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G.G. Mackintosh, Esq., C. S., Purneah, proposed by Mr. Bell, and seconded by W. Storm, Esq.
Rajah Bursingchunder Roy, and F. Kircuboffer, Esq., proposed by G. Preston, Esq., and seconded by Mr. Bell.
G.M. Hunter and G. Austin, Fsqrs., Jessore, proposed by G.M. Adam, Esq., and seconded by Mr. Bell.
Motions of which notice was given at last meeting.
No. 1.-Dr. Wallich's motion, to offer premiums for essays on particular subjects, was brought forward and discussed. As there appears to be considerable difference of opinion on the propriety of offering rewards on essays, while the sum of four thousands rupees was already set aside for the best work on Indian Agriculture in all its branches, and as it became a question whether the funds of the Society were adequate to meet the outlay contemplated by the motion in question, with refer ence to other objects for which the Society have already pledged itself, Dr. Spry, as the seconder of the original motion, moved as an amendment, seconded by Mr. G. A. Prinsep,
“That the four articles following be assigned as the staple articles deserving of the Society's support, for practical treatises, viz. cereal grains, sugar, silk and cotton; and that the details be referred to the general committee for repôrt. Amendment carried. The secretary here submitted an account-current, dated 30th April, 1838, from F. Macnaghten, Esq., shewing that the Society has 19,900 rupees invested in Government securities, 10,000 of which unlocked up to meet Society's engagements, to meet the offer of premiums already voted away.
Motions Nos. 2 and 3, carried nem con. NOTICE OF MOTION.
No. 1.-Proposed by John Bell, seconded by W. Storm, Esq.
1st.—That as most of the European vegetables have been brought to perfection in the vicinity of Calcutta, through the stimulating influence of medals and rewards from this Society, it is expedient to withdraw further encouragement from such as may now with safety be left to the profits of industry derivable from local consumption, and limited in favor of artichokes, asparagus, seakole, celery, parsnips and a few others that have not been brought to sufficient perfection to tempt uninterrupted cultivation for the market.
2d.—That the medals and rewards thus taken from vegetables be enhanced (with reference to the more expensive cultivation) and applied to fruits, hitherto neglected, there being little doubt that with care and attention, grapes, oranges, apples, strawberries, and other delicious fruits may be brought to perfection in Bengal, and indigenous fruits greatly improved.
3d.—That with a view to secure such a desideratum, parties having approved stocks be invited to contribute grapes (or to sell them to the Society) who will undertake to keep up a nursery for the distribution of young fruit trees.
4th-That the sum of 500 rupees be annually set apart and laid out in the importation of fruit trees, from the Cape, America, New South Wales and Europe.
5th:-That Government be solicited to authorize the superintendent of the botanical garden at Seharunpore to send down grafts of fruit-trees and shrubs, and that the expense of trasmission be borne by the Society.
6th-That two of the Society's ordinary silver medals, and fifty rupees be placed at the disposal of each of the following branch societies, for the purpose of encouraging the natives to cultivate European vegetables as suc. cessfully as they are now established round about Calcutta, viz,
Hooghly, Burdwan, Beerbhoom, Midnapore, Cuttack, Comillah, Moorshedabad, Azimghur, and Assam.
7th.—That a limited shew of particular vegetables shall be held in reference to the season of their coming to perfeetion.
That a shew of fruits shall be held annually in due season, and rewards given.
Motion No. 2. The secretary brought to the notice of the meeting, that the great increase of new members, had exhausted the stock of the Society's transactions, vols. 2 and 3, and that there were not many of the reprint of vol. 1. remaining.
Proposed by C. K. Robison, Esq., seconded by W. Storm, Esq., that the 1st, 2d and 3d volumes, be put into a second edition, and that the expense be ascertained and brought to the notice of the Society at its next general meeting.
The secretary brought to the notice of the meeting several samples of raw silk, and one sample of sugar, sent in by parties agreeable to a resolution of the Society passed in the 12th April, 1837, to compete for the Society's medals.
The secretary was directed to hand over these samples to the respective standing committees, upon whose reports the medals would be adjudged at the next general meeting.
Read, the agricultural committee's report on the subject of the distribution of sugar-canes at the end of the year, concerning which an advertisement has already appeared in the public prints.
Read, the report of the silk committee on certain specimens of raw silk and cloth produced from the wild silk worm in Assam, Bhaugulpoor, Dinagepore and Boncoorah, referred to the committee of papers.
Read minutes of the caoutchouc committee recommending that the caoutchouc samples from Lieut. Vetch, should be given to Mr. Robert Smith, for purposes of experiment,<-confirmed.
CoM Munications. Read the following communication:
Read a letter from Mr. Robert Smith to the secretary, dated 11th April, requesting to be supplied with as much caoutchouc, as the Society can spare, and offering to pay for the same at the rate of eighteen rupees per maund.
