I went to Mr. Campbell's, and asked if he had left it; he said yes, he had left something for me yonder, at Mr. Campbell's, which I would know what to do with.
What was it you were to do with them? — That was what Watt said to me, I knew what to do with them.
What were you to do with them? — I will tell you what I did, I called upon different people in the west country.
At what different places of the west country? — At Queensferry, Stirling, Saint Ninians, Kilsyth, Kirkintulloch, Campsie, Glasgow, Paisley, and Falkirk.
What did you do at all those places? — I gave them a copy of each of these.
You gave a copy of each of these, at each place you have named? — Yes.
Had you any written instructions when you went to the west? — In the same parcel there were two bits of paper.
What were they? — Instructions. It is so long since I do not remember particularly.
But the substance? — The substance was to correspond with Mr. Downie, and to send money to him.
Where were they found? — In the packets he left at Campbell's.
There you found written instructions? — In the parcel.
What did you do with the written instructions? — I returned them to Watt.
After your return from the west? — Yes.
When did you first open this packet? — I opened it first at the Queensferry, and then found these instructions.
Who was this Campbell? Was he a member of the British Convention? — He was.
Was there any thing mentioned about sounding the sense of the people? — Yes.
Upon those plans you had been formerly talking with Mr. Watt about, regarding a grand plan; recollect yourself, the question is plain. — I could not say he spoke about sounding. I think there was something about a number of patriots, there was some- thing about that.
Now, in all the different places, did you inquire for the patriots, to take an account of the number? — I never asked about any number.
Lord Advocate. — Now, sir, you say Watt told you, you would find a parcel at Campbell's, the hatter's, and you found one. Did Watt tell you any particular towns in the west, to which you were to go? — No, he did not.
Did that paper of instructions contain the names of any particular towns or places to which you were to go? — I do not recollect getting any names.
Then it was perfectly left to you to go to any place you pleased in the west of Scotland? — I suppose it was left to my own discretion.
Did any person recommend you to go to Borrowstounness? — I do not recollect any
more about going to Borrowstounness than what I have said.
Did you go to Borrowstounness? — I went first to Stirling, and came through Borrowstounness in coming back.
You were in Queensferry? Did you show any of those papers in Queensferry? — No, I did not.
Did you distribute any in Stirling? — I think I did.
Did you or not? I will not take that answer. — I think I gave some in Stirling.
You did not leave any in Queensferry? — Because I did not see any person there in particular.
Had you any particular person that you were directed to at the Queensferry? — No, I had not, I had an acquaintance at Queens- ferry.
Then you went to Stirling? — Yes.
Did you or not give one or more of these papers to any person in Stirling? — Yes, I gave them to all the folks I called at.
Now, sir, do you, upon your oath, recollect the name of any single person in Stirling to whom you gave the paper? — There was a Dr. Forrest, and there were two or three more there, I gave one or two. I just gave them in the morning.
In whose house was it you gave the papers to Dr. Forrest and the others? — It was in Dr. Forrest's house.
Pray had you ever seen him before? — No.
Then how came you to go to his house? — I had heard him spoken about before in Edinburgh.
I ask you — was it not in the committee of Ways and Means Dr. Forrest's name was mentioned? — Dr. Forrest's name was not mentioned to me there.
Was it Mr. Watt who mentioned the name of Dr. Forrest to you? — No, sir.
Do you say that upon your oath? — Yes.
Did you mention to him any thing with respect to the committees that were established in Edinburgh? — I suppose that letter would tell him.
Did you do it yourself? — I suppose I might tell him so.
Did you ask of Forrest the number of patriots in Stirling? — I could not say whether I asked him the particular number or no - I asked him how the society was flourishing there, or something of that nature.
Did you ask him any thing else about the society? — I do not recollect asking him any thing more about it.
Do you not recollect asking him any thing else? — Other persons were present in Forrest's house at that time.
Who were those persons — do you remember them? — Doctor Forrest went with me and got them — I think there was one of them they called Thomson.
How many were there of them? — There were two or three besides that Mr. Thomson.
How long might you remain in company
with these persons? — We might be there an hour or two.
