HL Deb 09 March 1832 vol 11 cc2-30
The Earl of Coventry

said, that although the Petition which he held in his hand, and which proceeded from the operatives employed in the glove-trade residing in the city and suburbs of Worcester, praying their Lordships to institute an inquiry into the state of the Glove-trade, had been in his possession some time, he had judged it best to present it upon the day on which a noble Viscount had given notice of a motion for a Committee of Inquiry into the crying evils so justly complained of by large numbers of their suffering fellow countrymen, in the hope and fervent prayer that the voice of 2,200 persons might not have to make this appeal to their Lordships' humanity in vain. And who were those who had signed it? Men desirous only of using their handicraft, to live by their own industry; loyal subjects, lovers of their homes and country, and desirous only of dying as they had lived previous to the detestable free-trade system, with the means of supporting themselves and their families by their praiseworthy and honest industry. To him it was indeed a source of pride, to be chosen (whatever want of wisdom on their parts might attach to such choice from any in-competency to do justice to the case) the advocate of 2,200 persons in this walk of life, from a city he formerly had the honour of representing in Parliament. He could never cease to implore the House to give ear to their sufferings, and to grant relief according to the prayer of the petition which he had now the honour to lay upon the Table of the House,

Petition read.

Order of the Day for the appointment of a Select Committee to inquire into the state of the Glove-trade also read.

