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failed. At length Captain Manby brought his mortar down from his residence to the coast, and succeeded in throwing a line over the ship, by which all the poor fellow's were saved. Having thus given practical proof of what could be effected, Manby was instrumental in causing many mortars to be so applied on the coast. He frequently tried to obtain some recognition of his services from the Government; and in this matter he was more fortunate than many useful discoverers. He was unquestionably the means whereby the attention of the Legislature was drawn to the subject of wrecks and life-saving apparatus ; and when he died at a venerable age in 1854, he left behind him a name worthy of the gratitude of society.
It is believed that not less than one thousand lives have been saved by means of the ropes thrown out to stranded ships, through the agency of mortar-rockets. There are about one hundred and seventy places, on the shores of the United Kingdom, where such apparatus is kept, mostly under the charge of the Coast Guard, who, from the peculiar nature of their other duties, are well adapted for this kind of service.
The articles transmitted to the Paris Exhibition of 1855, by the Life-Boat Institution, may be taken as a test of the present state of the arts applied to this kind of construction ; for it is to be supposed that the Institution would be conversant with the latest practicable improvements. The first was a model life-boat and carriage, as now adopted by the Institution, and stationed on many parts of our coasts; the boat, invented by Mr. Peake, of Woolwich Dockyard, and made by Messrs. Forrestt, of Limehouse, is 30 feet long, 7. feet wide, and 3 feet deep; it is considered to possess, in a high degree, seven qualities required in a life-boat-lateral stability, speed against a heavy sea, facility in launching and beaching, quick self-discharge of water, the power of self-righting if upset, great strength, and stowageroom for a number of passengers. Another specimen, was the lifeboat which gained for Mr. Beeching, of Yarmouth, the Northumberland prize; it is a little longer and wider than Mr. Peake's, but not quite so deep. A third was Mr. Palmer's life-boat, employed for many years by the Society, and stationed at many points on the coast of France. A fourth was Mr. Ward Jackson's life-boat, such as is stationed at the West Hartlepool Docks. Besides these boats there were several minor articles, such as travelling life-buoys, to be used with the rocket and mortar apparatus ; cork life-belts and lifebuoys; and so forth.
We have now to notice the recent law, concerning shipwrecks. The year 1854 gave strength to the cause, by bringing the power of the Government to bear upon it, -not that such strengthening is necessarily a result; for the right man’ is not always in the right place,' nor do the Government departments always do the right thing at the right time ; but it seems especially fitting that the legislature, and through it the executive, should have a voice in the shipping economy of a maritime nation. Mr. Cardwell brought in and carried a Bill “ To Amend and Consolidate the Acts relating to Merchant Shipping ;" it constitutes the Act 17 & 18 Vict. cap. 104, and reçeived the Royal assent August 10, 1854. The statute is of great
length, and relates to eleven different topics, bearing upon the wellbeing of sailors and their ships,-the relation of the Board of Trade to the Commercial Marine; the ownership, measurenient, and register of British merchant ships; the qualifications of masters and seamen ; the precautions for safety on ship-board ; the arrangements concerning pilots; the management and tolls of lighthouses ; the constitution of the Mercantile Marine Fund; the laws relating to wrecks, casualties, and salvage; the liabilities of ship-owners; legal course of procedure in the event of misdemeanor; and miscellaneous details. Inspectors of merchant-ships, and investigators in respect to wrecks and accidents, are to be appointed by the Board of Trade; new examinations for masters and mates are to be organized, separating “ foreign-going ships” from “ home-trade passenger ships;" the Board is empowered to suspend certificates to masters and mates, in case of misconduct or inefficiency; Naval Courts are to be instituted abroad or on the high seas, in correspondence with the Board, to inquire into cases of wreck or abandonment of ships; the number and size of the boats to accompany all trading-ships are denoted; every ship carrying more than ten passengers must be provided with a life-boat, or an ordinary boat rendered buoyant, and with two lifebuoys—the boat and buoys being always kept ready for use ; lights and fog-signals are to be used, such as may be suggested by the Admiralty; iron-steamers must have water-tight compartments, and safety-valves beyond the control of the engineer; sea-going ships must be provided with fire-engines and hose, signal-guns, and ammunition for firing signals of distress.