Did you understand these persons to be what they call Patriots, or Friends of the People? — Yes.
What was the substance of your conversation in general? — They would begin with the news of Stirling, and I was telling them the news of Edinburgh.
Do you recollect in general any one circumstance relative to the committees in Edinburgh which you stated to Forrest, and Thomson, and others? — I have no doubt I would tell them about the committees, but I spoke to Dr. Forrest about the plan I have already told you.
What was that? — About imprisoning those that I have already spoke of.
Well, what did Forrest say? — I am sure I do not recollect what he said.
Did Forrest say any thing in reply? — I do not recollect.
You mentioned that plan to Forrest? — Yes, I mentioned it to him.
Did you mention any thing in that company with respect to the plan of arming in Edinburgh, whether for self defence or any thing else? — I may have told them that I heard the Friends of the People had offered their service to the duke of Buccleugh, or something of that sort — I might also have told them what was done in Perth.
While talking to Dr. Forrest or any one else, did you, or did you not draw upon paper or upon the table, in company with one of these men in Stirling a drawing of that pike or battle-axe similar to what you had seen in Edinburgh? — take care before you give the answer, it is very material you should take care? — I recollect it — I believe I did.
Lord Advocate. — He now recollects in consequence of a specific question I put to him — he recollects making a drawing of those weapons which he had seen in Edinburgh to show Dr. Forrest
Where did you go to from Stirling? — I went to St. Ninians.
Whom did you see there? — A Mr. M'Cross.
What is he? — A minister.
Did you show him any of the papers, or leave a copy with him? — I read it to him, and as far as I can recollect, I left papers with all the gentlemen.
Was M'Cross a relief minister, or minister of the parish? — A relief minister.
Pray, was M'Cross an acquaintance of your's before that period? — No, he was not.
Did you ever see him in your life before? — No.
How came you to go to M'Cross? — It was some of the folks of Stirling gave me a direction.
You went to Kirkintulloch or Campsie оr St. Ninians; pray, whom did you call on there? — I called upon a Mr. M'Ewan, a minister, and Mr. Wheeler, a minister, a relief minister.
Did you ever see them before? — No.
Who directed you to them? — I think it was Mr. M'Cross — the man at St Ninians.
Where did you go next? — I went to Campsie.
To whom there? — I do not know the names of any in Campsie, Mr. M'Ewan went with me.
What kind of people did you wish to be introduced to? — The Friends of the People.
You went to Glasgow and Paisley at last? — Yes.
Was that the utmost extent of your tour? you went no farther west? — No.
Had you any acquaintance in Paisley before? — No.
And whom did you go to there? — I called first at a Mr. Hasty's there.
Was he a Friend of the People? — Yes.
Was he a member of the British Convention? — Yes.
And you left papers with him? — Yes.
Now, after you were at Paisley what did you do next? did you come home again? — Come home ? I came to Glasgow.
Why not to Edinburgh? why not straight home? — I came home by the canal, but did not call on any body, and came home to Edinburgh.
When you came back to Edinburgh where did you go first? — Straight home to my father's.
How long did you remain at home? — Just a short time after resting.
Where did you go then? — To the Committee of Ways and Means.
Was it the usual night of the committees meeting? — Yes.
Did you find any of them assembled? — Yes.
Who were they that were assembled? — Those that were there, were Mr. M'Ewan, Mr. Downie, and Mr. Watt.
You remember those three? — Yes.
Now, sir, did you report to them the result of your journey? — Yes.
Did you give any one of them the instructions you had found enclosed in the packet you received at Campbell's? — Not at that time, I gave them to Mr. Watt some days after.
Did you, after your journey was over, or on your way, or in the committee, make up a list of the places and persons to whom you gave those papers, whom you had seen in the course of your embassy? — I took a list as I went along.
What did you do with that list? — I gave the list to Mr. Watt also.
You talked of instructions you found in that packet, was there any other paper you found in that packet, different from the two copies you intended to distribute? — There was another paper, authorizing me to call at the societies.
Did you show that paper to the different I societies you saw in the course of your pro-
gress, as your warrant? — I never was in the societies, but I showed them to the persons I spoke with.
Do you remember what the general purport and tenor of that commission was? — It was just desiring me to call at them.