Viscount Strang ford

said, that in addressing their Lordships upon the subject which he should endeavour to lay before them, he was so deeply impressed with a sense of its importance, that he should wish to give to the motion which he was about to submit to the House a fair chance of success, or, at least, to diminish its chances of failure, by disclaiming, in limine, all intention of converting it into a mere instrument of party hostility. He would, therefore, at once set out with a distinct declaration, that in humbly but earnestly endeavouring to do his duty to that unfortunate class of his fellow-countrymen who had done him the honour to place their interests in his hands, he had no earthly object in view beyond the maintenance of those interests; that he was not now seeking to establish any charge against his Majesty's Ministers for sacrificing or neglecting them; and that, in urgently pressing upon the King's Government the full and fair consideration of the daily augmenting grievances under which they laboured, and of the remedies to be applied to them, he did so in a spirit so far from unfriendly, that he was willing to avow his reliance on their justice and humanity, anti to look to those feelings alone for the success of the motion which he was about to propose. The condition of the British Glove-trade had notoriously fallen from progressive prosperity to a state of decay and distress yet more appalling, if possible, than even that by which other branches of our national industry had been afflicted. The persons concerned in this trade, did not hesitate to ascribe their ruin, and that of the thousands depending on them for bread, to the operation of what was called free-trade, to the unlimited introduction of foreign gloves into this country, both legally, and by smuggling and to their utter inability, taxed as they are, to maintain anything like a fair and equitable competition with the French manufacturer. In all this they might be right, or they might be wrong. It formed no part of his case to assume without evidence that they were right. It would be no answer to them to assume without evidence that they were wrong. The matter was too important to be left at the mercy of mere assertion on either side, and the only fair and safe mode of trying the question was, by parliamentary inquiry. He intreated their Lordships to believe, that his own sentiments on the subject of free-trade in general had nothing whatever to do with the present question. In those sentiments he feared that, as yet, at least, he might look for little sympathy on either side of the House. But he must continue to think, until he should see far other practical results from the free-trade system than the ruin and wretchedness of hundreds of thousands, that "the lights which had led us astray" had not been "light from Heaven." But, be his own opinions what they might, it was to the advocates of free-trade themselves that he had a right to look for his best support on this occasion. If their theories were really so beneficial in practice as they represented them, and as, he doubted not they honestly believed them to be, why should they shrink from placing those benefits in the clearest and most conspicuous light? Why should they shrink from an opportunity of confounding those who impugned the merits of those theories? Why fear an inquiry which, if they were right in their views, would only redound to their honour, and to the disgrace and discomfiture of their adversaries? Why should that be refused in the case of that class of productive labour which this night appealed to them, which was not refused in other cases—those of wool, for example, and coals and silk? There were, he thought, very many reasons why this branch of trade, so far from deserving to be treated worse than others, had many peculiar claims to their protection and favour. Look at its connection with the agricultural interests of the country, through the profit which the landlord and the farmer once derived from the sale of the raw material. He would take only one branch of this manufacture as an example. The leather employed in that particular branch (oil or beaver gloves) was made from native English sheep and lamb skins to the extent of 1,500,000 per annum. Many of these skins now went undressed to America; and, owing to the importation of foreign skins, the price had already fallen to less than one-third of what it was; that was, from 70s. to 22s. 6d. per ten dozen. He stated it advisedly, because he could prove it, that this million and a half of skins now disused made more gloves than the whole increased quantity of foreign skins would supply. But look, too, at the other, the moral claims which this trade had upon their Lordships' special protection. It was a trade which gave constant and remunerating employment to thousands of women and children, whose earnings, joined to those of the agricultural labourer, kept the latter in such a condition of independence and comfort, that it was a known fact, that those districts where the glove-trade prevailed had ever been peaceable, contented, and loyal, and comparatively exempt from those scenes of riot and incendiarism which had disgraced or desolated other parts of the country. It was a trade, too, in every way productive not merely of comfort, but of domestic and social order and happiness. The peasant's home was his manufactory—there was no crowding of miserable children from night till morning, and from morning till night, in pestilential factories—there was no sacrifice of health, and life, and morals, and religion, to the Moloch of gain—there was no assemblage of ignorant multitudes to listen to the inflammatory harangues of furious demagogues, till their passions were worked into madness, and they became, first the tools, and then the victims, of treason. How these scenes of tranquillity and comfort had been changed of late he should presently show; how much more fearfully they might yet be changed was a consideration well worthy the serious attention of all those who were to give a vote that night. He held it to be the bounden duty of Parliament, not to refuse inquiry when a prima facie case of grievance or distress was made out affecting any class of the King's subjects, and alleged and offered to be proved by them to originate in legislative enactments. That such a case did exist in the present instance he was fully prepared to prove. It would be for their Lordships to show whether they were prepared to do that which he had said he held to be their duty. He would proceed to take some of the towns which were the chief seats of the glove manufactory, and he would state nothing regarding them which could not be proved by documentary evidence. Here, then, was the past and present condition of Woodstock:—A great number of the inhabitants were, and had been from their childhood, engaged in the manufacture of oil leather gloves, as masters and operatives, and others were, in a great measure, dependent indirectly on its success. The leather from which their gloves were made was entirely of home produce. The animal was bred here; the pelt (the skin) was prepared and milled (that was, made into leather) here; the leather was afterwards dressed, dyed, &c., and made into gloves here. So that other trades besides the glove manufacture were materially interested. In consequence of the admission of French gloves into the market, a lamentable diminution had taken place in the value and consumption of English leather and gloves. The effect was, that thousands of work-people were thrown out of employ, and numbers of females who formerly assisted in earning a living for their families were driven to the revolting labour of preparing road materials, or to their parishes, for aid. The evil was daily increasing; and, in places where peace and comfort reigned among the labouring part of the population, distress and misery had compelled them to resort to pilfering, poaching, and similar dishonest courses. Workmen, who could formerly earn from 20s. to 30s. per week, had been employed in the roads at from 8d. to 14d. per day; and numbers of females, who materially assisted in earning a decent support for their families, had been driven to similar tasks at 4d. per day. The masters had struggled on, hoping for some alleviation of their difficulties, but they could not much longer bear up against them, and, unless supported by the Government, either by insisting on foreign states entering into a reciprocal system of trade, or prohibiting their manufactures, they (the masters) anticipated utter ruin. An increase of quantity had sometimes been alleged as a proof of prosperity, but an opposite result had been the consequence from several causes. One was, that some manufacturers conceived they might keep the French gloves out of the market by making more at a less profit. Thus A made 10,000l. worth at the profit of five per cent, and subsequently made to the amount of 20,000l. in the same time, calculating upon two-and-a-half per cent profit. B, C, and D, followed the same course; the end was, that the supply exceeded the demand, and instead of a profit and immense loss was sustained. Another cause was, the inadequate wages paid; a third, the deterioration of quality. Cheap! cheap! was now the universal cry, and man's ingenuity of late had been racked to substitute a spurious for a genuine article. Foreign countries had been inundated with this trash, the consumers had been imposed upon, and the former high character of the British manufacturer had been sacrificed. The manufacturers of Woodstock and parts adjacent, complained of diminished demand and inadequate remuneration, and their work-people of want of employment, both of which they traced back to the admission of French gloves into the home market. From that period to the present, difficulties had increased upon them with diminished means, and accumulating claims, and those who had yet something left, saw no prospect for the future but in the prompt interference of the Legislature in their behalf. He would spare their Lordships the fatigue of listening to the detailed proofs of those allegations. But he thought these proofs were all condensed in the statement, which he should now read, of the progressive increase of the poor-rates in Woodstock and the adjoining parishes:—In 1825, 684l.; 1831, estimated at 