« ForrigeFortsett »
MR. CALLAN had no wish to detain some anxiety for an explanation of what the House for more than a few minutes, fair rent was supposed to mean ; but the and he should not interpose at all if it matter remained still as it did on the were not for the fact that in justifica- first day of the introduction of the Bill, tion both of himself and his consti- a kind of geometrical puzzle. Since the tuents he felt bound not to give a silent introduction of the Bill on the 7th of vote. He happened to belong to a sec- April, he had twice visited Ireland, and tion of the House, of whom there were he had spent a considerable time in now only two survivors, who, on an occa- travelling through the agricultural dission similar to the present, when districts of Louth, Armagh, and Monaghan, cussing a Land Bill for Ireland, felt in order to ascertain the opinions of the bound to vote against it. He did not farmers in regard to the provisions on the present occasion propose to follow of the Bill, and especially in refera precedent which many of his Friends ence to the jurisdiction it was proopposite deemed to be an unwise one. posed to confer upon the County Court But, while he did not intend to oppose Judges. He had hoped that some prothe second reading of the Bill, he re- mise would be made by the Government gretted the absence from it of what he that in Committee the clause relating to conceived to be a cardinal principle the County Court Judges would be elimnamely, fixity of tenure. During the inated from the Bill. But what did Recess he had endeavoured to study the the right hon. Gentleman the Prime Miviews, not of the enemies of the Bill, nister say on Monday? He said it would but of such of its friends as the hon. not only be unwise but impossible to and learned Member for Dundalk (Mr. pass over a body of gentlemen who had C. Russell). Speaking of free sale, the had an opportunity under the Land hon. and learned Gentleman said that Act of collecting a mass of experience in his judgment, if the restrictions now such as was not possessed by any other proposed were allowed to remain in the body of gentlemen in Ireland. He Bill
, the expression “free sale” would would give the House the opinion of be a perfect misnomer. Had anything an hon. and learned Member who was occurred in the course of the debate to not a violent Land Leaguer, but was a hold out a hope that in Committee the supporter of the Government, and who Bill, in this respect
, would be improved?) sat immediately, beside them the The same hon. and learned Gentleman, same hon. and learned Gentleman to speaking of the resumption by the land whom he had already alluded (Mr. O. lord, stated clearly and emphatically Russell). What did that hon. and that the power of resumption by the learned Gentleman say of these County landlord was a one-sided arrangement, Court Judges, whom they were told by which
gave powers to the landlord | the Prime Minister it was impossible to that might be used with injurious pass over? The hon.and learned Member effect towards the tenant. He would said he had never read a Bill which, in ask whether any promise had been its practical operation, would more thomade by the Government that that roughly and entirely depend upon the complaint would be remedied? Then, machinery by which it was to be carried again, the same hon. and learned out. He believed the Bill might be Gentleman, in speaking of the question made a boon to the Irish tenants if of "fair rent," gave expression to the it were wisely, sympathetically, and feeling which evidently pervaded the honestly carried out; but it was also a majority of Members of that House-- Bill capable of being made restrictive namely, that the provisions of the mea- and oppressive, if worked by people sure in regard to fair rent were most who chose to take an unsympathetic ambiguous. Although he (Mr. Callan) view of it. The hon, and learned Membelieved he understood what the object ber then went on to say that the County of the clause was, yet he confessed that Court Judges did not possess the confihe was by no means certain that he dence of the Irish people. He did not knew what was really meant by “fair belong to the tenant class; he did not rent." It was the most vital point in move amongst them; he had no symthe whole of the Bill, and it ought to be pathy with them, and those he moved expressed in language that "he who amongst were those who felt no symruns may read." He had waited with pathy with them. He (Mr. Callan) had
had some experience of county chair- | he would show to any hon. Member. men, and of three in particular, in his She held a lease from an English noble. own county. He might say of two man. To his (Mr. Callan's) knowledge, of them, who were Conservatives, that the late tenant had built upon the prowhile they were ready to express every perty a house and offices, and within sympathy for the Irish tenants in their the last 25 years had spent something acts, they had never been known to like £1,600 upon it. He laid it al show such sympathy. Yet, by this Bill, down in grass, and since the passing of they would be placed in a position to the Act of 1870 his lease had expired. judge what was a fair and an unfair And what did this English nobleman, or rent. Happening to be upon some pro- rather his trustees, do? He forced upon perty in the county of Louth on Satur- this Irish tenant a lease by which be day, he had examined the Poor Law covenanted to relinquish all rights under valuation, and he found there was the Land Act of 1870. He held in his one tenant whose farm was valued at hands all the correspondence, and among £31 10s., but who paid to a county it was a letter dated in 1879. It was a chairman a rent of £63 78. 4d.—more letter to the tenant saying—" Please get than 100 per cent above the Poor Law the enclosed lease signed and returned valuation. In the case of another ten- forthwith.” And three days afterwards, ant, whose property was valued at $14 the tenant, not having complied with a-year, the rental was more than 100 this mandate, received another couched per cent above the Poor Law valua- as follows:tion. These tenants were voters; and,
“I understand that you declined to sign the therefore, he had called upon them in yearly agreement forwarded to you as my téh. order to see where the shoe pinched in ant. I therefore require you to give up puser's regard to the present Bill, and they sion forthwith, as the covenants contained is said—“What justice could we expect your lease expired last May: I intend to seti from a county chairman if he happens purpose of taking it over, and I hope you wil.