Besides the provision for preventing wreck, the Act contains many clauses, applying to cases in which wreck may unhappily hare occurred. As these arrangements are somewhat peculiar, it may be well to notice them a little closely. All matters relating to wreck are placed under the general superintendence of the Board of Trade, by whom“ Receivers of Wreck ” are to be appointed. These receivers will have the chief command and authority over all persons present at any wreck, or similar casualty, and power to issue such directions as may seem expedient for the preservation of life and property, or for the prevention of plunder and disorder. Whenever a ship is stranded, or otherwise in distress on British shores, bystanders are to be encouraged to render assistance, by having a pccuniary interest in the preservation of life or property. If services, so rendered, shall be instrumental towards the object in view, the persons shall have a claim on the owner of the ship for a “ reasonable amount of salvage.” Numerous directions are given, for ascertaining what would be a "reasonable amount" in each case ; for enforcing the claim of the salvor against the distrainer; for disposing of an unclaimed wreck; and for adding to the salvor's reward out of the Mercantile Marine Fund, in cases where life has been preserved, and where the wrecked ship is insufficient in value to pay the salvage awarded. The “ Mercantile Marine Fund” here adverted to, is made up in a curious way; it consists of certain fees received by the Board of Trade, for examinations and registries connected with merchant-ships ; lighthouse dues accruing by virtue of certain sec
fons of tbe Act; rates scoring from lastage and balastage in the Thames; ad fees derived through the Receivers of Wreck. The Frad, kept with Ha Majesty's Patsaster-General, is to be applied in parteat of the salates of ensibers surveyors, receivers, &c.; expenses in regard to Ega thouses, boors, beacoes, lastage, ballastage, life-boats, &e.; and rewaris to persuas bo assist in saving wrecked ships, or crews, or passengers.
In pursuance of the powers conferred by the statute abore sketched, the Board of Trade proceeded, early in 1855, to gire effect to its provisions. Among other steps, the Board addressed a Circular to all the Life-boat Committees throughout the Cnited Kingdom. Considering that, in 1854, no fewer than 1,5-40 persons perished from wrecks on our own coasts, it is not too much to say that a wide field is yet open to the exertions of individual bumanity and bravery. Doubtless, many of those persoas might have been rescued, had there been life-boats and willing aiders at the places where the calamities occurred. The principle intended by the Act, and intrusted to the Board of Trade for realization, is not to supersede local exertion, but to support it-to - help those who will help themselves.” A preparatory Circular was addressed to the several Life-boat Committees in September, 1854, and this was followed by another in February, 1855. The Circular dwelt strongly on the fact, that the Board would insist on evidence of local activity before sanctioning grants out of the Mercantile Marine Fund, “In the wealthier and more populous portions of the kingdom, my Lords anticipate that the public spirit of the neighbourhood will supersede the necessity of recurrence to this Board for aid. In cases where a necessity for such assistance exists, the assistance contemplated by the Board of Trade will be confined to assisting towards the manning and exercise of boats, and towards defraying expenses connected with actual service rendered in saving, or endeavouring to save, life from shipwreck. The construction and maintenance of boats and boat-houses will, my Lords anticipate, be provided for as heretofore by funds voluntarily raised. My Lords have entered into correspondence with the National Life-boat Institution, which offers many advantages to local Committees in correspondence with it, and they propose also to communicate from time to time with any Local Committee which may desire to address their communications directly to this department."
The principal arrangements marked out in the Circular may be condensed as follows. Every Life-boat Committee must have as one of its members an officer of the Coast-guard, or of the Customs, or some official person connected with the Board of Trade. The Local Committee must be provided with a boat and boat-house satisfactory to the Board. The boats, houses, and gear, must be kept in efficient repair, and accessible to the Inspector appointed by the Board. Each boat must have a coxswain, and a crew at least one-half more than is necessary to man the boat; permanent, if possible. The coxswain is to receive a small salary, and he, as well as the crew, Ye to receive certain specified rewards as payments for each time of
cising (once a-quarter at the least), each time of launching to
assist a wreck, and each time of undergoing special danger or fatigue. In the event of the death of any of the crew while on service, the Board will contribute towards a fund for the widow. All the payments are in the first instance to be made by the Local Committees, but to be repaid by the Board of Trade when satisfactorily tested. Signal rockets and mortar apparatus on the coast are to remain under the charge of the Coast-guard.
