Picture of Arthur Young

Arthur Young

places mentioned

1st to 10th August 1776: Antrim, Londonderry and Donegal

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AUGUST 1st, to Arthur Buntin's, Esq; near Belfast; the soil a stiff clay; lets at old rents 10s. new ones 18s. the town parks of that place 30s. to 70s. ten miles round it 10s. to 20s. average 13s. A great deal of flax sown, every countryman having a little, always on potatoe land, and one ploughing: they usually sow each family a bushel of seed. Those who have no land pay the farmers 20s. rent for the space a bushel of feed sows, and always on potatoe land. They plant many more potatoes than they eat to supply the market at Belfast; manure for them with all their dung, and some of them mix with dung earth and lime, and this is found to do better. There is much alabaster near the town, which is used for stucco plaister; sells from 1l. 1s. to 25s. a ton.

IN my way to Antrim, viewed the bleach-green of Mr. Thomas Sinclair; it is the completest I had seen here. I understood that the bleaching season lasts 9 months, and that watering on the grass was quite left off. Mr. Sinclair himself was not at home, or I should probably have gained some intelligence that might have been useful.

CR0SSED the mountains by the new road to Antrim, and found them to the summits to consist of exceeding good loam, and such as would improve into good meadow. It is all thrown to the little adjoining farms, with very little or any rent paid for it. They make no other use of it than turning their cows on. Pity they do not improve; a work more profitable than any they could undertake. All the way to Antrim lands let at an average at 8s. The linen manufacture spreads over the whole country, consequently the farms are very small, being nothing but patches for the convenience of weavers,

FROM Antrim to Shaen's Castle the road runs at the end of Loch Neagh,commanding a noble view of it; of such an extent that the eye can see no land over it. It appears like a perfect sea, and the shore is broken sand banks, which look so much like it, that one can hardly believe the water to be fresh. Upon my arrlval at the Castle, I was most agreeably saluted with four men hoeing a field of turnips round it, as a preparation for grass. These were the first turnip hoers I have seen in Ireland, and I was more pleased than if I had seen four emperors.

THE Castle is beautifully situated on the Lake, the windows commanding a very noble view of it; and this has the finer effect, as the woods are considerable, and form a fine accompanyment to this noble inland sea. Mr. O'Neil not only received me with the most flattering politeness, but was extremely assiduous for my correct information. He is a very considerable farmer, has sown turnips 3 years, never less than 11 acres, and has fattened oxen and cows, kept milch ones on them, and has found them exceedingly useful. The beasts throve perfectly well, and he is well convinced that nothing can be more beneficial; by their means he has carried on his fat bullocks from autumn, when they would sell for 8l. 10s. being 50s profit on 6l. the purchase price; but from turnips, he sells at 11l. 11s. to 14l. A clearer testimony cannot be given. The cabbages were applied to the same use when the turnips were gone.

MR. O'Neil plants his potatoes in the furrows the plough forms as it stirs the land, by which a very great saving is made in labour, and the crops better than common. Among his woods he has a great deal of fern, (pteris aquilina) all regularly cut and stacked for littering the farm horses, by which means he raises great quantities of manure. None of the farmers use oxen in ploughing, nor any of the gentlemen, except Mr. O'Neil and Mr. Lesley. Mr. O'Neil introduced the custom, and has found it uncommonly beneficial. Has manured 13 acres of clay land with gravel from the lake shore, 1700 car loads, each 3 barrels per acre. It is not lime-stone gravel, but small pebbly, without any earth among it. It was laid on in 1775, the year of fallow, and now is under wheat, the best crop acknowledged that ever was seen upon the land. He has many one-horse carts, which carry 6 barrels, and the common car carries only 3. As I wanted to know the weight of a common Irish car, Mr. O'Neil ordered one to be weighed; it was 2cwt. 2qrs. 14lb. One of his carts weighed at the same time 4cwt. 2qrs. 21lb. Much hollow draining done at Shaen's Castle, cut three feet and a half deep, and filled with whitethorn bushes; the soil strong loam with stones on clay; the effect very considerable; the land made dry, which before draining was perfectly poaching. Of this great improvement he has done 77 acres. The soil in this neighbourhood is in general what is here called stiff clay, that is, as I found, a strong stoney loam on a yellow clay. Some bog, and a little sandy skirt on the shore of the lake. Bog is so scattered, that none of Mr. O'Neil's tenants are farther than half a mile from it. Rents rise from 6s. to 10s. average 8s. Farms, as in all the linen countries, are generally very small; they rise from 5 acres to 100, but in general they are from 5 to 30. Scarce any of them but are weavers, or the employers of weavers; but they have such a custom of splitting their farms among their children, that one of 6 acres will be divided. Mr. O'Neil has found this to be a source of the greatest misery and inconvenience, for the portions are so small that they cannot live on them; the least accident, such as the death of a cow, &c. reduces them to want, so that neither rent nor any common demand can be paid. They are likewise obliged, in order to make their little patch come near to their support, to crop it every year with oats, till the land is become almost a caput mortuum; and they are reduced to great distress with paying a very low rent. This is also found in their circumstances; rents, much under the value, are got from them with great difficulty, depending entirely on their web, and by means of their husbandry are sometimes disappointed even by that. They are by no means in good circumstances, but much distressed by every demand. In respect to living, their diet is milk, potatoes, and oat bread; very little butter, as they sell what they make. Not less than a 20 acred farmer has a side of salted beef in a winter. Many of them nothing but potatoes and milk, some only water. There is no such thing in common as a labourer unconnected with the manufacture. Every cabbin has a dog regularly. There is a custom here called rundale , which is a division of their farms into spaces by balks, without fences, which they take here and there exactly like the common fields of England. It is a most pernicious custom, which gives to all these farms the mischiefs of our open field system in England. I believe it prevails down in Wexford, &c. where I mentioned farms in partnership without sufficiently explaining this circumstance. The rent of the county in general is 100,000l. a year, and there are not 400,000 acres, or 5s. 6d. an acre. Land sells at 21 years purchase. The courses—1. Potatoes. 2. Oats; the produce 40 bushels. 3. Oats, 30 bushels. 4. Oats, 25 bushels. 5. Left for weeds and rubbish 2 years.

1. Potatoes. 2. Flax. 3. Oats. 4. Oats. 5. Lay out to weeds.

No clover, turnips, &c. Also, 1. Potatoes. 2. Wheat, 4 to 8 barrels. 3. Oats. 4. Oats. Potatoes are all put in the trenching way; all their dung used for them, except now and then a little for barley. They plant 30 to 40 bushels of seed per acre. Weed them by hand, and get on an average about 300 or 400 bushels. A family consisting of a man, his wife, and four children, will eat three bushels of potatoes, and 20 lb. weight of oatmeal a week. No natural manure of any kind used, nor lime; Some few will burn the surface of the bogs to ashes, and carry them to their lands for oats, on clay, and the effect is found to be considerable. Tythes are paid per acre 2s. for oats, potatoes and flax nothing. County cess 2d. an acre; No tea drank, in the country, or at least very little; The leases are three lives, or 31 years; No men who hire large tracts in order to relet again, but plenty of them under Lord Antrim, even to 2 or 3000l. a year a man. The increase of the people is very great, extravagantly so; and is felt severely by emigration being stopped at present. Meat to 1d. rise in 20 years. A poor man's firing is six days labour cutting, which with all expence, will be 1l. 10s. at a mile distance, or 90 kish of turf. For flax they plough their potatoe land once.

After heckling, each stone will have 5 lb. flax and three of tow.

  . s. d.
5lb. at 1s. 2d. 0 5 10
3 lb. at 8d. 0 2 0
The stone price to sell 0 7 10

THE flax is spun from four to eight hanks to the pound. Some very curious will spin it to 10 and 12, average 6, or 30 to the 5lb. which will sell from 3s. to 3s. 6d. the spangle of 4 hanks, or 10d. a hank. Women are generally hired to spin, at from 16S. to 30s. the half year and board, and engage to spin for 30s. six hanks a week. The 3lb. of tow will make nine hanks of 3 hanks per lb. of which they make linen for labourers shirts, &c. and sells for 1s. 1d. to 1s. 2d. per yard white. The six hank yarn will spin into a 1600 web; they make from 14 to 20 hundred. 63 hanks of six hank yarn will make a web of 1600 cloth. The weaver is paid 7d. a yard; he will do two yards a day, including dressing, &c. and the piece will sell in the monthly market of Randalstown for 1s. 11d. to 2s. a yard green.