Do you recollect any thing else in it? — It just directed me to call at them, and tell what I did when I came back again.
Was the purport of this commission, that they might pay credit to you and receive you? — I suppose so.
Was that commission signed by any person or persons? — I do not recollect it being signed by any person or persons.
You do not recollect whether it was signed or not? — No.
Do you recollect whether it was sealed or not? — There were seals at it.
Were there no names opposite to those seals? — No. Not as I recollect.
When you visited persons in the course of your journey, whom did you state your authority to come from? — I said it was from the Committee of Ways and Means, and it was sealed. — I understood it was something to that purpose.
And the people you showed it to, thought so too? - Yes.
Whom did you give that commission to? — I gave it back to Mr. Watt also.
After your return? — Yes.
Pray, sir, did you defray the expense of this journey out of your own pocket, or out of what fund? — I received from Mr. Downie, about 30 shillings.
By whose order did you get that money? — Mr. Bonthrone gave me a line to Mr. Watt, and Mr. Watt gave me a line to Mr. Downie, and Mr. Downie gave me the money.
Look at that paper, and refresh your memory. — That is the list I gave in to Mr. Watt
Mr. Anstruther. — Is that your hand-writing? — Yes, it is my hand-writing.
What is that a list of? — Some of the folks I did, and some of them I did not call at.
Did you call at all of those places? — No, I did not call at any other of the places, than what I told you.
For what purpose did you make out that list? — I made it out that they might be corresponded with.
Who were to correspond with them? — The committee.
Now, this is your hand-writing, is it? — Yes.
Now, read the two first lines.
Lord Advocate. — Begin at the top and read the three or four first lines legibly and audibly to the jury. — "Stirling, support by money."
Tell me what word that is that is next to money? — It is a blank.
What is the meaning of that blank? there are three letters and a stroke between them, see what it is and make it out from them? — I suppose it is "courage."
Lord Advocate. — Read it on now.
Witness. — "Stirling, support by money, courage not great."
Mr. Anstruther. — Gentlemen, there is "S————g," which he hath filled up with the word, Stirling; then it goes on " support by money," at full length; then follows " С————ge," which he tells you, means courage; then he tells you the line would run : " Stirling, support by money, courage not great."
What do you mean by courage not great? perhaps that paper may refresh your memory as to what passed with Forrest and the rest; tell me what is the next word, you say there is Stirling, support by money, courage not great ; what comes next?
Lord President.—What paper is that?
Mr. Solicitor General. — It is his own report, it means Stirling, support by money, but courage not great.
Mr. Anstruther. — Tell me what is the next word. — I suppose it means "support."
Cannot you tell us? — It is a blank.
You have filled up two blanks after a little difficulty, now fill up that. — That is "support," I suppose.
And what are the words that are next? — " Not certain."
There are two other little words? — " support as yet not certain."
Then the first beginning of this paper delivered back to Watt is, "Stirling, support by money, courage not great, support as yet not certain." Now, tell me, why did уоu leave those three words blank? — I left them blank.
Why did you leave them blank ? was it, that it was not very safe to fill them up? — [No answer.]
Lord Advocate. — Give an answer to the question, tell us whether your reason was, that you thought it not safe or what? say one thing or the other. — I did not like to be writing that in the list.
Mr. Anstruther. — The Jury will look at the names. You have said there were two papers in this bundle, one your commission, the other your instructions? Did you ever show those instructions to any body? — I showed them to the different people I called upon.
Did you show your instructions to Dr. Forrest? — Yes, I showed them to all the people I called upon, and showed them to him among the rest, no doubt.
You showed your commission to Dr. Forrest and all the rest? — Yes.
Do you recollect no more of those instructions than you have told us? because if you do, I desire you to tell them now — if you don't, somebody else will.
Lord Advocate. — Take care what you say, they all saw your instructions.
Witness. — Those instructions I think spoke something about a plan, but I do not recollect the particular words.
Mr. Anstruther. — l do not want them; I do
not desire the particular words; but tell me what the general purport of your instructions was as far as you recollect, and what plan it was it referred to? — I did not say the plan.