1,200l., not yet made up. Bladen parish:—Year ending March, 1825, 241l.; ditto (expected) 1832, 599l. Wooton parish:—1825, 739l.; 1831, 1,310l. He would next take Worcester. Here then was the case of the glove trade in that city:—In 1825, the glove trade was in a healthy, flourishing state, giving employment to 30,000 or 40,000 persons, a great proportion of whom were women and children, wives and daughters of the agricultural poor for many miles round that city; and in periods of agricultural depression they contributed mainly to support their husbands and fathers. In 1827, a deputation from Worcester waited on the Board of Trade, and pointed out their inability to compete with the French; and also the defalcation occasioned to the revenue by the system of free trade in gloves. They were told to be patient, and the advantages would soon be seen, not only to the nation, but even to themselves. The result of a perseverance in this system had been the destruction of a great part of the manufacturers of Worcester, and the consequent distress and destruction of the work-people dependent on them. Now, in corroboration of this statement, he again begged leave to refer to that lamentable but true criterion, the increase of poor-rates. This was the statement of those rates for one week in 1825, and the corresponding week in 1832:—The poor-rates at Worcester were trebled; the amount paid to relieve the poor for one week in January, 1825, was 13l. 19s.; number of cases relieved out of the house 170; number in the house at that period, 131; in January, 1832, the amount paid to relieve the casual poor, was 40l. 11s.: number of cases relieved, 445; number in the house, 190. The treasurer was considerably in advance, and the distress was rapidly increasing. At the present moment there were, of 1,000 men, in full employment only 113; partial, some at 2s. 6d. per week, 465; totally unemployed, 422; and there were 1,748 children entirely dependent on these men. But this part of the subject, that of Worcester, he left in much better hands (those of a right reverend Prelate opposite, to whom he appealed), and whose benevolent exertions had done himself and his order the highest honour in the eyes of that grateful population whose wretchedness had excited his sympathy and called forth his truly Christian services. And while on this subject he might, he hoped, be allowed to address a word to the rest of the right reverend Bench, and to remind them that the matter now before them was one of common charity and humanity, and (as far as such principles depended upon the temporal condition of the poor) of morals and of religion too. He would now advert to Yeovil, the prosperity of which had been strongly inferred from the number of glove manufactories having nearly doubled since the introduction of free trade. This fallacy he thought he sufficiently exposed the other night, and he would not again recur to it. Here, however, was the case of the glove trade at this flourishing town of Yeovil:—Yeovil, previously to the admission of French gloves, was in a state of high prosperity, giving employment to several thousands of people for several miles round. Since that period the glove trade had continued to decline as a remunerating one, and the work people were reduced to half their former earnings, and distress and want abounded in all directions. At the present time the manufacturers, not willing to throw a great body of people entirely out of employ, had put the whole of them on half work, and this humane plan was totally counteracted by the increased orders sent to France to meet the deficiency of goods manufactured here. The operatives were, however, peaceable and quiet, and looked with confidence to the result of the appeal about to be made to this House of Parliament. In Stoke and Martock upwards of 500 dozens of beaver gloves were made weekly before 1826; now scarcely 50 dozens; and many of the work-people and their families subsisted almost wholly on potatoes grown by themselves on plots of ground rented of the farmers. To this he would again add his corroborative proof drawn from poor-rates:—Occasional relief granted to the poor from Lady-day, 1825, to Lady-day, 1826, 593l.; 1827, 883l.; 1828, 881l.; 1829, 1,090l.; 1830, 996l. From Lady-day, 1831, to Michaelmas, 1831, being two quarters only, 504l. To this statement he begged leave to add, that in 1820, Yeovil had 115 paupers on the books, receiving 18l. 13s. per week; there were now, that is, during the week ending on Saturday last, 210 paupers, receiving 30l. 15s. 9d. per week. From Ludlow he had been disappointed in obtaining returns of the poor-rates, but this was the state of the glove trade there:—In Ludlow there were formerly made from 1,200 to 1,500 dozens of gloves weekly; now not more than fifty dozens. The trade gave employment to 1,000 persons, out of a population of little more than 5,000. The distress in this place could be better imagined than described. At Kingston the past and present condition of the glove manufacture was this:—In Kingston, within ten years, as many as 8,000 dozens of beaver gloves had been made annually; now scarcely any were made, and what had latterly been made remained principally on the makers' hands. The state of the poor in this place beggared all description; and the question was, what would the poor do now? He would not pursue these painful details any further. He thought he had said enough to show that there was a prima facie case of suffering and distress made out, and into the causes of that distress, he did conceive, their Lordships were bound to inquire. He should be told, perhaps, that he inferred too much from augmented poor rates—that, as population increased, so must poor-rates too. Now, in answer to this, he was prepared to show that the poor-rates in the places which he had mentioned had increased in a far greater ratio and with far greater rapidity than the population. But admitting the accuracy of this objection to his argument drawn from poor-rates, what did it amount to? To the frightful and sickening conclusion that, if population and poor-rates were necessarily to increase together, a time would come when each child that was to be born in the labouring classes was to be born to an heritage of misery and want, an object of extorted charity, and a profitless burthen on the community. Those who would argue thus must have strange and unenviable notions of the justice and benevolence of that Providence whose first, command it was, to be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth. It might also be argued that these were merely ex-parte statements. True; but it was not his fault that they were merely ex-parte. It was exactly what he wished them not to be; and, to prevent them from continuing to be so, he wished them to be put to the test of a Committee. They were ex-parte statements. But what, then, were the statements of those who had resisted inquiry? Ex-parte too. Let them bring these statements to the same test as that to which he was willing to bring his; let them be tried in the same crucible, and he feared not the comparative result of the experiment, nor doubted for a moment which would yield pure metal, and which would produce nothing but dross. Now, with respect to the quantity of French gloves legally imported into this country, the Custom House returns showed that the annual average was about 96,000 dozens of pairs, or in round numbers, (it was something more) at the rate of 3,000 pairs per diem. Taking the average labour of men, women, and children, employed in making gloves, beginning with the raw material, and working it up through all its stages, he was assured that one pair might be considered as the employment of one individual in each day. Thus the daily substitution of 3,000 pairs of French gloves for 3,000 pairs of British, destroyed the labour of 3,000 British artizans, and with it destroyed or lowered the rate of comfort of perhaps twenty times that number. Now, one word more as to importations through the Custom House. He took that of London. He held in his hand an authentic document, showing the progressive increase in the importation of French gloves during one month in each year, since the year 1829. He took the shortest month in the year, that of February. In that month of 1829 there were 4,688 dozens of pair imported; in 1830, 6,036 dozen; in 1831, 6,748 dozens; in 1832, (including 316 dozens now in warehouse), the enormous number of 9,162 dozens of pairs; making a difference, as compared with February 1829, of 4,474 dozens of pairs. How, then, in the face of a rapidly increasing importation like this, could we say to the starving British manufacturer, "Only have patience!—pray be quiet!—this is an admirable system—but don't be impatient—and, above all things, don't be so unreasonable as to suppose that we shall condescend to waste our time in inquiring whether this increasing importation will not soon annihilate your trade altogether! We wear gloves—you only make them: what on earth should you know about the matter?" So much for the avowed and lawful importation of gloves through the Custom House. Now, as to smuggling: The noble President of the Board of Trade and he broke an amicable lance upon that subject a few nights ago. He told him that there was but very little smuggling in this article. He did not, to be sure, go quite so far as his right hon. Vicegerent in another place, and assert that only 100 dozens were smuggled into England in the course of a year. But he said that there was very little smuggling, and he appealed to the conjoint testimony of Custom House officers and of smugglers; something in the style of the old Spanish fable of the cat bearing witness for the honesty of the rat, and the rat attesting the vigilance of the cat. He did not think either very good authority. The Custom House officer would naturally say, there was no smuggling, to enhance the value of his own services; the smuggler for the best of all personal reasons. But, at the very moment of the noble Lord's speech, he made a vow that he would deprive him of the triumph which his confidential intercourse with smugglers had given him. So he proceeded to place himself too in communication with smugglers Et nos quoque in Arcadiâ viximus; and he was proud to say, that he succeeded in finding some as daring, and as desperate, and as reckless