep and on the garden step and scream out if I had never been near her. Do you say she did that without any cause whatever ?—Without any provocation, or any cause. Very hysterical she was. The witness was asked by Superintendent Leah, of the County Constabulary to explain how, after hearing the bump, bump, bump,' he was able to jump out of bed and get to the bottom of the stairs in time nearly to save his wife ?-He explained the position of the bed, the head of which was three feet from the door. There was a similar space between the door and the top of the stairs. Then came three stairs, and a small landing leading to the other part of the house. It was down these three stairs that the deceased stumbled, and made an attempt to save herself by grasping the bannister. Hearing this, witness at once jumped out of bed, but was not in time to save the deceased from falling down the main flight of stairs. Then she had not fallen before you got out of bed?—She had stumbled, but she had not got to the bottom. Had you a second quarrel with your wife downstairs when you arrived home at 11.30that night ?—No, I did not quarrel with her. She only began pitching at me and shouting at me. Did you quarrel in the dining-room that night at 11.30 ?—I could not say. What persons were in the house besides you and your wife at that time ?—Nobody after I closed the door, only the two boys. When you got in the house who did you find besides your wife ?-That I could not say. Was there anybody in ?-I could not say for certain whether there was. But could you try to think, Mr. Ball ?-No, I cannot. I don't know who was in. I could not say for certain, because I have had so many humbugs with her. By a Juror He did not strike his wife in the bedroom. Neither the noise of the quarrelling, nor the falling downstairs, disturbed the children, who were asleep in another room. Do you keep a servant ?-I had not got one then. I had sacked her some days before, on the Monday week before. Another Juror When you heard the stumble, the deceased had fallen from the top on to the landing beneath, and was endeavouring to recover herself. You then jumped up, but before you reached her she had fallen down the main flight of stairs? Is that what you mean ? Witness: Yes, now you have hit it about the same as 1 have hit it. She made a grasp at the pillar or banister, and missed it. Another Juror: Did you not think it very strange, after her being wide awake before she fell downstairs, that she should be in a sound sleep when you picked her up ? Witness: If you had lived with her for two years, you would know something about it. Many a time I have picked her up in an un- conscious state, and taken her to bed, and she has been in bed three or four days afterwards. That is why I took no notice of this, to a certain extent. Dr. George Harrison, who is surgeon to the county police, deposed to making a post-mortem examination. There were seven bruises upon the body, one about the size of a shilling on the point of the right shoulder, one the same size on the right knee cap, a bruise about the size of the palm of the hand above the left hip, some very small bruises on the left forearm, two bruises, which were healed over, on the left elbow, and another bruise very small at the corner of the right eyebrow. He opened the skull. and found a large clot of blood on the right side of the brain, between the membranes and the brain, principally behind. The small brain was beginning to be disintegrated. The effusion of blood on the brain was undoubtedly the cause of death. The CORONER: Could you judge from the other bruises on the body whether they were bruises that would have been made about a week prior ?-Witness: They would have been made about that time I should say. And from their character can you say whether they were all the same date ?-I should say they were all about th e same date. Were they injuries such as would be caused by a fall downstairs in the way the last witness described ?—It is just possible they might have been caused in that way. Superintendent Leah Could all the bruises have been caused by a fall downstairs ?— Witness: It is quite possible, but I am not going to say it is certain they were caused in that way. Might I ask if it is likely they were, judging from the character of the bruises ?-I don't think I can go as far as that. The FOREMAN of the jury: Do you think it consistent that Ball, being an unprofessional man, would think that she was in a drunken sleep if he looked at her by matchlight ?- Witness Perfectly, considering the character we have heard of the woman. Beatrice Moore, domestic servant, employed by Mr. R. Beck, 14, Derby-place, Hoole (next door to Mr. Ball's residence), heard the deceased screaming on the previous Tuesday about half- past seven. Again about midnight witness heard her daring her husband to abuse her. She shouted Dare, dare, abuse me if you dare." Witness did not hear any fall down- stairs. She had been in Mr. Beck's employ- ment for 15 months, and it was nothing unusual to hear the deceased behaving in this manner; in fact, when they did not hear her, they used to wonder what was the matter. The screaming always took place indoors. Witness thought she used to scream for nothing. By Superintendent Leah: She saw the deceased at 4.30 on Tuesday afternoon, when she appeared to be sober. It was the first tim.e she had heard Mrs. Ball screaming at such a late nour. Astced why she thought the deceased was in the habit of screaming for nothing, the witness said because she could not hear Mr. Ball say anything. The CORONER Can you recall any occasion when she screamed in Mr. Ball's absence ?