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patriotic sentiments and virtuous conduct, and | zine; not one of whom knew that he was alive, to have been deluded by the villany of spies, or supposed it possible that, if so, he could be were beheaded as traitors who had endangered in this country, bearing the same name which the State ! It was only as an introduction to the figured so much in the west of Scotland. Mr affecting account given by the Glasgow publica- Tait heard no more of the threatened or intition of these men's fate, that the brief history mated action till February ; when, being apprized of the previous conspiracy of 1816–17 was given that Richmond had moved in it, by giving in a in the original work and in the Magazine. Declaration,-pleas were lodged for the defen.
Mr Kirkman Finlay having published an abu- dants, taking the bold ground of justifying the sive letter in the newspapers, denying in general | alleged libels; a dangerous course, and one never the accuracy of what was stated in that article, adopted except when the defendant is certain he on the authority of the Glasgow publication has done no wrong. reviewed, absolving Lord Sidmouth from the To enable him to examine many witnesses, charge of originating the Spy System in the west without the expense of sending them to London, of Scotland, and taking it upon himself, a severe
Mr Tait obtained a Commission to take evidence answer to Mr Finlay's letter was printed by Mr in Glasgow and Edinburgh. But to the surprise Tait, in the Magazine for June 1833. In that of everybody, Richmond made his appearance answer, Richmond's deeds are again alluded to. on the scene of his old exploits, and rendered the
Towards the end of June, Mr Tait received Commission of no avail. He had refused to join long letter, dated the 17th June, from Rich in the benefit and expense of the Commission; mond, sent, as he said, “ by the advice of his and, therefore, was only entitled to cross-examine. legal advisers,” that Mr Tait might have the But the Commissioner, allowing Richmond to opportunity of inserting it verbatim, in the make as many speeches as he pleased, and to exhiMagazine for next month, (July,) if Mr Tait bit, make the witness read, and put in as many thought it proper so to do.
newspapers, letters, &c. as he pleased, to crossThe Magazine having been made up, and examine as long as he pleased, and to ask any Mr Tait being from home, insertion of the letter questions, however obviously irrelevant, as he was delayed till the succeeding month ; and a pleased,-Richmond most amply availed himself leaf at the end of the July number devoted to of the means thus afforded him of defeating the notice of the letter.
objects of the Commission. In reply to that notice, the following letter The examination of Mr Peter Mackenzie was was received :
protracted for about twenty hours, not more than
London, Sth July 1833. two of which were occupied by Mr Tait's quesMr WILLIAM Tait, I am alvived to notice, and merely terruptions and speeches by Richmond, and a
tions ; the rest of the time being filled with innotice, the additional libel against iny character, which you have thought desirable to publish in your Magazine for this cross-examination, for length and irrelevancy, Your thirst for evidence shall be satisfied. I pledge myself done with the witness. But such conduct, on the
without any precedent. Still he was not nearly to furnish you with the means,--the truth of History demands it, --but it shall be before a Jury, where you will have an part of Richmond, tolerated by the Commissioner opportunity of justifying, if justification you will dare to attempt, those gratuitous assumptions, and unfounded asser
with a seeming impartiality, productive of real tions, in which you have so largely and so scandalously injustice, could not be longer borne. An adjourn. indulged—and which, however bitierly and sarcastically ment and a Report by the Commissioner to the expressed, cannot be received as evidence of guilt, based upon English Court, of Richmond's conduct, and his such authority Let the public, therefore, suspend their judgment, and
own toleration of it, were insisted for. Baron abide the issue.--I make no appeal to your generosity- Gurney referred the Report to the whole Court. fosewarned, my life and character would be safer under the uplifted dagger of the assassin, than dependant on your tender
This caused delay, and no less than seven adjournmercies. But if you possess any of that justice of which you
ments of the Commission. But it now plainly boast, although your redundancy, even in that attribute, may appearing that, with Richmond for cross-examibe fairly doubteit, you will append this to my former le ter, wbich you promise to publish in the next number of your
ner, and Mr Morrison for Commissioner, the Magazine.--am, &c. &c.
objects of the Commission would be wholly frus
A. B. RICHMOND. trated, Mr Tait's agent caused the Commission This letter was referred to in the Magazine to be closed on 11th November, and Mr Tait for August 1833 ; in which number Richmond's returned to Edinburgh, assured by the Commis. letter of 17th June was printed verbatim, at his
sioner that his Report would be despatched by request; but accompanied with extracts from the mail of next morning. But the remarkable his own Narrative, and ample commentaries, in history of this burked Commission, which cost vindication of the truth of the previous articles
Mr Tait about £100, is not yet done. It will be in the Magazine.
best learned from the correspondence which fol. These four numbers of the Magazine-May,
lows :June, July, and August 1833-contain the alleged libels.
