The million-peopled city

Garwood, John


Dickens's Narrative of Emigrants from this School.


thus narrates two interesting cases of emi- grants from this school:-

"It is encouraging to know that the most favourable accounts have been received from emigrants who left the Pear-street School. It is now some time since a lad, who, although only 14, was taken into the latter, was sent to


. He had been badly brought up; his mother, during his boyhood, having frequently sent him out, either to beg or to steal. About a year after her son's departure, she called, in a state of deep distress, upon the missionary of the district, and informed him that her scanty furniture was about to be seized for rent, asking him at the same time for advice. He told her that he had none to give her, but to go and pay the rent, at the same time handing her a sovereign. She received it hesitatingly, doubting, for a moment, the evidence of her senses. She went and paid the rent, which was l8s., and afterwards returned with the change, which she tendered to the missionary with her heartfelt thanks. He told her to keep the balance, as the sovereign was her own-informing her, at the same time, that it had been sent her by her son, and had that very morning so opportunely come to hand, together with a letter, which he afterwards read to her. The poor woman for a moment or two looked stupefied and incredulous, after which she sank upon a chair, and wept long and bitterly. The contrast between her son's behaviour and her own conduct towards him, filled her with shame and remorse. She is now preparing to follow him to .

"Another case was that of a young man, over 20 years of age, who had likewise been admitted, under special circum- stances, to the same Institution. He had been abandoned by his parents in his early youth, and had taken to the streets to avert the miseries of destitution. He soon became expert in the art of picking pockets, on one occasion depriv- ing a person in of no less than 1501. in bank notes. With this, the largest booty he had ever made, he repaired to a house in the neighbourhood, where stolen property was received. Into the room into which he was shown, a gloved hand was projected, through an aperture in the wall, from an adjoining room, into which he placed the notes. The


hand was then withdrawn, and immediately afterwards pro- jected again with 20 sovereigns, which was the amount he received for the notes. He immediately repaired to West- minster, and invested 101. of this sum in counterfeit money, at a house not a stone's-throw from the Institution.

"For the 101. he received, in bad money, what represented 501. With this he sallied forth into the country with the design of passing it off-a process known amongst the craft as ' shuffle-pitching.' The first place he went to was , and the means he generally adopted for passing off the base coin was this:-Having first buried in the neigh- bourhood of the town all the good end bad money in his possession, with the exception of a sovereign of each, so that, if detected in passing a bad one, no more bad money would be found upon his person, he would enter a retail shop, say a draper's, at a late hour of the evening, and say that his master had sent him for some article of small value, such as a handkerchief. On its being shown him, he would demand the price of it, and make up his mind to take it; whereupon he would lay down a good sovereign, which the shopman would take up, but, as he was about to give him change, a doubt would suddenly arise in his mind as to whether his master would give the price asked for the article. He would then demand the sovereign back, with a view to going and consulting his master, promising, at the same time, to be back again in a few minutes. Back again he would come, and say that his master was willing to give the price, or that he wished the article at a lower figure. He took care, how- ever, that a bargain was concluded between him and the shopkeeper; whereupon he would again lay down the sove- reign, which, however, on this occasion, was the bad and not the good one. The unsuspecting shopkeeper would give him the change, and he would leave with the property and the good money. Such is the process of 'shuffle-pitching.'


In the majority of instances he succeeded, but was sometimes detected. In this way he took the circuit twice of Great Britain and ; stealing as he went along, and passing off the bad money, which he received, for good. There are few gaols in the United Kingdom of which he has not been a denizen. His 2 circuits took him 9 years to perform, his progress being frequently arrested by the interposition of justice. It was at the end of his second journey that he applied for admission to the . He had been too often in gaol not to be able to read; but he could neither write nor cipher when he was taken in. He soon learnt, however, to do both; and, after about 7 months' probation, emigrated to from his own choice. The missionary of the district accompanied him on board as he was about to sail. The poor lad wept like a child when he took leave of his benefactor, assuring him that he never knew the comforts of a home until he entered the . Several letters have been received from him since his landing, and he is now busily employed, and-doing well!

" Instances of this kind might be multiplied, if necessary, of what is thus being done daily and unostentatiously for the reclamation of the penitent offender, not only after conviction, but also before he undergoes the terrible ordeal of correction and a gaol."