— Witness On one occasion she ran the servant out into the backyard, and screamed when Mr. Ball was not there. John Hulse, Faulkner-street, another neigh- bour, said Mrs. Ball and the servant were usually rowing three or four times a week, but they never heard Mr. Ball's voice and could not tell whether he was in. He never saw any cause for the screaming, which always occurred in the house. Witness heard screams proceed- ing from the house on the morning in question between twelve and one o'clock. Florence Ball, sister -of the deceased's husband, said she took the two children home from their grandmother's on the Tuesday night about 7.30. They were afraid to meet their mother who was drunk and like a madwoman. She thrashed them and picked up a poker to ene of them. Though she was able to open the door, the deceased was not capable of knowing what she was doing. A quarter of an hour later, Mr. Ball came home. He was quite sober, and asked the deceased to go to the theatre. The deceased seemed to get worse after his arrival. She asked witness for money to get drink, and went out to fetch it while her husband sat in the dining-room waiting for his tea. When witness had prepared the tea, the deceased would not allow him to have it, and picked up a chair with which she threatened to knock his brains out. As she would not sit down, he slapped her face, but not with sufficient force to hurt a child. She almost tore the shirt off his back. Sarah Annie Parr, the deceased's cousin, was also present during part of the quarrel, and gave corroborative evidence. After the husband and Miss Ball had both left, the deceased, who was a great deal the worse for drink, sat down in the rocking chair, and began to cry. She said it was through the servant, but she did not know what she was saying half her time. By Supt. Leah: The deceased said Is it not too bad ? Nellie (the servant) has been so nasty this week end." The servant was not then in the house, having received notice from Mr. Ball, and left a week previously. A Juror: What was the nastiness between the servant and her ? Did she explain herself ? -Witness: No, she never explained herself. Of course, I did not wait to ask her any more questions. Another Juror: Did she say what was all through the servant ?-Witness: No, she did not say. She alluded to Nellie as being the cause of some of the bothers there, but she did not say whether it was through her on Tuesday night. Another juror: Was it that she would not attend upon her, or refused to go messages, or do you know what it was ?-Witness: No, eir, I could not say. In answer to the Coroner, the witness added that she went to the house for some washing. Mrs. Ball carried the lighted lamp upstairs, and helped to get out the clothes, but she staggered so much that witness was afraid of her falling. Mrs. Ashley, 17, Faulkner-street, gave evidence as to the deceased's intemperate habits, and said on the Tuesday night she was very far gone in drink. On the following morning, when Mr. Ball called witness into the house, the deceased was breathing quite naturally, and witness thought she was just sleeping nicely. Witness saw her again several times during the morning, and did not get anxious about her until she sent- to Mr. Ball about two o'clock. In reply Mr. Ball sent a note (which she produced) directing her to call in Dr. Butt, as the deceased might have hurt herself in her fall downstairs. Witness never saw Mr. Ball strike his wife, though the latter had struck him many times in her presence. Deceased often screamed when there was no one near her. Edwin Ashley, husband of the last witness, said he fetched drink for the deceased on three occasions on the previous Tuesday, two half- pints during the day, and a pint at supper time. She was at that time sitting in his house drunk, and his wife took her home a little after eleven. Supt. Leah: You admit that you fetched her beer when she was drunk ?-Witness: Yes, the supper beer. Dr. Pitt Taylor, who is temporarily in charge of Dr. Lees' practice, was the last witness, and his testimony bore out the evidence of Dr. Harrison and other witnesses. The CORONER, in summing up, said the inquiry had been a prolonged one, but the cir- cumstances of the case and the rumours that got about quite justified a full enquiry into all the facts. There was no evidence to contradict that of the husband. That was the only evidence they had before them, and although there were certain rumours about, he asked the jury to dismiss those entirely from their minds in coming to a decision. After some deliberation in private, the jury found that death was caused by a clot of blood on the brain caused by an accidental fall down- stairs.