Mr JOHN KERR, Writer, Glasgow, to Messrs BIRKET T
& Son, Attorneys, London. For some months it was thought that Rich
Glasgow, Ilth November 1834. mond would not dare to go into court. Indeed,
To-day I felt it my duty to close the Commis-ion in Richthat he should have come forward to challenge mond v. Marshall, &c., Messrs Finlay and Reddie having the first article at all, was matter of extreme
declined to attend, and there being no authority in the comwonderment to all connected with Tuit's Maga-l be attended, having declined to answer interrogatories; and.
mission to compel their attendance; anil Mr Salmond, though
VOL. I.NO. XII.
above all, Richmond having still persisted in his plan of bury- | accordingly requested to endeavour to procure such informaing all evidence in a mass of rubbish, by a rnost harassing tion; of course, in a justifiable way. He agreed to do so; and and vexarious system of cross interrogation, which seemed to communicated information, which was considered material, be ip'erminable, the ends of the Conmission were entirely such as to entitle hiin to suitable remuneration; and which frustrated, and I therefore closed it. The Report of Produc contributed greatly to the prevention of local mischief, but did tions will be transmitted by the Commissioner to Mr Baron not lead to the conviction of any individual. Aod, without Parke, by this mail, and therefore you may inake arrangements entering into any further detail, M. Finlay and Mr Reddie for seeing the whole as speedily as possible, and communicate submit, and leave it to the Court to determine whether, agreewith Mr Tait.
ably to the principles, not merely of the law of Scotlard, but I hope you will approve of the evidence I placed on the of the law of England. as recently particularly recognised in the record of ibe Commission, of the reasoos wbich induced me case of Home v: Lord F. C. Bentinck, 17th June 1920 – Brad to close it.
and Pringle, vol.ii. page 130_it be or be not their legalduty, at
the instance of any private party, to undergo any exainination Mr KERR to Mr Tait.
relative to the transactions before noticed ; in which they Glasgow, 12th November 1834.
acted solely in their official and public capacity under
government; and which involved inatters of public policy, I annex
affecting the safety of the state and the peace of the country. last night.
On the behalf, and as authorized by Mr Kirkman Fulay, I waited on Mr Reddie this morning, and found that he had and for iny self. been with Mr Morrison yesterday after we saw him, and pre
(Signed) Jas. REDDIE. vailed on him to delay despatching his Report till to.day, that Glasgow, 12th Nov. 1834. Mesurs Reddie and Finlay's Note might be despatched along with the other papers. 1 send you a copy of this Note here.
Mr Tait to Mr KERR. with.
Edinburgh, 13th November 1834, Messrs FINLAY and REDDIE's Note.
I cannot allow Messrs Finlay and Reddie's Note to form Nole for Kirkman Finlay of Castle Toward, and
part of the commissioners' report. But I am ready to open James Reddie, Advocate.
the Coinmission again, and examine them myself, if they will
appear and answer. With relerence to che summons and requisition served
It is absurd to suppose that the Cours of Exchequer would upon them, to appear and give evidence as witnesses,
give an opinion as to the course these gentlemen ought to and to produce certain alleged documents, before Alexander
purrue, when it has no power to enforce their attendance Morrison, Esq., Writer in Glasgow, as Commissioner', before ihe commissioners, or their answering all questions. appointed by the Barops of Exchequer, at Westininster, Messrs Finlay and Reddie will therefore have the good. in the suit depending before the said Barons, between Alex.
ness to say plainly, yes, or No ; and the Commissioner I ander Baillie Richmond, plaintiff, and Richard Marshall and trust, will delay sending off the Repori, until it be known John Miles, detendants ; Nir Finlay and Mr Reddie submit to
whether they will appear to be exainined as witnesses ur the Cominissioner the foll wing zhort statement of the circumstances in which they are placed ; to be transmitted to
Send a copy of this to Messrs Richmond, Fiulay, Reddie, Lotion, for the consideration of the Court.
and Morrison. dir Finlay und Mr Reddie are advised, they cannot be (ou pelled to apprar before the Commi-sioner, and undergo
By the early post of the 14th November, Mr Tait sent Me examination as witnessen, under the Act I. Will. IV. c. 22,
Morrison a brief but stronglemonstrance against his forwania or otherwise ; from the want of the requisite jurisdiction in ang Messrs Reddie and Finlay's Note; and, by the evening Scotland. But they have no wish to avail themselves of
any such objection ; being quite disposed, in their private capacity,
post of the same day, agreeably to intimation in the hrst letter,
à second and longer remonstrance, in the following terms :as individuals, to give their evidence, at the instance of any party, to the best of their recollecrion. They are advised,
Mr Tait to Mr MORRISON. bowever, thar, in the circunstances in which hey stand, they cannot, consistently with their legal duty, subunit to an exami
Edinburgh, 14th November 1:31. nation, or answer interiogatories, relative to the share they had in the transactions out of which the present suit appears
I must protest against your making any Report of the be
haviour out of doors, of the witness Mr P. Mackenzie, or to have arisen.
