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A Journal of a Visit of Three Days to Skibbereen,

A JOURNAL

OF A

VISIT OF THREE DAYS

TO

SKIBBEREEN,

AND ITS NEIGHBOURHOOD.

BY ELIHU BURRITT.

LONDON: CHARLES GILPIN, 5, BISHOPGATE-STREET WITHOUT. BIRMINGHAM: JOHN WHITEHOUSE SHOWELL, 26, UPPER TEMPLE-STREET.

1847.

EXTRACT FROM THE SPEECH OF LORD JOHN RUSSELL,

_On The Irish Poor Relief Bill, March 12th, 1847._

"A gentleman who lately called upon me, and whom I have every reason to trust, gave me a letter from a person resident in that union (Skibbereen,) stating, that though the property within the union is rated to the poor as being of the value of L8,000 a-year only, its actual value is no less than L130,000 a-year, and that, until September last, no rate had been made exceeding sixpence in the pound, but that, in November, a rate was made of ninepence in the pound; but that rate has never been levied. (Loud cries of 'Hear, hear.')"--_See "The Times" of Saturday, March 13._

Elihu Burritt, well known on both sides of the Atlantic by his devoted labours for the good of mankind, especially in the promotion of peace and universal brotherhood, has recently paid a visit to some of the distressed parts of Ireland, principally with a view of sending a statement of facts, from his own observation, to his native country, together with an appeal on behalf of the sufferers under the awful pressure of famine and disease.

In this appeal, which was sent to the United States by the last steam packet, Elihu Burritt, speaking of the locality he had visited, says:--"I have come to this indescribable scene of destitution, desolation, and death, that I might get the nearer to your sympathies; that I might bring these terrible realities of human misery more vividly within your comprehension. I have witnessed scenes that no language of mine can portray. I have seen how much beings, made in the image of God, can suffer on this side the grave, and that too in a civilized land."

The reader will judge for himself, when he has perused the following record of only three days of this journey, whether the foregoing language is too strong. Although the fearful facts Elihu Burritt relates may have found a parallel in the statements of others, it is thought desirable to publish them in this country, as he recently witnessed them in the very district to which the sympathies of the English have been, for several months past, particularly directed, and for which locality large subscriptions have been specially contributed. A single individual is reported to have given L1000 for Skibbereen. Yet, notwithstanding all that has been subscribed, up to the period when this journal was written, no effectual means had been adopted for the decent interment of the dead, or even for their timely removal from the hovels of the living, and the great expenditure of the British Government, appears to have effected, at least in this district, but little mitigation of the fearful calamity.


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