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diminishes their own happiness, that roguery, in in this stage is cheered by the occasional visits every case, is a losing game. When we have of a teacher who gives him plain and practical done this, and when we have placed the means instruction and who encourages every germ of of obtaining an honest living in their hands, we effort which he may put forth to attain to a better may reasonably expect that our work will be understanding of his duties, and to a better reguaccomplished, and that our criminals will be re-lation of his conduct. He is in this stage under a turned to society better men and useful citizens. very rigid coercion, but there is still considerable Again, we have the large class whose crimes are scope left to him for the exercise and discipline attributable to feebleness of the will. In these of his volitions. He can violate the rule which cases the indication is to strengthen its power. imposes silence. He may fail to accomplish his The space-penetrating power of the sailor's and appointed daily task. He may waste the material the hunter's eye is enlarged by the constant upon which he is set to work. He may use abuuse of the organ; the muscles of the ballet sive language to his keeper or teacher. He may dancer's legs and of the blacksmith's arms are neglect personal cleanliness, and in several other enlarged and strengthened by constant exercise; ways he may manifest a defiant and unsubdued the brain of the philosopher is enlarged in volume spirit. An accurate set of daily marks is kept and in power by habitual and vivid thought, and showing the exact progress of the prisoner in selfsuch is the universal law of nature. It is as true control which it is the main object of this stage in the moral as in the physical world, and a of imprisonment to cultivate. When the prisoner course of moral gymnastics will be found as enters the solitary cell he learns that the duration efficient in invigorating the affections as physical of his imprisonment will be determined by his gymnastics are in increasing the force of the obtaining a certain number of marks. Every day muscles. The method to be adopted in these of perfect good behavior adds to the amount of cases is not to subject the prisoner to a rigid ex- the marks. Every day of misconduct not only ternal coercion, which supersedes all necessity of gives no addition to the sum of marks, but in volition on his part, and which actually paralyzes proportion to its malignity the marks already the small amount of will power that he actually accumulated are taken away. In this way the possesses, but he will be subjected at first duration of this penal stage is fixed by the prisonto small and nicely-graduated temptations, er himself. If disposed to be rebellious, he can which, if yielded to, is met with immediate and indulge in his disposition as long as he likes, if he just punishment. As the prisoner gradually ac- desires to protract his term of discomfort, his quires the mastery over himself, under this pro- keeper is quite patient and allows him to do so, cess, the temptations are increased and the process but after a while, when he sees one after another is continued until at last the power of resisting who entered the prison passing into higher and temptation is fully acquired. The practical modes less penal stages of imprisonment, the most hardby which these objects are accomplished were ened and rebellious finally yield and set themoriginally suggested by Captain Maconchie, but selves in good earnest for the first time to cultivate were greatly improved and simplified by Sir habits of obedience and self-control. When these Walter Crofton, under whose auspices the system habits are acquired, and not until then, he passes was brought into operation in the Irish prisons. into the second stage Here he is situated, The result in these prisons has for a series of in many respects, like the prisoners in our State years been so successful and so truly reformatory, prisons, he is confined in a solitary cell at night, even when applied to the very worst of men, that but during the day he works in association with it has overcome all opposition and has commended other prisoners. The utmost attention is paid in itself to the approval of all thinking men. Sir this stage to his moral and intellectual training. Walter has recently been transferred to England, He is supplied with books of an interesting and where, under the full sanction of the gov- instructive character. The utmost care is taken ernment, he is gradually introducing the system to ascertain the weak points of his character, which has proved to be so successful in Ireland. which have led him into crime, and the main The Irish system, as this is called, may be briefly stress of the instruction and discipline is directed described as follows: There are certain general to strengthen and vivify these weak faculties. features in the plan which are applicable to all Competent teachers are employed to instruct him prisoners of all kinds, classes and idiosyncrasies, in all those matters which will fit him to acquit but these are modified with respect to intensity and duration, so as to adapt themselves to the specialties and individualities of each particular case. Every part of it is carefully adjusted to cultivate habits of self-control on the part of the prisoner; his treatment is exactly determined by his own conduct, and he is thus, to a very considerable extent, made the arbiter of his own fate. Every prisoner passes through four separate stages, each stage being divided into steps. The first stage is in the highest degree penal, and is an object of great dread to all classes. Each prisoner is confined in perfect solitude in a separate cell. He is kept constantly to the hardest labor, dressed in the coarsest raiment and fed on the most unsavory food. Yet his solitude even