THE DEE MUSSEL INDUSTRY. « The mussel season in the Dee opened on Wednesday. Our Park gate correspondent writes: For several weeks active preparations have been made here for the I first,' the small boats used for the purpose being thoroughly overhauled and re-coated, and the gigantic mussel rakes prepared for action. At midnight on the Tuesday the fishermen were all astir, and most of them sailed away before two a.m., lying off the mussel beds at Dawpool until it was light enough to work. Most of them made good bags, and their return in the bright sunshine at noon presented an interesting and picturesque spectacle, and for several hours carts were busy taking bags from the boats to fche railway station. There were about 90 bosfts out, and about 70 of these hailed from Parkgate and Heswall, the majority of the others coming from Connah's Quay. Some 420 bags were despatched from Parkgate alone as the result of the morning's work. The mussels are very fine, but the fishermen express the opinion that the beds will soon be exhausted.
L SUDDEN DEATH IN A CHESTER HOTEL. 0 An inquest was held on Tuesday evening at the Bull and Stirrup Hotel by Mr. F. Turner, deputy coroner, on the body of Robert Calcutt, who died suddenly at the Washington Hotel, City-road, Chester, on the previous Sunday morning.—Wm. Mollan, a relative of deceased, deposed to having come from Belfast on account of deceased's death. Deceased was 40 years of age, and had been acting as confidential clerk to a firm of wholesale drapers in Belfast. Wit- ness last saw him alive about three weeks ago. Deceased had never complained to him of ill- ness, and always seemed in perfect health.— Mary Elizabeth Newall, proprietress of the Washington Hotel, stated that deceased arrived at the hotel about half-past eleven on Saturday night, and asked for a bed. He was shewn to his room, and he requested to be called the next morning at eight o'clock. On Sunday morning the boots told witness that deceased had made no answer to his calling. The room was then entered, and the gentleman was lying in bed. They noticed he was dead.—Thos. Pringle, boots at the hotel, said that deceased, when going to bed on Saturday night, told him he had had a long journey from Harrogate, and felt very tired, and required a good night's rest.—Dr. Harrison deposed to making a post-mortem examination of the body, and finding that death was due to heart disease. It was a very bad case of heart disease, of long standing, and witness could not understand deceased not com- plaining strongly.—Police Constable Dougherty deposed to being called to the hotel on Sunday morning. Having made a search of deceased's property, he found nothing of special note.— A verdict was given in accordance with the medical evidence.
CYCLISTS AND RoAD RACING. An im- portant cycling caser came before the Stour- bridge magistrates on Friday, eighteen members of the Stourbridge Cycling Club being summoned for furious riding. The alleged offence was on the occasion of the annual twenty-five miles road race of the club. Counsel for the defendants submitted that there was no intention to break the law. The police had never interfered before, and gave no warning this year.—The Bench said this thing was apparently being done daily in different places without notice being taken. They should not fine, but ordered payment of cosst only. NO MORE MEDICINE, PURGING OR EX- PENSE FOR INVALIDS AND CHILDREN. PERFECT DIGESTION, NERVOUS ENERGY, SOUND SLEEP, AND HEALTH RESTORED by Du BARRY'S DELICIOUS REVALUNTA AKABICA, which cures all disorders of the Stomach and Bowels, the Blood, the Nerves, Lungs, Liver, Bladder, Brain, Voice, and Breath-such as Constipation, Dyspepsia, Indigestion, Consumption, Diarrhoea, Dysentery, Influenza, Grippe, Acidity, Heartburn, Phlegm, Flatulency, Feverish Breath, Nervous, Bilious, Pulmonary, Glandular, Kidney and Liver Com- plaints, Debility, Cough, Asthma; Scarlet, Gastric, Enteric, Bilious, and Yellow Fevers, Spasms, Nephritis, Impurities and Poverty of Blood, Ague Rheumatism, Gout; Nausea and Vomiting after Eating, during Pregnancy, and at Sea; Eruptions, Sleeplessness, Atrophy, Wasting in Adults and Children. 50 years' invariable success with old and young, even in the most hopeless cases. 100,000 annual cures. Four times more nourishing than meat, and assimilating when all other food is re- jected it saves 50 times its cost in medicine. It rears also successfully the most delicate children. Sells-in tins at 2s. 3s. 6d. 21bs., 6s. 5lbs., 14s.; 121ba., 32s.; or about 2d. per meal. Also Du BARRY'S TONIC REVALENTA BISCUITS remove Nervous Debility and Sleeplessness in tins 3. 6d. and 6s. All tins carriage free on receipt of P.O.O. Du BARRY & Co., (Limited), No. 77, Regent-street, London, W.; and at all Stores, Grocers and Chemists everywhere. Depdt in this town DUTTON & SONS.