the bailiff to your house on Monday to to be similarly circumstanced to ours ? give up possession without delay. Of course, if Our landlord is the county chairman of you forward the lease signed without delar. I another county, and he exacts from us have instructed the bailiff not to take furib,
notice." an exorbitant rent-100 per cent over Griffith's valuation." He (Mr. Callan) Thus, with his blunderbuss presented at might enter further into this matter, but his head, the tenant, who alone had he had no wish to make charges, indis- made the farm a valuable one, was criminately, against the county chairmen. compelled to submit to the landlord's The gentleman to whom he referred was terms. He was told—“If you do not a Catholic, and a Liberal, connected with sign that document, relinquishing your the county of Louth, and he put himself rights and debarring yourself from all forward as a tenant-righter. He wished benefit under the Land Act of 1870, his hon. Friends the Members for Sligo I will turn you out.” Reference had joy of the county chairman they had been made in the course of the debate got; but he certainly hoped that the to the late Mr. Butt, particularly by the poor impoverished tenants of that noble Marquess who had just addressed county would have some other Judge, the House (the Marquess of Hartington, under the provisions of the present Bill
, whose kindly and sympathetic speech than a county chairman who exacted made him (Mr. Callan) regret exceedfrom his tenants a rent that was more ingly that the noble Marquess, instead than 100 per cent more than Griffith's of being appointed to preside over the valuation. Then, again, in regard to affairs of India, had not been placed at leases, it was absolutely necessary that the head of the Irish Executive. Mr. something should be done beyond what Butt, speaking of the Land Bill of 1870, was proposed by the Bill of the Govern- and summing up its merits and demerits, ment. Even the Prime Minister himself used these almost prophetic words, admitted that the subject was one that “ Such a measure, if successful in some rewas worthy of consideration. In the spects, will leave in our system such elements course of his progress last Saturday he of disaster us will yet shake Irish society to its (Mr. Callan) called upon an aged lady,
base." and he had received from her in confidence Mr. George Power Bryan, in moving the certain documents which, in confidence, rejection of the Bill of 1870, said the
Bill, as it stood, did not fulfil the as- | Friend the Member for the County of pirations of the Irish people. The same Cork, and asked him upon what grounds thing might be said of the present Bill. he had recommended the Bill to the Did it fulfil the aspirations of the Irish Irish people? Would it not have been people ?
more fitting in the hon. Member to have " You may pass it into law,” said Mr. Bryan; first asked that question of the large • but do not deceive yourselves. It will entirely minority of his own supporters who had fail to satisfy the country.”
wished to support the Bill, and had The same warning was applicable to the tion? Whatever might be said in that
voted against his proposition for abstenpresent measure. Would the right hon. House, he believed that the vast maGentleman the Chief Secretary for Ireland venture to tell the House that the jority of moderate men- from ArchBill now before it would satisfy the with Amendments, in favour of the Bill;
bishops down to tenant farmers--were, country and quiet the disaffection which and he would say that hon. Gentlemen now existed ? Mr. Bryan added
opposite did not perform their duty and "It is because I am of opinion that if the Bill their promise to their constituents by should pass in its present shape, litigation and refusing to support a Bill embodying between the two classes of the community the principles upon which they were which, beyond all others, ought to live in con- elected, and thereby weakening its cord and unity; and, also, because I feel that chance of becoming law. They had the just demands of the Irish people must be heard that evening that under the Act met, that I oppose the Bill.”—[3 Hansard, cxcix. of 1870 the average amount of money 1376-7.]