himself well in the battle for life by honest and reputable methods. This stage is divided into three classes, and the prisoner, on emerging from the penal stage, enters the third and lowest class. His continuance in each of these classes is gradu ated by his own progress; he must remain in each until he has acquired the amount of knowl edge and the system of habits which that class is designed to inculcate. If he is long in doing this, his stay is long. If he does it quickly, he soon rises into a higher class and remains in this until he has fully acquired all that the discipline of that class is intended to accomplish, when he enters the first or highest class, where the same process is repeated. The powerful influence of Hope is thus brought into exercise. He has a

In Ireland it is decreasing. With us, as we have shown, our prisons do not deter men from the commission of crime. In Ireland, they are really a terror to evil doers and they furnish a real protection to life and property. With us, our pris

definite object constantly before him, knowing, been most thorough, and all classes are convinced that good conduct will certainly work an amelio- of their reliability. With us crime is increasing. ration of his condition, he has a powerful motive for good conduct constantly operating on him. On the other hand, he knows that every act will demonstrate that those changes in his character, which the discipline was intended to produce, have not been effected, and that it will be neces-ons are not reformatory, at least to any very sary to put him backward until the change is great extent. In Ireland, they are truly reformacompletely accomplished. His daily improvement tory. It is rare to find a man who has once gone or deterioration is admirably measured by a sys- through their discipline, who ever returns to tem of marks. If these show that the prisoner them again, they are better men when they leave is advancing, he is advanced; if he is going back them than they were when they entered them. ward, he is put backward. He cannot advance. Mr. Chairman, I suppose there can be no differuntil he has actually and permanently acquired ence of opinion amongst us, with respect to our all the discipline, which the stage through which duty to provide the best guarantees in our power he is passing is calculated to confer upon him. for the security of life and property in this State, At every advance his condition is improved, his and the reformation of our criminal classes. Can comforts are increased, he has a larger percent- any one doubt that a comparison between our sysage of his earnings credited to him, and he has a tem and that of Sir Walter Crofton shows the very greater area of personal privileges allowed to great and overwhelming superiority of the latter? him. He is also subjected to greater temptations, If we are agreed upon these points, then we can. and he cannot rise until he has acquired the not adopt the latter system without a change in power of resisting them. The third is called the our constitutional provisions. We must exclude intermediate stage because it is intermediate be-all chance of those rapid changes which are now 1.ween imprisonment and freedom. They are necessarily incident to every change in politics, under very little restraint, although they are care- and even to every change in the persons of the fully watched in this stage; they are not taken inspectors. The subordinate officers must be reout in gangs, under keepers, but allowed to work on farms, in mechanical labor, on railroads or canals, as may be desired, and are credited with a large percentage of their earnings. The education commenced in the earlier stages is continued through this; lectures on practical subjects by able men are given to them daily. Examinations are held weekly among themselves, which bring out the mental acquisitions of each prisoner, and a small part of their earnings is handed over to them, which they can spend as they please, but which they generally save carefully to be added to the savings which are given to them when the term of their imprisonment is wholly accomplished. Mr. BELL-I would like to ask the gentleman It must not be forgotten that if the prisoner from Columbia [Mr. Gould] what has been the abuses his increased liberties, he may at any pecuniary success of the Irish system? time be set back, one or two classes or a whole Mr. GOULD-I am not able to state. I was stage, from whence he must work his way back not able to obtain the figures in time so as to by the same slow and painful process as he did make a statement which could be verified by the before. When the prisoner seems to have ac-figures, but I think it has been a pecuniary sucquired the knowledge and the habits of self-con- cess under Sir Walter Crofton. trol which fit him to mingle usefully with society, Mr. LAPHAM-I would ask whether the syshe enters the fourth stage, in which he receives tem of punishment is uniform under the Irish a conditional pardon and a ticket-of-leave. He system, without any reference to the grade of is allowed to select his own place of residence the offense? and his own occupation; but he is still under Mr. GOULD-The system is this: If a man the inspection of the police, and if at any time he commits an offense, a punishment is annexed to is found to abuse his privliges, if he relapses into that. Suppose it is for six months. Now, a perhis old ways, if he is found without visible son who has only six months to serve, has not so means of support, or associating with suspicious many marks to gain. The number of marks is characters, his ticket-of-leave is withdrawn and graduated to the length of punishment. For inhe is returned either to the second or third stages stance, a man who has been guilty of a serious to work his way out as before. The practical re- crime, which would justify a large number of sults of the system have been most extraordi- years of punishment, would be required to get a nary. Experience has set its seal upon its value. greater number of marks, so that the system With us it is very difficult to procure employment actually graduates itself according to the severity for such convicts as have given the best evidence of the offense. But the system is that no man of a desire to reform. In Ireland there is no shall go out of one department into another until class who can so easily obtain employment. The the moral and intellectual objects to be desired reason for this is, that with us the reformation in that branch are entirely gained.