THE hearts of steel lasted three years; began in 1770 against rents and tythes, and from that went to all sorts of grievances. All was night work, with many fire arms. It was in reality owing to the impudence and levelling spirit of the dissenters. The roman catholics were the most quiet. Tythes, however, were a real grievance; the proctors let the first, and perhaps the second year with them run by bond, and they oppressed them by holding the bond over their heads. These tythe farmers are a bad set of people. In the emigrations of 1772 and 1773, many farmers took with them from 30l. to 300l. Near Brochaine, a lodge of Mr. O'Niel's, 10 miles distant, there are some large grazing farms; a few that fatten 2 or 300 bullocks, but in general on poor hilly land at 3s. to 6s. an acre. The bullocks are 4 cwt. buy in at 4l. and sell out from 5l. to 6l.

AUGUST 3d, passing Randalstown, had a constant view of Slamish, a remarkable mountain rising from a range of other mountains. Slamish in Irish is the mountain , by way of pre-eminence; under it in the vale is a bog of great length; and between Aghoghill and Rasharkin another very improveable. Between Rasharkin and Ballymony to the left, a vast one many miles in length, chiefly improveable. To Leslyhill, where I found Mr. Lesly, a warm admirer of husbandry, and practising it on a scale not often met with. I have no where met with any person more inclined, or better able to inform me minutely on every object. He has made considerable improvements of bog; very near his house was one of 20 feet deep, which he has entirely reclaimed. His operation was cutting a main drain eight feet wide, five deep, and four wide at bottom, at 9d. a perch; then it was levelled by digging at 8d. a square perch; part of it covered with dung, 320 cars an acre, each 3 cwt. and planted with potatoes. The crop 320 bushels per acre, and then levelled the trenches and sowed 20 bushels of hay seeds per acre. The other part marled, 160 cars, 10 bushels each per acre, and grasses sown at once. The potatoe part much the finest. In another part of the bog, he improved it by cutting drains six perch asunder, four feet wide, and three deep, at 4d. a perch; has improved some bog by first draining, then liming on the surface, 160 barrels per acre; ploughing three times, and sowing wheat in the trenching way. The crop 8 to 10 barrels an acre. On a heathy bog, 12 feet deep, drained, then limed, and formed beds six feet broad, with trenches of two; and in the spring sowed oats covered out of the same furrows with spades; the oats indifferent. Is now digging another bog, and burning it. In general would recommend in this improvement to cut the main drains eight feet wide, and five deep, which must be made wherever the fall is; if only one fall, one drain will do. Then at six perch asunder, cut cross drains, four feet wide, and three deep; this draining will make it in a year dry enough for cars; carry 160 loads an acre of dung, each 5 cwt. If not dung then marle, and on the manuring, trench in potatoes in the common way. If neither dung nor marle, then clay, and dig it in; sow hay-seeds, and roll well. After the potatoes dig or plough, and level, and sow oats. The crop 40 bushels, and with the oats the hay seeds. Is clear that this system will improve any bog.

MR. Lesly's course of-crops on stiff clay is,— 1. Fallow and lime. 2. Wheat. 3. Barley. 4. Gats. 5. Oats. 6. Clover for two years, plough in the second crop the second year. After two ploughings, he harrows and limes, 160 barrels per Cunningham acre; after the lime is well slacked, a slight harrowing to mix it. Before sowing a very shallow ploughing, and a slight harrowing to level. Then line out the lands eight feet, and furrows 18 inches wide; sow the land, and cover the seed with the trenches, cut one foot deep, to cover one inch deep. By this means gets immense crops. Expences and produce,

1. and 2. Fallow and Wheat.
  . s. d.
Expences 15 5 6
Produce, 12 barrels, at 1l. 2s. and straw 1l. 14 4 0
Loss 1 1 6
3. Barley.
Produce, eight bolls, at 25s. and straw 10s. 10 10 0
Expences 3 15 3
Profit 6 14 9
4. Oats.
Produce, 10 bolls, and straw 1l. 11 0 0
Expences 3 9 6
Profit 7 10 6
5. Oats.
Produce 9 0 0
Expences 3 7 6
Profit 5 12 6
6. Clover.
Expences 2 3 0
Soiling two men, a horse and car, at 3s. 2d. a day, 19s. a week, will feed 20 cows, say 1s. a cow; begin 1st of june, and finish middle of October, 18 weeks, 18s. a cow; an acre feeds eight cows, which is 7 4 0
  9 7 0
Produce, value of the summer-grass at 2l. 2s. the common pay is 1l. 11s. 6d, in pastures 16 16 0
Expences 9 7 6
Profit 7 8 6
7. Clover
Rent, &c. 1 3 0
Soiling six cows, at 18s. 5 8 0
  6 11 0
Produce, six cows, at 2l. 2s. 12 12 0
Expences 6 11 0
Profit 6 1 0
Profit, barley 6 14 9
—— oats 7 10 6
—— ditto 5 12 6
—— clover 7 9 0
—— ditto 6 1 0
  33 7 9
Lost by wheat 1 1 0
  32 6 9
Average profit 5 7 9

Twelve acres of clay land he limed 160 barrels an acre on the grass a year before he ploughed it, then summer fallowed it, and sowed 1 bushel of seed wheat, and reaped 12 barrels an acre.

I SHOULD remark, that Mr. Leslie's crops of wheat were the finest I had seen in Ireland, nor do I remember finer in England. He has burned great quantities of marle and clay, (the latter upon the surface of the marle pit) into ashes, and I saw two immense heaps burned in so complete a manner, that I have not a doubt but the mode in which it is performed is perfect. One contained 7,308 solid feet, or 274 cubical yards; the other 6,534 feet, or 242 yards: in all 13,842 feet, or 516 yards, 10 feet. The expence of the whole came to 21l. 19s. 4d. It took 64 kishes of turf at beginning, but afterwards burnt itself. In the progress of the heaps, spread bog earth on some of the layers, to make it burn quicker, but it will do without. The following paper contains the directions by which Mr. Lefly performed the work.

Diagram of a clay kiln


"THE kiln (Plate II.) is 20 feet by 12, but it may be made longer or shorter, according to the quantity you want; it may also be of any breadth that will allow men from each side to throw clay to the middle. A. A. are the air-pipes in the middle between the sod walls made, either by cutting a little trench in the ground six inches deep, and so many broad, covering them with flat stones, slates or bricks, or by stones laid on the ground at the same distance, and covered in the above manner; the use of these being to give air to the fire, and make it burn better. The end must be brought a foot on each side without the sod walls, and carefully kept from being choaked up with the ashes or rubbish. B. B. are the sod walls, about 10 or 12 inches thick; they must be three feet distance from each other; the use of them is to keep fuel and clay tight, and confine the heat. Raise all the sod walls two feet and an half high, except the sides next the wind, fill the spaces between the walls with turf, furze, wood, or any manner of firing, and thereon lay dry clay six or eight inches thick, very close and even, set fire to it on the windward side, and then build up that side also to the level of the other sod walls; when the clay begins to look red, throw on more by degrees; the greatest difficulty is to get the first clay well on fire, when that is accomplished after the first day, it wants no other attendance than to throw on some fresh clay morning and evening, and it will continue burning as long as you please, till you can throw the clay no higher. The clay may be used just as it is dug out of the pit. The sod walls on the ends and sides must from time to time be raised as high as the clay to keep in the heat; if the fire be too weak, it may be helped by giving it vent by a poker from the top, or if it goes out, it may be renewed by putting in some fresh, fuel and clay. When you fail to supply it with fresh clay, the fire will go out; the clay will then appear like the rubbish of a brick kiln. Lay the same quantity of it on your land that you would of dung; but as poor and light land requires more than strong ground, experience must determine the exact quantity. The frost and rain will dissolve all the large lumps. It will exceedingly enrich your land either for corn, flax, or grass; it kills all sprats, (juncus) and produces a fine sweet herbage, that lasts many years. Chuse the place for your kiln, where the clay is thick and most convenient for carriage to your fields that want manure; it will be well worth your pains to burn any clay or earth in this manner (sand and gravel only excepted); it is a very cheap manure, and hardly inferior to the marle, shells, lime, sand or seaweed, that have enriched all the farmers of this kingdom, who have had sense and industry enough to make use of them. The best kiln 16 feet wide."