your making any allusion to proceedings of his- which In the winter of 1816-1817, the local authorities hall reason neirher tuok place while he was under examination, nor to believe an exiei sive conubivation and con-pracy existed during an interval between the diets of his examination--as among the operatives in the manufacturing districts of the a matier decidedly beyond the line of your duty as ComminWest of Scotland, in connection with a similar combination sjoner. In still stronger terms, tous! I protest against what in Lancashire and o: her parts of England ; and that the object Mr Kerr informs nie has since occurred. The Coninission of els combination. connected by secret oatus, was to over was closed in presence of the parties, and their agents, on turn the government, or, at least, to effect sonie great change | Tuesday, before one o'clock. Loistead of instan ly despatching by physical turce. In these circumstances, the late Sheriff of your report, that is, by the mail of Wednesday morning, I Lanarkshire', M, R bent Hamilton, it is believed, by direction hear you have allowed yoursell to be prevailed on by Jr of the Lord Advocate for Scotland, causid various inquiries Reddie, to delay de-paiching it, that Messrs Reddie and 1: be made suretly, with the view of a certaining the real Finlay's Note might be despatched along with the other mature, object, and extent of this combination, and ot bruin
papers. hog, such previous information as might ebable the local You, yesterday, received a copy of a letter I sent Mr Kerr, authorities to be on their guaid, and prevent the local mis. ob in the strongest terms, against your receiving and chief threatened ; and, also, such evidence as might lead to a forwarding the Note in any way. After ciosing the Commission, convienon, and enable the Lord Advocate thereby tv put down in presence of the parties, your functions, as Commissioner, the combination As the Sberti of Lanarkshire, at that time,
were at an end. Ås Mr Alexander Morrison, I maintain laboured under severe bodily intimity, and as the then Lord that you have no right to interfere in this matter. You were Provist of Glasgow was iar advanced in life, Mr Reddie, first not entitled to receive, or acknowledge, or forward even a towa clerk of Gasgow, and legal assessor to the magistrates, simple declinature to attend, from any witnesses numinoned. was requested to sive, and did give, his assistance officially. (Yet I should not have objected to thai.) But, alter ching Further, as the combination had assumed rather an alarmog the Report, dismissing the parties, and being " functus officii aspect, Mr Finlay, then member for the city of Glasgow, was your receiving testimony from men who would not substant requested by tbe then Secretury of Stare, tu lend bis aid, as a 10 examination-lestimony, while out of the reach of crossCounty Masincrale. A short time before this, Mr Jatirey, examination is a proceeuing against which I must pro now Lord Jeffrey, Iben a distinguished counsel at the Scotch tent, as altogether unwarranted, und obviously unjust. Ic här, having obtained the acquittal of Mr A. B. Richmond, must have escaped your observation, that the Note of Mes r's then an operanve weaver, from a charge of combination to Finlay & Reddie contains a stateinent of alleged facts, and raive wagen, and being struck with his intelligence, had also ut opinions, calculated, so far as received a correct. tu requested Mr Finlay to procure employment for him; and Mr operate in Richmond favour. The Note contains all which Finlay band actually made an applicativo in his behalt, to the these gentlemen could possibly say in Richmond's lavour. Luok witoni miilemtablishment at Lanuik. In these circumstances, at it again. it naturally occurred to Mr Finlay, as well as to the Sheriff, Whout right have these gentlemen, after failing to appear and Mr Redule, that Mr Richmond Inight be usetul in pro when cited as witnesses, and only offering v appear, after the conog the information deslied by Government. He was, Commission was closed-cloyging their otter, at the same
time, with an impossible condition—what right have they, I
Mr Tait to Mr REDDIE. say, to offer a Statement of facts, (important, if correct, but which I inaintain are incorrect, ) and their opinions as to Richa
Edinburgh, 20th November 1834. mond's conduct: thus giving testimony, while appearing to You were summoned as a witness in the action, Richmond doubt the propriety of their giving any? And, with all due v. the London Agents for Tit's Magazine, and did not attend respect, allow me to a-k what right have you to allow testi the Commissioner at the time appointed. After the Commismony, (of an informal kind, I admit, but calculated to benefit sion had been closed, a joint Note from you and Mr K. Finone and injure the other of the parties.) to be conveyed to lay was handed to the coinmissioner, and received and forthe English court, through your means ?
