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to retain it. This increase of price this as a rule to settle any dispute, would be very irconsiderable, and in case the wheat delivered under would be much less than the value a particular sample, should prove of the time, which would be lighter than the bushel or sack thrown away by the purchaser registered with the clerk of the waiting in the market, or his loss market. by his ignorance of the quality of I will only add, that from every the commodity.

conversation which I have had with What I have said respecting farmers, mealmen and millers, since millers, appears to me to be most this subject was brought forward, necessary to do away the present I am convinced that the use of opinion, that the high price of weight, as the regulator of measure, four is in come degree owing to will prevent fraud in dealings in the millers or mealmen: but as a corn, and will enable the magis. Te pectable baronet has brought grates or others, to regulate the forward a bill on this subject, the price of bread by the average price Jesolutions contained in my letter of wheat or four, instead of being Jespecting millers may be rendered fixed by the highest price of wheat, unnecessary, except in drawing as it is at present. the attention of the country to the

C. D. consideration of these subjects, Extrait of a Letter from Mr. Davies, which I hope will be the corse- to William Morton Pitt, Esq. quence of the attention which has

Longleat, Nov.22, 1795: been paid by the committee to in. YOUR question--"Whether i qoire into the causes of the high be possible cr proper that farmers, price of corn.

who sell their com by sample, A table, like the following, should be obliged to bring the might regulate the prices of a mar. whole or a certain quantity oi it to ket, as far as related to the quantitymarket !"--involves so many obu. and weight.

jects of consideration, that I must

big your ieave not only to give any Ib. 1b.

1. el. opinion, but to state my reasons af 60 or 59

some length; the subject is a 58 57

6 serious one, and I trust you will 56 55

6 not chick me more prolix than it 53

6 requires. 51

The difficulties in reducing this 49

7 6 plan to practice seems to be these :

156. The infrequency of market Thus il. 10s. per load difference towns in many parts of the kingwould be made in the price, where dom, and the distance from those 281b. per sack was the difference towns to the places where.com is in weight, which would be five consumed. half hundreds in a load of wheat,

2d. The increased expence, of

" which is the exact weight of a carrying.com to inarkets; and sack of four, and which the then, in many instances, bringing best wheat would produce · more it back again to he consunied near than the lightest.--I have added the spot where it gtew.

3d. The

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3. The impolicy, if not injustice, formation ; viz, at the junction of of restraining, by coinpulsive means, the coontry which produces corn, the sale of an article, which, how. with i he country which consumes it, ever indispensable in itscif, has as within five miles of the great corn fair a claim as any other article of narket of Warminster. trade to a free and voluntary mode From Warminster, for near forty of sale ; especially an article of which miles eastward, through Wilts and the growth is optional on the part Hanis, is a country which does of the seller.

not ccnsuine one fourih part of the 4. The absolute iinpossibility of corn it grows.-From Warminster securing a constant uniforin sup- for near forty miles westward, ply on every market day, sufliciunt through a great part of Somerset. for the consumption of the district shire, and including Bath and Brisd.pendant on that market, till the tol, is a country which does not next market day.

preluce one fourth part of the corn The above are my doub:s as to it consumes. the practicability, or even the possi. The other three fourths of corn bility of carrying a plan or this kind consumed in the latter district is into effect. My opinion is, that brought chiefly from the former it can do but little good, and inay (for the increased population of do a great deal of harm; and I take the north has defirived Bristol of the liberty of supporting ebat opi. the resource it once had down the nion by the following reasons. Severn). Warminster and Devizes :

The present, and indeed every are the principal markets by which scarcity of corn, arises chiefly from this quantity is supplied. From a failure of crops.

these towns to Bristol and Bridge. ' That failure must be compen. water, there is not a market where sated to the gro:ver (who is obliged corn is exposed for sale in bulk. to pay the same rent in all seasons) But would it be politic to compel by an increased price.-That price the growers of this one-fourth part is always regulaied by the demand. of ihe consumption of Somerset. -The great de citerolum is to keep shire to bring it to Warminster the dem.nd and the supply as nearly or Devizes, or to Bridgewater ci regular as possible. The proposal Bristol, to sell it, to be carried back now made to the committe has again to be consumed by the that end ter its object. I have, manufacturing towns of Frome or with all deference, to prove that it Shepton Mallett, possibly within a is inadequate.