as any, or almost any, set of men with whom the noble Lord had ever associated, and he thought he had associated with men of that description, daring, and desperate, and very reckless indeed! Now, his smugglers said, in flat contradiction to the noble Lord's smugglers, that smuggling had increased, was increasing, and ought to be—no, that they did not say—ought not to be diminished. Let the noble Lord but grant him the Committee, and full protection for his contraband friends and for himself, and he would produce, and the noble Lord should examine them. But, after all, he thought there were many circumstances which clearly indicated, though they might fail to prove it, that the practice of smuggling to a very great extent existed. It prevailed in the silk trade, as his Majesty's Ministers and Messrs. Leaf most undoubtedly knew. Why not also in gloves? There was the same temptation and the same facility, and such ingenious contrivances as the tunnel at Margate would answer as well for gloves as for silk. The difference between the duty and the rate of insurance at which a cargo of French gloves could be guaranteed to reach this country, free from all damage and risk whatever, was surely a sufficient bonus on, and encouragement of, the practice of smuggling. But, besides, there were abundant inferences from other facts, that smuggling did exist to an enormous extent. Look at the extreme low prices at which vast quantities of foreign gloves were sold in the market here, and at which no fair trader could, by any possibility, afford to sell them. Look, too, at the very suspicious and remarkable fact which had been stated to him, that there was not scarcely an instance of a retail tradesman living near the coast who ever sent an order to London for the higher priced kid skin gloves, apparently finding it shorter and cheaper work to supply himself on the coast from the noble Baron's friends and his. He would not now repeat what he had said before in this place touching sundry fallacious and, he thought, not very wise assertions, which were gravely uttered elsewhere, respecting the condition of this trade; the non-existence of smuggling, except, perhaps, at the rate of 100 dozens per annum; the increased importation of skins; the increased quantity of gloves made; the increased number of factories; and all the various other sorts of increase, except the increase of human wretchedness, which was carefully kept out of sight; the story about Berlin gloves; and every other point to which, on a former night, he had adverted. Should they be reproduced this evening, it would then be time enough to trouble the House with a further notice of them. And he would at once come to the only argument which could with any plausibility be urged against a Committee—the argument of cui bono. To what good end should a Committee be appointed? What good was to be expected from its labours? What could a Committee recommend? A return to the old, exploded, abominable system of prohibition? Oh, monstrous! far better leave things as they were than raise expectations that could never be relieved. He told their Lordships plainly and positively that they could not leave things as they were, and, that if they could, they ought not. It was quite idle to suppose that the famishing workmen and their half ruined masters would credit their sentimental professions of delicacy and tenderness for their feelings, or that they would believe that they refused inquiry merely to avoid giving them the pain of a disappointment? Did noble Lords then know so very little of human nature as to imagine that no consolation, no comfort, under the pressure of want and misery, was derived from the mere faculty of tittering their complaints, and from the knowledge that they were, at least, listened to and sympathised in? He regretted that the people would not believe that they refused inquiry merely out of mercy to their feelings; but he would tell them what they would believe should their Lordships refuse this inquiry. They would believe that they refused it merely because it was refused in another place, and that they were thus obliged to uphold, at all risks, the honour and the consistency of that individual Minister who then refused it, and to adopt all the monstrous assertions and assumptions with which he sought to justify that refusal. But, to return to the question of cui bono. He was far from admitting as a just logical dilemma that the Committee must either recommend nothing at all, or else a return to the old system of prohibition. He thought that many things might be done to relieve the trade short of prohibition, to which, though no advocate for free trade in the present limited and left-handed sense of the word, he was not at all prepared to assent. He would briefly suggest some of them, not as matured ideas, but merely to show that something might be done. For instance, the Committee might recommend that the duty should be an ad valorem duty, instead of one uniform duty, on all sorts and qualities of gloves. It might recommend that smuggling should in all cases be punished with imprisonment. This could be but just, for gentlemen and ladies caught smuggling at Dover, on landing from the packets, could think nothing of a pecuniary fine in comparison of being marched off to gaol, [A laugh.] Noble Lords might laugh, but they must allow him to say, that this would be even-handed justice—a thing about which, with their usual good opinion of themselves, they were prodigiously fond of talking and vapouring, but of which there was, he suspected, but very little in this country when wealthy smugglers were concerned. Stamping might be introduced under proper modifications. He would not go so far as to place the dealer in French gloves under the Excise, though he thought something like it might be done. He should wish, too, that, in all instances of seizure the onus probandi should rest, with the party from whom seized, and not, as was absurdly the case, with the captor. But there was another remedy far more efficacious than all these. Call upon France to become a really reciprocating country. That government had the power of doing so with effect, if they would only exert that power, as was shown by the late reduction in the tonnage duties—a subject, by the way, on which he should still have, one of these days, a word or two to say to the noble President of the Board of Trade. Now, he wished Government to exert themselves a little also in favour of the glove trade. He was quite persuaded that if they could induce the French government to admit, on a moderate duty, our English-made oil-leather or beaver gloves, it would partly tend to restore that branch of the trade, now nearly destroyed, and, by turning the skill and capital of a portion of the kid-skin glove-makers to that article, would give a healthy tone to the whole trade, and be productive of immense relief to the agricultural interest, by reviving the demand for the now disused British skins. He would not trust himself to say all he thought on this point—the admission by France of our fabrics, in return for the benefits which the free trade system heaped upon her, nor of the persevering injustice and unfriendliness manifested in her constant refusal to make any change in her commercial policy at all favourable to the subjects of that too generous and too confiding country by which those benefits had been heaped upon her. He knew that this was delicate and dangerous ground. He knew that if a word was ever said at all reflecting upon France, or her proceedings, up started some noble and pacific Lord, and directly accused those on the side of the House on which he sat, of a design to kindle the flames of war between the two countries. It seemed as if it were thought, that peace with France could not be preserved except by a system of "Oh, no! we never mention her." He should, however, without having the fear of war before his eyes, persist in using that "once familiar word," as synonymous with the cause of two-thirds of that distress which now overwhelmed the manufacturing population of this once happy and prosperous country. He feared he troubled their Lordships at too great length. He thanked them for the indulgence with which they had heard him, of which he was sensible how greatly he stood in need. But, before he sat down, he must be allowed to say to their Lordships, that he did most earnestly hope they would by their vote this night, do that which would mainly contribute to dispel the calumnies and falsehoods with which it had of late been the practice to assail that House of Parliament. Of all the various modes of vilifying the House of Lords which had been or might be resorted to, there was none which it would give him greater pain to see justified by fact than the charge of being indifferent to the prayers of the people, when their prayers happen to be, as they were in this instance, reasonable and just. Their Lordships would do wisely and well to shun the possibility of such an imputation, and seize the present opportunity of showing to the country that, whatever might be the decisions of another assembly, they, at least, were not bound by them, and that they were what they ought to be, and what he trusted, they would always continue to be—the conservative portion of the state. He could not more fitly conclude these observations than by reading a brief abstract from the Worcester petition recently presented to that House, and subsequently printed:— Your petitioners earnestly hope, and confidently trust, that the humane and generous feeling which animated and distinguished the ancient Peerage of England, will be found to exist in the bosom of the present British nobility. The paths of your illustrious ancestors were frequently difficult and dangerous, but death itself possessed no terrors sufficiently strong to sever their attachment from the people. Your path is different. For your Lordships is reserved the pleasing gratification of restoring employment, content, and comfort, to tens of thousands of your humble but grateful fellow-countrymen. To the decision of your Lordships we look with a confident hope of relief. Cast us not into the depths of despair. He had now the honour of moving their Lordships, that a Select Committee of this House be appointed to inquire into the present distressed state of the British glove trade.