tained so long as they perform their duties well, since every year will add to their ability. It will be seen at a glance that unity of plan and purpose is indispensable to the working of the scheme, and I think I have clearly shown that no board can possibly be held to a strict responsibility, or can direct any complicated system which requires unity of purpose for its successful prosecution. We have, therefore, to choose between a truly reformatory system of prison discipline and the plan of the majority, or one which will perpetuate the present admitted evils and the plan of the minority.

has not been tested. In Ireland the tests have Mr. LAPHAM-Suppose it was a case of sen

tence for imprisonment for life-what is the value of the system in that case?

Mr. GOULD-The value of the system in that case is that there is a special adaptation to the circumstances of the individual, and that is all there is about it in that case. Our system is uniform. Very bad and tolerably decent men are not placed upon the same system exactly. There is a flexibility, an adaptation of the system to the individualities of the case. Every man, whatever his character, whatever his disposition, is not subject to precisely the same discipline, but there is an individualization.

Mr. HAND-I would ask if the punishment is modified according to the good behavior in cases of imprisonment for life, or only in cases for a series of years?

Mr. GOULD-No, sir, in that case it is not so. Mr. HAND-There is no encouragement, then? Mr. GOULD-The only case where it is is where the prisoner is committed for life, and that involves the adoption of a discipline according to the particular circumstances of the individual.

Mr. KINNEY-I would like to inquire if the decrease of the percentage of crime in Ireland is not greater than the decrease of population. I suppose the gentleman is aware that the population there is decreasing largely.

Mr. GOULD-It is slightly so. I only claim that there is this very marked difference between Ireland and other countries in regard to prison discipline. There is one peculiarity which gentlemen should not overlook-and that is that the men who come out of prison are eagerly sought for as farm servants, because the discipline which they had undergone admirably fits them for an honest and faithful discharge of the duty. I will further remark that Sir Walter Crofton, who was the originator of this system, was so successful in Ireland that he has now been transferred by the British Government to England, for the purpose of introducing the system throughout the length and breadth of that kingdom. Now, sir, I believe I have really finished all that I desire to say. We cannot have this system administered by a board. We may, it is true, nominally have a board. There is nominally a board which has charge of the penitentiary at Albany, but the fact is that

Mr. C. C. DWIGHT—I would like to ask the gentleman who it is that administers the system of prison discipline? Whether it is the central power that appoints the wardens, or whether it is the wardens?

Mr. GOULD-If the gentleman is disposed to be nice upon this point, I will say it is the under-keeper who administers the discipline.

Mr. C. C. DWIGHT-I would ask if Amos Pillsbury is not responsible for the administration of the discipline in the Albany penitentiary?

does precisely what he likes without any interference whatever. I believe that there is also a board of prisons in Ireland; but they never interfered with Sir Walter Crofton. He has done precisely as he pleased.