se: niles of the place of its growth, I live in a situation mose likely at an advanced price, occasioned by to furnish me with the means of ini. this useless carriage* ? I may be

• The proposal made in the committee, of obliging farmers to bring at least a sack of corn to market as a sample, or even a bushel, is objectionable; the latter quantity, small as it is, caricot be brought ten miles under an expeuce of two shillings, and nobody could buy it at that additional expence, unless they also contracted to take a greater quantity with it to cover that expeace: the poor, for whom it is intended, could never buy it. Besides, in alt manufacturing : countries the poor seldom buy wheat at market, or would if they could; the labour. en in agricukure in the villages buy it of the fariners for whom they work: the manufacturers live from hand to mouth, and buy bread ready baked. Besides, it is seldom reckoned how much a poor man loses in time and expenses ia going Lo market to buy corn, even if he could buy it. You. XXXVII,



asked, why cannot markets be held August. The shortness of the sup. at these towns -- answer, the ply then produced a saving in the establishments of markets are not consumption, and thereby the stock the work of a day;--and surpose in hand lasted out. Suppose we they were established, still that had a wet harvest; in that case would not increase the quantity of the new corn couid not have com grown in that country. The bien ground without an addition of dealers must still go eastward for old. The rich farmers who had three-fourths of their supply, to the wheat left would then have been neglect of their own trifling markets, useful men. The fact speaks for which of course would soon come to itself. nothing again.

As to jobbers of corn, these men The avowed object of the plan may combine together; their num. before the committee is, doubtless, ber is but few, comparatively speak. to defeat a supposed combination ing; but how do they combine? between buyers and sellers of corn not to raise the price of corn, but to keep up its price, and to lay the to sink it! Warminster marker, markeis open to a fair competition; though a sack market, and not a and a very laudable object it is. Í sample market, is in a great mea

а have already stated my doubts as to sure governed by these men ;-and the possibility of carrying this plan were it not for them, Bath and into execution, or indeed any plan Bristol must be fed much dearer that would defeat this kind of com. than they are now. If these men hination; but I have very great cannot get corn at one market they doubes in my own mind as to the go to another, and if there is not existence of combination to the ex. enough at market they go to farm. tent we frequently hear of, and still houses. But when they get to the greater as to the magnitude of the places of consumption, there the injury supposed to be done thereby combination ends, and competition to the public.--I am sensible I am begins ;-less profit will suffice taking the unpopular side of the best men, than the expence that argument.--I Think you will agree would be incurred by ten times the with me in some parts of it at least; numbers of bakers and malesters, and if you do not, I am sure you coming twenty or twenty-five miles will not be offended at diy giving to market. In fact, had it not been my opinion.

for men of this description, Bristol "That a combination should exist would have been starved last sum. among farmers is impossible ;-they mer.--There were instances, more are too numerous, and many of them than once, of that city being with. too necessitous, ever to act in con- out a forinight's supply of com. çert.

*These men knew i:, and ransacked Rich farmers may undoubtedly the country for more. They did it (and this year they have done it) for their own sakes, and thereby keep their wheat from market. In served the community, times of scarcity, like the last But even admitting a combina. months of June and July, it is tion between farmers and jobbers well they did, we should other. to exist in any particular country; wiss have been quite starved in the moment corn gets above the

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brice at which it would bear the wheat; a few farmers, who happen additional expence of carriage ten to have extraordinary good wheat, miles farther, there is an end of make a point of adding two or the combination; and if it was three quarts to the meusure. This possible the whole kingdom could sack of corn, so much better and combine, an importation from any bigger than the average of the country where it could be got market. will frequently sell for cheaper would instantly knock it one fifth more thin inferior sam. up.

