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Title: H. Labouchere, Dublin Castle. 7th September 1846, to Lieutenants of Counties.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
Filelabouchere, h/21
SenderLabouchere, H
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationgovernment civil servant
Sender Religionunknown
OriginDublin, Ireland
RecipientLieutenant of Counties
Recipient Gendermale
Relationshipbusiness, politics
SourceT 1883/58: Copied by Permission of D.C. Mc Laughlin Esq. #TYPE LET H. Labouchere, Dublin Castle. 7th September 1846, to Lieutenants of Counties.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, N. Ireland
Doc. No.8910086
Partial Date
Doc. TypeLET
Log13:10:1989 LT created 14:03:1990 mmcp input 15:03:
Word Count900


I AM Directed by the Lord Lieutenant to inform you,that His
Excellency, having taken into his consideration the circumstances in which
the Country is placed by the extensive failure of the Potato Crop, is
desirous of calling the attention of all the classes of the community to
those measures which have appeared to her Majesty's Government to best
calculated to mitigate the effects of this calamity.
As no authority can now be give for the execution of new WORKS under
9 Vict., c 1, such Works as may be required for the relief of distress must
be presented for, and sanctioned under the 10 Vict., c. 107.
With a view of affordind every assistance to the Magistrates and Cess
-Payers at the Special Sessions, His excellency has directed an Officer of
the Board of Works to be in attendance, and to submit the Plans and
Estimates of such works in the Barony, as the destitute poor may, with the
greatest public advantage, be employed upon.
As in some instances the extent of the Baronies is very considerable,
a has been vested in His Excellency in Council, of erecting certain
portions of them into a separate District for the purpose of this Act. The
necessity for adopting such a course, may, however, be obviated, if
attention be paid to the wants of each locality at the Sessions now convened
, and works distributed throughout the Barony, according to the extent of
destituion in each District.
As some misapprehension seems during the past season to have existed
in the minds of many persons with respect to the District for which Public
Works were appropiated, His Excellency desires it to be understood that the
Engineer or Officer superintending the work, cannot be authorized to regard
the limits to such a sub-division, either in the selection of the Works or
the District upon which they are eventually charged.
The Relief Committees will not, as heretofore, be authorised to issue
tickets for employment on the Public Works, but should furnish Lists of the
Persons requiring relief to the Officers in charge - noting them according
to their comparative destitution, and their number in family. From these
Lists (revised from time to time,) the persons to be employed must be
selected, who should, as far as practicable, be engaged at task or piece
work, and to be paid in proportion to the work actually done.
As these public works are undertaken only with the view of relieving
the temporary distress occasioned by the failure of the Potato Crop, it is
desirable that no encouragement should be given to the labourers to leave
their ordinary employment and congregate on the Relief Works - thus
seriously interfeing with the private operations of the farmer, and such
Works of improvement as may be undertaken by the Proprietors on their
respctive estates. The wages, should be given for the work actually
performed. Arrangements will be made for the weekly payment in money, of the
labourers engaged on the Public Works.
His Excellency will be prepared, as heretofore, to sanction donations
to Relief Committees in aid of private subscriptions; but the Accounts and
The judicious application of these funds will require the most
careful attention of the Committees. The sale of meal or other food in small
quantities, to persons who have no other means of procuring it, and at the
prices of ordinary years - The abstaining from giving higher prices than
are paid, or extracting a smaller quantum of work in return than is required
on the works carried on by the government - The limitation of the works in
all cases, to the extent to which private employment is proved not to be
available:-These appear to be the chief rules which should be adopted by the
Relief Committees for their guidance.
It should be distinctly understood, in reference to the Commissariat
operations of the Government, that it is not intended to interfere in any
case in which there is a reasonable expectation that the market will be supp
lied by mercantile enterprise. In those Districts to which the ordinary oper
ations of the provision trade cannot be expected adequatley to extend, it
will be absolutley necessary to provide a supply of food; but where the
Depots are established, they will not be opened while food can be obtained
by the people from private dealers, at reasonable prices; and under any
circumstances, the Government will, as far as possible, adhere to the
principle, that provisions shall only be sold at such price, as will allow
of the private dealer selling at the same price, with a reasonable profit.
The Lord Lieutenant is fully sensible of the patient endurance which
has marked the character of the people of this country under great
privataions; and he trusts that the assurance of his unceasing anxiety to
alleviate their distress by every means in his power, will tend to
allay excitement in their minds, and prevent those numerous assemblages,
which, while they create alarm in their minds of many, can effect no
advantage to those who join in such demonstrations.
His Excellency confidently relies on the co-operation and support of
those whose duty it will be to assist the Government in the different
Counties and Districts of Ireland during the continuance ofthe present
calamity; and he humbly trusts that the blessing of Divine Providence will
attend their united efforts to mitigate its severity.
I have the honor to be, &c.,
(signed) H. LABOUCHERE.