What did it say about a plan? — It was speaking about a plan, but I cannot speak the words. I have it in my idea, it spoke something about a plan, but I cannot say.
Did it call it a great plan, or a grand plan, or something like that — did it or not? — I have an idea of that word being in, but I cannot tell exactly that there was the word grand plan.
What was the grand plan to do? — What that was to do, I could not tell.
Was it to settle every thing? — I do not mind of its just speaking in that way.
What did you understand it to mean at that time, when a plan was mentioned in your instructions? — I understood Mr. Watt speaking to me.
But what did you understand it to mean? — It might be that plan Mr. Watt was telling me.
Lord Advocate. — You will see what he says, half an hour after asking the question.
Mr. Anstruther. — Did it say any thing about the committee of secrecy? — It spoke something about a committee
What sort of a committee? — It spoke about, I do not know whether it was secret or not; it is impossible, I cannot keep in my mind every thing.
What did you say about a committee? try it again. — I have some idea that it spoke something about a committee of secrecy.
Did it say any thing about Britain being free? you have told us that it spoke about I the grand plan which Mr. Watt spoke about — did it tell any thing about being free?
Lord Advocate. — Say yes or no which ever you like. — I think I remember of its saying something about that.
Was Britain to be free when that plan was executed or not; was the plan you mentioned before to be Mr. Watt's, was that the plan that was to make Britain free or not? — I tell you what I remember, viz. about its speaking something about those things, but I cannot sау what.
Did it say Britain was to be free; what was it, that was to make Britain free? was it this plan or not ? — I cannot recollect the expressions.
Lord Advocate. — What was it that was to make Britain free? was it the grand plan? — It said something about it.
What was it that was to make Britain free — the substance — the sense? — I think they were different sentences as far as I could make them out.
What was the sense of all the different sentences? — It said they hoped Britain would be free, something of that kind.
But you cannot say whether the plan was to do it or not? — It did not say, whether the plan was to do it or not, it might mean that.
Whom were the committee of secrecy to correspond with? — They were to correspond with Mr. Downie.
Cross-examined by Mr. Hamilton.
I wish to know Mr. Fairley, did Mr. Watt at any time say to you he had any intention of mastering the soldiery any where, of making himself master of the soldiers? you mentioned in the former part of your deposition you had some apprehension about the soldiers, and Watt said he had no fear, and be conceived there were a great many friends, and repeated it. I wish to know whether Watt expressed himself so that he proposed the soldiers should be got the better of — I do not recollect his ever saying any thing about getting the better of the forces.
Mr. Erskine. — I think he said he made the tour of those different places without any instructions from Mr. Watt, but merely of his proper motive I wish to know if you have not sworn this? — He gave me no instructions.
You said you had no instructions to go to all those places? — I just went and told them to correspond with Mr. Downie.
Dr. Forrest sworn.
Mr. Anstruther. — Where do you live? — In Stirling.
You are by profession a Surgeon? — Yes.
Do you know a person of the name of Fairley? — A person of the name of Fairley called upon me some time ago, I am not absolutely certain. I think about the beginning of May last, I think Fairley called upon me then.
Mr. Anstuther. — Give the answer to the question Dr. Forrest.
Did Mr. Fairley produce to you any written or printed papers? — A written paper he produced, after talking of some little matters of indifference.
In what manner or character did Fairley introduce himself to you? — He said he was desired to call upon me by a Mr. Bell of Edinburgh.
What was the general purport of the conversation? — I cannot recollect at this distance?
Did he tell you for what purpose he came to Stirling? — I think he mentioned it was with a view to show in what situation the society was.
You mean the society of the Friends of the People? — The Friends of the People, my lord.
Did he show you any written paper? — He gave me three copies, of the number I am not absolutely certain, I think three, and a letter, a printed letter; I think it resembles this very much.
Look at that. — And that likewise.
The papers he gave you were destroyed? — Yes, I destroyed them and the copy of the letter, and the copy of the regulations I gave to one Douglas, those that remained were destroyed by my friends
Now, did he show you any written paper?
Recollect as near as you can, not the words, I do not want them if you cannot exactly state them, but state as well as you can, the purport of the written paper he shewed you. — I cannot pretend to state the real purport, I will state the general purport of the paper.