The Bishop of Bath and Wells

rose to confirm the statement of the noble Lord so far as the glove trade was connected with his diocese. At the town of Yeovil, he could state, of his own knowledge, the men, women, and children employed in the glove trade were formerly in a state of comparative prosperity and comfort; but, since the introduction of French gloves, they had been reduced to a state of the greatest suffering, and of absolute poverty. He did not wish to enter into the question of free trade, and he rose, at the desire of the people of Yeovil to make this statement to the House, which was but the counterpart of that contained in a petition which he had the honour to present on their behalf to his Majesty. He hoped their Lordships would give their best consideration to the subject, and he left it in their hands, with the fullest reliance on their wisdom and humanity.

Lord Auckland

rose, with reluctance, to offer some objections to the Motion which had just been made by the noble Viscount. It would be far more agreeable to him, were such a course consistent with his sense of public duty, to give his assent to the Motion. The greater part of the noble Lord's speech had been directed to these two objects; first, to show that great distress actually existed; and, secondly, that that distress arose from the large importation of French gloves. He not only denied the extent of the distress which the noble Lord had assumed to exist, but he utterly denied, that that portion of distress which did prevail was occasioned by the causes to which it had been ascribed. He did not yield to the noble Lord, or to any man in the country, in sympathizing deeply with the privations to which the persons engaged in the glove trade were subject, nor did he yield to any person in existence in a most anxious desire to afford such relief as circumstances would permit. But he had no hesitation in declaring, that the appointment of a Committee for the purpose demanded could lead to no practical result. Indeed, an inquiry, unless it could be made the foundation of some legislative measure, which he saw no hope of in this case, must be productive of evil, and not of good. It could have no other effect than to create excitement and agitation among those engaged in the trade, and would only tend to unsettle their minds by expectations of change which could not be realized, and which were at utter variance with the general commercial policy of the country. He was persuaded that neither the majority of their Lordships, nor even the noble Lord himself, would think of adopting the remedies suggested in these petitions, and where, then, could be the advantage of going into an inquiry on a mere case of distress, without a hope that a remedy could be applied? The ground on which those concerned in the glove trade rested their petitions for inquiry was the effect of the foreign competition, while the reasons for which a Committee had been granted in the silk and wool trades were of a different description. The glove trade was regulated on as favourable terms as it could be. France came into the market on equal, or rather, he should say, unequal terms of competition with our manufacturers, for her gloves were not introduced into our market except upon a duty of twenty-two per cent. Both the French and English manufacturer purchased the materials at the same market; but, by superior skill, the former were enabled to obtain a certain degree of superiority in the finer branches of the trade, while, in the great bulk of the trade, they were inferior to ourselves. Throughout the discussion of this question a much greater portion of distress had been stated to arise from the importation of foreign gloves than was really capable of springing from that source. During the last four years, the importation of foreign gloves had only increased in a small degree. In 1831, it was somewhat more than in 1828, though there was some falling off in 1829 and 1830. The whole annual manufacture of this country amounted to 15,000,000 pair of gloves, and the whole importation during the last year was only a little above 1,000,000. Surely that could not be said alone to have produced such overwhelming distress in the glove trade. Their Lordships must, therefore, look to other causes to account for that distress, and he believed that they could easily be found. They must see whether more capital had not been invested—whether more persons had not been employed—whether, in fact, the trade had not been too much extended; and also, whether, subsequent to that extension, there had not been a change in the fashion, a choice of another article for wearing, and whether these, with other internal circumstances, had not produced the distress. He thought he should easily satisfy their Lord- ships that such was the case. The glove trade had not positively declined, as might be seen from the fact, that the importation of skins had much increased. In 1829, the number of skins imported was 2,029,000. In 1830, the number was increased; and, in 1831, it amounted to nearly 4,000,000. But at the same time that this increase of importation of the raw material took place, there was an increase of the number of those who were to manufacture it. The population of Yeovil, which had been so often mentioned, amounted, in 1821, to 4,659; while, in 1831, it had increased to 5,921, showing an increase of twenty-five per cent: In Chard, the population in 1821, had been 3,000; in 1831, it was 5,000. In a third place, the population had, in the same period, increased from 1,440 to 2,072; so that, in all these places, the number of those engaged in the manufacture had so much increased as sensibly to affect the amount of the profits to be divided between them. That increase of population was not, however, the only cause of the distress now complained of. The consumption of cotton gloves and of linen gloves had materially increased within the last four years. Indeed, before that time, there was scarcely any thing of that kind used. By a return which he held in his hand, it appeared that there were 300 looms applied to the manufacture of cotton gloves, and that the looms produced 187,000 pairs of gloves. Besides these looms, there were manufactories of gloves, of which no return had been made; and then there were the linen gloves—so that the whole number of that kind of gloves was 200,000 pairs. The effect of this manufacture upon the trade of Worcester was, that, within these four years it had fallen off nearly one-third. It had produced 7,000,000 pair of gloves; but there was now a falling off to the amount he had mentioned. Then, too, there had been a new manufacture established at Leicester, so that the extension of the trade in that direction must have affected the trade at Worcester, and, in fact, all those who had before carried it on. It was clear, from this statement of facts, that by no legislative enactment, could the existing distress among a portion of the glove manufacturers be removed; that nothing could be done by the Legislature to raise those who had formerly been engaged in the glove manufactory to a state of prosperity, without doing that which would be hostile to the other interests of the country. But, supposing that the distress could possibly be removed by legislative interference, was the noble Lord prepared to point out in the Committee the measure that ought to be adopted to produce that effect? The noble Lord had mentioned an ad valorem duty. With respect to that, he should only observe, that he had seen a great many of the leading manufacturers, and had asked them their opinion as to the regulations on that subject, and whether they wished any alteration of the present duties; but they all answered that the duties were fairly placed, and they desired no alteration in that respect. He would say for himself and his colleagues, that if a reconsideration of the duties could be of any use or advantage to the glove trade, the Government would not for a moment hesitate to take them into consideration; but such did not appear to be the opinion of the manufacturers, and he himself believed that the duties were fixed as exactly as they could be. There could be no advantage in raising the duties, for it was notorious that high duties only encouraged smuggling. The amount of smuggling in silk was considerable, because the duties were high, while in gloves there was no systematic smuggling whatever; the only smuggling of gloves was that of individuals. Another plan that had been referred to, for the purpose of relieving the manufacturers, was, the affixing a stamp on the gloves. That plan had been tried with respect to silk and lace, but it had failed in both instances. Such a plan, he believed, now existed with respect to paper; but the effect was, that the stamp in all these cases was invariably forged on the other side of the water. He had taken pains to procure evidence on that subject, with a view of seeing what time would be taken up in examining gloves at the Custom House, if they were to be stamped, and he found, that the same quantity which it now took half an hour to examine, would then take a day and a half. It appeared to him, therefore, quite impossible to apply a stamp-duty as a protection. But it was also unnecessary, for, as he had before said, there was no systematic smuggling in gloves. The authority he quoted for that assertion was avery high one on such a point—it was that of the undertaker and insurer of smuggling at Calais. That person stated the prices at which smuggling might be carried on. After mentioning the prices as to figured silks, and other articles of a similar kind, he said to his correspondent, "But I should advise you to try nothing in gloves—they do not pay." Another authority which he could quote to the same point, was that of the Board of Customs, the members of which were satisfied that there was no smuggling in gloves. Besides these authorities, the great dealers in London were of the same opinion. One of them, an importer during the last year to the amount of 133,000 pairs, said, that if there was smuggling in gloves, it would not pay him to import gloves on which the duty was paid, as the smugglers would undersell him in the market. The noble Lord seemed to press for the adoption of a principle of retaliation. He trusted that the noble Lord did not hold out that as the means of encouragement of national trade and industry. If that principle were adopted, the evils of it would fall principally on ourselves. France had been referred to. There was no country on the face of the globe by which so useful and complete a commentary was furnished upon the prohibitory system as by France. No country had been gifted by nature with more advantages—she had tried the prohibitory system in every respect in which it could possibly be applied, and yet it was notorious, that in that country there was scarcely one manufacturer that was in a prosperous condition. He referred for proof of this to their silk trade, their cotton trade, their iron, which, by the way, on account of the prohibitory system, cost the inhabitants of that country double what they might otherwise get it for, and he might even refer to their vineyards, in which, as in others, the restrictive system led to nothing but to poverty. They had applied in France the protecting system to all the articles he had mentioned, and also to the manufacture of beet-root sugar, in order to force the cultivation of one particular kind of produce at home, and the result was highly unfavourable to the people. From all these circumstances, he thought that they must look to other causes for relief from this distress; they must look to the effects of an improved commercial intercourse with France, and not those of a violent retaliation upon her; they must look to the greater diffusion of knowledge on this subject, to the greater power of public opinion, and to the effect which the late conduct of this country must produce on the minds of those who observed it. The noble Lord had spoken as if the importation of French gloves was a pure loss to this country. He must declare himself opposed to that supposition, since it was evident, that either they came here for nothing, or else in exchange for some of the products of our own industry; for, notwithstanding the old story about the balance of trade, and the prohibition laws, it was the fact that our goods found their way into France. It was clear, therefore, that they could not check the importation of foreign gloves without injuring some of the other interests of the country; and they must carry prohibition into complete effect, if they carried it into effect at all. He should deprecate such a course, convinced as he was that it could not be adopted but at the expense of our best interests.

