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funds allotted for British subjects who could not be found out there has been paid to Greenwich Hospital .

£210 The Marine Society, additional

210 The Dublin Hospital

105 The Royal Infirmary at Edinburgh.. 105 as being public and national Institutions connected with the commerce and navy of this country. After performing the business of the day, and regretting the death of Calverly Bewick, Esq., the late chairman, they passed the following vote of thanks :

“ The Committee at the same time feel it a duty which

they owe to William Vaughan, Esq., one of their “ members, to express to him and to the public their sense “ of obligations for his unwearied zeal and tried integrity in the arduous task of attending to the affairs of this “ committee from its commencement to its close.”

I remember, upon Lord Nelson coming from Vienna in his way from the Mediterranean, his saying that nothing redounded more to the honour of Great Britain, than the putting Foreign seamen upon the same footing as the English.

No. 6.

OF THE INFLUENCE OF SAVINGS' BANKS

ON THE

HABITS AND MORALS OF SOCIETY.

[Continued from p. 19.]

[This Paper was written for private communication, and was afterwards

printed, 31st March, 1818.]

Since the introduction of the Poor Laws in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, there has been perhaps no plan which has held out so many advantages for the bettering the condition of the poor, for increasing their comforts, and promoting their happiness and moral habits, as the system of Savings' Banks.

Though the poor laws might have been adequate for the maintenance of the poor according to the state of society and population at that period, yet these laws, with all their increase of rates, powers, and regulations, have been found every way inadequate to the present state of the country, and the great changes that have taken place in the habits and manners of the people. Notwithstanding the increase of industry, commerce, and wealth, the growth of pauperism has more than kept pace with the advancement of population. The lamentable increase of distress, indigence, and criminal delinquency within these few years has too plainly shown that there must have been something radi. cally wrong and defective in the system of the poor laws, and that the remedies hitherto applied call for new and powerful aids to correct those evils which have so alarmingly preyed on the morals and habits of society. Savings' Banks may be considered as one of those aids, and as forming a new era in the system of political economy. They create by their operations and combinations a new power of the first magnitude by the simplest of all agents.

It has been stated that the creative powers of industry are to property, what education is to the mind; and Savings Banks, by bringing industry and frugality into union and action, will put it in the power

of

every man to better his condition in life by his own exertions. In these institutions he will find a never-failing spur to his industry; a security to property, and a check to many of the evils arising from losses, plunder, and imprudence; and after providing for the common incidents of life, a friendly fund and resource at hand against the day of want, sickness,

and old age.

Savings' Banks have established the great leading principles for which they have been founded ; and there cannot be a stronger proof of their advantage and necessity, than the great alacrity and avidity with which they have been adopted by every class of society; and that out of the savings of industrious persons more than £600,000 has been invested in Government debentures since the passing of the late Act up to the present time.

There have been but few single deposits in the London Institutions exceeding £50 at a time, and their great bulk as to value and number have been under £5. But when it is taken into consideration, how much has been deposited in the first year of the experiment, out of the savings of industrious individuals who may have hoarded

up

funds during the whole course of their lives without use, circulation, or interest, until called into activity by this system; and also how much has been further paid by weekly, monthly, or occasional deposits, exclusive of investments for children, &c. : the depositors of the first class can be of little moment, and are of little detriment to the public.

It might be further added, that every new depositor bringing a new capital into play, produces confidence and example, and affords an additional pledge to the state for the protection and security of property, and for the welfare of society; and that every man, that saves ten or £100 a year out of his income, gains the first perch to independence, and a further removal of himself and his family from a state of dependence and degradation.

When premiums and bounties are granted to encourage fisheries or manufactures, or preserve commercial interests, policy and the welfare of the community have strong claims to promote that laudable spirit of industry, frugality, and independence; which would tend to increase the happiness and comforts of society, lessen crimes and distresses, and in time to decrease many of those great parochial burthens which are oppressive to the rich and

the poor.

It may be also stated that Friendly Societies are found beneficial in making a decent provision for sickness or for a man's family after his decease. Savings Banks are not without their advantages; and by the adoption of both these plans, a man by his prudence creates a fund at all times for the common exigencies of life, and a more decent provision for his family.

Savings Banks may also prove of the first importance in forming an early provident fund against the day of marriage, by laying up a store towards the maintenance of a family. This would decrease many of the evils that proceed from poverty and distress, which are frequently the causes and accompaniments of unhappy marriages, neglected educations, and increased poor-rates.

These hints have been suggested rather to shew the value and importance of Savings Banks in a general and a political point of view, than that of entering into more minute and particular details.

Those who are desirons of forming and promoting Savings Banks, will find ample resources in the reports of the Society for bettering the condition of the Poor, and in a valuable and excellent publication, entitled “ The Annals of Banks for Savings.”

A FRIEND TO HONEST INDUSTRY.

LONDON PROVIDENT INSTITUTION.

To Sir Thomas Baring, Bart., President of the London

Provident Institution.

London, 22d Feb. 1836. MY DEAR SIR, The circumstances that prevented my resignation of the situation of Chairman of the superintending Committee of this Institution, at the last and eighteenth general and annual meeting, induced me to wait for the next, about to be held on the 26th inst.

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