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after, (though a subsequent nomination will be valid",) by two justices dwelling near the parish. They must be substantial householders, and so expressed to be in the appointment of the justices" (23).
THEIR office and duty, according to the same statute, are principally these: first, to raise competent sums for the necessary relief of the poor, impotent, old, blind, and such other, being poor and not able to work and secondly, to provide work for such as are able, and cannot otherwise get employment: but this latter part of their duty, which according to the wise regulations of that salutary statute, should go hand in hand with the other, is now most shamefully neglected. However, for these joint purposes, they are empow ered to make and levy rates upon the several inhabitants of the parish, by the same act of parliament; which has been farther explained and enforced by several subsequent statutes.
THE two great objects of this statute seem to have been, 1. To relieve the impotent poor, and them only. 2. To find employment for such as are able to work: and this principally by providing stocks of raw materials to be worked up at their separate homes, instead of accumulating all the poor in one common work-house; a practice which puts the sober and diligent upon a level (in point of their earnings) with
m Str. 1123.
n 2 Lord Raym. 1394.
(23) It is declared by the statute, that the church-wardens of every parish shall be overseers of the poor; besides these the justices may appoint two, three, or four, but not more, of the inhabitants overseers for each parish. (1 Burr. 446.) But if a parish is divided into town. ships, and is so large, that some townships cannot reap the benefit intended by the 43 of Elizabeth, in that case, separate overseers may be appointed for such townships, under the 13 & 14 Car. II. c. 12. Wherever there is a constable, there is a township. 1 T. R. 374.
A woman may be appointed an overseer of the poor, if a substantial householder. 2 T. R. 395.
those who are dissolute and idle, depresses the laudable emulation of domestic industry and neatness, and destroys all endearing family connexions, the only felicity of the indigent. Whereas, if none were relieved but those who are incapable to get their livings, and that in proportion to their incapacity: if no children were removed from their parents, but such as are brought up in rags and idleness; and if every poor man and his family were regularly furnished with employment, and allowed the whole profits of their labor; a spirit of busy cheerfulness would soon diffuse itself through every cottage; work would become easy and habitual, when absolutely necessary for daily subsistence; and the peasant would go through his task without a murmur, if assured that he and his children (when incapable of work through infancy, age, or infirmity) would then, and then only, be entitled to support from his opulent neighbours.
THIS appears to have been the plan of the statute of queen Elizabeth; in which the only defect was confining the management of the poor to small, parochial districts; which are frequently incapable of furnishing proper work, or providing an able director. However, the laborious poor were then at liberty to seek employment wherever it was to be had: none being obliged to reside in the places of their settlement, but such as were unable or unwilling to work, and those places of settlement being only such where they were born, or had made their abode, originally for three years, and after-  wards (in the case of vagabonds) for one year only P.
AFTER the restoration a very different plan was adopted, which has rendered the employment of the poor more difficult, by authorizing the subdivision of parishes; has greatly increased their number, by confining them all to their respective districts, has given birth to the intricacy of our poor-laws, by multiplying and rendering more easy the methods of gaining settlements; and, in consequence, has created an in
o Stat. 19 Hen. VII. c. 12. 1 Edw. VL c. 3. 3 Edw. VI. c. 16. 14 Eliz. c. 5.
p Stat. 39 Eliz. c. 4.
finity of expensive law-suits between contending neighbourhoods, concerning those settlements and removals. By the statute 13 & 14 Car. II. c. 12. a legal settlement was declared to be gained by birth; or by inhabitancy, apprenticeship, or service, for forty days: within which period all intruders were made removeable from any parish hy two justices of the peace, unless they settled in a tenement of the annual value of 101. The frauds, naturally consequent upon this provision, which gave a settlement by so short a residence, produced the statute 1 Jac. II. c. 17. which directed notice in writing to be delivered to the parish officers, before a settlement could be gained by such residence. Subsequent provisions allowed other circumstances of notoriety to be equivalent to such notice given; and those circumstances have from time to time been altered, enlarged, or restrained, whenever the experience of new inconveniencies, arising daily from new regulations, suggested the necessity of a remedy. And the doctrine of certificates was invented, by way of counterpoise, to restrain a man and his family from acquiring a new settlement by any length of residence whatever, unless in two particular excepted cases; which makes parishes very cautious of giving such certificates, and of course confines the poor at home, where frequently no adequate employment can be had (24).