FLOWER SHOW AT LITTLE SUTTON. — The annual vegetable and flower show of the Little Sutton Allotment Society held on Satur- day was a decided improvement on any of its predecessors. The society appears not to aim at promoting a show of such an extensive descrip- tion as many within the district, but confines its efforts to the establishment of one more limited in number of classes, and withal a creditable one. The total number of entries was 440, an increase on the previous show. As already stated, the number of classes was limited, but competition throughout was most keen. The quality of the produce also in each class was very satisfactory, especially in the cottagers' section. Here the exhibits, particularly vege- tables, called for special admiration on account of their healthy mature appearance. In fact, good quality was the chief feature throughout the show. There was a good number of exhibits not for competition, including a beautiful collection of flowering plants, &c., sent by Messrs. Dicksons, Chester; a collection of coleus from Mrs. Hague (Ledsham), some delicate flowers with foliage from Mr. P. Owen (Capen- hurst), and ornamental plants from Mr. W. C. Jones. The judges were Mr. Nixon (gardener to Mr. P. Owen, Capenhurst), Mr. Fawcett (gardener to Mr. Hague, Ledsham), and Mr. Johnson (gardener to Mr. R. T. Richardson, Capenhurst Hall). Despite the stormy weather which prevailed the greater part of the day, the attendance was very satisfactory. To Mr. H. W. B. Porter, the secretary of the show, thanks are due for his valuable services. In the after- noon the village sports came off, and were favoured with fine if boisterous weather. The judges were Dr. Bredin and Mr. Beckett, and the programme passed off most successfully. The following is the PRIZE LIST. ALLOTMENT HOLDERS. Kidney potatoes 1, W. Lloyd 2, G. Mumford 3, G. Knight. Round potatoes 1, G. Mumford; 2, Brocklehurst; 3, W. Davies. Runner beans: 1, T. Ible; 2, W. Mulliner; 3, G. Knight. Peas 1, G. Knight; 2, W. Lloyd. Kidney beans: 1, H. Jones; 2, T. Ible; 3, R. Jones. Cabbages 1, W. MuUiner; 2, G. Wright'; 3, E. Brocklehurst. Autumn sown onions: 1, G. Wright; 2, G. Mumford; 3, R. Jones. Spring sown onions: 1, G. Knight; 2, G. Mumford; 3, G. Wright. Carrots: 1, G. Wright; 2, G. Mumford; 3, W. Davies. Parsnips: 1, G. Wright; 2, G. Knight. Vegetable marrows 1, W. Lloyd;12, G. Mumford 3, W. Mulliner. Turnips 1, G. Knight; 2, W. Brocklehurst; 3, T. Ible. Beetroots 1, T. Ible 2, H. Jones: 3, W. Davies. Red celery: 1, H. Jones 2, W. Lloyd; 3, R. Jones. Eschallots 1, R. Jones 2, T. Ible; 3, G. Mumford. Collection of vegetables: 1, H. Jones. Collection of cut flowers: 1, H. Jones; 2, T. Ible; 3, W. Brockle- hurst. Potatoes (four varieties): 1, R. Jones; 2 W. Mulliner; 3, W. Brocklehurst. COTTAGER'S. Kidney potatoes 1 G. Williams 2, W. Brooks; 3, G. Sutton. Round potatoes 1, W. Brooks 2 G. Williams 3, J. Bennion. Peas 1, G. Williams • 2, G. Knight; 3, E. Brooks. Runner beans 1, c! Miller; 2, G. Knight; 3, W. Lloyd. Cabbages: l" E. Mulliner; 2, W. Brooks; 3, G. Williams. Cauliflowers 1, W. Brooks; 2, J. Bennion; 