The youth last referred to has been for the last 5 years foreman in a saw-mill. The missionary has sent out to him several young men, all of whom he has provided with employment, and has looked after not only their temporal but also their spiritual welfare. He is a communicant at a Baptist chapel. In a letter received from him lately, he states that he has married a young woman, who is also a communicant at the same chapel; and they are, to use his own expression, as happy "as poor sinners can be out of


heaven." And yet this youth was brought up in a training- school for young thieves, kept by a most notorious fellow, who was proprietor of a lodging-house in, and who was tried some years since at the for murder. In a quarrel with his wife, as she was called, he took their child to an upstairs room, with a knife cut off the child's head, laid the head on a table, came down and told his wife, if she would go up, she would find something belonging to her lying on the table. She went up, and found the child's head.

A second pupil of this wretched man's is now undergoing the missionary's reformatory training. In the magazine of the , for . it was added:-

"Perhaps the most striking testimony to the value of this Institution was borne a few days since, by 3 thieves, to the missionary who was honoured in the establishment of the school. One thief said to him, ' Why, Sir, you take all our boys away.' The second said, 'A very good thing too. And the third added, that the school was the greatest blessing in the neighbourhood for the children, and that, if he had any children, he would send them there too."

The present number of children in these schools is large.

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 Title Page
Chapter I: Criminal and Destitute London Juveniles, or the Ragged School Class
Criminal and Destitute London Juveniles, or the Ragged School Class
A distinct Class from Adult Thieves
Their extreme Youth, and sometimes Childhood
Great Severity of British, as compared with French, Law on Juvenile Offenders
Their especial Claim, when resident in London
Their supposed Numbers
The Classes from which they are drawn
The Training for Crime which they receive
Their Gradations in Proficiency
Importance of Missionary Operations among this Class
The Ragged School Movement
The Connexion of the Ragged schools with the Operations of the London City Mission
Ragged Schools in an especial manner free from the Difficulties of Difference of Creed and Interference with the Duties of Parents
Early Approaches to the Ragged School System
The first Ragged School in Lonon, as established in 'the Old Stable' at Westminster
The Report of this School, as printed by Order of the House of Commons
Mr. Charles Dicken's Account of the Plot of Ground on which this School stood, called 'The Devil's Acre'
Letter of the Children of this School to the City Missionary
New Pye-street Girls' School, April 10, 1843
Dickens's narrative of Emigrants from this School
The Field-lane ragged School described, as a second Illustration of these Institutions
Description of the adjacent notorious 'Thieves' Houses'
Formation of the School
Dickens's Narrative of different Visits to this School, and of the Improvements effected in the interim
Narrative of a Visit to this School, from 'Chambers's Edinburgh Journal'
This School first interested Lord Shaftesbury in the 'Movement'
Erection of a New Schoolroom with a large Dormitory
Review of the subsequent Progress of London Ragged Schools to the present Time
Industrial Schools
Sergeant Adams's Eulogy of the Efforts of Ragged School Teachers
Three Cases of Usefulness from the Ragged School Union Magazine
Case of Usefulness reported to the Author by a Clergyman
Two other Cases of Usefulness from the 'London City Mission Magazine'
The Shoe-blacks a most remarkable Illustration of the Success of the Efforts made to benefit this Class
Broomers, and how they might be made to cleanse London
Steppers and Ragged Nursery
Comparison of the Expenses of Schools and Prisons
The especial Claims of Girls
Voluntary Effort, and that by the Masses, rather than Government Aid, to be especially rested on
Appointment of a Missionary by the London City Mission
Importance of Increased Exertions, in order to bring the whole of this Class under Ragged School Instrution
Concluding Remarks
Chapter II: Greenwich and Chelsea Pensioners
Greenwich and Chelsea Pensioners
Greenwich and Chelsea Hospitals fit Adornments to the two Shores of England's Metropolis
Greenwich Hospital
The Pensioners
Their Ages
Their Present Number
The Yearly Deaths
The Infirmary for the Sick and Dying
Religious and moral Character of the Pensioners, and Providsion made for their Instruction
The Pensioners not allowed to marry, and the bad Effects of this Rule
The Royal Hospital Schools
Law Agency in a peculiar manner important with these Men
The London City Mission, the only Agency of this Character in the Hospital