The Duke of Wellington

said, that he should be the last man to propose to the House that any system should be adopted which would have the effect of altering the policy of this country with respect to its commercial relations; but he wished to say, that when free trade was talked of as existing in this country, the assertion was an absurdity. There was no such thing, there could be no such thing as free trade in this country. We proceeded on the system of protecting our manufactures, and our produce, the produce of our labour and our soil, of protecting them from importation, and protecting them for home consumption, and on that universal system of protection it was absurd to talk of free trade. He hoped that system would continue, and he should be sorry to see the House depart from it. He concurred with what the noble Lord, the President of the Board of Trade, had said as to the intercourse between this country and France. He was most desirous of not checking that intercourse; but that was not the question which had been brought forward by his noble friend. The question was, whether they should have an inquiry, not for the purpose of substituting a prohibition for a duty, which, by the bye, was a prohibition to a certain extent, but for the purpose of ascertaining whether some alteration in the present system could not be made, so far as to give the manufacturers a better protection than the duty now afforded them; and whether some satisfaction ought not to be given to the glove manufacturers, by proving to them that the distress they were suffering was not the result of the measures of the Government. He thought they ought to have that inquiry. Some said the duty was too high, and, therefore, there was smuggling; some said it was too low, and, therefore, the importation of foreign gloves was too great. The only means of deciding between these opposite opinions was, to grant a Committee. The very statement of the noble Lord showed that it was desirable to have a Committee, for then they could agree as to those facts which he had stated, and thus satisfy those who now complained that the cause of their distress was either one for which no remedy could be afforded by the Government, or that if the Government possessed the means of affording a remedy, they were ready to give it. When he was on the other side of the House, two Committees had been granted under similar circumstances. The first was upon the wool trade, the other on the coal trade. At the time those Committees were moved for, he declared the opinion of the Government, that after the fullest consideration of the question relating to the wool duties, they should not be able to alter those duties; and after the Committee had sat, no alteration did take place. In the same manner a Committee had been granted to inquire into the state of the coal trade, although he stated at the time that the Government could not consent to any alteration either in the King's duty or the city duties, in consequence of the result of that inquiry. Now his noble friend only asked for a Committee of Inquiry, without pledging the Government to make any alteration when that inquiry had taken place. Under these circumstances, without feeling a strong hope that anything would or could be done towards improving the condition of the glove manufacturers, he felt it right to vote for the Committee, in order to allow the case to be fully investigated.

The Marquis of Clanricarde

wished to remark that the whole of the petitions which had been presented to the House on the subject of the glove trade, with one single exception, that presented by the noble Earl this night, prayed not for inquiry and consideration as to their grievances, but for prohibition. That had been asked for over and over again by those of whom the noble Viscount opposite was the Representative, and had been refused. The whole argument in the other House of Parliament went to the propriety, not of raising the duty, or providing other means of protection, but for effecting a total prohibition. If their Lordships went into this inquiry, it was impossible but that they must excite in the minds of the petitioners hopes that could never be realized. He would not enter into a discussion of the principles of free-trade, but at the same time, he must observe, that if their Lordships went back to prohibition in one branch of manufacture, they would soon be called upon to do so in another, and finally in all branches. Free-trade, to an unlimited extent, certainly embraced a wide field, and into a comparison of that principle, and one of protecting duties, according to the interests of the different parties concerned in any particular branch of trade, he would not enter; but as respected the principle which had been adopted, it was that of a departure from prohibition. If their Lordships were prepared to abandon that principle, in respect of this portion of the trade of the country, they would accede to his noble friend's Motion for the appointment of this Committee; but if, on the other hand, they thought that a return to the prohibitory system would be detrimental to the interests of the country at large, they would refuse the Motion. His noble friend appeared to be content to go back to the old system in respect of this trade, but he must recollect, that the glove trade formed a very small portion of the manufactures of the empire; and he had not heard one word in answer to his noble friend, the President of the Board of Trade's argument, as respected the cotton, woollen, silk, and other important branches of our manufactures. His noble friend must also recollect that the quantity of French gloves imported into this country, was comparatively very small, and a very large portion of that quantity consisted of women's gloves. He did not know whether it was so, but he thought it was very likely, that his noble friend, even at the moment while he was advocating the cause of the English glove-trade, himself wore a pair of French kid gloves. But, however that might be, it was quite clear that the French excelled us in the preparation of their leather, and in the fineness of their work; and, therefore, so long as that was the case, so long as their manufacture was better than that of the English, it was impossible that any law could give protection to the home manufacture, because a supply would find its way into this country, so long as the higher classes of society would pay the price, and fashion prescribed them. Inasmuch, therefore, as his noble friend himself entertained doubts as to the extent of good that might be expected to arise from granting his Motion, and as the noble Duke stated that he had little hope of its being possible to remedy the evil of which the petitioners complain, he thought their Lordships would feel no hesitation in rejecting the Motion of his noble friend.