warded to the English court by him, contrary to my repeated I trust you will yet return the Note to the gentlemen who protests. Had that Note contained nothing but your reason proffer it; and decline rece viog more than a simple declina for not attending the commissioner, viz. that you had been ture to appear, in consequence of their having acted in official | engaged in the proceedings of 1816-17. &c., in an official capacapacities; if they choose to append that alleged reason to city, and thought yourself not at liberty to divulge any of their declinature, as Mr Salmond did.
these proceedings, I should not have given you this trouble ; It is surely unnecessary for me to add, that you know me for, whether your reason for declining to give evidence be a to be the real defendact; and that I hold a mandate from the good one or not, my London solicitors tell me, thire is no nominal defendants.
means of compelling the attendance of Scottish witnesses,
either before the English court, or the Scottish CommisMr RICHMOND to Mr KERR,
But you have actually given evidence in your Note, while In answer to the copy sent him, of Mr Tait's Letter to
seeming to decline to give any. You have voluntarily given Mr Kerr, of 13th November.
a statement of facts, and of your opinions on the chief matters Eagle Ino, Glasgow, 15th Nov. 1834. in dispute herween Richmond and me. And there are all in Sir, -Being absent from town in consequence of the death Richmond's favour. of a near relative, I have only this moment received your note As some of the facts and opinions are in contradiction to of the 13th, with the inclosure.
what is stated by Richmond himself, and to what has been I have no knowledge whatever of the Note from Mr Finlay the general understanding of the country, I trust you will and Mr Reddie, referred to by Mr Tait ; but if any method can think that co:nmon justice eutitles me to ask an explanation be suggested whereby I can facilitate the examination of those
of the apparent contradictions. gentlemen, I am ready to do so, to the utmost extent of iny After having given voluntary testimony in favour of one of means and power.
the parties, I hope you will not refuse to give the other the My sole object is to bring the facts of the case fairly explanations requested in the accompanying paper, which all before the public ; and, to avoid the possibility of inisconstruc bear direct relation to the statements in your and Mr Finlay's tion, I have had no communication whatever with the two Note. gentlemen above alluded to, since long before the action was You know that I am the real defendant in the rase; brought.
besides, I hold a mandate from the nominal defendants, RichI can only therefore repeat, that if I can in any way con ard Marshall and John Miles of London, authorizing me to tribute to compel the attendance of all parties capable of act for them in this matter. illustratiog ihe facts, I am ready to do so ; but it must be ob
(A Letler in the same terms was sent by Ur vious, from the great injury I have sustained, by being kept
Mr Finlay.) so long absent from my family and business, that any mea. sures to be adopted must be promptly executed.
Explanations required from James Reddie, Esq. Town- Clerk If you, Sir, have any suggestions to make on the subject,
and Assessor of the city of Glasgow, and Kirkman Finlay, I shall most willingly attend to them.
Esq.. upon matters of fact contained in a Joint Note Mr FINLAY to Mr KERR,
drawn up by them, and transmitted to the Right Honourable In answer to the copy sent him. of Mr Tait's letter to
the Barons of Exchequer, London, as reasons for declining Mr Kerr, of 13th November.
to compear before the Commissioner, Mr Alex. Morrison, Castle Toward, l5th Nov. 1834. appointed at Glasgow by the said Barons to receive evidence Mr Fiplay has received Mr Kerr's letter, with its enclo in the libel case, Richmond v. Marshall and Miles, now He desit in answer, to say, that he shall not hold
pending in the Court of Exchequer. any communication with parties, as to his conduct, in the cause in which Mr Kerr is employed; nor shall he suffer any Query I.-In your Note, referred to in the accompanying observation of theirs to influence hinn in the least, much less
letter from Mr Tait, you state-afrer having tendered what can be consent that any of them shall presume to dictate to amounts to direct and inost important testimony for the hiin what answer he may think tit to give to the Court or its Plaintiff, Richmond-that, in the secret transactiocs in which Commissioner.
you were concerned with that person, Mr Finlay and yourTo further the ends of justice, Mr Finlay would cheerfully
selt, the joint note writers, “ acted solely in your official put himself to some personal inconvenience and trouble and public capacity under government;' and, for this reason but if the law and practice in such cases be, that examinations you plead silence on subjects " which involve," as you allege, should not be consented to, under the circumstances in which
* matters of public policy, affecting the safety of the state he was then placed, V. Finlay inust, in die present instance; and the peace of the country.” It is respectrully requested declive to do what all persons, under circunstances similar that you will explain what you mean by your public and to this, have refused.
official capacity preventing you from being examined for the
defendants, while you give testimony for the Plaintiff, as it Mr REDDIE to Mr KERR,
is certain that neither you nor Air Finlay held any situation
whatever, public or private, under government, or any reIn Answer to the copy sent him, of Mr Tait's letter to
sponsible share iu the local government of the county of Mr Kerr, of 18th November.
