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ASPATRIA AGRICULTURAL SHOW continued
THE DINNER continues
MR. JONATHAN BOUCH responds
His friends had thrown it back in his teeth that he knew nothing about
agriculture - that he had not supped a great lot of poddish and
butter-milk - (laughter) - but he had always imagined that he had been
brought up to agricultural pursuits - in making butter churns and the like.
(Laughter). As to the question of free trade, he remembered in days gone
by, farmers used to sit in the "Tom and Jerry shops" with pewter pots before
them saying, "Down with Cobden and John Bright !" and "Everlasting life to
Protection !" (Laughter). Those were men who imagined at the time that
they were in the right track - men who still imagined it - but free trade
was accomplished, and what had been the result ? The farmers whose old
hedges, at the time he had alluded to, occupied one part of their fields,
and water another, had turned out and burst away from the Tom and Jerry
shops, called together their scattered elements of strength, and awakened
their dormant energies - (loud cheers and laughter) - and by six years after
the corn laws were repealed, the hedges were pruned and the water was gone,
and the meadows, which before grew nothing but rushes, were now fruitful
fields, producing the most luxuriant crops of grass that he ever saw in his
life. (Renewed laughter and cheers).
Protection had been the greatest sluggard that ever crippled the energies of
any nation. (Cheers). There had been a good deal of talk from time to time
about courses of management and so on. The best manager of land, and the
best farmer, was he who knew how to produce the most beneficial results from
the particular acres which he himself occupied. (Cheers). The same
description of management would not answer in two farms, one adjoining the
other. (Hear, hear). He knew very little about farming for his part -
(laughter) - but an old jolly farmer, with a rare round belly on him - just
like himself - (laughter) - had come and said to him the other day "Do you
think it will be of any use sowing any more barley? Folks are all giving up
eating barley bread, and if the right hon. baronet knocks beer on the head
it will be all up with us." (Much laughter).
He had replied that he thought Sir Wilfrid's bill would not be passed in a
minute or two. (Laughter). the jolly old farmer had gone on to say that
"If Sir Wilfrid's bill pass, there will be a collapse - our bellies will
stick to our backs - (laughter) - and before three months were over our
friends would not know us again - we will be so shrivelled and
'mummymised'." (Roars of Laughter). He had reassurred his interrogator by
pointing out to him that the magistrates of the county - far seeing men -
saw the great "drought" coming -(laughter)-and at Brewster Sessions were
preparing for the great change by knocking off the public houses by nice
quiet degrees-(laughter)-and he was sure Sir Wilfrid Lawson would "let the
bill lie over" two or three sessions. (Renewed laughter). There was no
better judge of mankind than Sir Wilfrid; and he would let the bill quietly
sleep for two or three sessions while the nation was in training, preparing
for the great change. (Laughter). He had told his friend that he need not
be afraid to sow his barley till Sir Wilfrid was likely to obtain his great
bill. (Cheers and laughter).
Mr. RAILTON gave the "Committee of Management", complimenting them highly,
and asking them all to continue in office.
Mr. HENRY THOMPSON responded.
The VICE-CHAIRMAN gave the health of the Secretary, and Mr. KIRKHAUGH
acknowledged the compliment.
Mr. JONATHAN BOUCH gave "The Vice-Chairman."
The VICE-CHAIRMAN, in responding said as to the question of leases and the
security for tenants' capital, that the whole question could be put in one
word "confidence." Let landlords choose good men for their tenants and
tenants choose good men for their landlords, and have confidence in one
another, and that would be better than all the leases that all the attorneys
in England could draw up. (Laughter and cheers).
The Rev. E. SALKELD interpolated the toast of "The Press;" and Mr. W. STEEL
returned thanks on behalf of the representatives present.
The CHAIRMAN proposed the last toast on the list "The Bonnie Lasses of
Cumberland" Before doing so, he referred to the remarks of the
Vice-Chairman. No doubt a great thing in getting a good tenant was finding
an honest man. But that was not business. (hear, hear). If all men were
honest they would want no rules, and the Vice-Chairman would not have much
to do. (Laughter). But they might not find an honest man, and in order to
do business in a satisfactory manner they must have such rules and
regulations as would enable them to carry it on when one party - whether
landlord or tenant - should try to get an advantage. (Cheers). He was
sorry to differ from the Vice-Chairman; but if they were to lay their heads
together for a short time, they might not differ so much after all. (Hear,
Turning to the subject of the toast, he said he was looking forward with
pleasing anticipation to the time when he might have in his constituents a
number of most amiable ladies. (Laughter). They all, whether members of
Parliament or not members of Parliament, were happy to think they had the
ladies for their friends. (Cheers).
Mr. KIRKHAUGH responded on behalf of the fair sex. He mentioned that he had
the names of 15 ladies on his list of subscriptions, representing 13
The company then separated at about half-past six o'clock.
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