MR. LESLY practised the drill husbandry several years, in consequence of the recommendations of Mr. Wynn Baker. He bought of him a complete set of tools for the purpose, drill-plough, horse-hoes, &c. and spared neither attention or expence to give it a fair trial, but found that it would not answer at all, and then gave it up. Lucerne by transplantation he also tried, following Mr. Baker's instructions exactly; but that did no better than the other, and he ploughed it up.

IN cattle, Mr. Lesly has been equally attentive; he procured one of Mr. Bakewell's bulls two years ago, and has bred many calves by him, but they are not yet of on age to judge of the merit of the breed: the bull is a very fine one. In draining he has made considerable exertions, principally by hollow ones, His granary is one of the best contrived I have seen in Ireland; it is raised over the threshing floor of his barn, and the floor of it is a hair-cloth for the air to pass through the heap, which is a good contrivance, The whole building is well executed and very convenient, and contains two large bullock sheds.

THE common husbandry around Lesly Hill is like that of the rest of the manufacturing part of Ireland. The country is in very small divisions, of from 5 to 30 acres, and the rent upon an average 12s. Rent of the whole county not 5s. Londonderry not so much.

I. POTATOES. 2. Flax. 3. Oats. 4. Oats. 5. Weeds for two years, called a lay.

1. POTATOES. 2. Barley. 3. Oats. 4. Oats. 5. Weeds for two years.

An acre of potatoes.  
  . s. d.
Rent 0 12 0
Three bolls seed, 30s. 1 10 0
Dung, 160 loads, at 3d. 2 0 0
Spreading, planting, and trenching 1 5 0
No weeding because lay ground.      
Taking up, &c. 2 0 0
  7 7 0
320 bushels at 1s. 16 0 0
Expences 7 7 0
Profit 8 13 0

Prime cost 5d. per bushel.

A man, his wife and 4 children, will eat 4 bushels a week. If they live upon oatmeal, they will eat 40 lb. or 2 bushels of oats. Average price of oatmeal 2s. 2d. a score pounds. Of barley sow 3 bushels and get 70. Of oats they sow 7 bushels and get 40 the first crop, and 30 the second, and if they run a third crop, not more than 20. A little lime used.

The stone of flax will, after heckling, be 5lb. and 3lb. of tow.

The flax is generally sown on their own land, and in that case only the common rent to be reckoned. The 5lb. of flax will spin into 9 hank yarn 45 hanks, and a woman will spin 4 a week, the price for spinning 6d. a hank. If they are hired, they are paid 3l. a year and board. Of these 9 hank yarn, the cloth made takes 50 hanks to a web of 25 yards, but they make double webs of twice that length: of 7 hank yarn a web of 48 yards, 32 inch wide, will take 88 hanks; a man weaves it in 15 days, is paid 25s. and sells it for 3s. a yard green. The tow is spun into 2 hank yarn, and wove into coarse cloth.

THE food of the poor people is potatoes, oatmeal and milk. They generally keep cows; some of them will have a quarter or a side of beef in winter, but not all. Upon the whole, they are in general much better off than they were jio years ago, and dress remarkably well. The manufacture is at present very flourishing. When the price of cloth is low or bad, numbers of weavers turn labourers. The emigrations were considerable in 1772 and 1773, and carried off a good deal of money, but it was chiefly of dissolute and idle people: they were not missed at all. There is some land yet in the rundale way, but 20 years ago much more; also changedale, which is every man changing his land every year.

RENTS have fallen in 4 years 3s. an acre, and are but just beginning to get up again. Land sells at 21 years purchase. Labour has risen in 20 years from 5d. to 9d. No rise in the price of provisions in 20 years, or very little. The religion ten to one presbyterians.

AUGUST 4th, accompanied Mr. Lefly to his brother's at —— ——, within 3 miles of the Giant's Causeway, where I had the pleasure of learning several particulars concerning the country upon the coast. They measure by the Cunningham-acre, and rents are on an average 12s. Along the coast there is a tract of clay at from 14s. to 20s. The courses of crops:

1. Potatoes. 2. Barley. 3. Oats. 4. Oats.

1. Potatoes. 2. Barley. 3. Flax. 4. Oats. 5. Oats, and then lay out for 2 years.

MUCH of the country is in the rundale and likewise in the changedale system. The little farmers are all weavers, who weave 10 or 1200 linen, and spin great quantities of yarn for the Derry market. Oatmeal and potatoes are the general food of the lower people, who reckon that one barrel of potatoes, to live on, is equal to 2 bushels of meal. One barrel will last a family of six eight days, and costs on an average 3s. 6d. or 4s. Oatmeal 1s. 2d. to 3s. 6d. the 20 lb, but 1d. per lb. on an average. One bushel of oats yields 18lb. of meal. The oats are dried at home with turf on kilns, which cost from 3l. to 5l. they are then sent to a mill to be shelled, in which operation they lose half; after which they are ground; the landlord appoints the mill, and they pay 22d. for it.

THE average crop of potatoes is 300 bushels on the Cunningham acre, which is 259 to the English. The account they state thus:

  . s. d.
Rent 0 15 0
County cess 0 0 6
Seed, 30 bushels, at 1s. 1 10 0
300 load of dung, at 2d. 2 10 0
Putting in 40 men a day, at 6d. 1 0 0
Weeding 0 10 0
Digging, &c. &c. 2 0 0
  8 5 6
  . s. d.
300 bushels, at 1s. 15 0 0
Expences 8 5 6
Profit 6 14 6

Prime cost, per bushel, 6d.

THEY are, however, sometimes so low that, instead of profit, the account is a losing one; last year they were 4d. a bushel, and in Coleraine 3d. Oats are now 1s. a bushel; several thousand bushels have been exported from Coleraine to London at that price.

THERE is a considerable salmon fishery on the coast; the fish are cured in puncheons with common salt, and then in tierces of 42 gallons each, 6 of which make a ton; and it sells at present at 17l. a ton, but never before more than 16l. average for 10 years 14l. This rise of price is attributed to the American supply of the Mediterranean with fish being cut off.

RODE from Mr. Lesly's to view the Giant's Causeway. It is certainly a very great curiosity, as an object for speculation, upon the manner of its formation; whether it owes its origin to fire, and is a species of lava, or to chrystalization, or to whatever cause, is a point that has employed the attention of men much more able to decide upon it than I am; and has been so often treated, that nothing I can say would be new. When two bits of these baysaltes are rubbed together quickly, they emit a considerable scent like burnt leather. The scenery of the causeway, nor of the adjacent mountains, is very magnificent, though the clifts are bold; but for a considerable distance there is a strong disposition in the rocks to run into pentagonal cylinders, and even at —— Bridge, by Mr. Lesly's, is a rock in which the same disposition is plainly visible. I believe the causeway would have struck me more if I had not seen the prints of Staffa.

RETURNED to Lesly-hill; and august 5th departed for Coleraine. There the Right Hon. Mr. Jackson assisted me with the greatest politeness in procuring the intelligence I wished about the salmon fishery, which is the greatest in the kingdom, and viewed both fisheries above and below the town, very pleasantly situated on the river Ban. The salmon spawn in all the rivers that run into the Ban about the beginning of august, and as soon as they have done, swim to the sea, where they stay till january, when they begin to return to the fresh water, and continue doing it till august, in which voyage they are taken; the nets are set the middle of january, but by act of parliament no nets nor weirs can be kept down after the 12th of august. All the fisheries on the river Ban let at 6000l. a year. From the sea to the rock above Coleraine, where the weirs are built, belongs to the London companies; the greatest part of the rest to Lord Donnegal. The eel fisheries let at 1000l. a year, and the salmon fisheries at Coleraine, 1000l. The eels make periodical voyages, as the salmon, but instead of spawning in the fresh water, they go to the sea to spawn, and the young fry return against the stream; to enable them to do which with greater ease at the leap, straw ropes are hung in the water for them; when they return to sea they are taken: many of them weigh 9 or 10lb. The young salmon are called grawls , and grow at a rate which I should suppose scarce any fish commonly known equals; for within the year some of them will grow to 16 or 18lb. but in general 10 or 12lb. Such as escape the first year's fishery are salmon; and at two years old will generally weigh 20 to 25lb. This year's fishery has proved the greatest that ever was known, and they had the largest hawl, taking 1452 salmon at one drag of one net. In the year 1758, they had 882, which was the next greatest hawl. I had the pleasure of seeing 370 drawn in at once. They have this year taken 400 ton of fish; 200 sold fresh at 1d. and 1d. a lb. and 200 salted, at 18l. and 20l. per ton, which are sent to London, Spain, and Italy. The fishery employs 80 men, and the expences in general calculated to equal the rent.

