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Seamen and Apprentices boarding at the Sailors'
Home, by the schoolmaster of the institution."

Seaman find, therefore, in this institution,
a lodging-house, club, school, and church
in one. That it has already done much direct
good in the neighbourhood, we learn on the
testimony of Dr. Stephen Ward, a resident in
the district, who gives gratuitously his
medical assistance to the "Home," and is well
qualified to judge on the subject, from a
prolonged professional experience of sailors.

Of course there are factions about this
matter, as about every other; and I learned in my
inquiry that "Sailors' Homes" have their
opponents. These, however, consist mainly
of sailors' lodging-house keepers, nautical
tavern-keepers, and a curious brood of
amphibious lawyers who undertake nautical
litigation. The lodging-house keepers' opposition
is natural;—they seem to consider that the
superiority of their establishments consists
in the absence of religious elements! We
must be allowed to deny any superiority in
this peculiarity of their houses. Who would
judge of the institutions of Lycurgus by the
censures of the Helots?

The charge of too great constraint is
disproved by examining the regulations; and
another charge which I heard made (that a
preference is given to "Sailors' Home" men
over others at the "Shipping Office" there) is
disproved by the statistics of the establishment.

The average number of seamen resident at
the "Home," I understood to be one
hundred and sixty. From its opening, in 1835,
up to April of last year, forty-four thousand
seven hundred and eighty-eight boarders
were received, of whom twelve thousand six
hundred and fifty-six were old boarders. One
fact is decisive in proof of the superiority of
the sanitary arrangements of this establishment;—
during the cholera one fatal case only
occurred, the disease having been fatal to
many seamen in the neighbourhood, who
were less salubriously lodged.

I was told that the great mass of the
boarders are generally merchants' seamen,
rather than men-of-war's men; which seems
attributable to the fact, that men-of-war being
paid off at Sheerness, Portsmouth, and
Plymouth, their crews do not so naturally drop
in, as it were, to such a place, as the crews of
ships coming up the river. Then, of course,
these seaports have their "Crimps" as well as
London; and there is nobody to act wisely
towards the sailor; and I have no doubt,
from my knowledge of the service, that there
are plenty of Old School British officers who
pooh-pooh such institutions altogether. These
gentlemen have a vague notion that
blackguardism and efficiency go together, and that
all contrary effort is "cant." You'll curb their
spirit, Sir, and take the 'dash' out of 'em;
besides, you'll never do it, Sir, believe me!"
Now, all this is very melancholy and absurd,
and must be got rid of before the condition of
English seamen can be improved.

There is a "Destitute Sailors' Asylum,"
another institution in the same street, where
shelter and food are given to seamen, "who
are in distress from any cause." In many
cases the distress arises from the recklessness
of the seaman himself, which such institutions
as the "Home" are intended to strive against.

Mr. Green, the ship-owner, has a special
"Home" for his own seamen, which is highly
prized for its excellent arrangements. Its
rules and regulations were adopted from the
Well Street one, of which I have been writing.
The average number of men in Mr. Green's,
during the year 1849, was four hundred and
eighty-seven; that in Well Street, for the
same year, four thousand six hundred and

The "Sailors' Home" numbers many naval
officers of rank among its directors; and
many individuals have, from time to time,
supported it with donations and subscriptions,
though, perhaps, it has attracted as little aid
and attention for an institution with objects
altogether so honourable and important, as
any we know.


DIFFERENT periods of the world have been
signalised by different struggles of art or
science, or other intellectual endeavour, in
which the greatest nations, or those possessing
most mental energy, were constantly
engaged. Thus, we find the early Egyptians
devoted themselves to astronomy, architecture,
and mythological sculpture,—and
produced wonders. War, as an art, was not
cultivated; they thought only of vast armies
swarming like clouds of locusts, to devastate
an enemy's country. The early Greeks
brought the art of sculpture to perfection;
accomplished master-pieces in philosophy,
and in the tragic drama, and greatly
advanced the art of war. The early Romans
brought the art of war to a higher state, and
devoted themselves to it more than to any
other study. Long periods of barbarism and
feudal battles succeeded, until the revival of
letters in Italy; and then we find the
greatest intellects devoting themselves
sedulously to all the chief branches of learning,
science, and the fine arts. Astronomy was
greatly advanced; chemistry, also, in many
respects, by means of the passion for alchemy
that so long prevailed; but painting was only
brought to perfection in the time of Michael
Angelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and
Titian. It was the most highly patronised of
all thingskings, nobles, and the clergy,
leading the way. The history of the world
shows no patronage equal to it. Though
adverse circumstances, by exciting the will of
genius, have often proved advantageous to the
ultimate development of greatness, it is yet
well worth noticing what great and rapid
results may be produced by the most favourable