3, G. Williams. Lettuce 1, G. Williams 3, Fletcher. Carrots: 1, J. Bennion; 2, R. Fletcher; 3, G. Wright. Parsnips 1, W. Ellis; 2, G. Wright; 3, J. Bennion. Autumn-sown onions 1, W. Brooks 2, 1. Knight; 3, H. Attwell. Spring-sown onions 1, W. Brooks; 2, J. Bennion 3, G. Wright. Red cabbages: 1, H. Attwell; 2, T. Knight; 3, J. Bennion 4, G. Williams. Vegetable marrows: G. Williams; 2, W. Ellis; 3, R. Jones. Turnips: 1, G. Williams 2, W. Ellis 3, G. Knight. Beetroot: 1, J. Bennion; 2, G. Williams; 3, W. Ellis. Tomatoes 1, J. Bennion; 2, H. Jones. Cucumbers: 1, H. Attwell 2, R. Spruce; 3, R. Fletcher. Red celery: 1, W. Ellis; 2, G. Williams 3, H. Attwell. White celery: 1, G. Williams; 2, J. Bennion; 3, W. Ellis. Cut flowers: 1, C. Miller 2, J. Bennion 3, W. Davies. Dahlias 1, E. J. Cash; 2, W. Brooks; 3, C.Miller. Window plants: 1, J. Bennion; 2, R. E. Arthur; 3, R. Fletcher. Asters (distinct): 1, C. Miller; 2, J. Bennion 3, T. Knight. Gladioli: 1, W. Brooks; 2, G. Williams; 3, E. J. Cash. Stocks (distinct): 1, W. Brooks; 2, W. E. Davies; 3, T. Knight. Culinary apples: 1, R. Spruce; 2, C. Miller; 3, T. Baugh. Dessert apples: 1, J. Sutton; 2, W. Brocklehurst; 3, C. Miller. Dark plums 1, T. Knight; 2, J. Sutton. Light plums: 1, C. Miller; 2, T. Knight; 3, J. Sutton. Pot herbs 1, C. Miller. Vegetables (eight kinds): 1, J. Bennion; 2, R. Fletcher. AMATEURS. Round potatoes 1, J. Taylor 2, G. Williams 3, C. Cash. Kidney potatoes 1, W. Brooks 2, G. Taylor; 3, J. Taylor. Vegetable marrows 1, J. Taylor; 2, G. Taylor; 3, G. Williams. Red celery: 1, W. Ellis; 2, J. Taylor; 3, G. Taylor. White celery 1, G. Taylor; 2, J. Taylor; 3, W. Ellis. Carrots 1, G. Taylor; 2, J. Taylor; 3 G. Williams. Parsnips 1, G. Taylor; 2, J. Taylor 3, G. Williams. Turnips 1, J. Taylor 2 G. Williams; 3, W. Ellis. Beetroot: 1, G. Taylor; 2, J. Taylor; 3, W. Ellis. Cucumbers 1, C. Cash. Autumn sown onions 1, G. Taylor. Spring sown onions 1, G. Taylor; 2, W. Brooks; 3, G. Williams. Lord Suffield apples 1, R. Fletcher .2, G. Taylor; 3, J. Taylor. Dessert apples 1, C. Cash; 2, G. Taylor. Dessert pears 1, W. Brooks. Light plums 1, W. Cross 2, C. Cash. Cut flowers (six varieties): 1, C. Cash; 2, W. E. Davies. Vegetables (eight kinds): 1, G. Taylor. OPEN. Dishes of fruit: 1, C. Cash. Plants in bloom 1, W. E. Davies. Begonias: 1, C. Cash; 2, W. E. Davies. Cut roses: 1, T. Jones; 2, W. Brooks. Asters (distinct): 1, W. E. Davies. Tomatoes 1, G. Taylor. Dahlias 1, G. Jones; 2, W. Brooks. Vegetables (eight kinds): 1, G. Taylor. Children's collection of wild flowers 1, Jessie Evans. Wild grasses: 1, W. Evans. Flowers (six varieties): 1, C. Miller. SPORTS. 100 yards flat race (handicap)—First heat: 1, T. F. Mansley, 4 yards; 2, James Dean, scratch. Second heat: 1, F. Home, 9 yards; 2, J. Henshaw, 8 yards. Third heat: 1, G. Cash, 10 yards; 2, J. Bennion, 10 yards. Final: 1, F. Home; 2, J. Henshaw; 3, J. Bennion.- Boys' race (220 yards handicap): 1, W. Taylor, scratch; 2, W. Cross, 12 yards.