Lord Ellenborough

, in stating that it was his intention to vote in favour of the Motion of his noble friend, wished it to be understood that he had no desire to encourage the glove manufacturers to suppose that Parliament had the least intention of returning to a system of prohibition, because he thought it was impossible to conceive anything productive of more injury to the country. He could not refrain from expressing the great satisfaction he had felt at hearing the clear, dignified, and Statesmanlike speech of his noble friend, the President of the Board of Trade, whom he must congratulate on that change in his Majesty's Councils, which had enabled him to devote his great abilities to the service of his country. At the same time, while he admitted the Statesman-like view, and expressed his conviction that no one sympathized more sincerely with the distresses of the petitioners, he must differ from him as to the inference he drew, for it was in consequence of what had fallen from his noble friend, that he felt it right to support the Motion. His noble friend admitted the distress of the glove-trade, but, at the same time, said, he did not see his way to a legislative remedy. His noble friend did not think that those distresses arose from legislative enactments, and apprehended that, by granting this Committee, the manufacturers would suppose that a return to the prohibitory system might take place, which his noble friend thought would be injurious, not only to other trades, but to the glove manufacturers themselves. His noble friend who made the Motion, differed in opinion very materially with his noble friend, the President of the Board of Trade, as to the cause of this distress. His noble friend, who proposed the Committee, imagined that these distresses arose from legislative enactments, while his noble friend who opposed the Motion thought—and he was inclined to concur in that opinion—that these distresses were more properly attributable to a change of fashion, or other extrinsic circumstances, over which no legislative enactment could exercise any control. That circumstance convinced him that it would be productive of general benefit to grant this Committee; because that would show to the manufacturers of England, that much of that distress which is now, and has been at various times complained of, was neither the result of the acts, nor arose from the negligence, of the Legislature. He was satisfied that no Government, however perfect, or wise, could exercise any control in this respect. Our dependence on foreign supply and demand, must occasionally cause distress, which it was impossible that any conduct of political men could prevent or relieve. He believed that from day to day we were proceeding further and further in that course which rendered the relief of the distresses of the country less and less dependent on any measure of legislation enactments. The distress arose from the increased amount of population, from the situation and circumstances of foreign countries, as they connected themselves with the trade of Great Britain, and from the conflicting interests of the manufactures of this and other countries. It was from these causes that the distress arose, and it was impossible that any measure of the Government could control them. Such being his opinion, he was very desirous that an opportunity should be afforded of investigating the real facts of the case, as regarded this particular branch of trade, before a Committee, whereby the truth might be elicited, and a legislative measure, if such should be required, prepared. At all events, that would show the petitioners the real cause of their distress; would evince a sympathy in that distress, and an inclination to attend to their demands, so far as justice, reason, and sound policy, should dictate. If this were a question which affected the interests of persons in other parts of the country, that might be a reason why without some reasonable probability of being enabled to afford relief, a Committee should not be appointed; but this trade being extremely limited, an inquiry might be easily and speedily completed. Something had fallen from his noble friend, the President of the Board of Trade, and from the noble Marquis behind him, on the subject of free-trade. He, however, was not prepared to enter into the consideration of that question, but he would say, that it was essential for the important interests of every State, that it should protect, in every possible manner, such manufactures as are essential to national security and independence. The Legislature had been led by the advice of able men to depart from the previous policy of this country in respect of a system of prohibition, and we were wise in so doing; but he must express his deep regret that the example had not been followed by other countries. At the same time, he felt satisfied that, depending as we did upon the admission of our manufactures into foreign countries for the support and employment of a large proportion of our population, nothing could be worse, nothing could be more inimical to our commercial prosperity, and to the internal tranquillity of the country, which so much depended upon our commerce, than the notion getting abroad amongst foreign nations, that we intended at all to retrace our steps, and to go back to that old prohibitory system from which those wise deviations had been made.

Earl Grey

did not feel it necessary to address their Lordships at any length on this subject, after the satisfactory speech which they had heard from his noble friend the President of the Board of Trade. He cordially concurred in the sentiment which had fallen from the noble Baron opposite, and he thought with him that, depending as the prosperity and internal tranquillity of the country so much did, upon our commerce and our intercourse with foreign nations, nothing would be more injurious to both than the idea getting abroad that we had any intention of departing from those principles which, of late years, had been so wisely applied to the trade of this country. He should not go into the discussion of those principles now; but this he would say, that as far as they had been acted upon, they had been wisely and beneficially acted upon; and he believed it would be found that their application had proved highly advantageous to the commercial and general interests of the country at large. In stating that, however, he begged to add, that he was not one of those who would act upon such principles without due caution, and without a careful attention to those complicated interests and that state of society which existed in this country, and which might render it impossible to do in all cases that which one might wish to effect. Always assuming those principles abstractly considered to be founded upon justice, and upon reasoning which could not be refuted, he must, at the same time, as a practical Statesman, in this, as in other cases, take into account the various and complicated interests of the country, in regulating the application of such principles. It was true, as the noble Duke had stated, that it had been the practice of this country to protect its manufactures; and with regard to the principle of protecting them to a certain extent, he thought with the noble Duke that it would be inexpedient to depart from it. The amount of that protection must, however, depend on the way in which it operated on trade itself, and the principle of free-trade was only to see how far, without injuring the manufactures of the coun- try, those principles might be introduced for the general good, improvement, and benefit of the country. With regard to the Motion immediately before the House, he must disclaim the appeal which the noble Viscount, who had introduced that Motion, had made to the right reverend Bench, putting this question to them as a question of Christian charity, and thereby insinuating that those who opposed it would oppose the interests of charity, and would be destitute of sympathy for the distresses under which the petitioners laboured. Those who opposed the Motion of the noble Viscount, felt as much sympathy as he could feel for that distress, and as great an anxiety to relieve it; but he must deny that, in a case of this kind, the vote which they were called upon to give, ought to depend on a matter of feeling. While he sympathised with the distress of which the petitioners complained, he should oppose the appointment of a Committee, because he did not see that any practical good would result from its labours. Had any one stated how, in any view, or in any respect, the labours of such a Committee would contribute to the advantage and benefit of those parties who called for it? The noble Viscount stated that he was inimical to the principle of prohibition, and yet the great majority of the petitions presented called for nothing else but prohibition. The noble Duke concluded his speech by saying, that he had no hope that any good could be effected. The noble Baron also stated that he had no expectation that any practical good would result from the investigation. On what account, then, was the matter to go to a Committee?—Simply because the noble Viscount and noble Lords said there were conflicting statements, and therefore a Committee was necessary in order to ascertain which of these statements was correct. He had always thought the general policy of Parliament to be, not to institute an inquiry unless with a view to lead to some beneficial result; and, as such a result was not to be expected in this instance, it was expedient to refuse the appointment of a Committee. His noble friend had stated to their Lordships the real causes of the distress complained of; and he agreed with him, that the more general use of cotton gloves had been one of the great causes of that distress. It appeared to him that the persons who were suffering under that distress were as likely to be satisfied by the decision of the House that evening, founded as it would be on the reasoning of his noble friend, and on the proofs which he had ad- duced in support of his position, as by the labours of any Committee of Inquiry, if such were appointed—which, in all probability, could do nothing more than confirm the statements he had made. The noble Duke had instanced the appointment of the Wool Committee; but he added, that he objected to its appointment at the time, on the ground that it would lead to no beneficial result, which was afterwards proved to be the fact. With regard to the Coal Committee, its inquiries were not limited to the duty on the coal, but were extended to the regulation of the trade in various parts of the country. As to the Silk Committee, it had been granted because there was a doubt on the subject, and because a hope existed that, after its inquiries, some new regulations might be made which would prove beneficial to that trade. But, in the present instance, the distress which was complained of arose from causes which there was no reason to think that the House could remedy or remove by any legislative inquiry or proceeding. As the remedy of prohibition for which the petitioners called was unadvisable, and, he would say, impossible, there could not be any advantage whatever derived from going into Committee under such circumstances. The granting of a Committee would lead to that suspense which, in commercial matters, it was most desirable to avoid. In the present instance it could only tend to excite hopes which could never be realized; for he was perfectly satisfied that there was no human prospect of any relief being afforded by the adoption of such a proceeding. He had mentioned the reasons which induced the Government to assent to the appointment of the Committee on the silk trade, and he understood that the appointment of that Committee had led to, and already produced, some of those inconveniences in that trade which the appointment of a Committee was always sure to occasion. Under all the circumstances of this case, feeling and deploring as he did the distress and privations to which these petitioners were subjected, he trusted they would see that, in rejecting the prayer of their petitions, the House of Lords did not do so from a want of sympathy with their sufferings, but from a full conviction that the evils of which they complained were beyond the reach of a legislative remedy. He did trust, therefore, that the House would not consider it expedient to consent to this Motion.