obtained as compensation by the tenants He (Mr. Callan) and a small minority in Ireland was only £27 each; and the of Irish Members supported Mr. Bryan hon. Member for the City of Cork had on that occasion; and on the present omitted to state that the Act was passed, occasion he believed that three times the not for the purpose of levying damages, number of Irish Members would take a but for the purpose of preventing evicsimilar course. At the risk of inter- tion, He had, however, totally ignored ruption and of wearying the patience of the thousands of cases of eviction that the House, he had considered it neces- were prevented by the Act of 1870. He sary to make these remarks rather than (Sir Patrick O'Brien) heard a rumour give a silent vote. He had never, since that over 30 Tenant Right Representahe had the honour of a seat in the House, tives were about to abstain from voting shirked a vote or given a vote which he on that night. If it were so, he would thought he ought not to have given. At be indeed surprised. For the abstenany rate, he had had the courage of his tion of some he did not find it difficult convictions, and he could not at the pre- to suggest a reason. They had to desent moment endorse the Bill as accepted cide between the interests of the Irish by the Irish people.
tenant farmers and the commands of The SIR PATRICK O'BRIEN said, in the Irish World, who would stop the supplies year 1870 he voted against the Bill in- if the Bill were supported ; and he suptroduced by the right hon. Gentleman posed, in face of such an eventuality, (Mr. Gladstone) because, useful as it thoy would abstain from voting. But was, it did not embrace the principles there was in Ireland the Land League to support which he was elected to that organization ; and though there were House. Now, in 1881, he was there many villages and country towns which to say he would support the Bill then derived no benefit from the money reunder consideration; and why? Be- ceived from America, the local leaders of cause it did recognize the principles the movement had become petty kingsand known by the soubriquet of the “three dictators, and created a sense of importF's," to support which not only himself ance which caused men in their neighand those who acted with him were bourhood to fear them in the exalted poelected, but also the large majority of the sition which they occupied. The occupaGentlemen opposite who now recognized tion of these gentlemen would be gone if the lead of the hon. Gentleman the they had no money to keep up this orMember for the City of Cork. That ganization, and they would resume their hon. Member, in the speech which they old appellations of Paddy, Jim, or Mike, had so lately heard, addressed his hon. and be relegated to their former unim
[Eighth Night. ]
portant and humble positions. Again, | Bill would fail to stop agitation in Irehe had heard the organization defended land, because it was the interest of some upon public platforms on the ground hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway that that it was to wipe out the old confis- it should continue, and the sore remain cations in Ireland-Williamite, Crom- unhealed. wellian, and Elizabethian--if any such MR. HEALY observed, that it was latter now existed. To assert this was gratifying that, at any rate, one Contoo amusing; the more especially when servative Member had risen to protest they recollected that only the other day, against a system which, on the occasion in the North of Ireland, when address- of great debates, allowed the Whips to ing an Orange meeting, the hon. Mem- arrange amongst themselves when the ber for the City of Cork boasted that division was to take place, and allowed he was the descendant of one who had a number of Gentlemen who came down crossed the Boyne with that William III., to the House on those occasions to shout whom he (Sir Patrick O'Brien) supposed down those who got up to speak at a the hon. Member for Cork City would late hour. For his own part, he though: call the “Great Deliverer." As re- the course which hon. Members below garded the labourers, he found that at the Gangway ought to pursue who felt public meetings their claims were alluded themselves aggrieved by the conduct of to at the tail of the proceedings with hon. Members opposite in this respect, a bald resolution, like the toast of the would be to move the adjournment of “Press” at a public dinner; but no the debate. He pointed out that when proposition was made in their favour, hon. Members who sat on that side of nor any plan suggested by which their the House rose to speak, no matter how cruel case should be dealt with. For great the question and important the himself, at that hour of the morning, he arguments they adduced, they were not could not go through the many pro- listened to. On the other hand, when posals of the Bill. In Committee, he hon. Gentlemen on the Treasury Bench had reason to hope, niany Amendments or on other Benches that were not in the would be carried out. Leaseholders, cold shade of Opposition rose to speak, for instance, should not be forgotten. it was supposed that their contributions But as a Bill embodying in the spirit to the discussion were so important that the great principle of the “ three F's," they ought to be listened to without the to which he had pledged hinself before slightest interruption. He expressed a his constituents, it should receive his hope that no hon. Gentleman below the hearty and cordial support.