—Two miles bicycle handicap—First heat: 1, T. Shone, scratch; 2, T. Williams, 50 yards; 3, C. E. Cash, 150 yards. Second heat: 1, T. Salter, 30 yards; 2, R. Brooker, 60 yards; 3, W. Johnson, 100 yards. Final: 1, T. Shone; 2, T. Williams; 3, C. E. Cash.—220 yards flat race (handicap)- First heat: 1, R. E. Swift, 5 yards; 2, F. Home, 11 yards; 3, J. Henshaw, 12 yards. Second heat: 1, T. F. Mansley; 2, G. Cash, 15 yards; 3, C. Ketley, 7 yards. Final: 1, Swift; 2, Henshaw; 3, Home. Quarter-mile flat race handicap: 1, R. E. Swift, 5 yards; 2, J. Dean, scratch 3, G. Evans, 15 yards. Sack race (100 yards) 1, R. Putt; 2, Mason. One mile handicap: 1, G. E. Cash, 80 yards; 2, G. Evans, scratch; 3, T. Jones, 5 yards.
THE STRAIGHT TIP for the winner is anxiously sought for prior to any of our great races, and the joy or sorrow of the recipients is largely measured by the amount of money they afterwards win or lose. There is no uncertainty, however, or anguished suspense, as to the result of using Holloway's Pills and Ointment. After a fair trial the gain is sure and great. The Pills, taken occa- sionally in prescribed doses, keep the digestion in order, excite a free flow of healthy bile, and re- generate the impoverished blood with richer materials. The Ointment is a grand remedy for the removal of rheumatic pains, wounds, sores, ulcers, cuts, or bruises. HONOUR FOR A CHESHIRE HORTICULTURIST.— The London correspondent of the Manchester Guardian writes:—The Council of the Royal Horticultural Society having obtained the Queen's assent to the proposal to establish a medal in commemoration of the sixtieth year of Her Majesty's reign, to be awarded solely honoris causa for good work done in the domain of horticulture, have caused the new medal, which is to be known as.. the Victoria medal,' to be struck in gold. It has, I learn, been decided to confer it upon sixty horticulturists who have rendered eminent service in different p,L- 'I. orancnes oi norwcuicure, who are to hold it as a purely personal distinction. Among the sixty recipients are Dean Hole and the Roy. C. Wolley-Dod, of Malpas, Cneshirq. A PRIVATE HOTEL MYSTERY.—At St. Pancras, on Friday, an inquest was opened on the body of a woman found dead in bed at a private hotel in Guildford-street, London, where she had been staying with a man known by the name of Scott, who was afterwards arrested at Derby. Scott was present in court in charge of the police, and seemed much distressed. Mr. Turner, landlord of the hotel, said Scott and deceased came there on August 14th, the man giving the address Mr. and Mrs Scott, Gasworks, Ludlow. On Saturday last, as Scott failed to pay his bill. witness refused to supply him with further food, Scott left on Monday, and on;Tuesday the room door was burst open. The police stated that the woman was found dead in bed. In the room were an empty laudanum bottle, a blood- stained knife, and a towel. There were also letters signed W. S. Stormont,' one of which was addressed to Mrs. McLeon, of Liverpool, mother of the deceased. The writer declared "We have better mind to put an end to our existence by poison. My poor dear has gone. Laudanum has had no effect on me. I must try other means.The inquest was adjourned.