THE linen manufacture is very general about Coleraine, coarse ten hundred linen. It is carried to Dublin in cars 110 miles, at 5s. per cwt. in summer, and 7s. 6d. in winter.

RENTS in Derry 10s. 6d. the Irish acre; and farms from 6 to 15 acres. The emigrations from this neighbourhood were in general of idle, loose, disorderly people. It is at present too populous; and if the emigrations are not renewed, the ill effects will be severely felt. The whole county of Derry belongs to the London companies and the Bishop, except some trifling properties. There is a little trade at Coleraine in hides, butter and fish, and some meal is imported, which sounds strange, after hearing that so many oats had been exported.

MR. JACKSON has made great improvements to his house, which is situated in a very pretty domain of 85 acres on the banks of the river, and all the timber he has used is out of his bog; he gets very large oak and fir trees: they are found 20 feet deep, and all lie exactly east and west.

AUGUST 6th, to Newtown-Limmavaddy; went by Magilligan, for the sake of seeing the new house building on the sea coast, by the bishop of Derry, which will be a large and convenient edifice, the shell not finished; it stands on a bold shore, but in a country where a tree is a rarity.

AT Magilligan is a rabbit warren, which yields on an average 3000 dozen per annum, last year 4000, and 5000 have been known. The bodies are sold at 2d. a couple; but the skins are sent to Dublin at 5s. 7d. to 6s. a dozen, selling from 1500l. to 1800l. a year. The warren is a sandy tract on the shore, and belongs to the bishop. I was informed, that at Hornhead in Donnegal, Mr. Stewart has a warren of sand 25 miles long. Mr. Smith, of Newtown-Limmavaddy gave me the following particulars of that neighbourhood. Farms rise so high as 60 to 70 acres, and a few to 200, in general about 40 acres; many weavers patches at 3 or 4, but the farmers themselves have yarn spun in their houses, which they give to the weavers to make into cloth: the farmer himself attending to nothing but the management of his land. This appears to me a sign that I shall soon quit the linen country; for these are more of farmers than any set I have met with for some time. Rents for a few miles about the town, not including the town parks nor mountain, are at 5s. the parks 30s. the mountains are in great quantities, more than of cultivated land; and all they do is to raise some young cattle and feed some sheep. The 5s. are old rents, but new are 10s. which is the general average, Cunningham measure: of the whole county on an average not more than 4s. including bog and mountain.

I. Potatoes, value on an average 10l. 2. Barley, 3 bolls, at 12 bushels. 3. Oats, worth 50s. 4. Oats. 5. Flax. 6. Lay 2 or 3 years, some sow grasses, clover, &c. 7. Oats. 8. Oats. Manures are shells from the Loch shore and lime; lay 60 barrels of shells per acre, at 1s. a barrel on the land, will last from 5 to 7 years; the effect very great. Prefer it to lime for light land; but for deep clay ground lime best: of which 100 barrels, at 1s. More shells used than lime. Mountains beginning to be improyed; they pay up to 1s. 6d. an acre; lime at 120 barrels an acre; sow oats in succession, as long as the land wiil bear them, get pretty good crops, but late: the soil is very wet, but they drain it with ditches.

THE linen manufacture is from 10 hundred to 16. They raise their own flax; the crops 28 stone per acre; after fetching worth 5s. 4d. a stone. The yarn from 2 to 10 hanks a lb, generally 4; spin a hank a day: are hired for it at 3l. 3s. a year; if done in the cabbin, are paid from 4d. to 4d. a hank. The poor live on potatoes, milk, and oatmeal, with many herrings and salmon; very little flesh. In 10 or 15 years, their circumstances are improved; they live and dress better, and have better cabbins.

THE emigrations were very great from hence of both idle and industrious, and carried large sums with them. Not too populous at present. The weavers have a great spirit of dividing their farms, however small, from which many inconveniencies arise; the farmers will do the same with their farms. Rents have fallen, in 5 years, 3s. 6d. in the pound, and are still rather upon the decline. The manufacture flourishes most when oatmeal is not lower than 1d. a lb. A bushel of potatoes is reckoned equal to 20lb. of oatmeal.

FROM Limmavaddy to Derry there is very little uncultivated land. Within four miles of the latter rents are from 12s. to 20s. mountains paid for but in the gross. Reached Derry at night, and waited two hours in the dark before the ferry-boat came over for me.

AUGUST 7th, in the morning went to the Bishop's palace to leave my letters of recommendation; for I was informed of my misfortune in his being out the kingdom. He was upon a voyage to Staffa, and had sent home some of the stones of which it consists; they appeared perfectly to resemble in shape, colour, and smell, those of the Giant's Causeway. I felt at once the extent of my loss in the absence of his lordship, who I had been repeatedly told was one of the men in all Ireland the most able to give me a variety of useful information, with at the same time the most liberal spirit of communication.

WAITED on Mr. Robert Alexander, one of the principal merchants of Derry, who very obligingly took every means of procuring me such information as I wanted; rode with me to Loch Swilly for viewing the scene of the herring fishery, and, assisted by the Rev. Mr. Barnard, gave me the following particulars concerning it.

IN the barony of Innishoen, the courses are, 1. Barley eight barrels; 2. oats 10; 3. oats 6; 4. Lay for three years.

1. OATS. 2. Oats. 3. Oats. 4. Lay three years.

1. Potatoes on lay. 2. Barley. 3. Oats 10 barrels. 4. Oats 6. 5. Oats 5. 6. Lay three years.

1. Potatoes 10l. 2. Barley. 3. Oats. 4. Oats. 5. Flax, 4 cwt.

BARLEY the principal crop, and generally worth 5l. to 6l. Rent of the whole peninsula to Lord Donnegal 11,000l. and to the occupying tenant 22,000l. Th measure is the plantation acre; the bottoms of Innishoen 20s. an acre; the whole county of Donnegal not 1s. The linen is getting in but very slowly, but spinning very general, and the best yarn in all the north: they spin all their own flax, and generally into three hank yarn; which all goes to Derry, and from thence to Manchester. The spinners spin a hank a day: a pound of flax worth 6d. spins into three hanks, which sell at present at 1S. 9d. which is 5d. a day earning, but in common only 4d. Flax yields per acre scutched 3 cwt. at 6d. per lb. sells on foot at 6l. to 8l. expences per acre, scutching included, 5l. 14s.

THE isle of Inch belongs to Lord Donnegal; 300l. rent, and 6000l. fine, and the occupying tenants pay 1100l. a year, there are 2000 acres. The size of farms in Innishoen are from 10 to 20 acres, with a run on the mountains for cattle. They have lime stone in many parts of the country, shells in great plenty in the lochs, which sell at 3d. a barrel for burning into lime; other rotten shells in whole banks for manure, which they use much, laying 40 barrels per acre. The soil a slaty gravel mixed with clay, with springs; the effect of the shells not great, except upon mountain land drained, where they throw up white clover. There is a fall in the rent of lands in four or five years. Religion generally roman catholic. Sea weed much used for potatoes; and excellent for garden cabbages.