What was it about? — He mentioned that some money was wanted. I think he mentioned Mr. Skirving and some other sufferers in the cause of freedom, and wished the society would endeavour to procure something for that purpose.
Mr. Anstruther. — That is not the written instructions, but conversation; I want you to state the contents of his written instructions. — There is nothing particular that I can recollect of his written instructions, except it be one part of his instructions.
Speak out, and state that part of his instructions you do remember. — Why I am not absolutely certain of it. That there were to be collectors of a certain number, whether fourteen or not I cannot say, and they were to be provided with
What? — I cannot say, it was a blank.
What did you say? — Provided with, or provide themselves with.
Jury. — Who were to be provided? — The collectors or the people, I do not recollect exactly which.
Mr. Anstruther. — Provided with what? — I did not see any thing.
Was it a blank? — Yes, it appeared to me a blank.
Now, Dr. Forrest, what conversation had you with Mr. Fairley on that subject? — I do not remember the conversation particularly; I аm ready to answer any question so far as I know, but I cannot pretend to state the whole of a conversation I do not particularly remember.
What was the import of Fairley's conversation with you? — The import seemed to me to be to know in what state Stirling was, and to procure money for the relief of those that buffered in the cause of reform.
Did it appear to you to be proper or improper conversation? — I do not know whether I am a proper judge or not.
How did it strike yourself; was it any thing about arming? — I do not recollect that any thing about arms was mentioned.
What occurred to you at the time to be the meaning of that blank? — Am I here to state facts I positively know, or fill up that blank with what I conjecture, or not?
Lord President. The meaning of that conversation, you are bound if you know it, to explain. [No answer.]
Lord Juttice Clerk. — You must have had some idea at the time, tell the Court and jury what it was.
Did you ask Fairley what that blank was? — I really did not, I was rather adverse to asking him any questions about it.
Why were you adverse? — It seemed a little odd there should have been any blank.
What construction did you put upon it? — I fancied it might be something that might not be proper for me to investigate or inquire into.
Lord President. — What do you mean by that something? — I suppose, had it been a proper thing, it would naturally have been filled up.
Did you suppose it was arms? — Yes, my lord, I did.
Why did you not mention it before? — I thought I was not to give any conjectures.
Mr. Anstruther. — You have told me you supposed the blank was to be filled up with the word arms, what did you say to Fairley upon that? — I do not recollect immediately what passed.
Lord Advocate. — It having occurred to you this blank meant arms, did you or did you not prohibit Fairley to proceed any farther? — It was mentioned to him. I believe I mentioned it to him myself. I did not wish to have it in our power to injure anyone; but he should be cautious of what he said.
Now, sir, did Fairley accordingly stop upon that caution which you gave him? — I do not remember what particularly followed that.
Did he ask you any thing with regard to the number of friends in Stirling or its neighbourhood, or with regard to the friends in whom they could place any reliance? — I am really not certain whether he did or not.
Then, did Fairley mention to you any thing with respect to pikes being manufactured or provided in Edinburgh? — I do not recollect the word pikes was mentioned.
Arms of any kind? — Arms, I do not recollect.
Weapons? — No, my lord, — he made something of a form like one of these upon a bit of paper.
Say that out to the jury, I hope you are not concealing the truth? — It was something like a soldier's halbert; we were talking about an invasion, or some such thing, and we were asking about such things for the purpose of defence.
And he drew something like this, upon a paper upon the table? — Yes.
After he drew that instrument, what did he say farther; did he say any number of those were provided or providing; and where were they so providing? — I do not recollect any particular number; if I recollect right, he said he knew some person who could procure instruments of that kind.
Did he mention the name of the person, or place where he resided? — He did not mention the name of the person that I recollect. Did he convey to you, or did you understand where that person resided, from Fairley's conversation? — The idea I had at the time, was, it was somewhere about Edinburgh; I cannot pretend to give it positive; it was my conjecture.
Mr. Anstruther. — Now, Dr Forrest, did Mr. Fairley remain with you after the company separated? — Yes. He slept in my house.
