[Appendix B(67) 1792 Report of Commissioners of Inquiry]

APPENDIX (B.) N° 67.

The EXAMINATION of Mr. GEORGE SAVAGE, Acting Collector, Established Tidesman and Boatman, and Extra Riding Officer at the Port of Peel in the Isle of Man, taken at Douglas, October 11th and 12th, 1791.

THIS Examinant saith, That he is Acting Collector at the Port of Peel, and was appointed so in September 1766, by Mr.Lutwidge, the Receiver General. He thinks he took an oath of office on this appointment, and did not give security. He has never been put under instructions for this office, but had written ones delivered him by the Receiver General. As Acting Collector he has no salary, but fees the same as other Collectors ; the amount of which, in the year 1790, was thirteen pounds ten shillings and sixpence.

As Collector he receives the reports of masters of ships, and the merchants’ entries of goods, and grants warrants to the Searcher for landing and shipping. He collects the duties, and pays them quarterly, or when demanded, to the Deputy Receiver General. He also keeps regular quarter books, and returns a copy of them every quarter to him. He has no Controller, and there never was one at Peel. He superintends the different officers at the port.

No officer compares the reports with the entries, and the entries with the books of the Collector, to see that all duties on articles imported have been brought to account. He does not swear on his quarter-book to these accounts. The master of a ship makes his report on oath before him alone ; and dispatches and vouchers of every kind are made out and signed by him alone.

Vessels with salt from Liverpool frequently arrive at this port. On the arrival of vessels with that article, an officer has always been stationed on board, except in an instance this summer, when four vessels laden with salt arrived at once, and one of them was obliged to be discharged without an officer, the hatches having been first opened, and the hold found to be full of salt. The officer keeps an account of all salt delivered out by tally, weighing occasionally the measure, so as to be able to calculate the total weight ; and according to the quantity indorsed by him on the warrant, the Acting Collector grants a certificate of return to the shipping Port, such certificate being also signed by the Searcher. He has never found more disagreement between the quantity shipped and landed, than might be accounted for by the waste, except in one instance many years ago, which happened by salt water.

Coals are frequently landed at Peel, and the quantity is ascertained by the cocket, and the duty taken according to the quantity in the cocket. No officer attends to ascertain the quantity of coals landed. Upon the Searcher telling him that the coals are all landed, he grants a certificate of return to the shipping port; and upon the same information, if part is only landed, he indorses the quantity so landed upon the cocket. He does not have recourse to this warrant, which is kept by the Searcher.

The duties collected at Peel are inconsiderable, most of them ad valorem duty.

No herring bounties have ever been paid at Peel since he came there ; nor, to his knowledge, any sheep or wool have been exported, or carried coastwise ; nor salt carried coastwise.

This Exarninant farther saith, That he is an established Tidesman and Boatman at Peel, in virtue of a constitution of the Treasury of the 8th of July 1766. He took the oath of office, and gave bond on this appointment : For this he has a salary of twenty-five pounds per annum, and takes no fees nor gratuities. He has done no duty as Tidesman and Boatman since he was appointed Acting Collector, Mr. Lutwidge having verbally excused him therefrom.

This Examinant also saith, That he is an extra Riding Officer at Peel, to which office he was appointed by Mr Lutwidge in 1772 He took an oath of office as Riding Officer, but gave no security: For this he has a salary of ten pounds a year for keeping a horse and riding the coast, agreeable to instructions in writing given him by Mr.Lutwidge, dated 30th September 1772.

His station is from Peel to Kirk Michael, or Jerby, and from Peel to Glanmoy, or Dauby.. He rides once a week to each of these places in the day-time, and keeps a journal. He never, delivered in but four journal books, one to Mr. Lutwidge soon after his appointment, and three to the Deputy Receiver-General since the arrival of the Commissioners on the Island ; but the Deputy Receiver-General receives quarterly copies of his journals for the three preceding months. He has a deputation from the Commissioners of the Customs. He has not made any seizure as Riding Officer since his first appointment , but before that time he made seizures, and since in the town of Peel Geneva and brandy are, he thinks, the chief articles smuggled into this Island : Salt and tobacco the chief smuggled out.

He does not think there has been lately any tobacco smuggled into the Island.

The chief Boatman collects the harbour dues at Peel, and pays them to the Deputy Receiver General, and this Examinant takes no account of them.

No person has ever been, to his knowledge, appointed to collect the Trinity lights and the Greenwich hospital money at this Port. He is also Water Bailiff for the whole Island, and was so appointed in February 1789.


Jno Spranger.
Wm Osgoode.
Willm Roe.
David Reid.


Back index next


Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
HTML Transcription © F.Coakley , 2000