THE MONEY-LENDING INQUIRY. + THE GOMBEEN SYSTEM. RESULT OF MR. ASCROFT'S INQUIRIES.. It will be remembered that a few weeks ago Mr. R. Ascroft, M.P.—one of the most active members of the Select Committee of the House of Commons on Money-lending,—paid a visit to the West of Ireland, in order to investigate the gombeen system. That system was believed by several members of the committee—in- cluding its chairman, Mr. T. W. Russell-and other persons familiar with the social condition of the Irish people, to be the form of usury most rampant in Ireland, and a system pro- ductive of the greatest misery among the poorer farming and trading classes. Mr. Ascroft has just returned to Sedgley Ball, Prestwich, and has been good enough to make known the result of his inquiries in an interview with the representative of a news agency. Asked whether he had been successful in securing data which would throw light on the gombeen system as at present carried on in Ireland, Mr. Ascroft replied: Yes, I have obtained plenty of information, and I am bound to say it is hardly of the character I expected, after all I had heard as to the evils of the system before quitting England. The con- clusion to which the information I have so far gathered would point is that the gombeen man, as formerly known in Ireland, is dead and gone—speaking generally. The districts in which he may still survive are exceptional. But you found traces of him ?—Clearly. That he was a terrible affliction while living there is no doubt, and endless proofs are to. be had of his former existence and depredations. To what do you attribute his disappearance ? I attribute it to the banks. That they are responsible for his extinction I have no doubt. I chose as the field of my inquiries one of the poorest parts of Ireland—the north-west coast, extending round county Mayo. The gombeen system, if prevalent in the country, ought to be found flourishing there, as in that district there is an absence of loan offices. But I interviewed resident magistrates, lawyers, priests, clerks to justices, and other public men,. and I also came into contact with numerous tenant farmers, tradesmen, and people representing the peorest classes, and there was only one reply to my queries-that gombeenism was a thing of the past. I ascertained that a few of the poorest people still dealt on credit for goods, paying the tradesman an interest of, say, 20 per cent., but on every hand I was assured that the old business had been supplanted by the banks. Did you satisfy yourself that the banks have supplanted the gombeen system ?-I did. I went to the banks, and was allowed to examine their books and the bills given, and saw the charges made to the borrowers and I satisfied myself as to the charges made to the tenant farmers and tradesmen when the bills were not paid and had to be renewed. I cannot give you. the names of the bankR, but I can give you figures and facts which I gathered from four of those institutions. In 1896 one of these dis- counted nearly 4,000 small bills of from X2 and upwards. They have not bad to sue in five cases. during as many years. The bank drew the bills, and made no charge for so doing beyond the Id. or 2d. for the stamp. I picked out a few of the bills at random, and found that the charges on the bills for three months were as follow:-For 910, 39. 2d. £ 4, 2s.; X2, Is. £ 6, 2s. 6d.; £ 3,. Is. 6d.; X5, 2s. 5d.; 916, 5s.; X15 10s., 4s. 9d. The charges were exactly the same for renewals as for the original loans: and I ascertained that renewals are never refused if a man iff doing his best to pay. The general charge for discounting is 6 per cent., but if the surety is a depositor or a customer, 5 per cent. only is charged. Another bank discounted between 4,000 and 5,000 bills a year, and had been obliged to sue in a few cases, but had never sold up a man, and had not lost E30 in 10 years from small farmers. Their charges (on bills pro- duced) were: For 110 at two months ,2s. 6d., and at three months for X4, Is. 6d.; X100, £ 1 8s. R270, JE4 lB. 6d.; and £30, 8s. I found that a- renewal had been granted under the following terms:—A man borrowed JE5 on the 30th June, 1897, on a three months' bill; he repaid £ 3, and renewed a bill for X2 at two months, and was charged 6d. In another case, where £ 30 was borrowed at three months, the charge was 10s., with four renewals at 10s. each. In a. third case, on a loan of 98 for three months, 3s. was charged, and there were four renewals at 3s. each. A third bank discounted from 5,000 to 6,000 bills a year, and had never had to sue, and had never sold up a man for over twenty years. The charges on bills shewn were for one month :— £ 2 10s., 6d.; £ 15, lB. 9d.; £ 35 8s., 3s. 6d.; for three months-98, 3s.; C5, 2s. 6d. X6, 2s.; E3, Is. 6d.; X20, 6s. 3d.; £12, 4s. 3d. £14, 4s. 9d.; and for four months (with no surety)-9200, JE5 9s. Many of these loans were renewed several times on exactly the same terms. In a fourth case, a bank discounts 2,000 bills a year at such rates as these :—For two months-X6, la. 3d.; for three months-L5, 2s. 3d.; R10, 3s. 3d.; X7, 2s. 6d.; £14, 43. 