« AnteriorContinuar »
three years old, and others which provide midwives and medicines gratuitously at their own houses. The oldest of these establishments boast of having delivered 50,000 women, and it appears from the reports, that the eleven deliver from 4000 to 5000 poor women, annually. No comment is required on the great value of such charities, nor can any persuasion be requisite to induce the opulent, particularly of the fair sex, from contributing liberally to their support.
A considerable convenience is experienced by the opulent, in the constant supply of healthy wet-nurses afforded by these establishments, on application being made to the physician or matron.
The British Lying-in Hospital, for married women, Brownlow Street, instituted 1749.
The City of London Lying-in Hospital, City Road, instiuted, 1750.
The Queen's Lying-in Hospital, instituted 1752.
The General Lying-in Hospital, Lisson Green, 1752. The Lying-in Charity, for the delivery of poor married women at their own habitations, Cock Court, Ludgate Hill, 1757.
The Westminster Lying-in Hospital, near the Bridge, 1765, all on similar plans, and supported by voluntary subscription, of which they are most worthy.
The Middlesex Hospital, whose medical men attend married women at their own houses.
The General Lying-in Dispensary, Charlotte Street, Rathbone Place, for married women at their own houses, instituted 1778.
Eastern Dispensary, Great Alie Street, for the same purpose, 1782.
The Benevolent Institution for the same purpose, employing 40 midwives.
The Lying-in Charity, for the wives of the foot-guards, Panton Street, 1801.
Magdalen Hospital in St. George's Fields.
The object of this charity is the relief and reformation of wretched outcasts from society: and the principal on
which it is founded, gives it a strong title to the countenance and favour of the public, and particularly of the female sex.
The Magdalen Hospital was opened in the year 1758. During the period that it has subsisted, more than twothirds of the women who have been admitted have been reconciled to their friends, or placed in honest employments, or repntable services. A very considerable number have since been married, and are at this moment respectable members of society; and could their names and situations be disclosed, the great utility of this charity would appear in the strongest light.
The time they remain in the house varies, according to circumstances. The greatest pains are taken to find out their relations and friends, to bring about a reconciliation with them; and if they be people of character, to put them under their protection. If, however, the young women are destitute of such friends, they are retained in the house till an opportunity offers of placing them in a reputable service, or of procuring them the means of obtaining an honest livelihood. No young woman who has behaved well during her stay in the house is discharged unprovided for. When discharged, they are for the most part under twenty years of age.
The committee, consisting of thirty-two governors, meet at the hospital every Thursday, at twelve o'clock precisely, except on the first Thursday of every month, when they meet at eleven; and two of them, in rotation, attend at the chapel every Sunday, at morning and evening service, when a collection is made previously to admission. The hours of divine service are a quarter after eleven in the forenoon, and a quarter after six in the evening; and, on account of the fascination of the singing, no place of worship in the metropolis is more worthy of the notice of a stranger.
Companies who wish to visit this charity, may be ad◄ mitted, on addressing their request by letter to the committee any Thursday; or to the treasurer, A. Bonnet, Esq. upon any day in the week.-No fees are taken.
There is also the London Female Penitentiary, at Pen
tonville, conducted by a commitee of 64 ladies, and a very excellent institution.
The asylum for female orphans, is situated in St. George's Fields, the corner of the road which leads from Westminster bridge towards Vauxhall. It was institued after the Magdalen, and as the latter was intended to reclaim prostitutes, this was intended to prevent prostitution.
The charity is commendable, as affording maintenance and education to a number of poor and distressed children. The guardians or subscribers present in turn, as often as vacancies occur, and the children are taken in at about the age of nine, and at fourteen apprenticed to trades, or engaged as domestic servants.
The institution is supported by voluntary contributions, and by collections made at the chapel doors on Sundays. The Marine Society.
