into the STATE OF THE POORER CLASSES IN IRELAND.
6G7 Appendix (A.)
" There are 84 ploughlands in the parish: six or seven persons leave many ploughlands, four or five leave many more, and from some two or three go away; say that four on an average so from each ploughland, multiplying by 84, it will give 336 persons who leave this parisli'to1)eg during some part of the summer; this is without counting children.
Several have five or six, several have three or four, very few without two; four is nearer to the average than three; but say three, and it will give over 1,000 children.
A woman sometimes takes her sifter's children with her; it is a relief to the sister, and rather an advantage to herself, because it excites the pity of strangers to see so many children."
It is very difficult to compute the number of strangers who come into this parish to beo-, hut they are believed to be more numerous than those who leave it.
Barry says, " They come here in crowds, because this is a great potato country; the small farmers along the coast pay their rent by potatoes as much as by anything else."
Murphy says, " If there is a scarcity here, they are lost in other places: all the beggars from Kerry and Bantry and Minterroarra come through here."
The number of beggars is much less than it was four or five years ago, and the reason is believed to be that provisions are cheaper and more plentiful.
Summer is the season in which beggars chiefly go about.
Murphy says, "They begin to 00 away from this parish from St.
Patrick's-day *, and keep going till May, according as potatoes grow scarce ; it is shame drives them from the place where they are known."
They are almost all women ; they take their children with them; the husband either stays at home, working with farmers, or goes off to look for work to the north of the country: among the strange beggars, able-bodied men are sometimes seen.
Brown says, " There was a good strong able-bodied man came to my cabin this morning; he said he wanted employment and could not get it; I gave him the little alms I could spare, two or three potatoes."
Sometimes one ofthe children is left at home with the husband to give some little assistÂ¬ ance.
Whenever there is a garden, the wife comes back as soon as it is time to dig it.
Sullivan says, "There is a neighbour of mine, one Coghlan, that has three children, and his wife goes off; she went off last May, and took two of the children with her.
She came home about the latter end of July; she brought nothing but the life with her.
He set a quarter and a half of potatoes last year; he paid at the rate of 2/.
an acre, that is 15 s.,
he had to manure it and work it, and do every hand's turn to it himself; he was digging and eating the potatoes when his wife came home, though they were not ripe, nor half ripe.
1 suppose they are nearly all out now; I would take employment if I could get it; the farmers cannot give it; they think it too much family they have themselves.
I have a very poor cabin; the thatch so bad, that when we have the rain outside we have it inside; we have not a drop of milk nor a way of getting it."
The witness adds, " There are many as badly off as he, and their wives do not beg; they stay at home to keep their credit, and spare the shame of it."
Triphook, protestant curate, says, " It is only dragging out a miserable existence to live as they do; they pay a dear price for a bit of mountain-ground that will only produce horse-potatoes, ' lumpers,' only fit for cattle; they are much better off when they are begging."
Of the men who leave this parish, some stay away, and it is believed that they get permanent employment elsewhere; the number of men who go away is less than it was formerly.
" Every one gets a bit of mountain, and tries to get potatoes out of it."
Sullivan says, " I met the wife and children of another neighbour of mine going away in July; she told me that she left him at home with as much potatoes as would do him for a week -^ he had a quarter and a half of coarse ground; he could not half nor third part manure it; he was using bog-stuff for manure after leaving it to dry two or three weeks; it answers very badly, but it is better than nothing; he is paying at the rate of 21, an acre for the ground; the wife came back in August and brought nothing with her."
There is great reluctance to have recourse to begging; the shame is so great, many when driven to distress go away privately, and succeed in concealing it from their neighbours.
Maiiony says, " A family that lived half a mile from you might go away without your knowing it; they are very shy about it, and strive to conceal it."
Some of the strangers are old and infirm ; people feel more compassion for such persons.
Sullivan says, " I saw an old man this morning, that is going about here this week back ,-he stops and gets his meals among the people in the town; as for children, I do not know how it is at home with him."
The Bandon weavers begged here in great numbers.
A few were observed during the last summer.
When a family of beggars applies for relief at a farmer's house, a greater quantity is of course given than to a single individual, but the wants of the latter being less, he may have a surplus after supporting himself, and be able to sell.
" There is a beggar who comes to me now and then with a handful of potatoes to sell; sometimes he has a ^e'ght, sometimes in summer a quarter of a weight; I do not know how long it takes him to collect that much; 'his potatoes are always of different sorts, but he sells them as dear as a termer, sometimes dearer."
asked wlly a niÂ§'ller Price would in any case be given to a beggar, the witness says, When potatoes are scarce, and poor people have but a little money at a time, they would
Munster, County Cork.
Examinations taken by Thomas Martin, Esq.
John Lalor, Esq.
West Carbery, (West Division.)
17 th March.