Captain Rock to Vere Foster, Belfast.
[*Is response to this article*] ASSISTED EMIGRATION From the beginning of the world Emigration has been the normal mode of relief for an overcrowded poulation. If Adam and Eve's descendants had not swarmed from the little corner of the world which they first occupied into other unoccupied lands, they would have died of starvation in their original abode, and Ireland to this day would be an undiscovered and uninhabited island. Ireland, itself, is now overcrowded while there are still hundreds of millions of unoccupied fertile land in America, and other parts of the world, to which many millions of Irish men and women have already proceeded with great advantage to themselves. No doubt much could be, and should be, done by Government and otherwise to render the condition of the people more comfortable in this their native country and congenial climate,not by inciting to, or legalizing, robbery and ruin of present owners, but by simplifying and cheapening the transfer of land;by abolishing the laws of entail and primogeniture; by altering the laws of inheritance so that fee simple proprietors of land must eventually be multiplied forty-fold; and by giving remunerative employment in reclamation of waste lands, in drainage, in more profitable cultivation, in mining and manufacturing industries, etcetera, but while the grass grows the steed may starve, and while awaiting the enactment and operation of such measures as above referred to, which would tend to a peaceful development of all the resources of the country, and to greater diffusion of comfort, happiness, and contentment, great numbers of people in all parts of Ireland, but especially in the West, will continue in their present misery unless some immediate drastic remedy shallbe resorted to. Even if those measures should soon be carried out, the population of Ireland is so extraordinarily prolific that it would very soon afterwards again overtake and outstrip the means of comfortable subsistence in this little country. One thing seems clear, that the present low wages, high rents, and poverty of the agricultural population of the West of Ireland, are chiefly caused by excessive competition for employment and excessive sub-division of, and competition for, land. If remunerative employment cannot be provided for the redundant population, resort should be had to emigration. The poor, who most need to emigrate, cannot find the means of doing so. Therefore, the Government and the gentry should help them , in concert with the Colonial Governments, and with organised charitable associations for their reception in America and elsewhere; but the greatest obstacle to such assistance is the opposition of the greater part of the Irish Press, its sickly sentimental lamentations over the exodus of the population, and its childish denunciation of all who advocate assisted emigration as a means of bettering the condition of the people. I hope the Press will soon be converted to wise and more patriotic counsels. Meanwhile, in the case of girls over 18 years of age and under 30, in Connaught and the counties of Donegal and Clare, well recommended by their clergy, and who are not already provided with pre-paid passage tickets, and are not able to fully pay their passages or to proceed to America, without my assistance, I will until further notice, help such girls with Ã…Â“2 each, in the hope that on numerous instances the remainder of the necessary cost will be subscribed or otherwise obtained. Particulars of name, age, townland and parish, should be furnished to me, and I will then issue vouchers as hitherto value Ã…Â“2 each, in reduction of the cost of passage tickets of the persons approved by me. These vouchers should be presented to the Steamship Company at the port of embarkation, before embarkation of the persons named in the vouchers, as they will be of no use afterwards. VERE FOSTER. Belfast, September 1880. Notice - I will not sanction, and I will not pay, any advances of money made on my account in anticipation of my approval, or my grants; nor will I pay any money whatever except to the Steamship Companies in Liverpool or Glasgow, nor will I sanction any payment of cash by those Companies to passengers or local agents or other persons in exchange for my vouchers. [ Captain Rock to Vere Foster ] Foster you damn old flunkey, you of your nonsense again in Connaught, if so a messenger will be despatched to your house in Belfast and your passage paid to where Irish are a long time going [---?] to Hell. [Those?] [-?] [f---?] miscreant that would send the fair daughters of Eire to be victims of stray dogs like you.Close