ROWED from Fawn to Inch island across the loch, the scenery amazingly fine, the lands everywhere high and bold, with one of the noblest outlines any where to be seen. Inch is a prodigiously fine extensive island, all high lands, with cultivation spreading over it, little clusters of cabbins, with groups of wood: the water of a great depth; and a safe harbour for any number of ships: here is the great resort of vessels for the herring fishery; it begins the middle of October, and ends about christmas; it has been five years rising to what it is at present; last year 500 boats were employed in it: the farmers and coast inhabitants build and send them out, and either fish on their own account, or let them; but the latter most common. Five men take a boat, each man half a share, each net half and the boat a whole one. A boat costs 10l. on an average, each has six stand of nets at 2l. In a middling year each boat will take 6000 herrings a night, during the season, six times a week, the price on an average 4s. 2d. a 1000 from the water, home consumption takes the most, and the shipping which lies here for the purpose the rest.

THE ships on the station for buying are from 20 to 100 tons, and have the bounty of 20s. a ton.

BY the act they are to be built since the year 1766, each has one or two boats for fishing; also for the first 20 tons they must have eight men, and two to every eight ton above 20. The merchants who have the ships, both buy of the country boats and fish themselves; they both cure for barrel and in bulk that is salted in the hold of a ship; a ton of salt will cure 10,000 herrings; 500 herrings in a barrel of those of Loch-swilly, but 800 at Killybegs. They made their own barrels of American staves, but now of fir; 1000 staves, Philadelphia, will make 8 ton or 64 barrels, and the price 6l. the 1000, making 11d. each barrel, 20 hoops to the barrel, at 6d.

  . s. d.
500 boats, last year, at five men 2500 0 0
Men on shore salting 300 0 0
In gutting, a little boy, 10 or 12 years
old, at a halfpenny a 100, will earn
10d. a day
60 ships, at 10 men 600 0 0

Twine of a 40s. stand of nets 20s. therefore 20s. for labour; 27lb. of flax, spun into 16 or 181b. of twine, make a stand.

MR. Alexander began the fishery in 1773, when he employed two sloops only, each of 40 tons. In 1774, he employed the two sloops and a brig of 100 tons, the latter of which he sent to Antigua with 650 barrels, besides what he sold at home, and loaded the in bulk for the coast trade. In 1775, he had the same brig and three sloops, and loaded all four in bulk for the coast trade; one of which on her voyage was put ashore at Black Sod, in the county of Mayo; and though the sloop was not the least injured, the country came down, obliged the crew to go on shore, threatening to murder them if they did not, and then not only robbed the vessel of her cargo, but of every portable material. The cargo was 40 ton, or 160,000 herrings. Besides what was sent coastwise this year, he exported on board his ship, the Alexander, 340 tons, not in the herring trade, 1750 barrels to the West-Indies. Here has been a vast encrease of the fishery in the hands of one person, which shews clearly what might be done if larger capitals were employed. Mr. Alexander was prevented last year from doing so much as he might have done, and what he did was at a very great expence for want of proper houses, which are not to be had on Loch Swilly; and in order to remedy this inconvenience, has this year, 1776, built on the point of Inch island, called the Downing, a complete salting-house, consisting of a range of houses for all the operations, divided into four apartments, one of 20 feet by 18 a store-room for coarse salt, which will hold 150 to 200 tons; another of the same dimensions for fine salt; a third for receiving the herrings from the boats and gutting them, of the same size; and a fourth for a cooper's shop. These apartments all communicate with a second range, 80 by 18, which is filled with vessels for striking the herrings, that is, putting them for salt for 10 or 12 days; this communicates with a third house, 80 by 14, in which the herrings, being taken from the vessels above mentioned, are barrelled and finished off for the ships. Besides these there is a dwelling house for the clerks, &c. of 28 by 14. All these buildings are substantially erected of stone, and covered with slate. The finishing-house contains the boats when not in use, and above it is a light loft for the nets. Over the curing-house is a large loft for the empty barrels; and over the cooper's shop are apartments for the workmen, and over the gutting-house is a hoop store. But the salt houses are filled to the roof. All these buildings Mr. Alexander expects to finish completely for 500l. In 1775 there were about 1800 barrels exported besides Mr. Alexander's. There were that year fish enough in the Loch for all the boats of Europe. They swarmed so, that a boat which went out at seven in the evening returned at a eleven full, and went out on a second trip. The fellows said it was difficult to row through them; and every winter the plenty has been great, only the weather not equally good for taking, which cannot go on in a stormy night. In the buildings above described Mr. Alexander will be able to save 100,000 herrings a day, which will take 10 tons of salt, 17 or 18 boats, and 90 men; six men to carry from boats to the gutting-house; 40 boys, women, and girls to gut; four to carry from gut-house to curing-house; 10 men first salting and packing; eight men to draw from the vessels, and carry to the barrelling-house; and 10 packing into barrels, which 10 packers will keep five coopers employed; six men more will be employed in ranging the barrels and pickling off; eight men more carrying to the ship's boats. If 100,000 herrings come in regularly every day, this would be the course of the business. The buildings are in fact, a market to the country boats to resort to every day to sell their herrings, as far as the quantity above-mentioned extends.

Calculation of the Expences of this Business, supposing 100,000 herrings cured every day.

  . s. d.
Buildings, 500l. interest of that sum, at 10 per cent. 50 0 0
This high rate of interest is reckoned on account of the precariousness of all herring fisheries, as they frequently forsake seas and bays; and if they were to quit Loch Swilly, the buildings would be of little use but to let for a trifle as cabbins.      
  . s. d.      
18 boat's, at 10l. 180 0 0      
90 stands of nets, at 40s. 180 0 0      
360 0 0      
Interest, at 6 per cent. 21 12 0
Repairing the boats, 40s. each 36 0 0
Ditto nets, they last but two seasons 90 0 0
Wages of 90 fishermen, at 1s. 6d. a day, 8 weeks 324 0 0
521 12 0
N. B. At this expence of fishing, the prime cost of the herrings, suppose 6000 taken by each boat a night, is 2s. per 1000: but it must be obvious that the boats cannot always go out, neither will hired men fish for their masters as they will for themselves. Hence the merchant may find it more advantageous to buy at 4s. 2d. than to depend entirely on his own boats.      
Wages of 52 men, at 1s. 1d. a day, 8 weeks 135 4 0
18 boats, 108,000 herrings a day, are 5,184,000; gutting af 5d. per 1000 108 0 0
Salt 10 tons per 100,000, or 518 tons, at 2l. 10s. for the curing house 1295 0 0
Salt 246 tons, 17cwt. at 2l. 10s. for the barrelling house 617 2 6
  . s. d.      
9,874 barrels, at 8 ton, or 64 barrels to the 1000 staves, will require 154,000 staves, at 7l. 1078 0 0      
164,000 hoops, at 30s. 246 0 0      
Making 1s. 2s. per barrel 575 19 8      
7 nails to every barrel, which is allowing one for accidents, 58,000, at 2s. 2d. 6 5 8      
1976 5 4
Prime cost, 9s. 5d. a barrel.      
4653 3 10
Freight of 9,874 barrels to the West Indies, at 3s. 4d. 1645 13 4
Duty on export, with gauger's fees, 9d. a barrel 370 5 6
6669 2 8
Insurance and commission, 3 per cent. on that sum 200 1 5
6869 4 1
Interest on that sum 8 months, at 6 per cent. 274 15 2
7143 19 3
The price in the West Indies rises from
20s. to 30s. sterling a barrel. Average
25s.—9,874 barrels at that rate
12342 10 0
Deduct expences 7143 19 3
Profit 5198 10 9
But as the herrings are not always to be taken in this manner, that is, 6000 a night by the merchants boats; it will be necessary to calculate the business in the more common way of carrying it on, by buying them of the country boats, at 4s. 2d. per 1000.      
Interest as before 50 0 0
Purchase of 5,184,000, at4s.2d. per 1000 1080 0 0
1130 0 0
Labour 135 4 0
Gutting 108 0 0
Salt 1912 2 6
Barrels 1976 5 4
Prime cost 5261 11 10
Freight 1645 6 8
Duty 370 5 6
7277 4 0
Insurance and commission 218 6 0
7495 10 0
Interest on that sum, at 6 per cent. for 8 months 299 17 2
7795 7 2
Prime cost in West Indies 15s. 9? d. a barrel.      
Sell at 12342 10 0
Expences 7796 7 2
Profit 4546 2 10
4546, on the expences of 7796, is 58 per cent.—bounty of 2s. a barrel 987 8 0
5533 10 10
HERE appears a very noble profit; but fishing upon paper is an easier business than upon Loch Swilly; and it is necessary to observe, that the merchant who engages in this fishery, must provide, if he fishes himself, boats, nets, salt, barrels, and stores, all which must be ready, though not a herring should come into the Loch, or though storms prevent a boat going out. He must also have the sum ready in his counting house for all the other expences, in case the fishery proves successful, which upon the whole are circumstances that make great profits necessary, or the business would not be undertaken at all.