Lanark, or of the city of Glasgow, in the years specified ? Glasgow, 14th Noveniber, 1834. ll.-In your note to the Barons, declining to give evidence I was favoured with your letter of yesterday evening, and, for the Defendants, you, Mr Reddie, state, that you were in reply, I have merely to state, that Mr Finlay and I abide “ Town-Clerk of Glasgow, and legal Assessor to the Magisby the Note in vur behalf, lodged, on the 12th instant, with trates, and that you were requested to give your assistance Mr Morrison, as Commissioner, appointed loy the Barons of officially." You are besought to explain who so requested Exchequer in England.
you ? - You were, it is submitted, the lunctionary of the
Alagistrates and Town Council, and no more. Now it cerMr MORRISON to Mr Tait.
tainly was not uoder their authority that you, in concurrence
with Mr Finlay, assumed, as the Plaintiff, Richmond, states, Glasgow, 14th November 1834.
“ de facto, the whole local governinent;''-under what re. I am favoured with your letter of this date. Before its sponsibility, then, or by whose orders did you act, and under arrival, the Commission was signed, and the Productions sealed which you now plead silence as an official personage? up; but supposing the matter still open, I do not think I III. —You have said in your note, that the Sheriff of the could, in justice to Messis Reddie and Finlay, retuse to trans. county was at this time labouring under revere bodily in. mit their reasons for decliving to attend the Commission. If | firmity, and that the Lord Provost was far advanced in life :" these reasons are insufficient, your counsel can argue that Will you explain if, besides these two individuals, the whole point before the Judge, and, if thought advisable, obtain a magistracy of the town and county were also incapable, tenewal of the Commission.
from age and bodily infirmity--that Mr Finlay and you,
the Town-Clerk of Glasgow, found it necessary to assume acting, ak yon state, in a public official capacity, from the their power, and to act in this matter, secretly, for the Sheriff and the Lord Provost being, the one indisposed and entire body of the Magistracy ; without, even according to the other aged, and the Magistrates, not more than these The Plaintiff, Richmond's stiveneito, any authority from gentlemen. being in the secret. It was consequently, then, them, and without once consulting them, during what you you and Mr finlay alone that had reason to believe in this describe in your nate as a period of great alarm and pulvlic wirle-spread and dreadful treasonable conspiracy ; and how, danger?
or on what evidence you so believed, is of little consequence, IV.-You stare in your Note that the Sheriff of Lanark ay you have stated your belief to the Court of Exchequer, shire, Mr Hamilton, was believed to have been directed making it, among other reasons, a bar against your being by the Lord Advocate to cause inquiries to be made secretly examined before the Commissioner in behalf of the Defenabout an alleged treasonable conspiracy; and that he, the dants, You are requested to explain the grounds of your Sheriff, concurred with you and Mr Finlay in engaging belief, if you are not now fully aware that no such treasonthe Plaintiff, Richmond, for that service. “it naturally able conspiracy, “ connected by secret oaths, and extending occurring" (to the Sheriff, besides to yourselves) " that the over the manufacturing districts of the west of Scotland, and Plaintiff, Richinond, an intelligent weaver, might be use Lancashire, and other parts of England." ever bad any exful in procuring the information desirell boy she Govern istence, save in the popular frenzy excited by the arts and inent : Now, there is no evidence to show that the Lord
arts which the plaintiff so minutely describes. You have Advocate ever directed the Sheriff to instituce rnch inquiries, stated that no conviction was brought home to any individual manid, in point of fact, by the Plaintiff's own statemenis, the upon the secret information which you and Mr Finlay obS:eriff neither did know nor could have known, and conse
And it is certain, that, even, with the aid of spies quently could not concur in the employment of the Plaintiff as and instigators, no conclusive evidence was obtained of the a Spy for the Government ?