Now, I want you to tell me what conversation passed between you and Mr. Fairley, after the company separated? — Very little. It was about midnight, and I went very soon to bed.
Did he say any thing about collectors? — It was mentioned; I am not certain whether it was mentioned in the printed or written instructions.
Did Fairley say any thing about them? — He mentioned something about them.
Did he say any thing to you; and I desire you to recollect, that you are a person in a considerable situation of life, that you are speaking in a great audience, who hear you, — and above all, upon your oath; answer this question distinctly, did Mr. Fairley or not, say to you any thing relative to a rising of the people, in any way whatsoever? Now answer that question distinctly and plainly. — Something was stated to that purpose; but whether he asserted it was a thing agreed upon; or as a thing that might possibly be done, or as a thing that might happen, I cannot say upon my oath.
Now, did he, or not, say any thing to you, respecting disarming the soldiers? — That was mentioned.
Whom was it mentioned by? — If I recollect it was Fairley.
Now, what was mentioned about disarming the soldiers? — That, my lord, I have heard so frequently in other places, and in the common conversation of the day, I cannot pretend to say the particulars Fairley related; but it occurs to me, he mentioned the circumstance about disarming the soldiers.
Who was to disarm them? — I do not know whether he said that it could be done, by taking their arms while they were absent, or in the night season; I am not absolutely certain of it.
Who was todo it? — He did not state who was to do it, if I recollect.
Was it the Friends of the People, or was it not? — He did not mention the Friends of the People.
Was it the people that sent Fairley there, or not? — He did not say.
Did you understand, from the conversation that you had with Fairley, that this plan, such as it was, was to be effected by the people who had sent Fairley there? — I cannot say, upon my oath, whether it was an agreed plan.
Lord Advocate. — That is a different thing.
Mr. Anstruther. — I do not ask whether it was an agreed thing or not — or whether a thing that might be done — or was to be done - if it ever was done who did you understand it was to be done by — Did you not understand if it was ever done, it was to be done by the persons who sent Fairley there? — Perhaps.
Do not you tell me perhaps - was that your idea? — Yes, my lord.
Did Fairley tell you any thing or not respecting imprisoning certain people at Edinburgh? — So far as I recollect he mentioned some people were to be put up; but he did not state names as far as I recollect.
But some people were to be put up — to be imprisoned? — That is what I meant.
Whom were they to he put up by? — I suppose the same people that were to seize and take the soldiers arms.
Did you understand from the conversation this was to be done by the people who sent Fairley to the country? — Yes, my lord.
Did Mr. Fairley tell you any thing — or say any thing to you about certain people in Edinburgh repenting of their conduct? - Yes, my lord — that probably some would repent — or regret their conduct — or some such words.
Now if I understand you — were not those people who were to be made to repent their conduct the people that were meant to be put up? — I understood so.
Certainly it would have been much better for a gentleman in your situation of life to have told this story plainly, than to have had it screwed out of you in the manner it has been. I ask you now, whom Fairley desired you to correspond with? — I think he mentioned, what money was to be collected on the behalf and relief of suffering friends, was to be sent to a Mr. Downie.
Now, I ask you again; and I desire you to recollect, what it was Fairley said to you with respect to collectors; or what their duty was to be, what they were to do? Were they to be for every fourteen or fifteen members the society censisted of? — Yes.
What were those collectors to do over these fourteen or fifteen? — He did not state what they were to do.
Were they to collect nothing but money? — He did not say any thing else but money.
Upon your oath were the collectors to command the people whether they were to rise or not? — He did not say so.
Did you understand that from him? — I had that idea.
Did you gather that idea from the conversation you had with Fairley? — Yes, I did.
Mr. Anstruther to the Jury. — He gathered the idea that the collectors were to head and command the people when they did rise, from the conversation with Fairley.
Had you no other conversation about arming? — None that I recollect.
What led to the conversation between Fairley and you, upon which Fairlcy drew the plan of a pike upon the table? — The subject we were talking of was, the prospect of an invasion.
Had you any conversation about a convention? — The convention was mentioned.
What was said about a convention? — I do not recollect; there was some talk about it; I cannot recollect it
Was it that there was to be a convention or none? — They expected there was to be a convention,
Where was the convention to meet? — It was not known.
