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Rules for the regulation and government of the poor, in the house of industry, in the Isle of Wight
Newport: printed by J. Mallett, 1789. 8vo., 10 + (2)pp., including the final blank, recent marbled boards lettered on spine. A fine copy. Second edition. Of great rarity: ESTC finds a copy only at Cambridge Un.Lib. and of the 1775 printing only at Bodleian. Although BL also seems to have a copy (which surprisingly does not show up on ESTC). The House of Industry opened near Newport in the Isle of Wight in 1774 is reputed to be the second oldest such workhouse in Britain. Based on legislation (Acts of Parliament of 1768 and 1771) the institution was designed 'for the reception, maintenance, and employment of the poor belonging to the several parishes and places within the said Island'. Trustees for the new multi-functional workhouse were to be Sir John Barrington, Sir Richard Worsley, and Sir William Oglander. The individual poorhouses belonging to the island's parishes were sold off to help fund the new site, which comprised some 80 acres of Parkhurst Forest. The site was granted to the Guardians of the House of Industry on a 999 year lease at £8-17s.9¼d. p.a. The Rules> of the House are set out clearly in the present pamphlet in numbered clauses, 15 relating to the management by the Governor and Matron of the institution and its inmates and 4 relating to the Directors and Guardians. These rules including locking the doors at night, 'keeping all the rooms neat and clean', opening windows, and providing meals three times a day (a sample Bill of Fare is included), Rule V required the Governor and Matron to 'cause the childrens heads and hands to be kept clean, and all the cloaths and beds; and deliver to every one of the poor, clean linen on Saturday evening, and take in their foul on Sunday morning'. And there were various rules about candles, prayers, soap and linen, the actions nurses should take when an inmate dies, &c. &c. Rule VIII required that 'a book shall at all times lie open in the Committee Room, with pen and ink near it, that in case any Director, or Guardian, or other person visiting the House occasionally shall perceive any thing amiss, or can suggest any thing, for the better conducting this undertaking, he may write his thoughts or observations therein .....'. And Rule XII 'That such girls as are of a proper age, be employed and instructed (as far as the Matron and Servants of the House are capable of teaching them) in cookery, housewifery, washing, and scouring, and all other work, to qualify them for service'.
      [Bookseller: John Drury Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2015-09-16           Check availability:      Biblio    

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