existence of even local treasons and conspiracies; as, after V.--You state in your Note that this secret information repeated attempts to obtain convictions the Crown Lawyers which you engaged Richmond to obtain “ was desired by the abandoned all the cases. Will you not either instantly reGovernment." Now, Mr Kirkman Finlay, in a published call your Note or correct your extraordinary statements Jerter addresord to Mr Tait, says, that you. (or. at least, he,) upon this point ? the only apparent agents in this affair, in the first instance, VIII. --Richmond states, that when you engaged him as a voluntarily sent such information to the Government. This, secret informer, he was surprised to find that you had no Mr Finlay states, when compelled to clear Lord Sidmouth other spy or confidential agent, and that he was compelled to from the obloquy thrown upon him as a minister, by proceed point out for that service a person, ( understood to be his ings in the West of Scotland, in which is now appears he was friend and accomplice--Biggar ;) and farther, that you degreatly misled. How is it explained that the Goverument i pended entirely on him for information. Now, he repeatedly desired the information for which you employed Richmond, states, that the alleged conspiracy - had no connection whata while Mr Finlay confesses, that he, at least, tendered to ever with England,”.(page 81,)“ never extended beyond the the Government the information of the far-spread, and neighbourhood of Glasgow,” (page 71,) and was, in reality, frightiul, iind treasonable conspiracy, which you describe in contemptible; aod that (before he was taken into your emyour joint note?
ployment) he greatly doubted its existence at all. ' And he VI.-It is stated in that extraordinary Note, which conveys says he told Mr Finlay, in one of their first interviews, that at opcu strong evidence for the Plaintiff, and a vindicatio he “ considered uothing could better serve the purpose of of your own conduct, couched under a declinature. upon the Ministry, and those pposed to every species of reform, grounds of State policy, to be examined for the Defend. than such an attempt, (conspiracy,) as it would serve as a änts, that you acted solely in your official public capacity pretext for throwing discredit oo its advocates, and quashing under Government. Aod you have farther stated that, the demand then so generally made for reform"--(Narrative, in the winter of 1816-17, you were requested to give page 60.) That you have seen fit to represent this treasonyour
" official assistance, the Lord Provost of Glasgow able and revolutionary conspiracy in so appalling a light to heing for advanced in life, and the Sheriff suftering under se the English Cour', cannot surely be to magnify the services of Vire bodily infirmity." Your attention is desired to the char. the Plaintiff at that awful crisis, and to strengthen his title acter under which the Plaintiff, Richmond, says that you and to what you for years lalvoured to obtain for hio, and now Mr Finlay acted—and you are urgently requested to reconcile call a " suitable remuneration" (given) " for information conhis statement with that which you have voluntarily tendered sidered inaterial, and which contributed greatly to the preto the Barons of Exchequer, while refusing lo be examined vention of local mischief" And you are respectfully requested for the Defendants, unless upon a compulsory order or judg to explain this, as the Plaintiff himself asserts, that from his ment, which, you may well know, the said Barons have no schemes being thwarted, by Mr Finlay in particular, great power to give. Richmond states, page 56 of his Narrative,
local mischief, so far from being prevented, was created. that you, the town clerk of Glasgow, and Mr Finlay, the then IX. _Since, in behalf of the Plaintiff. you have assuredly member for the Glasgow district of burgbs, “bad, de facto, stepped beyond what yon seem to think the line of public the whole local government," in consequence of what he calls official duty, and have refused to be examined for Defendants, **the general imbecility;" which imbecility must, it is appre placed by the libel law in the anomalous situation of being hended, incan merely the inaptitude of the city and county tried in a court having no juridiction in Scotland, and no magistracy for obtaining secret information, and detecting power to call witnesses from that country, it is contidently extreasonable conspiracies, as they were exercising all their pected that you will re-consider what you have said in your Note proper functions in the usual rutine. Richinond again about Richinond's preventing " great local mischief,” as that states, at page 66 of his Narrative, that, in these secret and statement is at complete variance with the statements of the mysterious affairs, " Mr Reditie was substituted for the sheriff
Plaintiff himself, (though he is a person not apt to underrate of the county ;" and, farther, page 89, that when the warrants the value und inportance of his own services,) as, according of arrest came to be executed, (which could not be done with to him, the alarm was idle and artfully got up, and the danout the show of magisterial authority,) "shough the sheriff ger pretended.-- This dreadful conspiracy, as Richmond al
of the county had nominally the management, Mr Reddie leges, took its rise from the Thrushgrove reform ineeting. • virtually conducted the whole official details," and again, in Its mysterious birth and parentage are not at present in ques
note, page 111, “ that none of the magistrates of Glasgow tion; but it certainly first saw the light whil-, according to were consulted," though their authority inust have been em. the Plaintiff, Messrs Finlay and Reddie "had, de facto, the played in arresting the alleged conspirators ; and also, as whole local government." Its fosterage and management, Richmond states, many inpocent persons. An explanation of Richmood described very graphically :-* The Magistrates all these things is respectfully requested.