Gangway would be a party to any arMR. STORER said, that, notwith- rangement of the kind he had referred standing the lateness of the hour, he to, but would at all times, when necescould not sit quietly without saying one sary, exercise his right of speaking. word of explanation in answer to the
Question put. speech of the noble Lord opposite, who had so wrongfully accused the Conser- The House divided :-Ayes 352; Noes vative Party with regard to the course
176: Majority 176. they had taken in opposing the Bill. He wished to say that the Bill was op
AYES. posed by those who sat near him en- Acland, Sir T. D. Barclay, J. W. tirely upon principle. They considered Agar-Robartes,hn.T.C. Baring, Tiscount that the principles contained in it were Agnew, W.
Barnes, A. not in accordance with political economy Allen, H. G.
Bass, H. or the rights of property, and that the Allen, W. S.
Baxter, rt. hon. W. E. Bill would entirely fail in obtaining the Allman, R. L. Bellingham, A. H. object intended. Further, he desired to Ainory, Sir J. H. Beresford, G. de la P. reply to the allegations made against Archdale, W. H.
Blake, J. A. the Conservative Party that they were
Blennerhassett, Sir R. responsible, in some degreo, for the Armitstead, G. Blennerhassett, R. P. agitation in Ireland, by saying that Arnold, A.
Bolton, J. ('. those allegations were totally unfounded, Ashley, hon. E. M. Borlase, W.C.
Brand, II. R. as was proved by the admission of the Baldwin, E.
Baltour, Sir G.
Brassey, H. A. Prime Minister himself in his Mid
Brett, R. B.
Briggs, W. E.
Inderwick, F. A. O'Brien, Sir P.
O'Conor, D. M. Bright, rt. hon. J. Edwards, P.
James, Sir H.
O'Shea, W. H.
Paget, T. T.
Palmer, C. M.
Farquharson, Dr. R. Kingscote, Col. R. N. F. Palmer, J. H.
Parker, C. S.
Peddie, J. D.
Ffolkes, Sir W. H. B. Lambton, hon, F. W. Peel, A. W.
Law, rt. hon. H. Pender, J.
Lawrence, Sir J. C. Pennington, F. Campbell, Sir G. Fitzmaurice, Lord E. Lawrence, W.
Philips, R. N. Campbell, R. F. F. Fitzwilliam, hn. H. W. Lawson, Sir W. Playfair, rt. hon. L. Campbell - Bannerman, Fitzwilliam, hn. W. J. Laycock, R.
Portman, hn. W. H. B.
Potter, T. B.
Powell, W. R. H.
Power, J. O'C.
Pugh, L. P.
Lefevre, right hon. G. Ralli, P.
Ramsden, Sir J.
Leigh, hon. G. H. C. Rathbone, W.
Leighton, Sir B. Reed, Sir E. J.
Reid, R. T. Chambers, Sir T. Givan, J.
Litton, E. F.
Rendel, S. Cheetham, J. F. Gladstone, rt.hn. W.E. Lloyd, M.
Richardson, J. N.
Lymington, Viscount Richardson, T.
Macartner, J. W. E. Robertson, H.
Rogers, J. E. T.
Roundell, C. S.
Macnaghten, E. Russell, G. W. E.
St. Aubyn, Sir J.
MI Clure, Sir T. Samuelson, B.
M'Intyre, Æneas J. Seely, C. (Lincoln) Courtney, L. H. Guest, J. J.
Seely, C. (Nottingham)
Sheridan, H. B.
W. G. V. V.
Simon, Serjeant J.
Hartington, Marq. of Marjoribanks, Sir D.C. Smith, E.
Spencer, hon. C. R. Canliffe, Sir R. A. Henderson, F.
Stanley, hon. E. L. Currie, D. Heneage, E. Martin, R. B.
Stansfeld, rt, hon. J. Dl.ly, J. Henry, M. Mason, H.
Herschell, Sir F. Masscy, 1t. hon. W. N. Stevenson, J. C.
Maxwell-Heron, J. Stewart, J.
Story-Maskelyne,M.H. De Ferricres, Baron Holland, S.
Monk, C. J.
Stuart, H. V.
Synan, E. J.
Talbot, C. R. M.
Tavistock, Marquess of Dodds, J. Howard, E. S.
Taylor, P. A.
Mundella, rt. hon. A.J. Thomasson, J. P.
Thompson, T. C. Hutchinson, J. D. Noel, E.
Thomson, H. Dundas, hon. J. C. Illingworth, A. O‘Beirne, Major F. Tillett, J. H. VOL. CCLXI. (THIRD SERIES.]