Viscount Strangford

should not trouble the House at any length, though he did not think that it would be difficult to meet every one of the arguments used against him by noble Lords opposite; but of some statements made by them he would take a brief notice. He would begin with his noble relative (the noble Marquis), not because he thought his noble relative's arguments at all entitled to any priority of attention, but simply because he was his noble relative, and that he held it right for every man to endeavour to provide for his own relations first. He would begin with what was personal to himself. His noble relative accused him of wearing French gloves. He denied the charge. Those he wore were English; and he hoped his noble friend would show his patriotism by buying some at the same place. The noble Marquis called him the Representative of the Glovers of England. He was proud of the honour; and, as their Representative, he disclaimed the idea of looking to a return to prohibition as the sole and necessary result of the labours of a Committee. The glovers themselves might, in the first instance, and in their petitions, have asked for prohibition, because it seemed to them to be the simplest and shortest remedy for the evils of which they complained. But it must not be forgotten that what he—their Representative, as the noble Marquis called him—asked for that night, was not prohibition, but inquiry, in the belief, which many of those whom he represented shared with him, that abler and better heads than his or theirs might strike out some plan of relief short of total prohibition, to which, he again said, he was not prepared to accede. The noble Baron had come down upon him with an array of figures. He did not dispute the accuracy of the noble Baron's figures. They might be as correct as the calculations of the great Archytas, Lieutenant Drummond, himself, for aught he knew; but he had just as good a right to claim credit for the accuracy of his own figures. It was, after all, a matter of assertion on both sides, and in that state it ought not to be left. He had heard from the noble Baron many reasons why it was proper and judicious to grant a Committee in the case of the silk trade; but he had not heard one why it was not proper and judicious to grant one in the case of the glove trade. The noble Baron dwelt much on the increased importation of skins. Did the noble Baron mean, that these skins were all made into gloves? There were many other uses to which they were applied. But he was, moreover, fully prepared to shew, that the increased quantity of imported skins—the surplus beyond the quantity imported in the preceding year—was so far from being worked up, that it was actually lying in stock, or in the brokers' hands, and likely to remain there. Again, the noble Baron talked of the increased quantities manufactured. He should remember, that increased production, in any branch of manufacture, proved nothing unless accompanied with a remunerating rate of wages. This had not been the case in the glove trade. The workmen were upon half-wages, and not always upon that. With respect to what are termed Berlin gloves, he begged leave to say that, whatever effect the introduction of that article might have had on the consumption of the oil-leather or beaver gloves, chiefly made at Woodstock and Worcester, it could have had no effect on those made at Yeovil and other places. Those gloves, the Berlin sort, were men's gloves; and the Yeovil gloves were principally, if not solely, ladies' gloves, or gloves of the finer sort. To say, therefore, that the increased production of these coarse gloves had driven the finer sort out of the market, and out of use, was like saying that an increase in the number of waggon-builders was injurious to the coachmakers, and would put coaches and chariots out of fashion. Noble Lords said, that we should take a warning from France. He thought so too. He thought that we might also, in some degree, take a lesson from her, as far as protection to the native manufacturer was concerned. When noble Lords talked of the ill effects of prohibition and protection, he besought them to look at the United States of America, where protection, almost amounting to prohibition, was rigidly enforced. He had now before him documents which would enable him to answer every statement of the noble Lord, the Vice-President of the Board of Trade; but he felt that it would be a waste of their Lordships' time to produce them now. Their value could only be ascertained in a Committee, to which he was still so desirous of referring them, that he was resolved to take the sense of the House on his Motion, even though he should go alone below the Bar.

The House divided: Not Contents 41; Contents 33—Majority 8.

DUKES Lansdowne
Norfolk Queensberry
Richmond EARLS
Cleveland Radnor
Mulgrave Dover
Grey Mendip (Viscount Clifden)
Lichfield Wellesley (Marquis Wellesley)
Tankerville Plunkett
Amherst Poltimore
Chichester Dinorben
Killaloe King
VISCOUNT Fife (Earl of Fife)
Hood Fingall (Earl of Fingall)
Sundridge (Duke of Argyll) Holland
Howard of Effingham
Ponsonby Chaworth (Earl of Meath)
Melbourne (Viscount Melbourne)
Somerhill (Marquis of Clanricarde)
Sefton (Earl of Sefton) Panmure
Monteagle (Marquis of Sligo) TELLER.
Lord Auckland
List of the CONTENTS.
DUKES Redesdale
Cumberland Clanbrassil (Earl of Roden)
Northumberland Saltoun
Salisbury Tadcaster (Marquis Thomond)
EARLS Monson
Coventry Ellenborough
Vane (Marquis of Londonderry) Clanwilliam (Earl of Clanwilliam)
Charleville Ravensworth
Bathurst Rochester
Falmouth Bath and Wells
Verulam Bangor
Jersey Carlisle
Beresford Litchfield and Coventry
Gordon (Earl of Aberdeen)
Penshurst (Viscount Strangford) Lord Kenyon