Extract from Report of Captain Kennedy - December 4, 1848
"MY acquaintance with the state of this Union does not allow me to
believe that the numbers becoming chargeable to the rates will stop short of 20,000. This
can hardly be a matter of surprise when I state (what the Commissioners are in possession
of) that I have forwarded returns of the eviction of 6090 souls since last July. These
small holders when evicted and their houses levelled, are the most hopeless and helpless
class of paupers, being in almost every instance encumbered with a large family. The
number I have stated does not comprise all those who have voluntarily surrendered, or who
have been dispossessed in various other modes. When 6090 souls are added to the fair
average of the infirm and helpless class in so large a population, the number on the
relief list may be readily accounted for.
"I must again repeat what I have so frequently reported, that there is a total absence of employment at any scale of remuneration. I can, even in the neighbourhood of a town, procure the services of a good able-bodied labourer for his food alone.
"I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that the amount of rate and employment (or rather absence of it) bear no relation to each other in this Union, and that, under existing circumstances, the absence of employment would be the same whether the rate were 15s. or 15d."
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