The investment of 8000l. in this fishery employs,

  Men Ships Tons.
Fishermen 90 0 0
Gutters 40 0 0
Sundries 52 0 0
To bring the staves, a ship of 200 16 1 200
tons seamen      
764 tons of salt, 3 ships 50 3 764
9,874 barrels to the West Indies, 120 12 1234
1234 tons 12 ships      
  368 16 2198

Besides boat-building, net making, and coopers. And the 90 fishermen are a sure nursery of seamen; much of this great system of employment is in the depfh of winter, when not demanded for other purposes.

AUGUST 8th, left Derry, and took the road by Raphoe, to the Rev. Mr. Golding's at Clonleigh, who favoured me with much valuable information. The view of Derry, at the distance of a mile or two, is the most picturesque of any place I have seen; it seems to be built on an island of bold land rising from the river, which spreads into a fine bason at the foot of the town; the adjacent country hilly, the scene wants nothing but wood to make it a perfect landscape. Passing Raphoe, found the husbandry in the neighbourhood of Clonleigh as follows. The soil is for the most part light loamy land, with single large stones, and very wet with springs, with considerable tracts of bog. Rents are from 15s. to 20s. the Cunningham acre, and some to 25s. and about towns some up to 30s. and 40s. Average rent of the whole county not more than 1s. Farms vary from 5 to 40 acres, in general 25 or 30, very many from 7 to 10. They are lessened by the farmers dividing them among their children. They generally sow flax, dress and spin it in their families. When cloth sells well, they get it wove by the weavers, who are also little farmers. At other times they sell the flax in yarn at markets many of them never having any woven at all. The spinners in a little farm are the daughters and a couple of maid servants, that are paid 30s. a half year, and the common bargain is, to do a hank a day of 3 or 4 hank yarn. Much more than half the flax of the country is worked into cloth; a great deal of flax is imported at Derry, this country not raising near enough for its manufacture: their own is much the finest. Their tillage is exceeding bad, the land not half plouged, and they like to have much grass among the corn for improving the fodder. Their course is;

1. Potatoes on 3 years lay. 2. Barley 10 barrels. 3. Oats 5 to 12 barrels. 4. Oats. 5. Oats. 6. Lay for weeds 3 years.

1. Potatoes. 2. Barley. 3. Oats. 4. Oats. 5. Flax 480lb. clean scutched, or 30 stone.

THEY plant 14 measures, each 2 bushels of potatoe-seed an acre, the crop, from 8 to 12 score measures. The flax I saw was nothing but weeds and rubbish of all kinds, yet the crop itself had an appearance of being good, as if the land was not to blame. As to manuring, they use very little more than the trifle they make in their stable and cowhouse. A few use lime, but not many; the price is 10d. to 13d. a barrel: a little woollen cloth weaved, but not near enough to cloath themselves. They import a great deal from Galway. Land sells at 24 and 26 years purchase. Rents are very much raised; but they are fallen within four or five years; in 40 years conjecture that they are doubled. Tythes are compounded. Oats pay 5s. Barley 7s. Potatoes, flax, and hay, 5s. In some places potatoes free. Leases usually for three lives. Lord Abercorn only for 21 years and no lives, yet his estate is well cultivated. The farmers generally re-let some of their lands to cottars at a great increase of rent. The poor people live upon oatmeal, milk, potatoes, and herrings; but the poorest eat very little meat. A farmer of 10l. a year will have a good meal of beef or bacon every sunday: in general they all live much better than they did formerly. I remarked that the labourers carried with them to their work an oat cake and a bottle of milk. All their milk is kept till sower, till which they do not make butter. Scarce any such thing as wheeled cars in the country, they are all sliding ones: a wheeled one 35s. a sliding one 2s. 6d. A plough 10s. 6d. A harrow of wood 1s. 1d. The fuel all turf, and much of it made by hand; a poor man's is 100 barrels a year, and will cost him 35s. The common people exceedingly addicted to thieving.

BUILDING a cabbin 5l. they are all of stone, which is plentiful: clay-mortar instead of lime. Almost all the farmers have a man-servant at 1l. 10S. to 2l. the half year entirely employed in the farm. A farmer of 10l. a year always one. Very little cloth made farther than Ballymassey, but all over Donnegal much spinning.

THE county of Tyrone is various; the finest parts are about Dungannon, Stewart's Town, &c. on Lake Neagh. From Strabane to Omagh much good; from Omagh to Ardmagh all cultivated. From Strabane to Dungannon almost all mountains: rent of the whole 4s. The bishop of Raphoe is a considerable farmer, and cultivates and hoes turnips. The dean has also done the same.

MR. Golding has used much soapers waste, at 4d. a measure of two bushels, laid on cold morassy soils, and found the benefit very great; it brought up quantities of red clover, and destroys moss effectually. Turnips would do excellently here, as beef rises from one-penny three farthings in november, to three-pence halfpenny and four-pence in april. Mr. Golding has used scotch cabbages for bullocks; generally fats two beasts every year on them. Sows the seed early in august, and transplants them in april and may for succession; has had them in full in february and march; has tried spring sowings, but they do not come to more than 5 or 6lb. whereas the august sown plants rise to 35 lb. He has also fed sheep upon potatoes, buys them very forward in October, and puts them to his after-grass to keep their flesh, and in the severe weather gives them the potatoes with great success. He took the hint from seeing the sheep walk over the potatoe grounds, and scratching up the remaining roots in hard weather. The only evil resulting from the emigrations was, the money they carried away with them, which was considerable.

AUGUST 9th, to Convoy, where I was so unfortunate as to find Mr. Montgomery from home; passing on to Ballymaffey, I met that gentleman's oxen, drawing fledge cars of turf, single with collars, and worked to the full as well as the horses. They deserved wheels however. On the other side of Ballymaffey, it is curious to observe, how, as you advance towards the mountains, cultivation gradually declines, it is chequered with heath, till at last the heath is chequered with cultivation, spots of green, on the mountain sides, surrounded by the dreary wilderness; but there are no inclosures. The waste is exceedingly improvable; all the tract on the left before I came to the lake, and also beyond it, might easily be made excellent; it is bog, with a great fall every where, extends beyond the lake to the mountain foot, and is from 10 to 20 feet deep; rises in perfect hills, yet all bog. Lime is to be had here from 6d. to 8d. a barrel, six miles off. I had two accounts, one of 6d. and the other of 8d. but clayey gravel is to be had every where on the spot. The road leads across the bog, and is made of it. I remarked in several places, little bogs forming, spots of moss growing on the water, and in some places rotting, with other plants growing out of that. Cars may go three or four times a day for lime, and bring three barrels at a time. I was the more attentive to this bog, because it appeared to me to be one of the most improvable I had seen, and the size of it makes it an object worth the attention of some spirited improver; it is not every where that so decisive a fall is met with for rendering the drains effective; the distance from lime is advantageous. Suppose a car, 1s. a day, and to bring eight barrels, carriage of it then is 1d. a barrel, and suppose the lime 7d. in all 9.d. 160, at that price, comes to 6l. at which rate, I am clear, it would answer to lay any quantity on to such bogs as these. I had often heard of roads being made over such quaking bogs, that they move under a carriage, but could scarcely credit it; I was, however, convinced now; for, in several places, every step the horse set, moved a full yard of the ground in perfect heaves. Got to a miserable cabbin on the road, the widow Barclay's, which I had been assured was an exceeding good inn, but escaped without a cold, or the itch.