Mr. C. C. DWIGHT-I would like to ask whether the board of prisons in Ireland did not appoint Sir Walter Crofton to his position to administer the system of discipline of which he was the originator?

Mr. GOULD-My impression is that he was himself a member of that board. As he de. veloped a special fitness and capacity for the work, the other members just stood aside and allowed him to carry out his views entirely in his own way, so that the matter was practically managed by a single man. I believe I have presented all the views I desire. If we really do desire to make a permanent advance, if we desire to do a genuine, philanthropic work, if we desire to have our prisoners converted into good men, I see no way whatever of accomplishing it unless we change entirely the system which has been hitherto made use of, and unless we carry out the principles of responsibility, unless we have a man to do the work who is specially adapted by the peculiar character of his mind and the peculiar education which he has enjoyed. Sir, gentlemen ask if I know of any man who could be trusted with this matter. I know of a man, I have him in my eye, and he does not belong to the same political party that I do either, whom I should be perfectly willing to intrust with the control of this system, because I should be sure that he would administer it with perfect humanity, and I have no doubt he would do it with perfect success.

Mr. BELL-I would ask the gentleman another question. Does the plan proposed by the majority of the committee propose to introduce the Irish system or any system?

Mr. GOULD-It does intend to lay the foundation for it. The Irish system will be introduced by the Legislature if it is introduced at all.. All we can do in the Constitution is to lay the foundation for the introduction of a system analogous to the Irish system.

Mr. BELL-It looks to that end.

Mr. AXTELL-I move that the committee do now rise, report progress, and ask leave to sit again. SEVERAL DELEGATES-No, no, no.

The question was put on the motion of Mr. Axtell, and, on a division, it was declared lost by a vote of 12 ayes-the noes not counted.

The CHAIRMAN announced the pending question to be on the substitute offered by Mr. C. C. Dwight, for the first section of the majority report.

Mr. C. C. DWIGHT-If there is no other member of the Committee who desires to speak upon the pending question, I desire to say a few words in reply to the gentleman from Columbia [Mr. Gould].

Mr. GOULD-That is another thing altogether. The gentleman did not ask me who was responsible; he asked me who it was that administered Mr. FOLGER-If the gentleman will allow the discipline, and I say it is the under-keeper. me, I will renew the motion that the committee As I was remarking, the Albany penitentiary is do now rise, report progress, and ask leave to sit nominally governed by a board, but the fact is again.

that Mr. Pillsbury is the sole dictator. The The question was put on the motion of Mr. board never interferes in a single instance. He Folger, and it was declared carried.

Whereupon the committee rose and the PRESIDENT resumed the chair in Convention.

Mr. COMSTOCK-I respectfully dissent from that view. I think we have a right to perfect the substitute before we vote upon it.

Mr. S. TOWNSEND, from the Committee of the Whole, reported that the committee had had The CHAIRMAN-The Chair rules that it is under consideration the report of the Committee the right of the committee to perfect the propoon State Prisons, and the Prevention and Punish-sition before it is voted upon; and it therefore ment of Crime, had made some progress therein. entertains the amendment offered by the genbut, not having gone through there with, had in-tleman from Steuben [Mr. Rumsey]. structed their chairman to report that fact to the Convention, and ask leave to sit again.

The question was put on granting leave, and it was declared carried.

Mr. BARTO-I move that we adjourn until Monday evening, at 7 o'clock.


The PRESIDENT-The Chair thinks that the motion

Mr: ALVORD-Does the Chair understand my position? My position is, that there is an attempt now, by the amendment of the gentleman from Steuben, to amend the substitute offered by the gentleman from Cayuga [Mr. C. C. Dwight] before that has been accepted by the commit


Mr. C. C. DWIGHT-Do I understand that an amendment has been offered to my ameud

Mr. HITCHCOCK-I move that we now ad- ment? journ.