The secretary had submitted Mr. Smith's letter to the committee, who were unanimous that Mr. Smith should have what was available, gratis. Resolved accordingly.
Read a letter from Mr. Robert Smith to Dr. Wallich, dated 7th May, submitting for the inspection and opinion of the Society some samples of caoutchouc cloth, which he had prepared as a substitute for wax-cloth for packing purposes.
From Lieut.-Col. Dunlop, dated Simlah, March 25th, to the secretary, advising the despatch for presentation to the society, of a parcel containing seeds of all varieties of hill forest trees, and several kinds of pine-canes which may be considered valuable for transmission to Europe and other cold countries, giving information respecting the description of vines grown at Koomawur, and promising to forward cuttings.
From Messrs. J. Willis and Earle, dated 12th April, presenting to the Society, on behalf Mr. Jeffries Finch, four specimens of apples grown in that gentleman's garden at Shalepore, Tirhoot, from English grafts.
From M. G. Rose, Esq., of Ramunaghur Factory. vic Coolbariah, forwarding a box containing samples of raw silk to compete for the medals offered by the Society.
From William Storm, Esq., dated 30th April, forwarding samples of silk, to compete for the medals, prepared by Mr. A. McArthur, at the Bamundee concern, in zillah Nuddeah.
From N. Alexander, dated 26th April, enclosing a memo. of the mode adopted by him in rearing artichokes.
From the secretary to the Meerut Society, dated 18th April, advising the despatch of some samples of wool for the opinion of the committee. Acknowledges receipt of the secretary's letter, with copies of the cattle Committee's pamphlet.
From W. Storm, Fsq., dated 8th May, forwarding some wool taken from English imported sheep.
From H. C. Hulse, Esq., dated Muttra, March, 20th forwarding four samples of wool, viz. two of white, one of grey and one of black, shorn from Merino sheep reared under his care, and conveying some information on the subject.
From the same, dated Muttra, 6th April, transmitting, for the inspection of the Society, samples of grass and grass atta, procured in that part of the country; stating that these varieties of grasses are the present, means of subsistence to a large portion of the natives of that district, and that the fact of their being made use of as food appears to be but little known, even to parties long resident in India.
From the same, dated 10th April, acknowledges receipt of secretary's letter in reply to his communication, on the subject of a horse-breeding establishment, &c.
From Dr. J. T. Pearson, dated Jaunpore, 23d April, acknowledges receipt of secretary's letter of the 16th ultimo, returning his communication on cochineal.
From W. Cobb Hurry, Esq.; dated 30th April, presenting an ear of Pensylvania maize.
From Mr. Hugin, dated 4th April, Kedgeree, acknowledging receipt of parcels of books, &c., intended for the Agricultural Society of Mauritius.
From Mr. A. Millett, no date, 1eceived 8th May, forwarding 12 musk melons, of the same description as those presented last year.
From Captain G. C. Dicen, dated Mhairwarrah, 22d April, advising despatch of a quantity of Lucerne seed, for presentation to the Society, and intimating his willingness to forward a further supply at the close of the rains; stating his intention of sowing a large tract of land with cotton-seed and maize, the produce of seed furnished by this Society.
From the Reverend J. Parry, dated Jessore, 17th April, presenting to the Society, about half a maund of Sándoway tobacco, and a quantity of Madras, tobacco, growing in that district, from seed supplied by this Society to Mr. Cathcart, also a specimen of the soil. Requests an opinion on these samples, and information on the culture and preparation of the plant; stating that he has collected a large quantity of seed from both varieties in distribution at the district.
From Major Syers, secretary Agricultural Society of Cuttack, dated 4th May, advising despatch of samples of Virginia tobacco and Upland Georgia cotton, produced in the Society's garden at that station from seed furnished by this Society.
From F. Macnaghten, Esq., Government agent, dated 2d May, enclosing account-current up to the 30th April, 1838, showing the sum of 19,900 rupees, to be lodged in Society's fixed assets, in Government scCuiltles,
An unusually long time has transpired since the pub. lication of the last report of this institution. The society was established in May, 1832, and the first report was published at the end of the next year; the second report also was published at the end of 1834, and since that time no report has been published until the present one. The reasons for this delay have arisen, partly from the circumstance of the operations of the society being of a very simple and unobtrusive character, and partly from the desire not very rapidly to increase the operations of the society, until such labourers might be available to carry on the work as could have confidence placed in them by the committee, both as to their own Christian character, and their capabilities of doing their duties in such a manner as, with the Divine blessing, to bring the truth of the Holy Scriptures to bear upon the hearts and consciences of those who are visited by then.