of Glasgow were not let into the secret.' * The Lord ProVII.-- You sta'e to the Baroos in your joint-note, that in vost was so much alarmed that he would not sleep in bis own the winter of 1816.17, (and, it may be remarked, in a very house for several nights,” in consequence of rumours. Richfew weeks after the great Thrushgrove meeting for reform, mond anserts that these “rumours were purposely set ufloat to which, it is universally believed, excited great alarm among deceive the Magistrates.". Even Mr Finlay, but not Mr Redthe Tory party in the West of Scotland,) " the local autho die, soumetimes quaked at the reverberation of his own thunder ; rities had reason to believe an extensive combination and con
or, ils Richmond says, Mr Finlay, though apprizeri it was a spiracy existed among the operatives in the manufacturing dis part of the policy, was not always free from their influence, tricts of the West of Scotland, in connection with a similar com daily references being made tu ine to a certain the truth." (Narbination in Lancashire, and other parts of England; and that racive, Note, p. 69.] The tactics of the extra-officials at this the object of this combination, connected by secret oaths, was cime is minuiely described by the Plaintiti. [Narrative, pp. to overturn the Government, or at least to effect some great 68, 69.) The systein pursued," he says, produced all the change by physical force." Now, according to the Plaintiff Richmond, and by your own admission, you and Mr Finlay
† Their influence that is the influence of "the famours were the actual local anthorities at this time : you were purposely set atloat to deceive the Magisirates."
bad effects that can result from an organized system of espin. Mr Tait, who acted for the Defendants, had returnelti Elinnage, without any of the good.'' The gang let loose burgh, and when Mr Morrison, who had been Commissjoner, upon this occasion belonged chiefly to the police establish had no power to act longer, a joint note, most unfairly tenment of Edinburgh, the local officers being too well dered, in justification of themselvex, and giving, were it correct, known. They were pot inaile acquiinted with par important testimony for the Plaintiff, while they plead, unticulars, but were given to understand there were some der the act Ist William IV. c. 22d, and what they call their secret measures going on against the Government, which public official capacity, for refusing to appear as witnesspe, and they were to endeavour, by all means, to discover. The to have the truth of their averinents sifted by counsel in an exlocal officers also got a general notification, which, without amina'ion upon oath. They indeed affect to refer to the Barons being of any service, enabled them to assist in the howl, and of Exchequer : though, as a lawyer, Mr Reddie must know, add to the mass of misrepresentation." This cannot be called that the Barons have no jurisdiction, and neither can nor will prevention of mischief, either local or general. The Plaintiff interfere. Upon such unprecedented proceedings. (especially states, that there was no real cause whatever for these false upon the part of Mr Reddie, the legal assessor of the Magisa alarms ;-there certainly can be no justification of the means trates of Glasgow,) it is not proposed to animadvert ; and all which, he asserts, were taken to excite them. He says, there present allusion to the personal and confidential connection, was no cause for the arrest of any man: and it is cerrain that friendship, and correspondencr, which the Plaintiff states in many innocent men were arrested. It is undeniable, that his Narrative that he long held and enjoyed with that gentle. great misery and ruin to individuals and families was the man, is forborne. But it is conceived that Mr Reddie is bouod result--that large sums of the public money were Javished to explain the Note transmitted to the Court of Exchequer, that much distrust of the public justice of the country, and
as the course he has taken now renders this, in common justice, odium and hatred of its administrators were excited, which imperatively necessary for the protection of the Defendants. It yet burn in the hearts of the people of Glasgow-that though is presumed that, though the sum which Mr Reddie ultimately che low was certainly strainert to the utinost, no conviction had the satisfaction of paying to Richmond trom the public purse was obtained ; and that the Habers Corpus Act was in Scot.
must, for reasons of State policy, be concealed, no public reason land suspended without cause, as, Richinond states, the Soli whatever exists for concealment of the sums which the Plaincitor-General bimself afterwards privately acknowledged.
tiff demanded, and which Lord Sidmouth long refused. There Will Mr Reddie, therefore, he pleased to explain what is meant can be no public reason why Messrs Reddie and Finlay should in the Note to the Court of Exchequer, by Richmond's secret not state the nature and extent of the plaintiff's claims of inforınation “ contributing greatly to the prevention of local
indemnity for alleged pecuniary losses and sacrifices, which mischief," when that person again and again proclaims, that they repeatedly enforced at the Home Office, especially as great inischief was created by his information being impro-, this is wholly a private and personal affair. perly acted upon, and by “the gang being let loose," "the XIII.-It is also expected, in common fairness, that, since rumus being set afloat." and, finally, by the arrests made
Messrs Finlay and Redulie have stated in their jint note, that " without the Magistrates being consulted ?" It is thus the they employed Richmond, an intelligent weaver, to obtain Plaintiff describes the third act of the drama in which he secret information, but, of course, in a justifiable way,
that fiqured, which opens after seventeen or eightren persons, who
they would now exhibit a copy of their secret instructions to had been inveigled to attend an illegal meeting by the Spy
him for his guidance in the extraordinary duty assigned him; aod acıomplice Biggar, were arrested. “ Warrants," be
as these private instructions can now be no State secret, and says, “ were issued for the apprehension
a great number
as the Defendants have undertaken to prove, on the producmore; and so litile attention was paid to the accuracy of the
tion of this document, that the Plaintiff arted in an unjustifi. information, and so much anxiety was shewn to increase the able way. That such instructions should be exhibited, is apparent magnitude of the confederary, that, in the confusion humbly conceived to be necessary to the exculpation of Messrs of the first few days, several were arrested who had no con
Finlay and Reddie themselves; and it cannot for a moment be nection whatever with it.” Will Messrs Finlay and Reddie supposed that, at an alarming crisis, they sent abroad among explain in what manner great local mischief was prevented
bis M jesty's subjects a secret emissary, tempted by the offer by these proceedings?