AUGUST 10th, got to Alexander Montgomery's, Esq; at Mount Charles, Lord Conyngham's agent, by breakfast; found he was so deeply engaged in the fisheries, on this coast, that I could not have got into better hands; with great civility he gave me every intelligence I wished; as an introduction to it, he took me a ride to the bays on the coast, where the fisheries are most carried on, particularly Inver bay, Macswine's bay, and Killibeg's bay. The coast is perfectly sawed by bays; the lands are high and bold, particularly about Killibegs, where the scenery is exceedingly romantic, and if the multiplicity of hills upon hills, and rocks, were planted, would be one of the most beautiful spots that can be imagined. The state of the fisheries may be judged from the number of boats employed in the several stations:

  1775 1776
Inverbay 52 72
Killibegs and Fintia 50 60
Tilin and Tawney 47 47
Bruckless 20 25
Boylagh and Rosses 50 50
Cloghanlee 18 18
Dunsanachly 20 25
Sheephaven 30 30
  287 327

IN Inverbay only of the above, there is a summer fishery for herrings, which begins the latter end of july, and ends the beginning of september. All the other places are winter fisheries, which begin in October, and end early in january, lasting eight weeks. Every boat costs 18l. to 20l. and has six shares of nets, at 3l. to 3l. 3s. each: the nets are all made of hemp, from the Baltic, which cost, dressed, 8d.. a pound, fit for spinning: 33 lb. of it in a share of nets: 4d. a pound paid for spinning it, or 11s. a share: weaving the nets 1d. a yard for one fling , or 63 meshes deep, 200 yards running measure, at that depth, in each share. Six hands in each boat, a skipper, and five men. In the common practice, a boat is divided into seven shares, the boat one; each net, half a one, and each man half: in which way they divide the produce, which vibrates between 10l. and 100l. average 35l. or per week 10s. a man. These boats belong, in general, to the common inhabitants of the country, farmers. &c. The other way of carrying the fishery on is, that those who have vessels on the bounty, fit them out at their own expence, and pay the skipper 1l. 11s. 6d. a month, and the common men 20s. a month; each a pair of trowsers, at 4s. 6d. feed them with as much potatoes, beef, and pork, as they will eat, and plenty of whiskey, which, all together, come to 20s. a month. The repairs of the boat and tackling are large, for all are built of fir, they come to 3l. per annum per boat, and the nets Mr. Montgomery uses two seasons, and then sells them for half price. In this manner of fishing, the boats catch each, on an average, 100,000 herrings, which is 1600 herrings a night, but the common boats of the country, not so well fitted up, take only 80,000. They are cured in bulk, that is packed into the holds of the vessels, from 20 to 100 tons each, and are sold all over the coast of Ireland. The quantity of salt necessary to the 80,000 herrings, which each boat catches, is seven tons, at the price of 2l. 14s. a ton; this is the price at which Mr. Montgomery sells, who has established considerable salt-works, making 456 tons annually, and has, by this means, reduced the salt from 3l. 10S. to 5l. down to 2l. 14s. The vessels employed on this fishery, for the bounty, are from 30 to 100 tons. A vessel of 100 tons, carries in bulk 500,000 herrings, or the produce of five boats; these calculations are in reference only to the average of nights and seasons; Mr. Nesbit's vessel, of 60 tons, has been loaded by four boats, in three nights, and Mr. Montgomery has taken 100,000 in one night, with two nets, but these are extraordinary instances. The parliamentary bounty is 20s. a ton, but there must be four men for the first 20 tons, and one for every 8 tons over, the owners of the vessels employ no more boats, than to enable them, by the crews, to draw the bounty; and what these men are not able to get, they buy of the country boats, at an average of 5s. a 1000, which all are clear, answers much better than having boats of their own.

Account of a vessel of 100 tons.

  . s. d.
Building 2 boats, at 19l. 38 0 0
N. B. The vessel of 106 tons, will be navigated by 7 men, as there must be 14, by the act, to draw the bounty; 7 men must be supplied by boats, which may be called 2.      
Nets 38 0 0
The boats are 19 to 21 feet keel, 7 feet 4 broad, and 3 feet 4 in depth. The nets are 120 fathom long at the rope, and 7 feet deep. 76 0 0
Interest of 76l. at 6 per cent. 4 10 0
Repairing of two boats 6 0 0
Ditto nets 4 10 0
Wages of twelve men at 20s. two months . 24 0 0      
Board ditto 24 0 0      
Trowsers 2 12 0      
Skippers extra 2 2 0 52 14 0
Purchase of 300,000 herrings, at 5s. N. B. The two boats are supposed to catch, each 100,000, remain therefore for the cargo 300,000 75 0 0
Forty tons of salt, at 54s. 108 0 0
Packing, salting, &c. four men, at 1s. a day, 48 days 9 12 2
260 6 0
If vessels are hired to carry them to markets, the price is 5d. a 100 for freight, or 4s. 2d. a 1000, and 104l. 3s. 2d. per cargo for 100 tons 104 3 2
364 9 2
Insurance, 1 per cent. on 300l. 4 10 0
Supercargo 20 0 0
388 19 2
Interest on that sum for six months, at 6 per cent. 11 15 0
400 14 2
At the ports they sell from 10s. to 35s. per 1000, on an average at 23s. a 1000, 500,000 at that price. 575 0 0
Expences 400 14 2
Profit 43 per cent. 174 5 10

AND this account extends only six months from the first expenditure of the money, to the receipt from the cargo. If the vessel is the merchant's own, then the account will be as follows:

    . s. d.
Expences as above   260 6 0
Building, rigging, and fitting
out a vessel of 100 tons,
700l. interest of which,
at 6 per cent.
42 0 0        
A year's pay of the captain, at 4l. a month 48 0 0        
Six men at 30s. 99 0 0        
Repairs and outsets, 10s. a ton 50 0 0        
Stores for seven men, at 15s. a month 63 0 0        
Per annum 302 0 0        
Which for five months 125 10 0        
Ded. The bounty 100 0 0              
Fees and charges 5 0 0 95 0 0   30 10 0
Expences               290 16 0
4 10 0              
Insurance cargo, 1 per cent.                    
Ditto on ship 10 10 0         15 0 0
  305 16 0
Interest on that sum, for six months,
at 6 per cent
  9 3 0
  314 19 0
Produce   575 0 0
Expences   314 19 0
Profit   260 1 0

Here appears to be a loss of 28 per cent. by accepting the bounty: but the explanation of this lies in the difficulty of being sure of a vessel on freight, this is not always certain, which induces them to build, though freighting those of other people is so evidently cheaper. Respecting the mode of taking the fish, the boats, as before mentioned, are provided with all the accoutrements necessary; and here it will be proper to mention an improvement of Mr. Montgomery's, by which he has saved greatly: in common the nets are tanned with bark, but he mixes tar and fish oil, five parts of tar, and one of oil, melted together, to incorporate thoroughly, and while quite hot, puts the nets into a tub, and pours it upon them, in quantity sufficient to wet them; draws it off by a hole at the bottom of the tub, immediately, in order that too much of it may not stick, and make them clammy, which would be the case, if it cooled on them; at the bottom of the tub should be an open false bottom, or the nets will stop the hole, and the mixture will not run off free enough. By means of this simple operation, the nets are prevented from rotting, and the fishermen are saved the trouble of ever spreading and drying them, which in common is done every day, and is a great slavery in the short days; the benefit has been found so great, that almost all the country has come into it, and every net on the coast would, this year, have been done, but the scarcity of the tar, owing to the American war, prevented it. In working the nets also, Mr. Montgomery has made improvements; he has found that corking the line under the strapped buoys is wrong, as it keeps it in an uneven direction; he has a vacancy of corks for three fathom on each side the buoy line, but the middle spaces corked thick, which he finds to answer exceedingly well. He remarks that the fishery suffers very much, for want of an admiral being appointed, as in Scotland, to hear and determine differences; there is no order or regularity kept up, but much disturbance and loss for want of it. In the sale of the herrings, the merchant suffers greatly, by the competition of the Gottenburg and Scotch fishery. At Corke, great quantities of Gottenburg herrings are imported, which, though they pay a duty of 4s. a barrel, yet, as 2s. 4d. is drawn back on the re-exportation, and with an advantage of packing the herrings, of 20 Gottenburg barrels, into 25 Irish ones, and consequently having the drawback on 25, though the duty is only paid on 20, with all these circumstances, great quantities of them are sent to the West-Indies, to the prejudice of the Irish fishery. Another mischief is, that though there is a bounty of 2s. 4d. a barrel exported, yet such are the fees, and old duty, that the merchant receives only 11d. and that so clogged and perplexed with forms and delays, that not many attempt to claim it. The drawback on the foreign herrings is paid immediately on the merchants oath, but the Irish bounty not till the ship returns, with I know not how many affidavits and certificates from consuls and merchants, it may be supposed perplexing when it is not claimed. The Scotch have a bounty per barrel, on exportation, which they draw on sending them to Ireland, by which means they are enabled, with the assistance of a higher bounty on their vessels, to undersell the Irish fishery in their own markets, while the Irish merchant is precluded from exporting to either Scotland or England; this is a very hard case, and certainly may be said to be one of the oppressions on the trade of Ireland, which a legislature, acting on liberal and enlarged principles, ought to repeal. The trade of smoaking herrings, which is considerable in England, might be carried on here, to much greater advantage, if there was wood to do it with. In the Isle of Man they have smoak-houses, supplied with wood from Wales; it is a strange neglect, that the landlords do not plant some of the monstrous wastes in this country with quick growing copse wood, which would, in five or six years, enable them to begin the trade. The plenty of cod on this coast is very great, quite from Hornhead to Mount Charles, in winter, when the herrings set in, and may then be taken in any quantities. Some wherries come for cod, ling, glassen, &c. all which are plentiful; but on the banks they are to be taken in summer, and in the winter they follow the herrings.