(24) By 13 and 14 Car. II. c. 12. all persons who are likely to become chargeable, unless they settle upon a tenement of the yearly value of 10/. may be removed to the places where they are legally settled. This statute was certainly a great infringement of magna charta and the liberty of the subject; as nothing can be more cruel or impolitic, than to prevent a person from residing in that situation where, by his industry and occupation, he can best procure a competent provision for himself and his family. To alleviate, in some degree, the hardship and inconvenience introduced by that statute, the legislature has provided by the 8 & 9 W. III. c. 30. that if the major part of the church wardens and overseers of any parish or township will grant a certificate under their hands and seals, attested by two witnesses, and allowed and subscribed by two justices, acknowledging a person and his family therein specified, to have a legal settlement in their parish or township, and shall
THE law of settlements may be therefore now reduced to the following general heads; or, a settlement in a parish may
direct it to some particular parish or township; such person, having delivered this certificate to the parish officers, where it is directed, then neither he nor his family are removable from thence till they are actually chargeable. 6 T. R. 552. But as the object of the certificate was to prevent him from bringing any incumbrance upon the parish where he is thus permitted to reside, by the 9 and 10 W. III. c. 11. he is restrained from gaining a settlement where he lives under the protection of the certificate by any means whatever, except by renting a tenement of the yearly value of 107. and by a residence in the parish for forty days, or by executing an annual office. But besides these two cases mentioned in the act, it has been held, that a certificate person may gain a settlement by residing upon (or having in the parish where he resides) any estate whatever of his own, provided, if it has been actually purchased by him, he has bonâ fide paid 301. for it. Str. 163. 1193. Burr. S. C. 220. A certificate is conclusive upon the parish granting it, with respect to the parish to which it is granted or first delivered; but it is not so with regard to other parishes; for though it will be prima facie evidence against the parish granting it, yet it may be repelled by other evidence; and they may be permitted to shew, that they gave it under a mistake, and in their own wrong. 4 T. R. 251.
A certificate extends to children born after it is granted, but not to the grand-children of the pater-familias. 4 T. R. 797.
But the object of granting certificates is now put an end to by the 35 Geo. III. c. 101. which enacts that no person shall be removed by an order of removal till he becomes actually chargeable. But every unmarried woman with child shall be deemed to be actually chargeable, and also all persons convicted of any felony, and rogues, vagabonds, and idle or disorderly persons, and persons of evil fame, or reputed thieves not giving a satisfactory account of themselves, may be removed, as if they were actually chargeable. And where a pauper is ordered to be removed by an order of removal, or a vagrant pass, in case of the sickness of the pauper, the justices making such an order may direct the execution of it to be suspended; and in the case of an order of removal, the expenses of the maintenance of the pauper during such suspension shall be borne by the parish to which the order of removal shall be made. And if an unmarried woman is delivered of a child during such suspension, it shall be settled in the parish which at the time of the birth was the legal settlement of the mother.
be acquired, 1. By birth; for, wherever a child is first known to be, that is always prima facie the place of settlement, until some other can be shewnч. This is also generally the place of settlement of a bastard child; for a bastard having in the eye of the law no father, cannot be referred to his settlement, as other children mays. But, in legitimate children, though the place of birth be prima facie the settlement, yet it is not conclusively so; for there are, 2. Settlements by parentage, being the settlement of one's father or mother: all legitimate children being really settled in the parish where their parents are settled, until they get a new settlement for themselvest (25). A new settlement may be acquired several ways; as, 3. By marriage. For a woman, marrying a man that is settled in another parish, changes her own settlement the law not permitting the separation of husband and wife". But if the man has no settlement, her's is suspended during his life, if he remains in England, and is able to maintain her; but in his absence, or after his death, or during (perhaps) his inability, she may be removed to her old settlement (26). The other methods of acquiring settlements in
(25) If the parents acquire a new settlement, the children also follow, and belong to the last settlement of the father, or after the death of the father, to the last settlement of the mother, till they are emancipated or become independent of their father's or mother's family, and in that case they have that settlement which their parent had at the time of emancipation.
This is a very indefinite word, and it is no wonder that several cases have arisen upon the interpretation of it. Lord Kenyon seems to have given as full and as just an explication of it, as it will admit, in observ. ing, that "the cases of emancipation have always been decided on the "circumstances either of the sons being twenty-one, or married, or "having gained a settlement in his own right, or having contracted a "relation, which was inconsistent with the idea of his being in a subor. "dinate situation in his father's family.” 3 T. R. 356. 8 T. R. 479
(26) In the absence or after the death of the husband, in that case the wife and her children may be removed to her maiden settlement