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western coasts of Great Britain, and some of the ports of Ireland. The river is, however, capable of being rendered navigable for vessels of sufficient magnitude to carry on an intercourse with America and the West Indies, and a subscription has been lately entered into for procuring a regular nautical survey of the channel.
The public foundations of the town are a dispensary ; it was first established in commemoration of the jubilee in October, 1809, the number of in and out patients admitted from its commencement to October, 1819, was 16,045; a house of recovery, established June, 1813, for preventing contagious diseases; the ladies' charity for the relief of pregnant women ; the benevolent society instituted 1812; the catholic charitable society, instituted 1731 ; the vaccine institution ; the almshouses and workhouse which stands upon Preston Moor ; a national school, established in 1815, to which was annexed the blue schools, on the system of Dr. Bell; a catholic school, established in 1814, and a methodist school, also conducted on the new system ; a free grammar school, situated at Syke Hill, for the gratuitous instruction of freemen's sons in classical literature, but which few of the freemen now avail themselves of, and several other minor institutions. The principal market, which is very plentifully supplied, is held every Saturday ; besides which, there are markets for fish and vegetables every Wednesday and Friday; 31 miles from Liverpool, the same distance from Manchester, 22 S. of Lancaster, 15 from Wigan, and 214 N. W. of London.
This town likewise possesses a valuable and extensive library situated in Shepherd street, it was founded by Dr. Richard Shepherd, a physician, who was twice mayor of this borough, and who died 28th November, 1761; he left the interest of 1,0001. for its support and enlargement, to the mayor and aldermen for the time being, who grant tickets of admission thereto during certain hours of the day; but it is to be lamented that this town does not yet possess a public library to which men of business, and especially the rising generation, can have access at their short periods of leisure.
The House of Correction at Preston being the best disciplined
place of the sort in England, the following account of it, by Mr. Nield, in a letter to Dr. Lettsom, was thought worthy of insertion ; it is printed from the original.
“ William Halstead, keeper ; salary 1301. (out of which he
pays per week to a turnkey) and a plot of ground worth 201. per annum.
For the conveyance of prisoners to Lancaster, Wigan, and Ormskirk,
per mile. Chaplain, Rev. Mr. Wray; salary 201. Duty; Sunday morning; prayers and sermon. Surgeon, Mr. Birdsworth; salary 10l. and makes a bill. Task-master, Thomas Houghton; salary 501. and five per cent. on the gross earnings of the prisoners; he has a man to assist him, whom the county allows 12s. a week. Number of prisoners 1st October, 1802, men one hundred and fifteen ; women forty-five; total one hundred and sixty.
Allowance. Every day breakfast and supper : seven ounces of bread, two ounces of oatmeal, one quarter of an ounce of salt, each meal, boiled into gruel. Dinner, Sunday and Thursday, half a pound of beef with the bone, seven ounces of bread each, one pound of potatoes, and water to drink. Monday and Friday, seven ounces of bread each, and one quart of peas with vegetables, to ten pri
soners. Tuesday and Saturday, a stew of cow-head and shins. Wednesday, seven ounces of bread, and four ounces of cheese each.
This prison is a little way out of the town, near the church gate bar ; and is surrounded by a boundary wall, which being at a distance from the prison, the keeper has within it a convenient garden.
On one side the entrance is the turnkey's lodge, on the other is the office of the clerk of the peace. Up-stairs are two reception 'cells, where prisoners are examined before they are admitted into the interior of the prison; there are likewise rooms for the turnkey's family.
family. For prisoners there are six airy courts about twenty-two yards by twelve each ; four of which are for men, and two for women, with water, and a sewer in each. To every court-yard there is a day-room, the average size about five yards square. On the ground floor are eighteen sleeping cells, seven feet six inches, by six feet six inches, with vaulted roofs; there are sixteen other cells, but, being very damp, were not used to put prisoners in. There are likewise on the ground floor forty-eight workshops, in which thirty-one pair of looms were employed when I was there. On the first story are fifty-two sleeping cells, the size of those below; and on the upper story fifty-three. Each cell is fitted up with a wood bedstead, straw in sacking, two or three blankets, and a quilt ; ventilated by an aperture over the door, and an iron grated window opposite. There is an excellent kitchen, fitted up with every convenience for frugal cookery. A room with a bath, in which every prisoner is washed previous to trial. Each prisoner has clean linen every Sunday, and all are required to attend divine service, unless prevented by sickness. The chapel, which is in the centre of the building, has a cupola on the top, and is partitioned so that the men and women cannot see each other. There are two large workrooms up-stairs, in one of which were six pair of looms, and the other is used for batting cotton. Two rooms are set apart for infirmaries ; but, as there were no sick prisoners at my visit, shoemakers and tailors were at work in one of them. The rules and regulations for the government of the prison are conspicuously stuck up in various parts. . The court or session house is within the walls, and convenient passages lead into it for prisoners on trial. Act for preservation of health and clauses against spirituous liquors both hung up ; the prison clean.