Was it to meet in Scotland or England? — I do not know.
Had you no conversation about it? — Yes.
What was it? — Little more than what I have told you.
You have told me nothing yet; you have told me you had a conversation about a convention; what was it? — It was said a convention was to meet, but no time nor place nentioned.
What sort of convention was it, was it of the Royal Burghs? — It was a convention similar to that which met in Edinburgh, of the Friends of the People.
You were a member of that convention? - No.
You were a member of the society of the Friends of the People? — Yes, I was.
Cross-examined by Mr. Hamilton.
Pray, was it your own conjecture, or did Fairley tell you there were concerted measures taken; that it was absolutely a fixed matter there was to be a rising here? — I gathered that from the purport of his language.
What did you gather? — That the people who were provided with such instruments might defend themselves in case of an attack.
That was the conjecture you gathered from the conversation of Fairley with you? — [No answer.]
Mr. Anstruther. — Did you or not, from the purport of Fairley's conversation, gather that there was to be a rising of the people, and seizing the soldiers arms? — Yes.
Did you ever see a circular letter signed "T. Hardy ?" — I do not recollect it.
Did you ever see that letter, or a similar letter? [showing him a letter.] — No, my lord, I never saw it.
I want now to read this circular letter, which has been proved by witnesses, and is also proved to have been carried by Fairley round the country. It is the printed circular letter from the Committee of Ways and Means.
"Fellow Citizens ;
"At a time when power seems to be making such rapid strides amongst us, while the friends of freedom are persecuted and hunted down on every side, and the genuine principles of the constitution repeatedly violated by those who, at the time they are professing their attachment to it, are aiming the secret blow which undermines it, the friends of peace and reform in Edinburgh call upon their brethren throughout the kingdom: we call upon you to warn you of your danger; we would remind you of the present melancholy state of affairs, our commerce diminished, our manufactures drooping, the industrious pооr wanting bread, and the mingled cries of the widow and orphan assailing the ears of heaven ! These, these are only a part of the
cruel effects of the most disastrous and bloody war, the end of which is wrapped up in a gloomy obscurity, which has scarcely one ray of hope to penetrate or illumine: in the mean time, we behold armed associations forming in different parts of the country; we see the partial selection of citizens, who are entrusted with arms, and shudder in contemplating what may be the motive of this alarming and novel procedure.
"Under these circumstances, what is our resource? Citizens, there is but one thing that can rescue us, a complete reform in parliament. Let us not be awed into a servile submission by any illegal artifices. Let us not sink before the blast of oppression, but let us unite firmer than ever, and the number of voices that call for redress of our grievances shall yet be heard; but never let us relinquish this great work.
"Remember, that till we are fairly represented, no check can ever be opposed to the strides of power; but we may be crushed beneath its weight, like a worm beneath the foot of the passenger.
"In the mean time, we send you a few rules, which are drawn up for the use of our own societies; we recommend them to you, and hope they will be equally serviceable. A committee of union is appointed here, to express the united wishes of the several societies; and a sub-committee, which is called the Committee of Ways and Means, as treasurers for the united societies, and a centre of union for all friends in Scotland. Through their medium, directions and instructions will be given. The money put into their hands will be accounted for, and disbursed in such a way as shall be most calculated to promote our great cause. If, therefore, you have any sums collected beyond what your immediate exigencies require, or if you can collect any among your friends, though they should not be members of societies, you are requested to remit the same to Mr. Edinburgh, who is appointed to receive the several sums for the committee.
"We should also wish to be informed of the number of friends which you have, on whose patriotism you can rely with the most implicit confidence, and who you are sure will spare no exertion whatever in promoting the great cause in which we are engaged.
"We would thank you to communicate the best method of making our mutual sentiments known to each other, and the person to whom our letters may be addressed with the greatest safety. Direct your letters as above, for Mr. We beg for an answer with all convenient speed, and remain, your brethren and fellow citizens,
"The Committee of W. and M."
Which means Ways and Means.
Mr. Anstruther. — We will read a paragraph or two of this paper, called "Fundamental Principles or Regulations of the Societies "