Need of a Second Paid Lay Visitor
Description of the Meeting of Pensioners held daily by the Missionary
Striking Cases of Usefulness among the Pensioners by this Agency
In A.D. 1851
In A.D. 1852
In A.D. 1853
Case of Usefulness among Out-pensioners, from the Scripture Readers' Association 'Occasional paper'
Chelsea Hospital
Its Origin
Nell Gwynne's Grant of the Building
Number of In-pensioners admitted
Their Character
The Pensioners' Opinions of the late Duke of Wellington, and of Lying-in-State
The Crowds of the Public who assembled to see the Spectacle
Number of Out-pensioners in different Years, according to the Prevalence of Peace or War
The immense Cost of the Pensioners to the nation, even at the Present Day
The Hotel des Invalides in Paris, established before Chelsea Hospital in London, and a Standing Army established in France before its Establishment in Enbland
How the Disabled and Aged Soldier was previously supported in this Country
The College was not completed till the Revolution
The Interest of William the Third and Fourth in the College
The College is for Invalids also
Ages of the Pensioners
Number of Deaths annually
The Burial-ground of Chelsea Hospital, and its Remarkable Epitaphs
Burial Registers
The Funeral of a Pensioner described
Flags and Trophies recently removed from St. Paul's Cathedral to Chelsea Hospital
Specimens of Certificates of Service given to Pensioners on their Admission to the College by their Commanding Officers
The Clasps worn by Pensioners to denote the Number of Battles in which they have engaged
Guard kept at the College in Military Style
Foreigners and different Creeds among the Pensioners
The heavy Manner in which Time hangs on their Hands
Cards, &c. introduced by the Authorities of the College to remedy this
Library, and its Defects
Gardening introduced by Lord John Russell
These Gardens were the former famed Ranelagh
Great Abuses in the Management of Chelsea Hospital abolished by Lord John Russell
Regulations as to Marriage more favourable to Morals at Chelsea than at Greenwich
The Royal Military Asylum for Boys
The Wellington Fund now raising for the Children of Officers
Gratitude of the Pensioners for Religious Instruction, and their Visit to City Missionaries, when the latter had been ill
Their Interest in Religious Tracts
Their Desire of Further Instruction
Number of Out-pensioners resident in the Metropolis
Facilities for, and Importance of, Benefitting these Men
Extracts from the Reports of a Missionary of the London City Mission
The especial Claims which Pensioners present on the Christian Benevolence of the Nation, and not of the Inhabitants of London only
Thankfulness for Peace
Immense Cost of War as compared with the Insignificant Amount which would now add greatly to their Comfort, and promote their Best Interests
Danger of Delay with Men so Aged
Chapter III: The London Cab-Driver
The London Cab-Driver
The Introduction of Coaches into London in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth
The riding Horses in previous Use
Coaches when introduced only by the very Highest Class of Society, and regarded as an effeminacy
On other Classes beginning the use of Coaches, the higher Classes continued to add to the Number of the Horses by which their Coaches were drawn, in order to retain a Superiority
The Introduction of Hackney Coaches kept at Inns, in the Reign of James I
Hackney Coach-stands in the Public Streets established
These Prohibited by the Proclamations of succeeding Kings, but in vain
The Two Centuries of Hackney-coach continuance
The Last Days of London Hackney-coaches
The Cabriolets of Paris
Their subsequent Introduction in London
The immense Increase in their Number during the Twenty Years of their Existence
Their present Number
The Cab-driver
The extensive Use of London Cabs on Sundays, and its injurious Effects on the Drivers
The Extortion complained of in Cabmen
The unlicensed Driver, and the extreme Depravity of this Class
Cab-drivers as a Body exposed to unjust Odium
Recent Alteration in the System of Licensing, and its Effects
Great Difference in the Character of London Cab-stands
The Waterman
First Efforts for the Religious Welfare of Cabmen as a Body, as made by the London City Mission
A Missionary appointed by that Society to visit them, and his Great Success
A Second Missionary appointed, but soon discontinued, through want of Funds for his Support
Cases recorded of his Usefulness
The Emigration of the First Missionary, and the Appointment of his Successor, with Review of his Efforts and Success
Cases of Usefulness recorded by the Cab Missionary of the London City Mission, last Year
Chapter IV: The London Omnibus Man
The London Omnibus Man
The Introduction of Omnibuses into London, and their previous Establishment in Paris
The Enterprise of Mr. Shillibeer, in starting Omnibuses in the English Metropolis, the Difficulties he encountered, and his subsequent Ruin
The Paris and London Omnibuses of the present day compared
