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IN CONVENTION, Feb. 27, 1868.

Resolved, That there be printed, in addition to the number already printed, a sufficient num. ber of copies of the debates, documents and journals, to furnish each of the members with three copies; and also one copy each to the Mayor and the members of the Common Council of the city of Albany, and one copy each to the State Law Libraries at Rochester and Syracuse, the law libraries of the several judicial districts, the Law Institute, the Astor Library, and the New York Historical Society in the city of New York, and the Young Men's Associations of the cities of Albany and Troy.


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dimidishes 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 dove 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 regu. . accomplished, and that our criminals will be relation of his conduct. He is in this stage under a torted to society better men and useful citizens. very rigid coercion, but there is still considerable Again, we bave 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 wbich cases tbe indication is to strengthen its power. imposes silence. He may fail to accomplish bis The space penetrating power of the sailor's and appointed daily task. He may waste the material the bunter'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 streugthened by constant exercise; ways he may mapiiest a défiant 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 self. such is the universal law of nature. It is as truo 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 eficient in invigorating the affections as physical of his imprisonment will be determined by his Evo pastics are in increasing the force of the obtaining a certain number of marks. Every day Duscles. 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 terual coercion, which supersedes all necessity of gives uo addition to the sum of marks, but in Folitiga 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 prison. to small spd 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 jast punishment. As the prisoner gradually ac- desires to protract his term of discomfort, bis 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 teaptation is fully acquired. The practical modes lees pedal stages of imprisonment, the most hard. by #bich these objects are accomplished were eped and rebellious finally yield and set them. originally suggested by Captain Maconchie, but selves in good earnest for the first time to cultivate Efte greatly improved and simplified by Sir babits of obedience and self-control. When these Walter Croiton, uuder whose auspices the system habiis are acquired, and not until then, he passes

as brought into operation in the Irish prisons. into the second stage Here he is situated, Tbe 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 bas 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 erbredt, he is gradually introducing the system to ascertain the weak points of his character, #bich bas proved to be so successful in Ireland. which havo 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 prispers of all kinds, classes and idiosyncrasies, in all those matters which will it him to acquit but these are modified with respect to intensity himself well in the battle for life by honest and and curation, so as to adapt themselves to the reputable methods. Tuis stage is divided into specialties and individualities of each particular three classes, and the prisoner, on emerging from case. Every part of it is carefully adjusted to the penal stage, enters the third and lowest class. cultivate babits of self-control on the part of the His continuance in each of these classes is gradu. prisoner; his treatment is exactly determined by ated by his own progress; he must remain in Dis own conduct, and he is thus, to a very con- each until he has acquired the amount of knowl. siderable extent, made the arbiter of his own fate. edge and the system of habits which that class is Every prisoner passes through four separate designed to inculcate. If he is loug in doing stages, each stage being divided into steps. The this, his stay is long. If he does it quickly, he first stage is in the highest degree penal, and is soon rises into a higher class and remains in this an object of great dread to all classes. Each until he has fully acquired all that the discipline prisoner is confined in perfect solitude in a sepa of that class is intended to accomplish, when he rate cell. He is kept constantly to the hardest enters the first or highest clase, where the same Lator, dressed in the coarsest raiment and fed on process is repeated. The powerful influence of the most unjavory food. Yet his solitude even|Hope is thus brought into exercise. He bas &






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 In Irelaud it is decreasing. With us, as we have
for good conduct constantly operating on him. shown, our prisons do not deter men from the
On the other hand, he knows that every act will commission of crime. In Ireland, they are really
demonstrate that those changes in his character, a terror to evil doers and they furnish a real pro-
which the discipline was intended to produce, tection to life and property. With us, our pris-
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 reforma-
completely 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 differ.
until 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 sys-
age 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
tween 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 oficers must be re-
out in gangs, under keepers, but allowed to work tained so long as they perform their du.
on farms, in mechanical labor, on railroads or ties well, since every year will add to their
canals, as may be desired, and are credited with ability. It will be seen at a glance that
a large percentage of their earnings. The educa. unity of plan and purpose is indispensable to the
tion commenced in the earlier stages is continued working of the scheme, and I think I have clearly
through this; lectures on practical subjects by able shown that no board can possibly be held to a
men are given to them daily. Examinations are strict responsibility, or can direct any compli-
held weekly among themselves, which bring out the cated system which requires unity of purpose for
mental acquisitions of each prisoner, and a small its successful prosecution. We have, therefore,
part of their earnings is handed over to them, to choose between a truly reformatory system of
which they can spend as they please, but which prison discipline and the plan of the majority, or
they generally save carefully to be added to the one which will perpetuate the present admitted
savings which are given to them whon the term evils and the plan of the minority.
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 Columnbia [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 pot able to obtain the îigures 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 suc-
quired 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 sys.
he 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 per-
his old ways, if he is found without visible son who has only six months to serve, has not 80
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 in.
he 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 eroployment actually graduates itself according to the severity
for such coavicts 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.
has not been tested. In Ireland the tests have Mr. LAPHAM--Suppose it was a case of sen

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