Mr. RUMSEY-I withdraw my amendment, if The question was put on the motion of Mr. the gentleman wishes to speak upon the substiHitchcock, and it was declared lost. tute he has offered.

Mr. FOLGER-I move that we take the usual

recess, until 7 o'clock this evening.

Mr. C. C. DWIGHT-I desire to ask the indulgence of the committee for a few minutes, while

The question was put on the motion of Mr. I make some reply to the remarks of the gentleFolger, and it was declared carried.

So the Convention took a recess.


man from Columbia [Mr. Gould], the chairman of he standing committee. I wish to preface this reply by saying that in all that gentleman has said in regard to the weakness, the short-cominga

The Convention re-assembled at seven o'clock aud the faults of the present system of manage

P. M.

Mr. AXTELL-I ask for the calling of the


Mr. SEAVER-I move that the Convention do now adjourn.

The question was put on the motion to adjourn, and, on a division, it was declared lost, by a vote of five ayes; noes not counted.

The Convention then resolved itself into Committee of the Whole, on the report of the Committee on State Prisons, their care and mauagement, Mr. S. TOWNSEND, of Queens, in the chair.

The CHAIRMAN announced the pending question to be upon the motion of Mr. C. C. Dwight to substitute the first two sections of the minor ity report for the first section of the majority report.

Mr. AXTELL-I move that the Committee rise, report progress, and ask leave to sit again.

The question was put on the motion of Mr. Axtell, and it was declared lost.

Mr. RUMSEY-I move to amend the section by striking out "five" as the number of the commissioners, and inserting in lieu of it "three;" so that there may be three commissioners; the tenor of their office being nine years, electing one every three years.

Mr. ALVORD-I rise to a point of order; that we cannot amend the substitute offered by the gentleman from Cayuga [Mr. C. C. Dwight] because it is not before us except in the shape of an amendment. It has not been passed upon by the committee. We must first take the question on substituting it for the original proposition of the majority of the committee, which is the matter now under discussion, and then we shall have a right to amend it; but we have no right to amend it before we adopt it.

ment of our State prisons, L entirely concur with him. I go as far as he goes on that question. And in all that he has said in regard to the necessity for a radical reform in the system of management at present existing in this State, I go as far as he goes. I will say further that in all that the gentleman has said here this morning in eulogy of the Irish system of prison discipline, I go as far as he goes. I think that system is a better one even than the gentleman has represented it here. In many respects, in many of its details, I understand that it operates more favorably than the gentleman has represented. But I do not propose to-night to discuss that system. I only desire to say that all that the gentleman has said in favor of the Irish system, makes for the plan of prison organization which I have Had the honor to submit. The Irish system, although it may not be in all its details entirely conformable to our institutions and our systems of government, is yet, I believe, by far the most advanced, the most philanthropic, the most enlightened system which is to-day in practical operation anywhere on the globe. I claim for the plan of organization submitted by me, that it is the only plan of organization which can be expected to secure the advantages of the Irish system, or any thing of equal value. I call the attention of this Convention to the fact that it is a dangerous thing to put at the head of this great system of prison discipline and management, a single man, who may ride a hobby other than the Irish system through all these institutions. It is a dangerous thing to put in this place of power and responsibility one man, who may prefer the Irish system even to a better one. The Irish system is not necessarily the ultimate attainment of human wisdom upon this question. There may be improvements upon even that system; and I should hesitate long to put in the control of the prisons of this State, a