In fact, these very men, pies of fair measure in the same though deaiing at all times onder market, This high price, and suspicions; and this year frequently which it is the interest of the in danger of their lives, are the buyer to give, forfs a standard very hands that transtes the pienty of price of bread and four for the of one country to relieve the dis. ensuing week.--No existing laws tresses of another; and though at are adequate to the remedy of this former periods, as well as now, evil, for as neither buyer or seller they have, in times of dearth, been complain, who is to re-measure pointed at as the cause of it, they this corn; though sold in a public have to my knowledge this year market? Besides, there is so much more than once saved whole towns art in measuring corn, that two from famine. In fact, times of people may make several quarts

. scarcity are favourable to this set difference in a sack, and yet both of men. They are then (against appear to measure fair.-If any their will, I allow) particularly remedy can be applied to this evil, useful to all countries who do not it must be a compulsion to sell corn grow corn chough for their con by weight ;--this is done by choice sumption. In times of plenty they at Manchester and Liverpool, and cannot exist to answer their own in this country the buyer always purpose in those times they are asks the weight, though he does not not wanited.

buy by it :-in fact, weight decr. But the great evil which tve in mines ihe quality as well

as the this country feel, and which our quantity. If weight was adopted, great corn markers rather encou. the price would be nearly equal, and fage than prevent, is the inequa. it would then be possible to frame a lity of measures by which corn, fair assize table, which in my opia, and particularly wheat, is sold; I nion is impossible to do from mea. do not speak of the various pro. Sure, especially in such a year as vincial measures. It is immaterial this, when the difference in the price to a country whether eighr, niie, of good and bad wheat is full one or twelve gallons are sold for a third. bushel, provided all parties under. I canrot help thinking, that if stand what the measure is.

this measure was tried a year, it But in this country, in all villages wouid be found 'efficacious. - Ic and small towns, where there is no would do one thing in an in-cant, assize of bread, the baker sells which the legislature has not been his bread and his four at his able to do in a century-" equa: own price, for which he always lize all the various measures in the quo:es the bighest market price of kingdom.""}




Copy of a Leiter from Sir Francis from three to six pounds per Wirid

Basset, Bort. to the Chairman of chester bushel, besides the allow. the Corn Committee.

ance from a pound to a pound and

a half for wastage. In taking toll, Upper Grosvenor-street, the milier by uniform custom, SIR, Dec. 22, 1795 helps himself from the top, which Many complaints having been consists of the best and finest flour, male in diff rent parts of England, It appears then, that the proprie. of the hardships suffised by the tor of an old mill may take such poor from the pre:ent mode of pay. toll as is justified by custom; but ment for grinding corn, and also the owner of a new mill may take of the difficulty of obtaining re- what roll he causes, according to dress, whenever there is a suspicion the opinion of lord Holt, in the that frauds are practised by the case of the King and Burdett: this, millers; I beg leave, through yo!!, probably, is the only existing case to submit to the corn committee a in which a tradesman arbitrarily plan for remedying those supposed fixe's the price of his own labour, grievances.

without acquainting his employes I would propose, in the first what his terins are. place, to alter the present custom of The millers, of course, profess to taking toll, into a uniform payınent to take a fair price for their labour, in money, to be settled by the jus. and could not, therefore, I presume, tices, with respect to all mil's where reasonably object to a regulation, such alterations would rot interfere obliging them to receive a fixed with peculiar' rights established payment in money, instead of an by the courts of law. I further arbitrary and uncertain toll in propose to enable those persons grain ; indeed, if they are who may in future think themselves vinced that the comp'aints alleged aggrieved by millers, to obtain against them are unfounded (as in redress by a summary proceeding many cases they probably are), they before two justices of the peace, would rather rejoice to see a mode instead of being obliged to have of payment adopted, by which al reccurse to so expensive and so jealousies will be avoided in future, tedious a process as

an irdict.. and by which they would receive ment. As the law stands at present, an adequate compensation for the the proprietor of an old miil may labour performed, and the capital rake his accustomed roll; but as employed. The toll, as now taken, that iull is known only to him. is certainly extremely oppressive 'self (for it is rarely avowed to to the poor, who pay the most when his customer), this gives him a coa. they c?n the least afford it; and siderable iacicude, and is a constant if frauds are ever practised by mil. and never failing scorce o: jealousy ters, they are most likely to take to those who employ his. I have place when there is the greatest just said that the customer seldor temptation, that is, when com bears knows what he pays; but in the a high price. - few cases which have come to my li will not be necessary to say knowicdge, where the miller pro. much respecting the preference fesses to take a fixed tell, is varies which a summary proceeding must



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