The readers who have been in the employ of the society since the publication of the last report, are Itaja Aghaee, Joseph Russic, Lal Ghose, Jutti Ali Alu, Preme Mussee, Samuel Ombika Churn, Meer Jan Jane Sheeky, and Mr. De Mattas. Those just at present employed are Raja Aghaee, Sanuel Ombika Churn, and Sheetol; of the rest Joseph is now engaged as a Catechist at Culna. Preme Mussee and Jane Sheeky went to situations of usefulness up the country where the latter is still usefully engaged in connexion with a school. Jutti Ali Alu and Meer Jan found other employment more congenial to their feelings, and Mr. De Mattas was attacked by cholera last March, and departed this life in peace, and in the steadfast hope of entering upon a joyful immortality through the merits of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, thereby proving that he himself was experimentally acquainted with those truths which he had been going about to impress upon the minds of others.
Raja Aghaee attends at the houses of fifteen subscribers and reads the Scriptures therein on an average to about 150 natives weekly, who, in almost every instance, hear the Gospel with attention, very frequently ask questions upon what has been advanced, and, not unfrequently, hold disputations with the reader concerning those truths which are revealed in Holy Scripture. In only one or two instances can it be said that the people give no attention whatever. Portions of Scripture and of the Liturgy, Homilies, and Christian tracts, principally in Hindustani, have also been distributed to such persons as were able to read, and desirous or willing to receive the saine.
Samuel Ombika Churn attends at the houses of twelve subscribers weekly, and therein reads the Scriptures to about one hundred and twenty persons during the week. This reader also attends weekly at a benevolent institution, in which are usually congregated about fifty natives from all parts of the country,to whom he reads the Word of God. From the report of this reader's visits, it appears, that most of the hearers listen attentively ; some hear but do not consider, some question with a view to obtaining a solution of their doubts, and others, with a desire to confound and refute, and to make it appear that which is advanced in the Holy Scriptures, however true, it may be
in itself, and however proper, it may be for Europeans to receive, yet that it is not suitable for them as they are already in possession of a religion of their own.
Sheetol attends at present at only five houses in which about ninety natives assemble and hear him read the Scriptures, and concerning whom it is reported that they do so with attention, frequently holding disputations concerning the doctrines of revelation, and asking questions for the solution of their doubts.
The late Mr. De Mattos, a native of Portugal, was a convert from Popery ; soon after his arrival in this country from Lisbon under the ministry of the late Revd. David Brown at the Old Church ; he was engaged as a reader in 1835, with a view to his visiting the numerous families of the Portuguese, with which this city abounds, most of whom continue to live in very great darkness with respect to Scriptural truth ; since the time of his appointment, about three years ago, to that of his death, he has been constantly engaged in going about from lane to lane and from house to house reading the Word of God to numerous Portuguese families in their own language, During that time he has read the Scriptures to about seventy different families monthly, or, in other words, he may be said to have held about seventy Bible class meetings every month reading the Scriptures, and encouraging the hearers to hold conversation upon the truths of God's Holy Word, and concluding with prayer. It is sincerely hoped that the seed of Divine truth which has been sown by this labourer will prove a blessing to those families who have enjoyed the benefit of his visits.
All the readers are expected, when not engaged in visiting their stated hearers, to devote their time to endeavouring to draw the attention of their countrymen to the consideration of the truths of Holy Scripture.
The following communications received from some of the members, shew, that what is doing is at present only the breaking up of the fallen ground of the heart, which is pre-occupied by all the error and vices of Mahommedanism and Hinduism : they also shew, that there is reason to hope that some of the seeds of Divine truth sown by the labourers of this society may find in some hearts a soil in which it will germinate, take a deep and cortery root, and eventually spring up and bring forth the fruits of lighteousness and peace to the honor and glory of our God and saviour, and the salvation of immortal souls. If the husbandman wait for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain, it surely becomes the spiritual husbandman to be patient, to be instant in sowing the seed of Divine truth, and to persevere in prayer for the enlightening and sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit to cause that seed to be productive of repentance, faith, and holiness, in the hearts of sinners of mankind, and be instrumental in preparing many an immortal being for the service and love of God, here below, and for the enjoyments and employments of the everlasting kingdom of heaven above.
A third states, “I am happy to say the servants attend to the instruction, with care, and acknowledge the truth of the doctrines preached to them ; but, that is all. One man, a Hindoo, who has left Calcutta for his country, I had great hope of, and if it please the Lord, I trust he will come back, he altered his conduct, and improved in every respect ; and not only acknowledged but felt the truth of Chiis. tianity, and plainly told me his intention of embracing Christianity on his return. One of my servants is learning the English language of his own free choice, I trust it will be blessed to him. Upon the whole, they seem to be more willing to hear now than they were about two years ago, and more attentive : they prefer being spoken to in the Hindustani language. One of my women servants related the explanations she had heard here to some of her acquaintances at the house of a friend of mine, and those servants entreated to be spoken to also ; they were so, and they seemed highly gratified.”
