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Visitors to the the town had formerly no difficulty in obtaining a magistrate's order to visit the Asylum; and the cleanliness, good order, and busy industry pervading the establishment made the visit one of high gratification. On the representation, however, of the Superintendent that the influx of strangers had an injurious effect, and was found to retard the recovery of the patients, the Visiting Justices recently came to the resolution to restrict the privileges formerly enjoyed of inspecting the Asylum, and to confine it, with few exceptions, to men of science and the friends and relatives of the unfortunate inmates.
The first meeting of a Society (composed of medical men engaged in Lunatic establishments) for devoting especial attention to diseases of the mind, was held in the Lancaster Lunatic Asylum in the year 1842. This Society, like the British Association of Science, will hold its yearly meetings in different parts of the kingdom successively.
Every county-magistrate is ex officio a visiting magistrate of the Asylum. The internal affairs of the establishment are regulated by the Justices sitting in Petit Sessions at the
THIS handsome building, situate at the higher end of Church street, is, as its name imports, the residence of the Judges during their temporary sojourn at assize times. There is a palisading in front of the building, and at the doorway are two lions which, with their terrible manes,
have been sometimes mistaken for representations of the judges in their full-bottomed wigs. A room on the right, pannelled with black oak, is occupied by the magistrates sitting for the Hundred of Lonsdale South of the Sands, who hold their weekly sessions here every Saturday. The magistrates' clerks are Mr. Leonard Willan and Mr. Thomas Thompson, solicitors.
AMONG the other public buildings we may name the charities. The most ancient of these is Gardyner's Chantry, founded so long since as 1485, for the support of four poor persons. It consists of four small ancient houses on the east side of the Vicarage.
Penny's Hospital was founded in 1720, by Ald. Penny, for the maintenance of twelve poor men. It is situated in King street. The houses are placed in a small court, at the end of which is a chapel, in which prayers are read every Wednesday afternoon, by the Rev. John Beethom, who has an annual allowance for this purpose.
IN Common Garden street, was founded by the late Mrs. Anne Gillison in 1790. It consists of eight houses for the same number of poor unmarried women.
Is in Thurnham street, Dalton square. It is an admirably conducted charitable institution, and is most worthy of
the assistance of the benevolent. The Dispensary is principally supported by annual subscriptions, and relieves the poor at their dwellings or receives them into the house as the urgency of the case may require. The House Surgeon is Mr. Ricketts.
THE NATIONAL SCHOOLS.
THE Boys' National School, endowed by the late Matthew Pyper, is on the Green Area, near the New Bridge: it is a large erection, and contains about 390 scholars. The Master is Mr. Lathom. - The Girls' National School is in High street and contains about 250 scholars: the Mistress is Mrs. Kilner.-From the Boys the trustees yearly select thirty to be clothed from funds raised by charitable contributions; and the Ladies, Visitors of the Girls' School, select a few of the most deserving Girls, for the same purpose. The boys wear the usual Blue.
THE GIRLS' CHARITY SCHOOL
Is in Middle street, and contains sixty Girls selected from amongst the oldest in the Girls' National School, of poor parents legally settled in the town. The Girls are allowed to go, in turns, to respectable houses (subscribers' having the preference) for periods not exceeding a month at one time, when their wages are one shilling a-week and three pence for each day under that time: a regular account is kept of each girl's earnings; and, at the expiration of the year, each girl receives half her wages, the other half going towards her clothes. But they are not allowed to work for lodging-houses or public-houses. They wear a
comfortable blue dress; and their neatness and demeanour reflect the highest credit on those who have the management of the institution.
THE population of Lancaster exhibits a very small increase in the decennial returns, compared with other towns in the county. In 1783 the number of inhabitants was 8584. In 1801 it was 9030; 1811, 9,247; 1821, 10144; 1831, 12,613; 1841, 14,748. Its population has increased with greater proportionate rapidity since the introduction of manufactures into the town.
Of the six mills in the town, five are employed in the cotton manufacture, and one in the silk.
Lancaster sends two members to Parliament, Thomas Greene esq., of Whittington Hall near Kirkby-Lonsdale, Chairman of Committees of the House of Commons; and George Marton esq., of Capernwray Hall near Lancaster.
The Corporation consists of a Mayor, six Aldermen, and eighteen Town Councillors.
Two newspapers are published in the town: the Lancaster Gazette (Conservative) established in 1801, and now published by Mr. Quarme in Market street; and the Lancaster Guardian (Liberal) commenced in 1837-Mr. A. Milner of Church street, the publisher.
Lancaster possesses but one Bank. It is on the Joint Stock principle, and is one of the most profitable undertakings in the Kingdom to the shareholders. The Bank is in Church street. J. Coulston, esq., Manager.
There are two public news-rooms, the Merchants' News Room in Market street, and the Amicable News Room in New street, which are open to strangers on the introduction of a member.
The Amicable Library in Church street is an excellent public institution, possessing several thousand volumes; it holds out great advantages to subscribers.
The principal Inns are the King's Arms inn and posting-house, the Royal Oak inn and posting-house, the Commercial inn, and the Old Sir Simon's inn.
Saturday is the principal market day. The sale of poultry, fruit, vegetables, &c., with which the market is well supplied, takes place in the Market place, which presents every Saturday a busy and enlivening scene.
Baines in his valuable History of Lancashire, a work to which we have to express our obligations, says of the county town:-"The parish of Lancaster, though inferior in wealth and population to several of the southern parishes, is superior to them all in the dignity of its ancient family, and in the station it holds as the capital of the county. From a variety of causes this place never has been, and probably never will be, either a great commercial, or a principal manufacturing station;-the want of fuel will prevent the latter, and the difficulties of the navigation of the Lune will operate as a permament bar to the former. Nor perhaps is it to be wished; in a county like this, a few retreats from the bustle of active life are necessary for those who wish for a species of retire