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turns to two or three students who follow him, and almost aloud expresses his wonder to find her still alive. The nurse. duly administers the prescription, and on pain of dismissal sees that every want is attended to. Is nothing else needed? Is anything else supplied ? A melancholy religious tract, perhaps : but for the spontaneous action of mind upon mind, for tender, human, sympathizing love, — for help to the sinking spirit, - where are they? It is no answer to appeal to individual cases ; to cite one or two hospitals, in which thoughtful and kindly women of the higher classes have been permitted to visit; — in which the superior intellect and administrative faculties of the matron for the time being have exercised an improving influence. These are the exceptions; and until larger, higher principles of action are generally recognized, they will continue to be accidental exceptions to the prevalence of a narrow-minded mechanical system.

In several of the letters I have received, the condition of some of our workhouses, in town and country, is set forth at length: and surely it is worth considering whether the administration of these institutions might not be improved by the aid of kindly and intelligent women sharing with the overseers the task of supervision. The most conscientious men are

apt to treat the wretched paupers as if they had neither hearts to be touched, nor souls to be saved. The paid matrons are taken from a class scarcely a grade above them ; often as ignorant, as miserable, as debased as themselves, and wholly unfit to be intrusted with power. Do the aged, while swallowing perforce the dregs of a bitter life, find any reverence, any pity? Do the children, — poor little scraps of a despised humanity, - find tender

ness, freedom, or cheerfulness? Can any one doubt that the element of power disunited from the element of Christian love must in the long run become a hard, cold, cruel machine ? and that this must of necessity be the result where the masculine energy acts independent of the feminine sympathies ? The men who manage in their own way these abodes of destitution, dread, not without some reason, any troublesome interference with established routine through the intervention of impulsive womanly instincts, which, ill-trained, misdirected, and unenlightened, may do mischief; but must they, therefore, be set wholly aside? How long shall this absurd and unmanly jealousy in one class of men, - the men

, who fill public or municipal offices, - be allowed to petrify the public heart, and cripple the means of doing good ? How long shall

the narrow prejudices of another class of men, - the husbands, brothers, and fathers, — withhold women from a sphere of healthy action, and thus perpetuate and widen the gulf which separates class from class?

The principle kept in view by the Poor Law guardians and overseers is to save the money of the parish, — a very proper and honorable principle in those who have to administer it;but is not a wiser and more beneficent expenditure of the parish rates possible? Some of those who are largely taxed to pay those rates think so.

Since it is allowed on all hands that we want Institutions for the training of efficient “ Sisters of Charity” for all offices connected with the sick, the indigent, the fallen, and the ignorant among us, why should not our parish workhouses be made available for the purpose? In such an application of means and funds already at hand, it appears to me that there would be both good sense and economy, therefore it ought to recommend itself to our so-called practical men.

I remember when, some years ago, the first trial was made at Birmingham to institute what has since been called “ Schools for the Adult Females employed in the Manufactories.” The Legislature had restricted the

" hours of labor, and the women, when dismissed from work, shrunk into lonely, dirty, neglected homes, or walked the streets, or congregated into the vilest public-houses. They earned good wages, yet hardly one in ten could read or write; they were ignorant of any feminine or household work; they were dirty, reckless, wasteful ; unsexed, if not unchaste. Some ladies, true “ Sisters of Charity," united to open a refuge where these women could obtain light and warmth without the temptation of drink and bad company, and the means of instruction if they were so minded, although it was not forced upon them.

. Will it be believed that every possible difficulty and obstacle was thrown in the way of this project by masters and overseers ? Those who undertook the work of mercy, and at length carried it out, had to conquer the ground occupied by masculine prejudices inch by inch ; and now it is among the women they have rescued that the employers seek their steadiest female “hands," that the workmen look for tidy, good tempered wives.

Another point to which my attention has been drawn, and which has an especial interest at present, is the condition of the soldiers' wives. I hardly dare to describe the state of things which has been allowed to exist in the barracks and military depôts up to the present

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time; — from six to sixteen married couples sleeping together in one room, and in some instances unmarried girls, daughters of the soldiers, living among them, and brought up in this human stye!

When a woman of decent habits is introduced to such a scene, can we wonder that in a few weeks she should

. become a mere female beast, or learn to drown in drink the unutterable misery and degradation of her position ? Who are the officers and gentlemen” who honor their mothers, who guard with such care the delicacy of their wives and daughters, yet can expose women to ignominy like this? If the wives of these “officers and gentlemen” were expected, as a matter of duty, incident to their social position, or, at least, were allowed by their husbands, to take an interest in the well-being of the soldiers and their wives, could these things have existed ? Is it not matter of astonish

? ment and humiliation among us that the expediency of giving decent lodging to the married men is only now discussed by the military authorities? I would suggest that the welleducated, and benevolent, and energetic women married to officers in command, should take counsel with their husbands on the possibility of organizing into an efficient working staff the women who belong to each regiment.

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