[Appendix B(68) 1792 Report of Commissioners of Inquiry]

APPENDIX (B.) N° 68.


The EXAMINATION of Mr. HENRY GELL, Chief Boatman and Acting Searcher at the Port of Peel in the Isle of Man, taken at Douglas the 12th of October 1791.


THIS Examinant saith, that he is Chief Boatman at the port of Peel, and has been so since Christmas laff. He was appointed by a conifitution of the Treasury ; took the oaths, and gave security; but has no inftructions as a Boatman. S

He has a salary of thirty pounds a year, and takes no fees or gratuities as Boatman. He has the command of a boat ; her crew consists of two and himself.

When vessels anchor in the bay of Peel, if they have any suspicion they go out and examine them. Since he has been Chief Boatman, no Tidewaiter or Boatman has ever been left on board such vessels in the bay, nor does he underftand it ever was the practice to leave them, unless they are bound for the harbour, and then an officer remains on board.

He also examines every vessel that comes into the harbour, and leaves an officer on board. : He never ufes the boat except there are vessels in the bay.. His boat is very small, and unfit to go into the bay if the weather is any way rough ; the has only two oars. He has not yet made any feizures with her, or otherwise as Chief Boatman.

This Examinant saith, that he is also Searcher at Peel, by the appointment of the Acting Receiver General, and has been so fince January lath This office wasalso held by the former Chief Boaman. The oath he took on his appointment was both as Chief Boatman and Searcher.. He did not give any securiry as Searcher, nor was he instructed. He has no salary as Searcher, but some fees, such as his predecesor had.

As Searcher, he difcharges and fhips goods purfuant to warrants from the Acting Collector, and signs upon the warrant as to the shipping or landing of the goods.

Upon the discharge of any goods, except salt and deals, an account is taken of the articles landed upon a slip of paper, where the quantity is great ; and when the articles are inconfiderable, he does it by memory. These slips of paper, when the vessel is all difcharged, he delivers into the cutlom.house; and when he does it by memory, he goes, when the goods are landed, and describes them to the Collector.

Salt and deals are dilcharged by tally, by cutting notches on a flick ; the officer on board cuts a notch for every weigh of salt ; and for deals, notches according to the number of tallies. He also by tallies describes the.length, breadth, and thickness of the deals ; these tallies, when the vessel is discharged, are given into the custom-house. He endorses on the warrants according to the several accounts taken either by himself or the officer on board, as above-mentioned.

The officer stays on board a vessel landing deals day and night ; in the case of fair, he battens down the hatches, leaves the vessel, and goes after work is over to her next morning.

He, as Chief Boatman, goes generally in the night, and examines if the officer ifationed in the vessel is on board, but does not leave in writing any entry on board of his having so done; nor does he keep any journal of fiich visits, or as Chief Boatman. Vessels with coals have no officer placed on board them. It has not been the practice of the port for any officer to take any account of coals during landing, but the quantity is taken from the cocket when the whole is landed ; and where only part is landed, from the shiip-master.

Tea, gin, and brandy, are the principal articles, as he thinks, smuggled into the island. Salt, S as he thinks, is the chief article smuggled out ; and before he was in office, he has heard that some tobacco and loaf-fugar have been smuggled out. S He is also Pier-mailer at Peel, by an order of the Deputy Receiver General, and as such collects the harbour dues by the tonnage of the vessel, or the value of the goods ; if Britifh or Irith according to the registry of tonnage ; if a foreign vessel, unless they can underfiand the registry, by meafurernent. The value of the goods he takes from the entries on the warrants at the customhoule. . He

certified as to size and built, by a person residing at Castletown, who is appointed to that office.


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


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