This excellent establishment commenced in 1756, and was incorporated in 1772. Its object is to fit out landmen volunteers, to serve and become seamen on board the king's ships in the time of war, and for equipping distressed boys for sea at all times. Whether the institution is considered as a feature of well-regulated police, or as a nursery for seamen, its advantages are strikingly evident, and entitle it to the warmest support of the benevolent. The number of men and boys the society have cloathed during the late war, is upwards of 30,000.
The society, in addition to their former establishment, have provided a ship large enough to receive 100 boys, which lies moored between Deptford and Greenwich, with proper officers to instruct the boys in nautical and moral duties; this ship is called the Thorn, and her commanding officer is always happy to shew the vessel to strangers. An annual visitation of the governors takes place on board, about the 19th of May, when the attendance of friends to the institution is esteemed a favour, and will well repay curiosity. Mr. Newby, the secretary, at the office in Bishopsgate Street, is attentive and polite to all enquirers, and will shew strangers every department under his care.
School for the indigent Blind, Obelisk, St. George's Fields. In this interesting institution, the most benevolent attention is paid to twenty-one boys and fourteen girls, under the unhappy circumstances of blindness and poverty. They manufacture baskets, clothes' lines, and sash cords, which are sold at the school, where strangers are permitted (gratis) to view the progress of the pupils, and to examine the nature of the institution.
Society for the Relief aud Discharge of Persons confined for small Debts, Cruven Street, Strand.
The liberal views of this society, instituted in 1772, were soon seconded by the public, for within fifteen months from the commencement of the plan, they were enabled to discharge 900 prisoners, many of whom were confined only for their fees! to these belonged wives and children, making in the whole a vast number essentially relieved by means of public humanity.
Manufacturers, seamen, and labourers, were chiefly among those whose usefulness, long cut off from exercise by confinement, was thus restored to the community. Debtors who desire to partake of this charity, must apply by printed petition only, which may be had of the respective keepers, gratis.
The Society for Bettering the Condition of the Poor, Piccadilly.
This Society was instituted in 1796. Its object is to embrace every thing that concerns the happiness of the poor; to remove the difficulties attending parochial relief, and the discouragement of industry and economy, by the present mode of distributing it; to correct the abuses of work-houses; and to assist the poor in placing out their children in the world; in the improvement of their habitations, gardens, the use of fuel, and other beneficent purposes.
The following are the subjects of information upon which the society is desirous of obtaining and circulating information. 1. Parish relief; 2. Friendly societies; 3. Parish work-houses; 4. Cottages; 5. Cottage
Gardens; 6. Parish mills; 7. Village shops; 8. Village kitchens; 9. Fuel and fire places; 10. Apprentices; 11. County gaols; 12. Beggars.
Upon all these topics, and others connected with them, the reports of this society (published in numbers) speak amply, and present a body of knowledge at once practical, interesting, and important, highly to the credit of the promoters of this institution.
Philanthropic Society, St. George's Fields.
The great object of this society, instituted in 1788, is to unite the purposes of charity with those of industry, and police; to rescue from destruction the offspring of the vicious and criminal.
They have at present 160 children, male and female: many of these have been taken from prisons, and others have been rescued from the retreats of villany, and the haunts of prostitution. For their employment, buildings are erected, in which, under the direction of master workmen, various trades are carried on; and the girls are bred up to work at their needle, and to do those household offices, which render them serviceable, to the community, and enable them to obtain an honest living. The whole number of children of both sexes, that have been received by the society, amount to upwards of 1100; among whom were many, though young in years yet old in iniquity.
The society has, for the reception of the children, taken under its care a house at Bermondsey, called, "The Re form," and a large manufactory in St. George's-fields for the boys, in which letter-press and copper-plate printing, book-binding, shoe-making, tailors' work, rope-making and twine-spinning, are carried on. Adjoining the manufactory is a spacious building for the girls.
The Humane Society.
Among the singularly benevolent plans which have within a few years arisen in this vast metropolis, is this society, commencing its operations where all others leave the objects of their care. Since its first establishment, in 1774, nearly 3000 lives have been restored from apparent