ship stands the company of owners, or the directors of the company, to direct all her voyages and her ventures. And we know that behind the superintendent who runs the factory, stands the board of directors of the company who own the factory. I ask, who ever heard of a single man put over the captain of a ship, a single man put over the superintendent of a factory, or a single man put over the general of an army? That, as I attempted to show in the outset of the discussion, is the weakness of the gentleman's plan, and there is no parallel for it. If these prisons constituted, in any sense, a unity, as an army is composed of its parts as one whole, there would be some force in it; but there is no such connection. They are totally distinct and separate, and at the head of each of them both of our plans would place a warden, who should be made the one sole responsible head of that institution. There is a good deal of force in the comparison of a prison to a factory, for a prison is a factory. It is more than that-it is a collection of factories, The prison at Auburn consists of six or eight large manufacturing establishments, each of them employing from fifty to a hundred and fifty stalwart mechanics in various branches of mechanical industry, and they constitute a collection of manufacturing establishments. At the head of each is the keeper, who controls the discipline of the shop; in each is a foreman who directs the mechanical operations of the men; and over the whole of these factories, thus associated together, we place the warden, who per sonally superintends and governs the whole. But the prison is not merely a collection of factories: it is a community of a thousand to sixteen hundred human beings, with interests and needs physical, mental and moral, of great and pressing importance. I say that behind and over the warden, who governs that community, who is absolute in his sphere as the head of that institution, I would have a body of men who possess wisdom, intelligence, experience and philanthropy enough to know whether he discharges his duties as he ought to do. The gentleman says he would have an undivided responsibility; that he would make the superintendent responsible. I ask the gentleman, responsible to whom?

man who might make a hobby of the Irish sys-kuow that behind the captain who commands the tem, and ride it through all these institutions, to the disparagement and neglect of a system which might be a vast improvement upon it. But all that the gentleman has said on that point, his whole argument, has made for the plan of organization which I have submitted. What I want, as I said in my opening upon that question, is a body of men of so much wisdom, so much experience, so much ability, that they can devise and institute the best system, whatever it is; of discrimination sufficient to select from all the systems which are before the world the best system, or to select the best features of the best systems, and to make a new one, if possible, which shall be better than any now existing. One man cannot override the counsels of such a body with a hobby. I go quite as far as the gentleman goes in advocacy of a single individual responsibility in the management of these prisons. But where will you have that responsibility? I insist that the only place to have it is in the warden, at the head of each of these institutions. How is it to-day? Any man who lives near a State prison, or has had any experience or opportunity of observing them-I ask him where the responsibility is now placed. With the very imperfect authority lodged at present in the hands of the warden, the management of each prison is yet in his hands, and rightly so. To-day the inspectors appoint every officer of the prison, from the warden down to the guard that tends the gate; and the warden has no power to remove these officers, even for the grossest misconduct; and yet we now hold the warden responsible for the management of the prison. So it must always be, either under the system proposed by myself, or under that reported by the gentleman from Columbia [Mr. Gould]. We both give the warden the appointment of his subordinate officers, and the removal of any and every one of them at his pleasure. Can there be any question, then, that it will be the warden of the prison that will be held responsible for its management? Can there be any question that the warden ought to be held responsible for its management? I observed that the argument of the gentleman for a single individual responsibility had its effect upon the committee. I desire that it should. I desire it should have the utmost effect; for that argument is in favor of the system I propose. As I said in the opening of this discussion, there is no such thing as a system of prisons in the State of New York. Each of these prisons is as separate, individual, distinct and independent of all the rest as one of the colleges of the State is distinct from every other similar institution in the State; and I would as soon think of putting one man as President over all the colleges of the State as to put one man in control of all the prisons of the State. The gentleman asks, who ever heard of an army, or a factory, or a ship, put in charge of a board? I accept the gentleman's comparison. We never did hear of an army put in charge of a board; but we do know that behind the general who commands the army stands the President of the United States, the commander-in-chief, with his board of counselors, his cabinet, to control and direct the operations of the general. We do

Mr. GOULD The Governor and the Legislature. Mr. C. C. DWIGHT-The Governor and the Legislature have no knowledge on the subject of the management of the prisons. The matter of prison management is a science, distinct from the duties of the Governor and the Legislature, and no man knows this better than the gentleman himself. The Governor and the Legislature have no experience in the management of prisons. All that the Governor and the Legislature can do is what the people can do-look at the balancesheet and see whether there is a balance on the side of profit or of loss; and that is the least of all the considerations which relate to this great subject of prison discipline and management. say that there should be an undivided, sole responsibility at the head of each of these prisons; and then I would create this body of men of intelligence and experience, who should be com petent to exact a just responsibility from that

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