of place, and furnished with money and a roving coin mission; X.-In relation to the assertion in the Note that great local but that on the contrary he must have received positive mischief was prevented, the attention of Alessrs Finlay anil
instructions, and that a definite line of duty was prescribed Reddie is farther requested to the fact asserted by Richinond,
for himn. in his Narrative, p. 110, that the Lord Advocate Maconochie,
Finally, Messrs Finlay and Reddie are orgently requested after the third indictinent he had drawn had failed against the
to do away, as far as is now possible, the bad consequences of persons arrested in Glasgow and arraigned for high treason,
the joint bote, so unwarrantably tendered by them, and forsaid, the blame originally was not attributable to him, the
warded to the Court of Exchequer by the quondam ComLord Advocate, but to the local authorities in Glasgow, who
missioner; and to a'one for that act to the Defendants by had taken the people into custody without orders. Will ample and satisfactory explanation on all the points above Messrs Finlay and Reddie, who, in the winter of 1816-17,
alluded to. according to their Note, sent to the Court of Exchequer, • acted solely in their ufficial and public capacity under
It will be seen, at a glance, of how much consequence Government,” in order to the “prevention of local mis it might have been to the defendants to obtain iinswers chief,” explain, why, the first crown officer in Scotland did from Messrs Finlay and Reddie to these queries; for (according to the assertion of Richmond) complain of the the evidence given by them, in their Note, could not fail line of conduct pursued in Glasgow, which in fact, produced to operate strongly in Richmond's favour, and against not merely local mischief, and spread needless alarm, conster the defendants, if not counteracted by the cross-exami. nation, and inisery through society, but was the cause of nation of these remarkable witnesses, or by their answers great national disgrace-disgrace to the Crown Lawyers, scandal to the public justice of the country, and, finally, led
to the above queries, which were designed to serve as a to a solemn investigation in the House of Commons, which,
substitute (an imperfect one, after all) for the usual of course, was settled in the usual manner of unrepresented
legal cross-examination. Happily for the defendants, times: Will Messrs Finlay and Reddie explain upon what
the English court, on a representation of the nature of ground the Plaintiff was entitled to remuneration from the this unprecedented Note, made by the defendants'attorpublie purse for aiding in the accomplishment of those neys, refused to receive the note in evidence, or even to results ?
allow office-copies to be given out; and the strict adheXI.—There are some minor errors in the joint pote, which, rence of the Court to the law of evidence, prevented as they are of injurious tendency to the Defendants, require any allusion by the plaintiff to a document so very explanation. The writers allude to the Plaintiff as Alexander much in his favour; so that, after all, the Note proved Baillie Richmond: now, in point of fact, the person to neither better nor worse than so much waste paper. whom they reter as having been einployed by them to obtain secret information regarding a treasonable conspiracy, was
Whatever were the objects of its authors and its fornamed Alexander Richmond; and they further assert, that
warder, they were all frustrated. The Note served this person, Alexander Baillie Richmon', when tried for
neither the purpose of whitewashing Richmond, nor of combination, was acquitted; whereas, the truth is, that Alex
injuring the case of the defendants. It served neither ander Richmond, being iudicted for combinatiou, Hled ani as a justification of Messrs Finlay and Reddie's connecwas outlawed, livet under outliwry fir abuve two years,
tion with Richmond and the transactions of 1816-17, surrendered himself to justice, was trieri, and. -- not acquitted, nor as an excuse for their declining to give evidence in but pleaded guilty, and was sentenced to imprisonment.
But all this, Jiessrs Finlay, Reddie, and Xll.-Messrs Fiolay and Redite bave transmitted to the Morrison can scarcely be supposed to have anticipated ; Court of Exchequer, through the Glasgow Commissioner, the otherwise, the Note would neither have been cendered day after the Commission had been formally closed, and after
to the Commissioner by Messrs Reddie and Finlay,