6d. E3, Is. 6d.; X8, 2s. 9d.; J640, lls. 6d.; and for four months-25, 3s. They had not had occasion to sue four times in twelve months. They had never sold a man up; the charges for renewals were the same as for original loans, and they had had no losses with the farmers. You will see by that the amount of accommoda- tion given in the district in which those four banks are situated. How far did your investigations extend ?— To counties Mayo, Sligo, Roscommon, Galway, Leitrim, and Longford. There are 43 banks, and 11 agencies of banks which are open one or two days a week. You can, therefore, judge of the amount of business they do. There is no necessity to go to the gombeen man, as the borrowers can get the money for one-fourth of the amount he would charge. The 43 banks to which I refer are situated as follows: Sligo four, Manor Hamilton one, Ballymole one, Boyle two, Carrick-on-Shannon two, Longford three, Armagh one, Belturbet one, Granard two, Bally j amesduff one, Athlone three, Ballinasloe two, Galway three, Headford one, Tuam two, Roscommon two, Cong two, West- port two, Ballina four, Dunmore one, Castlebat two, and another. In the whole of this district there are only three loan fund offices-two at Sligo and one at Galway, and they can only operate within a few miles of their bead- quarters. The Jew money-lender has gone to Dublin, Belfast, and Cork, and advertises in the local papers. He has robbed numbers, and he it is who is now called the gombeen man. Most of the letters I received referred to those people. In other parts of Ireland there are over 100 loan fund offices, which have been scandalously mismanaged, as you will find on reference to the report of the committee appointed to inquire inte them. The trans- actions I have just dealt with are quite independent of commercial bills. The banks, as a matter of fact, really act as loan offices, charging very reasonable rates. Have you concluded your inquiry ?- Well. I may run over again to Ireland. I have received many letters about gombeenism, but they all related to transactions which took place 17 ot 18 years ago. There was nothing of recent date., You do not say positively that there is no gombeenism in those parts of Ireland you have not visited, or it would be difficult to reconcile the statement with the views of Mr. T. W- Russell, and of Father Finlay, who has made, the subject a special study, and dealt with it at length in the New Ireland Review ?—I do not wish to convey the impression that usury is alto- gether extinct in all agricultural parts of Ireland, and I can only speak as to those districts I have visited. Father Finlay and others may give evidence before our committee- I only give you the result of my inquiries* which, before next session, I may have to amplify. I am corresponding with many people in Ireland, and am determined to bottom the question; but there is a natural reluctance to any publicity, and I have care- fully avoided forming any opinion on hearsay statements. In every case I insist on seeing all letters and papers, and this renders my investi- gation very difficult.
THE PENRHYN QUARRIES: RESUMPTION ot W ORK.-After a strike extending over nearly^ year, bargain letting re-commenced on Wednes- day at Lord Penrhyn's Carnarvonshire slate quarries. There was no friction. Between si* and seven o'clock in the morning the long village street and the country lanes leading to the quarry resounded with the clang of the heavy boots of many hundreds of men and boys tramping to renew the work they had simol* taneously dropped twelve long months ago, and in a very short time the works were swarming with men and boys. It is found the working8 are in a fearful state,' and that a considerable time must elapse before anything like straight forward work, can be carried on as before. J