Another writes, “I am sorry I have nothing parti. cular to mention respecting the Christian Instruction Society: most of my servants are Christians, and they appear glad of every opportunity afforded them of hear. ing the Scriptures read, and 1 am thanksul to find them attentive and consistent.”
Another communication is as follows: “I regret to state, that little or no effect appears to have been made on the minds of my servants as respects the Christian instruction they receive on the Sæbbath day. I have endeavoured to encourage them to put any questions they thought proper to the reader, and to enter into discussions relative to the truths of Christianity and the tenets of their own belief. For some time they availed themselves of the privilege; but, latterly, they appear contented to attend, listen, and go away unconcerned ; and, it appears to me, that several of them would not attend, but from the fear of incurring my displeasure. Our only comfort under this discouragement is, that we are doing our duty in holding forth the light of truth to a very ignorant potion of our fellow-creatures, leaving the resuit to the All-Wise disposer of events.”
Another member writes, “I have received your note inquiring what effect has been produced on the natives in my house from reading the Scriptures in their hearing by the agents of the C. C. I. Society. I am sorry I cannot give you satisfactory information on this subject, because of my inability to converse with them, unable as I am to speak in any of the native languages. All I can say is, that during the reading of the Scriptures in their hearing they listen respectfully, and often with apparent interest, and I should regret if the practice of readiug to them were discontinued.”
“I have the pleasure of acknowledging the receipt of your letter of the 25th April, requesting a communica. tion on the subject of the effect that the regular reading and expoundnig of the Scriptures have had on my ser. vants, and in reply I regret that I have nothing to report, (I wish I had) beyond regular and apparently willing attendance. Some of them acknowledge what they hear to be truth, but, as far as I can judge, their hearts appear untouched 1" *
“Though I cannot see any fruits, I am glad to have the blessed Word read to my people, and the Gospel simply preached in my family of dependants, and I trust to have the regular attendance of the men you now send, as it may not be always in vain that these Pri. vileges are imparted to my poor servants,”
“The society must, I think, commend itself to every Christian heart. The recollection that we are daily receiving attention, and service from those who are pe. rishing for lack of knowledge, is most painful. How sad this constant habit showed in any degree, renders us indifferent to such a state of things, yet we all feel that it does, without great watchfulness. This society reminds us of our responsibilities, and tends to keep alive our sympathy for the stranger that is within our gates, and l have found it useful in this respect even to pray to our soul.”
Funds. The total amount received since the publication of the second report is Rs 2,410 4 annas and 0 pie, and the amount expended during the same time is Rs 2,367 8 annas and 0 pie : there is, therefore, a balance of Rs. 42 12 annas 0 pie, in hand.
The experiment of reading the Scriptures to the domestic servants of Christian families having now been carried on for the last six years, the committee feels convinced that it is now time to attempt to bring the labours of the society to bear more extensively upon those individuals for whose benefit it was more especially established. They, therefore, now beg to invite the heads of Christian familes to follow the example of these who have attempted to bring their domestic servants, so far as circumstances would admit, within the sound of the blessed Gospel, and for that end to obtain the services of a Christian reader, for the purpose of meeting their domestics at a certain conventing hour, once, twice, or ostener per week, as circumstances may suggest, and of reading to them, in a language which they can understand, the Gospel of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. There is one point to which the committee would especially nivite the kind attention of those persons who are desirous of benefitting their native dependants, and that is, the desirableness of one of the members of the family kindly devoting the hour of the readers visit to the object of that visit, and as frequently as possible remaining present, during the reading of the Scriptures and the discussion which usually takes place, subsequently, as it has been found, that in those cases where this practice is followed, the servants feel that their employer takes an interest in their welfare, and, consequently, are induced to listen with more attention than they would otherwise bestow.
The committee cannot but feel that sufficient attention has not yet been paid by Christians to improve the influence they possess for promoting the best interests of their servants, and, it is feared, that many individuals, who do not think seriously of their dependants, that as they are not desirous of seeing the light of truth, they may be left to themselves in quiet possession of their prejudices, and in ignorance of the only true God and Jesus Christ whom he hath set forth to be the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world. The committee feels also that on Scriptural ground, it is the indispensable duty of Christians not only to attend to the spiritual interests of themselves and their own relatives and friends, but also to those of the strangers who are within their gates. If it be the command of God that the privileges of the Sabbath be extended to all such strangers as are brought within the sphere of Christian influence, as, from the Fourth Commandment, it evidently is, it undoubtedly is a duty also, which every Christian owes to those over whom he obtains any influence, to use that influence, accompanied by his best endeavours, and by his prayers at the throne of grace, for the Divine blessing, to bring them to an acquaintance with that Gospel which reveals the way of salvation through faith in our Lord
land Saviour, Jesus Christ.—Hurkaru, May 11.