The Life-boat Institution, to further the object held in view by the Board of Trade, also issued a Circular to the Local Life-boat Committees, containing advice and suggestions couched in more familiar language than a Government department is accustomed to employ. One extract will suffice to explain in some degree the mode in which men are induced to tender their services in the hazardous duty of manning a life-boat. Speaking of the remuneration promised by the Board of Trade, the Circular says :“The scale of payment for services in saving life is greater than has ever before been paid, and is calculated to give every encouragement to seamen who engage in such an honourable and humane, yet often perilous, service. They conceive that the chief point in connexion with it, which will call for the attention of the Local Committees, will be to exercise a careful and wise discretion in recommending the higher awards for extraordinary services; taking care never to do so but for those of a really distinguished character. The quarterly exercise of the life-boat should never be omitted. If, as may happen in the summer months, rough weather does not occur, the crew may still, with advantage, be exercised in rowing together, and the sound and tight condition of the boat herself, and the perfectness of her gear and fittings, ascertained ; and if, from any cause, the greater part of her ordinary crew are absent, she had, nevertheless, better be taken afloat by any other of the seamen of the port who may be obtained, but always, if possible, in charge of the permanent coxswain of the boat. The salary of the coxswain is double that which has previously been paid by this institution. In return, it will be expected that they shall devote the more time and attention to preserving the boats and their appurtenances, under their care, in a constant state of efficiency, and ready for instant service. With regard to the hire of horses or steam-tugs, and the payment of persons to assist in launching and hauling up life-boats, the attention of the Local Committees will here also be chiefly required to check undue charges and to avoid incurring such expenses, except when necessary. It is thought, also, that they may do much good by endeavouring at all times to encourage public spirit, and other disinterested motives, in those who are called upon to assist on such occasions, and, as far as possible, to divest such services of a mercenary character.”
Unless all reasonable anticipations be belied, the recent statute, when its several provisions shall have been brought fully into working order by the Board of Trade and other bodies, will surely lessen the number of wrecks, and of lives lost by wrecks, on the British shores.
IV.-REORGANIZATION OF THE CIVIL SERVICE.
Amidst all the excitement and anxiety of the war, there was one question of domestic policy--and a most unwonted one-which, during the first half of 1855, very largely occupied the public mind. We need hardly say that we refer to Administrative Reform. It was, however, commonly regarded less as a distinct subject than as a part of the all-absorbing question of the conduct of the war. Yet it had an independent and previous existence. Though new as a question of public and popular interest, it was by no means a novelty to the initiated. Members of successive governments, many of the more eminent officers of the public service, and a growing body of public men, had for some years been convinced of the need of reforming the administrative departments, and had devoted much considera. tion to the best means of effecting the necessary modification or reorganization. But it was quite time-apart altogether from what called forth the prevailing irritation-that the public attention should be directed to the question ; for the only security for any thorough, comprehensive, and permanent administrative reform, lies in an enlightened public opinion being brought to bear on the subject, and so preventing the adoption of any partial, incomplete, and unsatisfactory compromise, which would, in all probability, permit matters gradually to fall back into something like their former state. What Mr. Gladstone-who on such a point is a weighty authority-said in his speech on Mr. Layard's motion on Administrative Reformi, deserves to be remembered :-" The subject is one to which I rejoice to see the public mind heartily turned, because you must recollect, that with regard to the public service of the country, you have unfailingly at work a set of motives and engines which are unfavourable to the public interest. The principle of nepotism, of promotion by family interest, of jobbing for constituents, and the pursuits of self-interest, are perpetual, whereas it is only occasionally that the public mind is turned to the question of the organization of the public service. If, therefore, the feeling which has been avowed in the country can be turned into channels of a practical nature, I am convinced that great good will result."
To assist in dispersing the vagueness and generality, which have been complained of as characterising so much of what has been spoken and written on this subject, and to aid in giving a practical turn to the movement, we propose to consider the more important branch of governmental administration—the Civil Service; to lay before our readers a brief statement of what, up to the commencement of 1855, was its condition, and of what has been since done towards amending it; and then to examine with similar brevity, the propositions which have been made for bringing it into a more perfect state.
The Civil Service numbers some sixteen or seventeen thousand employés. These form the permanent corps, who, in their respective departments, execute the behests of their political chiefs-the Government of Great Britain. They are, in fact, the working ma