The constant Litigation between the Proprietors of London Omnibuses after Mr. Shillibeer's Failure, and the consequent Establishment of large Omnibus Companies for the sake of Mutual Protection
The Immense Amount of the Capital and Annual Expenditure of the London Omnibus Trade
The vast Sums of Money spent by the London Population in Omnibus Riding
The Large Amount of Revenue which London Omnibuses produce to the Government
The very small Number of Omnibuses in the remainder of England, as compared with the Number in London
The almost incredible Length of Distance traversed periodically by the London Omnibuses
The constant Increase in the Number of London Omnibuses
The Metropolitan Omnibus Traffic greater in the Number of Passengers than the Metropolitan Railway Traffic
The Condition of the London Omnibus Men, and their present Numbers
Their Sunday Occupation in the Metropolis of a professedly Christian Country scarcely less than on Week-days, and sometimes greater, while an Extreme Amount of Toil is imposed on them during the Week
Lord Shaftesbury's Testimony of the Success of an Omnibus Proprietor who Discontinued Sunday Work
Testimonies as to the Toil of Omnibus-men from the Early Closed Association
From an Occasional paper of the Church Pastoral-Aid Society
From the Rev. J. T. Baylee's 'Statistics and Facts in reference to the Lord's-day'
Extract from 'Silverpen' as to the Wives and Families of Omnibus Servants
Medical Testimony as to the Injury of Labour so hard on the Constitution of the Men
Testimonies given to Mr. Mayhew as to the Severity of the Labour, by a Driver, a Conductor, and a Time-keeper
Their Wages
Their Temptations to Drink
Their Temptations to Embezzlement
Urgent Appeal as to the Heathenism of so Large a Body of Men
Reference to the Efforts of the London City Mission, in a Pamphlet entitled 'The Omnibus Men of London'
Recent Efforts of Omnibus Servants themselves to Improve their Condition
The Grand Junction Omnibus Comopany
The Introduction of Omnibuses has brought more together the different Parts of London
Concluding Appeal
Chapter V: The Irish of London
The Irish of London
Their Numbers
Their Country and their Race
St. Patrick
Subsequent Wars
Conquest of Ireland by Henry II, and its subsequent Oppression by the English
The Reformation in Ireland
The Protestant Colony of Ulster Established
The Battle of the Boyne, and its Consequences
The Union
Remarkable Increase of Population in Ireland during the close of the 18th and the commencement of the 19th Centuries
The pleasing Peculiarities in the irish Character
Their Hospitality
Their strong Natural Affection
The Native irish Poor more virtuous than the English Poor
Even the Good Qualities of the Irish cause them especially to need Faithful and Judicious Counsel and Visitation
Their Claim as Immigrants into, to them, a Strange Land
The Excellences of the Irish Character are beheld in London in their rudest form
How Popery has Marred and Debased the Irish Character
The Irish have been made thereby Idle
They have no Proper Feeling of Independence
Their Disloyalty
Their Spirit of Persecution and Hatred to Protestants
The Irish of London require 100 Missionaries or Scripture-readers, in order that the Gospel may be brought to their Abodes
The same Agency, for the effecting the same Results, is what is especially required for the Irish of London
Cardinal Wiseman's recent Denunciation of this Agency in London
Soundness of Protestant Feeling among the English working-classes
'The testimony of no single missionary is materially different'
The Persecution which the recent London Converts have had to endure
General Expectations of Irish Romanists that Ireland will soon become a Protestant, and England a Popish Country
The Causes of the Extensive Immigration of Irish to London in Recent Years
The better Class of Poor emigrate from Ireland to America, and the worst Class to London
The Divisions of the Irish of London into Cockneys and Grecians
The Irish of London, as divided into Connaught and Munster Men
Immigration of Immoral Irish Women
The Numbers of the Irish of London who can read English and Irish respectively estimated
Irish Protestants possess more Scriptual Knowledge than English Protestants
Extreme Ignorance on Scriptural Subjects of Irish Romanists, illustrated by Examples
The Irish, on arriving in London, rapidly lose their previous Religious Habits
London considered by the Irish as an Infidel City, in which, without Loss of Character, they may live in the Neglect of all Religious Observances
The Prevalence of Drunkness among the Irish and English compared
The Rookeries are the Parts of London in which the Irish Chiefly dwell
The Occupations of the Irish of London
Especial Suitableness of Irish Scripture-readers and Misisonaries for Irish Districts and the more Especial Facilities with which they may be obtained
Future Hopes
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