Page images
PDF
EPUB

Pare and fresh air, without which life cannot exist. Is administered in abundance to this manufactory, by frequently opening the windows, and by air-holes, under every other window, which are left open during the •ummer months. The children are all washed before they go to work,and after they have finished their daily labour, previous to their appearance in the schools. The floors and the machinery of the mills are washed once a week with hot water; and the walls and ceilings, twice a year, are white-washed with unslaked lime. The children are lodged in large airy rooms. The boys and girls arekept separate from each otherduring rest,mealtimes, and working hours. Hence, one most material source of the corruption and the profligacy which prevail In almost all other large manufactories, is here prevented from existing.

They arc fed plentifully with plain and wholesome food, which consists chiefly of fresh beef and barleybroth, cheese, potatoes, and barley-bread, with now and then some fresh-herrings as a variety. Their breakfast and supper are, principally oatmeal-porridge, with milk in the summer, and in winter, a sauce made of beer and melasses. At seven o'clock the children sup, after this there is no night-work; a pernicious and infamous practice in use at most other manufactories, for the purpose, as it should seem, of promoting immorality and debauchery amongst the poor, ignorant, unfortunate manufacturers. After supper the schools open, and continue so till nine o'clock. The lesser children, that are not yet old enough to work, are instructed in the day-time; the elder children learn in the evening, when the daily labour is concluded. Proper masters and mistresses are employed to teach both the boye and girls; the boys learn to read and write, and cast accounts; the girls, in addition to these inestimable acquisitions, are taught to work at the needle. Some of the children are taught church-music, and on Sunday they all, under the immediate guidance of the masters, attend a place of divine worship, and the rest of the day is occupied, chiefly, in receiving moral and religious instructions from these masters.

Some few years since, a vessel, carrying emigrants from the Highlands to America, was driven by foul weather into Greenock, and, in consequence, more than two hundred poor creatures were put on shore in a most helpless and wretched state. Mr. Dale, as soon as he knew it, offered them all employment, and most of them entered immediately into his service. He also, soon after, invited other people from the Highlands, and undertook to provide habitations for two hundred families. The invitation was joyfully accepted, and numbers of Highlanders came, and have taken up their abode in the territory of their benevolent employer. Many families also, that were lately driven from Ireland by want and by famine, have found protection, support, and employment for them, and for their little ones, from this indefatigable philanthropift. Such is the praise, the rare, the enviable praise of Dale; of one who has done more for his country and for the benefit of mankind, than all the warriors and all the conquerors that have ever lived, than all those whose names now stain the page of history with characters of desolation and of blood: but the name of Dale shall be remembered, and shall shine forth witk honour in that great day, when the book of life shall be opened, and it shall be pronounced unto every man according to his deeds; in that awful and tremendous day, when men shall not be judged as kings, and as princes, and as lords, and as destroyers of cities, and as murderers of their fellow creatures, but all shall be judged as offending sinners. In that day will those, who have been deemed great upon the earth, in that they possessed and employed the power of oppressing and of afflifting human nature, hide their heads in confusion and dismay; while all those, who, like the benevolent Dale, have blessed their fellow-beings, even as the dews of heaven have blessed them, shall receive their reward, and sit as glorified saints on the right hand of Him who descended from the throne of God to save and to redeem fallen and lost mortality.

JOURNAL OF AN EXCURSION TO THE GIANT MOUNTAINS IN SILESIA.

«' Behold the mountains, less'ning as they rise,

Lose the low vales, and steal into the skies." Pops.

*Hirschlierg, August, 1800.

.... We had been obliged to take one of the common post-chaises of the country to go to Schreibersltau^, the

» A handsome town of Silesia, with a number of noble edifices, which is situated in a valley, and surrounded by hills, more or less elevated on every side, with the sublime gloom of the Giant Mountains at the back-ground of the scene.

+ A Silesian village, containing about 350 houses and 1600 inhabitants; but they are scattered over an extent of se. roads being such that our carriage was not suitable for them; even the post-chaise could not answer the purpose of our travels beyond that place, and, for the remainder of our excursion to the Giant Mountains, we could use no other carriage than a common open peasant's cart, without springs or seats; instead of which, however, we had a couple of boards fixed across the cart, and covered with straw, which, upon the whole, was really, or at least was thought, better than sitting on the bottom of the cart itself.

Thus equipped, we left Schreibershau between five and six in the morning of the 31st of July, and rode until noon over some of the worst roads which it has ever been my lot to pass, to see the glass-houses on the borders of Bohemia. There are two, one on the Silesian, the other on the Bohemian side of the boundaries, and about two English miles distant from each other; we saw them both. The mere glass-house is much the same on both sides, excepting that the Bohemian is larger, and makes a greater variety of articles. The principal things we saw made were vials, bottles, tumblers, wine-glasses, coffee-pots, and a sort of glasswire used upon lustres. I believe the proprietors of these works are not fond of having strangers come to inspect them*.

vcr.il miles square, and the houses are all strewed about Id spots at a hundred rods or more from each other.

* The principal reason for this aversion is, that the workman, when looked at, fails often in the article which he is making; •whetherT>ecause his attention is involuntarily drawn away from his work to the spectators, or because the consciousness of being looked at, excites in him the ambition of appearing

[ocr errors]

.... The Bohemian work is much superior in quality., and about fifty per cent, cheaper than that of their neighbours. They have likewise in the same village, and belonging to the same manufactory, glass-cutter*, grinders, and gilders; so that the whole process is complete on the spot. At the Silesian works they barely blow the glass. Much of the Bohemian glass is handsome, and if they would, as they easily might, consult the English work, in the same article, to improve the elegance of their forms, it would be difficult to distinguish between them: as it is, the immense difference between the prices of Bohemian and Englifh glass, even making every allowance for the necessary difference in the price of transportation, convinces me that an advantageous trade in this article might be carried on between the United Stales of America and Bohemia.

After spending about four hours in looking over all these works, we returned to Schreibershau by the same road we had travelled in the morning, and reached that place at about ten at night. I suppose the distance not more than ten English miles; but the road is so mountainous and rocky, that the cart could scarcely, for a quarter of a mile on the way, proceed on a quicker pace than a walk. The hills were partly covered with, and have been partly stripped of their woods, chiefly birch and pine, used as well at the glass-works as at the manufactories of vitriol: much of the wood is heaped in

to do the work with perfect ease, and thus occasions failure
from carelessness, or, by a contrary effect, raises that unusual
anxiety to do well, which defeats its own purpose.
P

« PreviousContinue »