IN all the bays on the coast, in march and april, there are many whales, the bone sort; they appear on the coast in february, and go off to the northward the beginning of may; sometimes they are in great plenty, and in november to february, there are many spermaceti whales; this induced Thomas Nesbit, Esq; of Kilmacredon, to enter into a scheme for establishing a fishery on the coast, and in executing it, was the inventor of the gun harpoon. Mr. Nesbit first used the gun harpoon for killing whales, in the year 1759; he was induced to try this, from great difficulties he met with among the harpooners, who he had engaged for the fishery; in this year he began it, with firing lances at them, after they were struck by the hand, in order to kill them the sooner. From this he passed, in 1761, to firing the harpoon itself from the gun. He was then engaged with a company, for the purpose of carrying on the fishery, with several persons in Ireland, England, and the West-Indies. In the year 1758, he went to London, and bought a vessel of 140 tons, and engaged persons to come over as harpooners. In 1759, one whale was caught by the hand harpoon. In 1760, the Greenland harpooners, Dutch, English, Scotch, and Danes, were at it, and not one fish taken. This year there were several Greenland ships on the coast, not one of whom caught a fish. In 1761, with the gun harpoon, killed three whales, and got them all; after which he every year killed some, except one year, when he killed 42 sun fish in one week, each of which yielded from half a ton, to a ton of oil. Mr. Nesbit has since given it up, not from want of success in the mode of taking the whales, but from being put, by his partners, for want of knowledge in the business, to useless expences. From many experiments, he brought the operation to such perfection, that, for some years, he never missed a whale, nor failed of holding her by the harpoon: he had for some time ill success, from firing when too near, for the harpoon does not then fly true, but at 14 or 15 yards distance, which is what he would chuse, it flies strait; has killed several at 25 yards.

WHEN the harpoon is fired into the whale, it sinks to the bottom with great velocity, but immediately comes up, and lays on the surface, lashing it with tail and fins for half or three quarters of an hour, in which time he fires lances into it, to dispatch it, and when killed, it sinks for 48 hours, where he leaves a boat, or a cask, as a buoy to mark the place, to be ready there when the whale rises, that they may tow it into harbour, according as the wind lays. To carry on this business here, he knows from experience, that nothing more would be wanting, than a ship of 130 tons, with 100 tons of cask: three boats, with each 8 men, six to row, one to steer, and one with the gun, with ropes, harpoon, lances, &c. the whole very much inferior to the expence of equipping a Greenlandman.

IN respect to the linen manufacture, it consists in all this country in spinning yarn only. Very little cloth woven here, except for the use of the people. They raise flax enough for their spinning in years when seed is plentiful and dry seasons, but some are so wet as almost to spoil the crop: all the women, and children of ten years old and upwards spin. They very seldom let the seed ripen; they have tried it, but found it did not answer so well as foreign seed, It is computed that there are two spinners in every family, who spin about one hank a day, or a spangle and a half a week; the medium is 2 lb. to the spangle, or 4 hanks, which is half a pound of flax each day. A woman will earn, by spinning, according to the price of flax and yarn, from 2d, to 6d. but in general 2d. or 3d. besides doing little family trifles, Most of the yarn goes to Derry.

THE soil about Mount Charles is various; a great deal of stiff blue clay, which is perfectly tenacious of water. Much bog, and a great range of high mountains near it, which break the clouds with a westerly wind, and occasions much rain. Rents per acre, are from 5s. to 10s. 6d. arable, some up to 1l. 1s. wastes 2s. 6d. to 3s. 6d. inclosed. Mountains pay some rent, but not by the acre. The whole county through does not let for above 2s. 6d. There are very great extents of mountain all the way from Mount Charles to Ards, by Loch Fin, which is 30 Irish miles in a right line; it is range of mountains, but most of the valleys are slightly cultivated, though corn does very bad in them from the wetness of the climate. The farms arise from 5 or 6 acres to 30 cultivated; but mountain farms are more extensive. The courses: 1. Potatoes, manured for with dung, or by the coast with sea weed; get good crops, and from the sea weed rather better than from dung. 2. Barley, if the land is good. 3. Oats. 4. Lay out for grass; very few sow grass seeds 2 or 3 years.

1, Potatoes . 2. Oats. 3. Lay out for grass 2 or 3 years.

UPON dry land they use lime, which is sold at 6d. to 8d. the barrel of 28 gallons, or 3 bushels and a half, but generally burn it themselves. There is lime-stone at St. John's Point, and other parts towards Killibegs, and beyond it to the westward. They burn it with turf, which is plentiful every where. They have grey marle near Donnegal, and find a good effect from the use of it. Upon the dry mountains they have flocks of sheep, not large ones; but every poor man keeps some, the wool their profit, and sell them at 2 or three years old. In stocking a farm they look not farther than having the horses and cows. Land sells at 21 or 22 years purchase, rack rent; it sold better from 1762 to 1768, and the rents are salient. For two years they have. been, at a stand; but the fall has not been felt near the coast, the herring fishery keeping them up. The farmers here in general pay half a year's rent with fish, and half with yarn. Tythes are generally compounded in the gross. The middle men were common, but not now. The poor people live upon potatoes and herrings, 9 months in the year along the coast, and upon oat bread and milk the other three. Very little butter, and scarce any meat. They all keep cows, most of them a pig or two, and a few hens, and all a cat or a dog. No tea. They are in general circumstances not improved. Rent of a cabbin, with a garden and a cow's grass, 20 or 30s.

A farm of 20 acres.

1 Potatoes. 1. Flax. 5. Oats. 1. Barley. 2. Mowing ground. 9. Feeding. Rent 10. Six cows, 2. horses, 6 sheep, 2 pigs. People increase. But little emigration. Religion more than half catholic. Rise in the price of labour 1d. a day in 20 years; and in provisions, one third in that time. The following is a return of population, procured by Colonel Burton's orders, on a part of Lord Conyngham's estates.

  Manor of Mount Charles.
County of Donegal, 15,000 acres.
Manor of Magherymore.
Ditto county.
Particulars of part of
Manor of Shana Golden.
County of Limerick, 4,500 acres.
Number of heads of families. 601 699 367 282
Wives. 521   320  
Sons grown up to 14. 322   244  
Other children. 1478   1047  
Man servants. 127   45  
Maid servants. 105   42  
Total. 3154 3887 2065 1460
Protestants. 1138 737 302  
Papists. 2016 3150 1763  

Cars generally sliding ones, on account of the hills.

EXPENCE of building a mud cabbin 3l. of stone and slate 40l. In different places in Lord Conyngham's estate in Boylagh are many lead mines mixed with silver, none of them wrought; miners who have examined them say there is much silver in the ore. The lead is apparent in many breaches of the rocks.

Arthur Young, A Tour in Ireland, made in the years 1776, 1777, and 1778 (London: T. Cadell, 1780)

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